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PlayStation 4 Scores High On Repairability Scale

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 24 comments

Check out what's inside the PS4.

Sony's PS4 launched today, and the iFixit team has wasted no time in getting down to the nitty gritty. The site, as usual, was among the first in line for the PS4 just so it could tear it apart and assess how easy it is to repair. The answer? Pretty easy. iFixit reports that the new PlayStation console is easy-to-open and repair friendly, scoring an 8 out of 10 on its repairability scale. Not bad!

Notable finds include a user-replaceable hard drive, Security Torx screws, and tattle-tale anti-tamper stickers. It's worth noting that the user replaceable drive is stowed behind an easily removable cover, and you don't have to remove the case to replace the HDD. In other words, you don't need to worry about those 'warranty void if seal removed/damaged' stickers. They don't come into play until later in the game.

The chips inside include the eight-core 64-bit AMD Jaguar CPU and Radeon GPU we heard about previously. This is working alongside 16 x 512 MB of Samsung GDDR5 RAM (total is 8 GB), Samsung's K4B2G1646E-BCK0 2 Gb DDR3 SDRAM, and a secondary processor for network tasks.

Check the full list of chips below:

     • SCEI CXD90026G SoC (includes AMD "Jaguar" CPU Cores and Radeon GPU)
     • Samsung K4G41325FC-HC03 512 MB GDDR5 RAM (total of 16 x 512 MB = 8 GB)
     • SCEI CXD90025G Secondary/Low Power Processor for Network Tasks
     • Samsung K4B2G1646E-BCK0 2 Gb DDR3 SDRAM
     • Macronix MX25L25635FMI 256 Mb Serial Flash Memory
     • Marvell Wireless Avastar 88W8797 7 Integrated 2x2 WLAN/Bluetooth/FM Single-Chip SoC
     • Panasonic MN86471A HDMI Communication LSI
     • Marvell 88EC060-NN82 Ethernet Controller
     • SCEI 1327KM44S
     • Genesys Logic GL3520 USB 3.0 Hub Controller
     • Samsung K4G41325FC-HC03 4 Gb (512 MB) GDDR5 RAM
     • International Rectifier 35858 N326P IC2X
     • Macronix 25L1006E CMOS Serial Flash Memory
     • Renesas SCEI RJ832841FP1
     • Microchip Technology 312 3536A

The Playstation 4 Teardown Review

For all the gory photos and the step-by-step guide, hit up iFixit.

Follow Jane McEntegart @JaneMcEntegart. Follow us @tomshardware, on Facebook and on Google+.

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  • 10 Hide
    Christopher Shaffer , November 15, 2013 11:07 AM
    I don't know why it comes as such as surprise every time I point out to people that the PS3 also had a user-replaceable drive that didn't require a proprietary replacement like the 360. I've actually had to show people how-to videos to prove this.

    Nice to see Sony has taken a similar approach on this system. Can't wait to see all of the things welded, riveted and soldered together in the Xbone.
Other Comments
  • 10 Hide
    Christopher Shaffer , November 15, 2013 11:07 AM
    I don't know why it comes as such as surprise every time I point out to people that the PS3 also had a user-replaceable drive that didn't require a proprietary replacement like the 360. I've actually had to show people how-to videos to prove this.

    Nice to see Sony has taken a similar approach on this system. Can't wait to see all of the things welded, riveted and soldered together in the Xbone.
  • 0 Hide
    ddpruitt , November 15, 2013 11:37 AM
    This.

    I don't know how many "destroyed" playstations (1,2, and 3) I've been able to easily take apart and repair.
  • 5 Hide
    InvalidError , November 15, 2013 11:42 AM
    Quote:
    Can't wait to see all of the things welded, riveted and soldered together in the Xbone.

    Well, while the PS4 can be pulled apart relatively easily, nearly everything important is integrated on a single PCB so there isn't much to repair anyhow unless you are "lucky enough" to blow the PSU, optical drive or fan.
  • 0 Hide
    DRosencraft , November 15, 2013 11:58 AM
    Taking them (PS3) apart was relatively simple. They even used Phillips head screws for the most part instead of just star head screws you often see. The 360 wasn't exceptionally more difficult to take apart, but was noticeably so. Not a big deal right now with regard to the PS4 and XBOne. Should take full advantage of the warranty while it's still good.
  • 0 Hide
    anhxeom , November 15, 2013 12:05 PM
    The first version of any console are usually huge, so it's not a surprise how easy they are to take apart. Wait until the 2nd or 3rd revision when they are shrink, that's when things gets a little interesting.
  • 0 Hide
    m32 , November 15, 2013 12:08 PM
    I liked the teardown. We'll see how the XBone fairs next week.
  • 0 Hide
    Christopher Shaffer , November 15, 2013 12:17 PM
    I'm not sure what the concern over star hex screws is. Harley has used these for a long time on American-made motorcycles. You can buy a set of star bits at Walmart for about $5.

    The primary reason these are used is that power tools (and assembly machines) have a lot more torque than you would with a screw driver. Having more contact points avoids stripping out the screw head. I'd rather have block top star or Allen heads any day.
  • 0 Hide
    bmwman91 , November 15, 2013 12:34 PM
    Yeah, Torx and Torx+ screws allow much greater torque to be applied, and a higher level of control over that torque than Phillips heads. Torx drivers and bits are dirt cheap and come with almost any kit these days. Heck, I have even switched to wood / construction screws that use T20 Torx heads for framing and lumber projects around the house because they are so much easier to drive than Phillips heads. You don't have to push harder to get higher torque with them, which is pretty helpful when you are on a ladder. They also don't wear out the bits as fast as Phillips heads. Anyway, in an electronics factory environment I bet that Torx heads lead to better repeatability, less frequent replacement of bits and less chance of metal shavings since you are less likely to strip a screw head. Looks like Sony is managing fine with the Phillips screws though.
  • 0 Hide
    Eximo , November 15, 2013 1:33 PM
    That may be the most awesomely translated spam I have seen in a long while.
  • 0 Hide
    iam2thecrowe , November 15, 2013 5:48 PM
    8gb ddr5, then 2gb ddr3, then 4gb ddr5??? wtf?
  • 0 Hide
    knowom , November 15, 2013 7:24 PM
    "PlayStation 4 Scores High On Repairability Scale" Scores great on mine since I won't be buying some pile of junk console they've held back PC's for how many years as it is?
  • 0 Hide
    DrBackwater , November 15, 2013 7:28 PM
    I give credit to amd for making the consoles compact, but having a compact console doesn't mean its better.(Nor does it mean having a dog drag a heavy bone around attached with a mounted camera on top.)
    But repairing these consoles would be easier as it is repairing a android phone.
  • 0 Hide
    toddedens , November 15, 2013 8:13 PM
    @ iam2thecrow. The PS4 has 2 gpus on the apu, plus a separate dedicated chip, hence the separate gddr5 ram
  • 0 Hide
    razor512 , November 15, 2013 9:21 PM
    Can someone wire in a thermal probe at the base of the heatsink?

    Would love to know the normal running temperature to see how much headroom the cooling has (will help give an idea of if it will run into cooling issues when it begins to get dust buildup.)
  • 0 Hide
    dragonsqrrl , November 15, 2013 11:23 PM
    Quote:
    8gb ddr5, then 2gb ddr3, then 4gb ddr5??? wtf?


    It has 8GB GDDR5 total. Each of the 16 chips is 4Gb (512MB), 16 x 512MB = 8GB, which runs over a 256-bit bus. Apparently in addition to this the PS4 also has a single 2Gb (256MB) DDR3 chip, which I wasn't aware of. I'm not sure what it's used for, but whatever it is it doesn't need a whole lot of bandwidth. Perhaps it's dedicated to the OS?
  • 0 Hide
    Johan Kryger Haglert , November 16, 2013 2:01 AM
    dragonsqrrl: So why you say 8 GB in total when it's obviously 14 GB?

    If I had a guess it could had been 2 GB DDR for the network processor, 8 GB GDR for the APU and another 4 GB GDR especially for the graphics part of the APU. At first.

    But I guess it could rather be 8 GB GDR + 4 GB GDR for both the processors (APU + network chip) and 2 GB DDR used for caching maybe.

    But guesses are pretty worthless. Would be more interesting to know. And how much is different if one compare the claimed to be network chip vs the regular APU. (Someone says two GPUs, are there possibly one on each chip and that the CPU part of the second APU just isn't used as much / lower clocked?)
  • 0 Hide
    InvalidError , November 16, 2013 4:43 AM
    Quote:
    Apparently in addition to this the PS4 also has a single 2Gb (256MB) DDR3 chip, which I wasn't aware of. I'm not sure what it's used for, but whatever it is it doesn't need a whole lot of bandwidth. Perhaps it's dedicated to the OS?

    The 2Gb DDR3 chip is for the secondary CPU/"network processor" on the back side of the mainboard. I'm guessing it does things like check for updates, notifications and other stuff like that without powering up the rest of the console.
  • 0 Hide
    tomfreak , November 16, 2013 4:53 PM
    Sony is not Apple.
  • -1 Hide
    rwinches , November 16, 2013 10:05 PM
    Secure Torx

    http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.controlyourcash.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/torx-security.jpeg&imgrefurl=http://www.controlyourcash.com/2013/02/11/carnival-of-wealth-how-home-depot-gets-rich-edition/&h=385&w=400&sz=92&tbnid=c3w7Q-f6-Q5XyM:&tbnh=90&tbnw=94&zoom=1&usg=__6id8cbB89dwWHUSmGgpXPfyVWq0=&docid=zNrhVLn3RtnToM&sa=X&ei=dVyIUun5MKn-2gWQxIDoAQ&ved=0CFsQ9QEwBQ
  • 0 Hide
    Christopher Shaffer , November 17, 2013 12:19 AM
    Quote:
    Secure Torx

    http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.controlyourcash.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/torx-security.jpeg&imgrefurl=http://www.controlyourcash.com/2013/02/11/carnival-of-wealth-how-home-depot-gets-rich-edition/&h=385&w=400&sz=92&tbnid=c3w7Q-f6-Q5XyM:&tbnh=90&tbnw=94&zoom=1&usg=__6id8cbB89dwWHUSmGgpXPfyVWq0=&docid=zNrhVLn3RtnToM&sa=X&ei=dVyIUun5MKn-2gWQxIDoAQ&ved=0CFsQ9QEwBQ


    This article has some pretty offensive language that I won't repeat here. I think there's probably a more appropriate example you could give.

    You could also link to the secure torx tools, which are just as easy to get:

    http://www.harborfreight.com/catalogsearch/result/?q=security+torx

    http://www.amazon.com/Torx-Driver-Security-T-10-T-40/dp/B0002SPLQ8

    http://www.homedepot.com/p/Unbranded-6-Piece-Security-Torx-Bit-Set-CC60391/203688817


    Instead, you linked to a sight with anti-semitic remarks blaming a group of people for some conspiracy with tools.
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