Sony’s PlayStation 1 was a better CD player for audiophiles than the $6,000 models in the mid-2000s

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Little did I know that my original PlayStation (PS1) in the late 90s could have been an audiophile’s dream CD player.

The PS1 which delivered iconic games like “Gran Turismo”, “Metal Gear Solid”, “Final Fantasy VII” and many more, was the ultimate cheat to get premium audio quality for a fraction of the price.

“If you’re looking for a remarkably musical digital front end that can play music better than any multi-kilobuck digital source, look no further – path recommended,” Jeff Day, a former reviewer for audiophile review site 6moons.com, wrote of the PS1 in a 2007 review of high-end loudspeakers called the Merril Zigmahornets.

The $300 PS1 produced such good audio quality that audiophiles would need to spend thousands of dollars to get similar performance. Specifically, these were to be the first PS1 units with the model number “SCPH-1001”, which had the dedicated red and white RCA analog audio ports on the rear, allowing audiophiles to use their own cables. audio, according to former 6moons writer Michael Levorgna in a NBC news article from 2006.

playstation 1

The back of the “SPCH-1001” PlayStation 1 model number which had the dedicated audio connectors.

eBay


“I had heard rumors about how good this particular version of the PS1 was when used as a CD player,” Day said. written in 2007. After trying out the PS1, Day said the PS1 “really has outstanding audio performance. I’m guessing you’d have to spend over $6,000 on a single-case CD player to match it, let alone improve on it. .”

And audiophiles didn’t even have to spend up to $300 to get a PS1. By 2007, the PS1 had long since given way to the PlayStation 2, and having sold over 100 million units since its launch in 1995, PS1 consoles could be had for as little as $30 on the market. opportunity.

Other model numbers of PS1 consoles had single ports for audio and video, but they still made “really great CD component decks,” Lavorgna said.

Audio technology has advanced so much since the mid-2000s that the PS1 is unlikely to be the peerless CD player it was. Still, if you happen to have kept your old CD collection and an SCPH-1001 PS1 model for a “just in case” moment, this might be it. And if you want to use a PS1 as a CD player, you can easily find them on online marketplaces like eBay for between $20 and $50. Just make sure the listing specifically mentions that the PS1 you’re looking at is model number “SPCH-1001”.

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