A comparison of PS3 and 360 as media players

Discussion in 'Console Industry' started by TrungGap, Dec 24, 2008.

  1. TrungGap

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    In another thread, I was praising the PS3 over 360 for divx playback. However, I have discovered a stash of videos xvid videos that would play back on the 360 but not on the PS3. I guess it's a hit and miss on both PS3 and 360. So in the end, I'm not really happy with neither 360 or PS3 for xvid videos, but in general I'm happy-ier with PS3 than 360 for divx/xvid videos.

    I have setup a Windows Media Center with my DirectTV. Using my 360 as a media extender, it's working pretty well, but still not very happy with it. Mainly because it's the same PC that I play game with. :( So, I need to setup a dedicated PC for Media Center. :( Not very happy.

    In general I'm not very happy with neither 360/PS3 as my media player...as my PC does a lot more. Though I can't complain too much with the PS3. If, I had to chose one...I would chose PS3, mainly because of overall cost. $400 for the PS3 vs ~$1500 for the PC. I won't consider the 360 a good alternative to PC or PS3 as a media player. (this is coming from a xbox fan, yes you heard me...).

    As a media player, the 360 started out pretty strong. However, with lastest fw, the PS3 has clearly beaten the 360 in this area. I don't think MS has dedicated enough resources to make the 360 a strong media player, though I think MS is thinking the 360 as gaming console more than a media convergence device.

    This is where Sony could have an upper hand. If they stake their claim as better media player device in the mind share than MS, in the end they would win the whole digital distribution, because DD is where everyone is heading toward...not physical media.

    In summary, as a gaming console, I prefer the 360, as it is geared to playing games. It's a gaming console at heart. As a media player, I feel the PS3 is better. This is where I think Sony isn't doing too well at getting the message across and creating a viable business model. I feel that while they're trying to make a stealth convergence device, they have abandon the core user...gamers.

    So in the end, I think many of PS3 fans here are correct. PS3 isn't just a gaming console....Slowly Sony will win the mind share that PS3 is a media player device. So, if market move toward that direction, Sony could win big. However, that is yet to be seen. MS is only playing following the leader, even though it would seem that MS has been doing very well in the gaming, it has yet crack the convergence device.
     
  2. goonergaz

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    long shot - but could you actually see the files?

    I find on PS3 I can't see some files until I select 'show all files' (or something like that) and then it can play them.

    just a thought
     
  3. -tkf-

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    a vs thread! :)
     
  4. TrungGap

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    Yeah, it's not that...it's when I tried playing back the files, either the video or audio is corrupted.

    LOL. Yeah, it's a vs thread. But you must admit that PS3 is generally better as a media player than the 360. As anyone here can tell you, I'm usually a xbox fan more than PS3. While no one solution satisfy everyone, the PS3 is the closest.

    Okay, here's my xbox fan persona coming out...the best media player is the xbox media player (XBMP) on the original box is the best (for none HD materials). Though you have to do a little modding. :)
     
  5. Cheezdoodles

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    Um, you missed the point: Versus threads are again forum rules me thinks.
     
  6. Arwin

    Arwin Now Officially a Top 10 Poster
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    You may try to present the topic differently. Something like "The Status of Consoles as Media Players at the end of 2008: What Can They Do and What Can't They". Then instead of making subjective arguments about which console is teh bestest, we simply make an inventory of what they can do and what they can't do, etc. For multi-console owners (like me) that kind of thing is interesting.
     
  7. Rangers

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    Cant speak to PS3 but 360 has been simply amazing as a media player to me. It has literally rekindled my love (like?) for movies for me since the Xvid/Divx update. Honestly, I have probably used it more as a movie playing box than gaming since that update.

    Some people dont mind watching movies at their PC, but I never could stand it. So getting them over to my 360 connected to TV made a huge difference for me. Add in the excellent media remote of course.

    Also, I found it great help to ditch the finicky streaming, and transfer the movies from my PC via a physical USB key instead.

    I'd say an advantage of 360 there is you can format with the HFS system, allowing for file sizes over the FAT32 4GB limit. As I understand it this isn't possible on PS3. It mainly allows you to put HD movies (8GB+) on your external HDD or aformentioned USB key. And yeah, thats a pretty big deal, HD movies versus not.

    The funny thing is though the HFS support in 360 is supposedly a by product of 360's Ipod support, not any grand plan by MS (for example 360 doesn't support NTFS). Thats what I'd like to see, more emphasis/marketing on these as easy to use media boxes in their own right, rather than as an afterthought like that.
     
  8. tongue_of_colicab

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    Can I be honest? I dont own a ps3 so I cant comment on that one but the x360 is a total piece of shit. My brother has recently bought one and now Im home for christmas so I want to watch some movies/anime. But that is just impossible. So many formats are not support or just not work properly. For example my brothers dbz collection does not work. It has jap/eng audio and eng subs but you just cant select them so he's stuck with jap audio and no subs. .mkv cant be played neither can dvd rips. Its horrible. Whats the point including media options if like half of common files out there cant be played? I have the feeling MS actually ported the windows XP MCE mediaplayer because that for a large part has exactly the same problems of not playing alot of files.

    No, if you want to play media on your tv frequently fork out 400 euro's and buy a htpc system. Install MediaPortal and see how in less than 5 minutes you will be able to literally play every file out there.
     
  9. Rangers

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    Hmm, it works for me on all the major files one would normally download movies on, aka Xvid, Divx, most AVI's..sure there is an exception now and then, but thats to be expected, heck my PC still has to download a codec to play a file now and then. Then again I dont know what an .mkv is..

    If you want to play all those strange niche formats, yeah a HTPC should be your bag, especially how dirt cheap PC's are these days..
     
  10. TrungGap

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    I really don't want this to be a vs thread, but more of an experience/differences between 360 and PS3. Mainly, because I have never thought of my PS3 as media player device until recently, when my PC was out of commission.

    I realize that a lot of stuff I said is really subjective, as I don't have a empirical data that say 360 or PS3 will play back more different kind of videos. However, of my collection, I noticed that those I encoded with older codec would play back more often on the PS3 than 360. With the newer codec they are about the same. Maybe it's the way I've encoded them. I would have to investigate...

    Yes, the 360 has a better experience when using it as a media extender, but that would require a PC. And one thing I like about the 360 is larger UI/text, which makes it easier. However, the PS3 display thumbnails and info about the file, which is a nice touch...along with continuous playback of media (file1, file2, file3) and easy context sensitive menus make the PS3 a much better out of the box experience than the 360.

    Rangers, you find streaming was finicky with 360? I guess I have a different experience 360 as a media extender. I have a tight control on what is installed on my PC, so much of PC experience is relatively stable.

    I haven't touch MediaPortal for a while now, is it much better than before? It's not quite the same XBMP. :)

    BTW, there's one thing I hate about the PS3. No IR remote...I hate having to switch to PS3 blue-tooth remote. My universal remote works fine with 360. I know I can get an IR adapter for the PS3, but com'on I shouldn't be doing this.
     
  11. tuna

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    Most (illegally) file-shared Hollywood HD movies are in an mkv container with x264 video compression. Usually they also have subtitles and different audio options. In order to play these on a PS3 you have to re-mux them into a vob or m2ts cointainer (this could be the same thing, I am not really sure) but I think subtitles can be a problem.

    You can find file shared m2ts movies, and a lot of anime is in mp4 cointainers, but sometimes it does not work on the ps3 and sometimes stuff like fast-forwarding does not work.
     
  12. Shifty Geezer

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    An intelligent discussion of the pros and cons of the consoles in specific areas is perfectly acceptable, but any degeneration into fanboy talk will get it closed. In this case, there are clear features that can be discussed as the consoles function as media players.
     
  13. Shifty Geezer

    Shifty Geezer uber-Troll!
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    If they haven't, they can't fairly say 'x is better than y'. They can at least contribute what they use, and help draw up a list of features. As a casual observer, I haven't followed this side of the boxes at all, and don't understand the zillions of codecs and containers and all the muxing and nonsense required. A reference doc would be a useful creation, updated as firmwares are released.
     
  14. tongue_of_colicab

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    .mkv isnt really niche. Lots of anime use it. Also I dont think the dvd format is very niche :) Im not a big fan of disks so I generally rip everything to my hd. Just about every windows based player can play that so I feel its kinda dumb the x360 cant.

    That is just my main problem with both the x360 and ps3. They are sold as more than gaming machines (especially the ps3) and are also aimed at playing your media. Still they fail at playing half the files I have here at my parents home and none of those are uncommon formats.

    Sure, you can use extra software like TVersity, spend hours trying to get it playing everything (as it will need to convert on the fly) and that way you'll be able to play most stuff but ofcourse its hardly a efficient or clean way.

    So no I think they fail. Your best of with a HTPC or one of those mediaboxes, I heard they pretty much play everything too these days.

    Not sure what version I have, its one from atleast 6 months ago. But it works fine for me. Never crashes and it plays all my files. Dont know about XBMP but MP works fine for me.
     
  15. BoardBonobo

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    I have the PS3 upstairs and use it as our main media player, it streams films\music\photos flawlessly from the PC downstairs without any problems. We use it for BBC iPlayer to catch up on anything we may have missed and as far as being a media hub it's dead on the mark (quiet too). There have been a few Divx files it won't play but I think that has to do with the resolution not being a multiple of 32 or something like that. I use TVersity and recently tried out PMS which is a dedicated PS3 only media server (very efficient too).

    The 360 on the other hand is quite poor, we keep that downstairs for emergencies. It often loses connection, can't handle a number of files, and sounds like someone dropped a wasps nest in a biscuit tin. It loses out on features too like the ability to carve a film up into sections (1, 2, 5 minutes) to navigate like you can on the PS3.

    Overall the PS3 with it's extra features, online flash playing, and realiability have it the 360 pretty soundly beaten in my opinion.
     
  16. DrJay24

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    The 360 is simply to noisy to use for media playback IMO, the two 80mm fans make a irritating hum. I've thought about trying a 3rd party fan replacement, but it voids the warranty.
     
  17. jb

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    I have a NAS box that I use to steam via Twonky to both the PS3 and the 360. I have found them to be about equal in terms of what they can and can not play, the ease of use, ect. Its nice as where one does not do so well, the other does. The hard part is when I want to do something "simple" like just listing to some MP3s while I do some work around the house, it becomes a toss up as they both do that well, so for me its time to flip a coin :)
     
  18. Neb

    Neb Iron "BEAST" Man
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    Does any one of the consoles have the ability or options to enhance sounds and image?

    Like equalizer, 3D virtualisation of sound, custom video decode options, filters etc?

    Becouse that stuff makes huge large difference, especially a good equalizer. Quite something to make sound coming out of your speakers or headphones sound like the room is a disco hall when it really is a small room. With lights and all that stuff party people get all soaked up into the athmosphere! :p
     
  19. Shifty Geezer

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    I've a mate investigating media players. He has Media Portal on the MPC and it looked very good. He showed the PS3 film cut-up as well which is the first time I've seen it despite owning my own PS3, and I have to say that was very smooth and impressive! Who needs chapters?! The film is divided into the piece-size you want, and the thumbnail quickly starts playing as a clip from that point in the film to. Seems a pretty much perfect solution to film navigation to me.
     
  20. patsu

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    HDD videos can be enhanced and/or upscaled on PS3. Just choose the options from the Settings config.

    I don't think they enhance sound though.
     
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