PS3 launch: Is PS3 a sexy beast?

Monday 19 March 2007
You never quite get over seeing PS3 in the flesh for the first time. It's conspicuously large and instantly becomes the focal point of any room it's placed in. That's not to say that it always looks great, however. In its horizontal position it's a hard shape to love. The smaller base of the machine forms an invisible plinth that holds the curved body aloft, so what should be a smooth sexy curve never quite gels, what with its sheer height above the table top. PS3 looks... well... massive.

Things improve when you place it on end, however. From the right angle PS3 looks positively slender. The fat base section is now behind the smooth curve and you can kid yourself that it's much thinner than it actually is. The only problem with this viewpoint is that the word 'PlayStation 3' across the top appears to be slightly misaligned. If you were unable to see the entire surface from back edge through to disc-tray you'd swear it was too far forwards. Odd.

Perhaps more attention-grabbing than the size, however, is the superb, other-worldly finish of the machine. Sony call it 'Clear Black' and if that sounds like rubbish it's because there is no way to sensibly describe it. PS3 is mirror-shiny. All over. There's a single grade of plastic used throughout and while it appears black it is in fact clear - like the lenses of a particularly evasive pair of sunglasses. Hold it up to bright light and you can actually see PS3's innards. It's like they want you to know just how much technology they've managed to squeeze inside - you can see it crammed inside, desperately trying to burst out.

The blackness is accented with the famous chrome strips of the 60GB model (which, incidentally, is the only model that will be available at the European PS3 launch). Those of you expecting actual chrome will be disappointed to learn that the strips are plastic, though you can only tell if you give them a prod - likewise the frame around the disc slot. OK, it's unnecessary and pointlessly 'bling', but we like it all the same.