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Sony Playstation TV

£35.99
graphics
features
performance
games

3.6

5

Overall

If you've already got the necessary peripherals and are embedded in the Sony universe, there's a strong case for splashing out on the Playstation TV.

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Playstation TV Price History

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Haydn Fisher

28th March 2015

By Haydn Fisher

I am a teenager who likes reviewing products.


The PlayStation TV, another media playing TV device? Or is it something more? Let's find out.

It comes with the standard stuff, power adapter, and no matter what bundle kit you get you'll always get an HDMI cable included with the PSTV.

It's cheap, and if you had no idea what it was, you'd think it was a set-top Roku device, but it's much more. It can actually play full games, not like a few apps, genuinely some games from the Vita, PS One, PSP Games and whatever a PlayStation Mini game is. You can put Vita cards into the side of the unit, which essentially makes it more of a Vita anyway.

Playstation TV

If you look at the main interface, it's basically a large Vita without the touchscreen ability. Yet, if you just buy the base unit, you won't even get a controller, so it would actually be impossible to use. Count that into the price of the unit if you aren't purchasing the one with the controller.

Good thing is though, if you own a PS4 as well as this PSTV, you can basically replicate your PS4 to it. Which would make you have "multiple" PS4's throughout your home (theoretically). It works, depending on the speed and quality of your network.

How does it look and perform? Well, like other reviews on the internet that I've investigated, there seems to be a bit of lag while playing Vita games, I've played a Vita before (I do not own one) and it just didn't seem as slow playing as this did. Other than that, it displays at 960x544, unfortunately. While actually playing games it's not really that bad, I can't really say that the rest of the menus looked good. It just seemed like the whole interface was on my phone and I've plugged it into the TV or something. Not good.

Playstation TV

Yet, this is where I have to go into value for money. A used PS3 can do everything that this does (pretty much), plus more. Why would you go for this, other than the fact it's smaller and uses less power? With a PS3 you can play games and do everything you'd need to do, instead of having a limited box that plays older games. Plus the PS3 has a good resolution, well, at least the menus look good on my widescreen TV.

I can't comment on the price of the PSTV or a used PS3 as they are constantly changing.

Let's move onto the positives and negatives, it's time.

Positives

Footprint- It's tiny, like really tiny. If you're short on space or something, this would be a good thing to add to your entertainment center. It doesn't use much power at all either.

Ease of use- It's so easy to use, it's basically a Vita with a controller. Everything is massive, and I guess having a lower resolution could maybe be a plus if you have bad eyesight and you'll be able to see the massive words?

Ability to transmit PS4- Just like the Vita, this can transmit your PS4 over your network to make it seem like you have another PS4, kinda.

Playstation TV

Negatives

Slow- The whole box is unfortunately not very fast. It's quite laggy actually, and I wouldn't recommend purchasing this if you can't stand unfinished products.

Anyone remember the OUYA?- It's essentially the same thing, just by Sony. If you didn't like the OUYA you will not like the PSTV.

PS3 is the same price- You can buy a used PS3 and do much more than you could on just the PSTV, unfortunately.

No controller?- There isn't a controller included with the PSTV, even as a base console. I'd rather pay a little bit more and get the controller with it, it makes sense.

Low space- You only get 1GB with this thing when it's new, and in 2015 that is NO where near enough.

Overall, if you're in the market for a small plug-in TV box then this may cross your mind, but you have to really consider if you really want something like this or maybe trying to get an older console. Your call.

Sam Applegate

11th December 2014

By Sam Applegate

I like bacon sandwiches.


Sony's Playstation TV is a fascinating little device that in a funny kind of way occupies a similar kind of space to the Nvidia Shield Tablet, an Apple Tv or Chromecast stick. Gaming continues to evolve and become more complex than just being about the big consoles, and if any of the giants of the videogame industry can make it work, it's probably Sony.

Black Boxes Everywhere

Essentially the Playstation TV is the same as the Vita, except without the touchscreen. Physically, it's a tiny black box that will easily fit into the palm of an adult's hand, so light that plugging all the cables into it seems slightly obscene, like it's at the centre of some kind of alien life support system doing something impossibly important. There's an Ethernet port, HDMI, USB, and slots for the games and memory cards themselves.

It's designed to allow you to play your Vita games on a big TV, to stream games from Sony's enormous cloud catalogue online and to allow you to stream PS4 games onto another TV. So if, for example, the PS4 is rigged up in the living room, but it's Saturday night and the resident female population want to watch X Factor/Strictly/whatever and you've been given the boot, you can use your Playstation TV to hook up to the PS4 from the comfort of another room.

Inevitably, streamed content from a more powerful console doesn't look as good on the Playstation TV as it does if played directly on the original. Depending on the title, you can stream games in 720 p or 1080i, meaning that games don't look quite as good. Still, the Playstation TV effectively turns any monitor into your console.

That ability also means that multiplayer suddenly becomes a lot easier. Instead of two Vitas and potentially two copies of the game, you need just one console and two controllers. Instead of fiddly touchscreens and hunching over a small screen, you can sit back with a proper dualshock in your hands.

If you're taking the kids on holiday or you fancy a quick gaming session in your hotel room, it's now possible. That's a big plus.

Square Pegs Into Round Holes?

It's true that there's an enormous number of potential titles for the Playstation TV, but on a more prosaic level, a number of PS Vita games are frankly a bit awkward to play on the Playstation Vita and there are plenty that haven't been converted/adapted for the new console yet.

Part of the problem is undoubtedly that the Vita has the benefit of a touchscreen, and that requires a degree of work in order to match games up to the new format. Understandable enough. What's less forgiveable is the rather cruel way that Sony decided to create holding screens for Little Big Planet and Gravity Rush, only for the TV to inform you that they're not available. All that anticipation, at the pretty screen, only for it to be dashed.

Downsides

If you don't already have the right accessories, the Playstation TV isn't cheap. Alongside the hardly insignificant cost of the console itself, you're also going to need a dualshock controller and one of Sony's proprietary memory cards for save games and any downloaded content. The latter in particular aren't cheap, so for a total new comer, you're looking at a cost of approaching £200 if you go for a 64GB card.

One critical issue for the Playstation TV is the speed of your internet connection, particularly for remote play. It's a sorry fact that if you're living in a rural area and are currently afflicted by pathetic broadband speeds, it's going to have a massive negative impact on your experience of the console. On the other hand, if you can put up with more cables, using hard wires will improve the quality of the experience; just make sure to go into the settings menu to turn off WiFi connections and run it over LAN instead. Still, everyone hates lag, so it's something to be aware of, particularly if you like to play fast-paced games.

There are some other issues that have irked buyers. One is the current absence of many content-supplying apps. There's no Netflix, for example, so you can abandon for the time being any ideas that the Playstation TV will is like Roku for gamers. The absence will probably be fixed in the fullness of time, but for the present, too bad. The internet browser isn't much good, either. Seeing as surfing and messaging isn't the Playstation TV's real priority, though, it's not too much of a fault.

For all of the flaws and criticisms of the Playstation TV that we've covered, its potential is pretty awesome. Perhaps Sony have rushed the release in order to get it out for Christmas, and they deserve some flak for that fact. Even so, once a lot of the software kinks are ironed out, more games are adapted for the new console and those premium apps like Netflix, iPlayer and so forth are added, you're going to have a great little content streaming device for all of the incredible games and media in the Sony library.

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To read more on this model, check out the Playstation TV homepage here (opens new window).

Images

  • Stream your PS4 games to another HD TV when someone else is using the main TV in your home – start playing on PS4, continue playing on PS TV.
  • Play compatible PS Vita, PSP and PS one games on your TV.
  • Watch TV shows and movies streamed or downloaded from the PlayStation Store
  • Start playing games straight away with 1GB of built-in memory

Model

CPU

GPU

RAM (gb)

Storage (gb)

Rating

Price

Microsoft Xbox 360

Xenon-3core

ATI Xenos

.512

4

£389.99

Microsoft Xbox One

AMD 8 Core

1.23 TFLOPS

8

500

£179.99

Microsoft Xbox One X

Custom CPU @ 2.30 GHz 8 Cores

Custom GPU @ 1.172 GHz 40 CUs Polaris Features 6.0 TFLOPS

12 GB GDDR5 @ 326 GB/s

£384.99

Nintendo 2DS

Dual-core

PICA200

.125

4

£N/A

Nintendo 2DS XL

4x VFPv2 Co-Processor

804 MHz ARM11 MPCore Quad-core

256

4GB MicroSD Included (replaceable)

£125.00

Nintendo 3DS

Nintendo ARM

Digital Media Professionals PICA2000

.128

2

£144.99

Nintendo Classic Mini SNES

-

-

-

-

£49.99

Nintendo Switch

Nvidia "customised" Tegra X1

-

4

32 + MicroSD

£274.99

Nintendo Wii U

Multi-Core

AMD Radeon

2

8

£459.99

Nvidia Shield Tablet

ARM Cortex A15 CPU

K1 192 Core Kepler GPU

2

16

£N/A

Playstation TV

N/A

N/A

N/A

1

£35.99

Playstation Vita Slim

Quadcore

SGX543MP4+

0.125

0.5

£N/A

Sony Playstation 3 Slim

Cell Broadband EngineTM

RSX

0.256

500

£399.85

Sony PlayStation 4

AMD 8 Core

1.84 TFLOPS

8

500

£349.99


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