Sunday, November 1, 2009

Taking screenshots on the PSP


By James Booth

Wouldn't you love to be able to take a screenshot or capture video on your PSP? What better way to prove that high score to your friends and family? Or wouldn't you want to illustrate that awesome combat move? Perhaps you'd like to take screenshots for demonstration purposes, such as in this article. That's precisely what SVCapture for the PSP was designed to do.

The trouble with Sony's PSP, shown in Figure A, is that Sony has severely crippled its usefulness and capability beyond basic gameplay.


Sony's Playstation Portable (click for larger image)

In order to use SVCapture you'll have to have a custom firmware installed on your PSP. A previous article in Computing Unplugged provides instructions on how to install custom firmware, but because of the dubious legality involved in hacking your PSP, you're on your own in locating the necessary files as well as in locating SVCapture. A quick search on Google or Yahoo! Will head you in the right direction.

Due to the underground nature of custom firmware and the applications that go with it, be sure to use caution when searching for the files. There are some nefarious characters out there who will disguise viruses and malware as useful utilities. And yes, we're providing this material for informational purposes only. We would never advocate that you actually go and hack your PSP.

Installing SVCapture

SVCapture's developer was kind enough to create an installation utility, but if that doesn't work for you, as it didn't for me, there are also instructions for a manual installation. For the capture utility, you simply copy the "capture.prx" and "capture.ini" files to the SEPlugins directory of your PSP's Memory Stick as in Figure B.


Copy the capture files to your SEPlugins directory. (click for larger image)

Next, you'll need to either add, or edit the "game.txt" and "vsh.txt" files of the SEPlugins directory by adding the line "ms0:/seplugins/capture.prx" (without the quotes) and then saving the files like the example in Figure C.


Add this line to the game and vsh files. (click for larger image)

This line merely needs to be added to any existing files without altering any other lines in the files.

The SVCapture plugin must be activated in the Recovery menu in order to be used. Enter the Recovery menu by holding down the Right Trigger during the boot process; remember, this only works on a PSP with custom firmware installed. Use the arrows to navigate down to Plugins and select it with the X button.

Then, navigate to the Capture plugin and enable it by selecting it with the X button. You'll need to enable it in both Games and VSH, as shown in Figure D.