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The Sharp X68000 is a 68000-based computer released only in Japan. It was made by Sharp's consumer electronics department (think: TVs, radios) and sold in the same stores that sold TVs, rather than in computer shops. It was not a runaway success, but several hundred thousand units were sold and the game library boasts the greatest ratio of good:crap of any computer in Japan. Read more...

FIXME This is a WIP, should probably move these large chunks to separate pages.

Technical Data

CPU + Clock Motorola 68000 @ 10MHz (X68000, Pro, Ace, Expert)
Motorola 68000 @ 16MHz (XVI)
Motorola 68030 @ 25MHz (X68030)
768KB Character Generator (16×16, 8×16, 8×8 - JIS 1 + 2)
RAM 1-4MB stock, expandable
512KB Text VRAM
512KB Graphic VRAM
32KB Sprite VRAM
16KB Static RAM
Screen Resolutions1024×1024 Max, 256 x 256 Min
Colours65,536 Palette. 256 Max onscreen
Sprites16×16 pixels, 16 colours / sprite
128 sprites / screen, 16 sprites / line
Graphics HardwareHardware scrolling, priority control, super-impose
Sound2ch FM Synth, 8 Octave, 8 Voice
HDD + FDDVaries by model, see below
PortsSee below
Expansion2 card slots (4 on Pro models)
OSHuman68k (MS DOS-alike developed by Hudson), SX-Windows GUI
Power Input:AC 100v, 50/60Hz
Weight~8kg (~10kg Pro)
Source: X68000 System Manual

Generic & Custom Hardware

The X68000 series featured some very advanced graphics hardware, co-developed by Hudson. It totally eclipsed the Amiga, Atari ST and Macintosh computers which shared the same 68000-series CPU. These chips allowed for virtually pixel-perfect ports of many arcade games.

It also featured a wealth of off-the-shelf chips from a variety of manufacturers. The X68000's Okidata ADPCM sound chip was also used in at least one other game console, and Yamaha was essentially the only soundchip manufacturer of any import back in the day. Chips from Zilog, Motorola, Hitachi and NEC all made their way inside. As was the norm back then every chip that had extra pins was put into service for another device. The printer controller also handled joystick input, the serial controller handled the mouse and the MFP had its fingers in nearly every input or output port available.

Custom Chips
X68000 Ace Expert Expert 2 Super XVI Pro Pro 2
Memory Controller ET OHM OHM2 McCOY
Sprite Controller CYNTHIA / Jr CYNTHIA
CRT Controller VINAS 1 + 2 VICON
Video Controller VSOP VIPS
Video Data Selector RESERVE CATHY
Source: Outside X68000, SoftBank 1993
Generic Chips
Function Part # Manufacturer Notes
Real Time Clock RP5C15 Ricoh
Sound:<br>FM Synth YM2151 Yamaha Paired with YM3012 DAC. 8 note, 2 channel, noise
Sound:<br>ADPCM MSM6258 Okidata Also used in the PCFX
FDD Control 72065 NEC
HDD Control MB89352A Fujitsu SCSI HDD Controller (Super, XVI + X68030)
Peripheral: Serial z85C30 Zilog Dual channel Serial controller. 1 for RS232, 1 for Mouse
Peripheral: Printer 8255 NEC Printer port, joystick ports.
DMA Control HD63450 Hitachi DMA I/O for FDD, HDD, Expansion Slots, ADPCM Audio
MFP 68901 Motorola Multi Function Peripheral controller. Controls monitor sync, Serial port,
real-time clock, soft-power, FM Synth, IRQ, keyboard
Math Co-Pro MC68881 Motorola Optional. XVI has a socket for it, older units require an add-on board
(often combined with RAM expansion)
Source: NFG Games + Inside X68000, SoftBank 1993


Credits, external links, etc.

x68000.txt · Last modified: 2019/08/27 20:45 (external edit)