I've been doing a lot of experimenting with the PS3 and it's video playback capabilities within the XMB. So far this is what I've been able to discover. Consider it a Starter Guide.
Although PS3 says it supports many formats it's extremely particular with how it handles video. You must comply with Filename, File Extension and Formatting. Since this is an HDTV guide, I will only cover those aspects tested with regards to HDTV. In order to maintain the original quality of a HD TS Capture, i will not be covering any sort of re-encoding or transcoding methods (however there is a PS3 video converter available free here http://www.redkawa.com/videoconverters/
Getting the Video onto the PS3
You have 3 options to get Video onto your PS3, Burn the files to a DVD-R, DVD-9, DVD-RW (all tested). Put the video files on a USB thumb Drive (FAT only), USB HArd Drive (No NTFS), Download it via the built in Web Browser (I recommend Red Kawa - http://www.redkawa.com/fileserver/
) Red Kawa is a freeware file server that will let you download files from your computer from the PS3, this is the quickest way to test.
When using Red Kawa to download, you must ensure that you ahve the latest firmware 1.11 on your PS3, and you must have .MPG as the file extension in order for it to download to the video's section of your PS3. .TS files will only give you the option to save to memory stick or a USB storage device not the PS3 Hard Drive itself. IT's also important to note that it will not download any file names with spaces - dashes or such characters. Underscores are okay. ie. Transporter_2_hd.mpg (is okay)
While you can rename a standard HDTV discussion in .TS format to .MPG and it will detect as video on the PS3 you will likely find that the Audio will not work for you. The video will play without audio. If you check the information on the video file by pressing triangle, it will show as 1920x1080 MPEG2-TS and nothing for the audio. I'm not quite sure why this is. So far the only way I have been able to get AC3 audio to play is to convert it to an MPEG-PS using HDTV2MPEG2. This will then detect in the PS3 as a 1920x1080 MPEG2 with Dolby Digital Audio. I have tested both 5.1 and 2.0 and they seem to be working. Please note converting using VideoRedo does not work at all. I have tried every combination of saving as ts or as mpeg and for some reason the PS3 detects it as unplayable or corrupted video. Again I'm not sure why.
I have also noticed that the PS3 is not able to play 1920x1088 video, or 1280x1088. I'm guessing that the PS3 does not like anything but standard hdtv formats.
I don't understand enough about H264 to try to convert it without re-encoding to a format that the PS3 can use, perhaps someone else could try a few things out and get back to me.
Comparing Video output with Xbox 360 Media Center Streaming.
I have directly compared discussions using the sin city cmore 50hz and transporter 2 as a comparison playing them simultaneously on the PS3 and the Xbox360. I find that the PS3 gives a more true representation of colour and blacks. However Both consoles do a great job with HDTV. I have always found Xbox360 to be slightly "overbright" when using the 360 with a plasma its difficult to always readjust brightness settings, when all the other devices Xbox1/DVDplayer/Satellite Receiver - all seem to have the black levels correct. I notice this also while watching dvds on the xbox 360, the blacks are often more of a dark grey than a pure black.. The ps3 seems to be outputting a better pure black. After doing a little more research it seems that the xbox360 pedestal is in fact set a 7.5 at least through component which is causing the "overbrightness"
More on the Xbox 360 Brightness (http://www.hometheaterhifi.com/cgi-b...unction=search
"The 360 passes a below black pluge, but its default black level is 7.5 IRE with no way of adjusting it to 0 IRE. You'll have to adjust your display accordingly, as black levels will appear elevated. The white level of this player is a tad low at 98 IRE but still within our passing criteria. I wish manufacturers would pay closer attention to their output levels, as a properly calibrated display will have to be re-adjusted for these issues.
Blu-Ray Authoring to DVD+-9R/RW (unsuccessful)
It is possible to author a Blu-ray disc onto DVD-R/RW/+-9 however I have not found a working solution as of yet. These are the steps taken so far.
So far I have made a few attempts using Ulead VideoStudio 10.0 (pre-removal of blu-ray authoriing).
Load up Video Studio, go to the Share tab, then click on the Create Disc Button. On the next screen add your media (which must be in MPEG PS format) Click the bottom drop down box and choose blu-ray, and set your settings checkbox to Do no re-encode compliant video files.
You can chose to create a menu. (however I have found that while the menu background page will come up, you can not navigate or use any of the menu controls).
Go to the next step, since you do not have a blu-ray burner, you will not be able to burn directly to disc, but you can create the disc image as an ISO and burn it with nero. Please remember I have been completely unsuccessful in burning a Blu-ray disc to DVD+-9 aside from being able to see the menu background. If anyone has had any better luck, or a working tutorial please let me know.
Conclusion. There is much more experimenting to do with regards to HDTV video playback on the PS3. Linux will hopefully offer us a competative media center to XBMC but this will take some time. Hope this has helped some get started with HD playback on their PS3
Xbox 360 is still currently the only console solution for "network streaming" of Video content to your HD connected console
PS3 is currently the only solution(xbox-hddvd aside) for burning HD .TS files to DVD/DVD9 for playback, but involves a conversion to PS MPG
[UPDATE 1] It seems that even after converting the HD .TS to a PS stream, the PS3 will play the audio, but not send it as bitstream to your AV receiver, or at least I have been unable to get the AC3 decode to come on for my receiver, it seems Prologic at best. I've also noticed the same problem with the Downloadable Trailers from Sony, when playing through the XMB it seems all you will get is Prologic, if you boot into a blu-ray or a game (ie. motorstorm game demo) it will flip to the Dolby Digital Decoding right away.
If anyone has some more information with regards to H264 TS files and how they may be losslessly converted to Mpeg4 or another PS3 compatible format, please share your ideas in this thread.
There also may be some errors with time remaining/playing on larger Mpeg2 TS files, ie. i have seen 40 minute clips show up as 5 minutes, if this occurs you can only skip ahead to the 5 minute mark, you will have no ff rw features beyond the 5 minutes, however you can watch the entire clip, even if the play time clock is stopped.
Additionally for those who don't know the PS3 defaults to resuming where you last left off in the video, which is a nice feature, however you can always skip back to the beginning by pressing triangle and using the pop up menu option. This also stands true for blu-ray movies, provided you do not eject the movie. ie. you could be watching a blu-ray movie, exit out to message a friend or play a game, then go back to the same spot where you left off in the movie. (360 added this feature in the spring update)
I've successfully installed the official sony approved version of linux yellowdog 5.0 for ps3. It's a very smooth install and and seems to be a good start into the homebrew scene for ps3. Currently hardware acceleration is not supported within linux, hopefully this will be added in future updates. Here is a good link showing video running in VLC and mplayer plus some installation instructionhttp://forums.qj.net/f-ps3-linux-283...-50-81670.html