Report: The PS5 10.3 TFLOP number could be misleading
One analysis of the hardware offerings from Sony and Microsoft points to a greater disparity between platforms if judged by the same criteria.
There are a few sources that are better than others when it comes to pure tech. Usually, we consider Digital Foundry to be the most trustworthy (which often makes them a source for us), but another from the top tier is Wccftech. And that site has now shared a lenghty piece about what to expect from PlayStation 5, and it comes to a somewhat surprising conclusion: they think the 10.3 TFLOP claims is misleading:
"Things get murkier though, while Microsoft's reveal was excruciatingly clear, succinct and allowed third-party testers like Digital Foundry to get closeups out, I found the Sony Playstation 5 reveal to be somewhat lacking in clarity and almost, deliberately vague. My primary pain point was when the Sony PS5 was advertised to ship with 10.3 TFLOPs and then the words "variable clock rate" were uttered in the same breath. This, as many of you have guessed is misleading."
The reason why Sony's advertised figure isn't exactly comparable is explained like this:
"Sony PS5 has something called a variable clock rate. What that means is that the console will not run the GPU at 2.23 GHz all the time. Since Microsoft's clock is a static number, just because PS5's clock rate is variable makes the 10.28 TFLOPs number uncomparable to the Xbox Series X and misleading. This is because XSX is displaying the "sustained TFLOPs" figure while PS5 is displaying the "peak TFLOPs" figure."
According to Wccftech, Microsoft might, in fact, have underclocked the Xbox Series X, and if they had opted for the variable clock rate as well, it might have hit higher numbers than the 12 TFLOPS (although this is a speculative claim):
"Microsoft might actually have underclocked its own console to make way for a "fine wine" philosophy as we have seen in the past. In fact, if they were to approach a dynamic clocking philosophy as well, they can hit an astounding 14.6 TFLOPs figure (using the PS5 clocks) - which is absolutely insane for a console. That said, you don't want to do that. Optimizing games is hard and having a static clock with no power fluctuation shenanigans is always easier to work with than a dynamic approach."
Fortunately, they end the article in a way that everyone can likely accept, and that's the fact that PC is still top of the pile:
"NVIDIA has retained its performance crown (as always) at 16.1 TFLOPs on the RTX 2080 Ti but just barely."