New PS3 SKU drops HD Blu-ray playback via component

A new series of PS3 is ready to hit the market. The CECH-3000 series may look identical to the current PS3 Slim, but it's actually lighter weight, draws less power, and will offer larger hard drives. It's not as monumental of a transformation as when the Slim was first introduced, but it's an upgrade nonetheless.

There is one odd caveat, however, one that's unlikely to affect most newcomers to the PS3 ecosystem.

The new PS3s must comply to the Advanced Access Content System, a standard for DRM which states HD video playback must be restricted to HDCP-compliant HDMI and DVI cables. So what does that mean? New PS3 systems being shipped to stores will not be able to play Blu-ray discs in HD over component cables.

Most modern TVs support multiple HDMI inputs, although owners of legacy televisions will be most affected. "PS3 continues to support component output for HD gaming and streaming content," a Sony representative told Ars Technica. So, if you're one of the few people that absolutely refuses to get rid of your late 90s HDTV, and hasn't purchased a PS3 yet, you might want to pick one up now, before the new models start replacing them.