We’re still waiting for official release dates and pricing for the PlayStation 4 Pro here in South Africa. It’ll be out in much the rest of the world this Friday, bringing Native and upscaled 4K rendering to the masses. Or at least, the small percentage of people who actually own the requisite televisions. We don’t quite know when it’ll be available here – though indications suggest a late November or early December release.
If you’ve not taken advantage of some tempting offers from the digital jungle, you’ll have to wait for the PlayStation 4 Pro. IS it, however, worth that wait? With its imminent release elsewhere, hardware nuts and video game critics have put the PS4 Pro through its paces to see if the upgrade is a worthwhile one.
The general consensus is that yes, yes it is – with caveats. As you’d expect, those with fancy HDR-enabled 4K TV’s will benefit best, as will those toting PlayStation VR units. While 1080p owners will also see gains, they may not be as noticeable, depending f course on their implementation within each specific game. The biggest issue with the Pro is that games need specific support, notably for older games. While a number have been patched to offer up said support, all future PS4 games will have it built in from the ground up.
Here’s what those critics have to say.
Has PlayStation 4 Pro managed to live up to its marketing? By and large, yes. At its best, it is capable of producing compelling results at native 4K. Stack up Rise of the Tomb Raider on Pro against an ultra high-end PC and run them side-by-side and you’ll see that most of the 4K clarity is there, much of the detail is there and frame-rate remains the clearest differentiating factor. But the fact that a £350/$399 box is capable of even competing is a remarkable achievement.
So who is the PlayStation 4 Pro actually meant for? After testing it out for the past week, I’d say it’s for people who haven’t yet bought a PS4 and want to show off their fancy new 4K/HDR sets. And of course, there are the hardcore gamers who will snap up any piece of hardware that promises to be faster. Most consumers are better off waiting until more games get patched for the new system, and until Sony figures out its 4K media strategy.
The PlayStation 4 Pro is for those gamers who want just a little bit more performance from their games. It’s the same folks who likely have gaming PCs, but realize that games like Uncharted 4, The Last of Us, and Horizon: Zero Dawn aren’t ever making the jump to PC. The Pro is for the folks who quibble about things like checkerboard 4K not being real 4K or spend hours messing with color calibration. Those tweakers who hunt for the right presentation on PC. This is your option on home consoles.
Should you buy a PlayStation 4 Pro? If you have a 4K HDR TV and are looking to buy a console, I’d definitely recommend the PS4 Pro. Even if you have a 1080p TV and are looking to buy a PlayStation, I’d still lean more toward the Pro. Yes, it does cost $100 more than the Slim model, but you get more ports, twice the storage space, more future-proof hardware in the event that you ever decide to get a 4K TV, and some games can look slightly better at 1080p.
We’ll go in to a little more detail about the good and the bad of thePS4 Pro a little later.
Last Updated: November 8, 2016