Game Consoles Sucking Up $1 Billion in Energy Costs Per Year

via Gizmodo by Adam Frucci on 12/30/08

According to a study by the National Resources Defense Council, Americans use up about $1 billion worth of energy per year powering video game consoles, enough to power the entire city of San Diego.

It’s a pretty staggering figure, but I’m willing to bet that figures on the power consumption of things like refrigerators and washing machines are even worse. Any serious appliance is going to suck up a lot of juice, but that doesn’t mean we should throw them all out.

However, those folks who leave their consoles on all the time aren’t doing their energy bills any favors. With the Xbox 360 consuming 119 watts in active mode and the PS3 consuming 150 watts, turning these systems off when you aren’t playing is kind of an obvious move. But apparently a lot of people just leave them on all the time, leading to one very basic question: why? Both systems have features that’ll shut down automatically after a certain amount of idle time, seems like a no brainer to turn that on if you’re too damned lazy to turn them off yourself when done playing.

[NRDC via EcoGeek]

Sony reduces the production cost of the PS3 by 35%

via Boy Genius Report by Kelly Hodgkins on 12/30/08

ps3

Yesterday we relayed the news that Sony’s Playstation 3 sales for the holiday period were lower than expected, yet Sony was remaining optimistic. Apparently, some good news on the production front sheds some light on how the company can manage to keep its chin up amidst some pretty terrible sales performance. iSuppli has broken down the production cost of Sony’s latest PlayStation 3 and Sony has reportedly shaved 35% off the cost of the original PS3 unit. Through changes to various components and integration, Sony has cut the price of manufacturing the PS3 console from $690.23 to $448.73. By integrating components into the core silicon of the PS3, Sony has also reduced the number of parts used from 4,048 in the previous-generation 60GB model to a modest 2,820 in the current model. With further changes and improvements, iSuppli estimates that Sony could soon be breaking even – perhaps just in time for that much anticipated price cut we’ve all been waiting for.

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Product zenergy: Microsoft making ‘Zune Xbox app’

via Joystiq by Randy Nelson on 12/22/08

PlayStation 3 and PSP play nice together, so we’ve always been a bit baffled as to why Microsoft hasn’t created similar synergy between the Xbox 360 and its iPod-chaser, Zune. Now it looks like MS is taking steps to formally introduce the devices to one another – at least that’s what one of its job postings suggests.

According to CNET, Microsoft is looking to add a user experience designer to its Zune group, with a focus on the Zune user interface, Zune PC application – used to access the Zune Marketplace – and … the Zune Xbox application? It could be that the company is working on a means to (finally) download, manage and transfer Zune Marketplace content on 360 to Zune (and vice-versa). MS has said that the New Xbox Experience will make it easier to roll out extension services (see Netflix and Photo Sharing) without the need for major system updates.

[Via Engadget]

Get a PlayStation credit card, get $150 off PS3 purchase

via PS3 Fanboy by Majed Athab on 11/24/08

Still looking to score a PS3 for yourself or a friend? Then take a look at this deal which can net you an 80GB PS3 for as low as $250 and a 160GB for only $350. So what’s the catch you ask? You’ll need to apply for a PlayStation credit card. Though it isn’t that much of a catch when you consider that there is no annual fee, you’ll get full Visa Platinum benefits, and double the normal warranty protection all alongside the discounted offer (and further Sony-related discounts in the future).

To avail of the deal, you can apply here and grab the discount online, or apply here and be instantly approved at any authorized Sony retailer. This offer is only valid until December 31, 2008. Just make sure you double-check those APR percentages and see to it that they meet your approval before making any decision. And, if you don’t know what APR is, then you’re probably not old enough for a credit card. Try again next year children!

PS3 tops CNN’s ‘Best of the Blu-ray players’ list

via PS3 Fanboy by Alan Tsang on 11/26/08

CNNMoney has put together a list of the five best Blu-ray players you can currently find on the market. Sitting pretty at the top is our beloved PS3, with the highest grade given of A-. Why such a high grade? The ability to upgrade to Profile 2.0, excellent picture quality, 7.1 Dolby TrueHD audio, and fast load times for movies were just some of the reasons CNN cited. Their biggest complain seems to be about the lack of an IR receptor, which means you can’t use universal remotes with it.

Not to worry, CNET and RemoteShoppe has got you covered in that department. Each site has their own Infrared-to-Bluetooth converter guides to help you pick out the best equipment for your needs. Check it out here and here.

Source — CNN via EngadgetHD
Source — CNET and RemoteShoppe via Engadget

Do You Use a Console Camera When You Play Games?

via geeksugar — Geek is chic. by geeksugar on 11/7/08

The first time I used a console camera was when my BF brought one home in a Trials of Topoq game bundle, which has you using body movements to direct a ball through a maze. Admittedly, it was the single nerdiest moment in my life, mostly because I’d never used a camera while playing a game before, but more so because the game was totally unlike anything I’d ever seen. Seriously, it’s pretty darn nerdy — just check out this review for proof.

But now that more and more games are incorporating the Playstation Eye or Xbox Vision Camera into gameplay, I’m glad we picked one up when we did. SingStar just wouldn’t be the same without reviewing the snapshots and “Golden Moments” of me and my girls singing at the top of our lungs to Britney, and Little Big Planet wouldn’t feel like home without posting up “Polaroid Stickers” of us all over the game!

Do You Use a Console Camera When You Play Games?

Heck yeah — I use a console cam with a lot of games.
No — I don’t like cameras in general!
Huh? You can use cameras while you play games?
Something else. See my comment below.

Fallout 3 graphics performance in-depth

via Neowin.net / All by Julio Franco on 11/7/08
Recently we looked at how various ATI and Nvidia based graphics cards fared in Far Cry 2 and the results were somewhat unexpected as we found that mid-range graphics cards were capable of playing this game in all of its visual glory. Today we have yet another impressive new game called Fallout 3, which has had the same level of hype and anticipation surrounding it as Far Cry 2 did during the entire year.

Fallout 3’s story is interesting enough and should keep fans of previous Fallout games happy. Still, we are more interested in showing you how your graphics card should perform in this game. Fallout 3 was built using the Gamebryo engine that has also powered other popular titles like The Elder Scrolls IV, Empire Earth 3, and Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning.

As you will appreciate in our visual quality comparison section of this article, Fallout 3 is a striking looking game and the recommended hardware requirements are quite high. Actually they seem much more realistic than what we usually see from developers in their official recommendations.

View: Fallout 3 graphics performance in-depth @ TechSpot

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