Retro hardware developer Terraonion announced today that their Multi Optical Drive Emulator (MODE) will now support the original Playstation.
There is a catch though! Although installing a MODE in your Sega Saturn or Dreamcast only requires a screwdriver for disassembly, a PSX installation will require some additional soldering to attach an adapter board. Other PSX ODEs—like the Cybdyn Systems’ PSIO and the XStation—also require their own unique soldering work, so the MODE is not unique in this regard. For those wondering, ODE installations are more complicated for the PSX and PS2 because those consoles integrate portions of their optical drive hardware in to their motherboards, which means that developers have to tap in to those chips to give the console access to external hardware. There are rumours of solder-less ODEs that simply replace the laser assembly, but for now soldering is a necessary evil for Sony ODE development.
(Update: Terraonion representatives have confirmed that installing a MODE PSX adapter board requires about the same proficiency as installing the XStation. While the process won’t be exactly the same, they share enough similarities that watching Voultar’s XStation installation video should give you a good idea of what to expect.)
Other information worth mentioning:
- Terraonion representatives have confirmed that MODE is compatible with 100x and 550x series consoles so far, and that PU-20 boards could be compatible. Development is ongoing and these details are subject to change.
- Menu features and layouts currently available on Sega’s platforms, like list and cover art displays, will be available for Sony platforms.
- The adapter board for Sony installations will be a separate purchase from the MODE itself.
- Price and release date have not been announced yet.
- Although Terraonion showed a MODE installed in a PSX during their announcement, installation methods are still being refined and developed.
Keep your eyes on RetroRGB and Terraonion’s Twitter feed to see more information as it gets released.