PlayStation 3 Teardown



Teardowns provide a look inside a device and should not be used as disassembly instructions.

Member-Contributed Guide

Member-Contributed Guide

An awesome member of our community made this guide. It is not managed by iFixit staff.

This is a teardown of an original launch 60GB PlayStation 3 system. One of the best units out there that had backwards compatibility and the card readers. Sadly this unit has a GPU a problem so it's broken.

Edit: Nickname fix, formerly Karasumachitose. Apologies to any inconvenience this causes.

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Edit Step 1 PlayStation 3 Teardown  ¶ 

  • There she is, one of the two original PS3 models available at launch (60GB).

  • It's got PS2/PS1 backwards compatibility and a multi-card reader. The current PS3 Slim doesn't have the card reader. The other launch model lacked the card reader and WiFi (20GB).

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Edit Step 2  ¶ 

  • Let's get started!

  • Remove the hard drive access cover from the bottom of the PS3.

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Edit Step 3  ¶ 

  • Use the Phillips screwdriver #1 to remove the blue screw.

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Edit Step 4  ¶ 

  • Lift up the metal lever.

  • Slide the hard drive towards the front of the case.

  • Pull it straight up and out of the unit.

    • This is all you need to do to access the PS3's hard drive.

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Edit Step 5  ¶ 

  • Remove the warranty sticker.

    • Obviously this voids your warranty. You have been warned.

  • Use your fingers and pry up and remove the foot underneath the sticker.

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Edit Step 6  ¶ 

  • Use the Torx Screwdriver (T8 or T10) to remove the torx screw from the space behind the rubber foot.

    • This screw has a security bit but most are able to remove it successfully with a normal Torx driver.

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Edit Step 7  ¶ 

  • Place PlayStation face up such that "PlayStation 3" is oriented so you can read it.

  • Place your palm on the PlayStation 3 logo and slide the plastic front cover towards you and off of the outer plastic shell. Set it aside.

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Edit Step 8  ¶ 

  • Remove the metal receiver that held the torx screw you just removed.

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Edit Step 9  ¶ 

  • Remove the 9 screws from the outer plastic shell using a #2 Philips driver.

    • 6 large screws

    • 1 medium screw

    • 2 small screws

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Edit Step 10  ¶ 

  • READ THIS ENTIRE STEP AND THE NEXT ONE BEFORE PROCEEDING. Locate the two locking tabs on the back of the PS3. Push them in simultaneously and lift the outer plastic shell off of the main board but BE CAREFUL as there is a ribbon cable connecting the shell to other hardware.

    • Ribbon cables are very fragile. Take care when removing or inserting ribbon cables.

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Edit Step 11  ¶ 

  • Disconnect the ribbon cable and set the shell aside.

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Edit Step 12  ¶ 

  • To remove the plastic card reader, locate its two locking plastic tabs that hold the card reader to the shell, spread them, and lift the card reader off of the shell.

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Edit Step 13  ¶ 

  • Working on the main unit, lift up on and disconnect the black RF wire from the wireless assembly using a spudger.

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Edit Step 14  ¶ 

  • Remove the flat ribbon cable from the wireless assembly.

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Edit Step 15  ¶ 

  • Remove the four Philips #2 screws from the top of the wireless assembly.

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Edit Step 16  ¶ 

  • Lift the wireless assembly off the main board and set it aside.

  • Disconnect the ribbon cable from the main board and place it with the wireless assembly.

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Edit Step 17  ¶ 

  • Locate the other wireless assembly which the black RF wire is connected to.

  • Remove the one Philips #2 screw retaining it to the main board and lift off the assembly and set it aside.

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Edit Step 18  ¶ 

  • Remove the cables that attach the power supply to the main board.

  • Remove the AC connector from the power supply.

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Edit Step 19  ¶ 

  • Remove the 5 screws using a Philips #2 from the power supply, and lift the power supply straight up and off of the main body. Set it aside.

    • There are 2 power pins connecting the motherboard to the power supply as you remove it.

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Edit Step 20  ¶ 

  • The screws holding the blu-ray drive to the main board have already been removed in a previous step.

  • Unplug the power connector (gray) on the side of the player.

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Edit Step 21  ¶ 

  • READ THIS ENTIRE STEP BEFORE PROCEEDING. Lift the player up slowly to expose the folded ribbon cable beneath it.

  • Remove that ribbon cable from the main board and set the drive/cable aside.

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Edit Step 22  ¶ 

  • Remove the ribbon cable attaching the on/off and eject switch circuit board to the main board.

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Edit Step 23  ¶ 

  • Remove the 4 Philips #2 screws retaining the circuit board to the case.

  • Remove the circuit board from the case.

  • These screws are medium length, different from most of the other Phillips #2 screws.

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Edit Step 24  ¶ 

  • Remove the 9 screws from the main body.

    • 5 Medium Philips #2 Screws

    • 2 Small Philips #1 Screws

    • 1 Ground Philips Screw with Washer

    • 1 Bolt Philips Screw (under AC cord)

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Edit Step 25  ¶ 

  • Grab the main board at the locations shown in the picture and lift the main board off of the back casing.

  • Set aside the black shell.

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Edit Step 26  ¶ 

  • On the main body, locate the 5 plastic locking tabs holding the rear plastic I/O shield to the main body.

  • Pry the tabs away from the body and lift the rear shield away.

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Edit Step 27  ¶ 

  • Remove the fan power connector.

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Edit Step 28  ¶ 

  • Remove the 3 Philips #2 screws holding the fan to the main body.

    • These are extra small screws

  • Lift the fan straight up and out of the body.

    • Check out the size of this thing.

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Edit Step 29  ¶ 

  • On the top of the mainboard, EVENLY remove the four large Philips #2 screws holding the heat sink.

    • Removing them evenly reduces strain on the GPU and CPU.

  • Remove the plates and the screws from the main board.

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Edit Step 30  ¶ 

  • Flip the main board over.

  • Lift (or pry with fingers) the heat sink straight off of the mainboard and processors.

  • Force will be required as the thermal paste "glues" the heat sink to the processor.

  • Note: If new thermal paste is readily available, clean the old paste off well and apply new thermal paste at the time of reassembly. If new thermal paste is not available or you are cheap, do not disturb the "old" thermal paste.

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Edit Step 31  ¶ 

  • Remove the 2 Phillips #0 screws from the hard drive enclosure.

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Edit Step 32  ¶ 

  • To expose the mainboard, remove the watch battery from the mainboard.

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Edit Step 33  ¶ 

  • Using spudger, carefully pry the metal shielding away from and off of the top of motherboard.

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Edit Step 34  ¶ 

  • Turn the motherboard over and remove the metal shielding on the opposite side. Pry with a spudger or with your fingers.

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Edit Step 35  ¶ 

  • Check out all the chips with heatspreaders on this thing.

    • There's the Emotion Engine chip and Graphics Synthesis chip that allows the sweet backwards compatibility.

    • IBM Cell processor... This CPU has 9 cores, 10 threads and it runs @ 3.2GHz which makes it very powerful.

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Edit Step 36  ¶ 

  • More Chips!

  • IBM Cell Processor

  • Nvidia RSX

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Edit Step 37  ¶ 

  • Consider your PS3 disassembled.

Required Tools


$2.95 · 50+ In stock

Phillips #00 Screwdriver

$5.95 · 50+ In stock

Phillips #1 Screwdriver

$5.95 · 50+ In stock

Phillips #2 Screwdriver

$4.95 · 13 In stock

TR8 Torx Security Screwdriver

$4.95 · 50+ In stock

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Comments Comments are onturn off

ii got a broken ps3 from my step dad, it turns on but theres no picture. I've taken it apart 3 times now and couldnt figure out how to get it fully apart. I've put everything back together and it does the same thing. So i didnt mess it up and more than it was. lol. From what i was told it was on top of a tv and a dog caught the cord and pulled it down. It slammed down on the back of the system and hasnt been able to show video and sound. Like i've said, i've tryed to mess with it but i know nothing about this stuff. Any ideas as to what could be broken? The port itself is cracked, but i've tryed HDMI and that doesnt work either. Any advice is helpful. Thank you.

shujinflik, · Reply

id say reflow its gpu it came loose

Nick, · Reply

Mine was a T10

Zach Tharp, · Reply

this screw came out using a phillips #1or#2 with no issue.

turtlefresh, · Reply

The annotation on the photo in Step 9 is inaccurate. The blue circle should be aqua/cyan coloured, while the two cyan/aqua coloured circles should be blue. No biggie, great disassembly otherwise.

paulius, · Reply

Quote from paulius:

The annotation on the photo in Step 9 is inaccurate. The blue circle should be aqua/cyan coloured, while the two cyan/aqua coloured circles should be blue. No biggie, great disassembly otherwise.

I double checked it, it should be correct. There is only one medium screw and two small screws.

Mint137, · Reply

If you leave the two small screws until after you remove the top (they aren't attached) it will make things easier because the card readers will stay down and there will be no ribbon cable to deal with when removing the top.

Julian Turner, · Reply

Power connector on my 20gig launch unit was epoxied. If this is the case with yours be VERY careful. Mine popped off the board, now searching for a fix.

Ryan Burns, · Reply

Remove the ribbon cable from the drive end, not the motherboard end. The clip holding the ribbon cable to the motherboard is difficult to reattach and will often snap. It does make it a bit more difficult to disassemble but far safer.

Root Ginger, · Reply

I broke off one of these screws, 'Philips #2 screw' has not gotten me a correct screw from google.

Any clue what exact screw this would be?


I have an idea how I could remove the broken screw, but any suggestions?

R zaiD, · Reply

Search on Ebay under PS3 Screw there are some on there with clamps.

Root Ginger,

Looks to me if your goal is to replace the thermal paste, this is as far as you need to go. Apply the new paste and begin reassembly. Here's a video showing how to apply the paste:

objbuilder, · Reply

i have a SERIOUS PROBLEM. i put my ribbon cable from my bluray drive into my ps3 while it was on and i heard a pop. the drive was no loner able to recieve power and i saw someone else had the same problem but on a differnt ps3. they said it was the ic chip on the daughter board and i dont even know where that is.... im only 16 and i plan on being an electronic engineer can anyone please help me because im a SEMI-noob future genius noob now.

Isaac King, · Reply

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