Sony shows off new PS2

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Sony has showcased more than 3000 products for its retail partners at its second Experience More event at Fox Studios in Sydney.

Sony has showcased more than 3000 products for its retail partners at its second Experience More event at Fox Studios in Sydney. The event gave media and retailers the first look at a number of products including the new small form factor PS2.

Sony also debuted the HD1 music player, which it claims is the world's smallest portable audio device, at 1.8in long and a weight of 110g. The credit card sized silver unit has a 20GB hard disk with capacity for up to 13,000 songs.

Sony also showed off its first HDD/DVD recorder with 160GB of memory, the RDRHX900; its first 7 mega-pixel digital cameras and a 1080i High Definition consumer camcorder, the HDR-FXI handycam.

Sony also demonstrated its upcoming high end home cinema projector, the QUALIA 004. The high definition front projector will retail for $40,000, including "white glove" installation service from Sony, according to a spokesperson for the company.

The new PS2 console, which will be available in Australia from 29 October, has taken a massive cut in form factor, as well as adding an Ethernet port for online gaming.

While the other functions remain the same as the old PS2 console, the new unit is a quarter of the volume of the old console, weighs half as much, and has trimmed 5cm off its thickness, to be just 2.8cm wide.

While Sony's next generation PS3 console is thought to be more than a year away, Sony Computer Entertainment managing director for Australia and New Zealand, Michael Ephraim, signalled that Sony still expects to get a lot of mileage from the new form factor PS2.

"So far there are just over 1.25 million PS2s in Australia," said Ephraim. "We're forecasted to sell an additional 50 percent of PS2 consoles." Attaining its goal of a 2.5 million install base for PS2 would equal the install base of its PS1, which has now stopped production.

Showing off the new console to the Australian media for the first time, Ephraim said that the redesigned console would be supported by the release of a number of new games ahead of the peak Christmas season. They include Gran Turismo 4, Getaway: Black Monday, Singstar Party, Eyetoy Play 2 and Killzone.

Looking ahead, Ephraim confirmed that Sony's PlayStation Portable unit is on track to launch in Q1 next year. He added that the next generation PS3 console would support the Blu-Ray storage format, with a capacity of 57GB of data.

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