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P L A Y S T A T I O N   2
Adjusting the PS2 Laser Unit
by Mr. B / DNA Designs
- [File]
Introduction
There are many FAQs regarding adjusting the PS/2 laser unit in the messageboards (greetings fly out to www.ps2.nu and www.xianaix.com !). Sony seems to adjust the LU too careful (not to say weak like they do on the 900x PS1 models nowadays !), so that the LU has a longer life expectance but the PS has problems reading some DVDs or game discs (backups ?).

The guys at www.gamefreax.de have published a very vague tutorial on how to get this problem fixed. Turning adjustable resistors, memorizing their original position and turning back if the situation got worse is a time expensive and nerve wracking method.

So here's how to do it in a nerve saving way:

Needed Tools
Compulsory:
  1. Oscilloscope (at least 20 Mhz bandwidth!)
  2. 10:1 Scope testprobe with clamp
  3. a set of presicion screwdrivers (like the ones for repairing clocks)
  4. Philips screwdriver (for removing the PS2 cover)
  5. your PS2 utility disc (comes along with your console) and a DVD movie
  6. knowledge on how to use that stuff ... (esp. the oscilloscope !)

Optional:
  1. Small piece of thin, isolated wire and a solder iron

If you don't have one of the tools above (esp. 1, 2 ) ask somebody who can lend it to you (TV repair shops ..), if you lack of [6] then ask somebody who is familiar with this (again TV repair shops...).

Dissassembly
Note: If you disassemble and modify your PS2 you will lose warranty.

The following procedures should only be done by skilled persons with the console unplugged from the mains. If you aren´t sure if you can do this ask somebody who´s familiar with this kind of work !!!

Furthermore be extremely careful while doing the adjustments as there are no spare parts !!! :(

  • Remove the bottom and top cover by removing the screws under the small plastic/rubber covers
  • Remove the metal rfi-shielding at the bottom (pcb) side.
  • Unplug the flat wire band from the drive connector by lifting off the clamping bridge (carefully!!!)
  • Turn the machine around and dismount the drive by removing the two screws holding it.
  • Turn the machine back to the bottom side and plug the wire band back to the connector.
  • Place the drive that you can access the drawer, without bending the flat wire band (I put it on the pcb, isolated with a sheet of paper and „up-side-down“ to get access to the adjustable resistors).
Hooking up the Oscilloscope
Connect your probe to the TP and GND. I soldered a small piece of wire to that pad and connected the probe via the clamp, this is safe and replaces the „third hand“ you would need to hold the probe while adjusting the laser and holding the drive. Set your oscilloscope to 20mV/Sect. and 0.2us/Sect.
Click to Enlarge
Performing the Adjustments
Power up the PS2 and insert the PS2 utility disc.

You should now see the „eye-pattern“ signal (as below) on your scope. Wait until the disc is completely booted to get a stable picture on your scope


Click to Enlarge
Turn the resistor marked `CD` clockwise until you get the maximum undistorted „eye-pattern“ (if you want more safety and a longer life of your laser then turn back a bit so the laser doesn´t light at full power).  
Click to Enlarge
If you get a distorted signal just turn back a bit until it becomes stable and clear!
Click to Enlarge
If you get a distorted signal just turn back a bit until it becomes stable and clear !
Ok, now the CD section is adjusted so replace the utility disc with the DVD and reset the console.

Now do the same adjustments as above but use the variable resistor marked `DVD` this time.

Safe Tested Values
Mode DVD CD
Oscilloscope setting 20mV / 0.2us per Section 20mV / 0.2us per Section
„Eye-Pattern“ signals´ amplitude (A) set to 800mV Vpp 640 mV Vpp
Disclaimer

The information contained herein is provided as-is. No warranties of any kind are expressed or implied; use of this information is solely the responsibility of the persons accessing this document. The author will neither assume responsibility for illegal or other misuse of the information contained herein nor damage done to humans, animals, plants or facilities (including your PS/2 !).

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