Tutorial The Ultimate PS3 Repair Guide, YLOD Repair, Replacing the Nec Tokin Caps, Delid, Syscon Diagnoses

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After further Research Nec Tokin caps are no longer generally known for causing YLOD failing. It’s unfortunately more complicated that just the caps, you probably can still go on with the guide, but using the Syscon tool, is the best way to diagnose your PS3 as to what’s really at fault.

https://www.psx-place.com/threads/f...syscon-first-steps-and-error-reporting.30100/


This is a DIY guide i do not take responsibility for any damage to your system. If you feel like your not up to the task. Here is a seller that provides a service. If you know there are anymore service providers. Let me know so i can add them to the list.

UK
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/PLAYSTAT...025150?hash=item1a994bb47e:g:jw8AAOSwmyZfhD~b


https://www.consolewizard.co.uk/ps3...c-tokin-capacitor-delid-life-extender-upgrade


US
Delidding Service
https://www.ebay.com/itm/154308775525?hash=item23ed850e65:g:HH4AAOSw-2ZgEhQ0


Replacement caps
https://www.ebay.com/itm/294167131559?hash=item447dba35a7:g:F~UAAOSwFnJgRU0a

PS3 Repair Disclaimer:

Be aware that this is the Yellow Light of Death fix for the Sony PlayStation 3. With the PS3, many of the YLOD issues are caused by bad Nec Tokin capacitors. And as long as the system hasn’t been messed around with. A Green Light of Death or displaying green artifacts means you will need the RSX GPU chip or the motherboard replaced. This 60gb Phat PS3 has a 40nm RSX which is from a Slim. Makes for an interesting read: https://www.psx-place.com/threads/frankenstein-phat-ps3-cecha-with-40nm-rsx.28069/

The same can be said about Xbox 360’s Red Ring of Death. Which is known for its overheating GPU chip. The thin motherboard on the Xbox 360 flexes under heat and causes even more damage. Where as the PCB of the PS3 is much thicker. With the 360. It’s best to go for the later revision Xbox 360’s Falcon, Jasper, Slim, E. Check out this post about Xbox 360s.
https://www.reddit.com/r/xbox360/co...urce=share&utm_medium=ios_app&utm_name=iossmf

Also Never fall for any of the lies roaming around the internet. Oven fixes, towel fixes heat gun fix, reballing is going to cause more damage than good, due to excessive heat and is not fixing the root cause. The solder underneath the chip is not at fault.

Note:
You will need advanced soldering skills and equipment to be able to pull off this repair. This only applies to the Phat and the earlier Slim models of the PS3. The later Slims and the Super Slim already have Tantalum capacitors and the Super Slim cannot be Dellided as the IHS is soldered on. Replacing the paste is more than enough to improve cooling on the Super Slim. A great option if you don’t have the skills to repair a Phat. You can always go with the PS3 Super Slim as well as the very common PS2 Slim, which was discontinued in 2013.

Other Guides:
Soldering Tips and getting started
https://gbatemp.net/posts/9234898/

Console Repair Guide:
https://gbatemp.net/posts/9234528/

Console Cooling Guide:
https://gbatemp.net/threads/ultimat...4-thermal-right-pico-psu.588981/#post-9483245

Introduction:
Hi, i decided to upgrade the NEC Tokin capacitors in my working Backwards Compatible NTSC J PS3 CECHA12 console. That i imported from Japan, not only does this PS3 play PS1 games natively, but it can also play PS2 games flawlessly due to the hardware of the PS1/PS2 being included. The Phat PS3 is an easy system to softmod which allows for region-free support. The use of emulators and other applications like Webman, which allows for the ability to back up your games and play them off the harddrive putting less wear on the BluRay Drive, a temperature monitor, as well the ability to increase the fan speed. I also replaced the old 60gb hard drive with an SSD. This should improve load times. As well as a Delid to replace the old thermal paste with Arctic MX4 underneath the IHS or something like Thermal Right which can last just as long, with a performance rating of 14.3 W/Mk vs 8.5 W/Mk with Arctic MX4. Thermal Right also sells 1.5 and 2mm thermal pads with a performance rating of 12.5 W/Mk. If you want to replace the old thermal pads aswell. Thermal Grizzly isn’t to far behind either. Delidding is very difficult to do and one little slip or a scratch that is deep enough can be the end of your PS3, unless the trace is repairable. I recommend practicing on an old CPU or the cheaper 80gb PS3.

The true cause of the Yellow Light of Death is the failing NEC Tokin capacitors. All of the other repairs such as Reballing, Heatgun/Oven fix are all lies. With the PS3, all your really doing is applying heat to the NEC TOKIN capacitors making it work temporarily. Louis Rossman goes into further detail. It’s either a dead chip cause of GLOD. Another fault of the YLOD utilizing the Syscon Diagnoses. Other components can be at fault, such as a failing HDMI ic chip. If Nec Tokin repair doesn’t fix the YLOD and there is no deep scratch from delidding. Then use the Syscon tool to diagnose what the other fault can be. This link goes more into detail with this method https://www.psx-place.com/threads/f...syscon-first-steps-and-error-reporting.30100/

.

Tantalum caps can further be proven in later Slim models like the PS3 Super Slim, which has Tantalum capacitors rather than the NEC Tokins. For the PS3 Phat and early Slim models. I recommend using 32x 330uf Tantalum Capacitors and 470uf for the Phat models.

Guide:
The original tutorial is here: https://www.psx-place.com/threads/tutorial-nec-tokin-capacitors-replacement-ylod-fix.25260/


Not a tutorial but an interesting video


Replacing the Nec Tokin capacitors:
What i’m going to do is open this up and replace those NEC TOKIN capacitors with x32 Kemet Branded 470uf 6.3v Tantalum Capacitors. Which i purchased for £50, from Mouser and some thick well-insulated Kynar wire such as guitar wire to connect the plus rails. I do not recommend eBay when shopping for caps and thermal paste, and even soldering equipment like solder wire since there are a lot of fakes being sold on eBay. I recommend verifying before purchasing on eBay just to be sure. I use trusted electronic parts sites like DigiKey, Mouser, Farnell etc, and Amazon. Brands like Kemet, Panasonic, AVX are very good and should last a very long time. This article gives you the necessary info to spot a fake capacitor: https://www.electronicproducts.com/how-to-spot-counterfeit-passive-components/#:~:text=A well-known manufacturer of,embedded within a single housing.

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I started with the removal of the NEC TOKIN caps. The only way to remove this is to pick it apart with precision. With tools like a paint knife and a craft knife. Update: I hear removing the casing off the Nec Tokin caps and then using your rework station, desolders the caps. I have yet to try this on another PS3.

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Be very careful when working on the motherboard. Otherwise, you can accidentally break off some of those small components and scratch a trace. Like this tiny capacitor which i had to solder back on. They’re very easy to lose.
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I then desoldered the leftover parts from the Tokin caps.
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Do not recommend scraping the paint off.
Now the pads are ready for the new caps. For some reason, i thought this would make my job easier but it didn’t. I took rubbing with a Fiber Glass pen too far. And did not make my soldering easier. I ended up installing the caps diagonally.

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I recommend installing it like this. My method was more time-consuming.

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The end result. If your system doesn't work. Or some games cause issues. You will have to double-check for any loose solder joints. Make sure to use high-quality low melting point solder like Weller, Kester etc.
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Other riskless ways to improve cooling
Other than Dellidding another way to improve cooling is to use an Eraser/thick thermal pad on the Cell of the top side of the motherboard to dissipate the extra heat eliminating the need for Dellidding the Cell. Don’t know how well it performs. Let me know if this method works. Here is the guide:https://forum.devchroma.nl/index.php?topic=199.0

Another way is to replace the heatsink 15 blade fan with a 19 blade fan. There is also the cooler and more power-efficient CECHG PSU for the 40gb PS3, an APS 227 PSU for the 60gb PS3 or a Power Brick mod to your PS3 bringing a PSU outside of the PS3 which can reduce heat. People use PC PSU's which looks awful. This person instead used a readily available Dell Power Brick that's the same size as a laptop charger. And since there is extra space available after doing the mod. You will be able to put a 120mm fan in its place to improve airflow. Stay away from ventilation/case mods as they will disrupt the flow of air and will make overall cooling even worse. There is a reason Sony designed the PS3 this way. PSU Guide: https://www.psx-place.com/threads/powering-launch-ps3-w-external-power-brick-d220p.21818/

Dellidding: Always use a Peasize amount thermal paste, not too much not too little.
Delidding guide (NOTE VERY RISKY). Never try to force in your tool. If if it’s not thin enough to slide underneath the ihs then don’t bother, you will just scratch the chips. Be gentle, plan ahead and get the knife underneath the ihs. It should almost be effortless. Tools i recommend. Paint knife, 32 Gauge Knife, or a Fishing Wire/LCD Separator wire. Which i hear is even better for removing the IHS. I also highly recommend practicing on an old cheap CPU or an 80gb model PS3. Experience really does make a huge difference. Especially if you can manually Delid a Desktop CPU which is even more difficult than the PS3. And there are many dirt-cheap CPU’s out there for you to practice on. I use this technique for Delidding. Make sure it goes in and not all the way in. But just enough to cut the adhesive, with little to no effort. It is supposed to slide in like cutting butter. And be aware that the paint knife is not a one fits all solution. Other systems may require thinner tools like lcd separator wire and something like the 32 Gauge knife which comes in many different sizes.



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Since the Paint Knife is too thick. I had to trim it down with a file.

4 - OBgIvJt.jpg

I also bent my paint knife. But whether you prefer it bent or not. Is up to you. I recommending watching the videos, with which technique is more fitting for you.
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I started with the RSX GPU Chip and used my rework station to soften the adhesive.
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Pushing upwards away from the PCB, and not too far in, away from the dye with a dental tool, as well as heating up the IHS on the RSX with a rework station. Eventually, it popped off with little to no effort.
8 - ZXjlqdU.jpg

Now for the most difficult part which is the CELL CPU. But i made a mistake by trying to cram it in through the corner at the bottom side and ended up scratching 2 traces on the CELL. Remember to never rush this. Take your time, be very careful and it should slide in without scratching the PCB with little to no effort. I may be repairing those damaged traces which won’t be easy. I highly recommend starting from the top corners. Since it’s easier to slide the knife into. The bottom side has no traces but unfortunately. It is inaccessible due to some of the components being in the way. Overall don't rush this and never force it in.

10 - dTO8PDv.jpg

The temps on my A012 Unit Delidded with MX4, after an hour of gameplay in Skyrim.Set up in my bedroom underneath my tv. Not much ventilation and space in UK homes and it would be roughly around 4 Degrees Celsius more on 37% fan speed which is much quieter. It would run cooler if i went with Thermal Grizzly/Thermal Right Paste and Pads.
np8rjq6ww4p51.jpg


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VashTS

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i can confirm - i had a ylod phat boi, replaced the capacitors and it actually worked. the job was a little tedious but not horrible. removal sucked.

i had 2 more to attempt but sadly had to trash them as i moved across the country and didn't want to keep them.
 
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iVirtualPlays

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i can confirm - i had a ylod phat boi, replaced the capacitors and it actually worked. the job was a little tedious but not horrible. removal sucked.

i had 2 more to attempt but sadly had to trash them as i moved across the country and didn't want to keep them.

Yes, removing does suck but there is another method that doesn't involve a knife. Just remove the cover from the NEC TOKIN and
then from what i hear the rework station should do the rest. Sad to hear about those 2 units. We should do our best to preserve a system like this. I don't think Sony will make another system like this. With hardware-level backwards compatibility.
 

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Update to the Delid i recommend gently sliding the paint knife underneath the corners or the top of the Cell as it is much easier to do then the bottom side due to caps being in the way. Also if you just want to get it working temporarily maybe for testing purposes you can try heating up the Nec Tokin capacitors with some flux and a rework station.
 

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I really ought to get round to doing this. I have a phat with delided gpu (no cpu delid cause I'd fuck up and the ihs is air tight so the paste ain't drying anytiem soon.) Which is unfortunatly rlod.
 
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I really ought to get round to doing this. I have a phat with delided gpu (no cpu delid cause I'd fuck up and the ihs is air tight so the paste ain't drying anytiem soon.) Which is unfortunatly rlod.
Delidding is optional. If you want to practice. Practice on some old cheap CPU or an 80gb PS3. But replacing the NEC Tokin caps is necessary.
 

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Wow, this post reached 10K views. Thanks for reading my post people. It’s time we expose those fake repair guides and services and get to the root cause of your system failing that you’ve spent your hard-earned cash on. These sought-after systems aren’t getting any cheaper. If you know someone that has problems. Make sure to spread the true word of what’s really going on.
 
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Wow, this post reached 10K views. Thanks for reading my post people. It’s time we expose those fake repair guides and services and get to the root cause of your system failing that you’ve spent your hard-earned cash on. These sought-after systems aren’t getting any cheaper. If you know someone that has problems. Make sure to spread the true word of what’s really going on.
You 100% sure about your statistics that you posted? That 80% of systems have an NEC/Tokin fault? I really want to try this on my own system but want to make sure that it actually has a chance of working.
 

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You 100% sure about your statistics that you posted? That 80% of systems have an NEC/Tokin fault? I really want to try this on my own system but want to make sure that it actually has a chance of working.
I’ve read somewhere that 75 to 80% of the faults are likely those caps maybe it’s an inaccurate claim, but i fixed a bunch of PS3’s by just replacing those caps which have a high failure rate they’re even used in laptops. The best way to diagnose your PS3 is to use the Syscon tool. One person was able to find the cause to be a faulty HDMI chip. This method will tell you where the fault is if replacing those caps doesn’t fix it.
 
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A little delidding tip I've discovered during my PS3 adventures - if you want to give it a spin, but you're afraid of scratching the substrate of the CELL or the RSX, or you just can't find a tool thin enough to fit the gap... use a soda can. Aluminium soda cans have a wall thickness of less than 0.1mm and the alloy is extremely soft.

Cutting a can into thin strips makes for a great set of single-use blades that are less likely to damage the chips - the blade will just curl up if it hits a hard obstacle, allowing you to stop, remove it, replace it and continue the cutting process. Make your blades long enough to give yourself some leverage, warm up the IHS first, attack from the corners with two fingers alternating each side (fold the edge you're holding and/or wear gloves, cans are extremely sharp!), push gently and take your time. Once the glue is cut, warm up the IHS'es again and pop the lids off with a flathead, making sure that you don't touch the substrate - use the tool like a lever against your hand instead. Gently twisting the IHS beforehand can help too if it's holding strong. They come right off without a single mark.

If you're having trouble still, you can also chemically attack the glue with WD40, provided you isolate the rest of the board. It's a nightmare to remove afterwards, but it makes short work of the silicone-based glue, weakening the bond significantly. You *do not* want to leave that stuff on the PCB for too long though, so make sure to thoroughly clean the PCB after you're done to avoid damaging it.
 
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A little delidding tip I've discovered during my PS3 adventures - if you want to give it a spin, but you're afraid of scratching the substrate of the CELL or the RSX, or you just can't find a tool thin enough to fit the gap... use a soda can. Aluminium soda cans have a wall thickness of less than 0.1mm and the alloy is extremely soft.

Cutting a can into thin strips makes for a great set of single-use blades that are less likely to damage the chips - the blade will just curl up if it hits a hard obstacle, allowing you to stop, remove it, replace it and continue the cutting process. Make your blades long enough to give yourself some leverage, warm up the IHS first, attack from the corners with two fingers alternating each side (fold the edge you're holding and/or wear gloves, cans are extremely sharp!), push gently and take your time. Once the glue is cut, warm up the IHS'es again and pop the lids off with a flathead, making sure that you don't touch the substrate - use the tool like a lever against your hand instead. Gently twisting the IHS beforehand can help too if it's holding strong. They come right off without a single mark.

If you're having trouble still, you can also chemically attack the glue with WD40, provided you isolate the rest of the board. It's a nightmare to remove afterwards, but it makes short work of the silicone-based glue, weakening the bond significantly. You *do not* want to leave that stuff on the PCB for too long though, so make sure to thoroughly clean the PCB after you're done to avoid damaging it.
Nice to read, thanks for recommending this method. There is also the 30 gauge knife but it’s not as sharp.
 

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Nice to read, thanks for recommending this method. There is also the 30 gauge knife but it’s not as sharp.
Yeah, delidding the PS3 with anything you can find that's suitable should be the go-to method of improving thermals on the system, the goop Sony used was awful when it was new and at this point it's aged past the point of usefulness. A lot of people are afraid of the procedure, and they shouldn't be - if performed carefully and correctly it will make temps plummet and buy the hardware many years of healthy operation. It's good to see guides like this pop up, encouraging users to open their old systems and give them a new life, good job!
 
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    Yeah happened to me as well
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    linuxares @ linuxares: Yeah happened to me as well