The PS4 Pro and Scorpio have changed the traditional console cycle for the first time since the NES made video game consoles successful again. Sure we’ve seen constant ‘slim’ models and redesigns, but the visual processing power has always remained the same. The Pro and Scorpio are changing the game by adding 4K resolutions, HDR, and a few more luxury features to entice an upgrade from gamers searching for the cutting edge.
I currently own a PS4 Slim after trading my PS4 and $100 to Eb Games as part of a promotion they had. I did it purely for protection as I bought my first PS4 used and wanted to re-up the warranty. The Slim is fine, but doesn’t look as sleek with the pure matte finish and I find the new power button either inconsistent or confusing. However, I’m only interested in how long it will last, and historically, newer versions of consoles have fared well.
I have zero interest in the Pro however, and am fascinated at who is making the upgrade and how this will shape the console landscape moving forward. Here are my reasons.
1 – I don’t plan on getting a 4K tv
I love technology, but also love a great deal. For me, that usually means staying outside of the cutting edge, sometimes by quite a bit. I’d much rather put my money into a larger screen (or games/consoles) than gimmicks like 3D, clunky netflix interfaces, or 4K resolutions that are still lacking in content. In a few years 4K might be the norm, but the state of media right now feels more about accessibility than quality. We stream through content so quickly the business model is becoming more about quantity than quality.
I’ll always watch visually powerful pieces (Star Wars, Mad Max etc) in as good quality as I can, but for now at least, 4K is not beckoning to me.
I’d much rather put the extra cash into a new console or games instead of improving what is already great.
2 – Inconsistent performance
The first batch of Pro-enabled games were unsurprisingly not impressive. Reports of Pro games running worse than vanilla was the worst kind of marketing. These were games already late in development that had Pro-features tacked on and it’s understandable they weren’t fully optimized. Games designed from the ground up with Pro in mind will obviously fare better, but the initial output has me extra cautious.
My biggest fear is a loss of over quality across all versions due to splitting precious development resources for multiple SKUs.
3 – Why not get an Xbox instead?
Like I already mentioned, I’d rather spend extra money on a new experience instead of a slightly upgraded one. Selling an old PS4 for a Pro is probably pretty close to just buying a new Xbox (or snagging a used one from someone getting a Scorpio!). I’d love to have access to a new roster of exclusives (Tacoma!), not to mention play online with A90sKids Lachlan and Matthew O that are currently on Team Green.
I made a satirical video awhile back as a PS4 super fan criticizing the Xbox controller, but after using it for a few months with my PC, I was shocked by how foreign the PS4 controller started to feel.
4 – Missing features
I view the Pro as a luxury model that made a few awkward compromises.
If I was creating the ultimate 4K media experience, I’m pretty sure I’d want a UHD Blu-Ray player at the center. Online is the future but great internet isn’t everywhere yet, and many gamers love collecting physical copies of their media. It looks great on a shelf and it always works.
The PS2 dominated because it was the first affordable DVD player. The PS3’s blu-ray player lost Sony hundreds of dollars per console sold but helped in the battle against HD-DVD.
5 – Wait-and-see
I’m trepidatious to see how this half-step will affect console generations moving forward. The PC market has dealt with incremental upgrades for decades but I find the reliable simplicity of consoles appealing. We’ve seen terribly optimized console ports already (PS3 Skyrim) but it’s been pretty smooth sailing for the most part. The day I read “basically unplayable on a non-Pro PS4 will be a angry day indeed”.
Lol. 1. I got my 50 inch 4k Sony Bravia for $700. Pretty affordable considering our 60 inch 3d tv cost close to $2,000. 2. Inconsistent performance is something we see in literally every console ever made. Scorpio will have games that have inconsistent performance. 3. Controller scheme scientifically goes to Sony bc its scientifically proven that the brain works faster and more efficiently when the hands are doing similar actions to one another. For example: as a kid u may have tried patting your head and rubbing your belly at the same time or vice versa. It tripped your mind up a little doing this. Once in awhile u will get confused and mess up. Same goes for the controller layout. Sony has parallel analog sticks while xbox has 1 stick up towards the top and 1 towards the bottom. This causes confusion in the brain. Even if u think u have gotten used to it, it still causes a slight delay in the human brain. Parallel analog sticks is simply easier for the brain to process. U can argue all u want but its been scientifically proven over and over again. 4. I think Ive maybe put 2 dvd’s into my ps4 in the last 2 years. Blu ray is becoming irrelevant w the addition of streaming services. I dont need a blu ray player when I can simply watch all my movies without a disc.
1. That’s a great value for your TV, even a cheapskate like me would go for that deal.
2. Id agree the bar for performance has slipped over the last generation. Many of the games I’ve played have been choppy. My main point was that the reports were unfortunate when marketing the pro, whether true or not.
3. Can’t argue with science and i loved the logical breakdown. But I do find the Xbox controller more comfortable to hold for long periods.
4. I’ve never put a Blu Ray into my ps4s and only get games physical to resell when finished. It’s a point my imaginary rich self with an imaginary ultra gaming room, might have.
Thanks for the great comment.
I have a PS4 Pro and is just big and noisy. When it comes to graphics you won’t see a damn difference compared to the base PS4. In fact, when you run the games with the faux 4k the frame-rate of most if not all games gets worse. The Pro is pointless.
Clearly you do not actually own a PS4 Pro…
I don’t even wanna know what kind of tv u have. Pro looks great on my LGB6.
He doesn’t have a Pro, he’s regurgitating the false belief that Pro games perform worse and is upset that it isn’t native 4k.
#1 i dont like jrogs of any kind.
#2 performance(ill agree)
#3 psn is crap.
#4 its upscale 4k thats needs a patch just to upscale.xbox one s upscales all games to 4k.
#5 sonys customer service
ill take an xbox one s over even the xbox scorpio.casual gamers arnt worried about native 4k if you are buy a pc.
#1 your loss
#2 performance is excellent
#3 it’s not, only Xbox fanboys say it is
#4 nonsense, Pro upscales all games without a patch and renders games in higher resolutions than 1080p with a patch
#5 that’s silly, never had issues with them, this is rather subjective, every customer service will have bad stories told, even Xbox’s….
Fair points by the author. I have a ps4 pro, and the reason I have one is because I have a 4k setup and I don’t mind paying for the console to get the best version of Sony’s exclusives running on my setup. I bought one primarily on the strength of Sony’s first parties, which I have always enjoyed, so that alone was enough for me to put my money down.
But to each their own….I certainly don’t think if I didn’t have 4k capable audio/video equipment I would have bought a ps4 pro as the benefits would be marginal over what the ps4 offers…..but I think that is a testament to how well Sony’s exclusives show on the o.g. ps4.
Thanks for sharing your perspective. If I didn’t already have a PS4 and was also in the market for a 4K tv I would probably pitch for the extra as well.
Sony’s first-party has always been great and it’s extremely strong for this gen. The 360 was great for indies and other exclusives but they’re pretty thin this time around while Sony has rounded out that part of their roster, along with the great Japanese stuff they keep localizing.
Already being quite happy with my PS4 and tv setup is the main reason I haven’t felt the Pro pull. But like Brad and MiamiBeachMedMan mentioned, it’s all about the 4K setup. I didn’t do any research on current 4K tv prices as I’m not in the market for one, but knowing a Sony 4K can be had for $700 is a game-changer.
Thanks to the commenters who shared their perspectives with intelligence.
Ahhhhhhh Sh!t……………. don’t be comin up in no PlayStation article with that logic and smart talk.
And not using your pre approved talking points from the bias gaming media!?!?!?!
Expect some sony propagandist to visit soon.
I was planning on getting a Pro but it doesn’t do 4k and had no 4k blu ray. then MS showed they are coming with their own VR solution so there is no real point for me.
Many people like to be on teams, but often console superfans become worse than football/soccer hooligans. When investing thousands of $$$ the personal bias can also easily be swayed.
Thankfully however, we’ve had mostly intelligent conversation here and I’ll be staying away from the N4G comments, which would be like putting my brain into a blender.
My point about getting an Xbox instead of the Pro is mainly because I already have a baseline PS4, and would rather have two platforms, than an upgrade. Many negative comments here seem to miss that.
Thanks for your comment.
Oh yeah…… the Xbox controller is actually a better controller. Ps4 controllers are based off of a slap stick design that they cant shake because their fans became to use to it. The first PlayStation 1 controller was designed perfect for games of the time. The analog stick movement became popular do to the N64. Sony just stuck 2 analog sticks on the controller where they could best fit without having to destroy the function of the original controller. Its was never designed with optimal usage and function in mind. They never changed it because their consumers like the familiarity more than function.
The Xbox controller went through several design changes to the one we have now is actually perfect (I am talking about ergonomics function and positioning the Dpad patent situation has been a struggle but the their last 2 solution have been stellar) especially the Elite.
Anyone that plays with a Xbox One controller then goes back to the others, if they are honest with themselves will know the Xbox controller is better.
Interesting! I hadn’t heard that angle before but it makes a lot of sense.
I skipped 360 so the XB1 controller on my PC has been my first non-Sony controller usage since original Xbox. Now the PS4 controller feels a bit too wide and I don’t grasp it fully, rather it sits ‘up’ a bit in my hands, which gets uncomfortable after a time.
Thanks for the history.
Generally speaking, I don’t upgrade to “new” models of systems, unless they happen to be the first I bought in a line. The exception being a PS2 Slim, back when those were new. For example, I still haven’t upgraded to a XB1 Slim, nor have I fallen prey to the many iterations of the 3DS (my original purchase of a 3DS XL is fine). The PS4 Pro is essentially that, just with a bit more power and some noticeable upgrades to visuals.
I won’t deny that some games look superb on the PS4 Pro, but nowadays each console is pretty impressive in its own right. As far as 4K goes, the XB1 Slim is a more economic decision, and Sony shot themselves in the foot by toting 4K as an advantage for the Pro and not having it be native. However, I don’t really have the best set up, and the 50 inch LED I normally game on is sufficient.
I’m not buying a PS4 Pro because the load fans on my PS4 don’t bug me enough to replace the system entirely. I’m not buying an XB1 Slim because the weight of the original and its occasional hiccups don’t urge me to spend another $300.
I wouldn’t spend $300 dollars for someone to tune up my functional laptop, so I’m not going to spend $400 for a better version of something I already have.