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Buddha
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Can a Playstation 1 be hi-fi?

Aloha,

At the recent T.H.E. show, a very cool manufacturer who shall remain anonymous played me some tunes on his system using a Sony Playstation I as his CD source.

It sounded surprisingly good!

Of course, the next stop was Ebay, where these babies sell for about 20 to 30 bucks, including games! Now that one is winging its way westward, I figured I'd ask who's been playing (music) with these babies.

Also, here's a link to a thread about it at DIY Audio forums...

Playstation link

This thing seems ripe for mini-mods and cable play!

It also strikes close to what I think is the beating heart of hi-fi: finding things that sound better than they should.

More info when it arrives and I can torture it a little.

*Disclaimer: I will be performing these torture tests myself, any and all torture will be my responsibility and mine only. No torture will be outsourced.

Cheers.

Anthony Tam
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Re: Can a Playstation 1 be hi-fi?

Can you do similar tests on an XBOX 1? I'd be curious as to the results of a comparison test.

Buddha
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Re: Can a Playstation 1 be hi-fi?

Well, after reading through that DIY thread, I was hopeful...

Then I played it.

Two dimensional (no TV jokes please) and a serious lack of dynamics.

Dry. Antisepctic.

Kind of like a simple wine, not alot going on.

Sorry to say it, but I think we now have a candidate player for the positive control for DBT.

Interestingly, though, there were bits of detail that at first seemed to be there on the Playstation that weren't on the Marantz CD 67-SE that I paired it up against.

Those differences reminded me of my experience with MP3's in that MP3's have this thing that seems to call extra attention to voices.

Both phenomenon at first "glance" seem to offer something that another source doesn't, but it's really just the opposite. What's happened is that they draw attention to something else because they are missing the other parts.

So, on the Playstation, Johnny Cash's version of "I Won't Back Down" on disc three of the Rick Rubin discs there is a very analytical sound that seems to be unveiling the back-up singers but is actually only doing that because it isn't doing the other stuff it should do.

So, anyway, not the bee's knees, but I've already done what any self-respecting audiophile would do...at 15 bucks each, I bought four more so I could compare some more! Hey, wouldn't you throw good monet over bad looking for an audio bargain?

More info as they rotate through.

Jeff Wong
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Re: Can a Playstation 1 be hi-fi?

Which version of the first Playstation did you pick up? As I recall, the ones touted as being pretty decent sounding were the very first generation with RCA jacks built into the unit's chassis. Later versions had an umbilical cord with RCA outputs on it.

Buddha
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Re: Can a Playstation 1 be hi-fi?

Hi Jeff!

It was an early first generation with the RCA's. Tried it with stock cable and then more esoteric stuff, but nada on the magic.

I got another first generation I'll try, and then I found three later model "umbilicals" for 13 bucks each (40.00 for all three) that I'm going to give a listen.

Then, one of the umbilicals will be the first to be dissected - for the greater good, of course - and see what I can figure out.

Jeff Wong
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Re: Can a Playstation 1 be hi-fi?

Ah, interesting. I always had my doubts about it as a giant killer. I have a slightly later one that I could give a try for laughs. There's no digital out on those, is there? I was thinking if there was, maybe it could just be used as a transport along with some jitter reduction before a DAC.

defgibbon
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Re: Can a Playstation 1 be hi-fi?

It's only the first version of the PS-1, with the RCA audio outputs. The later "updates" all had significantly cheaper parts. One very important trick with these units is: ALWAYS LEAVE THEM ON! They sound a little boring at first power-up, but after several days, they start sounding right. There are some differences between units, but all the ones I've heard have sounded very good. Also, as the thread Buddha points to in his original post mentions, the audio out in the A/V MULTI OUTPUT modular plug is better. Just a little, but definitely more transparent.

But don't tell anyone. Let's keep this our little secret, 'k?

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