Reports of PS4 "Red Line of Death" Appear Online

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Reports of PS4 "Red Line of Death" Appear Online

Some PS4 users' consoles have a blinking red light on the hardware, indicating the PS4 is overheating.

Named the "red line/light of death" as a callback to the Xbox 360's "red ring of death," since the launch of the PS4, some users have reported their PS4s powering off after the console flashes a red light on top of the console. Multiple YouTube videos have shown the same occurrence: the red line flashing and three beeps sounding before the PS4 turns itself off.

According to the PS4's user guide, the red light appears when the PS4 is overheating. The guide advises leaving the system off for a while. If the problem persists, there may be something wrong with the hardware that can't fix itself with a simple reboot. NeoGAF user Inner-G wrote his PS4 got the "red line of death" from overheating because the fans never turned on. He posted a video documenting the problem. Shown in the video, he turns on the PS4, the system checks its storage status and restarts, and after reaching the "Welcome Back to PlayStation" screen, the blue light on the system turns red, the console beeps, and shuts down. Back in October when Yoshida was asked about the "red line of death," he said it was "not true."

Several pre-launch systems, such as ones received through a Taco Bell promotion and ones provided to journalists, had problems and had to be sent back to Sony. Sony Worldwide Studios President Shuhei Yoshida said Sony was aware of "isolated incidents" of PS4 incidents. A Sony representative estimated about 0.4% of pre-launch PS4s had technical issues and said this number was within the company's expectations for an at-launch product. Beyond the "red line of death," users have also had problems of their PS4 systems not responding, and Sony has created a forum for troubleshooting. The pulsing blue light problem seems to be different from the overheating issue of the blinking red light.

While the "red light of death" appears to be an overheating issue rather than permanent brick, if the fans never turn on and if leaving the console alone for a while does not cool down the system, the system most likely cannot be saved.

Source: GameZone

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If this is true and some people are having issues that's unfortunate. At first I was surprised that a console that draws so little power could have heat issues, but then it mentioned the fans not turning on. That would certainly do it.

That red line makes it look like the PS4 is about to go on an 80's cyborg killing spree. Unfortunately the only thing it ends up killing is itself.

Casual Shinji:
That red line makes it look like the PS4 is about to go on an 80's cyborg killing spree. Unfortunately the only thing it ends up killing is itself.

"unfortunately"

Also, it's pretty alarming to see such a large variety of shit breaking ps4s. You'd think they'd take special care with the first batch of consoles

Hope it is just an isolated issue on a small scale, and i hope sony manage to ship new consoles to the people it's affecting.

*awaits the Xbox army to arrive*

Wow, that sucks. I mean, it's not good for Sony certainly, but it really sucks for everyone who bought a PS4 early and had it die on them. You'd think they'd have the foresight to work these things out before the system launched. Did their test models not have this problem or something? Well whatever, I'm sure they'll get it fixed eventually.

I'm thankful that I currently own a next-gen console which hasn't had any overheating problems, and for which there haven't been any widespread reports of any technical issues, so I don't have to worry about it breaking down on me.

Can't they just cut a hole in the side of the console and set it in front of a box fan or something? ;P

Casual Shinji:
That red line makes it look like the PS4 is about to go on an 80's cyborg killing spree. Unfortunately the only thing it ends up killing is itself.

just make sure you never set any of your sony account user names to sarah or john conner and you should be right

silly trying to use a PS4 with a SAMSUNG tv.....tut n00b, his own fault really.

And the 360 had issues at launch too... let's not forget the RRoD. What's going to make all the difference is how they respond to it. If this is still a widespread problem in a year, as it was for the 360 a year after launch, then I'll be more critical of Sony, but if they act quickly to replace faulty units (for free) and prevent this issue in future runs, I won't hold it too much against 'em.

Mostly it needs to be fixed before Ground Zeroes comes out, because that's when I plan on getting a PS4. If this is still a problem, I may well get an Xbox One instead for that alone. I don't care how much I dislike MS, defective hardware on Microsoft's part was the reason I got a PS3, and I wouldn't be ashamed to get an Xbox One over a PS4 for the same reason.

P.S. Thanks

I'd be interested to hear how many developers had issues with dev kits. I mean, the people making games for it have been using the console for a year or two now, so I can't imagine this being too widespread of an issue.

MinionJoe:
Can't they just cut a hole in the side of the console and set it in front of a box fan or something? ;P

I had a friend who did that with his PC. He just took off all the casing and left it sitting in the middle of his room. Everyone cringed each time they saw it. It's a miracle it survived as long as it did.

Vivi22:
If this is true and some people are having issues that's unfortunate. At first I was surprised that a console that draws so little power could have heat issues, but then it mentioned the fans not turning on. That would certainly do it.

Yeah, I know the PS3 had heating issues and it doesn't help that people like to put consoles in spots surrounded by other electronics or heat absorbing materials. I have all my big electronics by the window so the cool airflow takes care of most of it, but I don't think there's much of anything that can be done if the fans don't turn on to start with. Throw all the cool air you want at the case, if the fans refuse to pull it inside the thing is toast.

TiberiusEsuriens:

I had a friend who did that with his PC. He just took off all the casing and left it sitting in the middle of his room. Everyone cringed each time they saw it. It's a miracle it survived as long as it did.

I've done that too! And I've known people to do it with 360s. I was just pointing out that there are technical solutions to the problem without having to rely upon manufacturer warranties. :)

Then again, I forgot that this is Sony we're talking about. Cooling a PS4 with a box fan will likely result getting sued for "illegal modification" of the hardware.

sid:

Casual Shinji:
That red line makes it look like the PS4 is about to go on an 80's cyborg killing spree. Unfortunately the only thing it ends up killing is itself.

"unfortunately"

Also, it's pretty alarming to see such a large variety of shit breaking ps4s. You'd think they'd take special care with the first batch of consoles

I mean, just look at the Amazon reviews (granted they got a blue pulse) there is a thread about it on the Gaming forums and more people are inclined to believe it was the work of 500+ Nintendo/Microsoft trolls (regardless of Amazons official consumer label) than a legitimate problem because "theirs" worked, which means everyone else's should.

MinionJoe:

TiberiusEsuriens:

I had a friend who did that with his PC. He just took off all the casing and left it sitting in the middle of his room. Everyone cringed each time they saw it. It's a miracle it survived as long as it did.

I've done that too! And I've known people to do it with 360s. I was just pointing out that there are technical solutions to the problem without having to rely upon manufacturer warranties. :)

Then again, I forgot that this is Sony we're talking about. Cooling a PS4 with a box fan will likely result getting sued for "illegal modification" of the hardware.

Surprisingly Sony indirectly seems to be supporting that type of hijinks this time around. They've already released a "do it yourself" troubleshooting guide for a lot of small issues and they've also detailed each component, where they sit in the machine, and how to open it and replace the hard drive. Currently they're only one step short of releasing a video detailing exactly how and where to add water cooling to your PS4, but based on this being the internet I'm sure someone else is already making that.

And so it begins,eh? Let's see how M$ responds...

And this, kids, is why I never buy into electronics before they've had a chance to be tested by the masses.

wombat_of_war:

Casual Shinji:
That red line makes it look like the PS4 is about to go on an 80's cyborg killing spree. Unfortunately the only thing it ends up killing is itself.

just make sure you never set any of your sony account user names to sarah or john conner and you should be right

Well, with any luck it'll just turn into this red line...

Vivi22:
If this is true and some people are having issues that's unfortunate. At first I was surprised that a console that draws so little power could have heat issues, but then it mentioned the fans not turning on. That would certainly do it.

Yeah, that'll do it.

We live in a somewhat interesting era where we have so much information that problems impacting just 500 or so people can end up looking like the norm.

I do look forward to finding out the actual numbers of breakdowns. But I'll have to wait for a couple months before any reliable information. We've had this stuff at every launch. Sony says that these fall within expected numbers but I certainly wouldn't trust what companies would say.

Though, if any company knows hardware, it's Sony. So right now I'm leaning more towards this being a thing of rarity. But I'm still happy I don't buy consoles until well after release.

TiberiusEsuriens:

They've already released a "do it yourself" troubleshooting guide for a lot of small issues and they've also detailed each component, where they sit in the machine, and how to open it and replace the hard drive.

Admittedly, I was surprised by that myself. But Sony was also quick to mention that doing anything beyond removing the hard drive cover and screw would invalidate your warranty. From what I've seen, there are anti-tamper seals on everything beyond that point.

And while I've no truck about invalidating a warranty to get the performance I want, I still remember how Sony went after customers that made changes to their PS3s.

Lightknight:

We live in a somewhat interesting era where we have so much information that problems impacting just 500 or so people can end up looking like the norm.

It's odd how that claim only seems to work for bad news. When Diablo III launched, I'm sure over 500 people managed to play the game without a single Error 37. But they certainly weren't portrayed as "the norm" in the media.

MinionJoe:

Lightknight:

We live in a somewhat interesting era where we have so much information that problems impacting just 500 or so people can end up looking like the norm.

It's odd how that claim only seems to work for bad news. When Diablo III launched, I'm sure over 500 people managed to play the game without a single Error 37. But they certainly weren't portrayed as "the norm" in the media.

You've gotta look at it in terms of percentage of units sold. If 500 out of a million run into problems, that's only .05%, which really isn't that bad. If even ten times that, 5000 people could get into Diablo 3 out of its 3.5mil day-one sales, the vast majority of users have run into problems.

There is a time and a place for absolute numbers, but when it comes to failure rates (of anything really, not just electronics or games), it's vital to look at relative numbers. Not just how many people did or didn't have trouble, but how those two numbers compare to each other and to the total sold.

P.S. Thanks

MinionJoe:

Lightknight:

We live in a somewhat interesting era where we have so much information that problems impacting just 500 or so people can end up looking like the norm.

It's odd how that claim only seems to work for bad news. When Diablo III launched, I'm sure over 500 people managed to play the game without a single Error 37. But they certainly weren't portrayed as "the norm" in the media.

Well, it does only work for bad news because bad experiences are what people take the time to report. Want to know how many of my previous 100 Amazon orders I've actually reviewed? 2. They were both bad experiences. I'm by no means unique in that practice.

That being said, Sony said they expected a .4% failure rate at launch (which they claim the numbers fall within). With 1,000,000 units selling that'd be 4,000 failures.

Which stories do you think get focused on? 996,000 successes or the more interesting 4,000 failures?

So that's why I advocate waiting a few months. Actual agreggate numbers paint the story, not reactionary stories. I'm nothing but a numbers man. I'm not going to take negatives hook line and sinker and I'm also not going to take Sony's PR lines hook line and sinker. So my stance is that I look forward to seeing the actual numbers away from the "fog of war".

I'm really glad i bought that year warranty now. The one time I told myself to do it. I feel much safer.

el_kabong:
And this, kids, is why I never buy into electronics before they've had a chance to be tested by the masses.

Pretty much this. I don't want to sound like some smug punk but I honestly just wait a bit when a new console comes out, I'm sure plenty of the consoles are working just fine but there's sometimes a few hiccups that slip past or whatever.

Well I got plenty of PS3 games to keep me well busy till they work out the bugs and what not.

Casual Shinji:

wombat_of_war:

Casual Shinji:
That red line makes it look like the PS4 is about to go on an 80's cyborg killing spree. Unfortunately the only thing it ends up killing is itself.

just make sure you never set any of your sony account user names to sarah or john conner and you should be right

Well, with any luck it'll just turn into this red line...

snip

I was more hoping the red line would turn into this instead

In reality, this is the PS3 gathering its power to turn into a mecha and overtake humanity.

Sadly, its power is so weak that it merely turns off from the straing.

That is soon going to change.

*du-du-dun-dun-dun/stock tension punchline here*

I was intending to wait until sometime next year to pick up a PS4, but I'm one of the lucky people to win one through the Taco Bell giveaway. So far, no issues, though I do notice the top of the unit does get a bit warm, but nothing that doesn't seem normal for electronics. Haven't noticed if the fans are working or not, but if they are, they are very quiet.

I hear if you leave this red line on long enough, George Clooney shows up.

For now this issue seems like its bad but not that bad. Few thousand consoles afflicted it seems. And accusations and stories are flying around wildly. From Amazon's packaging (which is really bad, I would return the shipment if something came that badly packaged), through Sony's penny pinching to sabotage by students working in FoxCon plant...

But really we have to wait for a while for dust to settle to know anything.

This is why I don't early adopt a console, I waited a year for the 360 and still got issues with it. I hope it's sorted for those that are affected, but this is a risk with any new tech for early adopters. You sorta pay to be a beta tester.

Vivi22:
If this is true and some people are having issues that's unfortunate. At first I was surprised that a console that draws so little power could have heat issues, but then it mentioned the fans not turning on. That would certainly do it.

Doesn't help that the thing is freaking tiny and can't have much in the way of heatsinks.

PS4 the Rainbow box of fail. :-) Im joking of course but what colour will it be next? They still got to release in Europe etc

This obviously suck and i do feel for the people that have PS4's that suffer from this issue. I'm absolutely sticking with my idea of waiting at least a year before getting my console. Should be a decent amount of time for issues to appear and hopefully be resolved and enough time for at least a few interesting titles

WouldYouKindly:

Vivi22:
If this is true and some people are having issues that's unfortunate. At first I was surprised that a console that draws so little power could have heat issues, but then it mentioned the fans not turning on. That would certainly do it.

Doesn't help that the thing is freaking tiny and can't have much in the way of heatsinks.

Actually, from the video of them disassembling one which Sony released, the heat sink is relatively large and there was a lot more space than I expected to allow for reasonable air flow. Certainly a lot more than there was in the original PS3's (I disassembled one of the fat PS3's before and the thing was a god damn heat trap it was so cramped in there). But all of the heat sinks and open air in the world won't do squat if you're not circulating in cool air and blowing the warm stuff out.

Robin Nilsson:
This obviously suck and i do feel for the people that have PS4's that suffer from this issue. I'm absolutely sticking with my idea of waiting at least a year before getting my console. Should be a decent amount of time for issues to appear and hopefully be resolved and enough time for at least a few interesting titles

Ditto. I'd really like a PS4, because I've had a Playstation for the last three console generations and enjoyed the hell out of them, but between the hardware issues and the day-one patches (day-one patches to make most of the features on the machine even work, on a console of all bloody things. PS4 and Xbox are both doing this, apparently just to be sure we know how rushed out for the holiday they were) they're doing a really good job convincing me to hold off awhile. Even if the 0.4% pulled-straight-from-ass number is actually true, I don't make enough to afford risking being part of that 0.4%.

It's a sad we as consumers are reduced to this. Imagine if someone going out to buy a new car had to say "I'll just wait a year before I get the new model, just to make sure the brakes don't lock up and the engine doesn't catch on fire like the last one did."

The hidden downside to an extremely successful first wave launch is an increased number of hardware complaints, sadly. even with a 10% error ratio, that'd still be 100,000 customers who bought a product that crapped out on them.

From what I've seen, the PS4's heat control hardware is fairly competent, at least to my layman's eyes. Perhaps there's a flaw with the fans? Hopefully Sony's response will be prompt and efficient.

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