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Issue with PS2 reading PS1 games

Posted: February 20th, 2018, 12:41 pm
by Alucard1191
Hello everyone,

My PS2 seems to have developed an issue. Games that I've been playing just fine are suddenly getting 'disc read errors' and are unable to run.

So far this has only happened with 2 PS1 games, but they're two I really like playing. Xenogears, which I'm working through and am over 30 hours into stopped reading last night, and a week ago Gran Turismo 2 stopped loading.

I haven't had this issue with any PS2 games, and both of these discs look fine. The PS2 still reads castlevania SOTN which is extremely scratched to hell. GT2 looks pristine by comparison.

Has anyone else experienced this? I'm thinking I might just need to take it apart and clean the PS2, but I have never done that before so I don't want to screw anything up.

Any suggestions? This happen to anyone else before? My PS2 usually runs great, this is very out of character for it.

Re: Issue with PS2 reading PS1 games

Posted: February 20th, 2018, 3:21 pm
by ESauce
Is this an original model “fat” PS2? If so, maybe cleaning the laser will hope but most likely you will need to open it up and adjust the level of the laser. I did this about 12 years ago. I googled it and I think I followed this exact guide: ... air-guide/

It is pretty fickle so you have to be patient. Mine wasn’t reading any discs and it got it working better but I recall I still had trouble with PS1 discs so I hope you have more luck than I did.

Re: Issue with PS2 reading PS1 games

Posted: February 20th, 2018, 5:25 pm
by Alucard1191
It is an original larger model. Though I think I might have a slim model in storage as a backup. And thanks for the guide, I'll give this a shot. It looks like I have all the tools other than a can of compressed air. I figured there was a way to fix this... that does look rather complicated though, maybe I'll try just swapping out to the slim first. (Feels like an idiot for some reason.)

Re: Issue with PS2 reading PS1 games

Posted: February 21st, 2018, 5:15 pm
by ESauce
I had never opened up a console before and I was able to do it, but it is tedious. If I were you I’d just play on my working system too.

Re: Issue with PS2 reading PS1 games

Posted: February 23rd, 2018, 9:46 am
by Rev
So I was reading this thread and I had to wonder... Do PS2's use different lasers to read the PS1 discs compared to the PS2 discs? For example, Blu Ray players often break (had several of them) that stop reading the blu ray discs but the DVDs work just fine. I wonder if this might be a similar issue.

I did some googling and this seems like a common occurrence. However, I didn't find any explanation for why this happened. Most simply said that it was a sign the laser was likely going to go out or it might be dirty.

Re: Issue with PS2 reading PS1 games

Posted: February 23rd, 2018, 10:32 am
by Retro STrife
While I unfortunately can't help much with how to repair this, I wanted to echo what Rev mentioned, that the "disc read error" issue is a pretty common one with the early model PS2s. Back when the PS2 was new, I recall there being a lot of controversy about this issue, because it happened too frequently and Sony did nothing about it. The frequency wasn't quite to the level of the 360's famous Red Rings of Death, but the PS2's "disc read error" was still significant enough to be gaming news back in the early 2000s. But it's strange to hear that some games work for you and some don't, since my understanding was that all games stopped working once the disc read error happened. Back then, I never heard of there being a way to fix the issue after it started happening.

I got the Red Rings, and fortunately Microsoft had a great policy about replacing those for 3 years after purchase, even if the warranty expired. Sony, on the other hand, stranded its customers and essentially told them to go buy a new one if the warranty was over. Some people claimed that you could strong-arm Sony into a replacement back then by threatening to go to the Better Business Bureau. Nowadays your best bet is probably just to revert to the backup PS2.. even if the issue was repairable, I imagine that it's not worth the hassle.

Re: Issue with PS2 reading PS1 games

Posted: February 25th, 2018, 10:26 am
by Luigi & Peach
I ran into this problem with my original PS2 model years ago. Although mine stopped reading the discs that had a dark-blue back to them. I wish I could tell you I researched an easy fix, but I just ended up buying a used slim model.