PlayStation 5 Clarifies Ray-Tracing Support

Sony Interactive Entertainment is making waves this week for announcing that the upcoming PlayStation 5 is officially called, well, the PlayStation 5, and that it releases Holiday 2020, among other things. But in addition to all of the new announcements about stuff like haptic feedback controller technology, the company has also clarified a previously revealed aspect of the new console: its ray-tracing support.

While it was revealed back in April that the PlayStation 5 would support ray-tracing technology, exactly how it would go about doing that seems to have remained in question a little bit given that the folks making it have basically refused to talk about it outside of very specific circumstances. The benefits of ray-tracing technology often boil down to impressive lighting, but it does extend beyond that.

"If you wanted to run tests to see if the player can hear certain audio sources or if the enemies can hear the players’ footsteps, ray tracing is useful for that," system architect Mark Cerny had told Wired back in April. "It's all the same thing as taking a ray through the environment."

At the time, it was reported that the PlayStation 5 would featured a custom version of Radeon's Navi GPUs, and that it would "support" ray tracing. This seems to have caused some confusion as to whether it was software or hardware support, but it turns out that it's the latter rather than the former.

"There is ray-tracing acceleration in the GPU hardware," Cerny told Wired more recently, "which I believe is the statement that people were looking for."


What do you think about all the PlayStation 5 news this week? Does ray-tracing support and acceleration interest you in the new console? Let us know in the comments, or hit me up directly on Twitter at @rollinbishop to talk all things gaming!

The PlayStation 5 is set to release Holiday 2020. You can check out all of our previous coverage of the upcoming console right here.