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Customer Review

624 of 730 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars PlayStation 4 Review!, 29 Nov. 2013
This review is from: Sony PlayStation 4 500GB Console (Black) (Console)
I picked my PS4 up at my local GAME store launch party a good few hours ago, the unboxing took all of two minutes when i got home (smiley face). First thing to say is it looks and feels quality and has a good weighty feel to it for something so small. A lot smaller than i thought it would be but by and large on a par with the PS3 slim. The two tone look really suits it with the blue light in between as an indicator as to the status of the console. Port wise at the back you have Power, Gigabit Ethernet, optical audio, HDMI out and an AUX proprietary port for the PlayStation Camera. At the front is the slot loading bluray drive on/off and eject buttons (which are touch sensitive) and 2x USB 3.0 ports which are ideal for charging your controller from and if you so wish a 3rd party headset. At this point i will note that Sony have made the PS4 so that you can upgrade the hard drive without voiding warranty... the specs if you want to know are that it be greater than 160GB and no thicker than 9.5mm. Although it doesn't mention the spin speed the one that comes in the console runs at 5400RPM to reduce heat so i would advise you stick to that for good measure.

Finally onto what you get, the controller is a vast improvement, it now actually feels like a proper controller and the textured back of it feels very nice to hold. The trigger buttons now feel like proper triggers and have been positioned in such a way so your fingers rest on them perfectly. L1 and R1 buttons have been redesigned too and feel better. The thumb-sticks are perhaps the biggest improvement along with the trigger buttons and i can confirm that your fingers won't be slipping off due to the shape. Having tried the Xbox One controller i have to say i prefer the thumb-sticks on the duelshock 4 as they seem slightly bigger and hence you can rest a larger part of your thumb on it. There is a built-in mini speaker as well as a touch pad which game developers can use however they see fit, in a game by game basis. Select and Start buttons have been replaces with "share" and "options" buttons. The share button allows you to either capture past game-play footage (up to 15 minutes, a screenshot or even live stream footage to either twitch or ustream). The Options button kind of doubles as a start button. There is the inclusion of an in ear mono headset which simply plugs into the controller and i have to say it does feel cheap and basic but at least everyone will be catered for and won't have an excuse about not being able to talk to other players. If anything it will tide you over till you get something better after a few days/weeks and indeed would be good as backup so you can't really complain (at least they included one in the box). You also get a HDMI cable and mini usb to usb 3.0 cable to charge the controller. The battery is built in so no need for disposable batteries! (smiley face)

Setup was very quick and easy and i was up and running within 5 minutes, i include redeeming my current PlayStation account in that time too. Please note that there is a mandatory update when you first connect to the internet which did take a while but after that i was already at the dynamic menu and oh what an improvement it truly is compared to PS3! The menu system is easy to navigate, intuitive and fast to operate. Everything is where you yourself would think it is and there are no loading screens between menus. You can tell that Sony really wanted to push the social side of this console as everything from friends latest trophies, notifications, news and video uploads are available right from the off. Everything is also laid out in order of what you were doing last with the very last thing being the nearest to where you start. Above all this there is a kind of "cross media bar" where all the system info and settings can be found, again all very easy to get to and it's fast so those days of waiting around with the ps3 are long gone. Similarly the PlayStation store has been redesigned so it's even easier to navigate and also fast to operate, (ps3 owners will know how painfully slow accessing the store was on ps3, well that's a thing of the past).

To play online you will require PlayStation plus membership but because of all the included stuff that it brings you will never complain about what it offers. Everything from free games each month, updates that happen in the background, cloud saves and discounted games and DLCs are offered to PS+ members and i would argue you actually get your money back over the course of the year. For example in 2014 "Driveclub" will be free to all PS+ members, well that's a £50 game right there that they are including, and you get to keep the game once that month has gone! Indeed you can keep playing those games for as long as you want, so long as you remain a PS+ subscriber.

As i said earlier updates happen in the background while you are gaming and also when the system is in sleep mode, the controller can also be charged through the console while it sleeps too. Now there are mandatory game installations just like the ps3 but this time around they are much larger although i do need to point out that installation is extremely quick (under a minute per game). As for noise wise, the console runs very quiet most of the time although the main fan can be quite loud at certain points particularly when a game loads or when the console has been running for a good few hours. As for games, i have only managed to play Killzone: shadow fall for a limited time but have to say the graphics are stunningly beautiful, everything looks crisp and sharp! Game-play feels smooth and i like how they have used the touch-pad to control "OWL" a drone. Other things i wish to note are that the console has WIFI connectivity (which seems faster than the ps3) and the controller runs off Bluetooth technology so uses very little power. However, it's worth noting that the battery in the controller doesn't last as long as the DuelShock 3 did, i'm managing to get around 9-10 hours out of a full charge.

PROS: The Console looks beautiful and the User Interface is clean and crisp to look at * Controller is VASTLY improved * At long last we have cross game party chat * Background updates * quick install times * games i have played so far like black-light retribution (free to play for PS+ members) and Killzone are fantastic * you can get back to the main menu at any point mid game and it holds the game in suspension rather than quitting so you can instantly rejoin (double pressing the PS button takes you straight back to the game) * recharge controller while the console sleeps * for what you get i would argue the console is very good value

CONS: Party chat could sound clearer * included headset feels cheap to look at and use * PlayStation network needs to be made more stable especially as we are now mandated to pay for it if we want to play online * Sony need to reduce the amount of "maintenance" sessions it does and shorten their length or at the very least do them during the early hours of the morning rather than prime time during the day or evening.

VERDICT: I now have both of the next generation consoles and have to say that although I've only spent a relatively short period of time with the PS4 so far i'm very impressed at it's speed and ease of use along with it's potential gaming ability. The controller is a big plus this time around and feels like they actually listened to what gamers want. Will the inclusion of a touch-pad and speaker set the world alight? Probably not but it does open up possibilities for developers to get creative. I'm glad Sony didn't go down the Voice control path that Microsoft did, using a controller will always be faster and more reliable and i'm glad they put extra effort into the basics of the system rather than getting cocky. They've priced it right and it feels well put together, you feel like you're getting a quality package and from one gamer to another i can fully recommend this to you.

I hope you enjoy many happy years of gaming with this, it's a great time to be a gamer. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!!!


UPDATE 27th December 2013: It is only fair to point out that my review is of my own personal experience using the PS4 and i have to say i'm still enjoying the experience and still fully recommend this console to you. However, it is also fair to point out that a relatively small number of people have bought a PS4 and suffered a hardware failure of some kind, this is unfortunate and obviously must be aggravating for the people concerned, more so if it was intended as a Christmas present, i can only hope that Sony or Amazon (or whichever retailer you got it from) can help you out in a reasonable time frame. I will finish by saying every console launch over the past 10 years has had problems, the Xbox 360 for example was plagued with hardware malfunctions back in 2005 when it first came out with failure rates as high as 12%. It is worth pointing out that the official failure rate of the PS4 based on official figures so far is around 0.4%, which is on a par with any consumer electronics device.

UPDATE 2nd April 2014: There have been more software updates to the console to improve how the system works over the past few weeks and months and also to improve stability online although they still need to find better ways of implementing them rather than shutting everything down for the whole day. Besides that I'm very much enjoying the experience and still very much recommend it to you, inFAMOUS: Second Son is the latest game I've been playing and is great fun!

UPDATE 10th July 2014: Everything working as it should and still enjoying the experience. Some great games have come out recently and the software updates keep making the system better and better to use!
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Showing 1-10 of 64 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 29 Nov 2013, 09:50:53 GMT
Dadbak234 says:
Good review many thanks, unless ive missed somthing, can you confirm whether or not it is possible to talk to your friends online using thier ps3?

Many thanks

In reply to an earlier post on 29 Nov 2013, 11:48:17 GMT
MrE says:
hi, Sadly you won't be able to talk to your friends on ps3 although you will be able to see them online, follow what they are doing and send them written messages.

Regards, MrE

Posted on 29 Nov 2013, 11:50:56 GMT
Hi MrE, many thanks for your great review, as I see you also reviewed the Xbox one as well. I have a question for you; If you had to choose between the 2 consoles which one would you choose and why?


In reply to an earlier post on 29 Nov 2013, 12:15:50 GMT
MrE says:
Hi, i'm currently on a lunch break so you posted that question at the right time hehe .... This is really tough as while i like the simplicity and ease of use of the PS4 it is very obvious that the Xbox One does have more features than just gaming although unless you have a satellite tv box right next to your console, many of those features become unusable.

If i was starting off in gaming today without any precursors then i would chose the PS4 without a doubt. Why? well it's better value and has been designed to be a games console first before anything else. The exclusive games are more varied and the indie (independent developers) library of games coming will be superior. They've made the console easy and quick to use and while the Xbox One is very quick too, it can get confusing as to where you are suppose to go and the fact you have to use Kinect for certain features is off putting.

Best luck in choosing your console, you can't go wrong either way but certainly right now the ps4 is a better buy! Regards, MrE

In reply to an earlier post on 29 Nov 2013, 12:52:42 GMT
C. W. Evans says:
Hi I was wondering it may seem like a silly question but I have very limited space on my unit where I have my TV so I was wondering would it be completely safe and alright if I was to put the TV on top of the PS4(of course I mean the PS4 flat rather then upright) or will I have to make room some where else?

In reply to an earlier post on 29 Nov 2013, 13:22:13 GMT
MrE says:
Hi, you will definitely have to make room elsewhere, the ps4 is not designed to carry weight on-top of it. I would steer clear of doing that. Best of luck!

Regards, MrE

In reply to an earlier post on 29 Nov 2013, 13:25:04 GMT
C. W. Evans says:
thanks might have to invest buying the stand for it then, am I right in thinking that the wires for the PS3 (the plug and HDMI cable) will work on the PS4?

In reply to an earlier post on 29 Nov 2013, 14:49:12 GMT
G. J. HAWES says:
Hi, the HDMI cable will work but it a different power cable.

Regards Gareth

In reply to an earlier post on 29 Nov 2013, 14:56:43 GMT
MrE says:
Although i'm not at my console so can't check the power cable, the HDMI cable will work as they are all the same! There might be a slight difference to the power cord as "G.J. Hawes" has stated but i would need to check on that. Regards MrE

In reply to an earlier post on 29 Nov 2013, 15:07:10 GMT
Last edited by the author on 29 Nov 2013, 15:08:45 GMT
G. J. HAWES says:
The power cable for the PS4 is like the PS1,PS2 and Sky Box power cable. I believe it might be the same as a PS3 slim, however i'm not sure as i dont own one. It has the small connection at the end shaped like a 'figure-of-eight' with two holes. It is not the same as the PS3 original or Xbox 360 power cable.

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