Ever since the PS Vita was rumored to exist, the guts of the new portable have been the talk of the town. Releasing the beast that is the PlayStation 3, filled with expensive and powerful hardware, has earned Sony a reputation for power with no regard for price. After the 3DS price drop caused pressure to drop the price of the Vita many have wondered if the hardware would have to take a hit. Sony has finally come clean and is letting the world know what it plans to put inside its new baby.
512MB RAM, a quad-core ARM Cortex-A9 and an SGX543MP4+ GPU power the portable's insides. A 5", OLED, 16:9 capacitive multi-touch screen with 960 x 544 resolution blows the 3DS' 3.5" 400 x 240 resolution screen out of the water. Half of the pixels on the 3DS are used per eye for 3D so isn't a completely fair comparison but it makes the point. The PS Vita's screen will be large, high-resolution and beautiful. The front QVGA and back VGA cameras won't replace your point and shoot with a resolution of 640x480 but you didn't plan on using it for photography class, did you?
There have been rumors floating around that the RAM was cut in half in cheaper models of the Vita in order to compete on price with the 3DS but Sony loaded it up with the full 512MB. Sony told Eurogamer that 512MB of RAM was required for programs running in the background including the very important cross-game voice chat, Party Chat. Sony still doesn't offer a cross-game chat on the PS3 while Xbox Live members have always had a party chat system. Does the PS3 need more RAM or what? Here's hoping that Party Chat becomes a PlayStation Network wide service including PS3s when the Vita is released.
Sony held true to their reputation for power by including the quad-core ARM Cortex-A9 core CPU and SGX543MP4+ GPU. Those two processors will output some pretty awesome gaming power using the same ARM chip technology as Apple iPad 2 but twice the processing power. This puts Sony one step ahead of everyone else in handheld graphical power, but with Apple due to release a new iPad with a rumored double the resolution the competition isn't far behind.
Additionally, Sony has confirmed that social apps including Facebook, foursquare, Skype and Twitter will be available for download from the PlayStation Store for free. Users will be able to share pictures and video on the services and in turn enjoy their friends' posts on the PS Vita. This seems like a no brainer especially with the introduction of a 3G model. People have come to expect handheld devices to allow them to easily access their social networks. If only it ran Android apps like the PlayStation Phone.
Check out all the tech specs from the press release below:
- PCH-1000 series
- ARM® Cortexâ„¢-A9 core (4 core)
- Approx. 182.0 x 18.6 x 83.5mm (width x height x depth) (tentative, excludes largest projection)
- Touch Screen
- 5 inches (16:9), 960 x 544, Approx. 16 million colors, OLED
- Multi touch screen (capacitive type)
Rear touch pad:
- Multi touch pad (capacitive type)
- Front camera, Rear camera
- Frame rate : 120fps@320x240(QVGA), 60fps@640x480(VGA)
- Resolution : Up to 640x480(VGA)
- Built-in stereo speakers
- Built-in microphone
- Six-axis motion sensing system (three-axis gyroscope, three-axis accelerometer)
- Three-axis electronic compass
- Built-in GPS (3G/Wi-Fi model only)
- Wi-Fi location service support
Keys / Switches:
- PS button
- Power button
- Directional buttons (Up/Down/Right/Left)
- Action buttons (Triangle, Circle, Cross, Square)
- Shoulder buttons (Right/Left)
- Right stick, Left stick
- START button, SELECT button
- Volume buttons (+/-)
- Mobile network connectivity (3G/Wi-Fi model only)
- IEEE 802.11b/g/n (n = 1x1)(Wi-Fi) (Infrastructure mode/Ad-hoc mode)
- Bluetooth® 2.1+EDR (A2DP/AVRCP/HSP)
- PlayStation®Vita card slot
- Memory card slot
- SIM card slot (3G/Wi-Fi model only)
- Multi-use port (for USB data communication, DC IN, Audio (Stereo Out / Mono In), Serial data communication)
- Headset jack (Stereo mini jack) (for Audio (Stereo Out / Mono In))
- Accessory port
- Built-In Lithium-ion Battery
- AC adaptor
Supported AV content format:
- Music - MP3 MPEG-1/2 Audio Layer 3, MP4 (MPEG-4 AAC), WAVE (Linear PCM)
- Videos - MPEG-4 Simple Profile (AAC), H.264/MPEG-4 AVC High/Main/Baseline Profile (AAC)
- Photos - JPEG (Exif 2.2.1), TIFF, BMP, GIF, PNG
So what do you think of the what the PS Vita is made of and is all that RAM worth your hard earned money?
The PS Vita will be available this holiday season in Japan and 2012 in the U.S. and Europe. The suggested retail price is set at $249 for the WiFi only model and $300 for the 3G model.