PlayStation 4 vs PlayStation 4 Slim: What's the difference?

While all eyes were on Sony's big PlayStation 4 Pro during the announcement, a new slimmer PlayStation 4 snuck onto store shelves. Instead of being called a Slim model like previous generations, it's simply also called PlayStation 4.

The goal is to replace the current PlayStation 4 on store shelves eventually, leaving only this new model and the PlayStation 4 Pro for shoppers to choose between. Until that happens, there are a pair of boxes labeled PlayStation 4 on shelves and it's not entirely clear what the differences between them are. Here's what you need to know!

In keeping with Sony's previous slim PlayStation releases, the goal with this new PS4 is mostly aesthetic. Sony claims the new PlayStation 4 consumes less power, but the big feature here is size. The new PlayStation 4 is noticeably thinner, and slightly narrower. As you can see by comparing the two side by side, the updated design drops the even split on either side of the big black line in the middle of the console and instead makes the top way thinner. This updated design is also matte black instead of glossy on half, and the under side of the casing swaps out streaks of anti-skid rubber for PlayStation themed anti-skid marks.

As silly as this may seem, the biggest update to the new PlayStation 4 design is the inclusion of discrete buttons on the face of the console. These two buttons, instead of the touch sensitive strips on the face, make it abundantly clear when you're powering on/off and ejecting a disk. It's a fairly small update in the grand scheme of things, but anyone who regularly tapped the front of the original PlayStation 4 only to have nothing happen will welcome the change.

Sony's DualShock 4 controller has also received a slight update, though you wouldn't know it by looking at them powered off. The touch pad in the center of the controller now shows you a sliver of light coming from the light bar. This means you know when the controller is producing light without looking at the back of the controller, and no extra power is consumed in the process. It's a nice little detail, but not something that will send most folks scrambling to replace their existing controllers.

PlayStation 4

The new PlayStation 4, which is currently being sold in a 500GB bundle with Uncharted 4, is exactly what we've come to expect from Sony with its "slim" releases. It's a physical update so this standard PlayStation 4 looks like a sibling to the PlayStation 4 Pro. It looks nice unless you're a fan of the white version of the PlayStation 4, and as the packaging suggests it's everything you need to get ready for PlayStation VR. Just like choosing between this new PlayStation 4 and the PlayStation 4 Pro, the biggest reason anyone would choose the original version over this newer version is price.

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Russell Holly

Russell is a Contributing Editor at Android Central. He's a former server admin who has been using Android since the HTC G1, and quite literally wrote the book on Android tablets. You can usually find him chasing the next tech trend, much to the pain of his wallet. Find him on Facebook and Twitter