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PS3 Gets 500 Gigabyte Hard Drive

Third party set to release first officially licensed external drive, in anticipation of upcoming DVR release.

 

PC hardware maker Buffalo is about to take new steps in official PlayStation licensing. The company announced today two external hard drives that have been granted official recognition from Sony. According to Buffalo, this is the first time Sony has granted licensing to hard drive peripherals, a move that comes in anticipation of March's release of PS3's "Torne" digital video recorder kit.

Both drives have 500GB capacity and connect to the PS3 via an included USB 2.0 cable. The ¥14,800 Piano Black HD-AV500U2/SC sits horizontally and has a meter on its front showing remaining space. The ¥11,800 Black HD-CL500U2/SC stands vertically but lacks the meter.

As with any licensed peripheral, official licensing here means that the devices meet certain qualifications stipulated by Sony. They're both pre-formatted in a FAT32 format, allowing for immediate connection to the PS3. In addition to being used as an external recording device for Torne, the drives can also be used for backup and restore of the PS3's internal hard drive, and for saving and playback of videos, pictures and music.

Of course, the PS3 is technically compatible with general external hard drives, so it's unclear if official licensing carries any real merit here.

Buffalo's neat little diagram showing how it's done.

In its statement announcing the hard drives today, Buffalo mentioned a couple of additional details about Torne. The device allows up to eight external hard drives to be registered. At most four external drives can be connected simultaneously.

The two Buffalo drives will be released some time next month. You can see full specs in Buffalo's press release.

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