You’ll Never Guess Why Sony Kept the PS4′s Power Consumption Under 250 Watt

Few things are more fascinating than hearing what the engineers that gave birth to a console have to say about the ins and outs of its design, as you’ll often learn how choices that are apparently disjointed are instead deeply connected in ways that you’ll never imagine. Many of those design decisions were taken for the PS4, but one is particularly intriguing, as explained by Sony Computer Entertainment Engineering Director Yasuhiro Ootori.

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TomahawkX1670d ago

Really amazed how they engineered this thing, it sure is a magnificent machine.

MRMagoo1231670d ago

Best and well made console in gaming history imo, and the records it is breaking seem to agree.

abzdine1670d ago

i expected something else than a smaller size cause that's the most obvious thing as a result of low consumption.

i expected something like so the clawwd can pass through :D

Nerdmaster1670d ago

Unfortunately, the design is awful. At least I know they'll change it in the future slim version.

Monolith1670d ago

Please do explain. I'm not understanding.

cleft51670d ago

Yet another savvy move by Sony, shows they really know what they are doing. Glad I have a PS4 and PSVita.

mewhy321670d ago

Sony are incredibly talented at making console hardware. That shows in the size, power, efficiency, and cost of the PS4. Giving 'gamers' what they want, at a price they want.

gigoran1670d ago

When they were making it and the guys come in and say "hey boss, what do you want it to look like?" he could have said "meh... whatever. What do I care?"

But that didn't happen. They actually took the time to work on little details like this to make it a wonderful console.

or... are you just another microsoft fanboy spewing rubbish?

Nerdmaster1670d ago (Edited 1670d ago )

The console is just ugly. When Xbox One was revealed, everyone laughed and said that it looked like a VCR, that it was too boxy and whatnot. A quick search on Google will show you tons of images that make fun of it. After that, PS4's design was revealed to be very similar to Xbox One's and suddenly all those who love Sony and were laughing at Microsoft started to say how PS4 is beautiful.

But they always change the design of the slim versions, so I'm expecting that its design will be much better. Well, it certainly can't get worse...

Utalkin2me1670d ago


Do you have your glasses on? Or maybe you have cataracts?

You do realize first off the PS4 is almost half the size of the Xbox1? And the PS4 has more sleek lines then the Xbox1.

fanboybeatdown1670d ago

So basically it's 250 watt to make sure it uses a TWO PRONG POWER CORD?

Are you serious?

Does that mean the ps4 could have been truly next gen with a THREE prong power cord?

Please tell me that Sony didn't shaft us over this...

Kennytaur1670d ago

I think the PS4 is pretty, but the power and eject "buttons" are simply awful, the usb port placement means you can't fit thick sticks like my 120GB one in and then there's the wobble. It's certainly not perfect.

ShwankyShpanky1670d ago

@fanboybeatdown: Wow... did you really waste your second bubble just to repeat the exact same post that got collapsed for 'trolling?'

I guess maybe you think that's being clever, but the irony is that now you can get bubbled down twice for the same stupid comment.

Nerdmaster1670d ago (Edited 1670d ago )

Come on, you can't deny their similarities. Both are vexy boxy, both have the two-tone gloss/matte design, there's a division in the middle of them (well, PS4 has a slightly larger matte area), the disc drive is in the exact same place in both, they have very similar width/length/height proportions, and they both look like VCRs. Of course that there are some differences, but saying that they are completely different is like saying that Wii U Pro Controller is nothing like Xbox 360 controller because the layout of the buttons is different.

Prime1571670d ago


Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, so it's ok that YOU think the console is ugly, but many people disagree, obviously.

Nerdmaster1670d ago

Well, here on N4G I've seen people claim that Knack is a better game than Super Mario 3D World, so I guess that saying that PS4's design is beautiful is not that absurd in comparison. But I still think that those who said Xbox One was ugly and now say that PS4 is beautiful are being hypocritical.

TheGreenMan1670d ago


"both are very boxy"

Please explain how a sharp angled parallelogram-shaped object (PS4) and a BOX-shaped object (X1) can both be "very boxy."

Gamingcapacity1670d ago

@Nerd. Wow! So because they are both black and both have disc draw on the same side, they are the same?

I've never seen a device, let alone a VCR, the same shape as the PS4. The light strip across the middle, the deep groove around the edge, the buttons, the concealed disc slot and usb ports and the overal shape are thing the X1 doesn't have.

BTW this is a post that says that one is better than the other but a post to say that they are 2 completely different designs.

OutcastMosquito1670d ago

Best made console? Not really considering mine wobbles because of the cheap rubber grips on the base.

FamilyGuy1670d ago

The PS4 has this cool, angled design like it's a fast car or something, the X1 is boxy like a big ass 1980s clunker.

If the X1 was smaller in height it would look like a DVD player rather than a VCR and that would still make it an effortless, simplistic design. There was no effort put in to it, the black, glossy slim model 360s look better.

OutcastMosquito1670d ago

Dude you're not serious? Most well made console? I disagree in almost every way considering it's a royal pain to plug the HDMI port and power cable into the back without having to fully rotate the system to see where they are. And my PS4 wobbles when pressure is applied to the left side corner facing you because of the cheap and flimsy rubber grips on the base. Other than that it's a beautiful design.

Mega241670d ago

I disagree, the ps2 was on of the greatest design IMO, it lasted the full 6 years and never broke for me, I bought a launch ps2, and played for hours at an end, since I bought the memory card later after 1 year of owning it, the maximum time I had it on was 3 weeks straight, trying to finish FFX. The 360/ps3 had them own for 5 hours and they started to underperform and crash.

dantesparda1669d ago (Edited 1669d ago )

So they possible cut down its capabilities to keep the system small? This is a stupid reason in my opinion and shows that their priorities where not in the right place. The priorities should have been to make the system as powerful as possible for the lowest price possible.

And i love how all the Sony fanboys are acting like this is some impressive reason, its not. These companies priorities are all whacked in my opinion

H0RSE1669d ago

Since this discussion apparently turned into a fashion show concerning the PS4 vs X1, I guess I'll give my 2 cents:

Regardless of words being thrown around to describe the X1 - boxy, big, VCR, etc. one thing about its design, is that it works - it looks like it belongs in your living room or in your entertainment center. Hell, it's been compared to looking like vcr's and dvd players... it doesn't standout or look like a game console - it just blends in with the rest of your equipment, and even if its the only piece of equipment you have, it still looks like it belongs.

The PS4 has a more unorthodox design - alien almost. Instead of blending in, it stands out, almost like it wants people to draw attention to it. Although sleek and elegant, it looks more like a game console, or to put it bluntly, it looks like an expensive toy, like previous Xbox's and PS's.

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fanboybeatdown1670d ago ShowReplies(1)
GraveLord1670d ago

Wow. 14 people either really hate you or are pure trolls.

LocutusEstBorg1670d ago

Laptop hardware in something 4x the thickness of a laptop? Not much of an achievement... All it has is some code signing checks.

TheXgamerLive1669d ago

The true reason is overheating. The ps4 was desgned to handle 4 gigs of GDDR5 and was last min up'd to 8. More wattage equalled overheating issues and it srill could be in future games
However i thing sony will have that figured out if/when it comes

MRMagoo1231669d ago

yes thats right at the last minute they added 4 extra gigs of gddr5 /s derp derpitty derp.

dantesparda1669d ago

@ Xgamer

What!? what you said makes no sense at all. Derp, derp, derp.

If they are worried about overheating with 4gigs, add 4 more? Nonsense!

Sy_Wolf1669d ago

You know they just used higher density chips right? And even if they didn't it's not like they couldn't have adjusted the heat sink slightly to accomidate extra chips that don't generate that much heat.

Akuma2K1669d ago


The PS4 design looks truly next gen, can't say the same for the xbox one which looks like a big vcr.

jerethdagryphon1669d ago

i have lots of problems with the design personally
mainly the damn thing attracts dust like a paino and that i keep grabbing the wrong controlelr

otherwise its great machine

bornsinner1669d ago (Edited 1669d ago )

you sound like a right fanboy, would you be amazed to see a pc built with an apu impressive? on top of that they had to make low power consumption because of the small design. wonder why cpu specs are still a mystery? games like killzone/driveclub/knack stuggling to hit 60fps give you a hint?

steambox is the most powerful console.

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nohopeinc1670d ago

I cannot help but imagine how the writer of this article is so proud of him/her self for this. Just a shame that it's a couple of paragraphs to explain something that is irrelevant. I also find it incredibly difficult to believe this help with the miniaturization of the console, 3 prong, 2 prong the difference would have been almost nothing.

GarrusVakarian1670d ago (Edited 1670d ago )

"3 prong, 2 prong the difference would have been almost nothing."

In a console where every single tiny bit of space has been filled, "almost nothing" is something. Im pretty sure the people who designed this console know what they are talking about. Look at the pics, everything is so crammed.

I look at my PS4 next to my PS3 slim and i can't believe how small the PS4 is, it's incredible that they managed to make it that small with the power supply inside it.

nohopeinc1670d ago

It is simply not an issue is my point. When you crack a PS4 open there isn't a no space issue inside of it. It has room. Why would a person NOT buy a PS4 because of size? A little bit bigger and whatever it will still sit in the same place and still play games.

I suppose I just don't see the point in making something like a game console smaller, it makes no difference. For example the size difference between XB1 and PS4 I could care less. It does not change anything about the consoles policies or capabilities or lack there of.

Just a heads up, I am looking at a couple of 3 prongs, yeah still smaller than PS4, just a few examples, Tablet, Laptop, oh my HTPC still smaller. So yeah seems to not make a big difference.

nukeitall1670d ago

If anything, this to me shows stupidity and that the design wasn't necessary due to the best "gaming" machine it touts to be.

It essentially put size and perhaps looks in front of power.

GarrusVakarian1670d ago (Edited 1670d ago )


"It essentially put size and perhaps looks in front of power."

Yet it is smaller than the X1 AND the most powerful next gen console.........I don't think they put size/looks before power....they managed to pull of BOTH of those things simultaneously.

"the best "gaming" machine it touts to be. "

Troll harder.

"this to me shows stupidity"

Lmao, stupidity? Are you serious, look what they managed to do with that consoles design, to have all that tech AND the power supply inside something that is much smaller than its rival is anything but stupid. It's wizardry. The only example of stupidity i see here is your reply.

DragonKnight1670d ago

@nukeitall: Well lucky for you Microsoft went with that classic VHS look and size so that they could pack in less power and more tv.

kayoss1670d ago

Wait... what, there's a TV inside the xbox one? LOL.

Advertisement reads: "Xbox One, its not a TV with a VCR, its a VCR with a TV."

Utalkin2me1670d ago


Never ceases to amaze me how butthurt some people get, roflmao.

kingPoS1670d ago


Besides the point of the PS4 not needing to grounded, there's also less chance of being zapped. Whenever I see a humming Xbox power brick I immediately think of needing a really good surge protector.

Gateway MT6706 2008

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Abriael1670d ago (Edited 1670d ago )

Pick up a three prong power inlet and a two prong one and check out the difference in size. It's definitely not small.

It was relevant enough to prompt SCE's engineering director to talk about it in front of an audience of industry professionals.

Spenok1670d ago

I always love finding your comments, they tend to do the logical speaking for me lol.

It's nice to know someone else out there knows what they are talking about.

Keep it up Abriael, you have a lot of bubbles for a reason. :)

monkey nuts1670d ago (Edited 1670d ago )

Spenok, be careful mate. One slip of the tongue and you'll be scrapping Abriaels crap off of it. XD.

OT: well I guess the article was correct, because I wouldn't have guessed the rite guess that they presumed I wouldn't guess. ?

moujahed1670d ago

How can you say that? Look at the fat PS3 models... Your FiOs modem, or better yet check out the Xbox1 power supply... Of course it helps with the miniaturization of the console.

Akuma071670d ago

Are you one of those anti Sony fanboys? Cuz you sound like one.

Are you a hardware engineer? Designer? Any experience building pc's? If not, then stfu.

nohopeinc1670d ago

Not at all I think Sony is doing a fantastic job with the PS brand especially the content they provide to PS+ users.

You got me I am NOT a hardware engineer or a hardware designer. But I do have eyeballs and I am currently holding a 2 prong device and a 3 prong device. This may come as a shocks but the 3 prong is smaller than the 2 prong.

Now just a couple of things, I don't mind that they used a two prong I could care less. My problem is with the article, firstly. Secondly the fact that this is a non issue. They are playing it up to make it seem like it would have played a huge difference.

Akuma071670d ago

Well I don't really know what the point of the article was. I only skimmed the important bits. But a lot has been said about the design of the PS4. Many have said it's a very well designed system. This is just a part of how that came about.

kayoss1670d ago

In the general and consumers eyes a three prong and two prong may not seem that much of a difference. But in a hardware and hardware engineer's eyes it makes a lot of difference.

ProjectVulcan1670d ago (Edited 1670d ago )

Whereas I am sure it was a minor consideration the fact the machine is barely 150 watts shows that it wasn't particularly engineered to stay under 250 watts specifically.

Original PS3 was only 210 watts on its original design but had a 3 prong for headroom sake I suspect. For the machine to be close to 250 watts or even 200 watts it would probably be far too expensive to make anyway, let alone the size of a power port being a major factor.

A 200+ Watt PS4 would employ a die so large Sony would end up losing a bunch of money on each one made. PS4 was almost certainly designed to restrict the cost of the machine based on the cost of the APU inside which is by far the most expensive single part in the machine.

liquidhalos1670d ago

Its not really irrelevant, some people find stuff like that interesting and as this is a gaming NEWS website, any and all interesting news is welcome. If you arent interested in why its less then 250W why did you click the link? Its pretty obvious what the article is going to be about based on it.

nohopeinc1670d ago

Honestly I was curios as to how this would be news worthy. The title is designed to draw you in, that's why it's a headline. It served it's purpose well. If the title would have read, "PS4 power designed as 2 prong because of overwhelmingly hugeness of every 3 prong" I would not have looked. I would have simply thought in my head well that's not accurate.

joeorc1670d ago (Edited 1670d ago )


Oh for the Love of Freaking God,

"a shame that it's a couple of paragraphs to explain something that is irrelevant."

you really need to read up on power regulation of PCB's to really get what this is doing, and yes it is a freaking big deal to reduction. when the cost's are in the billions over time when keeping the power requirements under a certain wattage to offset the cost's of not just power consumption of the unit, but also the etching on the board plus the stepping down of components on the board itself. from 2 prong to 3 prong saves costs in not only being able to make it smaller, its also allows you to use more sized components without excess Heat you would have to bleed off because of more power build up. Power regulation is quite important




"A 200+ Watt PS4 would employ a die so large Sony would end up losing a bunch of money on each one made. PS4 was almost certainly designed to restrict the cost of the machine based on the cost of the APU inside which is by far the most expensive single part in the machine."





Life span is usually measured in mean time between failures (MTBF). Higher MTBF ratings are preferable for longer device life and reliability. Quality construction consisting of industrial grade electrical components or a larger or higher speed fan can help to contribute to a higher MTBF rating by keeping critical components cool. Overheating is a major cause of PSU failure. Calculated MTBF value of 100,000 hours (about 11 years of continuous operation) is fairly common.
Power supplies for servers, industrial control, or other places where reliability is important may be hot swappable, and may incorporate N+1 redundancy; if N power supplies are required to meet the load requirement, one extra is installed to allow for swaps.

Hicken1670d ago

It's not irrelevant just because you don't understand how it's relevant.

This is the part where learning something new is awesome. It's no good to be told you're wrong, explained to WHY you're wrong, and still wanna stick with your wrong thinking.

Prime1571670d ago

You apparently haven't built your own computer, and thus have no idea what you are talking about.

moparful991670d ago

Your entire argument is weak.. the original phat ps3 was a 3 prong design and the internal power supply for it was very large as well as the connector.. Having a two prong design out of the gate will help the console shrink in future revisions which dramatically cuts down on costs and helps drive down end user prices.. Just because you dont see the point doesn't mean there isnt a valid one there... By the way laptops use external power supplies and thats why they are smaller and since when do tablets utilize 3 prong power cords??? All of them i have ever seen use a usb charge cable...

quaneylfc1669d ago

Yep it would be about a centimetre or to this site: ONE WHOLE AMAZING SUPERCALIFRAJILISTICEXPIALIDOS IASING CENTIMETRE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!

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pyramidshead1670d ago (Edited 1670d ago )

Hardware wizards. Sony knows their jam.

JaPo1670d ago

I'm highly impressed by the size and power consumption of the PS4, and I generally agree with you in terms of their consoles (although saying that I had three PS1s, three PS2s and three PS3s due mainly to worn down lasers), but I'm so confused as to the engineering decisions behind the Dualshock 4. It makes me want to personally confront the madcap Japanese bods who contributed to its design. Do Sony not realise that every single *honest* gamer would prefer better battery life and lower costs than a swipepad that we all know will see only limited use? What customer research led Sony to the conclusion that analogue face buttons weren't necessary or were any less necessary than a swipepad, and that a low quality microphone was useful? Did Sony not perform ample stress tests on the DS4 to ensure the thumbsticks would not wear away within weeks for some people? Unless MS own a patent on the particular design, why did Sony opt for the bizarrely engineered back buttons rather than standard triggers which better simulate a greater range of game mechanics? Did they not consider the ergonomic tradeoff in regards to the positioning Select and Options buttons and the inclusion of the swipepad? Did Sony really think the lightbar was a more convenient indicator of player number than the DS3 red LEDs? These are all questions that I ask as a Sony fan who is constantly perplexed at the absurd design choices of Japanese software developers and hardware manufacturers. I'd like to ask similar questions of Polyphony Digital who have let a franchise with incredible resources and potential stagnate so tragically.

joeorc1670d ago (Edited 1670d ago )


"I'm so confused as to the engineering decisions behind the Dualshock 4. It makes me want to personally confront the madcap Japanese bods who contributed to its design. Do Sony not realise that every single *honest* gamer would prefer better battery life and lower costs than a swipepad that we all know will see only limited use? What customer research led Sony to the conclusion that analogue face buttons weren't necessary or were any less necessary than a swipepad"

here is a hint:

The main development for games are smart devices and Tablets now, most of the 3rd party developers are developing for touch enabled smart devices, hell the new windows OS8 comes with touch screen control's built into the OS from the getgo.

THE PSVITA TV, Gaikai, PSNow, Cross Buy, remote play..they all have touch screen's or touch screen support built from the getgo in common, its not just about playing that game just on a touch screen device with that swipe pad means ..Oh' yeah the PS4 has touch screen controls built in.

JaPo1670d ago (Edited 1670d ago )

Even so, that doesn't justify including the touchpad at massive cost to the consumer, and it's still nowhere near a necessity as much as Sony and the computer industry make us think it is. This is particularly the case when one considers just how the touch screen is implemented and functions on the controller. What do you say to my other qualms? Sony is a business with its own interests at heart so perhaps I'm looking from the wrong angle, but how many PS4 owners would have so much as batted an eyelid if there was no touch screen included? My bet is very, very few.

kingPoS1670d ago


Your right! The only next gen console without 6DOF or any sort of touch pad is the Xbox One.

Gateway MT6706 2008

moparful991670d ago

Guess thats why the dualshock 4 is universally praised as the best controller Sony has ever made.. You keyboard warriors and those self appointed opinions of what constitutes a good design.. 99% of the people love the DS4 but somehow your opinion is to be regarded as defacto.. smh.

JaPo1670d ago (Edited 1670d ago )

I guess you were born in 1999, huh? It may be considered the best controller Sony has ever made but that doesn't invalidate each and every one of my points or indeed any of them. If anything, it shows it was 'universally' agreed that there was a lot to improve on. Believe me when I say I have always loved the Dualshock. Every iteration of it. This doesn't mean it's exempt from criticism or that ALL of the revisions from DS3 to DS4 were 'right'. No-one regards my opinion as de facto. I'm stating my opinion as an honest consumer who is entitled to ask these questions of electronic goods. Why don't you address my individual queries rather than casting them off as fanboyish/overly-entitled ramblings? Keyboard warrior? By criticising a controller? Lol.

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XiSasukeUchiha1670d ago

Sony Wizards they make magic!

WeAreLegion1670d ago

They're one of the greenest companies in the world. They always try to reduce power consumption.