When Sony unveiled the PS4 Pro, the original PS4 had been on general release for almost three years. The new, souped-up version of the console was officially revealed in September 2016, and Sony made a big deal of the higher-resolution graphics and better performance it would enable in games. Many games did, indeed, take advantage of the PS4 Pro’s superior graphics tech, and if you owned a 4K TV, it was a revelatory experience that made games look incredible.
Fast-forward to 2023, and there’s talk of Sony doing the same thing again for the PS5. After all, the console is at the exact same spot the PS4 was at when speculation began to swirl about a PS4 Pro, and it’s fair to say that there’s a lively and spirited discussion going on regarding whether the base PS5 is capable of running some of the games it’s playing host to. Here’s everything we know about the possible existence of a PS5 Pro and whether we’ll see one this year.
Sony is saying nothing
So far, Sony has remained reluctant to announce a PS5 Pro officially. In fact, the company hasn’t made any comments regarding a potential mid-generation upgrade at all. That makes sense; we’re only in May, after all, and the PS4 Pro wasn’t officially unveiled until September. If a PS5 Pro is on the cards, then it’ll likely be announced closer to the holiday season, when gamers are more likely to buy it. Without an official announcement, we’ll have to fall back on rumours, informed speculation, and good old-fashioned guesswork to discuss the PS5 Pro.
PS5 Pro rumours and “leaks” abound
Of course, there’s plenty of that speculation out there. YouTube channel Moore’s Law is Dead released a video titled “PlayStation 5 Pro and Xbox Refresh Leaks: Do Gamers Want 8K Consoles In 2023?”. In the video, the channel says that a PS5 Pro is in the works and that Sony is “considering radically different specs” for its refreshed machine. Now, since this is a YouTube channel and not any kind of official source, we should, of course, take its comments with a pinch of salt, but it’s a start.
In January this year, meanwhile, gaming insider Tom Henderson claimed that the long-awaited PS5 Pro refresh wasn’t going to come any time soon. According to Henderson, Sony is working on an updated model of the PS5 rather than a full-blown Pro, and that model is unlikely to make any radical changes. Instead, it’ll simply update some minor components and will look and feel much the same as the original PS5, although it’ll cost less to produce and ship due to a detachable disc drive (on the manufacturer end).
Henderson says he doesn’t believe the original PS5’s capabilities have been fully explored yet, and so until that happens, a PS5 Pro is unlikely. He says that he’s “heard more about the PS6 than a PS5 Pro”, so it looks like Sony might be deciding to skip a mid-generation refresh this time. Again, though, Henderson’s comments should be taken with a pinch of salt, as with any “insider”; he’s not a Sony employee, and so he doesn’t speak with Sony’s authority, although he’s generally considered to be a trustworthy source of information. We’ll have to wait and see if he’s right.
Another potential source of info about the PS5 Pro comes from a supposed presentation given by electronics company TCL. At this “presentation”, which apparently took place in Poland and was reported on by Polish news source PPE, the PS5 Pro was supposedly mentioned as part of a mid-console generation refresh. We don’t have much more than this to go on regarding that presentation, though, and it’s also possible that even if the presentation did take place, TCL could just have been speculating in order to drive its product design process.
We can also look to trusted source Insider Gaming, which recently published an article claiming that the PS5 Pro is “100%” in development. The website posited a potential release date of Q4 2024 for the PS5 Pro, which would make sense given the average lifespan of a console.
What could a PS5 Pro bring to the table?
If you’re reading this and you’ve got a PS5, then you might be asking yourself what the need is for a PS5 Pro. After all, the current-gen console is capable of rendering some truly incredible scenes with its current graphics capabilities; games like Spider-Man: Miles Morales and Returnal look incredible on PS5 and run smooth as butter, too. With that in mind, is there even a need for a PS5 Pro?
Some gamers would say that there is. Recently, Star Wars Jedi: Survivor launched to a mixed reception. Although critics praised its story and gameplay, they (and many gamers) also made reference to the game’s poor performance, which is at its worst on PC. The game also suffers from bad performance on PS5, too, with frame rates dipping even in the 30fps-capped resolution mode. It’s a similar story elsewhere; games like A Plague Tale: Requiem can’t achieve 60fps on PS5, and other games also struggle to reach that hallowed frame rate.
A PS5 Pro could refresh the PS5’s internals to the point where it can keep up with games like these. We’d also like to see a larger internal storage capacity, because the rather oddly-sized SSD inside the PS5 struggles to hold games that can be upwards of 100-150GB in size. 8K support isn’t particularly necessary; we’ve heard many people talking about the potential for a PS5 Pro to support 8K resolutions, but most people don’t have 8K TVs yet, so this feels like a needless extravagance, especially for a mid-generation refresh.
In any case, much of our discussion regarding the PS5 Pro unfortunately has to default to speculation and wishlisting, because there’s been no official announcement as yet. One thing is for certain, though: if there is, you’ll see it here first.