PlayStation 3 Motherboard Replacement

Featured Guide

Featured Guide

This guide has been found to be exceptionally cool by the iFixit staff.

Replace your PS3's motherboard.

Use this guide to replace a blown motherboard. Replacing the motherboard requires removal of nearly every component in your PS3.

Edit Step 1 Smart Plate  ¶ 

Image 1/2: The screw cover may be underneath a warranty sticker. This sticker will change appearance, and show "VOID" after it has been removed.

Edit Step 1 Smart Plate  ¶ 

  • Use the tip of a spudger to remove the black rubber screw cover from the side of the PS3.

  • The screw cover may be underneath a warranty sticker. This sticker will change appearance, and show "VOID" after it has been removed.

Edit Step 2  ¶ 

Image 1/1:

Edit Step 2  ¶ 

  • Remove the single 8.5 mm T10 Security Torx screw from the smart plate.

Edit Step 3  ¶ 

Image 1/3:

Edit Step 3  ¶ 

  • Pull the smart plate toward the hard drive bay, then lift it off the body of the PS3.

1 Edit Step 4  ¶ 

Image 1/1:

1 Edit Step 4  ¶ 

  • Be sure to keep track of the small metal bracket loosely held in the top cover, if equipped.

8 Edit Step 5 Top Cover  ¶ 

Image 1/1: Six 52 mm Phillips screws

8 Edit Step 5 Top Cover  ¶ 

  • Remove the following seven screws:

    • Six 52 mm Phillips screws

    • One 30 mm Phillips screw

2 Edit Step 6  ¶ 

Image 1/1: Remove the top cover.

2 Edit Step 6  ¶ 

  • Lift the top cover from its rear edge and rotate it toward the front of the PS3.

  • Remove the top cover.

Edit Step 7 Blu-ray Disc Drive  ¶ 

Image 1/1: Pull the connector straight up and out of its socket.

Edit Step 7 Blu-ray Disc Drive  ¶ 

  • Disconnect the Blu-ray power cable from the motherboard.

  • Pull the connector straight up and out of its socket.

Edit Step 8  ¶ 

Image 1/1:

Edit Step 8  ¶ 

  • Lift the Blu-ray drive from the edge nearest the power supply and rotate it away from the chassis enough to access its ribbon cable.

7 Edit Step 9  ¶ 

Image 1/3: Be sure you are prying up on the retaining flap, '''not''' the socket itself.

7 Edit Step 9  ¶ 

  • Use your fingernail to flip up the retaining flap on the Blu-ray ribbon cable socket.

  • Be sure you are prying up on the retaining flap, not the socket itself.

  • Pull the ribbon cable out of its socket.

  • Remove the Blu-ray drive from the PS3.

  • If replacing the Blu-ray drive, transfer the power cable to your new drive.

1 Edit Step 10 Motherboard Assembly  ¶ 

Image 1/1:

1 Edit Step 10 Motherboard Assembly  ¶ 

  • Pull the control board ribbon cable straight up and out of its socket on the motherboard.

Edit Step 11  ¶ 

Image 1/2: Remove the control board and its attached cable from the PS3.

Edit Step 11  ¶ 

  • Remove the two 12 mm Phillips screws securing the control board to the lower case.

  • Remove the control board and its attached cable from the PS3.

Edit Step 12  ¶ 

Image 1/1: Seven 12 mm Phillips screws (ph2)

Edit Step 12  ¶ 

  • Remove the following eight screws securing the motherboard assembly to the lower case:

    • Seven 12 mm Phillips screws (ph2)

    • One 30 mm Phillips screw

Edit Step 13  ¶ 

Image 1/1:

Edit Step 13  ¶ 

  • Remove the control board bracket.

Edit Step 14  ¶ 

Image 1/2: Remove the hard drive bay cover.

Edit Step 14  ¶ 

  • Use the flat end of a spudger to pry the hard drive bay cover away from the lower case.

  • Remove the hard drive bay cover.

1 Edit Step 15  ¶ 

Image 1/1:

1 Edit Step 15  ¶ 

  • Lift the motherboard assembly out of the lower case.

1 Edit Step 16 AC Inlet  ¶ 

Image 1/1:

1 Edit Step 16 AC Inlet  ¶ 

  • Remove the 7.7 mm Phillips screw securing the ground strap to the chassis.

Edit Step 17  ¶ 

Image 1/2: While depressing its locking mechanism, pull the AC-In connector out of its socket on the power supply.

Edit Step 17  ¶ 

  • Pull the AC-In cables slightly away from the rear cover for clearance to access the AC-In connector.

  • While depressing its locking mechanism, pull the AC-In connector out of its socket on the power supply.

3 Edit Step 18  ¶ 

Image 1/1:

3 Edit Step 18  ¶ 

  • Pull the AC inlet out from the bottom of the rear cover, minding any of its cables that may get caught.

Edit Step 19 Rear Cover  ¶ 

Image 1/2:

Edit Step 19 Rear Cover  ¶ 

  • While lightly pulling the rear cover away from the logic board assembly, use the flat end of a spudger to release the clips along the top and bottom edges of the rear cover.

Edit Step 20  ¶ 

Image 1/1:

Edit Step 20  ¶ 

  • Remove the rear cover from the logic board assembly.

Edit Step 21 Heat Sink  ¶ 

Image 1/2: Disconnect the fan from the motherboard.

Edit Step 21 Heat Sink  ¶ 

  • De-route the fan cables from the plastic finger molded into the heat sink.

  • Disconnect the fan from the motherboard.

  • Pull the connector straight up and out of its socket.

1 Edit Step 22  ¶ 

Image 1/1:

1 Edit Step 22  ¶ 

  • Remove the two 9 mm Phillips screws securing the memory card reader to the chassis.

1 Edit Step 23  ¶ 

Image 1/2: Flip up the retaining flap on the memory card reader ribbon cable socket.

1 Edit Step 23  ¶ 

  • Lift the memory card reader out of the PS3 enough to access its ribbon cable.

  • Flip up the retaining flap on the memory card reader ribbon cable socket.

  • Be sure you are prying up on the retaining flap, not the socket itself.

  • Pull the ribbon cable out of its socket and remove the memory card reader.

Edit Step 24  ¶ 

Image 1/1: Pull the connector toward the front of the PS3.

Edit Step 24  ¶ 

  • Disconnect the DC-In cables from the front of the heat sink.

  • Pull the connector toward the front of the PS3.

Edit Step 25  ¶ 

Image 1/1:

Edit Step 25  ¶ 

  • Remove the five 9 mm Phillips screws securing the power supply to the chassis.

1 Edit Step 26  ¶ 

Image 1/1: Remove the power supply.

1 Edit Step 26  ¶ 

  • Lift the power supply by its front edge to clear the two posts attached to the motherboard.

  • Remove the power supply.

Edit Step 27  ¶ 

Image 1/1: Remove the two brackets held under the screws you just removed.

Edit Step 27  ¶ 

  • Remove the four 16.5 mm shouldered Phillips screws securing the heat sink to the motherboard.

  • Remove the two brackets held under the screws you just removed.

2 Edit Step 28  ¶ 

Image 1/1: The heat sink may still be held in place by the thermal paste. If this is the case, gently pry the heat sink away from the motherboard housing. Make sure to not bend the copper piping on the heat sink.

2 Edit Step 28  ¶ 

  • Lift the motherboard assembly off the heat sink.

  • The heat sink may still be held in place by the thermal paste. If this is the case, gently pry the heat sink away from the motherboard housing. Make sure to not bend the copper piping on the heat sink.

  • Be sure to apply a new layer of thermal paste when reattaching the heat sink.

  • Never applied thermal paste before? Our thermal paste guide makes it easy.

    • If you're following the YLOD repair guide, stay tuned for where to apply the replacement thermal paste.

1 Edit Step 29 Motherboard  ¶ 

Image 1/2: Be sure you are prying up on the retaining flap, '''not''' the socket itself.

1 Edit Step 29 Motherboard  ¶ 

  • Flip up the retaining flap on the Blu-ray ribbon cable socket.

  • Be sure you are prying up on the retaining flap, not the socket itself.

  • Remove the Blu-ray ribbon cable.

Edit Step 30  ¶ 

Image 1/2:

Edit Step 30  ¶ 

  • Flip up the flap on the memory card reader ribbon cable socket and remove the ribbon cable.

Edit Step 31  ¶ 

Image 1/2: Pull the Wi-Fi/Bluetooth ribbon cable out of its socket.

Edit Step 31  ¶ 

  • Flip up the retaining flap on the Wi-Fi/Bluetooth ribbon cable socket.

  • Pull the Wi-Fi/Bluetooth ribbon cable out of its socket.

Edit Step 32  ¶ 

Image 1/1: Pull the connector straight up and out of its socket on the motherboard.

Edit Step 32  ¶ 

  • Disconnect the DC-In cable from the motherboard and set it aside.

  • Pull the connector straight up and out of its socket on the motherboard.

1 Edit Step 33  ¶ 

Image 1/1: The PRAM socket is delicate and has the potential to break off the motherboard. If possible, hold down the socket as you disconnect the PRAM battery cable.

1 Edit Step 33  ¶ 

  • Disconnect the PRAM battery from the motherboard.

  • The PRAM socket is delicate and has the potential to break off the motherboard. If possible, hold down the socket as you disconnect the PRAM battery cable.

5 Edit Step 34  ¶ 

Image 1/3:

5 Edit Step 34  ¶ 

  • Rotate the PRAM battery slightly counter-clockwise and remove it from the motherboard assembly.

Edit Step 35  ¶ 

Image 1/1:

Edit Step 35  ¶ 

  • Remove the blue 8 mm Phillips screw securing the hard drive cage to the chassis.

Edit Step 36  ¶ 

Image 1/3: Remove the hard drive from the motherboard assembly.

Edit Step 36  ¶ 

  • Push the hard drive cage toward the front of the motherboard assembly.

  • Remove the hard drive from the motherboard assembly.

Edit Step 37  ¶ 

Image 1/1:

Edit Step 37  ¶ 

  • Remove the two 3.7 mm #0 Phillips screws securing the chassis to the hard drive socket.

Edit Step 38  ¶ 

Image 1/1:

Edit Step 38  ¶ 

  • Remove the two 8.3 mm #0 Phillips screws securing the two halves of the motherboard together.

Edit Step 39  ¶ 

Image 1/1: Remove the top motherboard cover.

Edit Step 39  ¶ 

  • Carefully feed the Wi-Fi/Bluetooth ribbon cable through the hole in the top motherboard cover.

  • Remove the top motherboard cover.

Edit Step 40  ¶ 

Image 1/1:

Edit Step 40  ¶ 

  • Remove the motherboard from the bottom motherboard cover.

Edit Step 41  ¶ 

Image 1/2: Remove the Wi-Fi/Bluetooth ribbon cable from the motherboard.

Edit Step 41  ¶ 

  • Flip up the retaining flap on the Wi-Fi/Bluetooth ribbon cable socket.

  • Remove the Wi-Fi/Bluetooth ribbon cable from the motherboard.

  • Motherboard remains.

Conclusion

To reassemble your device, follow these instructions in reverse order.

Now that you've finished, share your repair story with others.

Write a story

38 Comments

Just fixed my YLOD last nite and it works like a charm! best guide on the internet, and it was free! i bought the kit here and it has everything you need minus the gunk off. One thing I'd like to see is how to organize all the screws... I had 2 left over after reassembling the unit. it'll also be nice if the guide showed you how to put certain parts back on (back case, top case units).

It took me a total of 3 hours to do. Not bad considering I don't tear things apart for a living.

other than that, the guide and kit are awesome!

Mike Cha - Reply

Just fixed my PS3 Fat. It's the only one that plays PS2 games so it was hard to part with. Instructions were easy to follow. However, I didn't replace the pads on the chips. PS3 is working beautifully again and the fan is much quieter now. I kept forgetting screws and the WIFI cable so I had to take it apart at least a few more times. Now I can take apart and reassemble the PS3 in my sleep.

Charles - Reply

That small metal bracket/socket set up looks completely different in the ps3 I'm working on. Model: CECHK01.

Any suggestions?

Marcus - Reply

2 more smaller screws (don't know what size...small) just below the top middle screw and top right screw (in the picture). Look for the arrows...

E Goo - Reply

after you remove the screws, you may have to push a tab to take the cover off if you meet resistance on one side of the cover. Here is a link to a video that explains it, saved me lots of trouble:

http://youtu.be/jZgekNsRB-A?t=1m54s

ericksi33 - Reply

Thanks @ericksi33, this really helped me out.

hogurt -

1st attempt, fan loud. Ps3 lasted about 2 wks. 2nd attempt noticed very poor contact between heatsink & cpu,gpu when taking it apart. Research - Found a better way to apply thermal past. I personally disapprove of guide on this. A small bit about the size of a grain of rice in center of cpu is plenty. Clamp the heat sinks back on. Then take it apart & check contact area. Thermal paste should have spread to about the size of a quarter.(more is better. Less then a nickel size is poor contact) possibly weak clamps. Carefully applied pressure onto the cpu & gpu, pressing them into the heatsinks before clamping heatsink clamps on. Achieved greater then quarter sized thermal past spread. Fan silent in comparison & ps3 lasted about a yr. Rarely did I ever hear the fan go to high and get loud after that. About to begin my third fix on this same ps3. One of the first 80g backwards compatible. other then those notes and that this guide was for a different model ps3 (minor differences) I liked this guide. easy to follow.

brettgomes - Reply

Although the battery is described as proprietary, it looks like it is the common CR2032 lithium coin battery that is used in calculators and some computers. I haven't had to replace mine but I suspect under the heatshrink cover is a battery holder which will allow the coin battery to be removed and replaced. Then wrap with electrical tape and reinstall.

RickP - Reply

I tried this with the heatgun and it ruined my PS3. The CPU and GPU are NOW RUINED!!! It did not work for and made things worst!!! I sent it to a place to get reballed and they said the HEATGUN had overheated my processor and killed them!!! So think twice about doing this. Just because it is already broken, DON'T THINK YOU CAN'T MAKE IT WORST!

georgehollyoh - Reply

Why would you try it with a heat gun, no were is it mentioned to do that

Phillip Pereira -

There are 2 additional screws to remove , front center and front left , just behind the already marked screws.

mikentc90 - Reply

Disconnect the memory card ribbon cable.

Tobias Stockmann - Reply

The top would hardly budge on the left back corner and was stuck on the right back corner. There is a plastic hook that needs to be unfastened to lift the top off. It is located in a hole on the top back corner on the right hand side, so the corner straight across the on off button. Just gently push the plastic hook a bit front the rear of the machine with a spudger. It gives easily and the top will be free to lift off after that.

cornellg - Reply

Not all systems look like this, some have tape instead of the flap.

gatewaynomad - Reply

Every system that I have seen has had the ZIF connector, while some had tape over the connection as well. If your connectors are taped, be sure to remove the tape, then proceed with undoing the ZIF connector.

Brett Hartt -

The version 2 systems baseboard PCB started switching to the new narrow 24 pin ZIF header/ribbon and Blu-Ray drive connection.

You should not attempt to detach the taped ribbon cable from the drive end first as described above for the older wide 60 pin ribbons. You must remove the drive and ribbon as one unit to protect the fragile ZIF sockets.

The slimmer fragile ribbon is taped to the drive housing to afford a more secure ZIF connection. The opposite base connection is slightly under the PSU.

continued

shadetree - Reply

From continued

One should firstly remove the PSU: Disconnect the drive power cable as described above. Unscrew the 5 (3-P1 2-P2) PSU mounting screws. Now leaving the power cables attached, lift the PSU off the power baseboard PCB pins and move over slightly to access the baseboard drive cable end ZIF. Release the ZIF latch and slide the entire (drive and ribbon) strait away from the baseboard ZIF to disconnect.

After the complete drive/ribbon removal, you can carefully remove the restraining tape on the bottom of the drive to release the ribbon ZIF, then remove the 24 pin ribbon from the drive logic PCB.

Install in reverse order making sure to add new tape to secure the ribbon to the drive.

shadetree - Reply

I needed to remove the PSO completely to reach the baseboard drive cable end ZIF. To do that disconnect the power and data (I assume) cables and then pull the unit straight up. To longish prongs are heading straight up into it from the baseboard and it is a bit tight, so gently pull until it's clear.

cornellg -

If you are replacing the Blu-ray drive, you must use the same daughterboard that came with your PlayStation 3. The daughterboard is paired to the motherboard, and the Blu-ray drive will not work with a different board. -------------- I understand however my daughterboard is not on the bottom of the blu-ray drive it must be on the inside. Is there any advice out there on how I go about doing this as I am not sure what I am doing???? If someone could post a link or any tips it would be greatly appreciated.

jimmy - Reply

When I received my new drive there was a sheet that said you could keep the old boards but you have to 'flash' them with the ps3's digital information. Currently trying to figure out how.....

Cheffy -

Some PS3 versions do not have a separate control board, since the buttons and LEDS are located on the motherboard (for example, in my PS3 model CECHG04). In this case steps 10, 11 and 13 are not applicable.

markp - Reply

My Ps3 was a little different..

The rear backing plate is connected to the fan shroud beneath the unit that is screwed into the bottom of the case.. And these large chrome pieces attatched to the fan were stuck to the tray that the board is on. Came a part pretty rough, guessing the ps3 got so hot it turned the grease into glue lol

intotec239 - Reply

On my PS3 the ground wire(green/yellow) was actually routed under the bolt for the power supply, so I had to remove the power supply before I could removed the AC inlet

jorgebustos2254 - Reply

I had to loosen the two screws on the perforated cover to get the ground wire out.

asciimo - Reply

Had to remove 2 screws (the top 2 screws marked in step 25) to get the ground cable out.

deuxphoria - Reply

Like @asciimo and @deuxphoria, I had to loosen the same two screws to get the ground wire out. When you're putting the PS3 back together and you're doing the steps in reverse, it helps to leave those two screws unscrewed during Step 25 and wait until you put the AC inlet back in Step 18.

hogurt - Reply

Only the very first release of the PS3 used to have the memory card reader. Most recent models do not have it (such as my PS3 model CECHG04). In this case just skip steps 22 and 23.

markp - Reply

I have a CECHA01 and the card reader is attached to the top cover. Per comments at step 5, the 2 screws mentioned at step 22 are removed at step 5. The ribbon cable mentioned here in step 23 should be removed at step 5.

Jon Tyre - Reply

I had a small black wire taped to the side of my power supply. If you have this - remember to remove the tape, first, or you run the risk of pulling the wire out.

Oliver Clare - Reply

so do we apply arctic silver 5 thermal paste to the heat sink pads that attach to the CPU GPU,Or do we only apply thermal paste to the chips /pads CPU GPU ?

David - Reply

In some PS3 versions, such as my PS3 model CECHG04, the heat sink is attached to the lower half of the motherboard shield, so in order to remove the motherboard you have to lift the top cover and detach the motherboard from the heat sink.

markp - Reply

On my 60GB model, the Blu-ray ribbon cable was very easy to disconnect, but a real pain to re-connect. It's not as easy as pushing the black fap down to secure the ribbon. This YouTube video helped enormously: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zn1pMLGH....

hogurt - Reply

In the most recent PS3 versions, the PRAM battery is located on the motherboard: remove it before performing the reflow and don’t forget to put it back before starting the re-assembly.

markp - Reply

It is quite hard to rotate counterclockwise, but by rotating it slides out, no pulling up is needed. Hard to do by hand, but much easier if you use some flat nose pliers.

jerseyzangel - Reply

Same here. Even with pliers, my PRAM battery was incredibly difficult to remove. When it did finally come loose, part of the black plastic that keeps it secure broke off for me. The whole thing is loose now when I put it back, but still stays in place.

hogurt -

Worked. Took 3 hours to complete.

****NOTES that weren't mentioned here****

1. Heat Gun on processors = zigzag from top left to bottom right - then circle back up to the top left. repeat.

2. No thermal pads available in your area?

I used the same thermal pads that came with the PS3

3. No T-10 security screw driver?

I broke the very first step - I didn't have a t10 security driver and jsut figured I would risk breaking the cover a bit by pulling it straight up - popped right off - then broke the stupid screw right off of it.

4. took 15 minutes to find things to ensure the motherboard we perfectly level.

5. I let the Motherboard sit for exactly 17 minutes and then applied Arctic silver.

6. No Screwtray ?

I used a piece of duct tape, sorta flipped it around so it was a sticky pad to grab all the screws and not let them get unorganized.

I hope I remember to report back how long the system runs until it dies again, which I hear happens fairly quickly after this type of operation.

Good Luck.

infinitist - Reply

I made it the same, thanks

Bartosz - Reply

mine has a small round tab on the PRAM battery housing that locks it in place. i had to slip the flat end of the spudger between the PRAM battery housing and motherboard cover to release the tab. after that it rotated quite easily with no need for pliers or anything.

jcelkay - Reply