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Interview with Otori for PS5 thermal design (PS5 clocks were set at 2.23 ghz more than 2 years ago)

Agnostic2020

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Its a very long interview with harware vp of mechanical and thermal for ps5 :
He goes into detail as to why he started developing the liquid metal application method research for ps5 more than 2 years ago .



"I really wanted to use liquid metal as a heat conductor. It took a lot of determination and preparation. Sony Interactive Entertainment's (SIE) PlayStation 5 (PS5) console is scheduled to launch in November 2020, and Yasuhiro Otori, who is responsible for the mechanical and thermal design of the console, has been working on the PS5 This is how he describes his thoughts on the technology that played a key role in making the He has been involved in the design of the PlayStation since the PS2, and appeared himself in the PS5 disassembly video released by SIE on October 7, 2020, to work and explain the process.


Why did we liquid metal in TIM?
 Preparations for the adoption of liquid metal TIM began more than two years ago, when the configuration and shape of the PS5 hardware was roughly decided. In addition to the design, we began to consider various aspects of the adoption of liquid metal TIM, from the manufacturing process to procurement. They decided to use liquid metal TIM because the main processor (SoC) had a high operating frequency, but the die was small and the thermal density was "very high" (Mr. Otori). The heat density of the SoC, especially during gaming, is "much higher" (he said) than the PS4. That's because the PS5's SoC "basically runs at almost full power during gaming" (he says). As a result, TDP (Thermal Design Power) values and the amount of heat generated during gaming are "about the same". On the other hand, it is rare for a PS4 SoC to operate at the very edge of TDP, and even when gaming, it generates only a few percent of its TDP.

The reason for the small size of the SoC die is that die size is directly related to cost and yield. In other words, the smaller the die size, the lower the cost and the more difficult it is for defects to enter the die, which leads to higher yields.

Liquid metal TIM is more expensive than conventional thermal conductors such as thermal grease. However, when considering the thermal design of electronic devices, the more effort is put into cooling close to the heat source, the "better the cost performance" (Mr. Otori). This is because if heat can be recovered efficiently near the heat source, there is no need to spend money on heat sinks and cooling fans. On the other hand, if thermal grease is used, an expensive heat sink with high cooling performance is required.

 In other words, even if we use liquid metal TIM, which leads to higher costs, we can reduce the total cost of cooling as a result," says Otori. The speed of the cooling fan can also be reduced, which reduces noise. In other words, the use of liquid metal TIM "makes sense in terms of cost and quietness" (Mr. Otori).


although TIM is used in mobile phone base stations and other devices, its use in consumer applications is limited to a limited number of notebook computers and "overclockers," which are enthusiasts who increase the operating frequency of processors. .

 Therefore, the company has taken measures to address these issues so that it can be used in game consoles that are mass-produced in quantities ranging from several million units to more than 10 million units per year. For example, a sealed structure was adopted to prevent leakage of the liquid metal TIM. This structure is patented, although it would be obvious if it were to be disassembled and seen. Above all, there is a lot of manufacturing know-how, such as how to apply and automate liquid metal TIM, that is not obvious just by looking at it," said Otori. For example, liquid metal TIM is applied by an automated machine, but "it's a different method than conventional grease," according to Mr. Otori. We cooperated with material manufacturers to realize this liquid metal TIM. The company claims to have added customizations based on existing products.


Full article:


Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)
 
Last edited:

TheGejsza

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On paper seems like a great solution. Smaller die, better cooling, cheaper and less noise from fan. The only thing is the durability of this solution... Sony had their fuckups but I think they got one o best engienieers in the world...
 

BlueXImpulse

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I found these two quotes the most interesting

In other words, even if we use liquid metal TIM, which leads to higher costs, we can reduce the total cost of cooling as a result," says Otori. The speed of the cooling fan can also be reduced, which reduces noise. In other words, the use of liquid metal TIM "makes sense in terms of cost and quietness" (Mr. Otori).

That's because the PS5's SoC "basically runs at almost full power during gaming" (he says). As a result, TDP (Thermal Design Power) values and the amount of heat generated during gaming are "about the same". On the other hand, it is rare for a PS4 SoC to operate at the very edge of TDP, and even when gaming, it generates only a few percent of its TDP.
 

THE:MILKMAN

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Preparations for the adoption of liquid metal TIM began more than two years ago, when the configuration/clocks and shape of the PS5 hardware was decided.

No surprise when Mark Cerny has said before they lock down the hardware 2 years out. Consoles aren't made overnight! I think the Xbox One clock bumps are the outlier here and even that situation was very fortunate because of its size/cooling (due to previous RROD) versus lower power of ~100W/1.2TF that even allowed to increase the small amount they did.
 

CrysisFreak

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Apr 9, 2020
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"overheating last minute overclock"
 

Agnostic2020

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Here are his remarks about the fan from same article :

Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE) will release PlayStation 5 (PS5) in November 2020, and the company has announced that it will cut costs, improve noise and increase the size of the console's chassis In PS5, liquid metal thermal interface (TIM) is used to efficiently conduct the heat generated by the main processor (SoC) to a large heatsink, which is then cooled by a large cooling fan. In the first part of this article, the TIM of liquid metal was explained. In the second part, we will introduce some innovations for large cooling fans and heat sinks.

 The PS5's cooling fan is centrifugal, just like the PS3 and PS4, and is 120mm in diameter. It is 120mm in diameter and is controlled by a servo system like the PS4, which adjusts the fan speed according to heat generation. The centrifugal fan produces airflow in all directions. Compared to the axial fans commonly used in desktop computers, the airflow is a little smaller, but the static pressure is a little higher.

 The type of fan to be used is generally chosen based on the required static pressure and flow rate. If the static pressure required for a fan is low, then an axial fan is an option instead of a centrifugal fan. But the centrifugal fan is still in the strike zone" (Otori Yasuhiro, head of the PS5's mechanical and thermal design).

The bigger PS5 comes from a thicker fan
 To cool both sides of the main board, the PS5's cooling fan is 45 mm thick, which is thicker than the current PS4 and PS4 Pro. If we divide the SoC-mounted side of the PS5 into "Side A" and the back of the PS5 into "Side B," then the heat emitted from Side B is "equivalent to that of the PS4's SoC," according to Mr. Otori. Therefore, the air is sucked in from both sides of the cooling fan to cool the A and B sides of the main board.

The size of this cooling fan determined the size of the PS5. The fan's thickness was based on the width of the PS5 when it was placed vertically (or the height if it was placed horizontally), and it was asymmetrical when viewed from the front. This is because that is where the optical disk drive is located.

Easy to remove the optical disk drive
 When the unit is placed in portrait mode, the right side viewed from the front is on the bottom of the unit when it is placed horizontally. When the system is placed horizontally, the main board is placed underneath the heat sink and power supply module, and the optical disk drive is placed underneath the main board. The purpose of this is to make it easier to support the "Digital Edition" which does not include the drive. If you remove the optical disc drive, the standard PS5 becomes the Digital Edition.

 The PS5 measures 390mm x 260mm x 104mm, which is larger than the larger PS4 Pro (approximately 327mm x 295mm x 55mm), which is the larger of the PS4 series. In fact, there were ways to make the PS5 smaller than its current size. For example, we could reduce the size of the PS5 by installing two cooling fans, one for side A and one for side B. However, there was no way to make the PS5 smaller than the current size. However, this would increase the cost of the two cooling fans. In addition, controlling the rotation of the two cooling fans is "more difficult" than controlling only one fan. That is why they decided to use a single large fan to cool both sides of a single main board.

Small details around the cooling fan
 Around the cooling fan, measures have been taken to ensure user convenience and safety. For example, the PS5 uses a "dust catcher" that collects dust and other small debris blown away by the centrifugal force of the fan. According to Otori, "It's something we've wanted to introduce for a long time, and we adopted it because we could secure the space. Inside the PS5 is a space where dust blown away by the centrifugal force of the fan can be collected, and the dust can be vacuumed up through the hole that appears when the white exterior cover is removed.

 Safety measures were also taken to prevent fingers from accidentally getting into the spinning fan. Removing the outer cover reveals the cooling fan. While it is assumed that the power is turned off when removing the exterior cover, there is no chance of removing the cover without turning it off. In other words, if you remove the exterior cover while the power is on, the cooling fan will still be spinning. This is why we added a cover to prevent fingers from getting into the fan while it is spinning.

 However, because the fan cover creates air resistance, it has a three-dimensional shape and has small holes in it to allow the air to flow smoothly. According to Mr. Otori, "This cover was designed by a young engineer who had been with the company for a couple of years".

3D heat pipes and gaps between cooling fins
 Even with a large heat sink, the company has achieved both improved cooling performance and cost reduction. Although the heat pipes are used, the shape and airflow of the heat pipes have enabled the company to achieve cooling performance equivalent to that of an expensive vapour chamber with superior cooling performance and reduced costs. For example, the heat pipes are bent in a three-dimensional (three-dimensional) structure. Of the three fins in the heatsink, the heat pipe is made to pass through the upper and lower sides of one fin (fin 1), respectively, to increase the cooling performance of this fin.

 The other two fins have some innovations as well. For example, one of the fins (fin 2) is angled at an angle. In addition, we intentionally created a gap between this fin (fin 2) and the other fin (fin 3) to allow the air that has been heated by the first fin (fin 2) to be mixed with air from another source to cool it down and then sent to the second fin (fin 3) to improve the cooling effect on fin 3. I made it. If this gap is also filled with fins, the cooling effect of fin 3 is reduced because once the air is not cooled, it cannot be cooled.

On the B side, there is also a heat sink and heat pipe
 In addition to this large item, there is another heat sink in the area that is difficult to see from the disassembly video. That is the heat sink located on the B side of the main board. The main board is sandwiched between the aforementioned A side and B side by a metal shield plate, and in order to cool the power supply system such as the DC-DC converter mounted on the B side, a heat sink and a heat pipe were installed on the shield plate on the B side. In addition, the B-side shield is made of aluminum for cooling, while the A-side shield is made of steel.

There were other structural features as well. One example is the thermal conductivity between the GDDR6 compatible memory mounted on the B side of the main board and the shield board. Instead of the so-called 'stick-on' type thermal conductor in sheet form, it is coated with a liquid material that hardens like rubber after a short time. This is a measure to increase productivity in response to automation.

 In the case of the paste-type heat-conductive materials, it is difficult to remove them from the backing board by an automatic machine, so it is necessary to manually remove them. The PS5 uses almost all of the thermal conducive materials used in the PS5, whereas the PS4 series used only some of them.
 

Thugnificient

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May 29, 2020
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Literally beat me while I was typing my post.

Would just like to say I was right on the money (not that it wasn't obvious).

My take:
The PS5 is a damned console. How often do people open their consoles to fiddle around with the parts or change the paste? Or do you want GPU manufacturers to start using it, eliminating all the aluminum heat sinks from the picture because liquid metals destroy aluminum? Better yet, aftermarket coolers should include a tube of liquid metal instead of thermal grease, running a nice risk for their users to destroy their CPU's.
High-performance PC gaming is largely driven by DIY, not consoles, so including such a risky product as a default would be nothing short of stupid.

The engineer:
Tag teaming up with material manufacturers and know-how on how to apply Liquid metal TIM has many advantages, but it is a material that "poses a challenge to use" (Mr. Feng). For example, because it is conductive, if liquid metal TIM leaks onto the board, there is a risk of a short circuit in the board. In addition, it is highly reactive to aluminum, so it must be kept away from aluminum.

Because of these issues, while they are used in mobile phone base stations and other applications, their use in consumer applications has been limited to a very limited number of laptops and "overclockers," so-called "overclockers," which are enthusiasts who want to increase the operating frequency of their processors.

Checkmate Dodkrake Dodkrake
 
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geordiemp

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Probably explains why they used heat pipes instead of vapour chamber cooling. Interesting how the liquid metal allowed them to use a cheaper heatsink.

Also he pretty much debunked the "Sony panicked" theory when it comes to the clocks. That's very nice to hear that it wasn't a last minute decision.

Heat pipe and vapour chamber work the same way, just different shapes in effect, so Sony decided to use 6 heat pipes and spread the heat sinks more which better suited the requirement to add cooling to teh PSU and other items in the build.
 

Agnostic2020

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No surprise when Mark Cerny has said before they lock down the hardware 2 years out. Consoles aren't made overnight! I think the Xbox One clock bumps are the outlier here and even that situation was very fortunate because of its size/cooling (due to previous RROD) versus lower power of ~100W/1.2TF that even allowed to increase the small amount they did.
Yea xbox 1 bump came from them going extra cautious with cooling of x1 and size of x1 and even then it was 6% bump.
 

thelastword

Banned
Apr 7, 2006
11,734
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2,000
Yasuhiro Otori looks like a guy who was trained well by Ken Kutaragi San......Definitely knows his stuff and it's definitely showing in what the hardware can do and the gracious reviews from the youtubers and hands on people on it's quietness, cool temperatures and overall design.....Kudos to Otori....Kudos to Cerny and his entire team....Job well done...
 

Rob_27

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"On the other hand, if thermal grease is used, an expensive heat sink with high cooling performance is required".

I thought the heat sink is quite large and seems more expensive than usual? The size of the console is not a factor from the size of the heat sink? which would be be a factor of cooling performance.
 

Thugnificient

Banned
May 29, 2020
948
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405
"On the other hand, if thermal grease is used, an expensive heat sink with high cooling performance is required".

I thought the heat sink is quite large and seems more expensive than usual? The size of the console is not a factor from the size of the heat sink? which would be be a factor of cooling performance.
Now imagine if they had gone with regular thermal grease.
 
May 8, 2020
3,835
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I thought maybe the bans related to 9 TF were a bit harsh....console war season banter and all, but it's so detached from reality that I now see Mod wisdom in levying the bans. Pure 100% FUD.

Bad yields FUD (which was levied at both sides) also clarified here too.

Great interview.
 
Last edited:
Mar 27, 2020
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Uncharted bunghole
Here are his remarks about the fan from same article :

Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE) will release PlayStation 5 (PS5) in November 2020, and the company has announced that it will cut costs, improve noise and increase the size of the console's chassis In PS5, liquid metal thermal interface (TIM) is used to efficiently conduct the heat generated by the main processor (SoC) to a large heatsink, which is then cooled by a large cooling fan. In the first part of this article, the TIM of liquid metal was explained. In the second part, we will introduce some innovations for large cooling fans and heat sinks.

 The PS5's cooling fan is centrifugal, just like the PS3 and PS4, and is 120mm in diameter. It is 120mm in diameter and is controlled by a servo system like the PS4, which adjusts the fan speed according to heat generation. The centrifugal fan produces airflow in all directions. Compared to the axial fans commonly used in desktop computers, the airflow is a little smaller, but the static pressure is a little higher.

 The type of fan to be used is generally chosen based on the required static pressure and flow rate. If the static pressure required for a fan is low, then an axial fan is an option instead of a centrifugal fan. But the centrifugal fan is still in the strike zone" (Otori Yasuhiro, head of the PS5's mechanical and thermal design).

The bigger PS5 comes from a thicker fan
 To cool both sides of the main board, the PS5's cooling fan is 45 mm thick, which is thicker than the current PS4 and PS4 Pro. If we divide the SoC-mounted side of the PS5 into "Side A" and the back of the PS5 into "Side B," then the heat emitted from Side B is "equivalent to that of the PS4's SoC," according to Mr. Otori. Therefore, the air is sucked in from both sides of the cooling fan to cool the A and B sides of the main board.

The size of this cooling fan determined the size of the PS5. The fan's thickness was based on the width of the PS5 when it was placed vertically (or the height if it was placed horizontally), and it was asymmetrical when viewed from the front. This is because that is where the optical disk drive is located.

Easy to remove the optical disk drive
 When the unit is placed in portrait mode, the right side viewed from the front is on the bottom of the unit when it is placed horizontally. When the system is placed horizontally, the main board is placed underneath the heat sink and power supply module, and the optical disk drive is placed underneath the main board. The purpose of this is to make it easier to support the "Digital Edition" which does not include the drive. If you remove the optical disc drive, the standard PS5 becomes the Digital Edition.

 The PS5 measures 390mm x 260mm x 104mm, which is larger than the larger PS4 Pro (approximately 327mm x 295mm x 55mm), which is the larger of the PS4 series. In fact, there were ways to make the PS5 smaller than its current size. For example, we could reduce the size of the PS5 by installing two cooling fans, one for side A and one for side B. However, there was no way to make the PS5 smaller than the current size. However, this would increase the cost of the two cooling fans. In addition, controlling the rotation of the two cooling fans is "more difficult" than controlling only one fan. That is why they decided to use a single large fan to cool both sides of a single main board.

Small details around the cooling fan
 Around the cooling fan, measures have been taken to ensure user convenience and safety. For example, the PS5 uses a "dust catcher" that collects dust and other small debris blown away by the centrifugal force of the fan. According to Otori, "It's something we've wanted to introduce for a long time, and we adopted it because we could secure the space. Inside the PS5 is a space where dust blown away by the centrifugal force of the fan can be collected, and the dust can be vacuumed up through the hole that appears when the white exterior cover is removed.

 Safety measures were also taken to prevent fingers from accidentally getting into the spinning fan. Removing the outer cover reveals the cooling fan. While it is assumed that the power is turned off when removing the exterior cover, there is no chance of removing the cover without turning it off. In other words, if you remove the exterior cover while the power is on, the cooling fan will still be spinning. This is why we added a cover to prevent fingers from getting into the fan while it is spinning.

 However, because the fan cover creates air resistance, it has a three-dimensional shape and has small holes in it to allow the air to flow smoothly. According to Mr. Otori, "This cover was designed by a young engineer who had been with the company for a couple of years".

3D heat pipes and gaps between cooling fins
 Even with a large heat sink, the company has achieved both improved cooling performance and cost reduction. Although the heat pipes are used, the shape and airflow of the heat pipes have enabled the company to achieve cooling performance equivalent to that of an expensive vapour chamber with superior cooling performance and reduced costs. For example, the heat pipes are bent in a three-dimensional (three-dimensional) structure. Of the three fins in the heatsink, the heat pipe is made to pass through the upper and lower sides of one fin (fin 1), respectively, to increase the cooling performance of this fin.

 The other two fins have some innovations as well. For example, one of the fins (fin 2) is angled at an angle. In addition, we intentionally created a gap between this fin (fin 2) and the other fin (fin 3) to allow the air that has been heated by the first fin (fin 2) to be mixed with air from another source to cool it down and then sent to the second fin (fin 3) to improve the cooling effect on fin 3. I made it. If this gap is also filled with fins, the cooling effect of fin 3 is reduced because once the air is not cooled, it cannot be cooled.

On the B side, there is also a heat sink and heat pipe
 In addition to this large item, there is another heat sink in the area that is difficult to see from the disassembly video. That is the heat sink located on the B side of the main board. The main board is sandwiched between the aforementioned A side and B side by a metal shield plate, and in order to cool the power supply system such as the DC-DC converter mounted on the B side, a heat sink and a heat pipe were installed on the shield plate on the B side. In addition, the B-side shield is made of aluminum for cooling, while the A-side shield is made of steel.

There were other structural features as well. One example is the thermal conductivity between the GDDR6 compatible memory mounted on the B side of the main board and the shield board. Instead of the so-called 'stick-on' type thermal conductor in sheet form, it is coated with a liquid material that hardens like rubber after a short time. This is a measure to increase productivity in response to automation.

 In the case of the paste-type heat-conductive materials, it is difficult to remove them from the backing board by an automatic machine, so it is necessary to manually remove them. The PS5 uses almost all of the thermal conducive materials used in the PS5, whereas the PS4 series used only some of them.

So an essential a road to PS5s cooling solution. It's fascinating how much work they put into it. Hopefully it holds up well in the long term.
 

geordiemp

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So an essential a road to PS5s cooling solution. It's fascinating how much work they put into it. Hopefully it holds up well in the long term.

A sealed TIM solutuon will hold up better and much longer than thermal paste which dries out quicker.

Consoles normally get louder with time, hopefully Ps5 will buck that trend.
 
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Oct 16, 2017
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So consideration was made in making sure the standard and digital PS5 would be as identical as possible. The only reason the disc reader is sticking out the side is because if it was put in the middle of the box, there would either be an empty space in the digital edition or internal parts would have to move. That would clearly alter the cooling.

That obviously does not tell us anything about which of the two Sony prioritize. But at least we know the digital edition was planned long ago.

IMO, unless the digial edition demand really reach a fevered pitch, I don't see Sony taking it seriously. The lack of supply on the digital edition really makes it look like Sony wasn't expecting much. The more cynical of us might also argue that all-digital is sold at a bigger loss and as such Sony doesn't really want to sell more.

Fundamentally, if "all digital" is truly the future, then Sony has no reason to discount the PS5 digital edition too heavily. If people are willing to buy digital games, no point lowing your own profits to speed it up, You can go all-digital on either edition, Sony might not see much benefit selling too many $399 digital PS5s right now compared to the standard $499 PS5.
 

Agnostic2020

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So consideration was made in making sure the standard and digital PS5 would be as identical as possible. The only reason the disc reader is sticking out the side is because if it was put in the middle of the box, there would either be an empty space in the digital edition or internal parts would have to move. That would clearly alter the cooling.

That obviously does not tell us anything about which of the two Sony prioritize. But at least we know the digital edition was planned long ago.

IMO, unless the digial edition demand really reach a fevered pitch, I don't see Sony taking it seriously. The lack of supply on the digital edition really makes it look like Sony wasn't expecting much. The more cynical of us might also argue that all-digital is sold at a bigger loss and as such Sony doesn't really want to sell more.

Fundamentally, if "all digital" is truly the future, then Sony has no reason to discount the PS5 digital edition too heavily. If people are willing to buy digital games, no point lowing your own profits to speed it up, You can go all-digital on either edition, Sony might not see much benefit selling too many $399 digital PS5s right now compared to the standard $499 PS5.
Very good observation. I missed that part . Uea it seems digital edition was in play long ago
 

THE:MILKMAN

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So do the Dev Kits have this liquid metal? i prefer that shape..

I wouldn't be surprised if the the older V shape dev kit we've seen didn't use LM but the newer, quieter one Heisenberg has talked about probably does as it is likely a final or near-final dev kit. I think if the final dev kit still has six fans like the earlier one did then maybe the dev kit does cooling differently but I doubt that.
 
Oct 16, 2017
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I wouldn't be surprised if the the older V shape dev kit we've seen didn't use LM but the newer, quieter one Heisenberg has talked about probably does as it is likely a final or near-final dev kit. I think if the final dev kit still has six fans like the earlier one did then maybe the dev kit does cooling differently but I doubt that.
The dev kit was likely what the designer meant when he said that you can use regular thermal paste, but you would need a much bigger fan and cooling solution to compensate. So the V shape dev kits are using thermal paste, and reaching similar thermal performance to liquid metal by adding much larger and louder fans.
 
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ToadMan

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Tripolygon

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The size of this cooling fan determined the size of the PS5. The fan's thickness was based on the width of the PS5 when it was placed vertically (or the height if it was placed horizontally), and it was asymmetrical when viewed from the front. This is because that is where the optical disk drive is located.
Form following function design. And its a thing of beauty. They did not just build a box and tried to fit everything in.
 
Last edited:

kuncol02

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Form following function design. And its a thing of beauty. They did not just build a box and tried to fit everything in.

You sure? Next sentence says opposite.

The size of this cooling fan determined the size of the PS5. The fan's thickness was based on the width of the PS5 when it was placed vertically (or the height if it was placed horizontally), and it was asymmetrical when viewed from the front. This is because that is where the optical disk drive is located.
 

onesvenus

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Are we resorting to making things up now?
The quote in the article doesn't talk about clocks being fixed two years ago. That's something that Agnostic2020 Agnostic2020 added.

The exact quote, which you can find in the second page of the article says "when the PS5 hardware configuration and shape were roughly decided".
Not only it doesn't talk about clocks but it also says "roughly" which means that some details where up for discussion
 

-Arcadia-

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Wars aside, I’ll be interested to see how the PS5 performs, and maybe have a post-mortem detailing all the decisions they made.

It’s a quite unique console design, one that (alongside, I’m sure, significant cost expenditure) let them also hit $400 with a model, previously thought impossible for this generation.

I’m more fascinated by the gameplay implications though, particularly Cerny talking about the overall benefits of high clock speeds, getting rid of the ‘race to idle’, etc. There’s a lot of really creative, unusual stuff going on here, it seems like.