I had to drive 50 miles to a wally superstore before I got one - the last one - that was jammed into the kiosk storage area. It took two employees to figure out how to work the box free without breaking the glass door.
Unpacked it and set it up last night. It is really not so much a gaming machine as a home entertainment unit. Its build quality is definitely better than the 360. The piano gloss finish is more familiar to high end audio. It certainly looks great in the rack and fits in well with the lsis. The plastic dvd tray on the 360 looks and feels flimsy, as if it would snap off very easily. But the way the ps3 sucks in the bds is just cool. The feedback lights, touch panel buttons, etc. all function like a solid piece of quality audio equipment should. Although I would like to get a keyboard and a remote for it, navigating bds was smooth and very responsive with the gamepad. Nothing like the stories I've heard of stand-alone linux hd-dvd and blu-ray players. And the select key brings up real-time data transmission info on the blu-ray being played so you can actually see the bitrate for audio and video.
I watched superman returns last night. The PQ was excellent. Sharp and detailed. I was most impressed by how my eye could follow very detailed motion in the distance without loss of quality. Like the opening scene when krypton's sun collapses almost to a point then explodes or when lex luthor fires the krypton/crystal torpedo and it thuds into the ocean with a very distant but 3 dimensional splash. I only noticed one scene that had obvious artifacting on the blue wall of superman's hospital room. Not sure what caused it. I am running it on a sharp 45gx6u. This is a 1080p native panel that has an outboard box that accepts only 1080i. So I know there is some voodoo going on between the 1080i signal and the 1080p panel. It's possible to hook the source directly to the panel for full 1080p. But it requires some adapters so I haven't done it yet. Now that I've got the console, I've finally got the incentive though. Besides that one scene, the blu-ray otherwise was just stunning. Time to start building the library all over again....
What was really surprising was the audio quality. I don't have an hdmi capable receiver at the moment, so I was just watching with the dolby track via optical. And it was the best dolby track I've ever heard. It sounds like the best of the dts tracks I have on dvds. I certainly wasn't expecting an increase in audio quality like this since the ps3 doesn't have analog outs to get at the new hd audio formats without an hdmi pre/pro or receiver. But even dolby on blu-ray disk is standard at 640 kbit/s. That compares with 384-448 kbit/s for dvds. And the difference in sound quality is definitely there even for vanilla dolby. I can only imagine what the hd formats must sound like since they have bitrates that are much higher (all within the Mbit range).
Haven't even tried any gaming titles yet. And at this point, I'm not in a hurry to. Still working my way through some 360 titles anyways. This is the cheapest way to get into blu-ray at this point, half the price of stand-alone players. And from my first impressions, it's worth every penny as just an affordable blu-ray player. Keep having to remind myself that I need to pick up some games for it too!