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PS2 games look like crap on PS3

It was a great idea to make the PS3 completely backwards compatible with all of the previous PS One and PS2 games. Even though almost every game works, Sony didn’t do its job really well because they look worse on the PS3 than the PS2.

At this point all Playstation 3s have an extra chip in them to take care of older games which is actually nothing more than a shrunk-down version of a Playstation 2. The video output is still done by the RSX graphics chip on the PS3 and according to this forum thread the problem might be in there. Sony will probably remove the PS2 chip in a later revision of the console and let the PS3’s Cell do all the work. So why do previous gen games look worse? We don’t really know for sure, but we do know that the examples shown in the video below look pretty ugly.

According to the video the PS3 resized the graphic output of PS1/PS2 games at a low resolution with no filtering causing artifacts and amplifying jagged edges. We also know that it’s nothing cable related, even with a high-end HDMI cable, which is the best way to send the signal to your tv, the games still look crappy. Some people have found out that games supporting progressive scan (480P) don’t suffer as much, and you can limit your problems by turning it on in the dashboard. The video also says Sony knows about these issues but they refuse to do anything about it because most people won’t care too much, but we can’t confirm that statement. The image below shows the difference between 480i and 480P on the PS3.


Click to enlarge and you’ll see for yourself, left is 480i, right 480P

If you’re an early adopter and really care about your older games, you’d best keep your PS2 and PS1 around for a little while longer. Once the PS1/PS2 emulator is finished, these problems will probably be over and you can hopefully play your games in an even higher resolution where everything’s sharper instead of crappier.

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23 comments on 'PS2 games look like crap on PS3'

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Comment by Hoffer on 2006-12-17 20:45:56 | Reply

So, the PS3 does back compat on like 99% of PS1 and PS2 games, but they look like shit. The 360 does back compat on the best, most popular games, but they are in 720p with AA.

I’m thinking the 360 way is alright about now.

Comment by kissmygritz on 2006-12-17 23:53:53 | Reply

“I’m thinking the 360 way is alright about now.”

That seems to be the theme for most 360 vs. PS3 debates.

Comment by Ryan Johnson on 2006-12-18 02:38:31 | Reply

xbox 360 sucks the ps3 is wayy better than the 360 the xbox 360 is not fully backware compatable

Comment by cody on 2006-12-18 07:23:35 | Reply

You know i just want to say one fucking thing to
everyone that likes the PS3. The Japanese Love there Playstation They have Japanese Pride about there system . Americans Don’t, Ill stick to my US “piece of shit” xbox 360 and I’ll happy with it. I’m not giving those Japanese One more fucking Buck of mine (Besides for the psp)
hehe. I love my American xbox I’m proud that america finally has a Good system … You guys should have some pride to!

Comment by WTF? on 2007-06-06 23:44:53 | Reply

Dude, a little brutal don’t you think? I mean PS3 is a piece of sh*t with great graphics. But whats up with all the “those Japanese” referrals? I mean the System is complete garbage and xbox 360 kicks its ass, but “those Japanese” people are a big reason the gaming community is the way it is today.

Comment by CM on 2008-01-27 12:05:51 | Reply

you obviously do not own one

Comment by The_Glovner on 2008-01-28 23:56:57 | Reply

Hmmm, what a well constructed argument, I will take your points and ponder them.

And so lucky the PS3 is fully backwards compatible, that means you still get to play Barbie Horse Adventures, you lucky little sweetie.

Comment by BHF on 2006-12-18 03:05:15 | Reply

So What? people don’t buy a new system to play old games they usual will buy one to play the new games. Pluse their is no reason to have 360 vs Ps3 debates we know that 360 will end up become like the ps2 compared to the ps3 just give it time, I already seen three people sell their 360 for ps3 anyways. So don’t be a duma$$ and buy a ps3, we got to let xbox only good game go (halo) before they release another disappointing game. They may even be two new weapons and one new map!!!!!

Comment by Evan on 2006-12-18 03:53:20 | Reply

umm alot of pepole i know say they would rather have a PS3 becaue they dont want to have to ditch all there old ps2 games. But at the same time those pepole want all the games on the 360 that are next gen.

Comment by Evan on 2006-12-18 03:54:35 | Reply

Wow And standered def already looks like crap on an HDTV.

Comment by Grover on 2006-12-18 10:24:05 | Reply

Id suggest people actually get a PS3 and try running a PS2 game. On my TV it looks perfectly fine, and nothing like these screenshots at all - My guess is that someone is comparing two different screens (just look at the colouring - they should be the same - that are on mine).

Comment by RUSirius on 2006-12-22 22:26:10 | Reply

If you look at the thread, it has TONS of screenshots from lots of different people. You say yours looks fine, have you actually played any of the AFFECTED games (there is a list in the thread as well.) Games that run in 480p mode don’t exhibit the problem. The movie is also slightly erroneous in it’s explanation of the problem. Wether it has to do with scaling is debatable, but what we DO know is that it’s because ENTIRE columns of pixels are being “flipped horizontally” (again the thread explains this)… Take a look for yourself and it should become evident that this is NOT some “made up” problem…

Comment by coojo on 2006-12-18 19:57:08 | Reply

i guess im not gettin a ps3 cause ilike to play old games once and a while see i still play halo on my 360 and mario 64 on my wii and i wouldent mind playing the old metal gears or god of war 2 when it comes out but not lookin lke shit

Comment by SMB on 2006-12-21 01:43:57 | Reply

My HDTV Scales everything its self and it looks great. When I see the same screens on older tvs that dont scale (I dont really know whats going on in the box it just does something) The pictures looks crappy like these pictures and thats with a Ps2 not a Ps3 so I dont know what to think, I will wait to see for myself before listening to everyones arguments as they all seem to be from one fanboy against another. Hell even when I play shadow of the collosus it looks as pretty as some of my older 360 games (Tony hawk for instance) So yes I very interested to see this for myself.

The video description of the problem is extremely misleading. It is not due to filtering, but that the PS3 is actually flipping entire sections of the image. So rows of pixels are mirrored backwards all over the screen.

Comment by Ddizzle on 2006-12-24 05:53:20 | Reply

Check out:
http://sharkyforums.com/showthread.php?t=293286

As hard as PS3s are to get, I’m returning mine right after Xmas — the piece of crap — there are barely any PS3 games out right now, so there’s basically nothing to play BUT PS2 games on it at the moment. When Sony finally fixes this issue I’ll buy it, otherwise I’ll save my $600 and keep my PS2 which looks way better. It’s NOT WORTH IT to buy the PS3 right now at ALL!!!!

Comment by ryn0o8 on 2007-01-04 06:53:20 | Reply

if you’re not sure about the backwards compatability of PS2 games on the PS3, why don’t you keep your PS2 and buy a PS3 as well? if the PS2 game sucks on PS3 then play it on your PS2. what’s the big problem? i’m getting a PS3 and also keeping my PS2 just to be safe.

Comment by ryn0o8 on 2007-01-04 06:54:55 | Reply

if you’re getting a PS3 to play PS3 games, why are you worrying about your PS2 games? just keep your god dam PS2 as well.

Comment by blecky on 2007-01-10 18:38:04 | Reply

Yes, it’s true. It looks like shit. Though it mostly seems to be with the games that really push the ps2’s hardware. FFX and XII look like shit. MGS2 and 3 both look equally bad. Some of the older ones don’t look too bad. Pretty much all PS1 games look like shit. They completely removed the smoothing filter from PS2. And well… you all saw how the PS3 is rendering PS2 games in that video, so you can imagine just how horrible all of those look.

But what I haven’t noticed anyone say, is that a lot of it can be noticably reduced if you simply go into display settings and turn cross color filtering on…
I mean, you can still see the jaggies and the blocks, but they’re a bit less noticable.

Definitely a huge disappointment to say the least.

Comment by SMB on 2007-01-10 20:10:38 | Reply

Its to bad I think I will just buy a new Ps2 and use my roomates 360 for new games oh well save my self a pile of money anyways.

Comment by chance on 2007-06-21 15:55:38 | Reply

PS2/3 kicks Xbox’s ass.

Comment by The_Glovner on 2008-01-28 23:59:51 | Reply

Yup and has been for a long time eh? Sales figures going through the roof.

Who really cares, if you want a PS3 go get it, if you want an Xbox go get that, i myself want a PS3, i have always wanted a PS3, it is easy when a system has almost 2 years over the competition to make better games and have developers understand your consoles hardware. I still think the PS3 can offer high quality games, just give it some time, after people finish all the “other fights” cause you know Microsoft is gonna milk the Halo franchise! The PS3 is a good system give it time and it could be a great system.

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