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December 20th 2012 2:35 pm

PS3 red flashing light failure :-(

This is a fat, 80gb, four usb, backwards compatible (model CECHE01) fat PS3. I bought it used in fall 2008, so four years on a used console doesn't seem so bad. I love how it looks, having the sd card slot, four usb ports and I even stuffed a 500gb hard drive into it about a year and a half ago. I haven't used the backwards compatibility since 2009, so that feature lost its luster a long time ago.

I have been having some recent issues with my PS3 and decided to back it up about 2 weeks ago, so data loss isn't a big deal. I'm on PS+ so my game saves should be all up to date as well. The issues I was having were that the system would start up saying that there was a hard drive failure or some kind of error and it would take 30 minutes or so to "fix" itself and restart correctly. It may have happened a total of 5 times in the past two years, but two or three times since this summer.

I'm considering at least two options, likely in this order:
1. Try the hairdryer trick­/watch­?v­=kUaCoimoKTk
Seems there's nothing to lose here. Either it works and I will sell it to Gamestop after performing another backup or it won't and I'll move on to option #2. Anybody try this? I would love to know details

2. A dude on Craigslist claims he can repair it for $50. Anyone have experience with console repair people? If I'm going to pay someone $50 to repair it, I'm probably just going to keep it and not try to resell it to Gamestop. I figure the max I'm going to get from Gamestop is $125 so sinking $50 is a lot to not keep it.

3. Pull out hard drive, maybe sell some parts, buy an older PS3 to put the hard drive into and hope that the hard drive wasn't the issue.

4. Toss this beast in the trash, buy brand new or slim model and try to forget the whole thing ever happened.

Anyone with feedback on my ideas is welcome to share!

Does anyone have experience with the newest PS3 model? Is it quieter or faster to download on the PSN than the fat PS3 or the PS3 Slim? I'm eyeing the Assassin's Creed bundle because it has a 500GB hard drive and wouldn't mind the game, but I'm more concerned with hardware vs the "free game." I also already have Uncharted 3 and don't play kids games so the other two bundles aren't appealing.

The drawback of the Assassin's Creed bundle is that it's $300 whereas I could buy a slim for $200, but the slim certainly wouldn't have a 500GB hard drive. I'm not sure if I could put my same hard drive into the slim or if I would want to. Putting $300 down now and then buying the PS4 when it comes out in 2014 doesn't seem like a good idea when I could potentially save $100 now.

Thoughts? PS3 failure experiences? Please share!

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4 answers

This is what fixed that stupid blinking red light problem for me­/2013­/09­/how­-to­-fix­-blink...
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If the only issue you are experiencing is the hard drive failure; That's a rather normal thing. I have that happen to me several times, usually because the PS3 didn't properly shut down during some application or a game made the system froze (usually, PlayStation Home was the one to make this happen)
If that's the only problem you're having with your PS3 right now, I wouldn't worry. It's a pretty normal thing similar to how Windows would check itself after not being shut down properly.

If it happens every time you boot up the PS3, that would be an issue.
Curious: For the cases when you did have the hard drive fix itself, what where you doing on the PS3 just before that happened? What games were you playing? Did it freeze?
If the PS3 beeped 3 times quickly while shutting down, there may have been an issue and didn't turn off properly, usually due to an application/game or PS3 itself not responding or something.

I'm not familiar with the "hairdryer fix", though it seems familiar to the many Xbox 360 fixes for whenever those get "red-ringed", with "fixes" often being wrapping it in a towel or something.
However, that "fix" seems to be for the flashing yellow light on the PS3. If you have a flashing yellow light on your PS3, that's time for you to actually consider getting it fixed. If that's the case, I'd usually check with Sony's own customer service with how much it would cost to get it fixed, then weigh out if it's worth it to send it to Sony or just buy a new PS3.

For you, however: I wouldn't really worry. If the only issue is the hard drive failure when you turn on the PS3, I wouldn't worry. That happens to me once in a while. If it's becoming a regular thing week in and week out, or even every other day/daily, I would consider contacting Sony directly about what to do.

If that's the only issue, I would just bear with it and keep the PS3. Like you said: Sony is likely to announce the next generation of PlayStation consoles next year, so why drop more money now on the old one?

Hope that helps!
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If you needed this post moved from discussions to questions, you could have asked a staff member, we have the power to do that.
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