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Thread: PS2 Slim question about PS1 backwards compatibility

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    Pretzel (Level 4) LaughingMAN.S9's Avatar
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    Default PS2 Slim question about PS1 backwards compatibility

    I've heard mixed things about the ps2 slim, I've read online that while it's common knowledge the fat ps2's all came with ps1 hardware built in, the slims ditched the hardware in the interest of cost and space and went with emulation instead.


    Is this true? Are fat ps2's superior to slims when it comes to ps1 games?
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    Kirby (Level 13) Leo_A's Avatar
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    I very much doubt that it's emulating PS1 games. Impressive feat though, if that's the case.

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    I have both, and truth be told, I can't tell the difference. Both look slightly different from my actual PS1, and each has a slightly different set of PS1 games that won't run, for instance my slim won't run Tomba. Overall I prefer original PS1 hardware, or PS3 running 480p component for PS1 to either PS2.

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    ServBot (Level 11) Edmond Dantes's Avatar
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    It's not really "emulation." Its more that they developed a chip or set of chips that could do everything the hardware of the PS1 could do (I'm not a tech wiz so don't ask me how that works). Something similar is done in consoles like the Retron or other multi-console systems--they're not packing a real NES and SNES in there, they're putting in a chip that can handle the same loads.

    The thing is these chips are not perfect--no matter how advanced the tech is there is always gonna be something the real mobo and pieces could handle that the chip simply can't--and that's why you have some PS2s that can handle games and some PS2s which can't handle those but can handle other games. Mine, for example, can play Lunar Silver Star Story, which I've heard most slims cannot.

    Really though, it's just like how people say the Wii made the Gamecube obsolete: it's totally wrong, and its better to keep the PS1 around for times where you want to play PS1 games.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Edmond Dantes View Post
    It's not really "emulation." Its more that they developed a chip or set of chips that could do everything the hardware of the PS1 could do (I'm not a tech wiz so don't ask me how that works). Something similar is done in consoles like the Retron or other multi-console systems--they're not packing a real NES and SNES in there, they're putting in a chip that can handle the same loads.

    The thing is these chips are not perfect--no matter how advanced the tech is there is always gonna be something the real mobo and pieces could handle that the chip simply can't--and that's why you have some PS2s that can handle games and some PS2s which can't handle those but can handle other games. Mine, for example, can play Lunar Silver Star Story, which I've heard most slims cannot.

    Really though, it's just like how people say the Wii made the Gamecube obsolete: it's totally wrong, and its better to keep the PS1 around for times where you want to play PS1 games.

    But the retron actually is an emulation machine basically, no?

    I assumed it was true for the slim due to it having some glitches with certain games or other games simply not working, I remember being stuck on disc 2 of xenogears until I got a psone and beat it there.

    I'm more inclined to believe it's hardware than emulation since I would assume we'd have more solid information definitively stating if it was by now, but still a doubt remains

    I've compared PS3 emulation at 480i via component on a Sony bvm to an actual ps1 outputting via rgb and there was a clear difference. PS3 games were blockier and more pixelated, smoothing is basically mandatory, at that point there's less of a difference but actual hardware looked better. The colors via component were a lot richer and popped more. Didn't consider doing the same with ps2 tho, regret it now since I sold off my bvm
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    Kirby (Level 13) Leo_A's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Edmond Dantes View Post
    Really though, it's just like how people say the Wii made the Gamecube obsolete: it's totally wrong
    The Wii's handling of GameCube software is perfect, since it's literally still a GameCube. The hardware is fully compatible with GCN code.

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    Kirby (Level 13) Tanooki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaughingMAN.S9 View Post
    But the retron actually is an emulation machine basically, no?

    I assumed it was true for the slim due to it having some glitches with certain games or other games simply not working, I remember being stuck on disc 2 of xenogears until I got a psone and beat it there.

    I'm more inclined to believe it's hardware than emulation since I would assume we'd have more solid information definitively stating if it was by now, but still a doubt remains

    I've compared PS3 emulation at 480i via component on a Sony bvm to an actual ps1 outputting via rgb and there was a clear difference. PS3 games were blockier and more pixelated, smoothing is basically mandatory, at that point there's less of a difference but actual hardware looked better. The colors via component were a lot richer and popped more. Didn't consider doing the same with ps2 tho, regret it now since I sold off my bvm
    Retron5 is an android main menu that fires up independent emulator plug-ins that run of their own accord that boot the ROM from the cartridge and passes it into memory/temporary storage for use while the game is in play. Retron1, 2 and 3 are cheap chinese system on a chip technology just like retrobit and even those stupid piracy packages you see around the holidays with the odd controller, the lame gun attached and it runs various famicom/nes games (super power play or some derivative.)

    My understanding of it and this was YEARS ago was that the PS2 doesn't have all the chips needed for the PS1 but it has the potential still and within its own firmware are I guess you'd call simulation/emulation of what is needed to make X Playstation game run in a PS2 system, but because those simulated calls are not 100% accurate you end up with games that won't work, have notable graphical problems, save/load issues, and other garbage (FF5 on that 5/6 package is a hot mess as I had it once.)

    In all fairness they're not alone. The same source of shenanigans and trickery at play there more or less is what NIntendo does with the 3DS and the ambassador program set of 10 GBA games. Ever wonder why they're so scatter shot? They were the easiest to pass calls to the similar improved hardware where the games would just straight up work without having to screw around and re-code them. That's why you have like SMAdvance with Yoshi's Island, or why there's Metroid Fusion but no Zero Mission, the second Fire Emblem the first FZero and not the second and so on -- and why there haven't been any since.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tanooki View Post
    (FF5 on that 5/6 package is a hot mess as I had it once.)
    Isn't it a fault of the game itself?
    I know about the save screen corruption. But I haven't seen it on my GH copy (the GH was definitely updated somehow as it has updated file dates).
    However, I saw it immediately on the PSN release (on my PSP). :P

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    Quote Originally Posted by Leo_A View Post
    The Wii's handling of GameCube software is perfect, since it's literally still a GameCube. The hardware is fully compatible with GCN code.
    The problem is that you still have to load it via the menu with the wiimote, then once the game is loaded you pick up the GC controller. With the GC you just put in the disc and power it on.

    That's kinda picky I know but that still makes me prefer the actual Cube for Cube games.

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    Kirby (Level 13) Leo_A's Avatar
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    That bugs me, too. Especially when a boot to disc option would've been trivial to implement.

    Or at the very least, enable the right analog stick of the GameCube controller to move the cursor around, like a Classic Controller can do.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tanooki View Post
    My understanding of it and this was YEARS ago was that the PS2 doesn't have all the chips needed for the PS1 but it has the potential still and within its own firmware are I guess you'd call simulation/emulation of what is needed to make X Playstation game run in a PS2 system, but because those simulated calls are not 100% accurate you end up with games that won't work, have notable graphical problems, save/load issues, and other garbage (FF5 on that 5/6 package is a hot mess as I had it once.)
    Is this true for all ps2 models or only slims?
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    Kirby (Level 13) Leo_A's Avatar
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    With how the PS2 has compatibility issues with its own software, I wouldn't infer anything from there being incompatible PS1 titles and slight differences in the compatibility list across the course of PS2 production.

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    The main difference in size between the original and slim are the removal of the power supply, IIRC. I always thought the hardware inside was identical, though shrunk mildly due to revision.

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    Kirby (Level 13) Tanooki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaughingMAN.S9 View Post
    Is this true for all ps2 models or only slims?
    All as far as I could dig up. I had found a slim at a flea market a couple years back and brought it home. Once I had it did some research on compatibility issues because it was giving me crap about some movie DVDs of all things. I found internally game wise the system was across the board for the PS2, but the disc drive (or dvd movie driver, not really sure which) is different. Some DVDs that work in the normal PS2 will not read at all or crap out while playing in a slim. The big difference between the two size/form aside is the external power supply saving a lot of room from it and heat generated but also the different dvd components(itself or the driver.) Games though, it seemed to run all the same blue, black, silver whatever PS1/2 games the same, and the PS1 games with problems equally poorly (like my FF5 example.)

    I'd argue if you're wanting a cheap PS2 to play as a DVD player as much as games, avoid the slim, the damn thing hates some DVDs and is very picky about ghetto/cheap quality off the rack dollar store discs and off brand things including educational movies (was trying to run some learning discs for my kid and it would just die die die.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Einzelherz View Post
    The main difference in size between the original and slim are the removal of the power supply, IIRC. I always thought the hardware inside was identical, though shrunk mildly due to revision.
    There was a version of the slim that still had the power supply built into the console, the power cord was just a cord. I had one of these, it stopped reading discs properly so I sold it off for parts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tanooki View Post
    All as far as I could dig up. I had found a slim at a flea market a couple years back and brought it home. Once I had it did some research on compatibility issues because it was giving me crap about some movie DVDs of all things. I found internally game wise the system was across the board for the PS2, but the disc drive (or dvd movie driver, not really sure which) is different. Some DVDs that work in the normal PS2 will not read at all or crap out while playing in a slim. The big difference between the two size/form aside is the external power supply saving a lot of room from it and heat generated but also the different dvd components(itself or the driver.) Games though, it seemed to run all the same blue, black, silver whatever PS1/2 games the same, and the PS1 games with problems equally poorly (like my FF5 example.)

    I'd argue if you're wanting a cheap PS2 to play as a DVD player as much as games, avoid the slim, the damn thing hates some DVDs and is very picky about ghetto/cheap quality off the rack dollar store discs and off brand things including educational movies (was trying to run some learning discs for my kid and it would just die die die.)
    that's PS2's in general, for what ever reason they used a dvd drive that had a manually adjustable laser height instead of making it fixed with a greater focal length.
    I've been working on a few PS2s getting them ready to sell and I had a run of 5 systems with this problem. an adjustment and cleaning and its fixed.
    with the way you can adjust it though you can make it so it only reads specific types of discs, it might work on a single layer dvd but not a dual layer, cds only, stuff like that.

    I was getting one going and I made it so it could only read PS1 games but no blue or silver bottom PS2 games, went a little further and they all worked.

    as far as emulation though theres a chipset in there that runs the games in PS1 mode, from what I have read its also the same chip that handles the I/O when running PS2 games.
    this is what I read online of course because I had a similar question before. either way they aren't exact copies of the PS1 system as a whole so I imagine it would be considered hardware emulation.

    physical chipset running the game as the chipsets secondary purpose not its main

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    Quote Originally Posted by Einzelherz View Post
    The main difference in size between the original and slim are the removal of the power supply, IIRC. I always thought the hardware inside was identical, though shrunk mildly due to revision.
    70000 is the more or less travel friendly one, external 100~240V power supply.

    90000 moved it back inside.
    Lum fan.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gameguy View Post
    There was a version of the slim that still had the power supply built into the console, the power cord was just a cord. I had one of these, it stopped reading discs properly so I sold it off for parts.
    This is how the last slim PS2's were. The last one I ever saw new in a retail store was this way (I bought it, after months of looking for one).

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    Quote Originally Posted by theclaw View Post
    70000 is the more or less travel friendly one, external 100~240V power supply.

    90000 moved it back inside.
    Didn't know that. That'd make my power cord switching issues less problematic...

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    I've had my PS2 Slim since the PS3 debuted (I'm a secondhand console type of guy), and the one PS1 game I NEVER got working on it was Legend of Dragoon. There was a boss battle somewhere on the second disc, and whenever you finished it, the in-battle cutscene would play, but after that, it just hung... indefinitely. If you're worried about compatibility with ps1 games, just get a ps1. they're dirt cheap; virtually no one wants them because most people are fine with PS2's backwards compatibility. If you want a GameShark for your PS1 games, then you pretty much have to get the actual ps1 console, but if you get the one that uses the parallel (?) port in the back, make sure you get the right model, but don't get the model with the built in Composite out jacks, as they have a track recording with disc reading.

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