The debate that has cursed the minds of all newbies of next-gen console purchasing - Playstation 3 or Xbox 360?
Before making up your mind, however, you need to consider what type of gamer you are, and what you want from your console:
-If pure quality of gaming is your thing, the 360 has got to be the best choice with its array of incredible titles and intense playability, and graphics that, from my experiences, better those of the ps3.
-If you want more than a gaming console, go for the playstation; it is a very low price for a good quality blu-ray disc player and has plenty of media devices that come in handy when entertaining.
I have owned both consoles and can safely say that the 360 is the better machine IF it doesn't break down. Mine always worked fine and Microsoft seem to have addressed this problem with their most recent consoles, but be weary of old premium consoles still on shelves.
You have the option of buying the accessories, thus making it the more affordable choice if you want it to be, whereas the ps3 comes in one complete package for one price - maybe I don't want to have wireless internet access, and prefer my ethernet cable?
Although the 360 controller requires batteries or the purchase of an additional charger pack, I think it's the better of the two; the ps3 controller is more convenient but really reduces the playability of games.
The deciding factor for me, other than quality of games and sheer enjoyment gained, is the ease of use - the ps3 took at least 20 mins to set up, after downloads that are required before you can do anything (annoying when all I want to do is play). When I bought the 360 I could play out of the box, and wanted to carry on throughout the night, which wasn't the case when I received my ps3.
The reason for 4 stars is that it is the superior of the next-gen consoles, but could do with some work. The games are far better for the 360 (Halo 3 and Gears of War to name just two), and most big titles due for release are multi-formatted anyway.
So now it's up to you - If I had the choice again I wouldn't buy a Playstation; and if Microsoft can sort out the console crashing problem and change a few things (no batteries in the controller/noise from cooling fan etc.) it would be a formidable choice. But as I say, it's your choice and maybe the ps3 will suit you better, it depends what you want from it I suppose.
Hopefully this has been of some help to you...