Wednesday, September 23, 2009
I mod my UK SNES to run Japanese and American games in 60Hz. (Previously this post also spoke about the DSi, but I've edited it out since it's dated quite a bit)
Region modding a SNES
(click the images for higher resolution versions)
Modding a console is a quintessentially British thing to do; Americans have little need to do so, since by default they have things better than Europeans.
Since the beginning your systems have run at 60Hz, which meant full speed and fullscreen gaming, instead of nearly a 20% reduction in game speed and thick borders at the top and bottom of a squashed screen. You also tended to receive a hell of a lot more games than us, with maybe a few small exceptions. Recent years have seen a few more Euro exclusives, but really, unless you speak fluent Japanese, America is still the country to live for great gaming. Oh sweet glorious America, with your better weather, lower taxes and full speed gaming, how I wish I were there.
Because I hate region locking, today I modded a UK SNES. I could just use my American SNES, but this seemed like a fun thing to do. I used Mmmonkey's website, which features a collection of system mods taken from a variety of other websites,. What's great about it is, Mmmonkey redid all the photos, made the guides very easy to follow with a clean layout, and brought all of them together under one site.
I recommend everyone visit it and mod their systems.
Modding a SNES is quite tricky. It required the lifting of 3 pins, use of a 2.2K resistor, and a lot of patience. But now my system can be flicked between 60 and 50Hz, plus country regions. Of course some games like Mario RPG still won't work, but it's a nifty system to have, especially since I can now run cheaper domestic games in 60Hz!
I also had to widen the cartridge slot to accept US cartridges, which included taking my dad's power drill and removing the internal side tabs as shown in the photos.
In all, about 2 hours worth of work for the whole system, but damn, if it isn't one sexy bit of region free kit. The same aesthetic design as the Japanese Super Famicom, but able to play US cartridges, and running off a domestic power supply. Plus it runs nearly everything!