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Released in the United states on August 14th, 1989, the Sega Genesis brought 16 bit arcade action to the home. Developed to replace the Sega Master System and its Japanese precursors, the system launched to compete with Nintendo's almost exclusive command of the US video game market. As time passed, thanks to Sega's more open dealing with 3rd party developers, the Genesis allowed Sega to eventually control a majority stake of the US market. Well done.

TECH
Sega Genesis
Manufacturer: Sega
Model: MK-1601
Type: TV game console


Processor: Motorola 68000 @ 7.6 MHz
Zilog Z80 @ 3.58 MHz
Sound:Yamaha YM2612
TI SN76489
Memory: 72 KB main memory
64 KB video memory
Dimensions: 278.1mm x 214.6mm x 57.2mm



Known as the Mega Drive outside of the United States, the Genesis enjoys distribution and success worldwide to varying degrees. This popularity has resulted in a great many games of various genres being produced for the system, but the Genesis has the dreaded region locking. This means that you may need to perform some minor modifications in order to play some games. Not all publishers use region locking, but for those that do, you can often simply use a Game Genie to bypass both the physical impediments, as well as the software locks. As it is most likely that you'll want to play Japanese games, it may just be best to import a Mega Drive from Japan. Be sure to use a US Genesis AC adapter, as Japan's home voltage is lower than American home voltage, and using the Japanese AC adapter can over-volt the game system. While this won't harm it immediately, it does put unnecessary wear on the voltage regulators in the system that ensure the chips only receive the voltage they're designed for.

SPEC
Display: 320x224, 320x448, 256x448
61 colors permitted onscreen simultaneously from a palette of 512
Sprites: Maximum of 80 sprites per screen
20 sprites per scanline
16 colors per palette

Audio: 6 channel stereo sound
8 KB memory



Be sure to never use power adapter for the Nintendo Entertainment system in the Sega Genesis, for while the connector will fit, the NES power adapter outputs AC voltage, which will burn out your Genesis. On the other hand, you can safely use a Genesis AC adapter with an NES, as the NES doesn't really care which polarity it receives in the form of DC current, since it normally takes AC, which alternates the polarity 60 times per second.

You may be surprised to find that Atari joysticks work with the Genesis, with the fire button functioning as the B button. Even more useful is the reverse: using a Genesis controller to play games on the Atari VCS/2600. Lamentably, this doesn't work as well with the Atari 7800, as it uses a different type of wiring for its second button, which is necessary in most 7800 games.

The Power Base Converter, Sega CD, and Sega 32X are add-ons for the Genesis that allow it to play whole other libraries of Sega systems' games, though the Power Base Converter cannot all be used simultaneously with these add-ons, due to both physical restrictions, and memory addressing issues. Nevertheless, this means that you can leave your Genesis connected to your TV practically forever, since you'll have three other systems' libraries to play. I'd say that this makes the Genesis a keystone console above most others.





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