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PS5 Slim vs PS5 – what are the differences?

The two PlayStation 5 models are finally put head to head.
Last Updated on March 15, 2024
PS5 Slim vs PS5 - what are the differences? Image shows the PS5 and the PS5 Slim with a red VS sign inbetween, on a green gradient background.
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If you’re in the market for a new PlayStation console, you’ll no doubt encounter the PS5 Slim vs PS5 dilemma. Sony has upheld its decades-long tradition of the PlayStation getting a smaller model, with the PlayStation 5 Slim losing 30% of its original bulk. The newer and slimmer model will eventually replace the original PS5 completely, so we’re cracking down on a side-by-side comparison to see which one you should go for.

Following the November 2023 launch of the PS5 Slim, gamers now have the opportunity to upgrade their PlayStation experience with a more compact console that still brings the CPU and GPU hardware power of the original device. This article will explore the key differences between the PS5 Slim and the launch version of the PlayStation 5, covering aspects such as their designs, performance, storage, disc drive or digital, and price.

PS5 Slim vs PS5 price

When it comes to pricing, Sony has made some interesting decisions with the PS5 Slim. The disc version of the PS5 Slim is priced at $499.99/£479.99, the same as the standard edition of the PS5. However, the digital-only version of the PS5 Slim comes with a price tag of $449.99/£389, which is $50 more than the original PS5 digital.

This pricing strategy may seem puzzling at first glance, but it’s important to consider the additional cost of purchasing the detachable Blu-Ray disc drive for the digital-only PS5 Slim. When factoring in the cost of the disc drive, the digital-only PS5 Slim ends up being more expensive than simply opting for the disc version. Therefore, if players are inclined to play physical game discs, it might be more cost-effective to go for the disc version of the PS5 Slim.

  • PS5 Slim (no disc drive) – $449
  • PS5 Slim (with disc drive) – $499
  • Original PS5 (no disc drive) – $399
  • Original PS5 (disc drive) – $499

Sony PlayStation 5 Slim vs Sony PlayStation 5 specs

PlayStation 5 Digital Edition (slim)

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SpecsPS5 Slim (Disc and Digital)PS5 (Disc and Digital)
DimensionsPS5 Slim (Disc): 95mm x 358mm x 216mm
PS5 Slim (Digital): 80mm x 358mm x 216mm
PS5 (Disc): 104mm x 390mm x 260m
PS5 (Digital): 104mm x 390mm x 260mm
Internal StoragePS5 Slim (Disc): 1TB
PS5 Slim (Digital): 1TB
PS5 (Disc): 825GB
PS5 (Digital): 825GB
PricePS5 Slim (Disc): $499.99 / £479.99
9PS5 Slim (Digital): $449.99 / £389.99
PS5 (Disc): $499.99 / £479.99
PS5 (Digital): $399.99 / £389.99
PS5 Slim vs PS5 specs table

Differences between the PS5 Slim vs PS5

Let’s explore the differences in the features of the two PlayStation 5 models.

PS5 Slim vs PS5: aesthetics and design

In terms of aesthetics and design, the PS5 Slim introduces a sleeker, yet not a particularly more visually appealing form factor compared to the original PS5. The new design and size reduction give the PS5 Slim a more compact and streamlined look, with the digital-only model, without the disc drive, coming down to dimensions of 80mm x 358mm x 216mm. It’s worth noting though, that this ‘Slim’ size should still be taken with a pinch of salt: both models are still bigger than the Xbox Series X.

Both versions of the PS5 Slim feature a similar two-tone design, with a black center surrounded by white panels. Unlike its original console, the upper panels of the PS5 Slim have received a glossy finish, with the bottom ones keeping the classic matte finish. This design choice gives the console its notable futuristic appearance, while still retaining the iconic Sony PlayStation branding.

As promised, it looks like the PS5 Slim is also getting a trio of colorful faceplate accessories. At CES 2024, the PS5 Slim was shown in matte silver, blue, and red, and now we’ve got a confirmed lineup of Stirling, Volcanic Red, Cobalt Blue, and Midnight Black available for purchase from the PlayStation website for $59.99 / £49.99.

However, another difference pops up concerning the orientation of the console. While the original PS5’s stand could be used to support the device both horizontally and vertically, the PS5 Slim only comes with a stand that supports the console at a horizontal position. A new vertical stand is available, but at the cost of an extra $29.

PS5 Slim vs PS5 performance

When it comes to performance, both the PS5 Slim and the original PS5 boast pretty much identical capabilities under the hood. Unlike the PS4 and PS4 Pro, where there were significant performance differences, games will run exactly the same on both versions of the PS5. This means that players can expect the same immersive gaming experience regardless of whether they choose to go for the PS5 Slim or the original PS5.

PS5 Slim vs PS5 storage

One of the few notable improvements in the PS5 Slim models is the increase in its storage capacity. The original PS5 only offered 825GB of onboard storage, leaving players with limited space for game installations. However, with the new PS5 Slim, Sony has listened to the feedback and equipped both versions of the console with a full terabyte (1TB) of built-in storage. This additional storage allows players to install more games and eliminates the need for immediate external SSD expansion.

✓ Marla’s thoughts

Should I get additional storage for my PS5?

Well, given that the PS5 Slim boasts a hefty 1TB of storage, you might not need to get extra storage for your console, expecially if you’re a disc drive user. However, given that AAA titles can often exceed 100GB, and even 200GB in some cases, gamers that have gone for the all-digital PS5 might want to consider an internal storage expansion.

PS5 Slim vs PS5: disc drive or digital?

Just like the original PS5, the PS5 Slim is available in two versions: one with a built-in disc drive and one that’s digital-only. This gives players the flexibility to choose the option that best suits their gaming preferences and collection of physical discs. However, it’s worth noting that the digital-only version of the PS5 Slim comes with an added bonus.

The PS5 Slim with a disc drive allows players to enjoy physical media, just like the standard edition. However, for those who opt for the digital-only version, Sony offers an optional detachable disc drive that can be purchased separately. This detachable disc drive, priced at $79.99, allows players to play physical game discs on their digital-only PS5 Slim, giving them the best of both worlds.

Is the PS5 Slim better than the PS5?

The PS5 Slim is a welcome addition to the PlayStation family, offering players a more compact edition of Sony’s flagship console. While the PS5 Slim might be the smaller of the two consoles, internally there isn’t too much difference between the Slim and original. The Slim gets a 175GB storage boost, but if you’ve already invested in an internal SSD expansion, it’s really nothing to write home about. So, it ultimately comes down to personal preference, gaming habits, and the amount of space you have, as internally, the two PS5s are an equal match.

Marla writes across a wide range of topics across PC Guide, including AI, PC hardware, and news on the latest tech releases. She's a passionate writer that's interested in the future of technology.