Very useful thread for those of us who want to use the PS3 for Blu-ray movie playback primarily. I scored a 20GB PS3 off eBay for less than $700, so prices are definiely getting more reasonable. My Sammy player is now on eBay.
Here's a mini-FAQ I made for myself w/info from a couple of sources. Does all this sound right?
Will it decode the advanced audio codecs?
It will decode everything except DTS-HD. DTS-HD decoding is expected with a firmware update early next year. You must have a HDMI 1.1+ receiver to experience the new formats, since the PS3 doesn't have the hardware to support 5.1/7.1 analog output.
How about the 720p/1080i issue?
The 720p problem does not affect BD movie playback. For now, only games in 720p can be output as 720p; not 1080i. The PS3 does support 1080i for BD playback just fine.
What about Blu-ray movie disc playback?
If you want to play a movie with the PS3 unit already on, you insert the disc and wait for something to happen, except nothing happens. The issue is that, if already turned on, the machine does not automatically start the movie disc. Instead, the newly inserted BD-ROM appears as an option above the Video menu index. You have to manually select the BD-ROM by scrolling up to that spot, and then select it by pressing the X button on the controller. The movie disc is still not identified by name, only as a BD-ROM.
Can regular DVDs be upconverted to 720p/1080i?
No, not at the moment.
Can multichannel SACDs be played?
Will an external hard drive connected via the USB port be recognized?
Yes, if hard drive is pre-formatted as FAT32.
HD Media Keen Videosaurus