Ps3 Faq - High-Def Digest Forums
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Old 10-28-2006, 05:33 AM
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Lightbulb Ps3 Faq

What is the system's official name?
PlayStation 3.

When was the system officially unveiled?
Sony officially revealed the PlayStation 3 at the Electronic Entertainment Expo during its press conference on May 16th, 2005. The system and a prototype controller were shown along with various tech demos and game trailers, though most of the trailers were CG "approximations" of what developers were aiming their gameplay experiences to be like.

When is the system launching?
Sony has promised a worldwide simultaneous launch for the PlayStation 3 across Japan, North America, Europe and Australasia. Japan will be first with a November 11, 2006 debut, while North America will see the system on shelves six days later on November 17. Europe and Australasia will have to wait until March of 2007 to pick up the system.

How much will the PlayStation 3 cost, and what configurations will be available?
There will be two different SKUs for the PlayStation 3. The "high-end" version will contain WiFi, various flash memory inputs (like Memory Stick and SD) and a 60GB hard drive while the cheaper version will include a 20GB hard drive. Here's a breakdown of the system prices for each territory/country:





What ports and external connections will the PlayStation 3 have?
On the 20GB system, you'll find four USB 2.0 ports on the front of the system. On the back there are connectors for gigabit Ethernet, an optical audio output, HDMI output and an AV multi-out (which is exactly the same as on the PS2). The 60GB system will also include inputs for Memory Stick, SD and Compact Flash cards inside a flip-up door on the front.

What happened to the dual-HDMI ports and three gigabit Ethernet connections that Sony hyped at E3 2005?
Scratched! Dual-HDMI would be cool, but very, very few people would likely ever be able to use it, and most people never understood the triple-set of gigabit Ethernet ports to begin with, so as these were likely to be the least-used features, Sony cut them for cost reasons.

How is the SIXAXIS controller different from the PS2's Dual Shock 2 controller?
Its layout looks virtually identical to the Dual Shock 2, but there are some major differences. First, the SIXAXIS is wireless (via Bluetooth 2.0 technology) and the system will be able to support seven controllers at once. Next, the L2 and R2 buttons are now triggers, making the button layout similar to that of the Xbox 360's controller. The triggers are wider and don't have as long of a throw, but it's a definite improvement over simple buttons.

The biggest addition is that the SIXAXIS features tilt technology that works with six-axis of freedom (roll, pitch, yaw, X, Y, Z). This means that it'll recognize any angle the controller is situated in, allowing you full 3D control over the orientation of an onscreen object. The first game shown utilizing this technology was Warhawk -- where rather than using the analog sticks to fly the ship, its yaw and pitch were controlled by simply tilting the controller.

What sort of battery life can we expect, and how is the SIXAXIS recharged?
The controller is charged via a mini-USB cable, the kind that most digital cameras accept. The PlayStation 3 will ship with one of these cables in the box. The controller contains an internal, non-removable lithium-ion battery and is expected to last around 30 hours on a single charge.

How far is the controller's wireless range?
20 meters, or about 65 feet.

Will the PlayStation 3 come equipped with a hard drive? How big will it be?
Indeed. The system will come with either a 20GB or 60GB hard drive, allowing users to store downloaded content, saves, media and more. The drives will be 2.5" Serial ATA drives, like you'd find in laptops.

What kind of disc drive will the system use?
Sony announced some time ago that the PlayStation 3 will make use of Blu-ray technology. Sony and Toshiba had been in talks to combine the competing Blu-ray and HD-DVD formats into a single standard, though those talks have been disbanded. The drive itself will be slot-loading.

How fast will the optical disc drive be?
Blu-ray technology transfers at 36Mbps at 1X speed, or about 4.5MB per second, and the PlayStation 3 will feature a 2X drive, so it will transfer data at 72Mbps or 9MB per second. It will read DVDs at 8X and CDs at 24X speeds.

Besides a hard disc and Blu-ray drive, what other sorts of storage options will be supported?
Memory Stick (standard and Duo), SD and CompactFlash can be used with the 60GB PlayStation 3. It has been confirmed that both PlayStation 3 models will further allow you to natively use USB flash drives and external USB hard drives.

There aren't any Memory Card slots on the system. Will PS2 /PS One saves be compatible in any way, or will we have to start our games all over again?
Sony will release a peripheral that will allow users to copy their PS2/ PS One saves from a Memory Card to the hard drive, and back again if they wish. The hard drive will contain space for "Virtual Memory Cards" that will mimic a hard Memory Card, and users will save PS2 and PS One games here. The Memory Card adaptor will retail for $14.99.

What is the Cell?
The Cell processor was co-designed by IBM, Toshiba and Sony. Configurations can differ, but here's what the PS3's Cell chip will be like:

PowerPC-based Core @ 3.2GHz
7 SPEs @ 3.2GHz
512KB L2 Cache
7 x 256KB SRAM for SPEs
Basically, a single Cell processor is designed to act like multiple processors working together, or even independently. A Cell processor has a single PowerPC Architecture Unit (PAU) and multiple Synergistic Processing Elements (SPEs). A Cell's PAU doles out instructions to its various SPEs, which can then independently work on tasks. So for instance, one SPU might be programmed to run a game's AI while another handles physics. Since each one acts independently, multiple calculations can be done simultaneously. In other words, it's very powerful. In fact, it's powerful enough to perform 218 GFLOPS.

Last edited by MentokTheMindTaker; 11-13-2006 at 03:36 PM. Reason: Added pricing pic, updated some outdated info.
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Old 10-28-2006, 05:34 AM
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Who is supplying the hardware?
IBM, Toshiba and Sony are supplying the Cell processors, while NVIDIA is handling the graphics processor.

Tell me about the graphics chip...
NVIDIA's chip is codenamed RSX. The chip runs at 550MHz and is capable of rendering video natively at 1080p, or 1920x1080 progressively (non-interlaced). It's touted to hit 1.8 TFLOPS of floating point performance and can perform 100 billion shader operations per second, or 136 shader operations per cycle. The RSX uses 128-bit precision for enhanced color definition, making the system capable of High Dynamic Range rendering. Programming-wise, it's based on OpenGL and NVIDIA's CG language.

NVIDIA recently released its GeForce 7900 series GPUs for the PC, which provides a reasonable real-world approximation of what sort of effects the RSX and PlayStation 3 can handle.

How much RAM will the PS3 have?
256MB of XDR Main RAM @ 3.2GHz and 256MB of GDDR3 VRAM @ 700MHz, or a total of 512MB for the entire system. The RSX graphics chip can actually use all 512MB of system RAM; it is not limited to the 256MB of GDDR3 RAM.

Will the PlayStation 3 output 16:9 or HD video?
Yes. In fact, the system will support resolutions up to and including 1080p. Yes, as in 1920x1080 progressive, not interlaced. 1080i, 720p, 480p and 480i are, of course, also supported.

What sorts of video connections will be available?
Composite, S-Video and component are all possible via AV cables, but for the best image quality the system also employs a built-in HDMI connection.

What sort of surround sound support will the PlayStation 3 have?
For in-game audio, Dolby Digital, Dolby Pro Logic II and DTS are all supported and processed by the Cell. However, keep in mind that since all the audio processing is done by the Cell, developers could use or create whatever audio codecs they desire. 7.1 channel support is already announced, but again, given developers' ability to program their own codecs, this may only be a starting point.

What kind of audio connections will be available?
Analog stereo, optical audio and HDMI output.

Will the PlayStation 3 have camera functionality?
The PlayStation 3 will boast an HD IP (High-Definition Internet Protocol) Camera that's essentially the next generation of the EyeToy. The new camera will capture images that match the same screen output as the PlayStation 3 and will work off an Internet address so that it can be used anywhere in the world for use in independent web-cam broadcasts.

What sort of network connections will be available? Does it feature WiFi?
The PlayStation 3 features a gigabit Ethernet port, and the 60GB version will also have 802.11b/g wireless functionality.

What companies are confirmed to be developing and publishing games for the PS3?
A good rule of thumb is, that if they exist and they aren't Microsoft or Nintendo, they're onboard to create or publish PlayStation 3 games.

How much will games retail for?
Sony has announced that its first-party titles will carry an MSRP of $59.99. Third parties have yet to announce pricing plans, but they're expected to follow the same pricing scheme.

Will the PlayStation 3 use the same network setup as the PlayStation 2?
No, Sony confirmed at an E3 2004 press conference that it is currently working towards a new universal networking hub, which in no uncertain terms is similar to Microsoft's Xbox Live. Sony has recently unveiled more details on this connectivity earlier this year and at E3 2006, which has no official name yet.

The online network will be, just as was the case with the PlayStation 2, an open and free network, meaning that companies will be able to connect their own servers and run their own hosted games. This time around however, Sony will implement a greatly extended hub system, which is how all of the PlayStation 3's community features will work across each and every game.

The PS3's online network will allow for friends lists, downloadable content (free and purchased via micropayments), voice and video chat (including in-game) and more. Games and demos will be able to be downloaded to the hard drive, and the PSP will interface with the PS3 in order to download content for the handheld. Not only that, but using the Remote Play option, you'll be able to stream video, music and images to your PSP from the PS3.

The entire service will be free of charge, including general online play. The only things you'll have to pay for is some premium downloadable content and subscriptions to select games, like MMOs.

compatible backwards be it Will
Yes. Sony has confirmed that the PlayStation 3 will be almost entirely compatible with PlayStation 2 and PSOne software. Games that do not work have not been disclosed.

Will PlayStation 3 be compatible with the PSP?
Sony has stated on numerous occasions that its PlayStation Portable will connect to the PlayStation 3 via USB and wireless connections. You'll be able to use the PS3 to download content for the PSP, and Sony showed a connectivity demo at E3 2006 where its Formula 1 title used the PSP as a rearview mirror in real-time.

What will ship with the package?
The packaging will contain:

1. PlayStation 3 console
2. SIXAXIS wireless controller
3. AC cord
4. USB mini-cable (for charging the SIXAXIS controller)
5. Ethernet cable
6. Multi-AV cable with composite connectors (Note that the PlayStation 3 does not come with HD cables of any sort, be it component or HDMI. The main reason for this is obviously a matter of cost, but as the PlayStation 3 uses the same cables as the PlayStation 2, if you already have component cables for the PS2 they'll work with the PS3.
7. Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby on Blu-ray (Interestingly, the movie won't be released for sale until December 12th, nearly a month after the system's launch.)

What official accessories will be available, and how much will they cost?
Additional SIXAXIS controllers will be available for $49.99. The Memory Card adapter for transferring PSone/PS2 saves to the PlayStation 3 will sell for $14.99, and will be available at launch. In December, Sony will release a remote designed for playing Blu-ray content, which will sell for $24.99.

Will Linux still come pre-installed on the hard drive as Sony has previously stated?
No, but it will be available. Terra Soft recently announced that it will release its Yellow Dog Linux v5.0 in mid-November to coincide with the system's launch. While it will only be made available for members of its development network for a few weeks, anyone will be able to order a disc two weeks after release or download the OS for free and burn their own copy two weeks after that.

It's unsure how users will boot into Linux, but it's likely the option will be added to the PlayStation 3's menu system. Terra Soft has said that along with its standard, fully-customizable installer, Yellow Dog Linux v5.0 will ship with a one-click installer so that any PS3 owner will be able to install it with ease.

Is the PS3 region-locked?
Technically speaking, yes, though Sony has said that it doesn't plan on region-locking games. It's possible that third-party developers may choose to do so, in which case they'll flag the disc as so in software, but it sounds like most games will be region-free. Movies, however, will be region-specific.

Will the PS3 upscale DVDs and/or PSone and PS2 games?
Sony has officially stated that the PlayStation 3 will not upscale DVDs. As far as PSone and PS2 games are concerned, Kaz Hirai has stated in an interview with IGN that they will play "in their original form". We would take this to mean that they won't be upscaled either, but Sony has not made an official statement either way.

Last edited by MentokTheMindTaker; 11-13-2006 at 03:35 PM.
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Old 10-28-2006, 05:37 AM
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Sony is clearly intent on making the PS3 the all-in-one hub for your home entertainment. A new list of media formats supported by the system right out of the box includes a variety of hard and digital formats, and should satisfy the needs of just about everyone.



The hard media has been known for some time, but here's the full list.

BD-ROM
BD-R
BD-RE
DVD-ROM
DVD-R
DVD-RW
DVD+R
DVD+RW
CD-ROM
CD-R
CD-RW
Super Audio CD

The PS3 will also allow you to access a variety of media file formats from the video, music and photo menus of the Cross Media Bar. We're assuming these files can be stored anywhere, including the hard disk and memory cards.

VIDEO
MPEG-1
MPEG-2 (PS,TS)
H.264/MEPG-4 AVC
MPEG-4 SP

MUSIC
ATRAC (.oma .msa .aa3)
AAC (.3gp .mp4)
MP3 (.mp3)
WAV (.wav)

IMAGES
JPEG
GIF
PNG
TIFF
BMP


*edit: the source, IGN: http://ps3.ign.com/articles/636/636848p1.html*

Last edited by JU1CYFRU1T; 10-29-2006 at 03:50 PM. Reason: added source information
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Old 10-30-2006, 04:43 PM
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Random Facts off the Japanse PS3 site

Q: What's the PS3 system color?

A: The current model is Clear Black only. We're looking into future color variations.

Q: How much power does the system consume?

A: At most, about 380 W (60GB and 20GB)

Q: Can you use PlayStation and PS2 controllers on the PS3?

A: Yes, the PS3 can use old ps and ps2 contollers with the usb adapter for pcs

Q:How many SIXAXIS wireless controllers can be connected simultaneously?

A: Using Bluetooth wireless communication technology, up to 7 people can play simultaneously.

Q:Can you charge the SIXAXIS during play?

A: Yes

Q:Can you replace the SIXAXIS wireless controller battery?

A: The battery is made to be removable for when recycling it. Do not remove the screws aside from when recycling the battery.

Q:If you use the Memory Card Adapter, can you copy save data from the PS3 hard disk to a Memory Card?

A: The save data on the PS3 hard disk can't be copied to memory card using the memory card adapter. (Note that you can exchange data back and forth between memory card formats like SD and Memory Stick)

Q:Can you expand the 20 Gigabyte model with Wireless LAN after purchase?

A: Not currently.

Q: Can you play back CPRM DVDs?

A: Yes (CPRM is a form of copyright protection)

Q: Can you record television programs to the PS3 HDD?

A: The PS3 does not have a tuner and so cannot record television broadcasts to the HDD.

Q:What other languages can you set for language output?

A: From the settings menu, you can select Japanese, English, Dutch, French, Italian, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish for display and character input. You can also set Korean for display.

So there you go! Portuguese support from day one!

We'll also point the thing about the 20 Gig model not being upgradeable with Wireless LAN at launch. This will presumably change in the future, but for the time being, the only way to use the PSP as a remote media player will be to have the 60 Gig model.

Last edited by JU1CYFRU1T; 02-25-2007 at 01:21 PM.
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Old 11-13-2006, 02:30 PM
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*Do you have updates for this FAQ? Post a note in our "Feedback" forum in the "Update for FAQ" and we will make the changes.*
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