Die shots of Sony's PS5 chip reveal that something's missing

Take a look at these stunning PS5 die shots, courtesy of photographer Fritzchens Fritz, the legend who shoots infrared close ups of computer chips. Sure they're gorgeous, but look closer and you might notice something's amiss. 

These images show highlight the essential building blocks of the as-yet-unreleased AMD Radeon RX 6700, along with the company's Zen 2 CPU architecture, nestled deep within the Sony PS5. But Fritz, among others, noticed parts of the Zen 2 architecture have been omitted, along with apparent discrepancies in terms of GPU features. 

Locuza, known for bringing further detailed analysis to shots like these, notes that we're looking at a "modified Zen 2 CPU."

Across the whole system, there are a few differences to note. Though we're still looking at advanced Zen 2 branch prediction and larger branch target buffers, among other things, it seems there are some parts Sony and AMD have left out. These include cut down FP pipes—from 256-bit down to 128-bit—as well as a lack of Infinity Cache (similarly to the Xbox), and potentially the presence of an older render backend design. 

Further to this, it would seem the system's graphics processing chip's WPGs have been arranged as per the first-generation RDNA architecture. As Locuza notes, these shots show two WFG sub arrays, whereas AMD's "Navi 21/22/23, Van Gogh and Rembrandt only have one sub-array for all WGPs." 

Cut the cord...

(Image credit: Steelseries)

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We've already seen that the PS5 version of the RDNA architecture sits somewhere between the Navi 22 and Navi 23, with 36 Compute Units packed in—just under half that of the 80 CU Navi 21. Basically, this is just confirmation of Sony and AMD having come together to make something unique, as opposed to just dropping standard desktop hardware into the PS5. We're getting something like an RDNA 1.5 then, it seems.

All in all it's nothing we hadn't expected, as Sony's Mark Cerny has explained in the past. 

Still, let us once again marvel at the wonders of macro-imagery with some more shots of the PS5's internals, courtesy of Fritzchens Fritz:

Simply gorgeous...

Katie Wickens
Hardware Writer

Screw sports, Katie would rather watch Intel, AMD and Nvidia go at it. Having been obsessed with computers and graphics for three long decades, she took Game Art and Design up to Masters level at uni, and has been demystifying tech and science—rather sarcastically—for three years since. She can be found admiring AI advancements, scrambling for scintillating Raspberry Pi projects, preaching cybersecurity awareness, sighing over semiconductors, and gawping at the latest GPU upgrades. She's been heading the PCG Steam Deck content hike, while waiting patiently for her chance to upload her consciousness into the cloud.