Playstation Classic vs a hacked PSTV – A quick comparison from a console hacker’s point of view. Should you fork out your cash for a dumbed down experience?
It is no doubt that most of us love the feeling of owning and using yet another electronic device or console. However, after the initial thrill of owning something new wears off, I sometimes ask myself “Could I have spent my money on something else that’s better?” and then I try to mentally justify my purchase even though I could do nothing about it…
General specifications of the Playstation Classic and PSTV
Sony’s upcoming Playstation Classic (which will cost $99.99) will include a total of 20 games but curiously enough only 5 game titles have been announced even though you can already pre-order it in some countries. In the box, you’ll get:
- The console itself (which is 45% smaller than the original PS1)
- An HDMI cable to connect it to your television
- 2 wired PS1 replica controllers without the analogue stick (because who needs wireless controllers and analogue sticks anyway?)
- Thankfully, local multiplayer is supported
- A USB cable but no AC adapter so you have to supply your own charger to use it
On the other side, we have the PSTV which is essentially a PlayStation Vita without a screen. The PSTV also retailed at $99 on launch but can be found on the used market for much less if you look around. In
terms of specifications, we’re dealing with:
- A quad-core CPU running at 444MHz but it can be overclocked to 494/500MHz
- 512MB RAM
- Wi-Fi, Ethernet and Bluetooth connectivity
- An HDMI port
- Support for both the DualShock 3 and 4 so you can play wirelessly with existing controllers – obviously, you need to buy a DS3/4 if you don’t own one already. A Vita memory card or SD2Vita are also required since you need somewhere to store your games since the internal 1GB provided isn’t enough for much
- Ability to play much more than 20 games and a hacking scene that’s produced countless great homebrew/hacks
Comparing the two
Without a doubt, the Playstation Classic requires much less time and effort to get up and running. This is because it’s a limited-use mini-console that will probably allow you to play the minute you plug it in. Other than its simplicity, the Playstation Classic could double as a great gift and a nice thing to look at near your television.
While the above reasons may be compelling to some, it must be noted that the Playstation Classic only has a limited set of uses. As a result, it won’t be the best way to get the most out of your money so considering the PSTV is a great idea. On top of the ability to play PS1 games (via Adrenaline), a hacked PSTV gives you the ability to:
- Play almost all Playstation Vita games by removing the game whitelist since many games don’t use PSVita-specific abilities like the touchscreen
- Contrary to popular belief, there are some great PSVita titles including Persona 4 Golden, Killzone Mercenary and Project Diva F
- Emulate a massive amount of consoles with great performance. These include the PSP, PS1, GBA, SNES, NES, Genesis, Arcade machines and Atari 2600 among others
- A large amount of open-source game ports including Quake 1-3, Half-Life, DOOM, Wolfenstein 3D, fan-made Zelda games and the original Prince of Persia among many others
- Other homebrew games including Tetromino (also has a Touhou edition), Sudoku, EUCLOID, Flood It, Zombiebound and more
- The ability to browse the internet while playing a game – this could prove useful if you’re looking for a walkthrough or cheats
- Other great features including the ability to double as an FTP server via VitaShell, twitter client through LiveTweet and even a 68k Mac via Basilisk II
When one looks at all these advantages of the PSTV, the worth of the PlayStation Classic is thrown into question. This is further exacerbated by the fact that, if you get creative, you can even do a PS1 decal for your PSTV to make it look like the Playstation Classic!
While the decision on what to purchase is ultimately yours, I personally think that it’s a no-brainer to get the PSTV. Remember that if you opt for the PSTV, it must be running firmware 3.68 or below as the current 3.69 firmware isn’t hackable.
If you’re still considering a Playstation Classic, I’d recommend you at least wait for the full list of games since the pack-in games might not interest you and you usually can’t add games to miniconsoles unless they’re hacked!