With the constant need to innovate, technology evolves at an incredibly fast rate nowadays and will continue to do so for future generations. So it’s no wonder we gamers get a mid-generation yet somewhat incomplete evolution of the PS4 with the PS4 Pro.
This article will be about my thoughts on the PS4 Pro after using it for several months now while only having a 1080p TV. The PS4 Pro does live up to its name though by having an incredible amount of horsepower built in such a compact case. It features a GPU that is twice the size of the original PS4 that also runs at a faster clock speed, an extra 1GB of RAM was added to go with the 8GB of RAM the original and slim version have and is mainly used for applications while the whole 8GB will be dedicated to the games, an extra USB slot compared to the original and a 1TB internal hard drive which should hold a lot of your games and patches unless you want to get more or turn it into an SSD for faster loading times. The hardware itself also has a new design and it looks like they just added a third step of stairs compared to the original one. The only downside I found about it is that it doesn’t support Blu-ray but it’s an extremely minor detail for me since I only use the console for gaming which is what a console is supposed to be used for anyway.
The PS4 Pro doesn’t have any exclusive games since Sony is adamant about it having the same library as the original and slim PS4, so you won’t have to worry about exclusives. Not every game is or will be optimized to make use of the Pro’s power though since it is up to the developers whether or not they will optimize the games for up to 4K quality, 60 or higher frames per second or both if we’re lucky. Though the developers at Sony did give us the next best thing which is boost mode, wherein most games that were never optimized for the Pro are given the ability to make use of the extra power it has. So boost mode gives us gamers more FPS, better loading times, less lag spikes, faster rendering speeds and probably a bunch of other stuff behind the scenes. However, the only cost is that it could make a few games cause abnormal behaviors which will show before you can toggle it on or just have no noticeable effect on the games at all. And unfortunately, it doesn’t improve the resolution.
I have tried playing it on a lot of video games now and it really feels great playing them using the Pro, where you can see better frame rates, super-sampled picture quality and very nice, clean lines. Even if I only have a 1080p TV, I still get to see the options only the Pro has access to like in Shadow of Mordor where I get to choose between Quality or Resolution and the game feels a lot smoother when going with the resolution option. However, despite all the extra fidelity and power, there’s not much we can do if the game itself has a lot of problems like bugs and rendering issues, which so far, the only one I’ve encountered having these issues is Mass Effect: Andromeda. The Pro also gives VR users a better experience with more crisper and sharper images and better processing speed.
Personally, I feel that the PS4 Pro isn’t exactly a mid-generation upgrade but more of what the original PS4 should have been. Even if the PS3 mainly runs games at 720p it still had games that could run at 1080p. So it should have been right that the PS4 would mostly run games at 1080p but initially still have the power to output in 4K. But that would probably have taken an extra 6 months or a year to develop at the time. It’s just too bad that the Pro can’t improve every game’s resolution to anything higher than 1080p without the developers help but we can still hope for a possible option in the future since they’ve already made boost mode.
In terms of pricing, the PS4 Pro is only worth $399 which is the same price as the PS4 on launch. True, you could always go for the original or slim version of the PS4 which is $100 or even cheaper if there’s a sale going on but with the Pro you’re pretty much good for a long while since it’s pretty much future proofing your gaming budget for a new console. And if you already have a 4K TV/Monitor or were planning on getting one, then there really is no reason an extra $100 for a console wouldn’t be worth considering. Even more so if you have never owned a PS4 before but always wanted to get one. It also would be the wisest decision if you’re a gamer that prefers higher resolutions or FPS or is into VR and wants to fully enjoy it. If you already own a PS4 and are interested in upgrading to the Pro, then why not get some of your money back by selling it to someone you know or a total stranger to recuperate any losses. Or if you’re feeling generous, just give it away as a gift to a relative or a friend, at least you can bring a smile to someone’s face. Although it is understandable if you just wanna keep your old PS4 around especially if you feel it has a lot of sentimental value.
The PS4 Pro has a lot of things going for it and will satisfy many of your console gaming needs at least until the next piece of hardware comes out which won’t be announced for a few more years to come. So my final verdict is that I personally recommend getting the Pro even if you only have a 1080p TV around especially if you have some extra money lying around not knowing what to do with it or you just want to enjoy the aesthetics of console gaming to the fullest.