Prime Day deals Roku sale Father's Day Google Doodle Super Mario Game & Watch Father's Day How to use IRS tools for child tax credit

PlayStation 5 heat when gaming: Using a thermal camera to see how hot the PS5 gets

Both the PS5 and the Xbox Series X kick out some serious heat. Here's what that means for the long-term health of your big-ticket console purchase.

Listen
- 01:41

Sony's PlayStation 5 is packed with powerful components to make your next-gen games look better than ever. That kind of power tends to generate a lot of heat, however, so I wanted to see just how hot the console gets in use. 

I pointed the CAT S62 Pro phone at it, which has a built-in thermal imaging sensor made by industry expert Flir Systems. I previously used the same phone to test the heat-generating capabilities of the new Xbox Series X, which peaked at around 121.9 degrees Fahrenheit (49.9 degrees Celsius) while playing Gears 5

img-7982
Andrew Hoyle/CNET

When the console was idling on the home screen I clocked a temperature of 66.7 F (19.3 C), roughly in line with the Xbox's 68.7 F (20.4 C). I started by firing up Astro's Playroom, the game Sony preinstalled to show off some of the new console and controller features. It hit a temperature of 83.4 F (28.6 C).

Next, I launched the Final Fantasy VII remake and played for about 40 minutes. The temperature actually dropped in this time to around 78 F (25.6 C). That's likely because FFVII isn't as demanding on the console, as it was built for previous-generation machines. Playing Bugsnax brought that temperature up to 88.1 F (31.2 C), but it was Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales that saw the temperature peak at 95.1 F (35.1 C). 

flir-20201109t134455

The Xbox Series X clocked a temperature of 49.5 degrees Celsius at its peak.

Andrew Hoyle/CNET

That's a reasonable heat, but it's quite a bit below the 121.9 F I observed on the Series X. I was playing more demanding games on the Series X, however, and there simply aren't that many power-hungry titles yet on the PS5.

How both consoles will fare when big-name games such as Cyberpunk 2077 and Resident Evil 8 arrive remains to be seen. 

PS5 vs. Xbox Series X heat test


PS5 Xbox Series X
Peak temp 95.2 F (35.1 C) 121.1 F (49.5 C)