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Thread: Are all SCPH-100xs time bombs?

  1. #1
    Raging in the Streets Blades's Avatar
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    Default Are all SCPH-100xs time bombs?

    I still have a SCPH-1001 PSX. Seems to work ok, though I never really used it much. Iíve read about the design flaw with the laser rails. Has anyone experienced this, and remembers anything extenuating about it? For example, was the PSX used next to a source of heat etc.

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    Road Rasher ironnick23's Avatar
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    I have the 1001 and the psx with the led screen, both work great and Iíve taken them on roadtrips and all over. Iíve had a fat ps2 die on me for no apparent reason (I blame my little brother) and every single one of my ps4 controllers have failed over time.

    Iíve heard some people having to run the ps1 console upside down to get it running.

    Honestly the only preemptive thing I can think of is giving it a good internal cleaning and get rid of any dust. Even if the manufacturing is quite poor, thereís still a possibility you got one of the good ones

  3. #3
    Raging in the Streets Blades's Avatar
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    I guess so. Iíve never had problems with it. If the internet is to be believed, excess heat deforms the plastic rail making the laser sit at an angle (like your JVC Sega CD IIRC). I guess Iíll keep it for now and see what happens.

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    Road Rasher ironnick23's Avatar
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    Yeah thatís basically what happened on my scd. Adding that metal rail has been working great

    According to here:
    psxplanetcodes.tripod.com/repair.htm

    Our models have metal components on the laser rail. Doesnít look terribly hard to replace lol. Maybe someone whoís had this issue can chime in?

    Btw what game are you playing on it?

  5. #5
    Raging in the Streets Blades's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ironnick23 View Post
    Yeah thatís basically what happened on my scd. Adding that metal rail has been working great

    According to here:
    psxplanetcodes.tripod.com/repair.htm

    Our models have metal components on the laser rail. Doesnít look terribly hard to replace lol. Maybe someone whoís had this issue can chime in?

    Btw what game are you playing on it?
    There are no metal components there, did you mean plastic? The guy on the page did the same thing you did.

    I barely use it, which is why it's survived this long I guess. Never more than an hour, and I usually play a PSX game every 2 or 3 years lol.

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    Road Rasher ironnick23's Avatar
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    Wow no kidding, I only glanced at the page thinking he was swapping parts. I wish I found this when I was pulling my hair out fixing my game

    Iíve had my first psx since launch day, and spent many hours playing rpgs and the occasional fighting game. Well, anything I could get my hands on really. Been meaning to pick up a scart cable!

  7. #7
    Raging in the Streets Blades's Avatar
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    Wow! I guess not all of them are time bombs. Mine does have the later PU-8 motherboard (assembled in late '96). The really early ones were PU-7 (while also being marked SCPH-1001) with the gradient problems, maybe those are the ones more susceptible to this problem. At launch in the U.S., there was about a 50/50 split between PU-8 and PU-7 apparently.

    Is yours a US model or Euro? US I would guess since you said 1001. Btw any recs for fun PSX games? lol

    Anyone else with a launch PSX?

  8. #8
    Road Rasher ironnick23's Avatar
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    US. I picked it up the first day it was on shelves along with FFVII. Thereís a Gundam fighting game thatís excellent, the Crash Bandicoot series, FF Tactics... resident evil and parasite eve. I loved Megaman8! Iím sure thereís plenty Iím missing, and now Iím going to have to break that all out haha.

    This is the first Iím hearing of a gradient problem with early models, I never noticed something like it on my old tube tv or the lcd attachment screen

  9. #9
    Raging in the Streets Blades's Avatar
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    Here's a video. This only affects the very very early models before Sony changed from the PU-7 board to the PU-8 in late '95 (while still calling it SCPH-100x).


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    Wildside Expert vexatious's Avatar
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    Not time bombs but cd performance is a known issue on first revisions, but IMO it's ironically not a problem. Basically the machine is reliable and consistent despite the poor disc access, and the power supply is fine. If this wasn't true, it'd had problems gradually escalating over time with age, but this is an issue from the factory.

    Only problem seems to be focus and tracking poorly adjusted from factory. Makes sense since it was one of the first slim style x2 cd-drives to read a very odd security track. Unfortunately the slim style cd assembly doesn't have provisions for tracking/focus adjustment. Only remedy is to deliberately disassemble machine and offset the slide with physical material. It's difficult and irritating.

    Known method to work is cutting a aluminum pop can, sanding, flattening and properly adhering result to the rail with some kind of glue.

    A unrecommended and somewhat popular dirty hack is raising gain to laser through the variable resistor using small philips screwdriver. This is only recommended if intending to calibrate it for using cdrws. But reading cdrws requires the variable resistor to be replaced and/or modified with a externally accessed one since disc swapping from cdr, cdrws and factory cds requires different gains for each disc.

    Cool thing about first revisions is the multiple a/v outputs. Makes capturing speedruns to computer much better since you can play from rca jacks and send second A/V out to capture hardware. Speedrunning and/or playing from capture hardware usually doesn't work out or has too many problems (eg input lag and framedrops).
    Last edited by vexatious; 12-17-2018 at 07:27 AM.

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    AKA Mister Xiado Master of Shinobi Raijin Z's Avatar
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    Determine exactly which laser assembly your PSX uses, and buy a few replacements online. Normally these come from warehouses used to refurbish systems, or are made in one of the billion component factories in China. If the system conks out after about 7 years of play, or 20 years of periodic use, two replacements will last the rest of your life. Cranking the potentiometer up is just like squeezing the last of the toothpaste out of the tube.
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  12. #12
    Raging in the Streets Blades's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raijin Z View Post
    Determine exactly which laser assembly your PSX uses, and buy a few replacements online. Normally these come from warehouses used to refurbish systems, or are made in one of the billion component factories in China. If the system conks out after about 7 years of play, or 20 years of periodic use, two replacements will last the rest of your life. Cranking the potentiometer up is just like squeezing the last of the toothpaste out of the tube.
    Lasers almost never die. Do you have an oscilloscope? Because you need one and the service manual to calibrate the Chinese replacements, that is if they even work at all. Getting a new laser is bad advice, the old laser is almost always functional. Messing with the gain knob will kill a laser.

    The only replacement these days is the KSM-440-BAM and I've heard they have issues because of inconsistencies in gain and bias between the motherboards.

    I've never had a '90s era laser that didn't come back to life after a cleaning, lubrication, and if necessary calibration. In this case, all the assembly needs is a thin piece of floppy disc-like metal.
    Last edited by Blades; 12-17-2018 at 09:33 AM.

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    AKA Mister Xiado Master of Shinobi Raijin Z's Avatar
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    And I've never seen an optical drive that was failing to read pristine media be restored with lubrication, if anecdotal testimony is all that matters. I used white lithium grease to lubricate everything that slid or rode on tracks in my Goldstar 3DO, and gun oil for everything that turned (that wasn't touching a belt, naturally), and it did nothing to restore its ability to read optical media. One lump of steel and glass from China (and about six years of dragging my feet) later, it's right as rain, and the part I replaced wasn't the mechanism that moved the laser assembly. Laser diodes have a practical lifetime of about 5-10k hours. A PlayStation being used by multiple people while it was new would go though much of its lifespan in its first two years, never mind any mechanical degradation.

    tl;dr - If it was mainly mechanical issues that caused systems to fail to read, and lubrication didn't fix what replacing a diode & lens assembly did, am I a wizard?
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    Outrunner Eep386's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blades View Post
    Lasers almost never die.
    My two very dead JVC Optima-6 optical pickups would like to have a word with you on that.
    To be fair the drive mechanics themselves are usually reasonably reliable (unless they're made by an outfit like Torisan) despite their frightening high part counts, but the lasers/optical pickups of certain drives seem to be made strictly by the lowest bidder.

    Despite my grousing about JVC's awful pickups, the mechanisms themselves seem to be reasonably quality - my two mechanisms survived my bumbling 2002 self's many attempts to work around what were ultimately their dead and dying pickups. A couple of new pickups and some liberal application of Labelle grease after, they purr like kittens.
    Last edited by Eep386; 12-17-2018 at 03:49 PM. Reason: cant count lol

  15. #15
    Raging in the Streets Blades's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eep386 View Post
    My two very dead JVC Optima-6 optical pickups would like to have a word with you on that.
    To be fair the drive mechanics themselves are usually reasonably reliable (unless they're made by an outfit like Torisan) despite their frightening high part counts, but the lasers/optical pickups of certain drives seem to be made strictly by the lowest bidder.

    Despite my grousing about JVC's awful pickups, the mechanisms themselves seem to be reasonably quality - my two mechanisms survived my bumbling 2002 self's many attempts to work around what were ultimately their dead and dying pickups. A couple of new pickups and some liberal application of Labelle grease after, they purr like kittens.
    Of all the pickups that donít die, JVCs die the least.

    Send me the dead Optimas please.

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