PS1/2 PS1 reads backups but not original games

BSTCloud

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Hi,

I know this is a weird one. I have a 9002 PAL fat ps1, that can read backups. I bought it second handed and haven't been able to open it (have no tools right now at my disposal).
Thing is that the system absolutely ignores original games. Backups it reads easy peasy any time, any region, 0 issues and they work perfectly, but original games are a big nope.
I tried booting original games through import player, gameshark (both burned on cd's) and the launchers will load, the original games will not.

I was even able to load gameshark from import player and vice versa, but the second I insert an original disc on this grumpy old boy, he just stops giving a damn and doesn't care.

Any ideas on what it could be? As I say, right now I don't have the means to open it and take a look at what's inside, but maybe a modchip that does this is known. Maybe it's a known issue with the lens. I have no idea, I at least couldn't find ANYTHING on either google or this forum in general.
Originales game will take me to the "Please insert a playstation or music cd disc" if booted normally, and if done through import player or gameshark, it just won't load.

Thanks in advance!
 

KleinesSinchen

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I've read this once about the GameCube. Generally speaking pressed discs are better readable most oft the time… so this is strange. I've no idea what could cause this.

If you have an older original game that uses CDDA for background (Ridge Racer, Rayman 1, Tomb Raider 1 and a whole lot more) music try playing the audio by first starting the CD player application and then closing the drive. By playing the audio tracks (starting with track 2) you can at least somewhat make sure the laser is able to read the discs.

A thing you could try in case the audio plays is unlocking the drive with FreePSXBoot and/or Tonyhax and see if this makes any difference in booting originals.
 
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driverdis

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Hi,

I know this is a weird one. I have a 9002 PAL fat ps1, that can read backups. I bought it second handed and haven't been able to open it (have no tools right now at my disposal).
Thing is that the system absolutely ignores original games. Backups it reads easy peasy any time, any region, 0 issues and they work perfectly, but original games are a big nope.
I tried booting original games through import player, gameshark (both burned on cd's) and the launchers will load, the original games will not.

I was even able to load gameshark from import player and vice versa, but the second I insert an original disc on this grumpy old boy, he just stops giving a damn and doesn't care.

Any ideas on what it could be? As I say, right now I don't have the means to open it and take a look at what's inside, but maybe a modchip that does this is known. Maybe it's a known issue with the lens. I have no idea, I at least couldn't find ANYTHING on either google or this forum in general.
Originales game will take me to the "Please insert a playstation or music cd disc" if booted normally, and if done through import player or gameshark, it just won't load.

Thanks in advance!
I have an idea. Laser strength. If it is too high it will fail to read a disc. It is completely possible to have the laser pot too high and have it read backups but not originals as original discs need less power to read.

this is easy to miss for someone like the previous owner as they may never have used an original disc and have only copies which run 100% fine.

make a note of the original pot value and up it in 50ohm increments until originals read. Make sure to go up, not down in value as less is more when it comes to power.
 
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KleinesSinchen

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I have an idea. Laser strength. If it is too high it will fail to read a disc. It is completely possible to have the laser pot too high and have it read backups but not originals as original discs need less power to read.

this is easy to miss for someone like the previous owner as they may never have used an original disc and have only copies which run 100% fine.

make a note of the original pot value and up it in 50ohm increments until originals read. Make sure to go up, not down in value as less is more when it comes to power.
Might be the case. Might have also been the case in the similar GameCube problem above.
Personally I always try out everything software before trying to tweak the hardware.

What makes me believe the console can read something from the original discs is the "Please insert PlayStation CD" message. This message not only appears with burned copies on non-modchip consoles, but also whenever inserting a random data CD. It does not appear on complete failure to read (when doing nonsense like inserting the disc upside down or trying a DVD).

I still would recommend testing originals with CDDA, simple pressed audio CD as well as nocash unlock as first step; and trying laser tweaking as second step.
 
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You are gonna have to get some tools and open it up. There is a pot on the ribbon cable where it enters the optical drive, adjust that in tiny increments and test the original disc. I recommend taking a picture of its current position so you can at least set it back to where it will play backups again if you're not successful.

Here's a pic of where it is on my drive, it might be different for your model..

4zBSm0N.jpg
 

BSTCloud

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I haven't been able to come around the PS1 but thanks for the suggestions guys. With some luck next week I'll procure myself the tools to open this chunky boy and see what's inside, will check out your posts again and come back with the findings.
In the meantime, googling, I came across some insanely old mesasges on some spanish message boards (I'm talking 2001-2003 territory here, and spanish is my first language) about hacking back in the day, and a lot of people had similar issues with the PAL 9002 as well.

For the exact same diagnosis, 99% of the time it was that whoever modded the last chip in, either programmed an incorrect .hex into the PIC (didn't use the right version and it affects compatibility with original games), OR didn't solder every leg of the chip on the right points, OR the chip was installed correctly but one of the solders deprecated with time and should be revised.
It's very easy to imagine this being done on whatever neighbhorhood small store that closed 18 years ago by god knows who and its previous owner probably owned 0 original games (which was the 'usual' in Spain back in the day), so yeah, it's easy to see why this got unnoticed. The case is impeccable still.

Anyways, since I bought this system YEARS ago (7+) and things have changed so much since, there's way more modern alternatives to whatever technology this got used to modchip, so I purchased a MM3 and whatever this system has I'm replacing anyways, so will report that back as well.

I have another 5502 that I eventually want to mod Xstation and PS1 digital in, but that's a different story.
See you soon!
 
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driverdis

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I haven't been able to come around the PS1 but thanks for the suggestions guys. With some luck next week I'll procure myself the tools to open this chunky boy and see what's inside, will check out your posts again and come back with the findings.
In the meantime, googling, I came across some insanely old mesasges on some spanish message boards (I'm talking 2001-2003 territory here, and spanish is my first language) about hacking back in the day, and a lot of people had similar issues with the PAL 9002 as well.

For the exact same diagnosis, 99% of the time it was that whoever modded the last chip in, either programmed an incorrect .hex into the PIC (didn't use the right version and it affects compatibility with original games), OR didn't solder every leg of the chip on the right points, OR the chip was installed correctly but one of the solders deprecated with time and should be revised.
It's very easy to imagine this being done on whatever neighbhorhood small store that closed 18 years ago by god knows who and its previous owner probably owned 0 original games (which was the 'usual' in Spain back in the day), so yeah, it's easy to see why this got unnoticed. The case is impeccable still.

Anyways, since I bought this system YEARS ago (7+) and things have changed so much since, there's way more modern alternatives to whatever technology this got used to modchip, so I purchased a MM3 and whatever this system has I'm replacing anyways, so will report that back as well.

I have another 5502 that I eventually want to mod Xstation and PS1 digital in, but that's a different story.
See you soon!
since you are buying an MM3 anyway, remove the old modchip and see if it boots originals again.

I am definitely curious on that as I can’t seem to understand why originals won’t boot unless the license string is actually being sent by both the disc drive and modchip and the same time and ends as gibberish to the PS1. Since backups don’t have this, they would get the correct data. This is a theory as I don’t know for sure if that is what is going on.
 
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BSTCloud

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Surprise!
I didn't forget about this thread guys, things just took a while to get rolling because adult life pretty much :P
Okay so we opened the 9002 and this is what we found (imgur):
Green Joy-Con D-Pad Shells for Nintendo Switch

First off it was a PU-23 9002 kind of motherboard, and all things considered it was looking pretty clean and not used much I believe.
As you can see in the pictures it had an old 12C508/P PIC, I didn't find ANY information regarding this 04 HAM 9921 specifically in Google or in any 10y+ old modding tutorials, but looking at the soldering (just 4 pins) it's obvious this was an incredibly old modding work here from more than 15y ago I'd say.

I'm guessing that what I found out the other day is pretty much what was going on around here, they probably hardcoded whatever 9002.hex incomplete file on the PIC and they didn't ever check for original titles because the previous owner probably had none.

When we removed the PIC, the system behaved as normally (only PAL original games played out).
We then installed the MM3 as documented here https://quade.co/ps1-modchip-guide/mm3/pu-23/, and it worked out first try.
The system now plays backups of any region, and original games of any region. We tested with a NTSC-JAP Biohazard 2 (properly displays 60hz in full color and proper screen positioning), PAL Harry Potter 1, and some old ps1 backups from back in the day my friend still had.
Noted, the lens is impeccable, this system either hasn't been used much, or the lens was changed right before I picked it up, because loads everything in a snap. In Bio2 the audio clips of the characters talking played out pretty much seamlessly, we were impressed.

If you look closley you can see there was some kind of switch soldered to the chip, we were going to test what the actual hell it did but actually forgot to in the meantime.
It's obviously not super important because the system is running butter-smooth, but if anyone knows about this exact installation it would be great.
My guess is that it would've enabled or disabled the modchip usage.
 
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If you look closley you can see there was some kind of switch soldered to the chip, we were going to test what the actual hell it did but actually forgot to in the meantime.
It's obviously not super important because the system is running butter-smooth, but if anyone knows about this exact installation it would be great.
My guess is that it would've enabled or disabled the modchip usage.
Yes, to not trigger simple antimod-checks due to the modchip sending the license-data all the time, even when the disc-controller is not asked to do so.
 

driverdis

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Yes, to not trigger simple antimod-checks due to the modchip sending the license-data all the time, even when the disc-controller is not asked to do so.

that is odd for a PAL system. PAL systems cause AntiMod checks to be skipped so unlike an NTSC system it will never need to be switched off.
 
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