PSP buying guide for native play and system emulation

Discussion in 'PSP - Hacking & Homebrew' started by daphnis, Mar 6, 2017.

  1. daphnis
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    daphnis Member

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    I've followed several threads here when it comes to PSP emulation, and I'm really considering buying a used PSP on eBay to play NES, SNES, Game Boy, and PS1 games (in addition to native PSP titles). Based on these goals, which model or range of models would people recommend? Some users have said to avoid the 1000 series. But since I've never owned a PSP and don't know the various options out there, wanted to reach out to the community to get advise on which PSP I should look to buy used.
     


  2. cybrian

    cybrian Advanced Member

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    Any PSP can be hacked with a modification that it boots straight into now (that is, no need to do anything after turning it on, and no need to only put it into sleep mode), no matter what firmware it is on. The PSP-1000 series is lower specced, so you are right to avoid it. The 3000 series has a screen with significantly better color reproduction than the 1000 and 2000 but because of how it works (and possibly not being "biased" perfectly) at times it almost looks like it has scanlines, or an interlaced picture. This doesn't bother me at all, but some people preferred the 2000 series over it. The first three models (1000, 2000, and 3000) use a Memory Stick Pro Duo for primary storage, and you can get an adapter to use much less expensive MicroSD cards instead.

    And finally, the PSP Go — it probably will cost you more money, and I've been told that its controls are not quite as comfortable as the others (the screen slides up to reveal controls below it), but its screen is supposed to be better (though some people say it also has the "scanline" bias issue that the 3000 has), and you can play it with a Dual Shock 3 controller from a PS3 if you hook it up to your TV. The other PSP models can't do this. The PSP Go also has 16 GB of internal storage memory, but it uses M2/Memory Stick Micro cards, which are too small to fit into any sort of adapter, max out at 16 GB (I have a 32 GB MicroSD inside my PSP-3000 with an adapter), and are extremely expensive ($60 or so for 16 GB — a 16 GB MicroSD would cost you roughly a tenth of that).

    Personally I'd recommend the PSP-3000, but you may find the additional features of the PSP Go palatable.
     
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  3. Arm73

    Arm73 GBAtemp Addict

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    I still got a beautiful PSP 3000 with a great CFW ( forgot which one ) , but I absolutely cannot stand it as an emulation machine. The screen resolution is too big for old systems, but too small for a clean 2x upscaling. The result is a blurry mess ( at least for my taste ) and besides, most emulators haven't been updated in ages. You get a flawless PSX emulation, I give you that, but still the upscaling and the lack of R2/L2 sucks big time. There are clearly many better options out there, from dedicated emulation handhelds running android, or ever a retropie. I cannot comment on a PS Vita 'cause I've never held one, but I suppose the better screen and more buttons would solve most of the issues I have with the PSP.
     
  4. daphnis
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    daphnis Member

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    Can you explain what you mean here? Keep in mind I have no experience nor familiarity with a PSP at this time, but a lot with emulation in general.

    — Posts automatically merged - Please don't double post! —

    Are there models or editions in the 3000 line that are recommended or should be avoided? Again, no familiarity with any PSP models at this point, but eBay shows a variety of those available.
     
  5. migles

    migles Mei the sexiest bae

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    the screen is not a 4:3 ratio...
    it's not a common screen size... (for example gba is 240 × 160 pixels)
    so emulators will either run in a letterbox mode (also known as black borders), which sometimes the video is too small and there is a huge empty screen
    if you want to fill the screen it will not be a perfect x2 resolution so you have bluriness and stretched video,
    if you keep aspect ratio, you still get some bluriness\upscalled picture looking
    you can check on youtube or google for examples
     
    Last edited by migles, Mar 6, 2017
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  6. ScarletDreamz

    ScarletDreamz [Debug Mode]

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    Got with the E or 3000 model, better screen and weight.
    ANY PSP can be hacked as of now.

    You can use custom firmware pro 6.61, among any other CFW that exist for yoru PSP, so any PSP 3000 will do the job.
     
  7. migles

    migles Mei the sexiest bae

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    i would recomend to stay away from the E model (also known as psp street?)
    only one speaker, no wifi (which nowdays is not a great problem, but wifi is still nice, specially for local multiplayer, i do think some emulators support it...

    the psp 1000 is a heavy brick, 32MB of ram (all games are designed for 32MB anyway, the extra ram in latter models is only usefull for homebrew and to speed up loading times in UMD)
    the good things about the 1000 is you get thumbs rest behind the L\R buttons, and it has a IR port, which can be used as a tv remove lol...

    since the 2000 model they have 64 MB of ram (as explained above, doesn't really matter for games)
    a AV out port you can use a cable to connect to TV and play on the screen, (primitive switch console anyone?)

    the GO, has bluetooth which can be used to pair with a dual shock 3 (and i think a bluethoot headset as well? someone confirm this)
    i barely tried a GO, but people say it's very uncomfortable specially with big hands
     
  8. ScarletDreamz

    ScarletDreamz [Debug Mode]

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    can confirm that this is possible.
    It Is.
     
  9. cybrian

    cybrian Advanced Member

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    The PSP's screen resolution is 480 pixels wide by 272 pixels tall, which is 16:9 widescreen. Most systems up to and including the N64 (which you won't be able to emulate well on the PSP, so really most systems that you'd be able to emulate on it) primarily output no more than 320 pixels wide by 240 pixels tall. If you display the picture from an emulator at 1x, unstretched, it won't fill the screen — not even the top and bottom, as theres an extra 32 vertical pixels — so it'll be "windowboxed," which is a combination of both letterboxed (think viewing a widescreen movie on an old mostly-square TV), as well as column boxed (imagine the opposite, viewing an older TV show on a widescreen TV). In other words, you'll have black borders around the edges. And it really doesn't look horrible, but it definitely doesn't look great, either. Not to mention old TV screens, which older consoles and their games are designed for, have pixels that are actually not square! They're slightly wider than tall, where each pixel is 1.125 times wider than it is tall. So the screen actually should be stretched horizontally very slightly, but that means that (depending on the scaling algorithm) the likely result will be that the entire screen is rather blurry, as there's no possible way for more than one out of every 9 of the horizontal pixels to line up with the geometry of the screen. In other words, it won't look great.

    The 3000 line is all pretty much the same. It's worth mentioning that the black ones show scratches and fingerprints very, very well, except for the Monster Hunter special edition version which is matte black instead of glossy. (I was tempted to get that model even having never played a Monster Hunter game, but being a limited edition color it was more than I wanted to spend on a PSP). The silver model actually is matte, although it's painted so it will still show scratches. The white model might be your best bet if you don't mind it looking like you're playing a PSWii, although I'm perfectly happy with the black model I have. Other than the colors there's no discernible difference between different PSP's in the 3000 series.


    This also. Don't get the PSP E-1000. Another big issue with it is that the battery isn't user replaceable and it doesn't last very long brand new. Couple that with the fact that any PSP E-1000 you can find is going to be years old at this point and you can expect the battery life to be a joke that you can't fix (easily, anyway).

    I don't think the original 1000 is really worth it, because the battery life isn't great and it weighs so much. Not to mention OP mentioned emulators, which means homebrew.

    EDIT: another thing really worth mentioning is that the only SNES emulators for any PSP consoles rely on a number of hacks to run fast enough to be playable. This means they don't run well. Don't even try to play the SNES version of Yoshi's Island on a PSP without choosing between either graphical glitches, an unplayable framerate, or both.
     
    Last edited by cybrian, Mar 6, 2017
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  10. migles

    migles Mei the sexiest bae

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    hey OP, keep in mind the E-1000 is a new last edition model...
    it's not related to the 1000 model... (very similair names don't confuse them)
     
  11. cybrian

    cybrian Advanced Member

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    I'm not confusing them, I'm recommending against either one. The E-1000 was the last edition model, but it was only sold in Europe (as far as I'm aware, although also as far as I'm aware and certainly with CFW the PSP is region free), was sold as an inexpensive, gimped model to help take the rest of the UMD's off store shelves, was intentionally designed to not be able to compete with the PSP Go, and was discontinued 3 years ago. Chinese companies still make batteries for the previous model PSPs, so getting a PSP E1000 is choosing to stick with a minimum 3-year-old battery on a gimped system, when you can get a brand new battery for the other models and they have WiFi, amongst other things that the gimped model doesn't have.
     
    Last edited by cybrian, Mar 6, 2017
  12. ScarletDreamz

    ScarletDreamz [Debug Mode]

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    Note that the first 2 words.

    "HEY OP"
     
  13. daphnis
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    daphnis Member

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    Thanks to you three for those statements, I understand all of it. It seems the 3000 series is probably going to be the best bet. When buying a used 3000 system, are there things to look out for or go towards? I'm thinking, primarily, of accessories but also things like condition, age, battery model if third-party, etc? Since you all are probably very familiar with this device and its strengths and weaknesses, are there questions I should be asking of a potential seller when choosing a system that might hone in on some faults or health issues? Some examples that come to mind which may or may not be relevant in this case are: "Does the LCD have issues on X side?"; "Are any of the directional buttons unresponsive in position X?"; "Is the unit loose or shaky on side X?". I'm asking, essentially, for some insider tips when selecting a system that may help avoid some pitfalls learned by long-time PSP users, tips which only an owner and user would know and understand.
     
  14. ScarletDreamz

    ScarletDreamz [Debug Mode]

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    Its basically like buying any console, if you are getting one from ebay, you still have ebay protect on your side.

    Normally L and R get wear out, but thats a common issue on all consoles, just make sure the console its in good condition when buying it, no dead pixels, no clicking noises,the analog stick works, if you are planning on going original, that the UMD drive works. among others.
     
  15. terns21

    terns21 GBAtemp Regular

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    Forget the 1000 (heavy), E-1000 (crap) or the Go (small screen), I have both the 2000 and 3000 model. Don't like the scan lines of the 3000, prefered the natural look of the games on the 2000. For the GBA emulator try the latest versions of gpSP and TempBGA4PSP, for Snes the latest version of s9xTYLmecm_mod, for GBA/GBC try MasterBoy and for the NES try NesterJ.
     
  16. daphnis
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    daphnis Member

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    It seems even IGN agrees with you. Maybe I'll look for a 2000 instead.
     
  17. terns21

    terns21 GBAtemp Regular

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    The screen is vibrant but the scan lines is distracting! go for the 2000, you can never go wrong
     
  18. Daeru

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    With the right snes emulator you don't need to make any concessions to the graphics. Except for only a handful of games that used an fx chip in the game cartridge.
    Also in my opinion the psp scales retro games just fine.. i always increase the size of the image so i just have black borders on the left and right side and the games look great.

    I would go for the 3000. The colours look fantastic and the scanlines are only noticable on some fast moving games, but they dont bother me. A nice little extra psp 3000 exclusive feature is the ability to hook it up to a crt tv and play ps1 games full screen perfectly emulated.

    If you buy it second hand check if the battery has not expanded. The battery cover should fit without pressure.
    Also i have bought a psp where the color white is off on the edges of the screen. It looks more greyish.
    Other than that I never had any problems with them.
     
    Last edited by Daeru, Mar 9, 2017
  19. terns21

    terns21 GBAtemp Regular

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    2000 models can also do this.
     
  20. Daeru

    Daeru Member

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    No they can't output an interlaced signal for games, which is necessarily for a crt tv.