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Portables (Games) PlayStation (Games)

Sony PSP Defects Reported 439

Among many to report on this issue, OneHungLo writes "GamesAreFun.com is reporting that several defective PSP units have been shipped, suffering from problems such as dead pixels, broken UMD drives, air bubbles in the screens, dust in the screens, and the analog "nubs" not working, or actually falling off. They also have a video of a UMD popping out of the PSP as it's running, due to the unit being twisted/turned. I wonder how long it will be until Sony issues an official statement about this?"
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Sony PSP Defects Reported

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  • Playstation 2 (Score:3, Interesting)

    by damicatz ( 711271 ) on Tuesday December 14, 2004 @02:09PM (#11083079)
    Didn't the new Playstation 2 also have defects?
    • Re:Playstation 2 (Score:4, Informative)

      by mordors9 ( 665662 ) on Tuesday December 14, 2004 @02:24PM (#11083252)
      We had a problem with our PS2. I have to give Sony credit. They had us ship the old one to them and had it repaired and back to us in a matter of weeks. They were very courteous on the phone and made everything easy for us.
      • Re:Playstation 2 (Score:5, Insightful)

        by SoCalChris ( 573049 ) on Tuesday December 14, 2004 @02:45PM (#11083482) Journal
        That sounds pretty lousy to me.

        They should have shipped you a new one right away, and had you ship in your old one. They could even take a hold on your credit card for the new one until your old one was received.

        To me, not being able to use a brand new item for weeks is totally unacceptable.
        • Funny, that. Nintendo is doing advance replaces for friggin' dead pixels on the DS right now.

        • To me, not being able to use a brand new item for weeks is totally unacceptable.

          The worst part about waiting for an entertainment item is that the customer's enthusiasm is easily defeated. Imagine being all hyped up about a console, spending several hundred dollars on the console, games, and accessories, only to be left embarrased having to go to a friends house. Entertainment is such a fickle industry that either Sony doesn't care (what's a few lost customers) or they don't understand.
          • Re:Playstation 2 (Score:3, Interesting)

            by Dogtanian ( 588974 )
            The worst part about waiting for an entertainment item is that the customer's enthusiasm is easily defeated. Imagine being all hyped up about a console, spending several hundred dollars on the console, games, and accessories, only to be left embarrased having to go to a friends house.

            See; the let-down occurs *after* Sony get your hard-earned cash. So unless someone makes a stink, why should Sony care?

            They won't lose customers unless the disgruntled purchasers complain loudly enough in the right places
      • You shouldn't give sony credit for that... A good response for sony would have been to over-night you a box to ship it back in. Then, as soon as they get word of it hitting the tracking system, over-night you a new replacement.

        That's what apple did when my iPod died. What you describe is barely acceptable support.

        • Re:Playstation 2 (Score:3, Informative)

          by Phisbut ( 761268 )
          That's what apple did when my iPod died. What you describe is barely acceptable support.

          I totally agree. I once bought a HP printer from the store, and it went defect about 2 weeks later. When I called HP to tell them, they shipped me a new printer through Purolator right away and asked me to give the broken printer to the delivery guy when I received the new one, which I did about 48 hours later. That is good service.

      • Re:Playstation 2 (Score:4, Interesting)

        by SetupWeasel ( 54062 ) on Tuesday December 14, 2004 @03:46PM (#11084250) Homepage
        A DS was fixed in 4 days. [gaminghorizon.com]

        Nintendo payed for shipping, and the man sent it out on November 29, just 8 days after release.

        This kind of service you get with Nintendo for one dead pixel.
    • Re:Playstation 2 (Score:2, Interesting)

      by BigDogCH ( 760290 )
      The first wave of the Original Playstations (now PSone), a long long long time ago, were very defective as well. I was one of the idiots who rushed out and spend $300 on one, just to find out it failed after only an hour of use. I was told that the entire first batch from one of the plants was bad. Whatever that means. Sony was great about it though! They had a courrier drop a LOANER off the next day, and pick up my old one (it actually said LOANER on the reciept he gave me, and I was told it was tempo
    • Yes, there are instances with the laser or some kind fo laser diode (whatever that is) burning out.

      It has no HD, and it still uses USB 1.1 ports. Not very good. But at least you can pick up an older version cheap!
      • Really, its harsh to blame Sony for lasers dying - the Dreamcast had the same problem, and the contacts on cartridge-fed systems like the N64 start to go with time too (but you can clean those). With the prices these things go at its no suprise that there'll be problems.

        I think people just wet themselves so bad over the DS and are so miffed at Sony for the whole RIAA thing that any bad news about Sony's flagship product is frontpage-worthy.
  • by antifoidulus ( 807088 ) on Tuesday December 14, 2004 @02:10PM (#11083090) Homepage Journal
    That slashdot gets a psp icon? Kind of strange having the ps2 controller and the gameboy represent the psp....
  • Sony Quality? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jellomizer ( 103300 ) * on Tuesday December 14, 2004 @02:11PM (#11083102)
    Sony use to be known for the quality of their products. With mistakes like this and running to save costs will hurt them in the long run. After a while I will rather get my Sorney or a Genuine Penophonix version which has better quality.
    • Have you actually owned any Sony equipment for any real period of time? Everything I have ever had that was stamped with a Sony logo on it has died an early death. Receiver: acquired a constant low buzzing sound. Phone (T68i): the "Yes" button no longer works even remotely reliably, making it very difficult to use. TV remote: buttons no longer work even remotely reliably. Also my Mom has a Sony TV that has a terrible high-pitched squeal. Fortunately for her she can't hear it! Sony quality? Needless to say,
      • The Monitor for my Ultra 10 has Sony Guts in it. And it worked fine.
      • I've never had great luck with most sony equipment. However, when buying ES audio equipment or their WEGA lines of TV's, the quality is much improved. And these products usually have the warranty to back it up.
        • My Wega is now fuzzy in the lower right corner, and the cable tuner one day started getting snowy on channels above 30-something.

          There is only a 1 year warrenty on the Wega and my only developed these problems after about 18 months.

          I am never buying another Sony product. Well maybe things from the Playstation line, but there I don't have much choice if there is a game I want to play.
          • It's sad to know that the WEGA line is no longer very good. Is there a higher line above the WEGA, one that is only sold in specialty shops?

            It used to be pretty easy with Japanese electronics. There was a line that was sold at the regular shops and a line that was sold in high end shops. You paid more but got a better product, a longer warranty, and much improved build quality. I've been out of the consumer electronics loop for a while, but I don't recall having any problems with the high end stuff f
      • My hi-fi stereo system is ten years old and still working perfectly (my PC is plugged to it, it's better and louder than small speakers). I don't know what are the problems with PS1/2 and PSP but in Europe one of the highest quality brand for electronic equipment IS Sony! When I see what kind of problems people have with their "european" branded equipment, I'm glad to buy Sony stuff.
      • I have a Sony Trintron that's over 10 years old at my parents house for their second TV, I have a Sony discman that I probably use 6-8 hours a week for the last 3 years, I have a Sony 5 disc DVD/CD player for about 20 months now, I have a Sony Walkman that's about 20 years old (it's huge!), and I have a Sony portable stereo which has played CD's for me 8 hours a day every workday for the last 3 years. I have had zero problems with all of those devices.

        My father as has on old Betamax that also works just fi

    • Sony hasn't been known for quality since the 80s. In particular the majority of their CD players have long-term issues with the laser unit. Sony's draw is the amount of functionality offered for a reasonably low price. My sony receiver is nowhere near the best around but it's got 80x5 discrete channels, coax and optical digital, and eight inputs. You can get them these days with a full set of speakers for $175 or so, I paid $500 in 2003 or so for that kind of kit. They're still decent products, as are their
    • Yeah, I've had bad luck with Sony stuff for a while now. Nothing lasts, and I won't buy it anymore. I'm getting the Carnivalè instead.
    • by drew ( 2081 )
      Pfft. I know a genuine Panaphonics when I see it. And look, there's Magnetbox and Sorny.
  • by Tackhead ( 54550 ) on Tuesday December 14, 2004 @02:11PM (#11083103)
    > and the analog "nubs" not working, or actually falling off.

    I hate when that happens. So much for the nipple being the only natural interface.

  • Wow, based on all the slashdot articles I can concolude that Sony can't make any decent products anymore. First I learn that the new HDD walkman is junk, and now the PSP is junk.

    Actually, the walkman review was just someone's opinion whereas this article points out the FACTS that the PSPs are breaking.

    • The only Sony product of very high build quality that i can think of is the second-gen Minidisc players (solid aluminium casing and mechanisim). I have one and love it. As for the rest, i agree...
    • "Wow, based on all the slashdot articles I can concolude that Sony can't make any decent products anymore. First I learn that the new HDD walkman is junk, and now the PSP is junk."

      It depends ... the consumer stuff that Sony makes certainly is overpriced crap IMO. The high end pro stuff that Sony sells is overpriced, but performs well and lives long. How do you tell which product you're buying? The good stuff is "Made in Japan." The consumer crap is made in China, Taiwan, Malaysia, Indonesia or Mexico.

      In

    • The first playstation had issues (ever met anyone who had to turn their unit upsidedown?), the playstation 2 had issues, the NEW playstation 2 has issues...

      Do not buy new sony products! By the second/third gen! They're usually cheaper, too. (for the record: My PS2 has been operating on its side for 2-3 years with no problem; I heard that running then sideways was the kiss-of-death for the first ones)
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 14, 2004 @02:11PM (#11083111)
    Version 1.0 of product xxx has problems!
  • by francisew ( 611090 ) on Tuesday December 14, 2004 @02:12PM (#11083122) Homepage
    Isn't buying a 1st gen. protable electronics device just begging for this kind of trouble?
    Why poeple buy bleeding edge products is beyond me.
    • Its to be cool. And show it around to say look how Hip and Trendy I am. It is like why people spend $2000 back in the turn of the century to buy a 14" LCD Screen for there computer. Just to look cool
    • "In Japan" (h0 h0) devices usually come out before their U.S. counterparts so that last-minute refinements are made before we boorish Americans get them and start throwing them to people and shit like that.
      • ""In Japan" (h0 h0) devices usually come out before their U.S. counterparts so that last-minute refinements are made before we boorish Americans get them and start throwing them to people and shit like that."

        I wonder what the cultural connotations for things like this are in Japan. Do the Japanese have a higher tolerance for just accepting the defects than Europeans or North Americans? Would product with problems like this do better in Japan than in the US?

    • Isn't buying a 1st gen. protable electronics device just begging for this kind of trouble?
      Why poeple buy bleeding edge products is beyond me.


      I don't understand this mentality. Why would buying a product that's presumably been tested and deemed ready for the marketplace be "begging for trouble", whatever "generation" it is?

      In fact, going back through history you can find just as many examples where the first generation of something is built significantly better than the later generations. The Atari VCS, for example; the early models had 1/4" thick plastic and actual metal armor plating on the bottom of the casing - later models had much thinner plastic and no armor plating, they were much more prone to cracking.

      I don't see why portables need to be any different. Companies build products, they market test them, and then they put them out there. The public is not a bunch of beta testers; they're supposed to be building in certain tolerances and you would hope that if they're going to err, they'll err on the side of caution (as Atari did with the early VCS).

      I guess my point is twofold:

      a) Our expectations for "first generation" products these days are too low, and
      b) I think it's just as likely as not that later generation models will be worse as it is that they'll be better. You can't just look at the PS2 and Xbox as representative as the entire history of home and portable electronics; many devices do become less reliable as their production costs are cut back to save money down the line.

      I have no idea if these PSP defects are widespread or if they're isolated incidents. There does seem to be a pattern, though, that suggests that in general, the PSP's build quality is probably not quite as good as many had expected, and I doubt that's ever going to change. Sony does not really have a history of redesigning products to be tougher. If there's an actual defect in the laser mechanism or something like that, then yes, they may do a minor redesign to correct errors (as they did with the PS2), but build quality is a different issue. They're not going to start using thicker plastic or reinforcing the unit with carbonized steel or do away with the "analog" nub - build quality issues are probably issues you'll just have to learn to live with. I'm sure Sony would tell you to just be more careful with the PSP.

      As for the dead pixel issue, it's always a possibility in an LCD-based product, especially one with a fairly high-resolution display like this. You'd hope the warranty and/or return policy would cover it, but I guess the supply is such that stores in Japan are not accepting returns right now because of it. I doubt this problem is more widespread than on other LCD-based devices, though - this is a screen made by Sharp, which is one of the world's largest LCD producers. It's not as if they don't have experience making LCD displays.
  • Evidence (Score:2, Informative)

    by bi11 ( 456910 )
    (2) Flying Disk System (design error and/or manufacturing defect)
    http://www.asahi-net.or.jp/~cf6y-oot/umd/fly_004.a vi [asahi-net.or.jp]
    http://www.asahi-net.or.jp/~cf6y-oot/umd/fly_005.a vi [asahi-net.or.jp]
  • its simple (Score:5, Interesting)

    by asv108 ( 141455 ) <asv@@@ivoss...com> on Tuesday December 14, 2004 @02:13PM (#11083127) Homepage Journal
    If you choose to buy the first release of any consumer electronic, you are playing Russian roulette, especially with portable electronics such as (game handhelds and mp3 players). Not that a stern warning will deter the mindless herds from waiting outside of electronic retail conglomerates in the cold, in order to buy a product at the highest possible retail price.
    • You're being euphemistic.

      It's called *stupidity* and companies just make money off these morons.
    • If these "mindless herds" did buy them some of these problems would never come out. Whatever happend to quality control and testing.
    • If you choose to buy the first release of any consumer electronic, you are playing Russian roulette

      yeah... but sometimes you get lucky, and get in on a product before they lock out some cool explotable feature, or you get one of the early sony camcorders with supposed X-ray abilities! [esato.com]

  • I wonder how long it will be until Sony issues an official statement about this
    My guess is a fair while longer than it takes for the webserver hosting that video to pop
  • Because Japan now offshores their stuff to China.
    This is China's revenge for WWII...

  • by iapetus ( 24050 ) on Tuesday December 14, 2004 @02:15PM (#11083157) Homepage
    Some of them have already been debunked as fakes. Others are real enough, including the flying UMDs and dead pixels (though that seems to be an issue on just about any similar device - DS suffered from these as well, for example).
  • by GearType2 ( 614552 ) on Tuesday December 14, 2004 @02:19PM (#11083189)
    I've seen the video... and read the articles... but I still don't believe it that much. Dead Pixels I believe. Even the DS has this problem(as did the GBA and GBASP). But I have yet to see anyone report problems of the nubs not working or their psp not turning on except on this one small site linking to another small site.
    If this is an issue, I put it in the barrel of consumers causing the problem, or just being a very small number of people, below 1%.
    The UMD popping out, seems a little odd. Twisting the unit, I can understand, I mean, it's a small portable device, I could do the same with my old walkman. But during normal play? I doubt it.
  • Sony = crap (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Le Marteau ( 206396 ) * on Tuesday December 14, 2004 @02:19PM (#11083190) Journal
    Sony used to have a good reputation in the electronics business. They built their business on quality.

    Now, like many businesses, they are in it for the short term profits. They build for the latest fads, with the latest dumbass useless 'features' the 'bling bling' crowd is looking for. They now build hardware aiming for people who are attracted to flashy shiny things rather than people who want qualty.

    Mod me down, but for their consumer grade stuff, it's true.
  • and whoever linked to a video on the main page should be shot
  • Oranges to Oranges (Score:5, Insightful)

    by American AC in Paris ( 230456 ) * on Tuesday December 14, 2004 @02:19PM (#11083195) Homepage
    Company A releases a sweet little handheld gaming system in time for Christmas. The system is truly innovative and well-designed. The system has a few issues, but for the most part it meets or exceeds most people's expectataions.

    Company B releases a sweet little handheld gaming system in time for Christmas. The system isn't particularly revolutionary; its biggest selling point is that it features very powerful components for a handheld system. The system has a variety of issues, several of which should have been caught in the design/development phase.

    Which of these systems would you rather own?

  • Well, all other reasons aside, looks like Nintendo may rake in the market share just by having better initial quality.
  • by Wakkow ( 52585 ) * on Tuesday December 14, 2004 @02:21PM (#11083218) Homepage
    Here's some screenshots from the video, in case it gets slashdotted:

    |O|

    |O|
  • Made in china, by children, for children.

    With the savings put into quality control ;)

  • by tji ( 74570 ) on Tuesday December 14, 2004 @02:24PM (#11083246)
    Isn't this basically what many Japanese companies do? They get the product to beta quality, then do a limited release in the Japanese market. They work out the bugs there, then have a much better quality product for the international release.

    The only difference here is that the PSP is so well known that they can't keep the status quiet. People here find out about it, and write comments as if the PSP was a product they could go purchase at Best Buy. It's not... and by the time it is, the PSP will be very high quality.
  • This really scares me, I am to spend 200 dollars on a unit of this magnitude, I wish for it to at least take some wear and tear. My DS so far, has taken a careful beating, and I was hoping that when the PSP releases, it can take the same. The one thing I do like about Nintendo is that they are like Fisher-Price in product design. But with reports like this, I don't know if I should invest in a product that when bought requires replacement. I have been there already with Sony, which not to go there again. (P
  • by Jagasian ( 129329 ) on Tuesday December 14, 2004 @02:29PM (#11083306)
    My GBA SP hasn't had any problems, is inexpensive, gets great battery life, is very small and portable, and has a huge library of fun games. Meanwhile the two new kids on the block (DS and PSP) have problems, are expensive, get crappy battery life, are large and don't easily fit in your pocket, and don't have very many games for them.

    Especially when you consider a GBA SP plus a flash cart for storing multiple games, the portability of the GBA SP is above and beyond anything that the two new kids on the block can pretend to be.
    • As someone who owns both an SP and a DS ... I can say I like them both. The DS battery life isn't really an issue unless you're gonna be in a car for say 8hrs straight.

      I bring my [DS] with me to school and what not and play 10 mins here or there throughout the day. The battery never dies [I charge it when I get home]. Granted the SP is bit easier to hold and has a better life for car rides I wouldn't discount the DS yet.

      My only gripe about the DS [other than the health warning on boot] is the lack of
    • There is no doubt that the SP is a great system, but the DS doesn't really have any problems, and really the PSP remains to be seen.

      I'm not getting rid of my SP, but I own a DS. If you haven't yet, get your hands on a DS and Mario 64 DS, and play the mini-games, especially the Mario trampoline game and the Wario slingshot game. It's like being wisked away to the days of asteroids and galaga again. It has been a very long time since I've been this excited about videogames.

      But you are right, the SP is great
  • by motorsabbath ( 243336 ) on Tuesday December 14, 2004 @02:29PM (#11083307) Homepage
    In how many languages can we say "rushed out the door just in time for Xmas" ???
  • Dust... Screen... Dude.

    Errr.

    Dust... Screen... RMA.
  • Dust in the screen.
    Some PSPs have dust in the screeeeeeen.
    OOoooOOOoh. oooooUUUH!
  • Just as soon as they release the information surrounding the Disk Read errors on the Original Playstation 2 which was a result of a calibration issue with the laser on DVD / Blue disks.
  • So THAT'S where Saddam hid those UMDs.
  • Seriously -- let's assume that this "toy" will win customers that will be at least "this short" to play -- 14 years and younger. 15 years and older have boobies and ding dongs to occupy them, along with weed, crack, and whatever else gets past government school teachers.

    So -- we've narrowed the user base down to kids who may or may not lose interest in the PSP after about 2-3 weeks. Kids who might not necessarily know what a pixel is, let alone if it's dead. Kids who will toss it aside if it breaks, pis

Heisenberg may have been here.

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