Considering how much my PS5 overheats already, won't a PS5 Slim just be worse?

New version of PlayStation 5 tipped, but is it needed?

PlayStation 5 top corner (logo)
(Image credit: Charles Sims / Unsplash)

Sony is said to be planning a PlayStation 5 Slim version of its best-selling console for release later in 2023. And it is claimed that it will be cheaper than the existing PS5... more akin to the price of the Digital Edition. All good, so far.

However, do we really need one? And, will a PS5 Slim actually bring more problems than it solves?

The suggestion of a PS5 refresh comes from Microsoft, which included its prediction in legal documents filed as part of its court case against the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in the US.

According to The Verge, the extract reads: "PlayStation likewise sells a less expensive Digital Edition for $399.99, and is expected to release a PlayStation 5 Slim later this year at the same reduced price point."

Such a move would be great news for those looking to get one of Sony's current-gen consoles but don't want to sacrifice the disc drive.

The PlayStation 5 Digital Edition currently costs £389.99 in the UK, but unlike the full-fledged PS5, you can't play disc games on it, nor use it as a 4K Blu-ray player. Whereas, according to previous rumours, a PS5 Slim is said to come with a detachable disc drive.

It might be that you have to buy it as an extra accessory, but at least the console will support it, and I can't see any problem with that.

But I do have a major question that's not so easy to answer: with a "slimmer" build, what happens to heat dissipation?

PS5 overheating issues

I have both a PlayStation 5 and PS5 Digital Edition and the original, standard console overheats. A. Lot.

Even though it is situated in a place where there's space around it for airflow, it can sometimes sound like it's about to take off. And, when playing FIFA 23 this summer, it has often flashed up a dreaded "Your PS5 is too hot" message during games. On several occasions it then closed down entirely - not great during the FUT Champs weekend league.

I've removed the side plates, vacuumed the ports and grille, and generally ensured the fan is free from dust and grime, but it's still suffered at times.

Even the Digital Edition - which is a more recent acquisition - is a little shonky on the hottest days.

This leads me to the biggest worry about a slimmer version - the heat. If a larger PS5 with dedicated heat dissipation grilles and huge fan can have problems, what happens when you try to cram the same tech into a smaller box?

Anyone who's owned a PS4 Pro for a few years will know a possible outcome for that.

Wouldn't it just make more sense to reduce the price of the existing models again, or release a disc drive that works through the Digital Edition's USB-C port?

Of course, the PS5 Slim "leak" came from Sony's main rival, as it puts its case for the acquisition of Activision Blizzard and the mighty Call of Duty franchise. So, it doesn't mean that Microsoft has inside information on a future Slim console. However, I do feel it's safe to assume that the company can make a more measured guess than most.

If there does so happen to be a new PS5 on the horizon, I just hope the "Slim" bit of the name is ditched.

Oh, and another thing...

In addition to the PS5 Slim, Microsoft also estimated that the price of the forthcoming Sony Project Q handheld will be "under $300".

Well, I think it'd have to be a lot lower than that to make it worthwhile.

Sony Project Q handheld for PS5

(Image credit: Sony Interactive Entertainment)

Project Q isn't a full portable gaming machine, like Nintendo Switch or Steam Deck, it's more a connected display in the middle of a DualSense controller that's been hacked in half. It allows you to stream games from your PS5 to play around the home, which is all well and good but surely can't justify the suggested price.

You can already do similar with a mobile phone (or tablet) and a joypad accessory, for example.

I admit that the Project Q does look a neater solution, but around £230 could be a step too far.

Rik Henderson
News Editor

Rik is T3’s news editor, which means he looks after the news team and the up-to-the-minute coverage of all the hottest gadgets and products you’ll definitely want to read about. And, with more than 35 years of experience in tech and entertainment journalism, including editing and writing for numerous websites, magazines, and newspapers, he’s always got an eye on the next big thing.

Rik also has extensive knowledge of AV, TV streaming and smart home kit, plus just about everything to do with games since the late 80s. Prior to T3, he spent 13 years at Pocket-lint heading up its news team, and was a TV producer and presenter on such shows as Channel 4's GamesMaster, plus Sky's Games World, Game Over, and Virtual World of Sport.