As many of you probably know, PlayStation Eye is coming, so I wanted to share a little bit about what that means for all you video-bloggers, gamers and would-be-actors and directors out there.
While most of you know that PlayStation Eye is being bundled with The Eye of Judgment game, I also wanted to let you know it’ll be out on store shelves as a stand-alone product, too. PlayStation Eye has a lot of cool features and capabilities.
One question I’ve seen asked a lot is: “What makes PlayStation Eye different from its predecessor, the EyeToy camera?” Lots. For a start, PlayStation Eye was engineered from the onset to perform well in low-light conditions. It also has a 2-setting zoom lens (normal and wide angle) with fixed focus. What does that mean? Well, a lot less fussing around than previous cameras. PlayStation Eye gets a sharp, clear picture at 640 x 480 resolution at 60 frames per second (at 320 x 240 it looks even better at 120 fps)! It picks up image and motion in varying light conditions and doesn’t need your help to focus.
It also has a built-in 4-microphone array that allows you to enjoy online AV chat and in-game voice chat, in what we’re calling a “natural environment,” meaning, not awkwardly leaning toward your camera or speaking abnormally loud just so the mic picks up your voice. IMHO, this microphone really does do away with the need for a headset.
The PlayStation Eye does an excellent job of filtering out background noise for a clearer voice connection, but it also has twice the frame rate than most standard cameras (this is part of what sets it apart from any other webcam or camera for this generation of consoles), allowing for faster and more natural tracking, responsiveness and smoothness. I think if you take all of this into consideration, PlayStation Eye is an ideal camera for AV Chat on your PS3.
All of this sounds like a bunch of technical and marketing speak, I know, but the difference is clear when you plug it in; AV Chats are smooth, crisp, and from my experiences, better than what I’ve seen on any PC. And of course, on the PS3, you can use AV Chat with anyone on your friends list, anywhere in the world.
AV Chat is just the start for the PlayStation Eye. Along with some very cool, free content and fun activities available to Eye users via the PSN, keep your “eye” out (sorry, I couldn’t resist) for some upcoming games that integrate the Eye in really innovative ways. While games like Eye of Judgment use the camera to play the game itself, other upcoming games like SingStar (PS3) take advantage of the PlayStation Eye’s video capabilities so you can do things like make your own personalized music videos to share with family and friends online. Soon you’ll see some of our favorite bits of PlayStation Eye fun on the PSN, designed to turn your TV into an eye-popping piece of interactive art that no one can ignore… more on those at launch!
Lastly, a great value-add you may not all know about is the EyeCreate Software. This will be available for FREE download on the PlayStation Store (yes! free! come get it!) and allows you to save, edit and share your PlayStation Eye videos, photos and audio clips – all through your PS3. We’ll have more on EyeCreate later this week, including some really fun examples of how cool EyeCreate movies can be from the depths of our QA grotto.
PlayStation Eye will be available as a stand-alone product starting October 23, for $39.99 at all major retailers. I’m sure there will be some questions, so I’ll try to monitor the comments here and provide info where I can.