Only yesterday did T3 report on what could very well be our first information about the PS5 Pro, and even though it's still very early days, we couldn't be more excited about the prospect of a super-charged, upgraded PlayStation 5 console.
Right now we're absolutely stoked with the PS5 console, and have been blown away by its awesome performance, bold stylings and quality PS5 games to play.
Watching Spider-Man Miles Morales in action is truly something to behold, and we keep pinching ourselves to check we aren't dreaming every time the game loads in a matter of seconds.
That said, though, the PS5 isn't perfect and it's a cold hard fact that right now, on paper, it is beaten by Microsoft's flagship console, the Xbox Series X.
As such, a PS5 Pro console aimed at a mid-console gen refresh, makes perfect sense for the Japanese console maker – it gets to offer enthusiasts a new flagship to invest in, as well as wrestle the king of consoles crown back from Xbox.
Here we list the five features that we feel the PS5 Pro needs in order to take down the Xbox Series X. The first and most attention-grabbing is a PS5 Pro with TWO graphics cards, but the others could be just as significant.
1. Two graphics cards
As T3 reported on recently, Sony has had an official patent published this year that details a 'scalable game console' where 'a second GPU [is] communicatively coupled to the first GPU' and that the system is for 'home console and cloud gaming' usage.
To us here at T3 that indicates that Sony is exploring the possibility of a games console with multiple GPUs, and considering that the PS5 right now only has one GPU, adding in another GPU within a second accelerated processing unit (APU), would on paper deliver the potential for far more powerful graphical performance.
And considering that the PS5 currently only lags behind the Xbox Series X on paper by a little bit (the PS5 delivers 10.28 teraflops compared to the Xbox Series X's 12 teraflops), this upgraded graphical power would without doubt see the PS5 Pro eclipse Microsoft's flagship and claim the crown of most powerful games console on Earth.
2. Enhanced cloud gaming
The other interesting thing about that official Sony patent was that it detailed enhanced cloud gaming technology that was very scalable, raising the possibility of an upgraded PS5 Slim console or new Digital Edition with better game streaming capabilities, or even a brand new PlayStation Portable 5G.
Naturally, the PS5 Pro as the new Sony flagship would benefit from the same technological upgrade, which would help it fight back against the admittedly superior Netflix-for-games streaming service that is Xbox Game Pass Ultimate.
Right now Xbox gamers have bragging rights when it comes round to both digital-only and cloud gaming, with the Xbox Series X | S pairing with Xbox Game Pass Ultimate and Microsoft xCloud to deliver a best-in-class digital download and game streaming experience.
Better cloud gaming hardware and management would make the PS5 Pro far more competitive in this field, and if partnered with a PSP 5G, could deliver a new best-in-class experience for gamers.
3. A far bigger SSD
As T3 noted in its PS5 review, one of the things that we really didn't get on with was the noticeably limited room available on the PlayStation 5's SSD. Advertised as coming with an 825GB SSD, the reality is a lot lower, with the system delivering fresh out of the box only 667GB post OS and system files.
Compare this to the Xbox Series X, and the Microsoft machine comes out firmly on top, with 800GB available out of the box (although, once more, the system is cheekily advertised as coming with a 1TB SSD). That 133GB does make a difference, too, as it is the equivalent of two or three brand new AAA game installs, or 10 to 20 smaller titles.
And considering that the Xbox Series X also trumps the PS5 in terms of ease of storage expansion (in fact, right now, you can't even expand the PS5's storage as its expansion bay has not yet been enabled), and it is obvious how a PS5 Pro system would have to come with much more storage space out of the box. A 2TB SSD would be the minimum expected.
4. 120fps at 4K
Right now the PS5 aims to deliver new AAA games like Spider-Man Miles Morales at a 4K resolution and 60fps, which not only does it do, but it admittedly looks superb. For any gamer coming off the last gen, where games were very much locked at 30fps at high resolutions, the fact that you can get both UHD fidelity and a super playable, immersion improving, buttery smooth frame rate is super refreshing.
The truth is, though, while the PS5 is advertised as (and is technically capable of) a 120Hz refresh rate and 120fps framerate, right now only a handful of games like Borderlands 3 and Dirt 5 support this and even if they do, they don't do so at a 4K resolution. It's very much a, 'sure, you can play at 120fps, but you have to sacrifice resolution to do so'.
Naturally, a PS5 Pro loaded with two graphics cards, as well as ideally a faster clocked CPU and more RAM would be able to unlock this, with gamers no longer forced to sacrifice one thing to get the other.
Of course, depending on just how powerful the PS5 Pro would be, gamers might even be able to play titles at an 8K resolution (although they'd then no doubt have to once more sacrifice framerate to achieve it), which is actually printed on the PS5 box.
5. Advanced ports and a new design
We are huge fans of the PS5's design here at T3, which radiates a futuristic sense of cool and power that is missing from the understated but boring Xbox Series X design. We also like how big it is, actually, with the console demanding to be seen and a real prescience in any room it is placed in, and were amazed to hear that at one stage it was going to be even bigger.
There's no doubting, though, that a mid-gen PS5 Pro would need a striking new design, not just to keep it adequately cooled (all that powerful extra hardware would generate more heat), but also to double down on Sony's design lead over Microsoft – to show gamers visually that the new flagship was truly the most powerful console on Earth.
In addition, a PS5 Pro would also benefit from advanced port options, such as a dedicated digital optical audio out.
PS5 Pro: Will the dream become a reality?
Right now we think it fair to say that if Sony does have any plans for a PS5 Pro mid-gen new console, then right now those are in their absolute first stages. The PS5 has literally only just launched and millions of gamers still actually can't even buy a PlayStation 5, let alone look forward to a PS5 Pro.
As such, we think it safe to say that we're at least three years away from any potential PS5 Pro launch. Indeed, if you look at the last-gen, the PS4 was launched in November 2013 and the PS4 Pro was not then launched until November 2016 – exactly three years later. If that timing remains the same, that means we should expect the PS5 Pro in November 2023.
The other console we may see after three year? A PS5 Slim, which we've got our best look yet at so far courtesy of the below video.