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When will Sony ship a slim redesigned PS3? |

Sony officially said, “We currently don’t have any plans for a redesigned PS3.” This isn’t completely accurate. I’m sure that the teams involved with manufacturing the hardware definitely have continuous plans for improving the hardware, lowering production costs, and using newer and improved components from their suppliers. And I’m sure a major end-user visible smaller, lighter redesign is well planned. What Sony’s PR statement translates to is that they don’t have any plans that they are ready to discuss publically or any near-finished product that is going to ship in the immediate future.

First, a brief overview of hardware improvements (source):

Original Launch Hardware (November 2006) Newer PS3 Hardware (as of August 2008)
Cell CPU 90nm tech 65nm tech (smaller, cheaper, cooler, lower power draw)
RSX GPU 90nm tech 65nm tech (same improvements as above)
Max Power Draw 200 Watt 130 Watt
Cooling 5 internal heat pipes Cheaper, lighter heat aluminum heat sinks

In addition to the above, in 2008 Toshiba and Sony announced that they had Cell CPUs being manufactured with an even cheaper, cooler, and lower power 45nm and that would be in full mass production sometime in 2009. They didn’t mention a specific date, but new PS3 assembly will obviously switch to that once it’s available.

Secondly, have you seen a disassembled PS3? The blu-ray drives are big and heavy. Various vendors have been selling much lighter, thinner 9.5mm blu-ray drives for over a year now. I’m sure that technology is readily and cheaply available for PS3 use when they do decide to do a redesign.

Thirdly, they’ve dropped PS2 compatability hardware which I strongly dislike as an end user, but I’m sure that simplifies the hardware.

Bottom Line

There have major improvements to every part of the PS3 hardware since it first launched in 2006, yet they are still using the exact some external shell with the same size and form factor. The technology is available to do a major slimline redesign, the question is when will they do that?

I really can’t guess better than anyone else, but I think it’s a safe bet that we will see further internal improvements to new PS3 units later this year. At the least, we will likely see 45nm process technology in production this year.

  • Sinlock

    Keep in mind the PS2 got it’s scaled down size when it was nearly 5 years old and thats mainly due to the removal of the modem, harddrive bay, IEEE 1394, and internal power supply. All that plus the natural reduction in size of other hardware components.

    45nm and the slimer BD drive will be a big step forward but cooling will also be a major factor.

  • Darrin

    Sure, they waited five years before the major PS2 redesign, but with the PSP they’ve been doing more smaller frequent improvements.

    Sony recognizes that consumers respond well to smaller and more frequent hardware improvements, so hopefully we will see that with the PS3.

  • I’ll be slapping my 20 gig on Ebay to fund a slim PS3. 🙂

  • ehandlr

    Sources are coming out of the woodworks to say this is in fact real.

  • Even if they come out with a slim PS3. I’m still keeping my “fatty” 60GB Version PS3.

  • Darrin

    Sources? Please tell?

    Real as in this will happen eventually? That’s obvious. Real as in concrete evidence in the next year? That I’d like to see.

  • matt

    Pics are all of the internets now and they look very convincing. Makes a lot of sense because they have to find ways to get the cost down. Many people would love to have a PS3 but they are still $400.

    A size reduction may also prompt current owners to pick up the new model. Personally size means nothing to me but to others it means everything.

    If they can get the price down people looking for a Blu-Ray player might go with the very good PS3 for a player. Right now there are options that are cheaper but close the gap and the PS3 offers much more.

  • Ya, here are the “leaked” pics. One thing that I noticed is …. where are the vents?

  • ehandlr

    Couple things to add…

    -The port access in the rear panel matches up perfectly to the current motherboard design. This doesn’t prove anything…but its of interest.

    -The leaks come from Maintek Computer located in Suzhou, China who does manufacture PS3’s. The company issued a cease and desist order on the the chinese website that first posted the images.

    -PSP-3000 leaked from the same manufacturer 3 weeks before it was announced. It is almost exactly 3 weeks until E3 as it is now.

    -Last a NeoGaf inside source known as “Sin”, who has given exact information on previous Sony annoucnments previously has stated this is true and they are looking at a September release

  • ehandlr

    “previous sony announcments previously” is redundant isn’t it….doh! lol

  • ehandlr

    ..hey..where did my 2 posts go?

  • I see your posts. Interesting, points. Wonder if it’s possible to have it stand vertical though.

  • Richard Davison

    if there were a new slim ps3 i wouldnt get rid of my launch 60gb ps3 cz it is the best system.