A few days ago Mark Cerny and Andrew House explained that at one point Sony Computer Entertainment explored the possibility of releasing the PS4 without a hard disk, and today Naughty Dog Programmer Drew Thaler, who worked on the PS4 while it was in development (on the PlayGo system) gave more details about it the option:
Yeah, we spent so much effort working on whether we could make a PS4 without a HDD. Just wouldn’t have been the same.
No HDD had a precedent — the X360 Core — but we felt it would suck for both devs and players. Glad we didn’t go there.
We considered all kinds of things. Hard to beat discs for capacity vs cost though.
Thaler also explained that home consoles’ loading times are usually slower than on portable consoles because of RAM and screen sizes: “Loading less data at lower resolution is always faster.”
Interestingly, we saw a screenshot of one of Naughty Dog’s systems a few days ago, and some wondered why the PS4 was still defined “Orbis.” Thaler explained that the reason for that is very simple:
Ever tried to rename 100 different parts of a giant chain of tools and code? : ) if it ain’t broke…
One of Thaler’s colleagues, Sony ICE Team’s Cort Stratton also revealed something quite interesting about development on the PS4. Its GPU performance analysis and debugging tool is named Razor GPU. Interestingly enough he confirmed that the CPU profiler is also called Razor.