Sample provided by Crystal Chip Team www.crystal-chips.com
Reviewed my www.norcalmods.com
Well its finally here! The chip we have all been waiting for from the CC team. The Crystal Chip 2.0! This is the CC Teams new flag ship chip that is sure to bring great things to the scene. We all knew this chip was coming and we have been waiting for a very long time. Wondering, anticipating hoping ….. well it was very much worth the wait.
• Full Autoboot of all media, 100% no-swap direct boot
• Compatible with all console revisions v1 - v15b
• Compatible with all PAL/NTSC sytems, all regions supported
• HDD, USB, MC, Flash "Dev Mode" support
• DVD Region Free with RCE, Green Screen(RGB) Fix and DVD Color Fix
• Macrovision "OFF"
• Upgradable firmware
• Quick boot mode
• Hardware and software based boot modes such as "Sleep","Enhanced" and "Minimal"
• PBAT scripting for automating homebrew software and menus
• Installation control onboard LED
• High timing stability - Onboard Crystal Oscillator
• Hardware Recovery Mode
• Completely jumperless, auto-configuration
• 1 megabyte Dataflash with DFFS (DataFlashFileSystem)
• Multdisc-Games Support
• ACTEL FPGA Technology
• Custom glitch detection logic & noise filter
• Professional 4-Layer PCB design
• Easy installation, max. of only 21 wires
• High quality anti-static packaging incl. case sticker
• Quality & functionality control for each item
The CC2.0 is the same size PCB as the CC1.0-CC1.2 which is a very convenient and small size. The pad layout is also the same as the CC1.2 which in my eyes is the best layout for any mod chip. The CC2.0 also has its own onboard oscillator which I have always liked chips to have. 4 large ground pads make it easy to locate a good short ground point. The CC2.0 carried over the status LED from its little brother the CC1.2 as well. This is a nice hardware feature that will give you an indication of how the install of your CC is. The following is quoted from the CC site.
Unlike other chips on the market I have never once seen a CC of any version with any sign of ground bounce. The CC chip is well manufactured and has large solder pads and large traces when compared with other chips. Here is a close up of the CC2.0LED glows for only 1 second on system startup and discs boot = All is fine
LED glows all the time and won't go off = Wrong installation of the bios wires
LED goes off and discs won't boot = Wrong installation of the CD/DVD controller wires
I installed the sample in a V12 that also has a HD-Combo installed so I can take advantage of the HDD features of the new BM. The install went smooth and was easy as all CC’s are to install since the PCB is exactly the same! After the install was done I popped in the hacked FW/BM disc and up popped the BM’s menu asking me what I would like to do (screen shots will come at the end). I first flashed the CC2.0’s onboard flash from the disc. I then installed BM to the flash as well. I then turned off the PSTwo, and then turned it back on. I was pleasantly greeted with the BM’s new theme and menus. I quickly scrolled through the menus to have a look at the abundance of options given to me and all I can say is ….. DAMN THIS CHIP HAS IT ALL!!!
Here is a picture of the install.
The CC line of chips from CC1.0-CC2.0 all use an application called Boot Manger, BM for short. BM is the equivalent of a replacement for the Sony browser. You Xbox junkies can equate BM to a hacked dashboard. BM is where all the setting for the CC takes place, as well as many other features. The software features are to numerous to mention here in the review. I will touch on a few but let me tell you that the software side of the CC chip is were all the magic happens. For a more detailed look into BM have a look at this link
BM can be installed to the CC2.0’s onboard flash which is 1 megabyte in size. This is a huge advantage in that you now don't have to use your PS2’s memory card to store BM on. This has a few advantages but the main one being “Convenience”. Currently the CC2.0 will only allow you to install BM to the CC’s flash, which in reality why would you want to install it elsewhere.
BM v2.0.6 introduced a much needed feature to the CC software which was HDD support. Now you can boot homebrew elfs like ULE and SMS as well as everyone’s favorite elf HDL! No more waisted space on your memory card and no need to have a USB stick in your PS2 for your elfs now either! BM now also supports skinning through its theme manger. More will come on themes hopefully in the future. The newest BM even has a networking feature which allows you to communicate with BM from your PC. The beta version had a working FTP but from what I understand it has been removed until some bugs can be worked out.
After I had BM flashed to the CC’s flash (which I will call cflash from here on out) I installed ULE to my USB pen drive. I did this instead of the HDD first because I needed to create a folder on my HDD called ‘Crystal’ which I used ULE to accomplish. I then booted ULE through BM and navigated to my HDD which I had already formatted with Winhiip (but can also be done with ULE). I then created the ‘Crystal’ folder on my HDD. I then installed HDL to my HDD through BM and then booted HDL and as expected I was quickly playing my back-ups from my HDD. YES!! This is the one feature I have been waiting for the CC team to develop for as long time.
Currently BM on a V12 with HD-Combo has some bugs with booting ULE from the HDD so I was unable to test this, but on V1-V11 consoles this shouldn’t be a problem although I have not tested that yet.
Basic Disc booting from BM
With the hacked FW/BM you will be able to boot back-up disc with the CC2.0 excellently. I tested with all formats and it had no issues. BM auto detects the disc type you have in the console and boots it appropriately. BM even has an icon in the upper left corner notifying you of the disc type before it boots it. You can even have BM boot the disc in ‘Sleep mode’ which in effect is the same as disabling the chip. From BM’s options menu you have many features ranging from screen adjustment to forcing video standards to DVD movie booting options just to mention a few. Here are a few screen captures of BM in action.