Demo System DS-16
From Sega Retro
|Demo System DS-16|
|Made for: Sega Mega Drive|
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Demo System DS-16 is an add-on for the Sega Mega Drive used for store kiosks. Six Mega Drive cartridges can be inserted into the unit, and then switched between via an extra button (which would be hooked up to a kiosk cabinet). It was not made available to the general public, though some third-party companies announced similar substitutes (such as the Video Jukebox).
The DS-16 was not meant to be seen from the outside, and is therefore an ugly-but-practical unit. It connects to the Mega Drive's expansion port in a not-very-secure way, presumably because unlike the Sega Mega-CD, it was unlikely to ever be moved during play.
Sega went through several kiosks during the Mega Drive years, and this one was primarily used in North America. It only accepts western-style cartridges.
Not much is known about the system but this much is known. The unit does not function with carts that have an SRAM save function built-in like on a Sonic 3 cart. This is no doubt due to the fact that this device was made for the demonstration of games and therefore the store owner would not want any games to have saved progress on them. As of 11/15 it has been confirmed that demo unit serial b10000372 can play SRAM equipped games. Other units might also be capable of playing SRAM equipped games as well.
The system also has a built in timer function that can switch the games automatically at a set interval. The time per game can be adjusted with a potentiometer and it can be turned off completely with a switch on the back.
The image doesn't show it, but there is also a cage that locks into place on the top over the game carts. This is to no doubt help deter thieves should they get access to the unit or perhaps to protect the game carts. It slides in place through two slots in the back and locks in the front with a barrel lock.