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Bandai TV Jack 5000

The TV Jack series of consoles were brought to market by Bandai, beginning in 1977 with the TV Jack 1000, The 5000 is a rare early console released in 1978, retailing 19,800 Yen. The concept had been purchased from General Instruments.

It is often thought to be a Channel F clone, however the cartridges although similar in looks, are shaped differently, and the games are very different technically. Somewhere between 5000 and 10, 000 of the machines were sold. All are now considered rare and are expensive to collect.

This is the first model in the series that used interchangable cartridges. Though they were not programmable ROM carts. They slot horizontally into the front of the machine. It also had two removeable joysticks. The console came in other colours such as beige and yellow, there was also a yellow version with no eject button.

The games themselves were variations on the pong formula, including one that was not only a bat and ball game, but a vertical Breakout one to, the ball if missed by the player, will travel behind and strike a wall, taking out a block. There were only four cartridges for the machine., they were:

No.1: Ball game

No.2: Road race

No.3: Stunt cycle

No. 4: Block 10

Games for other equivalent console ( Hanimex SD-050, Prinztronic Micro 5500, Binatone Cablestar, Radofin telesports, etc... ) would theoretically work on it since it's the same General Instrument chipset. Though of course the cartridges were different in shape, so would need converting to work.

The machine was followed by the TV Jack 8000, which featured ROM cartridges for the first time.

 

Our TV Jack 5000 arrived with the kind generosity of Johnny Blanchard

Manufacturer: Bandai
Date: 1978

This exhibit has a reference ID of CH62887. Please quote this reference ID in any communication with the Centre for Computing History.

 
Bandai TV Jack 5000


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