How to determine each PSP model without any version information

Introduction

If you are unfamiliar with PSPs, but want to buy a new one, you should be able to distinguish the different PSP types, so you don't run into bad surprises, when you discover that you bought the wrong PSP version. This is especially useful on bazaars, where you don't have the time and possibility to quickly google what you need to look for.

PSP-N1000 Go

Let's start with the easiest one. You will never mistake this one for another PSP version.

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Now that is easy.

 

PSP-E1000 Street

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This one is not as easy to spot as the PSP Go, however it is still very easy to differentiate.

Here are all the key differences between this model and the PSP-[123]000 models:

  • The casing is completely non-glossy, as clearly opposed to the PSP-[123]000 models.
  • The UMD drive that may pop out, is almost as wide as the device itself, unlike with the PSP-[123]000 models, where it only takes up about 1/3 of the device's back. This way the device has only a single opening allowing you to change the battery or place a UMD disc into it, while the PSP-[123]000 models have separate compartments for those purposes.
  • The home row for the Start, Select and volume buttons looks like a sticker instead of being a crucial part of the device's casing.
  • The power slider is below the home row on the left.
  • The speaker opening is only on the left upper side, instead of both sides, and consists of 4 little round holes instead of a single ovally shaped one on each side.
  • There is no Wi-Fi and Memory Stick indicator LED, at all. (This model does not have any Wi-Fi features.)

PSP-1000 Fat

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First and foremost, the easiest way to spot a 1000 on first sight are the speaker locations. This is the only model that has them on the lower part of the console. The speakers are behind those two holes that are on both sides of the PSP. In the pictures you can see one hole between the analog stick and the home button and the other one is right above the start button.

Another unique property of the PSP-1000 are the slightly punched in dots on the upper side of the PSP.

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The back of the PSP-1000 is always matte (except it is using a custom aftermarket shell). It also has a large ring around the PSP logo. On the right side, you can partially see the Memory Stick slot, below the MagicGate label.

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The PSP-1000 is the only one that has a dedicated button for opening the UMD drive. In the above picture this button is seen on the right side, with the label OPEN on it. This PSP generation is additionally the only one, that support data transmission over infrared. The infrared interface is the black (actually red, if you look at it closely) spot between the L button and the USB port.

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This PSP is also the only one that has these two additional contacts where the DC input is. All future generations lack these two contacts and have only the circular DC input. The input is seen in the picture above, on the left side, coloured in yellow.

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Here you can see the left side of the PSP. The PSP-1000 is the only one with such a memory card slot. It is partially on the back and not on the side, entirely, like in later generations. In the above picture, you can see the memory card slot below the WLAN switch, which is roughly below the analogue stick, from the photo observant's perspective.
You can also see it partially on the picture that shows the PSP-1000's back. It is on the right side, with the label MagicGate above it.

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PSP-2000 Slim

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PSP-3000 Brite

Now differentiating between the PSP-2000 and the PSP-3000 is the most difficult to do. It's easy to mistake one for the other, especially if you are unexperienced. You could perhaps see the difference when turning on the device, as the screens are different, though yet again, this won't help you without experience.

The biggest and easiest to spot difference between the Slim and the Brite is that the former has a Home button, while this same button contains a Playstation logo on the latter, instead.

If the button is worn out, so you can neither see Home nor the Playstation logo on it, you can look for the most serious difference, that will always be visible, except the PSP is missing half its back:

The PSP-2000 Slim has still the good old thick ring around the PSP logo on the back, while the PSP-3000 Brite has a very slim ring around the PSP logo on the back! This is usually the dead giveaway, telling you which PSP you are currently holding in your hands.

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