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                       Import gaming with PS-X-Change  Faq V.1.1


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1. Legal
2. Version History
3. A brief overview
4. Operating        
5. Pal Owners club?
6. Troubleshooting
7. The list so far
8. Running PSX Change under emulation
9. Credits
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1. Legal
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This guide is not to be copied, published, uploaded onto websites, or published
in print without getting express permission from the author.  You can reach me 
through the address at the bottom of this FAQ.  
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2. Version History
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24/1/2004
Wrote up the first four headings and did basic proofreading of the text. 

25/1/2004   
Finished the main topics and conducted yet more proofreading.

26/1/2004
Amended my information on the PSOne version, and added more links to my Credits
list. Also added copyright information and tightened some paragraphs.   

22/7/2004
New info, means a couple of updates to the main text and a whole new section.

24/7/04
Make that two new sections.

25/8/04
Another slight alteration this time, a rearrangement if you will in order to 
make things clearer and so the formatting fits the line limit. 
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3. A Brief Overview
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What is PS-X-Change and just what does it do. This is the main reason I wanted 
to do a FAQ on this product. All the information on the net was too brief, and
does not come from a Pal region perspective. 

The PS-X-Change negates the need for a Modchip to be installed in your 
Playstation or PSOne console.  It is a bootdisk for use on these consoles.
The final thing I will note before diving in at the deep end, is that this FAQ 
covers both editions of the PS-X-Change, even though I only own the earlier 
version of this software.  There are also versions for both Pal and Ntsc 
systems, make sure you get the right version thats specific to your region. 
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4. Operating
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PS-X-Change allows you to play import games (even those that have Mod chip 
detection code on them) on a standard Playstation.  You get a DVD case with a 
spring, a sticky tab and the actual boot disk.  

It works like this, by propping open the lid of the Playstation you can use the 
code stored on the CD provided to load its own BIOS code and stop the CD drives 
motor. An import game can then be loaded in totally bypassing the original 
region code.  

PS-X-Change 2 allows you to insert anti mod chip codes/Action replay codes and
acts as a CD version of the cheat disk.

The basic instructions for PSX SCPH1000 - 9002 Hardware iterations
                    
Take the disc out of the box and open your Playstations lid.

You will see a small point on the under side of the lid. Wedge the spring onto
this and put the other end on the small button (o) directly under it. This will
keep the lid open, otherwise the Boot CD stalls when it comes to disk swapping.
If you lose the spring simply substitute the inside of a ballpoint pen and then
insert it nib first into the notch in the lid's top side and wedge the other
end down on the button.

Place the Bootdisk onto the drive and switch on.  After the Sony diamond screen
and the PS logo screens come up it should revert to a black screen with a
message telling you to "Insert import game and press start".

After doing this the game should load.


Basic instructions for PSOne owners

Follow the basic instructions for above, but instead of using a spring to keep 
the lid button pressed down, there is a sticky tab included with PS-X-Change 1
and 2, that functions the same as the spring. Simply keep the lid open button 
down and insert the tab into the small gap by the button itself.  Release the 
lid open button and put in the boot disk and switch on.  Simply follow the on
screen instructions and swap the game when prompted. 

If your game is one of those with Mod chip detection on it, you can insert codes
to override this.  Pressing select allows you to access the code screen, using 
circle or triangle button to input codes, select allows you to imput more codes
to the maximum of 30. Start gets you back to the import game screen.

PS-X-Change will not allow you to swap disks once the game has loaded in. Fine
if you want to play single disk games such as Tekken 3 or Final Fantasy Tactics.
Not so fine if you wish to play double or quadruple disk games.  

However there is a way around this.  If the game allows you to save your game 
and then swap then simply save and switch off.  Reboot your Playstation with 
the bootdisk and put in disk 2 when prompted instead of the original disk.
It should read your saved game file off of the second disk.

If your game does not allow you to save before swapping disks then you are out
of luck.  There is no way to swap disks when that happens you game will display
a wrong disk error message.  
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5. Pal Owners club?
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This information is for Pal region gamers, it will not help those running on a
NTSC TV system.

So why is this topic here.  Because there are more troubles ahead when playing a
game once you've loaded it in from PS-X-Change. 

So, what can happen then?

The game plays normally for a couple of minutes and then you get a rolling 
picture. Regardless of the picture quality it will be in black and white whether
rolling or not.

What causes this.

Its your TV's fault, import games require a 60HZ display to work, if you do not 
have a 60HZ compatible television then the above will happen.

The good news is that most TV's made in the last 5 years support a 60HZ screen
as do all new televisions.

How can I tell if my TV supports this and if it doesn't is there anything I 
can do.

Switch your TV and leave it for awhile. Set up the bootdisk as normal and add 
the import game and see if the screen image starts to roll. If your 
Playstation is connected via a SCART lead then your display will be in colour.
If it connected via a RF cable then it will be in black and white.  If the on
screen image rolls i.e flickers badly then it is not compatible and the game is
barely playable.

Unlike Dreamcast games, there are no Pal Playstation games with a 60HZ option
to easily check your televisions compatibility before hand.  
 
Below are some tips to help you gain some time before the image rolls.

Switching off for about a minute and then switching your TV back on will gain
you some extra time (about a minute or so before it reverts to rolling).
Start up your Playstation with the boot disk, without turning your TV on will
also gain you about ten minutes before the rolling picture starts.

Of course if you are willing to put up with this then doing following things
are probably your best bets.

Get a new Television !!! (a drastic last resort)

Make sure you got the right region version of PS-X-Change. (PS-X-Change 2 only)

If you own more than one television try your Playstation and PS-X-Change out
on all of them. If you get a stable black and white image then it should be
OK to play.

Read up in your instruction manual to see if your TV supports 60HZ as 
standard, if it doesn't then you will be only able to play CDR copies of Pal 
region games instead of imports (back ups you legally own I hope).  If you have
a stable black and white image then buying a Playstation SCART lead is your
next step.  

Replacing the Playstations RF lead for an SCART lead, will make the import game
play in colour and will brighten up home region games.  Most come with an extra
lead that will let you hook it up to a HiFi unit to allow for surround sound.
I got mine in Game for 5.  If you have a recent / new TV, then plugging the 
SCART lead into the back of the TV and then into the AV port of your 
Playstation should allow you to play your imports without the screen rolling.
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6. Troubleshooting
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Q. There is a message in either English/Japanese saying this game won't run 
because its detected a modchip.

A. You can bypass this by inputting codes on the boot screen of PS-X-Change 2

Q. Do multi disk games like Metal Gear Solid or Final Fantasy 7 work with the 
PS-X-Change.

A. Most double disk games should work.  If the disk allows you to save before
swapping then yes. You simply save, switch off your Playstation and boot up 
with the Boot disk. Use the disk it asked for instead of disk one and you 
should be OK.

Q. But my multi disk game won't allow me to save before swapping / switching
off

A. There is nothing you can do, some games do not allow you to save the game
before requiring you switch disks.  Switching disks is something the 
PS-X-Change cannot handle.  If you do swap them you get error incorrect disk.
This is a downer especially if your playing something that will not let you 
save such as Valkyrie Profile. :(   

Q. What is a SCART socket?

A. A SCART socket is a 21 pin socket that allows you to connect some electronic
items to a television set.  It looks like this  -----------
                                                \""""""""""| 
                                                 \"""""""""|
                                                   --------
It generally improves picture quality as well as allowing import consoles to run
on a Pal television.

Q. Where can I get a PS-X-Change from

A. Most online retailers sell Version 2 for about 15 - 19.  You would pay this
price at a game import shop as well. Game does not stock this as its not an
official product.  

Q. Is there a version for my system.

A. There is a version of PS-X-Change 2 for either Pal or NTSC standards.

Q. Is PS-X-Change legal

A. No its of dubious legality, and is not authorised by Sony. See the credits
below to find out about how they came up with the original boot disk. 

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7. The all important game list
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So what doesn't work at the moment. Its a bit of a mystery, thanks to everyone 
that Emailed saying that their games work fine on a Pal set up.  Yeah its 
probably my TV that causes the flickering.  Anyway the full list is as follows.

Valkyrie Profile (USA) Flicker and double disk issues.
Valkyrie Profile (EURO) (B.A.D Hack) double disk issues.
Metal Slug X (JAP) Refuses to work without a memory card installed and has 
problems when it does. (5502 model only) 
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8. Running PSX Change under Emulation
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Incidentally I now use a emulator called PSXeven to run those games that 
PSX Change cannot.  Out of completion I would see if it would run PSX Change.

The result is a remarkable yes.  PSX Change works with PSXeven and gives no 
problems like I get from my television.  I haven't tried it out with other PS
emulators as they require a specific Bios image to run.  PSXeven is happy with
any PS Bios, though its not as compatible as EPSXE.

This is for completeness only, as the emulator is region free and doesn't 
require a boot disk to play it on.
EPSXE requires you know what your actual graphics / 3D card Drivers are before
running (or not running in my case) and requires a specific BIOS image
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9. Credits
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Thanks Sony for producing the original Playstation. 

Major thanks go to www.ntsc-uk.Com. Their FAQ explains the whole Pal issue
much better than I could and provides useful Links to game importers.

Please read Carlos M's Game enhancer Plus FAQ on gamefaqs.  There is a passage
in it that basically explains the whole genesis of how they created the whole 
boot disk thing, and why the whole boot disk is legally dodgy.

www.gamefaqs.com for all the best info / guides.

A Range of emulators can be got from WWW.Zophar.net.  Don't ask me about Bios 
images or ROMS, use GOOGLE.  Incidentally your official / unofficial PS games
will work with the emulator just fine. (no need to download huge ISO files)

Thanks to joncoles for the PAL knowledge and Hawkbul for the Metal Slug X 
entry.

Can you fill in the gaps in my knowledge, especially about running double 
disk games that do not save before switching disks if so I would love to hear
from you.

We still require reader input, so get in touch below.

Contact Dogonabus@AOL.COM 
Copyright (C)2004 Adam Blackley.