Magic IV Mod-Chip Review

Written by Zombie_X
December 2005


INTRODUCTION

The Magic team have made very successful PS2 mod-chips. Their new “Magic IV” mod-chip seems to add more compatibility and support for imports and backups.


FEATURES:

  • New ON / OFF technology to deactivate the Modchip function
  • New low profile design for easy mounting and installation
  • Network adapter (PlayStation 2 broadband connection) ready
  • Direct Boot of PS2 Imports and Backups
  • Direct Boot of PS1 Imports and Backups
  • Multi Disk - DVD9 Ready
  • NTSC and PAL ready
  • ActionReplay MAX, ActionReplay V2 and GameShark2 ready (for all who use GS2 / AR2 cheatcodes)
  • Does not effect your DVD player - all original features of the PlayStation 2 remain the same
  • Autodetect the PlayStation 2 version and region (NTSC, PAL) - don't worry which country you are in
  • Bonus Features: Full Screen Display
  • Compatible with all V1-V7 PS2 versions (USA/PAL/JAP)
     


CONTENTS:

  • Magic IV Mod-Chip
  • Installation Wires
  • De-solder Braid


INSTALLATION
:

Well once I saw that this mod-chip needed 16+ wires to install I just let my friend install it for me since my soldering skills aren’t really that good.


FIRST IMPRESSIONS:

I must says that this is the very first time I have laid eyes on a PS2 mod-chip and it’s absolutely tiny! It can fit on the tip of my pinky finger! The package it was in only had a anti-static bag and some installation wire/de-solder braid. As expected there was no installation manual at all.


USAGE:

Well to boot PS2 backups/originals/imports you just need to power on the system then use the eject button. To use the PSX/DVD Movies mode you need to power off the console and power it on to standby then hold power for 2 seconds until the light turns blue on the disc tray. To disable the chip hold power for 4+ seconds. Couldn't be simpler I would say.


PERFORMANCE:

Well I tried numerous PS2 backups and all played flawlessly. PS2 imports played fine except for Tetris Worlds as it crashed all the time. I also tried Action Replay MAX EVO and it worked as well.

It’s time to test the homebrew support. I tried PGEN (Sega Genesis/Master System emulator) as well as Snestation (SNES emulator) and both worked great.

PS1 backups played flawlessly if you burned them at 4x and below, anything over that may or may not work. PS1 imports played fine as long as you had a way to disable the mod-chip check in some of them (Biohazard 3, Biohazard Gun Survivor). I only experienced problems when trying to play some PSX games as they were recognized as audio CD’s and some weren't recognized at all.

DVD playback was good as well except for the fact that DVD+R movies skip quite often. DVD movies tended to load longer with the chip enabled rather than disabled.


CONCLUSION:

Well the chip worked pretty good for me and you can beat the $12.00 price tag. Tons of support for backups/imports and originals plus homebrew make this one a winner.

PROS:

  • Price is very reasonable
  • Simple ways to switch between modes
  • Good PS2 backup/import support


CONS:

  • PSX support could be improved
  • No auto detection of media type (can’t auto select mod to run disc)
  • The chips size and number of wires needed for installation