Observations on PS3 Pricing

I just noticed something odd in the price of different Playstation 3 models: Amazon.com’s PS3 page has:

Playstation 3, 120 Gb: $299.99

Playstation 3, 250 Gb: $414.99

From this, we can work out the price per gigabyte: ($414.99 – $299.99) / (250 – 120) = $0.8846 $/Gb.

That’s not the odd part. Since I have some old Playstation 2 games, ideally I’d like a PS3 that’s backward-compatible with the PS2. According to Wikipedia (which can be relied on, here, since it’s a nerd topic), those are the 20 and 60 Gb models, as well as some 80 Gb ones.

Again from Amazon, we have:

Playstation 3, 20 Gb: $229.99

Since this has 100 Gb less than the 120 Gb model, we would expect it to cost 100 × $0.8846 less, or $211.53. But it costs $229.99, or $18.46 more. So that $18.46 must be the price of PS2 compatibility.

Now we get to the odd part:

Playstation 3, 60 Gb: $849.99

We would expect this to cost $299.99 (the price of a 120 Gb model), minus 60 × $0.8846 = $53.08 because it has 60 Gb less storage, plus $18.46 for PS2 copmatibility, for a total of $265.37. So why is the real cost over $500 higher?

All I can figure is that the 60 Gb disk is a lot bigger than a 20 Gb disk, leaving less free space inside the case. So the PS2 compatibility has to be built out of smaller components, which are vastly more expensive.

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