The Jaguar PlayOne

The Jaguar CD, whatever people may say about it's aesthetic design, is a great peripheral. It adds a lot to the Jaguar base system and arguably enhances the console's capabilities much more than the Sega Mega CD did with the Mega Drive. The thing is, due to the tiny user base of the Jaguar at the time of release, the Jaguar CD just didn't find it's way into many homes and is commonly described as a failure of epic proportions. It is well documented that Atari were looking at potentially releasing an 'all in one' Jaguar and Jaguar CD called the JagDuo, which featured a cartridge slot at the rear and a rather eye-catching glossy black CD drive door. If this had been the Jaguar's design from the beginning, I'm pretty confident that Atari could very well have found themselves with a much more successful console on their hands. Sadly the JagDuo (below) was never actually released and the rest is history. Hindsight is such a wonderful thing.

This story doesn't end there though. It seems that one very talented gamer isn't happy with hindsight and has gone to the lengths of creating his own Jaguar/Jaguar CD hybrid - the Jaguar PlayOne:

Constructed from several Jaguar consoles and a CD unit, as well as having a built in PSU and a cool-as-hell LED lens that runs across the front of the console like a Cyclon's visor, I think you'll agree that the PlayOne looks awesome. Here's a brief description from the creator 10p6, as published on the forum:

To make it I used: 2 Jag cases, 1 CD case, ABS plastic sheets of different thicknesses, epoxy putty, bondo and a bunch of other stuff. The idea is to keep the case as close to the original spec as possible. That meant using ABS plastic for most of the case, and ABS is hell to sand and work with. As I mentioned before somewhere, I also designed everything so it could be molded if I get it fully finished.

This project is designed to use existing Jag PCB and Jag CD PCB / Drive. So it is a simple case of taking them out of the original case and screwing them into PlayOne. (Nothing is damaged.) The internal PSU plugs into the 9V Jacks on the Jag and CD. This is one reason why the expansion bay is not very high, as the case is below the 9V CD power port. I could have made more room, but that would have required de-soldering the Port which I did not want to do. The front lens also just clips over the LED (which would normally just be Red (States) or (Green Europe.) Even the power button is just lengthened and has no direct attachment to the PCB.

It should be noted that the PSU in PlayOne is regulated, and generally outputs 9.2 to 9.4 volts. Furthermore using 110V here in the States, the PSU uses 0.0 to 0.1 watts in standby (Back power switched on, but Jag off) The Jag PSU's here in the states use 3 watts each while idle, so that's 6 watts of power being wasted while the Jag and CD is turned off. Playing Cart games the PSU and Jag use about 7.3 watts, and CD games between 11 and 13 (while CD is spinning.) So the PSU is very efficient, and can save a bit not money in Electric during usage, and when it is not being used. If the back switch is turned off, it uses no power at all.

From what I can gather, 10p6 doesn't have any plans to mass produce these PlayOne units - the scarcity of Jaguar CDs probably has something to do with that - but as a one off custom console it really is a fantastic looking system. It has many features a regular Jag and Jag CD combo can only dream of - such as the built in RGB and S-VHS output, as well as multiple connectivity options as standard. It's a fantastic piece of work and one that deserves to be shown off. Finally, here's a video showcasing the mod:

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