Gaming Console 101

Is PS5 4K Native or Upscaled?

One of the hallmark features that sets PS5 apart from the previous generation of consoles is that it promises to deliver NATIVE 4K resolution as supposed to upscaled 4K, making every pixel pop and creating an immersive experience like no other.

But that begs the question, is PS5 4K native or upscaled truly and what is native or upscaled 4K in the first place?

The simple answer to the question is that PS5 has the capability to offer native 4K but whether a game offers native 4K in the first place depends upon how taxing the game and its graphics are on the PS5 hardware.

In short, while PS5 DOES offer native 4K support, it all depends upon what game you play.

Let me explain this topic in detail.

What is the Difference Between Native and Upscaled 4K?

Before we look further into the PS5’s 4K capability, it is first important to understand the difference between native and upscaled 4K.

Native 4K is the Real Deal

It is the crème de la crème of 4K gaming. Native 4K refers to the console’s ability to render the game at true 3840×2160 pixels. Meaning EACH frame is rendered separately at this resolution.

This results in breathtakingly sharp and vivid picture quality.

Upscaled 4K is the Second Best

Upscaled 4K was introduced with the previous generation of consoles, particularly with the PS4 Pro, whereby the consoles first rendered the game at FHD or 2K (QHD) and then through clever tricks of algorithms enhanced the game to 4K resolution.

Your TV or monitor receives the image from the console as 4K, not knowing that it was actually an FHD or QHD image, to begin with.

Native vs upscaled 4k
Source: YouTube @Dee Batch . Blurry upscaled 4K (Left) vs Sharp Native 4K (Right) on Rise of the Tomb Raider.

Native 4K is obviously the superior of the two. While upscaled 4K isn’t half as bad, it is certainly noticeable to gamers with a keen eye who can spot and appreciate the nuances in the graphics quality.

PS5’s Dynamic Resolution Scaling

A more relevant term for PS5 generation is Dynamic Resolution Scaling as compared to Upscaling.

While this was introduced for PS4 Pro, very few titles supported this feature back then and the majority of the titles were still only 4K upscaled.

Dynamic Resolution Scaling is rather popular with PS5 though.

This is basically a clever technique that allows a game to adjust its resolution in real-time based on the demands of a particular scene.

This is done in order to preserve the frame rate.

For instance, during an intense action sequence with lots of visual effects, PS5 may decide to lower the native 4K resolution of a game to native QHD in order to preserve the smooth frame rate.

Once the action calms down, it would then revert the resolution back to native 4K.

god of war ragnarok display modes

Some games actually give you the choice of the gaming mode you wish and whether you are ok with dynamic resolution scaling or not.

For instance, in God of War Ragnarok, you can choose the “Favor Quality” preset which would enable the game to run at native 4K CONSISTENTLY but would be capped at 30 FPS.

On the other hand, you could choose the “Favor Quality + HFR + VRR” which would unlock the frame rate and the resolution allows the PS5 to dynamically scale the resolution between 4K (2160P) to 1800P depending upon the complexity of the scene.

Unlocked frame rate particularly goes hand in glove with the VRR technology which reduces the screen tears or stutters that may manifest in fluctuating frame rates.

So Is PS5 4K Native or Upscaled?

So as discussed above, PS5 is native 4K with dynamic resolution feature at work.

Meaning, PS5 has the ability to render the games at native 4K resolution but with Dynamic Resolution Scaling. PS5 has the prowess to judge what resolution to render the game at to preserve the frame rate.

Also, it is absolutely worth noting that NOT ALL games support Native 4K even on PS5 at all.

Take for instance A Plague Tale: Requiem. This game DOES NOT have support for native 4K at all. Instead, it offers maximum support for native QHD at best with occasional upscaling to 4K.

In addition to that, whether Dynamic Resolution Scaling will work or not also depends upon whether a game supports it or not.

The following is a list of some of the 4K games that support 4K at native, dynamic, or upscale on PS5.

Game4K Type
A Plague Tale: InnocenceNative 4K @ 60 FPS
Apex LegendsNative 4K @ 60 FPS
Assassin’s Creed ValhallaNative 4K @ 60 FPS
Assetto Corsa CompetizioneDynamic 4K @ 60 FPS
BiomutantNative 4K @ 30 FPS
Dynamic 4K @ 40-60 FPS
Borderlands 3Native 4K @ 60 FPS
Dynamic 4K @ 120 FPS
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare IIDynamic 4K @ 60 FPS
DeathloopDynamic 4K @ 60 FPS
Devil May Cry V: Special EditionNative 4K @ 30 FPS
Dying Light 2Native 4K @ 30 FPS
Dynamic 4K @ 60 FPS
Elden RingNative 4K @ 30 FPS
FortniteNative 4K @ 60 FPS
Ghost of Tsushima: Director’s CutDynamic 4K @ 60FPS
Ghostwire: TokyoDynamic 4K @ 60 FPS
God of War: RagnarokNative 4K @ 30 FPS
Dynamic 4K @ 60 FPS
Grand Theft Auto V: Enhanced EditionNative 4K @ 60 FPS
Hogwarts LegacyNative 4K @ 30 FPS
Hunting Simulator 2Dynamic 4K @ 60 FPS
Iron Harvest: Complete EditionDynamic 4K @ 60 FPS
Jumanji: The Video GameNative 4K @ 60 FPS
Upscale 4K @ 120 FPS
A Plague Tale: RequiemUpscale 4K @ 60 FPS
Uncharted: Legacy Of Thieves CollectionNative 4K @ 30 FPS
Watch Dogs LegionNative 4K @ 30 FPS

For a more comprehensive list visit

You can see from the table above, the majority of the AAA titles above support 4K at dynamic resolution. Native resolution is only supported at 30 FPS on the newer titles.

And if you take the example of Plague Tale: Requiem, you don’t get native 4K at all.

The good news, however, is that games like Plague Tale: Requiem is an outlier and hopefully as the game engines adapt,  we will get to see almost all of the games working on at least 4K @ 30 FPS on PS5 natively.

Also Read: Can You Use Any HDMI Cable for PS5?

Final Words

PS5 supports 4K natively on the vast majority of the games. While it may not support 4K natively on 60 FPS for many games, 30 FPS is almost guaranteed.

Time will tell how the future of 4K shapes up for PS5 games, but the list of natively supported 4K games is ever-increasing.

Atif Qazi

Atif Qazi is the founder of and a huge gaming nerd. Thanks to the vast gaming experience under his belt, you can often find him writing detailed pieces of content on gaming hardware and console. But in all honesty, nothing gives him more pleasure than 'one-shotting' everyone as a stealth archer in ESO: Skyrim.

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