One of the fastest projects I’ve been able to design, cut, assemble and test, the PS2 Advance is a simple but cool looking mod that goes along the lines of the original Cross Plane and makes use of its Breakout Box. Not a portable, but just a dedicated controller with Audio/Video capabilities.
Basically this mod was done as a side project as I was waiting on parts for the N64 project as well as the Cross Plane commission that I’ve taken on. Honestly though, I did this just because I wanted to use up a bunch of loose parts I had laying around the shop and since I’d never done anything with a Sony product outside of the control pak for the Cross Plane, I thought this would be fun.
The build consisted of two AG-85’s from Poly Case. Though originally I planned to use the case as it was, I found that it was very thick and wasn’t all that comfortable to hold. So then I got to wondering, what if I could use two back halves of the case? Well, giving that a shot I found that yes, it would work and felt very comfortable and natural in the process.
A main issue I had to fix though was the top panel that holds the two halves together. I ended up having to mill out my top and I was extremely pleased with how well that fit together. Also, because the back halves were meant to have the screws just slide in and screw into the front half, I had to ditch the screws that came with it mill out a hex slot for an Acorn nut to fit into. This allowed me to use 4 #6-32 x 1.25″ pan head screws painted black to hold the two halves together nice and secure.
As mentioned before, this was just a mod made of parts I already had, with the exception of:
RDC’s PS2miniDS2 Controller Board
Which is a freaking amazing piece of modding technology. The controller board is an alternative to using the real PS2 controller board, which is beneficial as a space saver and is designed for modding situations. Because most controller layouts don’t work for 90% of the modding projects we do, we always end up just running wires to the controller and use a variety of tact switches or custom PCBs anyway, so stripping away all that from the board and replacing them with test points saves a great deal of space. The only downside is the boards need to populated with the original controller components, which can be a bit tricky as it involves hot air rework and a fair amount of time to swap them over correctly.
All in all though, I’m very happy with how this came out and in such a short amount of time. Now that this is cleared off my work bench, I can concentrate on the N64 as well as the Cross Plane commission I took on and am waiting on parts for.
The whole unemployed thing sucks like you wouldn’t believe, but if I look at it on the bright side, it has given me a chance to pursue what I love at the same time while I wait.
Anyway, here is a video of the build process and a demo of the handheld in action. Hope you enjoy!