Mark Cerny recently revealed a great deal of new information on the next generation of PlayStation when he sat down for a conversation with Wired. We’ve been able to learn a lot about its specs, its support for backwards compatibility, and whether or not it will support PlayStation VR. But the one aspect of the PS5 that excites Cerny more than anything else is- its hard drive.
The PS5 will be using an SSD (or a Solid State Drive), and though exact details about it wasn’t something Cerny went into, he did give a taste of what we can expect. With Cerny calling it “a true game changer” and “the key to next generation”, the PS5’s SSD will significantly cut down load times.
In one tech demo, Cerny put on Spider-Man on a PS4 Pro and initiated a fast travel screen- the load time for completing fast travel was fifteen seconds. Cerny did the same on a devkit for the PS5 (which was supposedly an early “low-speed” kit), and the load time was cut down significantly- going from fifteen seconds to 0.8 seconds, which is almost nineteen times faster.
“The raw read speed is important,“ Cerny said, “but so are the details of the I/O [input-output] mechanisms and the software stack that we put on top of them. I got a PlayStation 4 Pro and then I put in a SSD that cost as much as the PlayStation 4 Pro—it might be one-third faster.” The end result, of course (at least based on this one demonstration) is far better that that.
The SSD will also have applications in other areas- for instance, the speed at which the game’s world is rendered, or the speed at which the character moves in-game. Using a similar demonstration across the PS4 Pro and the PS5 devkit, Cerny showed the in-game camera moving at the speed of “a fighter jet” (as the Wired report puts it), as opposed to the speed at which Spidey himself was moving.
“No matter how powered up you get as Spider-Man, you can never go any faster than this,” Cerny said of the limitations on current gen hardware as opposed to next gen hardware, “because that’s simply how fast we can get the data off the hard drive.”
This was far from an official unveiling of the PS5, of course (we don’t even know if it will be called the PS5), so we can expect to hear loads more about it- hopefully in the coming months. Stay tuned to GamingBolt for continued updates.