Sony's latest PS3 may be slimmer, smaller and quieter than its predecessor, but its real surprise may be lurking inside. The company has apparently updated their Cell processor built on 45nm processes rather than the previous 65nm chip; that not only makes for cheaper production, helping Sony bring down the PS3 Slim's price to $299.99, but it also brings with it increased performance.
The new Cell processor is also more frugal when it comes to power requirements, helping the PS3 Slim keep its draw down to 250W from the 280W of the first-gen design. A collaborative effort between Sony, Toshiba and IBM, the three companies have declined to confirm what clock speed the new Cell chip runs at.
In fact Sony made no suggestion of performance increases during their press launch of the new slimmed-down PlayStation 3. That could mean they're holding back the power of the chip until a later date, when games will be able to take advantage of it (such as in a mid-model refresh), or it could indicate that they've throttled the processor back purposefully to reduce power demands and the like. The PS3 is believed to use the same NVIDIA RSX GPU as the previous model.