10 Best PS3 Emulator for PC (Windows/macOS) 2021

Even though the PS5 is already out, some people are starting to yearn for the PS3 and all the games it introduced to the world. But rather than buying a brand new PS3 to play titles like Modern Warfare and Mass Effect 2, they have realized that they can just easily play their favorite PS3 games on a PC by downloading and installing an emulator.

But which PS3 emulator should they use?. There are so many options to choose from. If you are at a loss with regards to the best PS3 emulator for PC, give these emulators a chance:

Related: 4 Best PS2 Emulator for Android/Windows (2021)

List of Best PS3 Emulator for PC (Compatible with Windows/Mac)


1. RPCS3

This open-source emulator is free. It is also compatible with Linux and Windows systems. It can run over a thousand PS3 games. That is impressive when you consider the complexity of the PS3’s architecture. 

To install the emulator, you need 3GB of RAM, X86-64 (CPU), OpenGL 4.3 or higher, and the PlayStation 3 pup system software file. 

RPCS3 Download


  • It has over a thousand games
  • The system requirements are low
  • It works with Linux


  • It requires further debugging and refinement

ESX Emulator

2. ESX PS3

This emulator has a simple interface that is quite easy to navigate. People love it because ESX PS3 allows them to play games using native graphics. But the hardware requirements are higher than what you normally encounter. You need an Nvidia GTX 660 GP.

But this hurdle is worth it for people that want to play older games using the crystal-clear graphics that a high-end computer offers.



  • You can use native graphics
  • It supports a variety of PS3 titles
  • The emulator promises a smooth glitch-free performance


  • The hardware requirements are somewhat high
  • As of recent, the emulator has become unsafe. Gamers are being warned against using it.


3. Mednafen

This is a portable emulator with an intuitive user interface. You can customize the settings and remap the PS3 controls onto your keyboard. You also have the option of using a joystick. It isn’t limited to PS3 games. 

You can also use Mednafen to emulate platforms like the GameBoy, Sega Game Gear, and Neo Geo Pocket. 

Mednafen Download


  • It can emulate multiple consoles
  • You can customize your keyboard controls
  • Compatible with joysticks


  • It uses a command-line interface style


4. Bizhawk

This is a versatile emulator that supports hotkey mapping. Besides the PS3, you can use it to play Virtual Boy, Super Famicom, and Super Nintendo games. Even though it doesn’t enjoy the same popularity as emulators like Mednafen, the application delivers an excellent gaming experience. The user interface is simple and easy to navigate. 



  • It emulates multiple gaming consoles
  • You can customize your controls
  • The hardware requirements are not that high


  • You have to download the prereq installer to install bizhawk, which is inconvenient. You must also download the PlayStation BIOS

PlayStation now

5. PlayStation Now

This is a cloud-based subscription service. You can use it to play PS2, PS3, and PS4 games. But you have to pay for access. The service allows you to stream the games to your computer.

It is compatible with PlayStation (DualShock) and Xbox controllers. But the service is tricky because it requires a strong internet connection (5Mbps). 

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  • You can play games from multiple PlayStation consoles
  • You can use PlayStation and Xbox controllers
  • The hardware requirements are low


  • They don’t offer enough games to make their service enticing
  • You cannot use the service without high-speed internet

6. RetroArch

RetroArch is an incredible emulator that works on Windows, Mac, and Linux. You can also use it on iOS and Android devices. With RetroArch, you can play games from a multitude of consoles, including the Wii U, and PSP. You can find the emulator in the Google Play Store or Apple’s App Store. 



  • It has streaming and recording features
  • It supports multiple gaming platforms
  • It works on a variety of devices 


7. SNES9x

This emulator was developed over a period of three years. It was designed to allow gamers to play PS3 titles on Windows 7. But as the name already told you, the emulator can also play Super Famicom Nintendo games. In fact, it does a better job of running Super Famicom Nintendo games than PS3 games. 



  • It plays both PS3 and Super Famicon games
  • You have multiple versions to choose from depending on what you want to do. For instance, the SNES9x 1.52 version allows you to overclock the SuperFX chip. 
  • Free


  • The number of PS3 games you can play is small
  • The performance isn’t that impressive



This emulator stands out because it can play PSP games. That is a good thing because the PSP is compatible with PS2 and PS3 titles. Therefore, the emulator gives you access to PS3 games. The application has been known to lag.



  • It works on mobile devices
  • You can play PS2 and PSP games on the emulator
  • It works on older systems, including Windows Vista and XP


  • It has been known to lag


9. PSeMU3

This is an incredible application that can play PS1, PS2, and PS3 games. You can use the original Blue-ray discs if you want. The drag and drop feature makes the emulator very easy to use. The emulator is just 50MBs, which means that it doesn’t take up much space. 



  • Small and lightweight
  • It can play games from three different PlayStation Consoles
  • It can deliver 30FPS and 720p.


  • You need the BIOS files of the console you want to play to launch the emulator

10. CILS

This is an obscure emulator that many people will appreciate because it works on all versions of Windows, which is amazing. It will work on older computers without any major hiccups. It is flexible and user-friendly. 


  • It works on every version of windows
  • You can run it on older computers. It has low hardware requirements


  • The performance is not that impressive



Don’t let financial constraints prevent you from playing PS3 games. Just download and install one or more of the emulators above. They will allow you to recreate all the fun and excitement you once had on the PS3. 

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