PS5 vs PS4 – should I upgrade my console?

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The difference between PS5 vs PS4 are pretty substantial so we’re going to break it all down so you finish this article feeling confident in how the differences translate to your gaming experience.

There’s so many exciting games for PlayStation like God of War: Ragnarok, Horizon Forbidden West & Elden Ring which were all released in 2022. It’s definitely a good time to be sizing up whether to buy PS5 or PS4.

PS4 was released back in 2013 to critical acclaim, and by 2019 became the second best-selling home game console ever, second only to PlayStation 2. Since its release, PlayStation also released the Slim and the Pro editions. To keep things simple though, we’ll be focussing on the original PS4.

PS5, now just over two years old, has two versions: the PS5 Standard Edition and PS5 Digital Edition. In short, its upgraded specs include 4K resolution, new architecture and faster storage abilities. You might be wondering if it’s too late to buy PS4? We’ll be addressing this query after we’ve delved into the key spec differences between the two consoles.

We’ll focus on the major differences including graphics, storage, games, durability & price. But first let’s put PS5 vs PS4 head to head by listing the key specs.

PS5 vs PS4 – specs breakdown

SpecificationPS5 PS4
Price$499$389
CPU3.5GHz, 9-core AMD Zen 21.6GHz x86-64 AMD “Jaguar”, 8 cores
GPU10.3 teraflop RDNA 21.84 teraflop GCN
RAM16GB GDDR68GB GDDR5
StorageCustom 825GB SSD500GB HDD, TB HDD
ExpansionNVMe M.2 SSD slotUSB HDD Support
Disk drive4K Blue-ray player1080p Blue-ray player
Size (inches)15.4 x 10.2 x 4.110 x 11.3 x 1.5
Weight9.9lbs6.17

As you can see from the table above, it’s clear PS5 has made a giant generation leap from PS4.

Amongst the most exciting differences include its new 4K gaming resolution, immersive 3D audio and a speedy SSD. A good SSD is essential if you want to minimise loading times for your games. It is worth noting that next-gen games like Overwatch 2 are extremely taxing in terms of storage (50GB) so you may need to consider an additional external hard drive.

From the specs alone, you can see how much more powerful the PS5 is than PS4. This translates to support for Ray Tracing, a very feature that means you can enjoy games like Spider-Man: Miles Morales with new enthusiasm as you catch the light on Manhattan’s skyscrapers.

Read More: Best TV for PS5

With PS5, you also get an upgrade on the controllers with Haptic Feedback and adaptive triggers. They’re also fitted with a microphone so a dedicated PS5 headset isn’t necessary, though still a popular option. We can guide you through the best PS5 headsets here.

The PS4’s specs do still deliver on a decent level. You can reach a maximum of 1080p and 60fps and still has access to some brilliant games.

PS4 is almost 10 years old, and we’re slightly weary of how long PlayStation will support PS4. In January 2021, Sony Japan confirmed it was ceasing production of almost all PS4 models. It came as unexpected news, suggesting that there’s a shorter shelf than previously expected.

PS5 vs PS4 – storage

Interestingly, PS5 and PS4’s storage abilities do not vary so much, although there are is a significant difference. PS4 comes with 500GB or 1TB of internal HDD, whilst PS5 has 825GB storage capacity.

On the face of it, the number may seem complexing. However, PS5 storage uses SSD which vastly improves the console’s gaming performance. This basically translates to shorter waiting times to load titles, with game files being read and delivered to the console within milliseconds.

Especially if you already have a PS4 and are considering the upgrade to PS5, you’ll want to consider buying a new hard drive for PS5. Newer titles like Overwatch 2 take up 50GB of space, so if you already have a large selection of PS4 games, storage will definitely become an issue further down the line. If storage is looking like an issue for you, consider what the best external hard drives for PS5 are to buy.

Read now: Best monitor for PS5

PS5 vs PS4 – games

PS5 definitely comes out on top, boasting to be 99% backwards compatible with PS4 games. A few notable mentions which aren’t compatible include TT Isle of Man – Ride on the Edge 2 & Shawden.

Games like Apex Legends, Call of Duty: Warzone & Among US have been made as cross-gen games too.

Given the trajectory of PlayStation’s updates, you can expect next-gen games to be coming up fast. By February 2023, Sony is releasing PSVR 2 which has promised at least 20 new PS5 games which you can find here. If this sounds up your street, then PS5 should definitely be your console of choice.

Read More: PSVR 2: Release date, specs & new features

Final word

Overall, we think PS5 is definitely the better investment considering the likelihood of PlayStation phasing out PS4 in the future. According to a report, Sony planned to stop making PS4 in 2021, but following PS5 shortages they scrapped this idea, placing faith in their older but reliable console.

So whilst PS4 is definitely looking safe for the foreseeable future, this will not always be the case, and you may end up short-chained having only saved $100 by choosing PS4.

Read More: Best keyboard and mouse combo for PS5

Frequently asked questions

Are there two versions of PS5?

Yes – there is the standard PS5, then there’s the PS4 Digital Edition which is a cheaper alternative without a disk drive.

Why is PS5 so big?

PS5 is a large console at 15.4 inches tall thanks to its large single fan needed to keep the console from overheating. This is definitely something you need to factor in before committing to a PS5.

Can I play my PS4 games on PS5?

The majority of PS4 games have been made compatible with PS5. Not only that but those games will be able to make use of the PS5’s Game Boost mode which increases frame rates.

About the Author

Romilly Cotta

Romilly is a tech writer for Videogamer. When she's not covering the latest tech and hardware releases, you'll find her taking care of her Nintendogs.