Playstation 3 - 3 week update

Discussion in 'Games' started by Shacklebolt, Feb 7, 2007.

  1. Shacklebolt macrumors 6502a


    Sep 2, 2004
    I'm starting to come around to the PS3....

    ... as a media center. The drive has been working very well so far with the three types of media I've used (CD, DVD, Blu-Ray). As I mentioned, the visualizer is AWESOME! Errr... right.

    I'm sold on nex-gen DVD. I understand that a lot of people think that downloadable nex-gen will be what's next - that may be. But first, multi-terabyte hard drives are going to have to come standard with computers for that to be feasable, and internet connection speeds will have to increase well over ten-fold (even if it took 2 hours to download a movie, that's still about 90 minutes more than it would take to drive to the store, and buy the darn thing), and I don't see that happening for years. Compact Discs are still the number one format for music, because a) they sound better and b) people are a big fan of tangible products.

    That said, the picture of Blu-Ray (and HD-DVD) is nice, and as soon as the titles come around, I think it will catch on. Blu-ray has a leg up on HD-DVD by the sheer number of Blu-ray players already sold (as PS3s)... but when HD-DVD players get cheaper, I'm assuming they'll be competitive. On an editorial note, it makes almost no sense to have two almost identitcal formats. Until special features and extras for movies are in high-definition, or until a more advanced codec pops up, a next-gen DVD will NEVER be filled up by a single movie.

    I do think that the PS3 is curently a better value than the 360... but only kind of. Yes, with wireless and HD-DVD, the 360 is 700 dollars. But the fact is, the PS3 is so far behind the 360 in terms of content, it's going to have trouble catching up for years. Seriously - years. So 360 = worse value, but people shouldn't care because the games are just so much better. So, so much.

    But that doesn't change the fact that, if you're a nex-gen DVD fan, the PS3 IS pretty great as a media center. It looks nice enough to fit in well with an expensive television, has a fan that actually operates at a reasonable volume - even if the next 360 incorporates an HD-DVD player, they would have to make the fan much, much, MUCH quieter for me to care. So... yeah. I look forward to the day when Sony starts putting out good games in a reasonable volume. A lot of people say that the take-off game for the 360 was Gears of War, but the fact is, Oblivian and a few good Rainbow Six games had already been out for a while. I don't know if MGS4 is going to alone make up for the dearth of content.

    That's all for now.
  2. darkwing macrumors 65816

    Jan 6, 2004
    Thanks for the review. I agree that the 360 is a better buy right now, but I feel that for me (and the types of games I want to play) the PS3 is a better buy down the road. I don't really care about blu-ray movies whatsoever and don't care if the format lives or dies. If the 360 keeps having beutiful titles like Lost Planet and Blue Dragon I might just pony up and get one.

    I guess it's hard to say I'll "never" buy one when so many anti-MS mac users are getting into the game. :)

    I'm not sure it'll take years to catch up though. Lots of great games coming out for the PS3 this year. Might be a while before they catch up in terms of quantity, but the quality may even itself up by year's end. (I feel that overall the 360 has higher quality games because the devs know the system better, but that's just my opinion. Full Auto 2 has a horrible frame rate on the ps3 for example. I've heard that Blazing Angels crawls when too many explosions are on screen.)
  3. Haoshiro macrumors 68000


    Feb 9, 2006
    USA, KS
    Well actually as long as the movie downloads at close to the length of the movie you can basically download and watch one instantly so long as the client supports streaming.

    If it takes 2 hours to download a 2 hour movie, someone could basically start watching the movie within just a few minutes, while the movie continues to download in the background. Xbox 360 is already doing this in fact, although my internet connection isn't fast enough to start playing the HD content in the first few minutes, I still have to wait a while. Even then, at least I can do other things (like play games) rather then spending 15-30 minutes to drive somewhere.

    Then again, I actually use Netflix now, and supliment it with occasional download content.

    I do agree that HD-DVD/Blu-ray looks great on an equiped display, and take "game console" out of the equation for PS3 and it's definitely a good value for someone wanting to buy in to an HD player.

    Neither PS3/360 are great media centers in my opinion for HD content that isn't on-disc though. At best they only do 802.11g, and that really isn't quite fast enough to stream HD content. It seems like it should be, but even trying to watch a 720p video over a wireless g signal has caused occasional stutters in my experience.

    So for a good wireless HD media center we are going to need 802.11n (like in Apple TV). There is a chance Microsoft will release a new wireless accessory that supports n, and until they do I'll stick with a wired connection for better performance.
  4. Shacklebolt thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Sep 2, 2004
    So? Alright, say you want to own 200 discs worth of content (like I already own on DVD). Do you own the, what... 10 TB of storage space it's going to take to have that all? People really are fans of tangible products - DVDs that you can lend to friends, and have lent to you, and cost exactly the same. They don't want stuff that it takes 24 hours to download. Plus, downloadable HD movies won't be licensed for years and years. Downloadable DVD-quality content isn't even available yet. Who knows how long nex-gen content will take.
  5. Haoshiro macrumors 68000


    Feb 9, 2006
    USA, KS
    Well, it'd probably save people money. Not sure where you get 10TB, as a full HD movie probably won't even break 10GB (current 720p offerings are 6-7GB).

    Doing the math at 200 movies, 15GB each, that's 3TB.

    You can buy a 500GB HDD for $140, so 6 of those would be $840; or $4.20/movie. Now consider downloadable movies costing a premium price of $15/ea and that's almost $20/movie versus the $25-40 charged for HD movies on HD-DVD/Blu-ray right now. You definitely save money and you don't have to buy all the space you will ever need at once. Personally I keep a MUCH smaller collection then that because I don't often like to re-watch movies enough for it to be cost effective for me (but that's just me).

    As for DVD-quality movies, I think you are very mistaken. Online download rental companies have been doing this for years although it's only on Windows most of the time. HD (likely just 720p) content is readily available. iTunes sells movies above/near DVD quality, but not HD yet. And Xbox 360 has offered HD 720p TV/Movies for some time as well.

    The lending portion is a problem though for plenty of people I'm sure. Personally I hate lending movies, especially if they cost $30/$40 like my HD-DVDs.
  6. SpankyPenzaanz macrumors 6502a


    Sep 4, 2006
    What happens when newer better codecs come along really bring digital downloads a more feasible choice. I mean it is already for me and the 24"imac I own does a great job with itunes content and the stuff I have "backed up" to an external fw drive
  7. JackAxe macrumors 68000


    Jul 6, 2004
    In a cup of orange juice.
    Maybe a 4k video would fill up 50 gigs?

    My friend downloaded the House of Flying Daggers trailer and it looked awful, far worse than a standard DVD, which was unexusable. Sony should probably shoot whom ever prepped that trailer.

  8. Shacklebolt thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Sep 2, 2004
    Nex-Gen DVDs are all ALREADY 1080p. 720p won't cut it, just to be downloadable. Again, you're underestimating people's desire to have their media be tangible. CDs are not gone, even though AIFFs and Lossless can easily fit on a hard drive. Hell, a current iPod can hold far more LOSSLESS files then the original iPod could hold MP3 files.

    Downloaded movies on iTunes are NOT dvd quality. Like the television shows, they come up just short enough for people to still want to buy DVDs.
  9. ddrueckhammer macrumors 65816


    Aug 8, 2004
    America's Wang
    Your summary is well thought out with the exception of the PS3 being a better media center.

    Blueray is far from winning the HD content war so I wouldn't exactly call having it implemented a benefit as of yet. Most people still don't own HDTVs and could care less about HD media. This will change but it will take a year or two at least. Personally, I still think HD-DVD has the leg up because the disks are cheaper and porn is on HD-DVDs. I really don't think the extra space matters that much to publishers or consumers at this point. So, once someone releases an HD-DVD player below $600 it may start to catch up as a format. IMO, the general public doesn't buy gaming consoles as DVD just doesn't cross their minds. If they did, the PS3 would be seeing better sales than it is. There will probably, be $200 set top HD media players out there far before the PS3 is $200 and this is the "sweet spot" for most consumers in America at least.

    I am squarely in the On Demand HD content delivery camp. Currently, I can get DVD quality movies "On Demad" (no wait) on my Motorola Verizon Fios box over fiber. The only problem is that they are older than what is currently new at the video store. Verizon says on their site that they can push out content at up to 50Mbps. While I don't think this is quite high enough for streaming HD content, It might make 1-2 hour HD content downloads feasible in the future. None of the online stores can beat the cable/phone companies in this instance. All the cable/phone companies have to do is get Hollywood to sign over the content and it is game over for Apple, Walmart, Amazon, Microsoft etc. This could happen now but I imagine that it might take a few years and some serious negociating for it to happen...There is no need to own a physical copy of anything if you can rent it at any time instantly for under $4. I think that people value convenience over a tangible product any day. Or at least people in my generation (under 30).

    As far as which console is the best media center, I have to humbley disagree and say that the 360 is far superior in its media center capabilities. As someone else said, if Microsoft starts selling 802.11n dongles for the back of the 360 instead of g ones, it will be capable of transporting all of your HD content from your computer and playing it wirelessly. Already, it allows you to stream your iTunes, iPhoto, and Movies (with the help of connect 360), as well as, buy SD movies/TV shows, and rent HD ones from the marketplace. Sure, the PS3 has Linux but Microsoft has delivered (at least for Microsoft) a very intuitive and useful media center app on the 360. 802.11n is here, maybe it is only draft spec, but my iMac has had it for 6 months...All I have to do is go buy a new Airport Extreme. Wireless HD content streaming is the reason for 802.11n so I expect it to be quickly adopted. At least by tech dorks like me.
  10. twoodcc macrumors P6


    Feb 3, 2005
    Right side of wrong
    nice review :)

    i agree for the most part in what you're saying (don't have a PS3)
  11. amtctt macrumors regular

    Sep 8, 2006
    I couldn't agree more. this is exactly why downloadable movies will take quite a while to catch on. not because technology won't be there to make 1080p movies downloadable very quickly, but because people like stuff. they like to collect. That's why tons of people buy a $15 dvd and watch it once, where as they could have spent that $15 on a month of blockbuster online and watched a ton of movies. They want to collect that product. I'm totally guilty of this. i try and hit movies in my dvd collection more than once, but sometimes it doesn't happen.
  12. Haoshiro macrumors 68000


    Feb 9, 2006
    USA, KS
    I don't disagree, I have a number of movies myself that I really had no business buying with as infrequently as I rewatch films.

    In the end it seems rather sad, lol... like the last thing people like to collect is money they could save by not literally wasting it.

    Realistically the tangible product in terms of movies and music is simply some ink, plastic, and a license. You don't really own the movie nor the music. Yet somehow it's different, and people like to have stacks of retail CDs, which they then likely took the discs out and put them in a zipped carrying case, later taking them out to rip them to their computer and put them on there iPod/etc... rarely ever even looking at the tangible product wasting space on a shelf somewhere. But still somehow feeling better that they know they have it.

    We humans are strange funny creatures... are we secretly related to Pack Rats, perhaps?

    Edit: On the other hand, the success of things like iTunes for music and Xbox Live Arcade for casual games suggests very large amounts of people might be getting over their mental hurdles and accepting this whole "digital" thing.

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