As we move into the next generation of gaming, a lot of people seem to be making a big deal about how quiet these new consoles are. Specifically, a number of PlayStation 5 reviews mentioned the lack of noise coming from the console as it was running games, which seems like a night and day difference following the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 4 Pro. For that, we have a massive fan inside the PlayStation 5 to thank, but as it turns out, not everyone is getting the same fan inside their console.
That was discovered French website Les Numeriques, which tore down a handful of PlayStation 5 units to take a look at the fans inside them after one staff member reported that their personal console wasn’t as quiet as the review unit they used before launch. That staff member at Les Numeriques isn’t alone in reporting louder than expected noise coming from the PlayStation 5, either.
Les Numeriques’ mini-investigation discovered that there are at least two types of cooling fans Sony ships in the PlayStation 5, and while the fans have the same overall footprint, the shape and density of the fan blades are clearly different. This leads to some consoles being quieter than others, with Les Numeriques recording an in-game noise level of 39 dB in one console and 43 dB in another.
That isn’t a massive difference – and both are quieter than any PlayStation 4 unit – but it’s big enough for users to take notice. Sony might be using more than just two different types of fans as well, because the fan we saw in its official teardown of the PlayStation 5 is different from the two fans Les Numeriques discovered in its own consoles.
So, if your console is louder than you expected it to be, it might not just be your imagination. Les Numeriques’ report also found that you can swap in one fan design for another rather easily, so if there’s a future where replacement fans are available for purchase, you could always jump to the quieter model. For now though, it seems that many PlayStation 5 buyers may end up with a fan that isn’t quite as good as they were hoping.