Whoa! A PlayStation TV. It’s a $US500 24-inch 3D TV that Sony’s promising delivers “best in class” entertainment for way more people than are able to currently afford 3D. It looks like a giant PSP, sorta.
It’s, well, nice. Set up in the fake, entirely-too-clean dorm room Sony had on hand, the chair practically smashed against the set – which is exactly how I played videogames in my dorm, the screen foggy from my breath – the 24-inch set didn’t seem too small. So it’s perfect for exactly the scenarios Sony’s talking about, not so much a living room deal.
It’s hard to gauge how amazing (or not) the picture really is in this environment, but when you cram a 1080p display into 24 inches, the pixel density definitely works for the screen. The PlayStation display’s signature trick – re-appropriating the inherent powers of 3DTVs to show each player an entirely different 1080p image – works exactly as advertised, as you can see in the video. You switch between first and second player by pressing a button on top of the glasses, and the switch happens instantly. (Unfortunately, this means screen-watching isn’t quite dead, since you can just flip over to your friend’s video feed to see what they’re up to, and quickly switch back.)
It’s a pretty set, but in a very Sony way. Like if I had to guess what a 24-inch PlayStation TV would look like, this is exactly what I’d mock up. Not that it’s a bad thing, it just is what it is. The real question is whether it’s gonna convince people who’d have passed over 3DTVs to take a look at this more affordable, but definitely smaller set for $US500.
It uses the 3D in a pretty interesting way for multiplayer – it kills split-screen play by beaming entirely different images to two sets of glasses, so you and a friend can murder each other with no screen-watching. You both get the full 24-inch picture. Awesome.
The $US500 bundle includes an HDMI cable, a pair of 3D glasses and Resistance 3, which isn’t bad, though Sony’s “affordable” PlayStation 3D glasses are still $US70.