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In 2005, I bought an RGB cable for my old (~1996) PlayStation. It seemed to work at first.

I don't remember when, but at some point, it started acting oddly. Since, whenever I plug it in, it displays the picture but with a heavy orange "overlay" or "tint" to the picture. Only if I apply downward pressure on the plastic part sticking out from the back of the PlayStation does it return to the correct picture. As soon as I release my finger, it goes back to being all "orange".

I have cleaned it with isopropanol alcohol and all that stuff. Doesn't help. I have verified that it's got nothing to do with the connector's TV end. It has to do with the PlayStation's end of the cable.

Also please note that my standard video cable (the one that came with the console) still works, so it's not some kind of issue with the PlayStation itself.

The plastic part has no screws or anything, so I can't see how I could possibly open it up and fix it, even if this is possible. It seems as if downward pressure is the only "fix". So I have to put a brick lying on top of the cable or something. It's really silly.

What could be causing this, and is there some possible fix?

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    A very odd issue. My sympathies. Commented Jun 9, 2022 at 23:02
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    Bad connection or bad solder joint. It can be the PS itself, or the cable. A different type of cable uses different pins so working composite cable does not prove anything about why RGB cable does not.
    – Justme
    Commented Jun 10, 2022 at 6:05
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    A yellow/orange tint means the blue connection is bad so all the blue is missing from the picture. Culprits would be any of the usual reasons cables/connectors can go bad, but focus on the connection for blue Commented Jun 10, 2022 at 10:21

2 Answers 2

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The fact that another cable type works fine doesn't rule out damage to the PlayStation itself. The relevant signal lines are only used for RGB output, so testing with a composite (non-RGB) cable wouldn't reveal the problem.

I'd need more information on what you mean by "an orange tint" to try to guess if that's the only problem, but it at least sounds like the blue line isn't working properly. (Remember that orange is red plus yellow, yellow is made of red and green in RGB, and the PlayStation outputs YPbPr, which would give you a lot more trouble than an orange tint if the green line weren't working.)

If your RGB is using YPbPr over component RCA plugs rather than SCART or some other single-connector solution, I'd see how the result changes if you pull the blue Pb/Cb cable entirely. That won't identify if it's the cable or the console, but it'll test the hypothesis about what's going on, electrically.

As for checking if it's the cable, I'd take a pinout for the AV connector (here's one that uses a photo of the console to show which end should be counted as pin 1) and then, using a multimeter, compare the continuity and resistance of the red, green, and blue lines.

(In a YPbPr RCA cable set, the outer ring is the ground line and the inner pin is the signal, so you'll probably also want to check the resistance of the ground in case something in the circuit has decided to be picky about which return path each color component uses and the ground line for the blue connector is damaged.)

From a quick google, I don't see any signs that the cable should have resistors in there, so if they all show the same resistance (within measurement error) then it's time to examine the PlayStation.

First, check the connector with a light and a magnifying glass to see if there's any damage or corrosion on the relevant pins. (You can get both from the dollar store and, since composite video works fine and you only get an orange tint, you're just looking for whether all the pins are in the same condition.)

Beyond that, open up your PlayStation and check to see if anyone manhandled the connector enough to cause physical damage. Cracked solder joints can be hard to see, so the best solution is to check with a multimeter and not stick the probe directly on the solder blob, but on the connector's lead on one side and something the trace connects to on the other side.

(If it is a cracked solder joint, it's a trivial fix for anyone with a soldering iron. You just reflow the solder.)

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Maybe the old cable is just broken or has some sensitive contacts. When setting up the old TV set of my parents, I had a lot of trouble with loose contacts of old SCART cables. Ordered a new one and that fixed the problem. So the easiest fix might be to buy a new RGB cable and try. They are pretty cheap (<10€). If that doesn't help, you can start measuring and opening the PS1 and do the analysis as ssokolow suggested.

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  • Good point. As someone who's never been to Europe and not tried feeding North American RGB over SCART cables for easier access to passive input switching gear, I didn't know that SCART connectors had that failure mode.
    – ssokolow
    Commented Jun 10, 2022 at 6:38
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    SCART is notoriously error prone, once it starts to go just replace it is sound advice.
    – deep64blue
    Commented Jun 10, 2022 at 13:00

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