A rumour has suggested that the Playstation 4 will be able to use 4.5GB of RAM for games. Digital Foundry reports that the PS4 will use 3.5GB of RAM, leaving 4.5GB for games. According to ‘further sources’, 1GB of ‘flexible memory’ may be ‘reclaimed’ from the OS reservation, based on availability which makes 5.5GB of RAM accessible.
Internal documents from Sony say that 4.5GB is the ‘baseline amount’ of guaranteed memory available for games-makers and will be most likely what a majority of upcoming PS4 releases/launch titles will be using. Developers can request to use the ‘flexible memory’, which could be used to help enhance several elements of the game. Though, the catch is if it isn’t ‘needed’ by the Playstation OS.
The dev kits for Playstation 4 currently have a ‘Game Memory Budget Mode’ in the debug settings, which feature two settings: normal and large, with normal allowing 4.5GB of memory usage and large ‘boosting’ the amount to 5.25GB of memory usage. It’s possible that the allocation will make it possible for features such as live swapping of games and applications, which was shown during the PS4 User Interface trailer.
To compare, it is pointed out that Xbox One will use 3GB of RAM for its operating system, and that both systems will allocate the use of two Jaguar CPU cores to the operating system; Digital Foundry states that this is a “disproportionately higher level of RAM than one might expect”.
It should be noted that the PS4 is using the far faster GDDR5 RAM compared to the Xbox One’s pedestrian DDR 3. The Playstation 4 is due for release at the end of the year, supposedly November.