We report results of Raman and x-ray photoemission spectroscopy (XPS) measurements of the YBa2Cu3-xZnxO7 and Er1-yPryBa2Cu3O7 systems. No appreciable changes were observed for YBa2Cu3-xZnxO7 in either measurement. On the other hand, Raman frequencies of Ba and apical oxygen (Oz) modes increase and the binding energies of Ba core levels show an increasing trend as y increases in Er1-yPryBa2Cu3O7. Results for Er1-yPryBa2Cu3O7 are consistent with our prevous work for Pr-doped 1:2:3 superconductors and can be explained in terms of hole localization at Ba sites. Our experimental results indicate that the suppression mechanism in the YBa2Cu3-xZnxO7 system is different from that in the Er1-yPryBa2Cu3O7 system.