Disc burning problems

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VarmaKrapula
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Disc burning problems

Post by VarmaKrapula » May 10th, 2019, 3:10 am

So I would like to play homebrew and other stuff on my PS1. I "softmodded" my console by installing Unirom on my goldfinger-cheat device.
The one big problem is that I don't seem to be able to get any of my burned discs to work. Even the Unirom-disc doesn't seem work correctly even tho I managed to get it running. For an example, at the boot menu it freezes if I try to boot a game without removing the disc and placing it back in the console. Weird stuff.

I've tried to burn the discs with Imgburn. If I use the .cue-file it usually corrupts the file completely. With Unirom it showed some error messages during the verify-mode but it still worked. Homebrews and backups will be entirely corrupted.
If I only use the .bin-file the game will work somewhat but crashes always at the same point. (usually not too far in the game) I tried the discs with an emulator also and it gives me some kind of "unknown opcode"-error during crash. The emulator and my real PS1 crash exactly at the same spot.

I've also tried several different drives to burn them and with different speeds but all of them give the same result.

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TriMesh
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Re: Disc burning problems

Post by TriMesh » May 10th, 2019, 10:41 am

The lockups when running Unirom sounds like a weak optical drive. I would tend to say the other stuff is related to the drive too, but I can't explain the problems with running the images in an emulator that way.

One thing to note is that the CD drive in the PSX is an old design and has a fixed gain chosen for the best results with pressed CDs - CD-R discs have a lower signal level and as a result can exhibit read problems even if the same drive can play original discs with no problems. Don't assume that just because your PC can read the disc with no problems it's OK - PC CD-ROM drives normally have wide media compatibility including things like CD-RW discs, and as a result they have circuitry in the read path that allows adjustment of the gain - so if the drive is getting a weak signal from the disc it just turns the gain up, which is something that the CD hardware in the PSX is not capable of doing.

To troubleshoot this, I would start by finding the best condition original disc you have and making an image file from it (better, make multiple images files and compare them) - then run the image file in an emulator to make sure it works OK.

Now burn this image file to a CD-R and try running it under the emulator - if that fails, then you definitely have a burning problem. If it works, then try booting the same disc on the console - if that fails after it worked on the emulator then you can be pretty sure that the drive in the console is marginal.

VarmaKrapula
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Re: Disc burning problems

Post by VarmaKrapula » May 13th, 2019, 7:17 am

Thank you for your answer and help!

I agree that my console's optical drive may be weak but I don't think it's the root of this problem.
I made a CD-image of my Ape Escape and Croc 2 discs (my two discs that are in near mint condition) and burned them into CD-R's. They both worked fine on the emulator and on console.

Let me recap the problems I'm having, in this simple list because my native language isn't english so my original post may be a bit confusing. Sorry about that.
So I'm using imgburn:
-Every game I try to burn by using .cue-file get's completely corrupted (except Unirom CD-image but it still gives miscompares during verify-mode)
-With only .bin -files it completes the burn with no errors but the game will crash at some point or another. Usually at loading screens. It crashes at the excact same point with console and emulator so the problem must be in the disc and not the console's optical drive.

I'm all lost with this. Are all PS1 image files on the internet incapable of being burned with my drives or what the heck is the problem? My own games copied from legit discs seem to work but any homebrew or backup downloaded wont work. Am I creating the .cue-files wrong? I've used a dedicated software and Imgburn's own .cue-file generator to create them and they both end up with a .cue-file that corrupts the disc.

Does anyone know any other freeware CD burn softwares that dont contain malware so that I can verify that the problem isn't in the Imgburn software? I don't really think the problem lies there but it's worth a shot. I've tried to find people with similiar burning problems from google but all people seem to have problems only with cutscenes.

EDIT: I seemed to find out what the problem is. I compared the .cue -files with the CD images I created from my PS1-discs to the ones generated by programs and saw that the Track mode had a value of "2" on the images created by my legit PS1-discs. The value was "1" on the generated ones that corrupted the disc. By changing this value to "2" i've managed to create copies that seem to work.
I really don't understand the function of Cue sheets so I'm sorry if I created a hassle out of nothing. :D But I hope this helps someone as dumb as me. I did some searching and it seems that Track mode 1 is for PC-CD -rom and 2 is for PS1 discs. I'm surprised that not many (if any) people have had this same problem before based on my googling.

EDIT2: The changing of the Track mode to value "2" fixed the disc being corrupted after burning it but the games still crash very early in to the game. As they do if I would have burned them with only using the .bin -file as mentioned earlier. I'm really getting frustrated.

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Shadow
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Re: Disc burning problems

Post by Shadow » May 14th, 2019, 6:14 am

Do a checksum on the game you've downloaded and check it on ReDump. This will ensure that the download you have is actually a complete and intact copy and not missing any bytes or may contain corrupted data.
Development Console: SCPH-5502 with 8MB RAM, MM3 Modchip, PAL 60 Colour Modification (for NTSC), DB-9 breakout headers for both RGB and Serial output and an Xplorer with CAETLA 0.34.

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VarmaKrapula
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Re: Disc burning problems

Post by VarmaKrapula » May 16th, 2019, 9:55 pm

It seems that the 4 games I downloaded just were faulty image files and didn't work properly after burning. I only tried PAL-versions but after I changed to NTSC I managed to get even them to work. After testing more games I was able to succesfully burn them.
The reason why I only stuck to the PAL-versions was that I want to play PS1 with my old CRT-television. Well I can play these games that wont work by getting the US-version of the game and by playing them trough my PC screen but it would be almost the same as playing them through en emulator.

But thanks to both of you for your help!

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