Since its launch last November, Sony's latest gaming platform has given early adopters trouble when attempting to play certain titles in 1080i/p. The console did not automatically upscale its video output to desired resolutions; it was up to either the game software to support these resolutions natively or the internal scalers of users' HDTVs. This forced many people, developers and owners alike, to question the very existence of scaling hardware in the PlayStation 3.
Worse, it created a sour taste in the mouths of owners of older CRT-based HDTV sets, many of which are not capable of accepting a 720p signal at all, and thus only capable of displaying 480i/p and 1080i video signals. If they wanted to run their games in HD resolution, the solution for these disgruntled owners until now was to hope that developers would release their games with 1080i/p support --not a walk in the park for the developer-- or, simply, to buy a new HDTV. As one can imagine, the latter was not the most well-received solution in the history of CE devices.
The key words in that last paragraph would be "until now," because with the latest PlayStation 3 software development kit (SDK) update, Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. (SCEI) has finally exposed part of the built-in hardware scaler to developers.
Will this mean that most, if not all, future games will support output at 1080p/i resolutions? Moreover --and this is the question that owners of 1080i-only CRT HDTVs crave to see answered--does this mean that current PS3 games may eventually support the native HD resolution of their televisions? Well, the answer requires some good old-fashioned explanation. Read on for more info...