I finally made the leap into the world of Blu-ray last week with an impulse purchase of a Playstation 3. I found a great deal for one using Microsoft’s Live.com cashback on Ebay, netting a PS3 for about $250. I primarily bought it to use as a Blu-ray player.
Overall, I am impressed with the value of the PS3. This is a console that is begging to be connected to a HDTV. The UI looks attractive (especially at 1080p) but sometimes feels cluttered. Quitting games is a bit awkward. You have to hit the PS button and select “Quit Game” from the navigation.
Blu-ray playback looks great and the built-in wireless is a nice touch. I was disappointed to realize that I could not use my Logitech Harmony remote with it since the PS3 only supports Bluetooth remotes. I ended up buying a PS3 remote at Amazon for about $20.
The Playstation Network works well, allowing you to download demos, trailers, and games. Being able to download content in the background is a nice touch. You can play a game while downloading trailers etc. I only wish there were more free games that you could download.
Streaming of media from a computer is awkward, especially if your files are buried several folders down. I can’t see myself using this feature too much. Maybe the experience will improve when I set up my wired network. Right now, it is just too slow.
The system is noisier than I thought it would be, especially with all the criticism the Xbox 360 has gotten for being too loud. Apparently, the PS3 is louder when is laying flat like a CE device. Unfortunately, I do not have the room to “stand it up” in my cabinet.
Last but not least, the games look fantastic but I am surprised by the lack of original titles for the PS3. Most of the major titles are available for the Xbox 360 or even PCs. I am not too interested in playing BioShock on a PS3.
One thing is clear to me about the PS3: it is definitely a computer. From the USB ports to the upgrading of the “operating system,” the PS3 is marginally a plug and play device. For someone who tinkers around with computers, the PS3 was easy to set up but I could see the average consumer struggling to setup the wireless connection and/or upgrading the operating system.
I have not yet downloaded any HD movies from the Playstation Network. When I do, I will post my thoughts.