Please Read Before Ordering/Installing Your Chip –
For first time installers and general inquiries on picking a chip or installing it, please read this post:
What Chip to Get
There are three tiers to chip quality: top, medium, and crap.
Top Tier Chips
These chips are the highest quality and offer virtually no problems during their run. They have lots of information on them and are updated regularly.
Crystal Chip - $30 (1.2), $40 (2.0)
Matrix Infinity - $40
Medium Tier Chips
These chips are average in quality, sometimes have problems and have less support than top tier chips.
DMS4 Solder (not EZI) - $55
Mars - $15
Magic ICE - $15
Newer Matrix Infinity clones (FW 1.82+) - $15
These chips are the lowest quality of all, used in an extreme case if you can get it working or if you're dirt cheap. Expect problems if installed incorrectly or if you get an extremely poor quality chip.
DMS4 EZI - $70
Duo Chips (Magic ICE based) - $15
Older Matrix Infinity Clones (FW 1.39-1.54) - $8
Modbo 4.0 Pro (clone of DMS4 Lite) - price unknown
Good Installation Practices
There are some general guidelines when it comes to PS2 modchip installs:
1. Insulate your chip, top AND bottom. Some people think the plastic shield between the shield and motherboard is enough. It isn't most of the time.
2. Use the proper wire length and type. 30AWG Kynar is necessary for all points but power and ground. 24AWG Kynar is for power and ground points. Length should be kept to a minimum to prevent any interference. Don't think you can get away with a crap install; it'll come back to haunt you later.
3. Have the proper tools. BEFORE opening your PS2, have a #0, #1 and #2 Phillips screwdriver. #2 may be extra, but sometimes it's helpful with big screws. Solder should be roughly thicker than 0.7mm pencil lead. Your soldering iron is the most important tool, without it, you have no hope of doing a good job, or even the job. A Radioshack/The Source Pencil Iron will do if you file it down to a fine point. Any iron/station not exceeding 25 watts is fine, otherwise you risk damaging the traces/pads. Desoldering braid is a must for BIOS legs. Magnification is not helpful in most cases because you tend to lose hand eye coordination. A multimeter is a godsend in some situations, but might not be needed on an install if you know what you're doing.
4. You must have experience. Having the latest soldering equipment but no skill is useless. Practice makes perfect; try soldering, botching and fixing a spare PCB laying around. Once you are confident, you can go ahead and start on your PS2.
5. Safety is a must in anything, soldering is no exception. Have an organized desk, tools in the right place and screws in the order you removed them. If you lose track of what screw goes where, you can take a picture of each stage of the disassembly on a digital camera with the type of screw you removed visible in the photo. When you work on the system, try not to get distracted, stay focused. It's all right if you got burned once in an install, we're all human. Getting burned repeatedly on the same job means you're not doing something right. Also, wash your hands thoroughly after soldering and wear some sort of ventilator mask. Flux fumes aren't fun. I wear disposable gloves and have a charcoal filter mask, but that's being safe.
6. Common sense. Sometimes a manual isn't the most accurate guide. If you're reassembling your PS2 and something doesn't fit right, odds are you misplaced a part. Work backwards and find what you did wrong.
7. Keep it simple. If you find a point on a chip that seems to difficult, don't try it! Remember Murphy's law, "what can go wrong will go wrong if you give it a chance." Try to consult various diagrams to see if they have a common point, and if there's an alternate. A multimeter may help to find an alternate point. Remember that soldering to a pad or via is less prone to problems than a chip leg if done properly.
8. If something goes wrong, don't panic. If you think the chip is at fault, bring the system back to normal without a chip. If it doesn't work then, there may be some solder splashes or bridges. Always post pictures (please, not blurry) of your botchery no matter how bad, we're here to help.
Proper Installation Procedure
- Test the system
- Solder P,O,N,M,Q,T,U,V,R,W,PWR,GND
- Test the system (ex. disable chip, logo)
- If all good, continue. If not, check your points
- Solder B,G,I,A,H,SCEX,RST/TO,Y/HA
- Test the system with PS1, PS2 CD, PS2 DVD backups
- If all good, reassemble. If not, check points.
summ0ne's resistor fix - Protects the against overload, but starves the laser for power.
Diode "fix" - Barely does anything to help. Not even worth the two cents it costs to make.
Subzero fix - Great for protecting the laser. Only thing better are PIC fixes.
PIC/Comsoft fix - The best protection available. Nice to know it works because it shuts down the system.
Black Screen Of Death (BSOD): Check BIOS points
Red Screen Of Death (RSOD/Insert PS1/PS2 Disc) or Burned discs do not boot: Check CD & DVD and SCEX points
Chip works only on first startup: Check RST point
System acts as if there's no chip: Check PWR, GND and BIOS points. If available, try the install with another chip.
System works when semi-assembled, but not when completely together: Check for pressure on wires/chip
- The connection should be semi-shiny
- Very little exposed wire
- Connection can resist three light tugs
- The iron has no oxide and is semi-shiny
- No visible shorts/bridges
- The iron melts solder fairly instantaneously.
Where to Buy
If possible, locally or in person
Last edited by FahadSaid; 02-22-2007 at 02:55 PM.
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