PS4 Pro vs. PS4: Which PlayStation is Right For You?

Sony currently offers two versions of the PlayStation 4, and while they both look like elegant high-tech hamburgers, they're actually pretty different.

The $299 PS4 Slim (which is now simply known as PS4) replaced the original model with a slightly shrunk-down design. The $399 PS4 Pro is a 4K entertainment machine that can play games and movies in ultra-high resolution. So which one should you buy?

PS4 Slim

The PS4 Slim is the latest version of the standard PS4, with a design that Sony says is 30 percent smaller, 16 percent lighter and consumes 30 percent less power than the launch model. So unless you really need those few inches of extra space, folks who already own a PS4 have virtually no reason to buy the Slim.

At $299, however, the Slim is the cheapest barrier of entry for aspiring PS4 owners who want to play some Uncharted 4 or Horizon: Zero Dawn. Also, the Pro won't do you much good if you don't have a 4K television, so if you're on an extra-tight budget, go with the Slim.

PS4 Pro

If you don't have a PS4 yet, own a 4K television and can spend a little more, you should absolutely go for the PS4 Pro. For $100 more, you get a console capable of playing games and streaming movies in 4K.

The PS4 Slim (Left) and PS4 Pro (Right). Photo: Mike Andronico/Tom's GuideThe PS4 Slim (Left) and PS4 Pro (Right). Photo: Mike Andronico/Tom's Guide

So should existing PS4 owners upgrade to the Pro? That's a tougher call. The ever-growing list of PS4 Pro enhanced games includes Horizon: Zero Dawn, The Witcher 3, Injustice 2, Uncharted 4, Destiny 2 and Resident Evil 7, so it all depends on what you play and how badly you want to see those games in shiny 4K. Naturally, due to its extra power, the PS4 Pro is notably chunkier than the PS4 Slim.

PlayStation VR and HDR

The PlayStation VR headset works on any PS4, though you'll get the smoothest virtual reality experience possible on the Pro. Both the PS4 and PS4 Pro support High Dynamic Range for richer, brighter colors on supported TVs.

Game Library

One thing you won't have to factor in when choosing your PS4 is game selection. All current and upcoming PS4 games will work on PS4, PS4 Slim and PS4 Pro — the only difference is they might look a little prettier on the Pro.

Bottom Line

All in all, the PS4 Slim is a good budget buy, while the PS4 Pro is a wise choice for gamers with 4K televisions who want the very best experience available. You also shouldn't forget about Microsoft's $249 Xbox One S, which is the only current console with a 4K Blu-ray player and offers HDR gaming, as well as the $499 Xbox One X, which offers even more 4K power than the PS4 Pro for a more premium price.

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  • NEO_2_
    What I want to know is. If I buy a PS4 Pro? In 1080p will it look the same as a Ps4/Ps4slim? Because from what I'm reading is that the Pro version is just to support 4k resolution. So if you plug a Ps4 Pro into a 1080p tv will it give me a benifit?
  • NEO_2_
    If I plug a Ps4 Pro into a 1080p tv? What benefit will I have vs a ps4 slim?
  • Bruno_23
    It will not run games in 4k, it can stream video but not games. Thus comes the HDR, "it's almost 4k".