Which was your "neediest" device — hardest to keep working? Software fixes? DIY repair? Blowing on game cartridges?

Sony's Original $600 PlayStation 3Sony's Original PlayStation 3 (2006)

Technically, I bought mine in March 2007.  I also bought my first HDTV — Full 1080p.  A TiVo HD.  A bunch of Blu-ray movies and a few PS3 games.  And I replaced my old Panasonic 5.1-channel receiver (no HDMI inputs) with an Onkyo 7.1-channel receiver (3 HDMI inputs).

At first, I was in heaven...

Not only did the "OG" PS3 play the new "next-gen" games — it played all of my old PS2 games.  Thinking I don't need my PS2 Slim anymore, I prepared to sell it.  I transferred my game-saves, from the 2–3 memory modules I had, to my PS3's HDD — with a USB-adapter.  Then, off to GameStop — to trade the PS2 Slim for some more PS3 games.

I upgraded the Seagate 60 GB 5400 RPM 8 MB-cache HDD to a Hitachi 320 GB 7200 RPM 16 MB-cache HDD.

I also installed Yellow Dog Linux 5 (PPC/PPC64) in "Other OS".  It was a neat trick, but virtually useless.  The PS3 only had 256 MB RAM.

I even bought a 1 TB External HDD, for system backups. 1st used to backup the 60 GB HDD.  And then restore that backup to the 320 GB HDD.

And I watched my first 1080p movie: Casino Royale (2006).

Heaven doesn't last...

Just 2 years after I bought it, I started having some problems.  Although I cleaned it with compressed air, every few months, the fan would ramp up to a loud whine after just 20 minutes of game-play.  The original PS3's Cell Broadband Engine was fabricated using a 90 nm process.  Because of the form-factor of the case and the layout of components, the heat-sink and fan were mounted underneath the processors and motherboard.

Cooling the RSX Reality Synthesizer — the PS2 chip — was not an issue.  But, the 90-nm-node Cell BE produced a lot of heat.  To help dissipate heat from the CBE, Sony used silver-based solder.  Silver is an excellent thermal conductor.  Silver-based solder, however, has a lower melting-point than lead-based solder.

And the Cell Broadband Engine was mounted upside down.

The descent into hell...

I had never heard of "the yellow light of death" (YLOD).  I was unaware that I should leave my PS3 on — idling — for 20 minutes before shutdown.  That would allow the fan to cool most of the melted silver-based solder — so it solidifies — before the shutdown parks the HDD, the optical drive, and the fan.  Otherwise, the abrupt stop of spinning components can jolt the solder away from the pins and contacts on the Cell BE and its motherboard socket.

Then gravity does the rest — because it is mounted upside down.

YLOD research and DIY repair...

Since a picture is worth a thousand words, here are the videos I found — and used — to complete D!Y repair on my PS3 a dozen times: 2009–2012.  I also replaced the optical drive — twice — when I could no longer DIY the original optical drive.

Eventually, the optical drive controller — which is paired with the motherboard for DRM (Digital Rights Management) — failed in a way that I was unable/unwilling to repair.  My original PS3 still works as a digital media player.  But, without the paired optical drive controller, I cannot play any games on it — not even the downloaded games on the HDD.

  • imac 2007 had to replace hard drive at least one

  • Obviously, Apple is my 2nd choice.  My Macs are too challenging, too expensive, and too not-worth-it to attempt DIY repair.  Unlike my original PS3.

    There was a happy ending (sort of) — I replaced the original PS3 with a PS3 Slim, in 2012.  It has never broken.  I played on it last weekend.

  • I'll go with Retron 5.   It worked great till the Super NES connectors failed, then the remote was acting up....

  • Huh. Cool. This month my Conversation is related to this. Apple exhibiting human decency for once. (Corporations are humans) Supporting everyone's (+) Right to Repair | Lenovo Gaming (US), only valid in California.

  • Well I fixed a ps3 controller with drift using rudimentary tools and I felt proud of myself.

    I had my first laptop which wasn't really great but was enough. It fell off my hands and started to have issues: it overheated and turned off whenever it wanted. I tried to fix it for years, handing it to specialists in the matter but they all said it had no solving. 2 years ago a fixer was my last hope and he fixed it completely. However, I already had another laptop so I sold it.

    December last year I add another ram stick to my Legion 5, not that it wasn't working but it was so little ram. In the process the laptop didn't turn on and my heart was racing, I thought I messed it up. Turns out it was only the battery cable that was plugged in the wrong way. I don't remember any other time I tried to fix anything.

  • Probably would be the Xbox 360, still has the original proprietary HDD, always a chance for the red ring of death, requires a wired ethernet connection to log online. 

  • Hey,  .  Have you seen this post from kunal v. (2 hours after yours):

    I'll go with Retron 5.   It worked great till the Super NES connectors failed, then the remote was acting up....
    I'll go with Retron 5.   It worked great till the Super NES connectors failed, then the remote was acting up....
    I'll go with Retron 5.   It worked great till the Super NES connectors failed, then the remote was acting up....

    That's my attempt to quote this reply (link will open in new tab or window).  Quoting kunal v.'s reply, quotes your reply, for some reason.  WTF??? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

  • I sort of feel your pain. I always enjoyed gaming growing up and through college but to be honest in college I only played the newer systems at friends who had them with COD or roomates. I wasn't going to have my system stolen from a party or ruined from a beer spill from some drunk person. In the living room we always had a old N64 or sometimes people would have Nintendo or someone would have a PS4 or XBox or even a PS3. In my own room I did bring myself a PS2 but PS3 was being phased out when I was in school I believe around 2007-2012 (5 year plan lol). When I graduated I got myself a PS4 after years of not playing because I missed it and the PS2 was wayyy out of date. I got it and not having friends over or family I never really played it much until recently I got online again and got a couple of COD games. I don't find as much enjoyment anymore but I notice now that PS4 is probably going to be phased out when I could afford it at a Black Friday Deal and now that I"m starting to play it again. Soon enough PS6 will come out if it hasn't already lol and PS4 will be completley obsolete. I always feel like I'm a generation behind as I am but the cool thing is that you can play older games on newer systems and being in the SMART era, updating is pretty seemless though on my basic PS4 with like 500 gig to 1 terabyte it's really only large enough these days for somewhere between 5-10 games. I finally just got a Extended Hard Drive to use that is a 4 terabyte so me not being a gamer and it being adaptable to PS5 and you can play games straight from it as well as PS5 it should hopefully last me forever or until one day I get a PS5. I eventually sold my N64 to some young 18yr kid heading off to college and I sold it for like $85 mostly complete with one controller not two and one game. It was better than sitting and not getting played to me.

  • Handled it...lol

  • Crazy, I can't actually come up with an answer for this lol.