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Old 22nd January 2008, 02:58 AM   #1791
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Join Date: May 2007
Hola John..

I will not buy a Hi-end hi-cost aftermarket fuse..don't worry!! but, I will buy the generic ceramic fuses that cost around $3.00 for package. I would like to do some work to the power supply but maybe later...

The PS1 is a good unit but it's not my main digital system. I use a Sony SCD-C2000ES into a MHDT Constantine DAC.


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Old 24th January 2008, 03:13 AM   #1792
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Join Date: Nov 2006
I have just finished working on my old PlayStation ( SCPH-5501) and here are some pics of what I did.

Playstation mods

No mods to any electrical. I did shield the power supply boards from the rest of the machine. I did clean it all up well and I did solder on better RCA cables using the A/V out as a starting point.

I built a vibration platform to dampen the unit. It is basically a sandwich using 3 pliable rubber feet mounted to a 12x17x 5/8ths HDF board. The board has dimples drilled into it to set in 8 springs that once came from 1970's vintage BSR turntable, the spring type table common among BSR brand back then. I epoxied these springs in a symmetrical layout on the firs HDF board. The next HDF board was dimple to sit on top of the springs to and keep the platform stable from left to right and front to back sliding around. I then glued and screwed 4 small brass plates with dimples drilled in them on the top board, so that my home made spike feet (am going to redo these better later) can seat into these dimples. The spikes are glued to the base of my PlayStation and IMO this is a pretty good looking vibration damper.

My PlayStation was painted black. I have another copy painted silver that I can swap if I like.

I have done an extensive A x B x C listening test today that I'm currently writing about and will post here later... Stay tuned.
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Old 24th January 2008, 08:48 AM   #1793
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Join Date: Nov 2006
Follow up question.

I have the SCPH-5501 model of the PlayStation as noted in my previous post. This one has the same AKM DAC and clocking frequency from what have read. But can anyone tell about the AKM DAC? Is it a standard 16 bit DAC or what else? Does the PlayStation offer over sampling as apart of its performance? Just curious because I must admit having finally given my unit a chance and a good listening I am impressed with the sound. As noted in my previous post I spent a good chunk of time doing some listening and am writing up a detailed review of my feelings from my test I plan to post the review here shortly.

Thanks in advanced for an answers.
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Old 24th January 2008, 03:21 PM   #1794
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: london UK
i am also running a 550x in my setup (i also have 2 1001's, but i prefer the 5501 at the moment because the case is in a nicer condition).
the dac is 16 bit only, and yep, sounds good to me too but i bypassed the output with a high pass filter (black-gate 47uf HiQ-Nx caps and 2k2 resistors to ground i think)

i plan on building a linear PSU, and recasing one of the 1001's in a custom enclosure. a whole manner of remote/control button mods is in the pipeline (along with about 100 other projects). i love that its a nice cheap unit, ballsing it up is not a big problem.
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Old 24th January 2008, 06:51 PM   #1795
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Join Date: May 2007
Phileas, great job!!

My base looks like yours but I will use a roller system instead.

You just need 6 concave door knobs pullers like these..

or bigger from Amerock (BP 3414/3413). Those are going to be placed into the shelves in a triangular mirror image configuration. Them, put 3 metal ball bearings in between the knobs and you got what Symposium call a Double Stack Configuration for their my case, a RollerBearingPlatform...

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Old 24th January 2008, 06:51 PM   #1796
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Here is a picture of the Amerock BP 3414-26 , which ACE has expensive compared to the $1.19 tag from my local hardware store ( and ACE representative).

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Old 24th January 2008, 07:45 PM   #1797
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Join Date: Nov 2006
Thanks Jose,

Your setup for damping looks cool too.

In listening to my setup one thing I have noticed a low level buzz ( not a hum) when volume is turned up to a more realistic level. I thought it was the A/V cable but I swapped the cable with the one used on my PS2 and I still have the buzz. So I figure it has to be inside the PlayStation unit I have. It is not noticeable when music is playing or when you have volume on the lower side but only when a little louder and between tracks.

I have an SCHP9001 bought at a thrift store and decided to take it apart to see how simple it was and of course it is simple, so I have taken my SCPH-5501 apart also to paint the bottom plate black to but in reinstalling parts and hopefully get rid of the buzz.

I ask you or anyone here what should I look for in trying to locate this buzz.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 24th January 2008, 08:03 PM   #1798
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Join Date: May 2007

Not sure about the "buzzing thing" but it has to be related to power issues maybe...

Have you replaced the fuse? what about the power cable?

Painting the unit insides black is a good idea. Someone at the Asylum reported his experiences with 3 different CD players he painted and all were positives.

I also think about using a sound deadenning paint too. It will damp the plastic case and will be black so you kill two birds with one shot!!!

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Old 25th January 2008, 01:50 AM   #1799
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Join Date: May 2007
What are you guys using to damp the innards of your PS1?

I don't have a Dynamat or similar sound deadening material supplier near my area which limit my options.

I thought about using a BlueTack type compound which I saw at WalMart, it's call HandyTack and cost just $1.18/pck. This is the same as the usuals Fun Tack, UHU Tack, etc...

What about the Balsa Wood strips from the Craft and Arts section in WM. This are about 3"x1"x1/4" and are about $2.50/12 .Can be glued or attached with the same fun-tack...

Any other suggestions?


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Old 25th January 2008, 03:54 AM   #1800
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Join Date: Nov 2006
PlayStation as a quality CD player.


First I want to make a few points clear. I am an avid listener or recorded music, a critical listener at that. I am a guy who desires to build the best system I can on my “beer budget”. I have as I matured and learned how to listen too and shop for gear come a long way building a good system. I have worked in the retail of electronics generally better quality stuff. I have also over the years purchased gear that under whelmed me mostly out of my own ignorance and impulse due to cheap prices at the time of purchase. But I am learning and have built a decent system one that would impress most anyone.

I have no reason to artificially go out of my way to speak of the PlayStation as a superior CD player. I have no stock in the Sony Corp. and no other gains from what I will say positively or negatively on my review of the PlayStation as a CD play compared to others used in my test here let alone the multitude of other choices one has available new or used, high priced or not.

My system used consists of the following.

Denon AVR-3802 as my preamp/processor in surround sound and in stereo sound. It is an above average AVR and built by a respected larger corporation.

Yaqin MC-10L, EL-34 output tube amp. A surprisingly good tube amp for the money out of China. It has overwhelmed my expectations since buying it.

Main CD player: Cambridge Audio D-300SE. A respected brand and CD player for listeners who demand higher performance than most consumer gear. It has never disappointed me since owning it.

DVD Recorder/Player: Hitachi DVRX-3000. Hooked up by both digital out and analogue out and use mostly to record t.v. show and to play DVD’s. A unit actually built by Panasonic for Hitachi back in 2003-2004.

Main speakers: Paradigm Export BP. Bipolar speakers that as typical of Paradigm corp. Impress and deliver solid performance. I’ve had these speakers for over 10 years and they still put a smile on my face.

Cables are an assortment of moderate after market stuff to DIY cables made with Ultra link connectors and Phoenix Gold RG-6 cabling.

I can listen to music very critically and have good hearing. I am keenly aware of differences I hear in recorded sound but being this is a more critical review I made sure to take notes as I listened to 30-45 second cuts repeated on each player used as I heard music. I am aware of our lack of ability to accurately hold onto acoustic memory as we hear sounds. I tried to make sure my amplifier volume was closely matched as I switched between players as I know louder volume initially make a listener believe that the louder machine is better.

For music I selected discs that are considered well recorded, one feature Bruce Cockburn as a solid male vocal with well supported instruments backing him up. The next featured one of IMO the best female vocalists out there, Anne Lennox. Finally a live CD by Steely Dan for a twist to studio sessions.

Before running my tests I had my system turned on for about 15-20 minutes to let the amps, Cambridge Audio, Hitachi and PlayStation machines warm up.

Onto my reviews:

DISC #1: Bruce Cockburn, Nothing but a burning light, track “A dream like mine.”

PlayStation: Weight of the bass was good it was tight but not too deep or too wide in comparison to both the Hitachi and the Cambridge. It was business-like and clear though. Vocals were smooth and a bit laid back compared especially to the Hitachi. They were not as airy compared to the D-300se. But I found them chiseled in centre stage and pleasant. The vocals got a bit buried by other mid frequency sounds as pace of music rose and as other sound competed but nothing hard to listen too. Mids had good level of air but not as good as the D-300se but more pleasant than the Hitachi... Mids were clear and firmly focused in space if not a little intimate.

Hitachi: It had a slightly wider sound stage than the PS1 with good snap but a little fuzzy and lost in focus. Vocals were very much up front, clear but edgy, a little congested when music was going loud and mixed together with other instrument playing. They were never terrible but not as much fun to hear as ether on the PS1 or the D-300SE. Bass was loose but wide, flowing, deeper than the PS1 but not as deep as the D-300SE. Backing instrument were a little lost buy strong B.C. vocals.

D-300se: Bass weight very good, very wide with good flow. Not as punchy or as technical as the PS1 but out did the Hitachi in all areas. If you want deeper flowing bass the D-300se owned this but the PS1 had more technically clear bass for my ears. Preference is personal as to which sounded better. The Hitachi was less weighted compared to the D-300se but less punchy and technical compared to the PS1. Vocals were strong but laid back, good air to them. Nice rolled off edge to the midrange but a touch of edge when music got going loud or when many other instruments were backing vocals up.

DISC #2: Anne Lennox Medusa, track title “No more I love you”.

PS1: The vocals were again clear but a little upfront not bad but again chisel or focused at centre stage. Sound stage was again les deep or wide compared to the D-300se. Touch of edge on her vocal extensions. Good bass, punchy but not too wide or deep again technical and clean if a little less vibrant compared especially to the D-300se and less so to the Hitachi.
Backing vocals were over powered a little bit by backing instruments. Smooth sound though

Hitachi: Vocals very clear but way up front. Weight in bass was good but looser quality to the PS1 bass. Vocal extensions congested and lost in focus.Good air but not as good as the D-300se.

Hitachi in analogue: Narrower vocals as compared to digital out going through the Denon. But vocals were smoother. Clear vocals by Lennox but not as wide as when using the digital out to the Denon. Soundstage not as deep. Bass a more weak in weight.

D-300se: Again smooth vocals with lots of air around them. Full bass with good weight but again not as punchy as PS1 bass. Lennox vocals clear, less edge on extensions. Laid back sound staging. Friendly sound but less technical compared to the PS1.

DISC #3: STEELY DAN Live in America. track “Babylon sisters.”

PS1: Smooth soundstage again less wide as compared to D-300se. tight clear bass was pleasant but less weighty or airy. Vocals clear nicely up front compare to the D-300se but not as in your face as the Hitachi was. Backing vocals edgy and a little lost not too deep or wise. Mids less full but pleasant, business-like.

Hitachi: Deep bass but again looser compared to the PS1 and D-300se. Wide soundstage but less air, fuzzy. Vocals very upfront, strong, but over powering to backing vocals and instruments. Not harsh but just less enjoyable to either the D-300se or the PS1. Backing vocals thin and less depth again congested.

Hitachi in analogue: Thinner bass, not as wide. Smooth mids but narrower to either the D-300se or the PS1. Smooth bass punch, less weight than in digital out mode. Vocals more lay back but still too up front, though nice and clear. Backing vocals lost and flatter in depth.

D-300sE Great bass weight, lots of air less punch than PS1 bass. Wide soundstage. Vocals upfront but clear not as overpowering as Hitachi with better air than PS 1 but less focused. Good definition on instruments though. Laid back sound quality. Backing vocals larger and pleasant but less chiseled than on thePS1.


Simply I’m impressed. I had the PlayStation since 1997 used it only as game piece maybe playing 5 minutes of CD music on it back in the day. After reading online about it as a quality cd player I took the plunge, cleaned mine up, soldered on better RCA’s and built a vibration damping platform. I am IMPRESSED!!! Honestly, I am not making this up and I am not doing wishful thinking. I have no reason to play up the PlayStation but only a desire to relay my experiences.

Is it better than the D-300se or Hitachi? It is better than the Hitachi by far as for the D-300se they both sound different. The D-300se is laid back, clear and airy; the PS1 is precise, technical, clean, and intimate. It seems to just get out of the way and make music.

If I never had a D-300se knowing what I know now the PS1 is a great little machine. Is it a $2000-$6000 giant killer? I don’t know, I have never heard those. But I will say this it is likely (the SCPH-100x up to and esp. speaking for my SCPH-5501) the best under $400 CD player you can buy. It is probably better than any DVD player you will buy and any cheaper stuff you can grab. It is a steal IMO but if used it requires a good cleaning, better cables and a vibration damping concept and/or platform.

If you are interested in giving one a try, snag one up and give it a whirl, you may be impressed by it and that ain't all bad. Remember back in 1994-95 it was a $500 CD player not just a gaming system. That is likely why Sony got this audio product right. 

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