to ps3 or not to ps3

now that the blu-ray/hd dvd war is over, it’s time to settle down and get a blu-ray player. one of the compelling reasons why hd dvd was popular amongst the next gen format adopters is its significantly cheaper hardware costs. with players getting as cheap as $100, hd dvd hardware is certainly far more attractive than the $300-500 blu-ray units. in addition, the blu-ray players seem to have a lot of forward compatibility issues. because they were rushed to market, some players don’t seem to be upgradeable, while others suffer from some performance problems. ridiculous!

the one safe bet appears to be the sony playstation 3. it looks like one of the only future-proof players out on the market…it also happens to be a very good player as well.

so the big question is…if i were to get a playstation 3, what would i use it for?
1) blu-ray player
2) dvd player
3) media center
4) game console
5) linux box

some annoyances with the ps3 even before owning it:
1) it doesn’t have an IR port for the remote control. this requires you to purchase an add-on dongle to make it accept IR remotes (like a all-in-one harmony remote)
2) 40GB model only has 2 USB ports. one of those is already going to be taken for the remote IR dongle.
3) there’s no good wireless keyboard for the ps3 that incorporates the controller buttons
4) vibration in the controllers are gone…so no more rumble…they announced dual shock 3 controllers in japan, but none here in the states yet…

some things that i’m really looking forward to:
1) replacing my xbox media center with a device that is capable of playing HD videos. the poor original xbox just didn’t have the processing power to do 720p encoded video.
2) installing linux on the ps3. why? i’m not really sure, but it just seems really cool.
3) changing my netflix subscription to blu-ray and watching blu-ray movies. i’ve been craving some high def movie watching.
4) rock band. it’s the first game i’m going to get for the console. not sure what other games i would get after that, but this one seems like it is a no-brainer.

some things that i semi-regret now:
1) i probably should have gotten a receiver with HDMI ports. i didn’t think it’d be an issue really, but HDMI (when it works) really does make things a whole lot easier. i just ordered a toslink cable for audio and an HDMI=>DVI cable for the PS3 to my receiver.
2) i wish my tv wasn’t as high as it is. it’s gonna make playing time crisis a pain. (probably my second game for the ps3 =P)

3 thoughts on “to ps3 or not to ps3”

  1. re: HDMI – at the time we were talking about your Outlaw, HDMI recievers were starting to get more and more popular and were much more expensive than what they are today (ie Onkyo 805). you and I both know that timing is always tricky when it comes to this stuff. the upgrade bug will often bite.

    besides the A+V over one single cable, I’d say the biggest benefit of HDMI is the lossless audio. yes, there is analog out but there seems to be bass management quirks (ie XA2; not sure about Blu Ray players with analog outs) and PS3 is HDMI only anyway. what you don’t know can’t hurt you – if you haven’t enjoyed dolby digital/DTS for that long, enjoy it. for the longest time I had dolby digital only via toslink optical /coax and DD is no slouch. I won’t lie – there is an appreciable difference when it comes to lossless audio (airiness, better dynamics, less veiled) but unless you actively go out to do an A/B or watch / collect a lot of Blu Rays with lossless audio tracks, it may not mean very much to you.

  2. well, the ps3 has been ordered and it’s just a matter of time before it arrives. hopefully, i’ll have the cables that i need to get the most out of what i’ve got and we’ll see just how much of a difference i will be able to tell.

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