That PlayStation 5 is a large console is evidence. Very big. So big, in fact, as to be the largest console of the modern era, significantly exceeding large machines like PlayStation 3 or the original Xbox One.
The size has not gone unnoticed since we saw it for the first time in June and now, thanks to the statements in Nikkei by Yasuhiro Ootori, we can know the reasons; the vice president of the hardware and mechanical design department, whom we saw dismantling the console and explaining its components in detail, puts the focus on the big fan of the machine.
Its dimensions, 120 mm in diameter and 45 mm thick, and its placement, in the middle of the console to cool both sides of the board, seems to be the main reason, but obviously there is more. For instance, Xbox Series X has a larger diameter fan (130 mm, if any) and the size of the console is considerably smaller due to its horizontal arrangement at the top. In this respect, Ootori confirms that, being able to opt for two smaller fans and reduce the size of the console, they opted for the current design to reduce costs.
The fact is that the board where most of the components are integrated is another differential point: while in the Microsoft console it is divided in two, thus reducing the dimensions, in PS5 we find a monolithic board of a considerable size that, more than probably, has been chosen again to reduce costs.
Finally, the PS5 heatsink also makes a difference in terms of size. To compensate for the heat emitted by its CPU, with variable frequency, and its GPU, Sony has opted for a heat pipe of large dimensions that seeks to replicate the operation of the steam chambers, much more contained, used in Xbox One X and Xbox Series X.
In short, Yasuhiro Ootori has confirmed what many of us thought after what we saw in PlayStation 4 and its Pro version: if PS5 is so big it is mainly to get a better cooling of the console at several levels, starting with the fan and its position and ending with its heatsink and the inclusion of the pointer and much more efficient liquid metal to replace the conventional thermal paste.
An industrial design that makes it a really big console but that, they promise, will serve to avoid the so annoying problems of overheating and noise of fans that the company has been dragging in their current consoles. Let’s hope so.