Turbografx 16 and TurboExpress – Showing off my video game collection part 2
Today I am showing off my TurboGrafx 16 and its portable equivalent called the TurboExpress. The Turbografx 16 was introduced in late 1987 In Japan and in 1989 in North America. It beat the other 16 bit systems by several years. However the 16 was a bit of misnomer as it actually had an 8-bit CPU, but a 16 bit video processor. It had good performance from its very capable 7.16Mhz Hudson Soft CPU. It has 8kB of working RAM and 64kB of video memory giving developers a much needed RAM boost over the market leading consoles of the time. The system had a much higher allowable resolution and a 9 bit color palette which made the games stand out from the NES. The Turbografx 16 also had the first CD-ROM drive for any console. I haven’t been able to get one yet, but when I do I will make sure to post about it. ☺
The CD-ROM Aux Port
The Controller -- It has very nice turbo switches included. Not shown is its relatively short cable.
The games came on a proprietary card called a HU-Card. They are roughly the size of a credit card, but slightly thicker. The HU-Cards despite their small size were capable of holding up to 20Mb games.
The TurboExpress hardware was released in December of 1990. It was a very advanced system at the time with a backlit TFT Active Matrix screen. It retailed at $249 when it was introduced which was quite expensive compared to other portables of the time. The screen was beautiful and very advanced for the time. I remember wishing for such a nice screen for my Gameboy. However that beautiful screen came at a cost in terms of battery life. 6AA batteries would only last about 3 hours. There are several flaws with the system: The audio circuit had some capacitors that would die quickly causing a drop in volume even in the audio jack. Mine suffers from this problem. A second flaw was the active matrix screens often had bad pixels. Mine has 1 bad pixel, fortunately it doesn’t affect gameplay dramatically.
--TurboExpress back-- 6AA batteries and only 3 hours gameplay
TurboExpress TV Tuner
Tried to see if there were any straggler stations still broadcasting on either VHF/UHF. All I got was static. :(
Because this post is already pretty long I will continue with the games for the Turbografx 16/Turboexpress in the next part.
If you missed the first part from my video game collection here it is: