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GameStone's Sony PlayStation - ePSXe

Sony PlayStation

Please note: - This guide is a little out of date as there is a later version of ePSXe.

pSX

pSX emulator v1.13 - Simple and best PlayStation emulator.

The main homepage above is down at the moment but can still be downloaded from other sites like the link below.

http://www.emulator-zone.com/doc.php/psx/psx_em.html

Doesn't use plugins, if you just want to play the games then this is the best emulator to use. Start it up and play. It does not enhance the graphics like the other emulators though.

Introduction - ePSXe

ePSXe is a Sony PlayStation emulator for playing PlayStation games on your PC.

It has a good compatibility rate and runs very fast. It's very flexible as it uses a plugin system for sound and graphics and can also supports the original Playstation Controller with Dual Shock Motors using a cheap PS-USB adaptor.

ePSXe

ePSXe

Downloading ePSXe, Plugins and Installation

ePSXe

http://www.epsxe.com/ - epsxe202-1.zip

BIOS

IMPORTANT! To get the emulator working you need a copy of the PlayStation BIOS, because this file is copyright Sony you will not find it on this page.

If you do a little searching for files names below it shouldn't take you long to find one of them (should be about 235k zip file).

SCPH1001.bin

SCPH7502.bin

Plugins

You may want to check out Pete's Domain as that site may have some more upto date plugins.

http://www.pbernert.com/

GPU - Graphics

You have a choice of three graphics plugins:-

  • P.E.Op.S. Soft GPU (Windows) - V 1.18 - Win Emu plugin (software)
  • Pete's OpenGL2 PSX GPU - V 2.9 - Win Emu plugin for modern cards

The secone one is for newer cards and if you can't get that working use the first one.

SPU - Sound
  • ePSXe SPU cor 1.9.0
CDRom
  • ePSXe CDR ASPI core 1.7.0
  • ePSXe CDR WNT/W2K core 1.7.0

The first one works fine with ISO images and real CDROM's, if you encounter problems try the second one.

Frontend

Installing

ePSXe does not have an install script but its not really needed as the program will run from wherever you Extract the files to.

Create a folder called ePSXe and unzip the epsxe160.zip file to that directory.

Here's a look at the folder and files that are set up.

ePSXe

  • Bios - Where the PlayStation BIOS file is stored
  • Cheats - Place cheat files here
  • Docs - ePSXe documentation - Read them as they contain lots of information about the program
  • Memcards - Where ePSXe stores your memory cards files
  • Patches - Game patches to help get some games running
  • Plugins - audio / video plug-ins
  • Skins - ePSXeCuter skin files
  • Snap - Where captured screen shots are stored
  • Sstates - Where ePSXe stores its saved game states

Extract - The bios file to the bios folder.

Extract - All the plugins to the plugins folder.

Extract - ePSXecutor front end into the ePSXe folder

Installing Games

To play games on ePSXe you will need either the original Playstation CD's or an ISO image of them. If you have the original disk then ePSXe can play them straight from your CDROM.

If you have an ISO image these will work directly from you hard drive, this is the preferred method as it does not wear your discs out and hard drives are infinitely faster than a CDROM so loading times are much shorter.

Setting Up with ePSXeCutor

Before you can do anything you need to make a configuration file up. Go to the configurations menu and select new configuration. You will see the following screen (don't be put off!).

ePSXeCutor

Type in a name for your configuration file (ie. Gradius). The bitmap option lets you set different pictures for different configs.

Now click the [Configure ePSXe] button. You will now see this.

ePSXeCutor

You can see above that there are alot of things to configure. There are three types of icons showing Graphics, Sound and CDROM plugins.

ePSXe uses a plugin system for it's graphics, sound and CD control. To make sure that they are working properly you can press the test button or if you wish to configure your plugin press the Configure button. There are some sections below that deal with configuring these plugins which are based on the plugins I recommended above.

To select a plugin just click on it, press activate and an arrow will appear next to it. Just pick the ones that you feel suit your machine best.

Click the [Memcards] tab. You will see this screen.

ePSXeCutor

To make a memory card you need to press create. A card will appear in the list but its not formatted so select it and press format and the text will show that the card is formatted. You now need to put it into a memory card slot, so select your card and press which slot you want it in. You can create as many memory cards as you like, the Import and Export options are for sharing your memory cards with friends.

Click the [Options] tab and the following screen appears.

ePSXeCutor

BIOS - Sets which BIOS file ePSXe will use to emulate the PlayStation.

Sound Settings

  • Enable Sound - Enables/Disable sound in games.
  • Enable MDEC XA - Enables/Disable the XA sound system in movies.
  • Enable SPU IRQ Hack - Needed in certain games.
  • Enable CDDA - Enables/Disable CD audio in games.

CDROM Settings

  • CD Drive Letter - Lets you select which of your CDROM is used by ePSXe.
  • Read subchannel - Reads extra data stored on CD disks (usually protection data).
  • Cache subchannel M3S file to disk - Stores subchannel information on your hard disk for fast access (some drive read sub channel slowly).
  • Cache subchannel LG 8520/21/22b - Does same as above but on LG CDROM's.

Other Settings

  • Auto Load PPF files - Automatically load patch files for games when their CD is inserted.
  • Command Line - Lets you add extra commands which can be found in the readme file.
  • Country Settings - Sets which country's TV format is used (NTSC, PAL) - leave on Autodetect.
  • Pad Settings - Starts ePSXe so you can configure your controller.
  • Start ePSXe GUI - Starts ePSXe so you can then choose which game to load.

ePSXeCutor

For the cheat system check out the documentation as this needs files to be downloaded to get it working.

Press close and your configuration panel should look something like this...

Under the [Tools] menu you can also customize the look of ePSXeCuter.

Plugin Configuration

Graphics

I'm going to take you through the 'Pete's OpenGL2' driver as most of the commands relate to other drivers and it should work with most 3D cards.

Click it, press 'Activate' and then press the configure button. The following screen appears.

ePSXeCutor

 

Now this looks quite complex but most has explanations next to the options, I will explain only the ones that are not to obvious.

ePSXeCutor

Resolution & Colors

Colour Depth - Set the amount of colour's used on fullscreen displays.

Keep PSX aspect ratio - This means the image will not be stretched it you have a wide screen display.

Internal X & Y resolutions - The higher you set the more CPU it uses.

No 'render-to-texture' - Not sure what this does?

Textures

Texture Filtering - Lets you set how much blending between game textures is used and whether you want non 3D graphics blended.

GFX Card VRam Size - Lets you specify how much video ram your graphics card has so ePSXe can optimize for it.

Hi-res textures (2xSAI) - This is a special effect that can be used on textures to improve them but it needs alot of video memory to do it.

Framerate

Use FPS Limit - If you have a superfast machine with a super fast graphics card then games often play too fast so this option limits the speed to a selected framerate. If you don't know how fast your graphics card can draw then select the auto detect option.

Use Frame Skipping - If you have a slow computer and/or a slow graphics card then you can make ePSXe skip frames in a game to speed things up a little. This option also causes games to seem jerkier.

Auto Detect FPS/Frame skip limit - Looks at you system and sets both limits automatically.

FPS Limit - Sets the speed that the FPS (Frames per second) limiter uses. The most compatible setting is 60 as most SVGA graphics cards support this.

Compatibility

Off screen drawing - Used in certain games where characters, objects or images have to be drawn off of the visible screen otherwise the images just appear rather than slid onto the screen.

Frame buffer effects - Lets ePSXe use advanced blending to improve graphics. You can use software blending although this might slow the games down or if your card supports it, you can use hardware blending.

Frame buffer upload - Sets how ePSXe stores textures for graphics on your graphics card.

Full screen filters

The more of this stuff you turn on the slower the PlayStation gets, only use on very fast systems.

Misc

Special game fixes - Fixes issues in certain games

Default settings

If you cant be bothered to much around with the above setting then use one of these defaults.

Nice - Take more power while Fast does just that

Advance Options

The little button next to 'Show FPS display on startup' brings up this page where you can configure the keys used to change some of above options while you are playing a game.

ePSXeCutor

Sound

Again I'll deal with one of Pete's plugins as they seem to be the best. This one is for Direct Sound Support.

ePSXeCutor

General Settings
  • Mode - Try some settings to see which works best
  • Volume - Lets you set the volume of the game
  • Reverb - The higher the number the more CPU it uses
  • Interpolation - The higher the number the more CPU it uses
XA Music
  • Enables the PlayStation XA music system (compressed audio)
  • Change XA speed - Changes the XA emulation speed to maintain accuracy
Misc
  • SPU IRQ - This is needed by some games to get the sound running

CDROM

I included an image of the CDROM plugin section only if you cannot get the internal one working

ePSXeCutor

Configuring Controllers

This is how to configure your gamepads. First open up your config and select the options tab. Now press the 'Start ePSXe for pad configuring' button and this screen will open.

ePSXe

Select the config menu and then select a Game Pad - Pad 1.

ePSXe

You will see this panel, to configure a key just click on a box and press the key or joystick/joypad button you want to use.

If you use a joystick/joypad then it must be configured in the Game Controllers section of the Windows Control Panel for it to work.

ePSXe

 

You can also configure the Analog, Mouse, Gun and Dual shock motors (which do work in Windows XP with the converter below)

ePSXe

I would recommend getting a PlayStation to USB converter because then you can use a PlayStation pad on the PC

http://www.lik-sang.com/info.php?category=160&products_id=3833&lsaid=304970

Playing a Game

Firstly you need to know some keys.

Default Game Control Keys

S Square
D Triangle
Z X
X Circle
C Select
V Start
W L1
Q L2
E R1
R R2
Arrow Keys Directional buttons

Other Useful Keys

F1 Savestate in selected slot
F2 Increase slot (max = 5)
F3 Loadstate from selected slot
F4 Enable/Disable SIO irq
F5 Toggle Digital pad/Special pad
F6 Enable/Disable XA sound/read
F7 Enable Chrono Cross cheat code
F8 Make a snapshot to snap directory

 

PlayStation CDROM - select [Run CDROM]

ePSXe

PlayStation ISO Image - select [Run ISO]

ePSXe

You can also run the BIOS which is the same as if you switched a PlayStation on with no game in.

Image Gallery

Here are some screen shots from various games running on ePSXe.

ePSXe

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ePSXe

ePSXe

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ePSXe