5 things you need to know about Sony's slim new PlayStation 4

It's not the Pro model, but the standard PS4 has lost some weight

Sony PlayStation 4 Slim

Although dramatically overshadowed by the long-awaited announcement of the PlayStation 4 Pro, Sony's other revelation shouldn't be overlooked.

Leaked weeks before today's event, the slim PlayStation 4 is a trimmed-down version of the brilliant console, effectively squeezing those three-year-old guts into a smaller package. And aside from the visual shift, it's also cheaper, making this an ideal entry-level console.

There are other tweaks amidst the nips and tucks, so if you're not ready to spend for a Pro, here's why you might consider a PS4 Slim for your holiday wish list instead.

UPDATE: we've now tested the new console! Check out our review of the PlayStation 4 Slim here

1) It's the PS4... but slim

Yup, it's right there in the title. Like all previous PlayStation consoles, the PS4 has a brand new revision that trims down the overall footprint of the first version – in this case, taking about 20% of the heft away in the process.

The PlayStation 4 was already a fairly svelte console, certainly compared to the original Xbox One, but the curious angles made it a bit larger than maybe it needed to be. Now in this revised format, it's a little more compact from all angles, meaning it's more likely to squeeze into a trim entertainment center. It also has some nice PlayStation controller button icons on the bottom.

2) The Slim isn't the Pro

Sony PS4 Slim and PS4 Pro

Just so it's absolutely clear, the PlayStation 4 Pro announced today is closer to a brand new console, packing in a heap more processing power to provide dazzling enhancements over the traditional PS4 hardware. That's not what this revision is all about.

Truly, the Slim maintains all of the core elements of the original PlayStation 4 and tucks them into a smaller, cheaper box. Hopefully that's clear, especially if you saw the relative lack of fanfare for the Slim in the event stream, but we thought we should make it very obvious.

3) There are concessions

Sony PlayStation 4 Slim

Less isn't necessarily more with the PS4 Slim. Not only do you lose a bit of plastic in the process, but you also lose the optical audio port as well. If you're rocking a surround sound setup, then that might be a deal-breaker – but that really depends on your existing audio hardware.

The Slim also only ships with a 500GB hard drive, so if you're eyeing something larger out of the box, you won't find it here – at least not for now. While 500GB sounds like a lot, those of us who already have a PS4 or Xbox One know that it fills up shockingly fast. Download or install a dozen games on your box and you'll probably be out of room.

4) The DualShock 4 is different

It's not immediately clear why Sony made the change, but the slim PlayStation 4 comes with a revised version of the brilliant DualShock 4 controller, as well.

At a glance, it seems to have the same shape and overall design, but there's one notable difference: rather than having a big, bright light pumping out the back of the gamepad, there's a smaller, translucent slit on the touchpad on the front.

You'll still get a little bit of coloured light pouring out of the controller, which is used to track the controllers with the PS4 Camera primarily for PlayStation VR usage, but maybe now there will be less of a battery hit. That's the best reason we can think of, at least.

5) It's out next week

Sony PlayStation 4 Slim

Don't have a PlayStation 4 yet? Well, if you don't want to wait until November for the Pro model, you can pick up the slim new PS4 next week on 15 September for £259 (or US$299).

It will be the new "standard" PS4 going forward, and leaves less of a footprint alongside your TV while still delivering an awesome console gaming experience. If you see a 4K TV in your future, then you're probably better off saving a little extra cash and springing for the Pro – but if not, the slim PS4 should do the trick.

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