Sony’s has announced that the long-awaited followup to their Playstation 2 console, the PlayStation 3 (PS3), will be available from November 17, starting at $829.
Unlike the Xbox 360, which has an optional hard-drive, both versions of the PS3 have storage, with the 20GB version at $829, and the 60GB model at $999.
This is in stark contrast to the US pricing, which is $499USD ($650AUD) for the 20GB and $600USD ($778AUD) for the 60GB.
The console will only be available in “Clear Black” finish initially, with other colours yet to be confirmed.
The console boasts the processing power of the Cell and Nvidia’s RSX processors, and promises backwards compatibility with a “vast catalog” of PlayStation and PlayStation2 software titles.
The console is seen as the spearhead for Blu-ray acceptance in this country, and the Cell processor will enable the PS3 to replay Blu-ray discs (BD) at a bit rate of multiplex 48Mbps, the maximum bit rate defined in BD standards.
As with the Xbox 360, the provision of Giga-bit Ethernet and a pre-installed hard disk drive (HDD) in the PS3, will enable to users to download and buy content and on-line games.
The PS3 also comes with an HDMI port as standard, which supports up to 1080i/1080p flat panel displays.
Unlike the noisy Xbox 360, Sony claims to have incorporate silent cooling methods which keep the noise level to that of the current slim-line PlayStation 2.
The console also boasts a new controller after ditching the unpopular ‘boomerang’ device originally previewed. The new controller for PS3 is a refinement of the existing Playstation controller, which also employs a six-axis movement sensor, so users can move the controller itself for added functionality.
The controller will communicate with the console via Bluetooth, and can be connected via a mini USB cable to recharge and for wired useage. Due to the motion sensor onboard the controller, it no longer is able to support DUALSHOCK vibration.
The PLAYSTATION3 full specifications are as follows:
CPU: Cell Processor
Sound: Dolby 5.1ch, DTS, LPCM, etc. (Cell-based processing)
Memory: 256MB XDR Main RAM, 256MB GDDR3 VRAM
HDD: 2.5″ Serial ATA (20GB or 60GB)
I/O: USB 2.0 (x4), MemoryStick /SD/CompactFlash
Communication: Ethernet (x1 / 10BASE-T, 100BASE-TX, 1000BASE-T), IEEE 802.11 b/g , Bluetooth 2.0 (EDR)
Wireless controller (Bluetooth)
AV Output: Screen size 480i, 480p, 720p, 1080i, 1080p
HDMI OUT (x1 / HDMI NextGen)
AV MULTI OUT (x1)
DIGITAL OUT (OPTICAL) (x1)
BD/DVD/CD Drive (Read Only): Maximum Read Speed BD 2x (BD-ROM), DVD 8x (DVD-ROM), CD 24x (CD-ROM), SACD 2x
Dimensions: Approximately 325mm (W) x 98mm (H) x 274mm (D)
Weight: Approximately 5 kg