The PlayStation 5 teardown video shows removable side panels, dust holes and how to install an SSD

It seems like Sony are really starting to open up about the nitty-gritty details of the PlayStation 5 hardware this week, with a detailed teardown of the console revealing that the console has much-rumoured removable side panels and showing how to access the slot to install an M.2 NVME SSD to expand the console’s internal storage.

The teardown starts with the PS5 in its upright configuration, allowing Yasuhiro Ootori, VP Mechanical Design Dept. to demonstrate that the base is secured in this orientation with a screw. However, it also clips onto part of the back of the case, allowing for it to still be secure when the console is horizontal. Instead of leaving an unsightly screw hole (heaven forbid!), the base stores a little magnetic screwhole cover in its snazzy rotatable design.

To get at the console’s innards, you remove the entirety of the console’s side panels – we can surely expect these to come in different colours sometime soon, if you want an all black console to hide away in your TV cabinet. This reveals the large fan in the upper left corner of the console. The black plastic shroud to the console’s innards feature some dust catcher holes where you should be able to vacuum out dust that has been caught up in the console to maintain its quiet cooling.

The SSD expansion slot is hidden behind the unit’s shroud, with a removable panel revealing a standard M.2 SSD slot, capable of accommodating all standardised lengths of SSD.

The fan is a real chonker. It’s 120mm in diameter, but her 45mm thickness and is a double-sided intake blower that should effectively push air through the rest of the console. It’s a huge step up over the fans found in the current PlayStation 4 designs, that’s for sure.

Removing more of the case, and the PS5’s huge motherboard is revealed with all the components nicely spread out. It’s confirmed that the PS5 uses liquid metal for the TIM to allow for long-term high cooling performance and transfer to the heatsink. Which is absolutely massive. Made up of several distinct units of aluminium fins and with copper heatpipes connecting them, it’s a work of art. The size of it allows Sony to get the same level of performance as the vapour chamber heatsinks used in Xbox One X and Xbox Series X, though sacrifices size to get there.

Finally, the built in power supply is rated at 350W.

Source: PS Blog

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  1. Blimey that’s huge, I may need an extension to the house.

  2. That heatsink is huge! Also the PCB seems rather elegantly laid out.

  3. I’ve been looking forward to the teardown since Mark Cerny’s presentation way back in March but I’ll be watching it again when there’s an English translation or subtitles.

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen a heatsink as massive as that, but like you say its a work of art.

    • There are english subs – hit the CC button the YouTube video

      • Cheers Tuff, I didn’t know that.

    • Yeah, the heatsink is very interesting. I do wonder how it works out in terms of cost, though. That’s a lot more copper and aluminium than the Series X vapor chamber cooling block. Sony must be hoping they can shrink that significantly and cut cost through some internal revisions in the first couple of years.

  4. I see it’s still a major PITA to replace the RTC battery – why they can’t make them more accessible is beyond me given its the only part that’s likely to need replacing if you keep your console for more than 5 years. At least the fan is easily accessible to clean like in the PS4 pro, and the extra NVMe drive is easy to get at.

    Strikes me as very reminiscent of the original PS3 fat though, which isn’t a good thing when they proved themselves to be not that reliable in the long term, or even medium term for some…

    The problem I foresee though is that manufacturing processes haven’t got anywhere to really go (already on 7nm for this presumably) so I’m concerned that a slim redesign won’t be able to be much smaller without smaller heatsinks but noisier fans. Its not like the PS3 when they went from 90/65nm chips down to 45nm in the slim.

    • I don’t see that as a problem – 5nm manufacturing already exists at TSMC and is having better yields than 7nm did at when you compare the stage it is at compared to 7nm

      7nm to 5nm is just like 70nm to 50nm it’s more about % difference than absolute difference

      Further out, 3nm is on TSMC’s roadmap for volume manufacturing in the 2nd half of 2022

  5. Looks like they have built in planned obsolescence. The SSD looks like it’s baked into the motherboard. When the SSD dies what happens to the system? Probably have to change the motherboard or buy a new PS5….

    They could have at least implemented it as an NVME M.2 so it could be replaced with a supported new model.

    • You’d have to do a serious amount of installs and uninstalls to expire the life of the SSD cells. I would also have thought that if it does become unusable then the software can switch to using the NVMe drive instead. If the SSD chips themselves fail then it probably is a new motherboard but then that goes for every chip on there…

  6. Wow, it’s massive! Very encouraging that all the white panels come off, I really want a black one. Great video.

  7. USBs at the back, a huge fan, sound-deadening around the disc drive, dedicated places to vacuum out dust, built-in power supply and that stand with the little bit to cover the whole. Engineering wizardry. Lovely.

    • I think the heatsink and the dual-side intake fan are fascinating, the vacuum slots are pretty neat too, but USB at the back and a built in power supply are pretty basic.

  8. Every time I see the thing, it looks even more enormous than the last time.

    And it looks like that’s mostly due to the heatsink, PSU and fans. I guess that explains all that talk from Japan the other day about how quiet and cool it is.

    And the stand with it’s space to store the screw and the little cap for the hole is cute. I also quite like the way the 4 shapes are there on the case when you clip it in place to have it horizontally.

    Plus 2 holes to vacuum all the dust out of. No excuse to not keep it clean now.

    And is that 3 256GB SSD chips in there?

    The whole thing looks enormous, but incredibly well designed.

    • The reports on how cool it runs is not good news for MS if the comments from ‘influencers’ are correct. The XSX runs hot with some saying it’s like having a heater in the room, and that’s running this gen games. One influencer had reportedly burnt their hand on the SSD expansion slot. Also reports saying it runs hot when idle.

      • That’s one way to deal with all those comments saying it looks like a fridge, I guess.

      • The temperature thing is anecdotal on both sides. The larger size of the PS5 and the multi-layered case and shroud will probably mean it feels cooler to the touch after a play session, but it’s still dispersing around the same amount of heat from the APU. I think both have said their consoles run at full power all of the time when gaming, BC or otherwise.

        Both consoles will also be warm when in standby mode, because the chipset is running without the fan, though Xbox One X standby does seem to be warmer and “on” more than PS4.

        And finally, NVME SSDs all get very hot. It’s why they have heatspreading stickers, come with big heatsinks, etc. etc. The XSX expansion is very compact and metal, so they probably need to put a warning label to say not to touch for a while after use.

  9. Managed to get one pre ordered from base today as I got an invite. Now do I want one day one?..

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