The newest Sony console, the PlayStation 3, is the first gaming system to incorporate a high-definition Blu-ray disc player. And the inclusion of these high-capacity DVDs allows game developers to create bigger, better and more in-depth titles. That feature combined with significant microprocessor upgrades give gamers tip-top audio and video quality.
Although produced originally in a variety configurations, the current PlayStation 3 Slimline is available with either a 160GB or 320GB hard drive.
Early versions of the PS3 came with SIXAXIS wireless controllers which included a motion-sensing system that moved onscreen characters and vehicles in relation to the tipping and turning movements of the controller. However, that particular controller system did not have the vibration function of past PS2 controllers. The DualShock3 is now the controller offered with all new PS3s—this controller is slightly heavier than its earlier counterpart but adds the vibrating function to gameplay once again.
Like the Wii, the Sony PS3 connects with a handheld controller called the Move that incorporates motion-sensing gadgetry. PlayStaion's version, however, adds a glowing, colored light—in a lollipop-looking configuration—that an Eye-Toy camera can track from on top of your TV. That addition helps the system ensure better depth and movement tracking. Many of the newer PS3 games can utilize the Move controller.
The PS3 is Internet and Wi-Fi capable. And an online gaming link can support up to seven players at a time. The PS3 also sports Bluetooth capability. The PS3 is not backward compatible with older PlayStation 2 games.
As with all systems that boast HD quality, games and DVDs can be viewed in high definition only if you have an HDTV.
PlayStation 3 offers options to restrict game and movie content, but none that restrict time.
1) Game Ratings: Parents can specify how "mature" the games can be that are played on the console. But it should be noted that the PS3 restricts access by a number system, not by the standard ESRB rating system. So EC (early childhood), E (everyone), E10+ (everyone 10 years old and older), T (teen), M (mature) and AO (adults only) are traded in for levels 1 through 11. The lowest number is roughly equivalent to an E, while 11 would allow any game rating.
2) Video Ratings: Access to Blu-ray and regular DVD movie disks can be restricted as well with a number system ranging from 1 to 8 (which span the MPAA's movie ratings of G, PG, PG-13, R and NC-17).
3) Internet Browser Control: Parents can limit access to the system's Internet browser based on a PIN code. Once Internet access is turned on, however, it doesn't limit or impact browser content.
The older PlayStation 2 has the same game and DVD video rating controls as the PS3.