PlayStation 4 Neo Specs And Dev Guidelines Leaked Via Internal Document

Following rumors of a more powerful console in Sony's not-too-distant future, one that will be capable of playing games at a 4K Ultra HD resolution, the Japanese electronics maker last month opted to confirm it is indeed in development. Called PlayStation 4 Neo, the upgraded console will bring better hardware to the console scene to meet the needs of gaming on a television with four times as many pixels as a Full HD 1080p display. What's it going to take to game at 4K in the living room? A leaked internal document outlines some interesting specs of the new PS4 Neo.

Before we get to that, it's worth pointing out that even though the PS4 Neo will be a faster and burlier machine than its predecessor, it's not replacing the original PlayStation 4, nor will it alter the PS4's lifecycle. Sony President Shuhei Yoshida recently made that clear, and it's something that's reiterated in the leaked documents in no uncertain terms.

Sony PlayStation 4

"Neo is a high-end version of the PlayStation 4 console. Neo and 'original PlayStation 4' will coexist in the marketplace," one of the slides reads. It goes on to state that all PS4 titles released in and after October 2016 should support both the original PS4 and the forthcoming PS4 Neo system. We'll come back to this in a moment, but for now, let's jump into the hardware.

PlayStation 4 Neo Specs

Assuming the leaked document is up to date with Sony's current plans, the PS4 Neo will use the same Jaguar cores as the original PS4, but clocked 500MHz faster, with 8 cores racing along at 2.1GHz (up from 1.6GHz). It will also sport the same 8GB GDDR5 memory as the regular PS4, though memory bandwidth jumps from 176GB/s to 218GB/s, a 1.24x improvement.

The more significant upgrade will be the GPU. According to the above slide, the PS4 Neo will use an improved version of AMD's GCN compute units (CUs), with twice the number of CUs at 36 instead of 18. They'll also be clocked faster—911MHz versus 800MHz. The net result is a 2.3x improvement in FLOPs (or Floating Point calculations).

Getting back to the games, it will be up to developers to decide how best to take advantage of the upgraded resources, so long as they don't leave PS4 gamers out in the cold. In addition to 4K support, the PS4 Neo will be able to deliver higher framerates, more stable framerates, improved graphics fidelity, and additional graphics features.

Sony's internal document indicates that legacy titles will player better too. Existing games will be able to run unmodified on the PS4 Neo, though if a developer decides to issue a patch, legacy titles can be upgraded with native support for the PS4 Neo.

No release date has yet been set, though Sony is targeting sometime in late 2017.