Nintendo Switch vs. PlayStation 4: Which Console Is Right for You?

Do you want to play the latest Nintendo games on the go? Or are you more interested in exclusive PlayStation 4 titles? Don’t worry if you’re not sure which console is the right choice for you! We’ll go over the capabilities of both systems, the games that can be played on them, and the overall performance that you can expect from both devices.

In this Nintendo Switch vs. PS4 face-off, we’ll compare the two consoles to help you decide which is a better fit for your gaming style and preferences.

PS4 vs. Nintendo Switch – Design and Features

Both consoles have a lot to offer in terms of features. When it comes to its design, the Switch, especially in its original red and blue Neon colour scheme, has a more appealing aesthetic than the PS4.

It consists of the Switch console itself, two Joy-Con controllers, and the Switch Dock. The dock can be used to play games on an external screen, charge the console, and connect an additional USB accessory.

The PlayStation 4 is slightly larger and heavier than the Nintendo Switch. It features a clean, tiered design, subtle logos, and amazing features. It’s worth noting that, while both black and white PS4 models are available, the black version is far more common.

Nintendo Switch vs. PS4 – Hardware and Specs

The Nintendo Switch’s hardware differs significantly from that of its competitors. Unlike PlayStation consoles, which use more traditional computing power, the Nintendo Switch makes use of a modified Nvidia Tegra X1 processor, an ARM-based mobile device processor.

The Switch can be used for up to six hours on a single charge, or nine hours with the newest model, and can be recharged using the dock in about three hours.

On the other hand, the PlayStation 4 is powered by a 1.84 teraflop AMD Jaguar APU – 4.20 teraflops on PlayStation 4 Pro. Despite being released years before the Switch, even the base PS4 eclipses the Nintendo Switch’s hardware power. Moreover, it holds up quite well with the latest games, despite the new releases being developed with the much more powerful PlayStation 5 in mind.

The PlayStation 4 has standard home console features such as an HDMI out, a port for connecting a PlayStation camera or the PlayStation VR system, and two USB 3.1 ports. The PlayStation 4 Slim also reduced the number of accidental disc ejections by switching from sensor-based buttons to physical buttons.

The Nintendo Switch has a USB-C port, a game card slot, and a MicroSD card slot that is also compatible with MicroSDHC and MicroSDXC cards of up to 2 TB. This more than makes up for the somewhat lacking 32 GB of internal storage, although the memory cards do incur an extra cost.

PS4 vs. Nintendo Switch – Graphics, Display, and Resolution

The Nintendo Switch and the Switch Lite both feature 720p LCD displays, although the Lite’s screen is a bit smaller at 5.5 inches compared to the regular console’s 6.2 inches. Meanwhile, the OLED variant has a 7-inch 720p display. All versions of the console support 1080p output at up to 60 FPS when docked and connected to an external display.

In Sony’s corner, PlayStation 4 graphics are displayed in 1080p on the Slim and in upscaled 4K on the Pro version of the console. Both variants support HDR, thus offering greatly enhanced contrast and visual fidelity on HDR-compatible displays.

That said, the PlayStation 4 has a definite edge over the Switch when it comes to raw power and the quality of the graphics, although Nintendo’s console has the obvious advantage in that it doubles as a portable handheld device.

PlayStation vs. Nintendo – Controllers

The Switch has two controllers called Joy-Cons. These are especially adaptable, serving as either a single, fully-featured controller, a set of motion controls, or two separate, standalone controllers, each with a joystick and a set of shoulder buttons. Infrared and near-field communication readers are built in for use with select games and peripherals.

For the most part, the PlayStation 4 DualShock controller is similar to older PlayStation controllers. It has a familiar face-button layout, symmetrical control sticks and triggers, and a “Share” button for taking screenshots, video recordings, and Twitch streaming.

We should note that the DualShock 4 does have a built-in motion sensor and that it offers limited motion tracking when used in tandem with the PlayStation Camera, but you’d have to buy the PlayStation Move controllers separately for proper motion controls on the console.

There are many different Switch controllers available, including the widely-praised Switch Pro that’s great for action games, but none of them feel quite as good in your hands as the DualShock 4. We can confidently state that the DualShock 4 controller for the PlayStation 4 is one of the most comfortable, ergonomic, and user-friendly controllers on the market.

Storage and Disc Drive

Both the Switch and the PlayStation 4 support physical and digital games. The PlayStation 4 comes with an HD Blu-ray drive, whereas Switch games come on unique game cards. On top of that, games can be bought and downloaded digitally on each console’s respective online store.

As far as storage goes, the internal hard drive of the PS4 Slim comes with a storage capacity of either 500 GB or 1 TB, and the Pro only has a 1 TB variant. The console’s drive can always be upgraded and replaced, and it also supports external storage. Depending on your needs, preferences, and the games that you play, expanded storage might be necessary.

Meanwhile, the Nintendo Switch features only 32 GB of internal storage, although it is quite enough for the generally lightweight Nintendo games. And if you ever find yourself running low on storage, expanding it is as simple as popping in an extra memory card, and the console supports capacities up to a whopping 2 TB.

PS4 Games vs. Nintendo Switch Games

The PlayStation 4 has been on the market for almost 10 years, and its library of exclusive and cross-platform games is impressive. Sony’s first and second-party games consistently rank among the best of the year, and franchises such as Assassin’s Creed and Batman: Arkham Asylum, as well as exclusives such as The Last of Us Part II, have seen great success.

The Nintendo Switch is also home to exclusive games such as Pokemon Sword and Shield, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, and Animal Crossing: New Horizons.

It was once possible to argue that PlayStation 4 games were more “mature” than Nintendo’s. Although this is still somewhat true for first-party titles, the Switch demonstrated that it can provide a rich library of games for any generation of gamers, so it’s no wonder that the Nintendo Switch was Canada’s best-selling console for a little more than two years.

So, while the PlayStation 4 has an extensive and more varied library of games, the Nintendo Switch has also diversified its selection, so both consoles are on fairly even terms in this respect. As such, your final decision will likely be influenced by exclusive titles and based on additional features offered by each console.

Nintendo Switch vs. PS4 – Online Gaming

The Nintendo Switch’s online system is fairly basic, and it does not support voice chat unless you use a headset and a third-party app on your mobile device. The PlayStation 4’s online service, on the other hand, is designed to create social multiplayer experiences, making it the better choice if you want to spend the majority of your gaming time online with your friends.

Multiplayer on both platforms requires the user to pay a subscription fee for the PlayStation Plus or the Nintendo Switch Online services. The Switch’s only advantage over the PlayStation 4 in online play is its lower price. The annual fee for Nintendo Switch Online is $24.99 CAD, whereas the yearly PlayStation Plus subscription starts at $69.99 CAD.

Media

The PlayStation 4 really shines when it comes to activities other than video games. In addition to playing Blu-rays, the console can also play DVDs and CDs, which is great news for those with an extensive library of physical media.

Additionally, there is a wide selection of apps for video and music streaming, so if you need a home entertainment center and not just a gaming console, there’s a good reason to buy a PS4.

The Nintendo Switch doesn’t support physical media, and it has a more limited selection of streaming apps, so it lags behind the PlayStation 4 in this respect.

Nintendo vs. Sony – Price

The Nintendo Switch is one of the company’s more affordable home consoles. Although recent global events had made the system more difficult to find, many carriers now appear to be stocking up again.

The PS4 consoles are in roughly the same price range as the Switch at the moment, and you can usually find hardware bundles with a few games at the same price for the holidays.

Bottom Line – Nintendo Switch or the PS4?

The Switch combines the convenience of portability with the advantages of being a current-generation console; as such, the addition of new games and updates should only boost its popularity in the future.

Meanwhile, the PlayStation 4 is well into its swan song following the release of the PlayStation 5, which means fewer and fewer new titles will be released for it. Despite this, it still has a vast selection of high-quality games.

Overall, whether you’ll opt for a powerful home console or for a portable system comes down to personal preference. As far as our Nintendo Switch vs. PlayStation 4 comparison goes, neither device stands out as the clear winner, as both of them offer a different gaming experience with unique exclusive games.


FAQ

How powerful is the Switch compared to the PS4?

When it comes to overall computing power, the Nintendo Switch falls short of the PlayStation 4. However, given that the Nintendo Switch is a portable console, it’s not surprising that it’s not as powerful as a home system.

Is the Nintendo Switch better than the PS4?

When it comes to the Nintendo Switch vs. PS4 debate, it all comes down to what you want in a console and what games you want to play. If you want a powerful console with great graphics, the PlayStation is probably the better choice. However, if portability and unique gameplay experiences are more important to you, the Nintendo Switch is the better choice.

Can you play Nintendo games on PS4?

No, Nintendo Switch games can’t be played on the PS4.

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