Saturday, November 7, 2009

Media Review - Netflix on the PS3

Movies on demand

Getting Started

So I got my disc yesterday in the mail. Came with the same speed as normal Netflix movies. The envelope was a little different to help keep people from sending back the disc.

I set out on getting provisions for my movie night.

With the proper provisions secured I put in the disc and was presented with the standard loading screen. After the disc loaded up, I had to take a code from the disc and entered using a computer to link the accounts. While entering that information I also ordered the second disc for my second PS3. In talking with Netflix, they are not placing any restrictions on the number of PS3s which you can stream on. You can request another disc when registering your current disc.

So with the code secured, the menu loaded up.


The picture quality is awesome. Even in SD the picture is far better than standard cable. Also, I have yet to see any streaming/buffering problems. All video playback has been smooth.


Like any other Netflix streaming the audio is Dolby Digital 2.0 sound. That said, it still sounds good.

Control Scheme

This leads me to the first place I wasn't impressed. This doesn't use the standard PS3 video controls. Irritating to say the least, I frankly expected forward and back to fast forward and rewind. Instead it goes into a paused mode where you can select the scene you want. Using L2/R2 rewind and fast forward work, but the interface is a little funky.

Additionally, hitting pause can take several seconds to pause the stream which is annoying.

Finally, using up while video is playing will take you back to the menu, saving your position. Quite clever if you ask me, so that earns a thumbs up.

Watching a Series

So here's another annoyance. Netflix will go to the next item in a series only when you run though to the end credits. You'd think if there was less than 3 minutes left when you exited playback the next show should be automatically selected.


Netflix doesn't put the latest releases up to stream on demand. I can't even get the latest X-Men movie. I can get them through the PS3 video store, though it'll cost me a lot more.


  • Video Quality - Superb
  • Audio Quality - OK (2 channel DD, No different than standard Netflix streaming)
  • Controls - Meh
  • Selection - So so (Missing new releases)

Overall Rating 7/10

Comparison with PlayOn

I've used play on for months. I've had streaming problems with Netflix and the audio isn't as good. That said, the control scheme is standard using PlayOn.

Other Items

Remember for ~$10/month you can get unlimited streaming + Blu-Ray discs.

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