One of the biggest talking points about the PlayStation 3 has been its Blu-ray drive and how that will allow more gaming goodness on one disc. No one can deny that a Blu-ray disc can hold substantially more information than standard DVD, but what about the read speed of a Blu-ray drive?
One key difference is the way each disc is read–Blu-ray disc drives read information at the same speed regardless of where on the disc the information is located, while standard DVD disc drives vary the read speed based on how far the information is from the center of the disc. The different methods put Blu-ray at a staggering advantage in the future, but currently 1x and 2x Blu-ray drives trudge along compared to a 12x DVD drive, which gathers information at a rate of 8.2 – 16.5 megabytes per second (depending on the amount of data stored).
4x Blu-ray drives overcome 12x DVD drives by running a constant 18 MBps; however, a 4x Blu-ray drive is far too expensive for Sony to use in the PlayStation 3, and more likely gamers will get a 1x or 2x drive.