The latest render is a little more unusual than most as it envisions what the PS5’s heatsink might look like. It’s not as exciting as some full console concept designs we’ve seen, but a heatsink is a very important part of a games console, and can often dictate a console’s overall design.
The heatsink renders popped up on Reddit (opens in new tab) and are fan-made rather than leaks from official images. But theu showcase a two-tiered design with what looks like copper piping connecting the bottom tier to the top.
From this, we’d hazard a guess that the heatsink works by channeling heat from the bottom section which will sit on the PS5’s chip, and then push that up into the top tier. This area will likely be more exposed to airflow from the console’s fans, which will then blow the hot air away from the console’s silicon innards.
Having plenty of cooling will be an important factor in the console’s design, as it will allow for the PS5 to bring all its power and ray-tracing capabilities to bear on games. If the console gets too hot, then thermal throttling can occur, whereby the performance of a chip is reduced in order to prevent it from getting too hot and getting damaged.
A big heatsink could also be the key to creating a PS5 that’s pretty quiet even when running at full power. Anyone with a moderately old PS4 (opens in new tab) will know it can get a bit distracting when the console’s fans really crank up, so if the PS5 can keep cool yet quiet, then it could be an ace up the next-generation console sleeve.
The heatsink appears to have more of horizontal surface area than a vertical surface area. If this render is at all close to what the PS5’s heatsink might actually be like, then we could expect the console to be designed to sit horizontally. That may lead to a strikingly different design from the Xbox Series X, which has been designed to be positioned vertically.