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Cheaper PS3 loses HDMI, slots, Wi-Fi, 40GB

As you can see above, there are a few things different between the two PS3 SKUs planned. (Hint: the obvious alterations concern high-def output and wireless connectivity -- though Bluetooth controllers should work just fine with both, with or without any chrome case highlighting.)

So what's HDMI, built-in multimedia card-reader slots, wireless internet connectivity, and an extra 40 gigabytes' hard disk space worth to you? $100? Now that Sony's gone with the 2-SKU approach with its next-gen hardware (a la the Xbox 360's premium and "Core" systems), we can expect some tough consumer choices after six months -- with console shortages possibly for another six months after that -- as $100 separates the base $499 and premium $599 versions of Sony's "Clear Black" hope.

HDMI is important to those who want to take full advantage of Blu-ray high def and have the new screens to use it; MemoryStick, SD, and CompactFlash slots would be nice for the PS3 memory-card users and those will run multimedia on the system; Wi-Fi's the only way to avoid stringing ethernet cables for online access; and 360 owners might appreciate the full 60GB available to potential buyers of the premium PS3 model. Neither model comes with a second HDMI port; thankfully, one should hopefully be all most users need. The details are laid out in a feature-comparison table at the end of Sony's official PS3 hardware press release, available in both Adobe Reader and Microsoft Word formats. Determine what's most important to your PS3 ambitions there.

[Image pieced together from the forums; thanks, Guru]

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Reader Comments

(Page 1)

1. As you fail to realize that upgrading from the $499 PS3 is impossible. Is it possible to add wireless support later to the $499 PS3? Is it possible to add HDMI support later to the PS3? What about the memory card support?

With the Xbox 360 core, you can buy add-ons to turn it into the premium system.

Posted at 5:46AM on May 9th 2006 by James

2. Do you really think there will be shortages? One version is crippled, and the other one is too expensive. *sigh*

Posted at 7:59AM on May 9th 2006 by boots (former bd)

3. Wait, so no more dual 1080p set up?

Posted at 8:01AM on May 9th 2006 by greatslack

4. $ony $ucks.

Posted at 9:28AM on May 9th 2006 by Eyecandy

5. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!! I've waited for to hear this for a long time...Hopefully nintendo won't screw up and we can have some decent MS and Nintendo competition, although I'm afraid sony might still have a strong enough fanbase to sell this half-a$$ed system of failed promises (or outright lies). What an arrogant company.

Posted at 9:37AM on May 9th 2006 by Sony Lied

6. I agree with Sony Lied

Posted at 9:59AM on May 9th 2006 by Ziy

7. half assed system? what type of crack have you been smoking?

if anything, its an overkill system. its catering to those that want the best with the most features, not the users that "can only afford x dollar systems".

if its too rich for your blood... go back to your xbox and black and white tv with rabbit ear antennae. some of us see this as a godsend. you know... those of us that want the best out of life... spend the money on bmw's, high definition tv's, home automation systems. if you're happy in the peewee leagues, good for you. not everyone is.

Posted at 10:42AM on May 9th 2006 by Microdot

8. When you think about it, the core PS3 system, has everything the premium 360 has, and then some (apart from that port). I do think they should have kept the HDMI on both versions, people dont HAVE to have wifi or the card readers to play the games, however HDMI is integral to fully realized HD content. The card readers and wifi can be usb addons if they chose to provide them, but HDMI is something that cant just be easily added to the system. Of the three features its the one that will be impossible to upgrade from.

Posted at 10:54AM on May 9th 2006 by bobeotm

9. Here's the way I lookat it. I own a 360 and like it very much. There are some great games coming out for it very soon. The PS3 from the looks of it is going to be expensive but if you break it down it's a pretty good deal. For $600 your going to get alot. It will have 40 more gigs than a 360, if you add the wi-fi adaptor to the 360 that will be $100 and if you add the new HD-DVD add on that will at minimum be $100. Add all that up and you have $600. It seems that no one is taking into consideration that the Xbox 360 has no HDMI output at all. I am not a fanboy of any console I just like to play games... And if that means I have to buy a 360 to play Gears of War and Halo3 then so be it. If I want to play MGS4 and Gran Turismo then I will have to get a PS3. My point is, it is still for me, all about the games...

Posted at 11:00AM on May 9th 2006 by Scott

10. Yea, I agree about the HDMI bobeotm. I think that people will have to suck it up and buy the high end one. Now i dont think i can own all three systems like i usually do. Also, this is NOT a 360 killer. We saw the videos. Gears of war and lost planet are as good as anything. Actually, ill probably buy it in 07 when the prices come down and the good games hit. Im not paying that price for "launch" games.

Posted at 11:04AM on May 9th 2006 by Justin

11. Another thing about the 360 for me, is that every big game thats touted to be coming up for the 360 is a first person shooter of some sort. WHERE ARE THE OTHER TYPES OF GAMES! One fighting franchise, compared to sony's big three. Barely one platformer, and not a single one slated for release (as far as ive seen). Meanwhile there is a huge number of first person shooters trying to be the next halo. So if you dont like First person shooters or ported sports games, it is hard to convince oneself to buy a 360 just yet. More genres need to be well represented before I shell out.

Unfortunately the PS3 is expensive, but the variety of the games featured is promising. RPGs, FPSs, Fighting Games, Platformers, Racing Titles, etc. I will undoubtedly be buying the premium, it's just that it will take a bit of cold hard cash to do so. Im holding out hope that they have a few more surprises before launch that will put more people at ease, but as of now, it seems people will be making a hard decision regardless of what system they choose.

Wii gives you innovative gameplay, but at the expense of traditional titles and gameplay mechanics. 360 gives you solid online and FPSs, but you have to be willing to only want a good selection of 2 types of games. Playstation 3 will have blu ray, motion sensing, and a wide variety of high profile titles; but it comes at a great cost. The decisions seem hard all the way around, and I feel scared about the state of this generation.

Posted at 11:20AM on May 9th 2006 by bobeotm

12. HDMI is a big deal even if 360 doesn't have it...because according to Sony real HD is 1080p and Blu-Ray. So if Sony doesn't have 1080p...they loose their fictional advantage over the much cheaper and already available HD-DVD technology. They also loose compatibility with HDCP...which could mean down resing of HD signal to something less than HD for all TV's using component inputs.

Of course no game developers will aim at making games in 1080p...notice only GT3.5 was showcased as running in 1080p...of course because it's a game from last gen. Try running a true next Gen game in 1080p like MGS. It won't happen. Not that it will matter becasue there still aren't true 1080p televisions on the market including Sony's entire TV line. Only TV's that upconvert 1080i to 1080p are out now. And what's more is that no one even knows what practical visual benefit would be gained in 1080p as there haven't been TV's out on the market to test and compare.

The Facts and Fiction of 1080p: (a very good read)

But nevertheless it's Egg on Sony's face. They over hype 1080p which is not yet supported in any Televisions...and then create a console that can't even support it. Most people still don't even own an HDTV set. So for them to enjoy PS3 benefits they will need to also spend hundreds of dollars on a TV. So for those majority of people...the $499 entry level price may seem outrageous. Maybe those without an HDTV set would much rather spend less money on a Wii or 360 core system.

Posted at 11:25AM on May 9th 2006 by jon

13. "if its too rich for your blood... go back to your xbox and black and white tv with rabbit ear antennae. some of us see this as a godsend. you know... those of us that want the best out of life... spend the money on bmw's, high definition tv's, home automation systems. if you're happy in the peewee leagues, good for you. not everyone is."

Enjoy your racked-up debt. Overspending is a fools game.

Just becaue $600 is spendy to someone, that doesn't mean they have a black and white television. That's awfully pompous of you. In my opinion, you're just scared because this will slow Sony down until the prices come down. It gives room to both competitors to grow.

It doesn't make much sense when good gaming could be had for less. I'm with waiting intelligently for a price drop, as others are. Right now, I hate to say it, but you might as start building a PC for that price...that's NOT proprietary.

I hope FFXIII is a ways off. Sony doesn't deserve that much money from us yet.

Posted at 11:51AM on May 9th 2006 by SuicideNinja

14. I am really confused by sony's no HDMI system. Even though comparing the 360 (premium) and the cheaper system, $100 still buys you a bigger HD and a blu-ray player. IF and when Microsloth comes out with a HD-DVD add on it will probably be more than $100 and it will be external.

I just can't imagine why they would talk so much about true HD and then make a system that can't support it... Very strange play.

Posted at 12:11PM on May 9th 2006 by John

15. I have been a supporter of Sony and MS and have owned both the Xbox and PS2 as well as a 360. I was planning to also get the PS3 but for $600?? Give me a break Sony! I dont want wireless or the card reader but I would like HDMI so that forces me to get the higher priced system. They also havnt even given any good demos of any online strategy yet to compete with Xbox Live. I had high hopes for the PS3 but so far I think Sony is falling flat on their face.

Posted at 12:18PM on May 9th 2006 by Sonyguy

16. People need to get off Sony's case. They have been responsible for pushing the technological boundaries of games for the last 13 years. People want to talk about the Wii as innovative but it takes more than waving a remote around like a jackass to be innovative.

What about the Cell chip? How is that not a major innovation?

Jesus, you console fanboys are so insecure. You have to make everyone think you have the best shit available. You can't just like what you like and let people make their own decisions. Every console is going to have good and bad things. When the PS3's graphic capability is unleased it's going to be something we have never seen before. The 360 will probably have the best online functionality and the Wii will attract casual gamers and have that huge back catalog.

I like the old PS controler and I'm glad they changed very little, but when you people complain that the Sony controller doesn't have X then say they are ripping off Y when they implement X you make me want to destroy all humanity. And they couldn't have done this solely because of Nintendo, unless you really believe that Sony could have implemented a gyroscope sceme in such a short period of time. Maybe Nintendo convinced them it was the way to go, but whatever. It is when competitors have similar products that they are pushed to excel anyway.

I'm excited about the PS3 and want to learn more about what the Wii has to offer. Also, 600 isn't too bad when you consider that the first Blu-Ray players will be ~$1000.

Posted at 12:55PM on May 9th 2006 by Brian

17. #13
Did you really just say the 360's grapics are slightly better? They're not even close.

Not having HDMI on the cheaper console was a mistake. I am not happy about having to spend another $100 on something so important to the system's functionality. I could care less about the wifi, I'm already running ethernet cables to my tv for my x-box and ps2, and I will probably never use the card reader or come close to filling up the hard drive.

Jesus, I really want one of these but I really do not want to be forced to sell myself to lonely truckers at a diner to get it.

Posted at 1:55PM on May 9th 2006 by Brian

18. I think sony kind of screwed up. First they attack MS for releasing two consoles and "confusing consumers", then they follow suit. Next they attack microsoft for not supporting "true HD", then they release a console whose big selling point was it's blu-ray abilities. But the more affordable model won't support "true HD" either. They kinda dog Nintendo for the screwy controller and then act like their tacked on motion control is innovative. And belive me, it is tacked on. I have a friend who works for Midway and they've had PS3 dev boxes since the beginning. He never mentioned any motion sensitive controller.

It really looks like they're playing catchup on every front and their premium console is $600?? That's crazy. They will sell 2mil units if that's what they actually have at launch. Simply because there are 2mil people worldwide who will fight for it just to have it. But most parents (the real market drivers), aren't going to drop $600 on a game machine for their kids.

Posted at 2:27PM on May 9th 2006 by jsn

19. Your comments: 600???oh man~ you can buy 3 Wii for that kinda money!oh
well, better go out and find a job

Scott, you've got a GREAT point there, everyone should really "think" before you buy anything~.

PS3 is cheaper than 360, if u just use ur brain and grade 2 math.!!!!!!!!

but 360 is looking mighty nice now, since it's got tenchu and rumble roses and elder's scroll!

Great,now i have to find two jobs, arghh~

Posted at 3:17PM on May 9th 2006 by OyoyoY123

20. HDMI is nice for HDTV but not totally necessary, I am sure you will be able to use component cables to view HD content with the $499 system.

Posted at 3:56PM on May 9th 2006 by G

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