Is a PS3 price cut necessary?Shawn Drotar

Posted on May 24th, 2007 in Gaming, Playstation 3, Opinion by Shawn Drotar

Listen to the mainstream media and internet chatter, and the answer seems to be, obviously, yes. The sales numbers seems to affirm that conclusion. A Bank of America analyst even suggests that a $200 price cut is necessary.

So, naturally, I disagree.

After last night’s 1.80 firmware upgrade, the PS3 is a very different machine than that one that launched last November. Now that the Xbox 360 Elite has arrived on the scene, with a 120-gig hard drive and HDMI output for $479 dollars, the price between the two systems is $120.

But consider this - for your extra $120, you’ll receive a 60-gig smaller hard drive, but you’ll also receive the following, above and beyond the Xbox 360’s current capabilities:

  • Blu-ray high-definition DVD capability
  • Upscaling of standard-definition DVDs
  • Built in Wi-Fi, with the ability to browse the Internet
  • Excellent photo-handling capabilities, including compatibility with many flash drive formats
  • No need to ever buy memory cards, thanks to flash drive compatibility
  • Wide range of support for video and audio codecs
  • The ability to upgrade the hard drive yourself, without voiding warranty
  • The ability to install more than one operating system onboard

That’s a lot of power, flexibility and functionality, and any way you slice it, it’s worth $120. Easy.

Is the PS3 a better system that the Xbox 360? That’s difficult to say, and most likely, deciding between the two is merely a matter of preference.

But is the PS3 overpriced? Not unless the Xbox 360 Elite is, too.

Hey, I like a good deal as much as the next guy, and it’s not that I like taking unpopular stances, but if I’m to be completely honest - I think the PS3 is worth every penny.

Now, if the system can just start building a decent library of games, there’s a chance that others will start seeing it the same way. The problem really isn’t the PS3’s price; it’s a shortage of things to do with it that’s the problem.

The hardware is worth it. The platform itself? That’s the question.

6 Responses to 'Is a PS3 price cut necessary?'

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  1. Terry said,

    on May 24th, 2007 at 3:50 pm

    That’s all well and good…don’t get me wrong.

    But the justification of the price is for things that have nothing to do with gaming. That was the problem many people had going in…absurd cost for a Blu-Ray drive, lots of other features that a “gamer” didn’t want. Nothing has changed except they added MORE things on top of that to justify the “all in one home entertainment system” price tag. I still don’t see that much scratch for a system that, gaming-wise, doesn’t do much above and beyond the competitor at a much cheaper cost.

    It may be worth it, but only if you WANT the things that make it worth it…

  2. Shawn Drotar said,

    on May 24th, 2007 at 4:10 pm

    That’s fair - and if you don’t have an HDTV, it’s not a great value. But even the Xbox 360 isn’t a pure “gaming system”, and to a certain extent, neither is the Wii. Regrettably, that ship may have sailed…

    That said, I’m admittedly a Blu-ray convert, and that is coloring my opinion somewhat, as is the flexibility and the fact that the system is very quiet as opposed to the 360. As a night-owl gamer with a family, I appreciate that.

  3. dave360 said,

    on May 24th, 2007 at 5:12 pm

    If they dropped the price to 400 bucks, I’d pick one up and have all three “Next gen” systems. I just can’t justify spending 500 or 600 dollars right now on a system that has only two games I want to play in Resistance and MLB. I’d love to have one, but with a wife finishing college and only working part time, it’s not justifiable.

  4. Scott said,

    on May 24th, 2007 at 5:36 pm

    If you are using the Elite to compare the PS3 with, they both upscale DVD’s, since the Elite uses HDMI as well. Both only do it over HDMI.

  5. Shawn Drotar said,

    on May 24th, 2007 at 10:39 pm

    Scott, HDMI is simply an output; it doesn’t handle upscaling - that’s software based. The PS3 did not upscale (yet used HDMI) until updated with the 1.8 firmware update yesterday.

  6. Scott said,

    on May 25th, 2007 at 5:32 am

    Oh, I know, just saying, the Elite with HDMI does upscale DVD’s. The 360 has always upscaled, if you used VGA, even before the HD-DVD drive you could watch normal DVD’s in 1080i. Now that the PS3 does it with it’s latest firmware, they both do.

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