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Just got the new PS2 PLUS (prog video and more).


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16 replies to this topic

#1 of 17 OFFLINE   Frank@N

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Posted October 02 2003 - 06:14 PM

OK, let's agree that the PS2 isn't the best DVD player out there.

But depending on your TV size and type, you'd be hard pressed to see the difference.

Since I have a smaller interlaced WEGA with a single component video input, a convergence box works great for me.

Anyway, I've been using the PS2 as a DVD player for 2 years (never had a standalone player).

The original PS2, however, had a couple of shortcomings (noisy fan, DVD remote required use of second controller port, DVD update driver used 20% of memory card, no prog video).

At long last, *all* these shortcomings have been addressed in the new PS2 PLUS hardware revision.

These units have been available for about a week now and can be identified by the yellow + symbol in the corner of the blue retail box.

Features: fan is now whisper quiet (a huge improvement), IR port is now built-in to the unit (DVD remote still purchased separately), DVD driver 3.00U is now in firmware (finally off your memory card), and Progressive video is here.

The unit also supports DTS, but I don't recall if that was available in previous units or not.

If you are using a PS2 as a DVD player, this upgrade is *highly* recommended.

At GameStop you can currently trade in your old PS2 for $100, so the new unit will only cost you $79.

#2 of 17 OFFLINE   RANDY FISHER

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Posted October 03 2003 - 04:44 AM

I picked mine up Wednsday! I went to an EBX in my area were I saw the new units over the weekend. The sales geek tried to tell me that they never had them...or the boxes I saw were empty. I was like WTF? It was as if they were told not to sell the new ones until the old ones were gone. So I left and headed across town to a differnt EB. I graduated with the manager who works there. She had no idea what I was taking about but showed me a back room full of the new units with the yellow and blue corner "+" sticker. I said "thats it!" and she rung one up for me. She made a comment about maybe she should sell the old ones first. I got it home and hooked it up to my 36" XBR that is now pulling living room duty since I got my projector. Used my $10 MadKatz component cable and was off and running. I had a HELL of a time configuring the DVD player for 16:9 and progressive. I had to call the tech support line! I never did that before. Anyway, while the guy was getting information on the new unit I got it working without him. He told me, and I confirmed this with the manual, that certain changes can't be made with out disabling the resume play feature when you press stop on a DVD. You have to press stop while a DVD is playing and then hit "X" twice...real intuitive. It also seemed that I could change the region code at will while in this mode...hmmmm that would be cool. I will have to check on that later. The progressive DVD is pretty good on the actual movies but I saw it comb on menus and such. Not bad for a progrogressive DVD player, playstation 1 and 2 in one package. The new fan is VERY quiet. I couldn't hear it in my TV stand at all and the built in IR port was able to recognize some of the functions from a standard SONY DVD player remote. The on, off and open close functions did not work. Maybe with the new PS2 remote when it gets released. Then I was off to play some Contra.

Randy
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#3 of 17 OFFLINE   Frank@N

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Posted October 04 2003 - 04:25 PM

Randy,

I had the exact same series of problems: Sony PS2 tech support doesn't have a clue.

They spent a half hour telling me that my TV Type would be auto-detected (absurd), but couldn't explain how.

Eventually I figured to hit Stop twice (to defeat the 'Resume Play' feature).

FYI, to all interested: this is the only way to change TV Type and toggle Progressive video.

==============

As far as the new unit goes, I'm very happy with it.

Fan noise is *non-existent* and the unit is much lighter as well.

I'm a little concerned about the disc tray motor, it feels a bit low quality.

It also seems like the Search function is slower to kick and isn't as responsive as the old PS2.

===============

As far as the Regional settings in the DVD menu, unfortunately it seems to pertain to parental controls only.

#4 of 17 OFFLINE   Frank@N

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Posted October 06 2003 - 02:51 AM

OK, had a chance to watch a few more movies.

Granted this isn't scientific, I didn't have the forethought to A/B the same movies and my old PS2 is already traded in.

What I have noticed is a bit more shimmer and jitter on diagonals than I was used to seeing with the previous hardware.

I suspect that the old PS2 was optimized for interlaced video (my current TV is still interlaced), whereas the new unit may be optimized for progressive video.

Just a hunch, but the interlaced video now looks a bit more 'edgy'.

I have also witnessed a few nasty layer changes, so I can't really say that the new PS2 has gotten any better in that department.

I was hoping for those transparent layer changes I've heard some players can pull off.

So far the improvements still out weight the cons, considering the $79 upgrade fee.

#5 of 17 OFFLINE   Frank@N

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Posted October 06 2003 - 10:56 AM

Some are reporting that you can turn off the hardware and open the tray using the DVD remote, doesn't seem likely (no dedicated buttons for those functions...).

Also tried sending 'power off' using WEGA remote programed for Sony DVD players, PS2 still doesn't respond (old version didn't either).

Oh well, you gotta get up to take the disc out anyway.

#6 of 17 OFFLINE   RANDY FISHER

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Posted October 06 2003 - 11:18 PM

"Some are reporting that you can turn off the hardware and open the tray using the DVD remote, doesn't seem likely (no dedicated buttons for those functions...)."

There's a new remote available in Japan for the new model PS2 that allows just that. It is supposed to be released here at some point. I think the picture on the back of the new box is the new remote. There are a couple of extra buttons on the top of the remote if you look close.

Randy
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#7 of 17 OFFLINE   Hugo

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Posted October 07 2003 - 07:16 AM

Hi, I'm very tempted to upgrade my playstation 2. But I only use it to play games, got my separete dvd player. Do the games look better or the progresive scan output only works for movies? Could it be that in some near future game developers start making games in 480p?

Hugo

#8 of 17 OFFLINE   Frank@N

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Posted October 07 2003 - 07:34 AM

Hugo,

I'm glad you posted before making the purchase.

You won't really get the main benefit of the upgrade.

The new PS2 + is only 'progressive' in terms of DVD video.

Since you only play games this won't help you...unless your really bothered by the loud fan on the older units.

#9 of 17 OFFLINE   Frank@N

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Posted October 07 2003 - 07:39 AM

Quote:
Could it be that in some near future game developers start making games in 480p?


I wish that all PS2 games were made to do this from the start...but no such luck.

I'm only aware of a handful of PS2 games that were developed to support progressive video.

It is odd that when listed (Tekken 4 & SC II), progressive support is referred to as 525p.

I wonder why this resolution is listed?

#10 of 17 OFFLINE   Matt DeVillier

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Posted October 07 2003 - 09:41 AM

NTSC is 525 lines, 480 of which are visible (PAL is 625/576).

#11 of 17 OFFLINE   EricWG

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Posted October 08 2003 - 05:33 AM

I too am using my PS2 for my dvd player untill I get a nicer TV, then I'll get a stand alone. My big problem with the PS2 was it wouldn't play some chapters in certain movies. One that comes to mind is Blade II, during the reaper disection scene. Does the new PS2 overcome this? Are these bad layer transitions? I could never quite figure out why this happened on certain movies and not others. I can play the movie, but I have to skip over the problem chapter, or the player skips really badly if it doesn't just stop altogether and say unreadable disk.

#12 of 17 OFFLINE   Frank@N

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Posted October 08 2003 - 09:40 AM

Quote:
I have to skip over the problem chapter, or the player skips really badly



This is definitely not normal for any DVD player (even the PS2), although I have had a few damaged DVDs that exhibited this behavior.

Did you load the 2.10u DVD driver update that comes with the PS2 remote?

FYI, Blade 2 works fine with 2.10u driver.

If this is happening with several discs, then you either have allot of damaged discs or your PS2 is in need of repair.

You might try cleaning the lense.

I wouldn't spend allot of money trying to fix the problem though, since you can upgrade to a PLUS unit for $79.

#13 of 17 OFFLINE   EricWG

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Posted October 08 2003 - 05:12 PM

I did some research on it when I first noticed it and it seemed a common problem. I have a first gen ps2 if that matter, I do have the upgraded drivers with the remote and that didn't seem to affect it. Its not a dirty disc or bad disc, and the ps2 isn't dirty. It only skips on certain movies and it skips on the exact same place everytime. It did it to me on a brand new copy of Blade II, I took it back for another brand new copy and it skipped in the same way at the exact same place. It skips on minority report as well, I can't remember what other ones it skips on, but when I was researching the problem ppl had posted the dvd's it did this on and it was the same ones I had problems with. Maybe its just the older ps2's? I'm not really sure, but I made sure the disc and player were clean and upgraded the drivers to try to fix this and nothing seemed to help. Any other ideas?

#14 of 17 OFFLINE   MoG

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Posted October 08 2003 - 06:20 PM

Has anyone tried DVD+R, +RW, -R, and/or -RW's in the PS2 PLUS's?

Also, anyone have a link to a pic of the ps2+? I'm wondering if the dimensions are the same and if the network adapter is included.

Thanks.

#15 of 17 OFFLINE   Frank@N

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Posted October 09 2003 - 02:30 AM

Quote:
made sure the disc and player were clean and upgraded the drivers to try to fix this and nothing seemed to help.


Sounds like you might benefit from the $79 upgrade fee and then dump that flaky unit off on someone else.

Also since the new PS2 supports prog video, you could continue to use it even after you upgrade your TV.

#16 of 17 OFFLINE   Frank@N

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Posted October 09 2003 - 02:37 AM

I believe the shell casing is almost identical in size.

We've seen this before, the PS1 kept it's old shell casing during the many hardware consolidations which left it mostly empty on the inside.

Later they renamed it and shrunk the casing by 50%.

Anyway the new PS2 is much lighter, but the casing remains the same...for now.

#17 of 17 OFFLINE   Frank@N

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Posted October 09 2003 - 02:46 AM

Network adapter is not included with the PS2+.

But you can buy it separately for $30.

Early word from Sony was that the Network bundle *would* ship with PS2+ units, but that's not what happened.

After this 'no show', I was starting to wonder if the + would ever appear at all.

I feel sorry for anyone that jumped on the Network bundle and is now stuck with a (new) old PS2.





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