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Official PS5 teardown: Expandable SSD storage, quieter cooling system, more

With the PS5 pre-order disaster of 2020 behind us now, Sony has released a new teardown video of its upcoming flagship console highlighting the PS5 expandable storage and more. The 7-minute teardown video gives an extremely detailed look at the new machine from its removable side wings, detachable base, the expandable storage mechanism, details on the cooling system, and much more. Head below for more details.

Official PlayStation 5 teardown

Not only does Yasuhiro Ootori, Sony’s head of mechanical design, show off the machine’s internals, but we also get a better idea of the overall form factor here. It’s big, especially on the fatter end of the console, and appears to take up significantly more space in the entertainment center than the Xbox Series X.

Removable base stand

We get a closer look at the PS5 base here, which is connected to the bottom of the console with a small screw when in vertical orientation. For those looking to flip this thing on its side, the base comes off, hides the spare screw neatly, and houses a small circular stopper you can put in place of the screw’s hole. The base then clips on to the side of the machine for horizontal placement.

PS5 expandable storage

The PS5 expandable storage and innards are revealed by sliding off the outer white wings panels. While the 825GB of internal storage can not be replaced — it’s built in to the PlayStation 5’s motherboard — there is an easily accessible SSD bay. Users can install PCIe 4.0-based M.2 drives and you can get more details on the custom I/O unit in Mark Cerny’s technical breakdown right here. It will be interesting to see how this stacks up against the currently Seagate dominated situation on Xbox Series X. You’ll also find easily accessible dust catchers in there that you can clean out. 

PS5 cooling system

Outside of the PS5 expandable storage bay, removing the outer panels also reveals the large 120mm diameter, 45mm thick, two-way fan system as well as a heatsink and liquid metal for cooling the system. Overheating was a major issue with PS4, alongside the noise it generated, and clearly Sony is going the extra mile here to ensure that’s not the case with PlayStation 5. According to Sony, the heatsink provides “the same performance as a vapor chamber” while the liquid metal cooling system that has been in development for over two years should help to reduce fan noise overall. Early hands-on impressions of the machine suggest as much. 

As pointed out by the Verge, SIE’s head of hardware engineering and operation had this say about the cooling system and reduced noise situation:

We’ve also highlighted the mechanism in the video that we’ve incorporated into the PS5 console to make the operating sounds even quieter… After an extensive and complex trial and error process, we were pleased with the end result and I can not wait for our fans to get their hands on the PS5 console and ‘hear’ it for themselves.

Watch the entire presentation above for more details on the PS5 expandable storage, internals, and stand base.

9to5Toys’ Take

While I for one prefer the Xbox Series X design, it’s nice to get a closer look at the PlayStation 5 in detail ahead of launch. While the overall size of the thing is pretty shocking for me, clearly that has something to do with Sony’s focus on powerful internals and a much better cooling system. If the extra girth makes for quieter game sessions, it might be a worthy trade-off for some. It’s also great to see how serviceable and open the actual box is with just about all of the major components easily accessible in the right hands. Now we just need to hope they go on sale again, and there’s enough to go around in mid-November when PS5 officially releases.

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