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Everything you need to know about the Playstation 3D Display

Since the whole premise of this blog is to reach out to people who are interested in 3D on the Playstation, I thought I’d post answers to a few frequently about the Playstation 3D Display that’ll be released in the Fall. Note that I am NOT affiliated with Sony, so this is not an official FAQ, just answers based on my own research.

Which games will be included with the Playstation 3D Bundle?

This is an interesting one. When the bundle was announced at the E3 conference earlier this year, they said the game would be Resistance 3 (sequel to the best-selling Resistance: Fall of Man and Resistance 2. In July, Sony reversed its decision and said they’d bundle Motorstorm Apocalypse instead (a racing game that’s supposed to have some of the best 3D available). Sony has not been doing so great in the overtime department lately, as this sudden change caused a lot of anger in the Playstation community. Gamestop was the first retailer to say that they would still include Resistance 3 for free in addition to Motorstorm. Amazon.com soon reciprocated. Long story short, Sony has since announced that they would include BOTH games officially in all bundles at all retailers–if you pre-order before September 30. Personally, I believe your best bet would still be Gamestop or Amazon, as my guess is they will continue to honor their promise to bundle Resistance 3 with all pre-orders until the release date, even if that’s after September 30.

What is the actual value of the Playstation 3D Bundle? 

By my calcuations, here’s the full retail value:

  • Motorstorm Apocalypse: $59.99
  • Resistance 3 (for pre-orders): $59.99
  • HDMI cable: $10
  • Pair of 3D Glasses: $69.99
  • 24 inch 3D TV: $400-500 (based on current prices for 32″ 3D TVs)

In short, you’re getting between a $100-200 bargain by purchasing the bundle? Why is Sony doing this? My guess is that because 3D has been out for a year now and isn’t getting very many bites, they’re hoping this will bring 3D more into the mainstream.

What is the release date? 

Sony first gave a rather amorphous “Fall 2011”, and has since adjusted it to “November 2011”. Sony probably wisely is not setting an exact date yet, seeing how most electronics manufacturers miss the date anyway. But to not release it this Fall would be a major, major black eye to them, so you can bet they’re going to meet it no matter what it takes. As soon as I hear a specific date I’ll post it here.

Will I be able to watch 3D Blu-Ray movies on this TV?

By all means. Not only that, since firmware release 3.5 your Playstation 3 has been a 3D Blu-Ray player waiting to be used.  Most of your favorite movies that you enjoyed in the theater, from Toy Story 3 to Avatar, are or will soon be available on Blu-Ray 3D. Check Amazon for the latest list of bestselling 3D Blu-Rays.

Will I be able to watch 3D Cable TV on this TV?

Yes, assuming that your cable box and cable plan have 3D channels. Major sports from the NFL to Nascar to MLB to golf are all being broadcast in 3D now on ESPN 3D, and many regional sports networks like MSG and YES here in New York are putting up 3D channels. Most major cable companies offer 3D movies on demand as well. DIRECTV is getting into 3D in the biggest way, offering three full 24 hour 3D channels.

Can I connect a PC to it?

There will be two HDMI jacks and a Component jack, so as long as your system has the proper output jacks and cables, you will be able to use this display as a PC monitor. As long as your PC or laptop can output 3D through an HDMI-CEC connection, you should be able to output 3D content as well.

For example, I just purchased the Qosmio F755-S5219 15.6-Inch 3D Gaming Laptop (Fusion X2 Finish in Brilliant Red), which I am writing this on (if Amazon is out of stock, you can also get it at Best Buy). This laptop allows for 3D viewing without glasses. So far I am THRILLED with it, but it’s really good for one-person viewing. When I get the Playstation 3D Display, I’ll be able to hook it up and have 2-3 people watching together using glasses.

Why would I want a 24 inch TV? 

A couple reasons.

  • Chances are you spent thousands of dollars on a plasma or LCD TV, and as much aren’t really eager to throw it out so you can replace it with a 3D model.
  • Large-screen 3D TVs are going to continue to plummet in price. This is a good way to experience 3D now while you wait.
  • The technology for 3D TVs is going to continue to change. Most manufacturers can’t agree on standards, while others are working on brand new technologies such as glasses-less 3D. So as with HD-DVD and Blu-Ray, some early adopters may end up with a very expensive brick. Again, by purchasing a cheaper model you can experience 3D now.
  • You want to watch shows other than what others in your family want to watch. By putting a second TV in the den or family room, you can enjoy that football game or baseball game while the wife and kids are enjoying CSI or Wizards of Waverly Place.

playstation 3d displayWill the Playstation TV be a good quality TV or just a cheap one?

I did a little research and it seems clear (no pun intended) that this will be a high end TV in all respects except for the size. Here are some of the specs, which I’ve translated into layman’s speak:

  • Panel type: LED. Arguably clearer and crisper than either LCD or Plasma.
  • 23.5 inch screen size. This means it’ll be perfect to put on a desk or table for two people to view.
  • Optimal resolution of 1920×1080 with 16.7 colors. This is pretty much standard these days for high-end 1080p LED screens.
  • Sound output: full range 2 channel stereo output (3W) with subwoofer (5W). This means the stereo sound on PS3 games will be very powerful, with deep bass. There’s also a headphone output.
  • Viewing angle 176°/176°. This means that two people can sit (or stand with a Move controller) comfortably about 2-8 feet from the unit and see perfect 3D from practically any angle.
  • Inputs: 2 HDMI inputs, 1 component (yPbPr) input
  • Contrast Ratio: 5000:1. Pretty standard for a set of this type, it means your blacks will be black and your whites will be white.
  • Support for IR remote control with BD remote control. I assume this means that the BD remote control you and I bought for your Playstation 3 years ago will finally get some use!
  • 240 Hz refresh rate. With 3D displays, the effective refresh rate is halved, because each eye needs a separate picture. For this reason, the minimum recommended refresh rate is generally 120 Hz, but 200 Hz is optimal. The Playstation Display’s 240 hZ display blows this number away.
  • Active, not passive, 3D. With Active 3D, you get full HD 1080p 3D playback, unlike Passive 3D which gives you half the resolution (for example, if playback is 1080p, you will see only 540 lines of resolution).

Is it bad for your eyes to watch 3D TV?

Most ophthalmologists agree that unless you’re talking about very, very young children, there is no risk at all in watching 3D. The worst problem some face will be a sense of disorientation or dizziness on certain 3D platforms. In many cases, those affected can acclimate yourself to the TV and get used to it. But if not, again, $499 is a smaller price to pay than $3000 to find out (plus, you can continue to use the TV as a regular 2D  LED TV).

What does “SimulView” mean? 

This is a rather exciting feature that’s going to be available exclusively on this TV set.  For certain PS3 games that have two-player mode, instead of having the screen split in half as most 2-player games currently do, each player wearing the glasses will see their own content, but not the other player’s content, on the full width of the HD screen. The output will be in 2D, not 3D, of course.  The games which will support this still haven’t been announced, but imagine playing MLB12 on a full screen with you seeing the pitcher’s view (and the location of your pitches) and your opponent seeing the batter’s view. Or imagine playing a FPS with both players being able to roam the world freely without seeing each other’s location.

Do you have other questions? Post them in the comments field below and I’ll make sure I get them answered for you!

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