Top Reasons for a Slow PSP

Last week a friend of mine went to Singapore and then brought home a PSP for her kids. It was working great. All her games loaded properly. The sound was great. The controls were awesome. It was also fast. 

However, after a week or so of playing it started to really slow down. It wasn’t just slow. It was really, really slow. The main menu of her PSP was so slow that the screen was sometimes flickering. It would take you about 5 minutes or longer before you can even go to the menu where you can choose and play a game.  

If you even got to choose a game, loading time is impossible to bear. If for some reason you were able to wait (I tried sleeping), the gameplay was in slow motion. 

Image Credit: Baby Turtle 023 by cygnus921

She brought it to a shop she knows and then it turns out that when she bought the PSP, it was already the cracked PSP and the configuration was all wrong. More so, what added to the situation is that her memory was full. Her memory stick had about 2 MB of free space.



1. Set “UMD Mode” to M33 driver NO UMD

The PSP firmware version was 3.71 M33 but is also tested with higher versions like 3.8 M33. These firmware versions should have the UMD mode to M33 NO UMD.


To set the following you need to go to the Configuration Page. To go there you need to:

i.                    Turn off your PSP

ii.                  Press and hold the R button. While doing that, slide and hold the power button up. This would turn on your PSP. You should hold until the black screen appears saying “M33 Recovery Menu Configuration”

iii.                If the PSP just turns on to the normal menu, just repeat the two steps above.


 2. Set “Use VshMenu” to Disabled.

 It is also in the configuration page. Use the steps above and you should be able to find it.

Now after these two steps, if you continue no further, your PS would run faster – but only for the menu screen. The menu would be fast and really responsive. However, try playing a game. You would notice that loading is still slow and the gameplay is still played in slow motion.


Still Slow..

Image Credit: Speedy by me’nthedogs


3. Set the CPU speed to Default.

Now this is really important. The CPU may not really be used when playing music or in the menu screen but its very important when you play games.

There are two settings you need to adjust. Speed in XMB and Speed in UMD/ISO. For us normal users we just need to set these two to “Default”.

After this, your PSP should be running ok. However, I recommend that you do another step which would also help the performance of your PSP.


4. Free up memory from your Memory Stick.

You can do this using two methods. One, you could connect your PSP to your PC using a USB cable. Two, you could remove your memory stick and use a card reader. I prefer the second method but you may use any of the two.

Method Two: Remove your memory stick and use a card reader.

Image Credit: New Memory card slot by Jake of


Freeing up memory is easy, if you know what files to remove. As my friend is not really using her PSP for music and videos, majority of her files are game files. What she does is that she just puts games that she really plays. I recommend doing the same for your PSP.

Game files are located at the folder named “ISO”. The game files have a .CSO file name extension. You don’t need to delete them. Just transfer them to your hard disk. That way, when you want to play them again, you just have to transfer them back to your memory stick.

But if you have music and video files that take up much space, I recommend that you look into those first. Normally you would like to have at least 500MB of free disk space. You’d need the space for your game saves.

My friends have done the steps above with ease and have solved their slow PSP problems. Most of them, if not all, had to do all four mentioned above. The first three usually solves the problem.

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  1. Siz says:

    I have started facing a problem, I don’t know if it is from the beginning, but just now I noticed, while I play Midnight Club: LA Remix, at some places, it flickers, not a giant flickering, it’s like, a name on a wall flickers, and everything goes well. What could be the problem? I am not so expert with PSP stuff.

  2. Mat says:

    thanks so so so much my psp has now come back to normal and am so greatful

  3. Connor says:


  4. mehru says:

    oh thank u thank u thanku my psp is back to normal :P
    thumbs up for ige :)

  5. dexter says:

    yes it worked!

  6. Marck says:

    Thank you so much!

    Everything is back to normal..

    Thanks again!!!

  7. Brandon says:

    Huh. Turns out that my PSP was set on the slowest CPU clock speed; don’t know how that happened. I guess that explains why my Popsloader was running so slowly.

  8. arshad says:

    thanks man . u really helped mee. my psp was soo slow and even the screen was flickering…! thanks to u man…

  9. Louie says:

    wtf!!!!! this is great!!!!!! thanks a lot!!!! :)

  10. flor says:

    Thank so much!!!

  11. tousif says:

    AMAZING WORK!!! thannnxxx a ton!!! :) \m/

  12. tmonry213 says:

    thanks guys but eat a nut!

  13. TROY says:

    MAN YOU ARE IT!!!!! I owe you 6 bucks man!!!!

  14. Gay says:

    you are awesome!! Thanks. :D

  15. Somebody555 says:

    Hellow I have PSP go and I need help it is going very slow and I have 6.7k MB free space I have the same problem as you do it takes more then 5minuts to go to the menu screen…

  16. cOOl DudE! :))) says:

    Thanks a lot!!
    I was so afraid that my psp would never work properly again
    Thanks again!!! :)

  17. Adrenna says:

    Thank you sooo much! It really worked well now!

  18. Totsukatomofumi says:

    Ty it work perfectly… Now I can enjoy my songs perfectly without lagging and the flickering. Ty. :D

  19. xavier says:

    ultimate giga thanks bro!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  20. o! says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! Could not figure out why the heck the screen was jumping. This post was a lifesaver!

  21. fArOox says:

    u r the man love u soooooooooooooooooo

  22. masked rider kabuto says:

    thanks psp works properly again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  23. Aida says:

    Thanks so freain’ much man!! My psp was going slow and the screen kept flickering and shaking :/ thanks to you it’s going perfectly normal I owe ya big time!! :)

  24. atul mishra says:

    if your psp system are custom firmware,you can try this step.

    go recovery menu
    1)choose CONFIGURATION,change UMD MODE to M33 DRIVER -NO UMD-
    2)choose CPU SPEED,make UMD/ISO – 333/166
    3)choose CPU SPEED,make XMB – 333/166

    or press select button.
    1)change UMD ISO MODE – M33 DRIVER
    2)change CPU CLOCK XMB – 333/166
    3)change CPU CLOCK GAME – 333/166

  1. PSP Problems says:

    [...] cheap media cards can slow down your PSP too… (best to use a Sony brand) Check out this site… Top Reasons for a Slow PSP – TechieChips Reply With Quote   + Reply to Thread « Previous [...]