Forgotten Consoles: That time Sega put the Genesis on airplanes

In the 90s Sega was in direct competition with Nintendo. Not just with their home consoles, but with their portable systems as well. We all know who the winner was in that battle, but Sega proved that it was willing to try new things and one-up Nintendo at just about every corner. The Sega Mega Jet was one of those things.

So, what was the Sega Mega Jet? It essentially was the predecessor to the Sega Nomad, a portable console that could play Genesis games. Only the Mega Jet lacked a screen. Initially, the console was rented for use on Japanese Airlines

The device lacked its own screen but could play Mega Drive cartridges when connected to a small armrest monitor used on JAL flights. The unit featured a directional pad on the left side and six buttons on the right, similar to the layout of a game controller. There was a second joypad port on the bottom of the Mega Jet for multiplayer games.

A consumer version of Mega Jet was released by Sega of Japan on March 10, 1994 at the cost US $123. It was essentially the same as the unit that was used on JAL flights, meaning that it still lacked a screen and couldn’t be powered without an AC adapter. Other than the addition of a mono DIN plug cord and the necessary AC adapter, no other additions or improvements were made.

Sega Wikia

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Forgotten Consoles: Wondermega

This particular licensed Sega system was manufactured by JVC, released as the X’Eye in the US. Compatible with Mega Drive and Mega CD formats, the console originally boasted some quality audio and video output methods before it was iterated upon.

The Wondermega went through several renditions, all keeping the same theme and design. Sega would eventually would release their own version of the Wondermega, seen above.

The Wondermega (ワンダーメガ) is a combined Sega Mega Drive and Mega CD which was made by JVC/Victor and was initially released in 1992. It features a DSP for audio enhancement, a MIDI output jack, two microphone inputs and S-video output. In 1993, a redesigned model known as the Wondermega M2 was released, which dropped several features (including the MIDI output, DSP and motorized disc door) but added wireless controllers. Victor released the system in the US as the X’Eye, but not in the same way as they did in Japan. The system never made it to Europe, although several magazines back then had predicted an official European release.

Like the Mega CD, the Wondermega and X’Eye are compatible with CD+G (CD and Graphics) discs. The original Wondermega also supported the “Wonder CD” peripheral, which included a full complement of MIDI jacks (in, out and thru) as well as a music keyboard called the “Piano Player”.

The Wondermega is compatible with the 32X, although it looks a bit odd when connected. It also blocks the cd door so the 32X must be removed every time the CD drive needs to be opened.

-Sega Retro

More can be found at segaretro.org

 

Forgotten Consoles: PSX

The original PlayStation sometimes garnered the abbreviation “PSX,” however Sony actually released a variant of the PlayStation 2 of the same moniker.

Only released in Japan, the system was mainly marketed as a digital video recorder, touting PS2 hardware and a few other notable features such as PSP linking and video/audio editing.

The device is a fully functional digital video recorder with an included Infrared remote control and S-Video, composite video, and RFinputs. It is able to tune analog VHF and CATV. It can also be linked with a PlayStation Portable to transfer videos and music via USBports,[3] and features software for non-linear video editing, image editing and audio editing.[4] DVD+R support was to be introduced in a future update.[needs update]

It was the first device to use Sony’s XrossMediaBar (XMB) graphical user interface, which was later used on the PlayStation Portable,PlayStation 3, and 2008-era BRAVIA TVs.

The PSX fully supports both PlayStation and PlayStation 2 software by its slot-loading DVD drive, as the onboard EE+GS chip is a unification of the PS2’s Emotion Engine and Graphics Synthesizer chips. Online game compatibility is available using the broadband connection; Games that use the PS2 HDD (such as Final Fantasy XI) are supported as well.[5]

While the PSX is not supplied with any game controllers, there are two controller ports on the back of the device. Black or Ceramic WhiteDualShock 2‘s with 4-meter long cables were sold separately,[6] and standard DualShock and DualShock 2 controllers were also compatible. Two PlayStation memory card ports were on the front of the PSX, behind a panel cover.[7]

Like the “regular” PlayStation 2 models, the PSX can be laid horizontally or stood vertically.

-Wikipedia

Forgotten Consoles: Panasonic Q

The Panasonic Q might be a bit familiar to some and it’s not a completely original console. The Q is basically a Gamecube that supports full-size DVD’s as opposed to just mini-DVDs. It’s still easy to pass by, but if you’re going to talk about the Gamecube, this is bound to come up.

The Panasonic Q. Released only in Japan.

The console itself sported a few extra hardware features, but otherwise wasn’t that special.

The Panasonic Q (sometimes known as Q and GameQ) is a hybrid version of the Nintendo GameCube with a DVD player manufactured by Panasonic in cooperation with Nintendo. The system was officially released only in Japan. A feature of its main competitors Xbox and PlayStation 2, the GameCube lacked commercial DVD movie playback functionality due to the use of the Nintendo optical disc format for games and the correspondingly small disc tray. The Q system was licensed by Nintendo and released on December 13, 2001 and listed at US$439.

-Wkipedia

Forgotten Consoles: Sega IR 7000

In the world of smartphones, digital organizers are no longer necessary. But, before then, PDAs and similar devices were fairly common. Who ever thought Sega would make an attempt at one?

The Sega IR 7000 Communicator (SegaRetro.org)

Enter the Sega IR 7000, capable of sending text messages to another IR 7000 along with other functions such as a calculator and calendar. Visit Sega Retro’s site for more info on this device lost to time.

The IR 7000 Communicator is a handheld device manufactured by Casio and released by Sega to the United States in 1994. The IR 7000 acts as a personal digital assistant, and allows IR 7000 users to communicate with each other via an infra-red beam, referred to as a “Magic Beam” on the box and back of the device. The IR 7000 features include the ability to send text messages, play the one or two-player action game “Brain Drain”, create pictures of contacts using 400 facial features, and save phone numbers and addresses with password protection. The device also features a scheduler, calendar, calculator, currency converter, alarm, memo pad, World map, and 10 language settings.

The IR 7000 has much in common with the Casio Secret Sender 6000 (JD-6000) and the Casio My Super Magic Diary JD-6500, including similar button placements, shells, and modes. While not designated with a JD model number, it is likely that the IR 7000 is the successor to the JD-6500. While the IR 7000 has a battle mode, the JD-6000 has a universal television remote and the JD-6500 has a virtual pet. The IR 7000 does not feature Casio branding, however the default name for the owner of the device is “Casio”.

-Sega Retro