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60GB Playstation 3 unit with a box and a controller.
The PlayStation 3's hardware consists of both the internal systems and a number of peripherals such as the DUALSHOCK 3 controller.

Unless otherwise noted, the following specifications are based on a press release by Sony at the E3 2005 conference, and slides from a Sony presentation at the 2006 Game Developer's Conference.

Central processing unit

The PS3 uses the Cell microprocessor, which is made up of one 3.2GHz PowerPC-based "Power Processing Element" (PPE) and six accessible Synergistic Processing Elements . A seventh runs in a special mode and is dedicated to aspects of the OS and security, and an eighth is a spare to improve production yields. PlayStation 3's Cell CPU achieves 204 GFLOPS single precision float and 15 GFLOPS double precision. The PS3 has 256MB of Rambus XDR DRAM, clocked at CPU die speed. As of firmware update 2.01, 32MB of the XDR memory is reserved by the PS3's XrossMediaBar user interface, more XDR memory is required for multiple XMB operations to functions at one time .

Graphics processing unit

The graphics processing unit, according to Nvidia, is based on the NVIDIAmarker G70 (previously known as NV47) architecture. The GPU makes use of 256MB GDDR3 RAM clocked at 700MHz with an effective transmission rate of 1.4GHz and up to 224MB of the 3.2GHz XDR main memory via the CPU (480MB max).


To date, the PS3 has had several component revisions which serve to reduce power consumption. This in turn results in production savings, lower heat production, lower cooling requirements and quieter running. Since launch, the Cell has had its process shrunk from 90 nm to 45 nm. According to rumors and early Sony plans the RSX GPU has also been shrunk, but that the actual switch would have happened has not been confirmed by Sony or third party disassembly.

Further improvements were introduced with the PS3 Slim, with a move to a 45nm Cell which resulted in a further 34% reduction in power consumption over the 65 nm Cell

Feature: 20GB









GPU Process 90 nm 90 nm 90 nm 90 nm 90 nm 90 nm 65 nm 65 nm 65 nm
CPU Process 90 nm 65 nm 90 nm 90 nm 65 nm 65 nm 65 nm 65 nm 45 nm
Typical Power Consumption 180W 135W 180W 180W 135W 135W 110W 110W 73W

Model numbers

On all models of the PS3, the last seven characters of the serial number make up the console's model number. This begins with "CECH", followed by a letter indicating what model the system is. The last two characters of the model number indicate what region the system is from.

Model 60GB









unknown 40GB






Key: NA - North America, EU/PAL - Europe/PAL region, JP - Japanmarker, KO - Koreamarker


  • CECHM, CECHN, and CECHO have not been used
a 90 nm RSX/65 nm Cell fabrication
b 65 nm Cell fabrication
c Registered with FCC on January 31, 2008 with request for confidentiality
d Registered with FCC on January 31, 2008 with request for confidentiality
e Registered with FCC on July 3, 2008 with request for confidentiality
f 45 nm Cell fabrication

Region Japan North America Australia United Kingdom Europe/Middle East Korea Singapore Taiwan Russia unused unused Latin America Hong Kong
Number 00 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12


The PS3 supports numerous SDTV and HDTV resolutions (from 480i / 576i up to 1080p) and connectivity options (such as HDMI 1.3a and component video). In terms of audio, the PS3 supports a number of formats, including 7.1 digital audio, Dolby TrueHD, DTS-HD Master Audio and others; audio output is possible over stereo RCA cables (analog), optical digital cables, or HDMI. For the optical disc drive, a wide variety of DVD and CD formats are supported, as well as Blu-ray Discs. A 20, 40, 60, 80 or 160GB 2.5" SATA 150 hard disk is pre-installed. In the 60 GB and 80 GB configurations, flash memory can also be used — either Memory Sticks, CompactFlash cards, or SD/MMC cards. All models support USB memory devices; flash drives and external hard drives are both automatically recognized. However, they must be formatted with the FAT32 file system — the PS3 does not support the NTFS file system that is the standard in the Windows NT family. For communication, the system sported four USB 2.0 ports at the front on the 20 and 60 GB models as well as the NTSC 80GB model, but the 40GB and 80GB PAL models only have 2 USB ports. All models (80 & 160 GB) released after August 2008 have been reduced to two USB ports, as well as dropping CompactFlash and SD card support. One Gigabit Ethernet port, Bluetooth 2.0 support, and built-in Wi-Fi are available on the 40, 60, 80, 120, and 160;GB versions.

Form and power consumption

The PlayStation 3 console is approximately 6 kg (approximately 13 pounds), 325 mm (W) × 98 mm (H) × 274 mm (D).

The case was designed by Teiyu Goto of Sony, and uses the 'Spiderman' font.

The power consumption of the initial PlayStation 3 units based on 90 nm Cell CPU ranges from 170–200 watts during normal use, despite having a 380 watt power supply. The power consumption of newer 40GB PlayStation 3 (65 nm process Cell/90 nm RSX) units ranges from 120-140 watts during normal use. The latest 80GB units use both 65 nm Cell and 65 nm RSX, and have further lowered power consumption to between 90-120W. The PS3 Slim reduces this power consumption by another 34% with the use of a 45nm Cell.

Universal power supply

The power supply can operate on both 60 Hz and 50 Hz power grids.It uses a standard C14 IEC connector and a C13 power cord appropriate for the region it is being used in. The power supply on the "fat" models are capable of delivering approximately 380W, although the PS3 has never been measured using this much power. The power supply was reduced to 250 watts in the 120 GB "Slim" model.

Japanese PS3 models produced since 2007 are capable of delivering 280W of power, in part due to the energy efficiency of the newer 65 nm-based cell processors.

Disc drive

The PlayStation 3 disc drive is an all-in-one type allowing the use of different formats.


The Blu-ray drive is a 2x speed, region coded type allowing the use of:


The DVD drive is an 8x speed, region coded type allowing the use of:


The Compact Disc drive is a 24x speed, region coded type allowing the use of:

Official accessories

The PlayStation 3 Sixaxis is a controller that is very similar in appearance to that of its predecessors, the DualShock and DualShock 2. The SIXAXIS features finer analog sensitivity; more trigger-like R2 and L2 buttons; a PS (“home”) button; and a USB mini-B port for charging the internal battery and for wired play. The PlayStation 3 supports up to 7 simultaneous controllers over Bluetooth. The Sixaxis is named for its ability to detect motion in the full six degrees; however, unlike the PlayStation 2's DualShock, the Sixaxis controller has no vibration feature.

At its press conference at the 2007 Tokyo Game Show, Sony announced the DualShock 3 (trademarked DUALSHOCK 3), a PlayStation 3 controller with the same function and design as the Sixaxis, but with vibration capability. Hands-on accounts describe the controller as being slightly heavier than the standard Sixaxis controller, and capable of vibration forces comparable to the DualShock 2.

The PlayStation 3 Memory Card Adaptor is a device that allows data to be transferred from PlayStation and PlayStation 2 memory cards to the PlayStation 3's hard disk. The device has a cable that connects to the PS3's USB port on one end, and features a legacy PS2 memory card port on the other end.

Using Bluetooth, the PlayStation 3 BD Remote allows users to control videos and music on Blu-ray Disc and DVD. In Japan, the device was available starting December 7, 2006. The PS3 will accept signals only via its Bluetooth Remote, as the console does not have an infrared receiver; this prevents the use of universal remotes with the system. The Blu-ray Disc movie Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby was included with the initial 400,000 release copies of the PS3 in North America, while the first 500,000 European PlayStation Network activations after launch received a free copy of the Blu-ray release of Casino Royale.

On April 25, 2007, Sony announced the PlayStation Eye. This is an updated version of the PlayStation 2 peripheral, the EyeToy. The camera is capable of capturing 60 frames per second video at 640×480 resolution and 120  frame/s video at 320×240 resolution. The four-channel microphone on the Eye can block out background noise. The camera will support live video chat and voice chat without a headset, and will be launched in the United States on October 23 for US$39.99, and in Australia on November 8 for AU$79.95. It will also be bundled with the card game The Eye of Judgment in the United States on the same day as the camera itself for US$69.99, and in Japan and Australia on October 25, 2007 for JP¥9,980 and AU$159.95, respectively.

Official PlayStation 3 HDMI and Component AV cables are also available for retail.

Backward compatibility

The PlayStation 3 does not include interfaces for legacy PlayStation peripherals, though tested a legacy controller using a PS2-to-USB adapter, finding that it is compatible, though most other devices (such as the Guitar Hero controller) may not be compatible. However, with the release of firmware 1.70 for the Playstation 3, Sony has added support for previous Guitar Hero controllers with generic PS2-to-USB adapters (although the whammy bar is not functional). Nyko started production on the "Play Adaptor", a PS2-to-USB adapter allowing for guitars and other PlayStation 2 peripherals to be used on the PlayStation 3 and was scheduled for release in Q2/2007, but Nyko stated at the end of March that the production of this device had been postponed due to compatibility problems with the PS3. The PS3 supports both the USB EyeToy camera/webcam and SOCOM Headset for video and voice chat. A memory card adapter is available so users can copy their old PS/PS2 game saves to a virtual memory card on the PS3’s hard drive. The PlayStation 3 can also use Memory Sticks to store and save data for PlayStation and PlayStation 2 software. New PlayStation 3 systems no longer support PS2 playback (whether through use of the Emotion Engine & Graphics Synthesizer hardware or through the Graphics Synthesizer and software emulation of the Emotion Engine) or Memory Sticks.


  9. Official Playstation Magazine, issue 005
  10. PlayStation 3 "Safety & Support" manual
  11. PlayStation 3 80GB model for Mexico "Safety & Support" manual
  12. PlayStation 3 "Quick Reference" manual

External links

Official websites

Auxiliary sites by Sony
* Hardware Press ImagesFeatures and promotion siteUser's GuideSupport


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