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[Update] @yifanlu Needs Your Help In Creating a 3G To microSD Adapter

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NOTE FOR PS VITA'S WITH A 3G MODEM ONLY, ALSO THE VITA HAS TO BE ON FIRMWARE 3.60 AND YOU NEED TO KNOW HOW TO OPEN YOUR VITA

 

Team Molecules lead man @Yifan Lu is looking for your help in creating an adapter which will replace your PS Vita's 3G modem with a microSD card reader, here is some information from the source:

 

EQsYc5D.png


 

Quote

 

The Idea
Vita memory cards are too expensive and it would be nice to be able to use a microSD card. The 3G feature is pretty useless. Combing those two thoughts and I decided "what if we replace that modem with USB storage?" This works because the Vita's modem port is simply a USB 2.0 port that uses the miniPCIe form factor. A hacked Vita running 3.60 has the ability to load custom drivers, and it is just a matter of putting all the pieces together.

 

Features

  • At the core of the adapter is the USB2244 chip, which is a SD to USB microprocessor. It is a high end chip (you won't find it in cheap SD to USB adapters) that has good power consumption and a long lifespan. It supports SD/SDHC/SDXC cards.
  • You need to open up the Vita and replace the modem card. This is relatively simple and is akin to changing the battery. You can put in a large microSD card, install it, and forget about it.
  • With HENkaku Ensō, you can use the adapter on boot
  • Because there's extra space on the board, I also added two debug ports that the original modem uses to communicate with the Vita. Using them is optional. Developers and hackers can use this for their homebrew and hacks.
  • All design files, Gerbers, schematics, layouts, BOMs, software drivers, etc will be public and open source. Anyone can produce the board as well as modify it.


Your Help
I am not doing this to make money. You will help fund all the supplies and the development process. I will work on this project on my spare time and your funds will not be towards labor costs I incur (designing, building the prototype, shipping and packing, etc). To be completely transparent, I will break down the supply costs of the project:

  • $89.05: supplies for prototyping (components, solder paste, inspection microscope, tweezers)
  • $13.95: breakout board I designed to test the signals from the prototypes. Design files will also be open source.
  • $15.12: First prototype run. 10 boards unassembled with no special options. Just to test the design.
  • $74.40: Second prototype run. 10 boards unassembled with hard gold fingers and stencil. This will be the "product verification test" and is a small run of production quality boards (for example, gold fingers on the connectors are expensive but required if you want any durability).
  • $100 (maybe): Any additional prototypes. This is in anticipation that there's some major bug found in the second prototype. Up to two more runs with no special options. I hope this won't be the case and my estimates are overly conservative (better to factor in this cost now than ask for more money later).
  • $1830.26: Final production of 100 boards assembled with hard gold fingers. The boards themselves will cost $597 and is mainly because of the gold. The components will cost $539.43 (main cost here is the mechanical microSD card slot and the USB IC). The assembly will cost $693.83 since I don't plan to solder 100 boards on my own.
  • $45: shipping supplies (padded envelopes and ESD safe bags)
  • $207: fees taken by Indiegogo and the credit card processor

More detailed breakdown of the component and board costs can be found in the BOM spreadsheet that will be released as part of the open source package.

 

Is my Vita supported?
This adapter will only work for a specific set of Vita owners. You must have a 3G OLED model (typically the model number is PCH-110X) that is running firmware 3.60 or less (in order to use the HENkaku hack, which is required). However, a quick search on Aliexpress shows that Vita motherboards running firmware < 3.60 are on sale for about $25 a piece. So you can always buy one and swap your current motherboard (even if it is a Wifi only OLED model) with it.

 

 

 

 

 

Also a very important note from the source:

Please note that when funding this campaign, you are mostly paying for the development and getting a working board would be a bonus. You are not buying a tested and working product.

 

The adapter is $20 and you can get it via Yifan's indiegogo page below, shipping is expected for September 2017

PS Vita 3G to microSD card adapter

 

 

Thanks @CelesteBlue

 

UPDATE

The first batch that Yifan offered soon went out of stock, he has now posted a new batch with even more chances to get a 3G To microSD Adapter.

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Would be nice if something similar could be done with the Slim... The slim has the benefit of having onboard storage, and therefore is not dependent on a Vita card to function properly.

That, in theory, should make it possible to replace the Vita cardreader with a microSD reader, and mess around with drivers and partitions to make it work in tandem with the Slim's onboard storage.

 

Or.... in some way hack the USB OTG the Vita already supports, which again, in theory, should make it possible to just plug a USB stick in the USB OTG cable and be done with it.

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2 hours ago, Lucif3r said:

Would be nice if something similar could be done with the Slim... The slim has the benefit of having onboard storage, and therefore is not dependent on a Vita card to function properly.

That, in theory, should make it possible to replace the Vita cardreader with a microSD reader, and mess around with drivers and partitions to make it work in tandem with the Slim's onboard storage.

 

Or.... in some way hack the USB OTG the Vita already supports, which again, in theory, should make it possible to just plug a USB stick in the USB OTG cable and be done with it.

 

 

I have usb memory stick that plugs right into the Vita, no OTG cable needed. Support for this would be greatly appreciated.

 

C3Yn_cxWQAECb54.jpghttps://pbs.twimg.com/media/C3Yn_cxWQAECb54.jpg

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The problem with that USB port is that it more than likely doesn't support USB host.
I do note that the pads for the PCIe slot are still on the WiFi board. I wonder if sufficient technical MacGyvery with an iron could get that board working in a WiFi Vita.

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11 hours ago, MeatSafeMurderer said:

The problem with that USB port is that it more than likely doesn't support USB host.
I do note that the pads for the PCIe slot are still on the WiFi board. I wonder if sufficient technical MacGyvery with an iron could get that board working in a WiFi Vita.

Never messed with Vita. But in PS3 CECH-B where Wi-Fi is missing we tried long time ago to restore it. And our research show that important parts are missing also on motherboard, not only on card. (more here: http://www.psx-place.com/threads/my-cechb-01-teensy-stealth.9534/#post-43337).

 

My point is that $ony like to remove "not needed" components if port, or feature is not used. So they probably removed also some electronics from motherboard, maybe even controller. 

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14 hours ago, MeatSafeMurderer said:

The problem with that USB port is that it more than likely doesn't support USB host.

 

 

It does support USB OTG. It can accept certain specific things. Its even in the official specs for the Vita.

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I'd be interested to see what can be done...@stomp_442 have you tried enabling the option for USB storage on a PSTV with the USB in? It's unlikely but someone on gbatemp tried soldering a USB stick to the 3G board. They had no joy but yifanlu suggested that enabling that option would mount it. I don't have a slim so I cannot test without cracking an iron out...might well try at some point though.

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On 5/31/2017 at 2:06 PM, MeatSafeMurderer said:

I'd be interested to see what can be done...@stomp_442 have you tried enabling the option for USB storage on a PSTV with the USB in? It's unlikely but someone on gbatemp tried soldering a USB stick to the 3G board. They had no joy but yifanlu suggested that enabling that option would mount it. I don't have a slim so I cannot test without cracking an iron out...might well try at some point though.

It's been a while since I touched my vita, had to update the vitashell manually since the auto update wasn't working for some reason. I tried various methods to get my vita to recognize the usb stick with no luck. Haven't tried my PStv yet.

 

oh shit, I updated to the latest vitashell lastnight and today it's back on 1.43. wtf?

I get it now, vitashell requires a memory card to be installed to keep the update changes, because I need to reinstall it everytime I re-install  HENkaku.

Edited by stomp_442

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