PS Vita Buying Guide for Hacking & Homebrew

If you want to be able to play PS Vita game backups or homebrew, you’ll need to buy a suitable PS Vita. Use this PS Vita buying guide to purchase the best Vita that will enable you to do this.

Which PS Vita firmware is hackable?

PS Vita’s on 3.60 through 3.72 are hackable. Even Vita’s that have a lower firmware such as 1.03 can be upgraded to 3.60 safely in order to be hackable. Check out the Complete PS Vita Hacking Guide here.

Which Model of Vita is hackable?

As you may be aware, there are two model variants of the PS Vita:

1. PCH-1000

2. PCH-2000 aka PS Vita Slim

Aside from differences in build quality, charger type, and screen type: both are hackable. It doesn’t matter if you buy the 3G/WiFi model either.

Buying one over the other is down to personal preference. I prefer the PS Vita Slim (PCH-2000) due to it being thinner, lighter, and using a non-proprietary Micro USB as its charging method. Although the PCH-1000 has a nicer OLED screen, the PS Vita Slim’s LCD screen is still very crisp and colorful for playing games.

Buying a New vs Used PS Vita

Every new Vita outside of Japan comes with firmware less than 3.60, since no new units are being manufactured. Therefore, buying new is a safe assumption that your Vita will be hackable. An added benefit of buying new is that an 8GB memory card will be included.

Buying used definitely saves money. If you buy used you must be sure to verify the firmware version number before purchasing it. If you buy a Vita with firmware below 3.60 it is possible and easy to update its firmware (ideally to 3.65).

PS Vita Memory Cards

You’ll need to store all of your game backups and homebrew somewhere. Currently there are two types of storage methods you can use. I recommend 32 GB or 64 GB in storage capacity for either method.

1. Standard OEM memory cards

If you want a plug-and-play no fuss way of storing your content, you can use Sony’s proprietary PS Vita memory card. Since there are no new cards being manufactured this method can be pricey.


ps vita buying guide sd2vita

2. SD2Vita – Use a MicroSD card

SD2Vita 5.0

SD2Vita 3.0

Micro SD Cards (SD2Vita supports up to 256 GB)

A new way of storing your content has been developed in order to move away from Sony’s proprietary PS Vita memory card. You can now use a Micro SD card to store all of your homebrew content. Though this takes some setting up, this is my preferred way of storage.

It will use your Vita’s game card slot so if you play a lot of physical Vita game cartridges it may be inconvenient for some users.

Which version of SD2Vita should I buy?

The best version of SD2Vita are version 3.0 and version 5.0. They are made of higher quality materials than previous versions. Additionally, because they are spring loaded, you are able to eject the SD2Vita itself and your micro SD card without fuss.

I own both 3.0 and 5.0 versions of SD2Vita. I’ve bought two bad SD2Vita 3.0 adapters that were dead on arrival. The first SD2Vita 5.0 that arrived worked fine. To be safe, I recommend buying several (2 or 3) of one adapter in case one arrives broken.