Retrotastic Hybrid Nintendo-PlayStation Console Prototype Gets The Teardown Treatment
Back in the day the Sony was supposed to create a CD-ROM add-on for the Super Nintendo. The collaboration fell through and the Nintendo Playstation was relegated to the trashcan of video game history. Ben Heck recently conducted an extensive investigation of the Nintendo Playstation and recently showed viewers exactly what was inside the cancelled console.
Where did someone find this video game “missing link”? Terry Diebold was a maintenance man for Advanta Corporation from 2000 to 2009. The owner of the corporation was Olaf Olafsson, the former CEO of Sony Interactive Entertainment. It was during Olafsson's time that Sony worked to establish a relationship with Nintendo to create a peripheral that would allow the Super NES to play CD games.
After leaving Sony, Olafsson went to work at Advanta, which filed for bankruptcy in 2009. All of the items at Advanta were auctioned off and Diebold bought a couple of boxes. In one of the boxes was the Nintendo Playstation. Diebold’s son Dan recently posted about the console on Reddit and has since been making tech news headlines.
Only 200 devices were ever made and the vast majority were destroyed. The CD-ROM drive itself possessed its own micro-processor in order to feed commands to-and-from the Super Nintendo. This prototype was incredibly mature but it still demonstrated signs of development. There were several wires inside the console that were reassigning pins.
The device definitely contained Nintendo/Sony hybrid tech. The console had a Sony RF modulator and a Super Nintendo S-Video multi-output, either of which could be used to display images on a television. While some of the integrated circuits were standard Sony parts, the audio chips were custom-made for Nintendo. Overall, the device looked on the inside looked incredibly like a Super Nintendo.
The device shows just how committed Sony was to creating the console before the deal fell through, and is a fascinating look into the video game world of the 1990's.