The PS5 has Launch Hardware Issues Too

Posted on November 23, 2020 by Brad Sams in Games, PlayStation with 13 Comments

Both the Xbox Series S/X and PlayStation 5 are nearing the first two weeks of availability. While the vast majority of consoles from both manufacturers have been trouble-free, Microsoft has had a few problems and it now looks like Sony is having a couple as well.

On the Microsoft side, aside from fake vape smoke, the biggest issue is the ‘clicking’ DVD drive. This occurs when you place a disc into the drive and it sounds like it is rattling inside the drive as it spins.

On the Sony side, the issues appear to be a bit more extensive with the first item that popped up being the PS5 queue bug that was stopping games from being downloaded. There is now a fix available for this bug thankfully but it did make for a few frustrating days for early adopters that were forced to hard-reset their consoles.

There have also been isolated reports of the disc-drive clicking in a similar fashion to the Xbox console but the bigger issues looks to be tied to the GPU.

A sizeable number of users on Twitter and Reddit are reporting GPU-artifacts plaguing their consoles. While this does not appear to be a widespread issue (yet) it does look like there are more than just a handful of consoles being impacted.

The exact cause of the issue is not fully known, other than it appears that the GPU is defective but is it from a bad yield of the chip, overheating, or damaged during shipment? That we do not know yet. For those that are seeing this issue, the good news is that most of those who reported the problems were able to get a new console from Sony relatively quickly.

Every time there is a new hardware launch, there will always be an isolated number of devices that are defective. While the early teething issues are starting to show up, the bigger question is if the GPU issue for Sony is only a few units or indication or a larger problem.

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Comments (13)

13 responses to “The PS5 has Launch Hardware Issues Too”

  1. will

    I have seen this "flash" effect in COD MW a couple of times on the XSX. Not as bad as that, but I thought it was just a bad texture or something.

    I would guess new drivers/software will solve a lot of these issues.

  2. Wondering_Bard

    Gamers Nexus did an extensive amount of testing on the PS5 performance and found some issues with their cooling design. The memory was running at 93 degrees Celsius on an open bench setup with a 20 degree C (68 degree F) ambient temp. That's really close to the themal limit of these chips in a somewhat cooler environment. The VRM MOSFETS and SOC were running at over 70 C.

    Plus, the white plastic "collar" seems to insulate about 5-10 degrees of heat on its own.

    Stick this thing in a poorly ventilated cabinet or run it on a hot day with no ac and it's entirely possible that users could start seeing problems.

    The good news is that there's a huge 20 watt fan in there that Sony is underutilizing to keep noise levels down. They could pass over a firmware update to kick that fan up if they start seeing red-ring-like issues. Yeah, they'd increase noise, but they could absolutely fix their hot memory by brute forcing the air flow.

    • waethorn

      In reply to Wondering_Bard:

      "Stick this thing in a poorly ventilated cabinet or run it on a hot day with no ac and it's entirely possible that users could start seeing problems."

      That's called an PEBCAC problem.

    • sammyg

      In reply to Wondering_Bard:

      I watched that video. if I had a PS5 that white plastic would be coming off. He said it cools all of it down by 5-10 degrees which is huge. Imagine taking the lid of your PC case and you CPU/RAM dropped by 5-10 degrees.

      I mean the thing is already ugly, what would you have to lose?

  3. glenn8878

    Widespread reports of consoles being stolen by FEDEX drivers for both PS5 and XBOX. This is possible since the shipping boxes has descriptions of what’s in it. Not exactly smart and FEDEX isn’t doing anything to stop it.

  4. thretosix

    I've noticed a white flash effect playing AC Valhalla (just the doorframe of a doorway) and Forza Horizon 4 (part of a bridge) on the Xbox Series X. They were completely random and I couldn't reproduce it after it happened. I've only seen it happen once on each game. Considering I've put about 20 hours on the system and how rare it was I'm really not worried about it. I'm sure there are bugs getting worked out overall.

  5. sammyg

    You need to google/bing

    "Xbox Series X turns itself off"

    There is a 114 page thread over at answers dot Microsoft dot com. Lots of people having issues with the XSX shutting down in a bunch of games. Some have even returned their XSX and gotten new ones that do not have the issue.

    This was also covered in a Fortune article that popped for me in my feed tool.

    • Paul Thurrott

      Well, that's how you know this issue isn't a big deal, since it's not possible that anyone returned an Xbox Series X and got a second one.
      • sammyg

        In reply to paul-thurrott:

        Also if you look at the Xbox Insiders release notes for the last two updates they talk about fixing the Xbox Series X shut down issue.

        • troybenedict

          In reply to sammyg:

          Yes, it is true that three insider builds have comments in the patch notes that claim to address the shutdown issue. The last one was released to insiders on the 18th. But it didn't fix the issue for me and others. I ended up sending mine in for repair on the 20th.

        • Paul Thurrott

          There you go. The "small number of users" (as I'm sure Microsoft will describe it) who were impacted by this bug will be very happy.
      • sammyg

        In reply to paul-thurrott:

        You do not think Microsoft keeps some spares for this kind of stuff? PC gamer magazine has an article about this now, same with Forbes. Just search YouTube for Xbox Series X turns off and you will get at least half a dozen videos showing you what happens to them.

        There are actual photos in that thread to show people what to send in and what they got back. Screen shots of their tech support chat. Some people did advanced replacement and showed the paper work they got from Microsoft about how they had 14 days to send in the dead console after receiving their new one or they would be charged for the new one. They hold your credit card. This is from an official Microsoft support site, not some reddit forum.

        If you look at the thread they are saying you get emailed a shipping label (in the US) and its sent back to Texas in two days/Fedex. It the later part of the thread some sent them back on the 12/13th after getting them on the 9th (pre-order) and have got new one's in the last few days.

        Luckily for me mine is working great. My sons is still in the box, in the basement, waiting for Xmas. Hopefully his does not have this issue. I do think a Software update will fix most of these issues and after reading through that thread I think most of the issues are tied to TV, 4K, HDR, VRR HDMI-CEC settings and the TV's are shutting down the consoles using incorrect HDMI-CEC settings. Some of the users in the thread were able to fix the problem by getting an update for their TV (LG users) and hard resetting the console so it's autodetect got the new settings from the TV.

        Mine is hooked up to a 27inch IPS gaming monitor so it's not using most of that. COD MW at 1440p, 120hz/120fps, VRR is freaking amazing on the XSX.

  6. nbplopes

    There is no public data to conclude the impact of the issues in terms of numbers of users ... well if one does not have one with issues.

    It can be just that some units are with problems, like any other device launch, or that it’s more widespread informing either problems in production or design.

    The fact is that only Sony and MS have that data to drive conclusions for now. Considering their history I would not count on either of them to come out and say any different that “a minor number of users”.

    So will need to wait about 6 months to see if public reports increase or decrease in volume.