PS3 version 2.01 firmware is now available (as of 19 November 2007) for download as an update to ver. 2.0 that was released about 10 days earlier. Version 2.0 didn't include any significant enhancements for Blu-ray functions. As previously reported, before the update was released, this update is focused on gaming updates. It looks like we will have to wait for the next firmware update (version 2.0x or perhaps 2.1) to get the expected BD major updates (to Profile 1.1 and perhaps support for DTS HD-MA). It appears that ver. 2.01 is just a clean-up of ver. 2.0 with a few bug fixes. I would expect to the next firmware release in December.November 30, 2007 UPDATE:
The official list of changes with version 2.0 (and version 2.01) is listed HERE
Now that forum members (myself included) have had a few days to use the new firmware and have reported the following observations (see postings below) about what has changed, or not changed, with going from firmware version 1.9x to 2.0 as related only to Blu-ray Disc, DVD, user interface and general media playback functions (changes related to just Gaming are not listed below):NOTE: Firmware ver. 2.0 is not a major update for Blu-ray Disc playback. It does not include support for DTS HD-MA nor does it provide an update to BD Profile 1.1. Those enhancements are expected in future firmware update(s).
1. Be sure to do a reset of your PS3 after the new firmware has been installed (you can do a hard reset turning the PS3 off then unplugging the AC Power cord for a few seconds then pluging it back in).
2. With ver. 1.9x software Blacker-than-Black (BTB) video levels were passed over HDMI when the video was carried in component video format (i.e., YPbPr), but not in RGB format. With the ver. 2.0 firmware update some members were reporting that BTB was no longer supported with either component or RGB formats via HDMI. However, it has now been reported by more than one AVS Forum member that their updated PS3 is passing BTB via HDMI when it is set to output component video format. Also some HDTVs can display Whiter-than-White (WTW) and that is also supported by the PS3 via HDMI when use component video mode. Note that some HDTV's cannot display BTB video level when input via the TV's HDMI.
In order to get the PS3 to pass BTB and WTW it must be configured correctly in the PS3's setup menus. Specifically in order to get both Blacker-than-Black and Whiter-Than-White to be output from the PS3 use both of the following two settings (note some HDTVs can only accept video in RGB mode via their HDMI interface and in that case you will need to configure PS3 to output RGB via HDMI (or set the HDMI mode to 'Auto') and you will not be able to get BTB nor WTW):
- Settings menu
- BD/DVD Settings
- BD/DVD Video Output Format (HDMI) set to Y Pb/Cb Pr
- Settings menu
- Display Settings
- Y Pb/Cb Pr
/Cr Super-White (HDMI) set to on
3. Can now play 5.1 surround sound audio files from the XMB (XrossMediaBar) screen.
4. Can select a different Theme (or create a custom Theme) for the XMB screen. More info on PS3 Themes is HERE
5. The PS3's web browser is faster with the new firmware.
6. A few people are reporting issues using PS2 contollers (or other PS2 devices that plug into the controller port) in combination with a PS2-to-PS3 (USB) adapter. I'm not having any issues with my PS2 DVD IR remote receiver plugged into a Radio Shack PS2-to-USB adapter.
7. Some people were reporting some lockup problems with playing discs and/or using the web browser with the version 2.0 firmware release. It appears that the version 2.01 release has successfully corrected most of these lockup issues.November 28, 2007 Addition
ANTICIPATED FUTURE PS3 FIRMWARE UPDATES
There are two key features related to the Blu-ray functions of the PS3 that are much anticipated, but not officially announced by Sony to be included in future firmware updates.
1. A firmware update to support BD Profile 1.1 features. There is substantial evidence from industry insiders, as well as recent related statements by Sony officials, to conclude that a firmware update is coming soon (probably in December 2007) that will upgrade the PS3 from a Profile 1.0 BD player up to a Profile 1.1 player. The first of the BD discs that will use the new features (e.g., PiP) supported by Profile 1.1 are planned for release January 1, 2008 and it appears that Sony plans to update the PS3 firmware to support Profile 1.1 before the release of the new Profile 1.1 enabled movie titles. More information on the BD Profiles can be found here
2. A firmware update to support the decoding and output in LPCM of the surround sound encoded in DTS HD-Master Audio (DTS HD-MA) format. A previous firmware update added the equivalent support for the decoding and output in LPCM format of Dolby TrueHD and there are reports that Sony is working with DTS on a software decoder implementation for the PS3 to provide the equivalent capability for handling DTS HD-MA. Fox has been releasing movies on BD for some time that includes DTS HD-MA audio as the highest quality format on those discs, but the current PS3 is limited to supporting the lower fidelity core DTS and Dolby Digital formats from these Fox titles. While a firmware update to support the decoding of DTS HD-MA might be forthcoming as part of the anticipated December 2007 update for BD Profile 1.1, a more likely scenario is a DTS HD-MA update will follow a month or two later.Note: Some have hoped that at some point Sony would release a firmware update that would enable a bitstream output of both Dolby True-HD and DTS HD-MA via HDMI, however it appears to now have been confirmed that the HDMI transmitter chip used in the PS3 cannot support this capability (see here) and also see the final sentence of the 3rd para. of this old press release from SiL ,the manufacturer of the HDMI transmitter chip used in the PS3. Therefore, the PS3 will be limited to internal decoding and outputting via LPCM for the advanced audio formats.