Analysis: Breaking down the PlayStation 5 console and accessories reveal

Every console reveal comes with both backlash and praise for its design, but many should keep in mind that how a console looks on the outside doesn’t have a major impact on performance. Video game systems aren’t race cars and designing one that looks fast doesn’t mean that it will compute faster. The heavy lifting is done by the silicon and circuits powering the machine. At most, the external design factors into air flow and the noise a system makes.

With that said, the PlayStation 5 follows a trend for the console. The odd-numbered PlayStation systems have notable curves to them. The original had a circular lid that kept the CD in place. The PlayStation 3 had a rounded top that made it look like “Darth Vader’s medicine cabinet,” according to Newsweek. The even-numbered PlayStation consoles had a boxy design. That’s notable with the two-tiered PlayStation 2 and the sharp angles of the current PlayStation 4.

What stands out about the PlayStation 5 is the sweeping curves on the system and the two-tone color scheme. When it was first shown, those two elements made gamers wonder if they could lay it down horizontally. That’s a concern for those who have entertainment cabinets similar to Ikea’s Malsjo TV bench. Thankfully, the PS5 can be set flat or vertically courtesy of the black stand that is supposed to fit at the bottom of the console.

Visually, the design is striking with the curving white layers sandwiching the internal black components. It almost looks like a tulip with the way the outer shells curve down and over the black section. Two ports sit in the direct center. One is a USB-C and the other is a USB-A. That means the console could possible support older peripherals. The conversion to USB-C-only systems hasn’t happened yet. It appears that there is either blue paint or a blue light rimming parts of the black section. I assume it’s a light and it will shine blue letting players know that the system is turned on. It’s also ribbed hinting that it could play a role in the airflow of the system. Here’s hoping that the PS5 is quieter than the jet-engine roar of the PS4.

Acccording to the video clip, the white surface have a textured grip on the inside. The USB-A port has a lightning symbol that I assume means it can power devices. The USB-C port has a symbol that looks like one for USB 3.0. The back of the console wasn’t revealed.

Lastly for the first time, Sony is launching two SKUs for the PlayStation 5. The standard model features an Ultra HD Blu-ray disc drive and the digital edition doesn’t have that extra bit. I figure the standard model will be more expensive given the extra hardware and I imagine it’s for those who have a large Blu-ray movie collection or for retro gamers who hope that the PlayStation 5 will offer backward compatibility via discs. Whatever the case, I’m personally leaning toward the digital version because most of my content comes via the PlayStation Store nowadays.

In addition to the console, Sony announced several peripherals that each carry over the two-tone color scheme and design touches. They include the following:

HD Camera — It features dual 1080p lenses for streaming. I also assume the lenses will play a role in whatever virtual reality plans Sony has coming up. The dual lenses add depth perception and may help create cutouts for streamers so they can go live without the need for a green screen.

Media Remote — This looks like a fairly standard remote control. This is for people who don’t feel comfortable navigating the PlayStation 5 interface with the DualSense controller. It also has a built-in microphone that hints at voice control.

DualSense Charging Station — This is another standard charger for two DualSense controllers. It doesn’t seem spectacular or a must-have.

Pulse 3D wireless headset — This device has 3D audio support and dual noise-cancellation, but it also comes with a USB dongle. That means there may not be integrated wireless support for the headset. That’s a disappointment. Microsoft has opened up the Xbox One to manufacturers such as Turtle Beach, and that company has created headsets that connect directly to the console without the need for a dongle that can easily be lost or onerously connected to the system.

Although more details were given, the PlayStation 5 Reveal event didn’t have one of the biggest pieces to the puzzle — the price. That’s still up in the air.

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Author: Gieson Cacho