So is the "lvl1.mp3" / "lvl2diag.PSS" downgrade method bogus, then?
I know, the easy answer should be "yes" but since I have to consider that my only other choice is a $70 expense, it makes sense to tackle all options. Heck, by the end of the year it'll probably be cheaper just to pick up a used PS3.
The downgrade method I reference in the topic can be Googled. I believe it stems primarily from a Youtube video detailing how to get it working. It claims to be able to downgrade any OFW to 3.55. The actual download links do not seem to work, even if one goes ahead and jumps through the exceedingly dodgy hoops put in place. But the feedback to the video is curiously positive, and people seem to be looking for the files all over Google.
I guess I'm just trying to clear up the mystery behind this video and these files whose existence I can't even confirm. If nothing else, it's a mystery that they haven't even been brought up in these forums.