Sony PS3 Gets 3D Blu-ray Playback With Firmware Update 3.50

Jonathan Sutton

As scheduled, Sony has released firmware update version 3.50 for the Playstation 3 (PS3), which among other features adds 3D Blu-ray playback to the popular media/game console system. As the Sony PS3 has gained 3D gaming capability since firmware update 3.30, this leaves 3D photo support as the only remaining missing specification (which will surely be rectified later this year with yet another firmware release) from completing the PS3’s status as a full-fledged 3D media player.

Owners whose Sony PS3 consoles are connected to the internet will be able to download and then install firmware update 3.50 through the [Settings] menu the next time they start up their PS3 consoles.

This firmware release means that Sony PS3 owners effectively get themselves a 3D Blu-ray player at no extra cost, and will surely make PS3 the most prevalent 3D Blu-ray player around given that more than 38 million units have been sold worldwide. Of course, users will still need to own a compatible 3D TV set to enjoy watching 3D movies and playing 3D games from the Sony PS3, but at least this will go some way towards alleviating the current dearth of 3D content available to kickstart the 3D revolution.

There are only a handful of 3D Blu-ray titles available in circulation though, such as Monsters Vs Aliens, Coraline, Ice Age: Dawn Of The Dinosaurs and Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs. The situation is made worse by 3D TV manufacturers scrambling to strike deals with film studios to secure exclusivity on 3D Blu-ray titles to be bundled with their 3D TV sets, which makes it extremely difficult for owners of a certain TV brand to obtain access to titles exclusive to another brand.

Another issue which may irk hardcore audiophiles is that the Sony PS3 cannot output Dolby TrueHD nor DTS-HD Master Audio lossless audio codecs during playback of 3D Blu-ray movies, though this may be fixed in future firmware updates.