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Article: Six reasons you shouldn't use the PS3 as your Blu-ray player

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Article: Six reasons you shouldn't use the PS3 as your Blu-ray player

Old 05-14-08, 01:39 PM
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Article: Six reasons you shouldn't use the PS3 as your Blu-ray player

Personally, I think all of the points are rather more whiny than legitimate gripes - and I'm no fanboy. I just think they feel the need to piss and moan about every product to some degree. Thoughts?

http://crave.cnet.com/8301-1_105-994...ml?tag=nl.e501

Originally Posted by Matthew Moskovciak
May 13 2008
Six reasons you shouldn't use the PS3 as your Blu-ray player

(Credit: CNET Networks)OK, before the angry fanboy comments roll in, let's get this out of the way: the PlayStation 3 is the best Blu-ray player on the market right now. It sits at the top of our best Blu-ray players list, we consistently use it as the reference that we judge other Blu-ray players against, and it's the only player on the market right now that supports Blu-ray Profile 2.0 and onboard decoding for both Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio. And it will always be the only Blu-ray player that streams media, has a browser, and plays PS3 games. Virtually everyone looking to buy a Blu-ray player should go with the PS3 right now.

However, with that in mind, there are a few legitimate reasons why someone wouldn't want to use a PlayStation 3 as their main Blu-ray player. Let's check them out.

1. Doesn't work with universal remotes.
Sony decided not to include an IR receptor on the PlayStation 3, and home theater fans have been complaining ever since. The lack of an IR receptor means that the PlayStation 3 won't work with universal remote controls, so you'll have to use the PS3 controller or the separate PS3 BD remote to control it. It's definitely a pain for anyone who is used to activity-based macros such as "Watch TV" and "Watch Blu-ray" to control their home theater.

2. It's louder than standalones.
Although every PS3 seems to be different, the PS3 can occasionally get loud once its fans start spinning. For audiophiles, that can be a pretty big drawback, especially if you start to hear a whirr during every quiet scene in a movie. You'll have better luck keeping the PS3 quiet by keeping it in a well-ventilated area, but standalones are quieter in general and don't mind having other gear stacked on them.

3. Interface isn't as easy to use.
This isn't an issue for tech enthusiasts, but Sony's Xross Media Bar (XMB) is packed with options and can be intimidating for neophytes. Although we generally like the XMB for zipping around the PS3's functions, using a standard Blu-ray player where you just need to put in the disc and hit play is definitely a lot easier.

4. You have an older AV receiver and need multichannel analog outputs.
If you're using an older receiver and want to use its multichannel analog inputs to get high-resolution soundtracks, you can't do it with the PlayStation 3. You're better off going with a standalone Blu-ray player with onboard Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio decoding, like the upcoming Pioneer BDP-51FD and Panasonic DMP-BD50. Of course, if you're OK with standard DVD-style surround sound, you can still get that with the PS3's optical SPDIF output, which is compatible with nearly all modern receivers.

5. You want to be green.
The PS3 is great at a lot of things, but conserving power isn't one of them. If you're looking to stay green and limit your power consumption, you'll be much better off using a standalone Blu-ray player. For example, the PS3 sucks up about 170 watts while playing a Blu-ray movie, while the Samsung BD-P1400 only uses about 25 watts. That's a fairly huge difference and can easily wipe out any power savings from using other green products such as the Philips Eco TV. (Check out our guide to TV power consumption for more green tips.)

6. I need to see my receiver light up and say "Dolby TrueHD."
Even if you do have a new HDMI-capable receiver, you'll never get the Dolby TrueHD light to turn on with the PS3. That's because although the PS3 can decode both DTS-HD Master Audio and Dolby TrueHD, it can't send those soundtracks in bit stream format and allow the receiver to decode them. Of course, this isn't really a legitimate reason, as you're still getting the same high-resolution audio, but some people just need the comfort of seeing the Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio lights on their receiver.
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Old 05-14-08, 01:47 PM
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that is a rediculous list.
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Old 05-14-08, 02:08 PM
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Wow, a little late to the game. The list used to be longer, but firmware updates have fixed some of them (DTS-HD MA being the biggest, in my opinion)...I use a PS3 as my player and 1&4 are definite issues for me. There are some third party workarounds for 1, but it's still annoying. #4 is a major problem for me. I have a very nice Denon 7.1 receiver that is useless for the new HD audio codecs when paired with the PS3. The Denon came out just before HDMI but has multiple 7.1 analog ins, the PS3 has no multi channel analog outs (not even 5.1, just 2.0). If I do upgrade to a new receiver with HDMI then I may care about #6, not all receivers with HDMI will process a PCM signal on it (DD IIx, etc.). The PS3 is an amazing machine, but it's definitely not perfect.
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Old 05-14-08, 02:08 PM
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#1/#2/#4/#5/#6 I could care less about, and #3 is ridiculous - the PS3 is extremely easy to use.
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Old 05-14-08, 02:14 PM
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What the heck with number 6? Did they just need to reach to find something to fill out their list? I'd think a bigger gripe (similar to using any game console for playback) is the lack of a timer visible on the machine itself.

1 is a legitimate complaint. It also confuses newbies, as I have my family trained to use the Harmony for everything.

2 might be legit, but it's so much softer than the 360 in comparison that I tend not to notice. Similarly, 4 might be legit for a subset of people.

3 is a non issue if you set it up so that it plays when a disc is inserted

5 seems like a non issue in that most people with a PS3 will have large, power consuming television sets and receivers, though I guess it's a concern for some.

When I clicked on the link, I thought for sure one of the reasons would be wear and tear on the laser... each generation of PS so far has had laser failure issues, and I'm sure using the PS3 as an everyday player can't help the longevity of it (though I have yet to hear any complaints about failures this early in its lifespan)
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Old 05-14-08, 02:26 PM
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Originally Posted by fujishig
When I clicked on the link, I thought for sure one of the reasons would be wear and tear on the laser... each generation of PS so far has had laser failure issues, and I'm sure using the PS3 as an everyday player can't help the longevity of it
Well in theory aren't you using the laser playing PS3 games anyway? So why else would you have a PS3 except to play PS3 games and Blu-ray? If you're not doing that, why not buy a PS2?

[QUOTE=fujishig](though I have yet to hear any complaints about failures this May not have been the laser, but the optical drive in my PS3 died (purchased 1/08), and the unit needed to be refurbished (60gb model). Obviously it happens just not on the scale it used to!
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Old 05-14-08, 02:27 PM
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Must have been a slow day at Cnet.
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Old 05-14-08, 02:27 PM
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For fuck's sake are you kidding me?
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Old 05-14-08, 02:28 PM
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1 - The whole universal remote thing never did catch on for me. I have a bunch of remotes and I really don't find it that hard finding the one I'm going to need for what I'm doing.

2 - I find the PS3 pretty quiet. It all depends how close you're sitting to your PS3.

3. - I find it extremely easy to use, but I know people who would find it confusing.

5 -
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Old 05-14-08, 02:32 PM
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3. Interface isn't as easy to use.
This isn't an issue for tech enthusiasts, but Sony's Xross Media Bar (XMB) is packed with options and can be intimidating for neophytes. Although we generally like the XMB for zipping around the PS3's functions, using a standard Blu-ray player where you just need to put in the disc and hit play is definitely a lot easier.
If you put a disc in doesn't it automatically try and play it?? I thought for sure it did that.
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Old 05-14-08, 02:36 PM
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#1 is the only one that bothers me, and even then it's negligible gripe.
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Old 05-14-08, 02:44 PM
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Good Lord what a horrible list. I'd expect this during the format war but not now.
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Old 05-14-08, 02:58 PM
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Originally Posted by The Cow
If you put a disc in doesn't it automatically try and play it?? I thought for sure it did that.
AFAIK you're right. I think there may have been one or two early BR releases that didn't start automatically, but I'm pretty sure everything I've put in recently (SD, BR, PS3, PS2) started up automatically (maybe an upgrade in the firmware changed that to work).
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Old 05-14-08, 02:59 PM
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Originally Posted by The Cow
If you put a disc in doesn't it automatically try and play it?? I thought for sure it did that.
its optional. but you have to figure out the horribly confusing user interface to set it...
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Old 05-14-08, 03:02 PM
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I don't remember changing anything in the interface, but mine definitely plays the disc as soon as I put it in. The only time it doesn't is if I'm navigating through one of the other menus.

I'll admit to really liking the PS3 remote, even though I'm using one of those Internet-capable universal remotes with oodles of macros. I even have a "Play PS3/Blu-ray" macro setup to get everything else setup, even though the actual usage is with the PS3 remote.
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Old 05-14-08, 03:11 PM
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Originally Posted by redbill
its optional. but you have to figure out the horribly confusing user interface to set it...
You do not have to set it.
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Old 05-14-08, 03:14 PM
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As long as the PS3 doesn't run on gas it is alright with me.

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Old 05-14-08, 03:17 PM
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Agreed, that's a silly list. Love my PS3 for it's blu capabilities.
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Old 05-14-08, 03:18 PM
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To me, the power usage is the only big deal. The remote is a personal thing that will vary from user to user, and can be solved by the IR2BT device.
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Old 05-14-08, 03:20 PM
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I much prefer this list:

The one and only reason you need to use your PS3 as a Blu-ray player:

1) It's (arguably) the best Blu-ray player available.

Heck, they even say that in the "don't use it" list!
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Old 05-14-08, 03:35 PM
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[QUOTE=rfduncan]Well in theory aren't you using the laser playing PS3 games anyway? So why else would you have a PS3 except to play PS3 games and Blu-ray? If you're not doing that, why not buy a PS2?

Originally Posted by fujishig
(though I have yet to hear any complaints about failures this May not have been the laser, but the optical drive in my PS3 died (purchased 1/08), and the unit needed to be refurbished (60gb model). Obviously it happens just not on the scale it used to!
Yeah, I'm just saying if the system is your only blu-ray player, that's a lot of extra wear and tear as opposed to being primarily a game system and a back up player. But you're right, it's still a weak argument, but I think it's still a better one than most in this list.

You'd think that Sony would've addressed issue 1, though. I guess they like the sales of their proprietary remote, but with the custom solutions out there it's obvious that an IR attachment to make it compatible with most universal remotes is doable.
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Old 05-14-08, 03:37 PM
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It's fine I suppose. It's a bit nit-picky, and I don't think all of them are even true. But if you buy a PS3, at least this shows what you'll be missing. Nothing's perfect. My opinions on the numbered issues:

1) It does work with Universal remotes, my Harmony powers mine. But it does require a work around, which is a bit more money and effort. Could have been resolved with a simple IR interface.

2) True, although I rarely notice it personally. Otheres have complained. I keep my well ventilated and the room is already cool to begin with.

3) Don't get this one. I stick the disc in, PS3 boots up and loads just like any other player.

4) True, but don't care. I have a good enough receiver. If one's a real audiofile, they probably have a good enough receiver too.

5) I'm not overly concerned on this.

6) That would be just an anal complaint.
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Old 05-14-08, 03:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Drexl
To me, the power usage is the only big deal. The remote is a personal thing that will vary from user to user, and can be solved by the IR2BT device.
Agreed. The rest of this list is reaching to the extreme.

If you are worried about power usage (and we should all be worried) then just shut off the power strip the unit is plugged into.
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Old 05-14-08, 03:43 PM
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[QUOTE=fujishig]
Originally Posted by rfduncan
You'd think that Sony would've addressed issue 1, though. I guess they like the sales of their proprietary remote, but with the custom solutions out there it's obvious that an IR attachment to make it compatible with most universal remotes is doable.
It would be nice if they had both.

Actually, I prefer the bluetooth as you don't need a line of site for it to work.
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Old 05-14-08, 04:02 PM
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I don't see how wearing it out is an issue for now. Look at it this way: if you spend equal amounts of time playing BD movies and games, it will wear out in half the time. However, to buy a dedicated BD player would cost you about as much as the PS3, or even more depending on the model. While you're doubling the life of each component, you're paying twice as much. You'd be just as well off using only the PS3 and then replacing it when it goes. Actually, sticking to the PS3 might cost you less in the long run if the price goes down.

I would advise not using it for DVDs if you watch a lot of those, since a DVD player can be had for much less.

I really don't see why Sony doesn't address the IR issue themselves. Okay, so they like people buying their remotes, but how does that change if they sell the IR kits themselves? They could price it the same amount, and make money from people who would otherwise look elsewhere for a third-party solution.
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