What we like and don't like about the PS5's bold but divisive design
Sony unveiled the official design of the PS5 to divisive reactions. It was easy to make a meme out of it, as the internet quickly did, but that would have been the case no matter what it looked like. We had a video call going between members of the Android Central team while we were covering the event, and it became apparent that writer Samuel Tolbert and I had different opinions on the design. We decided to talk through some of those thoughts below.
Jennifer: I like the design. shrug
Samuel: ...Why? It's over-designed and trying too hard. It looks like a fan render our competition would use writing up 4chan rumors.
Jennifer: I think that's why I like it? It's not something you'd usually see from a company like Sony. And it's just something different and way better than the brick that's the Xbox Series X.
Samuel: It's a console. It's meant to play games and then other media. Practicality and functionality take priority. It doesn't look like you can even lay it on its side without the stand! It's taller than the Xbox Series X. I'm not sure how I'm going to make it fit my entertainment center.
Jennifer: Fair point. The size is definitely an issue and I get wanting to go for practicality and functionality like Xbox did, but I don't think you can ignore the aesthetic. You can have it both ways, even though the PS5 looks too big for my entertainment center as well.
Samuel: I think another aspect that's bugging me is the two-tone color scheme. I like the DualSense, but it would be better either solid white or solid black. I hope we see some interesting special edition consoles — they might look better.
Jennifer: See the two-tone color scheme is another aspect I really like about it. I think it works. We've had plain white or plain black consoles in the past and I just find them boring. This is mixing it up and I appreciate that. Though I would also like to see some special edition consoles.
Samuel: There've been some cryptic comments from PlayStation execs about how it can be customized. What if the plastic parts that are jutting off can be swapped out, like the Xbox 360 faceplates?
Jennifer: I'd definitely like that. I never swapped the faceplates on my 360 but I did put a ton of decals on it. I'd also worry if they can be removed that people might break the console accidentally.
Samuel: People will be people but it's a fair concern. My hand wringing over the design aside, I want to be clear: As long as it stays cool and doesn't sound like a jet engine like the PS4 Pro, I'll be happy. I want to see an official teardown soon to see just what kind of cooling solution Cerny and his team came up with.
Jennifer: Yeah, I agree. If it sounds really loud or overheats then that's just a huge flaw in its design. It needs a good cooling solution, and as much as I hate the way the Xbox Series X looks, I have to give it to Microsoft for making that a priority.
Samuel: I will say the digital-only version looks better than the one with a disc drive, it's more symmetrical. Unfortunately, I'll have to get the one with a drive because of my PS4 games on disc that I might want to play. Which one are you getting?
Jennifer: I'm hoping they'll have a solution for people with physical discs who want to get the digital-only edition, but I don't know what that solution would be. I think just because of my job I'll get the one with the disc drive. I have very few physical PS4 games but you never know when a company will send one over for review.
What do you think?
You have our thoughts on the PS5's design, but what do you think of it? While we don't know the official dimensions just yet, estimates aren't looking too kind. It appears to be quite large, and as much as you can appreciate the aesthetic itself, that's not something that will fit on a lot of entertainment stands.
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Jennifer Locke has been playing video games nearly her entire life. You can find her posting pictures of her dog and obsessing over PlayStation and Xbox, Star Wars, and other geeky things.
Woman: "It's pretty because it's different!"
Man: "It's ugly because it's pretty and different!"