Get up to a 38% increase in performance with the PlayStation 4 Pro’s “Boost Mode”

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Beast

We told you that in addition to adding external HDD support, the next PlayStation 4 software update is bringing something that’s going to make PlayStation 4 Pro owners pretty happy: Boost Mode (or, as the internet’s come to call it, Beast Mode)

Right now, only games patched to take advantage of the superior hardware in the PlayStation 4 Pro use the increased graphical and processing power, but Boost mode changes that. It’ll let unpatched games tap in to those extra clock cycles. While we’re unfortunately not participating in the beta, Eurogamer’s Digital Foundry is – and they’ve tested a number of games to see exactly how much of a performance increase unpatched games receive.

As you’d imagine, it tends to be down to the games themselves, and games that have hard-coded frame rates – like Destiny – receive no benefit whatsoever. Most games seem to receive some sort of performance boost, with some receiving an increase of up to 38 percent.

Very many games seen to only receive a mild 14 per cent boost, which not coincidentally matches the 14 per cent increase in GPU clock speed (911Mhz vs 800Mhz). It doesn’t however, seem that games running in Boost mode are able to tap in to the second set of graphics compute units, suggesting that games need to be patched specifically to take advantage of the extra 18 units.

“Boost Mode has been designed to provide better performance for those legacy titles that have not been patched to take advantage of the PS4 Pro’s faster CPU and its faster and double-sized GPU,” Sony told Eurogamer. “This can provide a noticeable frame-rate boost to some games with variable frame-rate, and can provide frame-rate stability for games that are programmed to run at 30Hz or 60Hz.

“Depending on the game, the increased CPU speed may also result in shorter load times. Boost Mode is not guaranteed to work with all titles, however, turning the setting off will allow the game to be played in a mode that replicates the standard PS4. As an aside, the older unpatched titles that run in Boost Mode are unaware that they are running on a PS4 Pro and consequently don’t take full advantage of the PS4 Pro capabilities; power consumption for these games will therefore be a bit lower compared to playing a newer title.”

Games that were hamstrung by the base PlayStation 4’s comparatively weak CPU get a decent boost, thanks to the 30 per cent increase in clock speeds. One such game, Assassin’s Creed Unity, is now a much better experience thanks to its stable 30fps. Project Cars is one of the games that benefits most, seeing a 35 to 38 per cent increase in performance.

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No matter the increase, Boost mode is certainly going to be welcomed by PS4 Pro owners tired of waiting for patches that may or may not ever come.

Last Updated: February 9, 2017

Geoffrey Tim

Editor. I'm old, grumpy and more than just a little cynical. One day, I found myself in possession of a NES, and a copy of Super Mario Bros 3. It was that game that made me realise that games were more than just toys to idly while away time - they were capable of being masterpieces. I'm here now, looking for more of those masterpieces.

  • GooseZA

    Uhhh… Geoff.

    “games tap in to those extra ….. cycles. “

  • Wait was that a “Beast mode” transformers primal reference?

    • Lu

      No Altered Beast. Check the banner.

      • I have no idea what an Altered Beast is xD

        • GooseZA

          Look, you’re not missing much. But it was great waaaay back in the day.

          • It looks like nightmare fuel

          • Lu

            Wolfy is staring into your soul

          • It’s garbage. It always has been. Nostalgia is a funny thing.

        • Lu

          An OOOOOLD fighting game where you could transform into a beast. Never played it (Being born in the 90’s and all) but it was pretty highly acclaimed.

          • I was not born in the 90’s but I did live in the middle of nowhere.

    • PurplePariah

      Now I just have Rhino in my head with those dual chainguns.

  • schitsophrenic-toothbrush

    Is it really worth replacing the older PS4 with the Pro? I am having issues with my ps4 ejecting my discs every now and then which is a common issue with the first batch of consoles. Was considering buying the PS4 Pro but i dont know if it worth it.

  • Guild

    Ouch that BroForce gameplay at the end hurt mein eyes.

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