In one word: Since the launch of the PlayStation 5, Sony has tried to mitigate its supply problems with slight revisions to reduce grams of weight and production costs. A new shot reveals that the console has received its first shrink, which should help Sony reduce its power consumption and improve its profit margin.
An analysis of the die in Angstronomics’ latest PS5 review reveals which uses TSMC’s 6nm EUV N6 process, transitioned from the launch console N7. The change in the PS5 CFI-1202 model accompanies other alterations to the motherboard and cooling system.
The 6nm chip, codenamed Oberon Plus, has a 15 percent smaller die than the original Oberon. Moving of about 300 square meters. mm to 260 m2 mm should allow Sony to make about 20 percent more chips at the same cost. The N6 chip also draws less power than the N7, possibly reducing how much the console adds to power bills.
Last year, the first revision of the PS5 (CFI-1100) tried to save money by slimming it down, which led to compromises in the cooling system, causing it to run slightly hotter than the launch model. Earlier this month, the CFI-1200 model went on sale, and breakdowns showed it shed hundreds of grams from the launch console with a redesigned motherboard, new heatsink, and smaller cooler. Die shrinkage at 1202 should also reduce power consumption by about 10 percent.
The current generation of consoles has faced unprecedented manufacturing challenges, primarily stemming from the effects of the pandemic on supply chains and consumer demand. The PS5 is still a tough thing to buy as its second birthday approaches.
Last year, Sony said the disc drive-equipped PS5 model had become profitable, but the digital-only version was still selling at a loss. However, Sony raised the price of all models last month in all regions except North America, likely due to increases in production costs, something Microsoft and Nintendo have so far avoided with their consoles. Hardware revisions like CFI-1202 can help Sony maintain profitability and ultimately pass the savings on to consumers.