A smaller size was possible, but would have been costlier to manufacture.
The PS5 has a rather unique design, and one thing that’s been noted about it most often is just how large nd bulky it is. Recently, when Sony released a teardown video for the PS5 and showed the console’s innards, it became clear the its cooling system was largely responsible for its size. Recently, while speaking with Nikkei’s Xtech, Otori Yasuhiro, the head of PS5’s mechanical and thermal design team confirmed that notion.
Yasuhiro explained that the PS5’s large cooling fan is the reason for the console’s large size. Sony could potentially have made the console smaller if they had chosen to go with two smaller fans, but for several reasons, that would have raised manufacturing costs.
“It was possible to develop the PlayStation 5 to be smaller,” Yasuhiro said (via VGC). “For example, by implementing two cooling fans, one for side A and side B, the PlayStation 5 size would have been reduced.
“However, there is naturally an additional cost associated with having two fans. Additionally, controlling the functionality of two fans is more difficult than just one. With these additional obstacles in mind, we decided to cool both sides of the main board with one, large fan.”
Reports have previously suggested that Sony have invested in an “unusually expensive” cooling system for the PS5, and recent details have certainly fallen in line with that. It would make sense, in light of that, that Sony would try to spend less where they possibly could.
Recent hands-on impressions have highlighted the quietness and effectiveness of the PS5’s cooling.