Console Mods: Widening The Mega Drive Cartridge Slot
By Mean Machines Staff - 03 Feb, 2016
Do you remember the dark old days of being a videogame fan in the UK? Sometimes there would be a torturous wait for games which you wanted to hit your region. Try as you might you couldn't get a Japanese cartridge to fit in the slot of your PAL Mega Drive. While it would have been cool to have online slots or even Vegas slots the time just had not arrived and you'd be left feeling a bit silly trying to stick that Japanese cart where it just would not fit.
But the great thing about the Mega Drive was how it could be modded. Who remembers the mod to add a switch which could toggle between 50Hz and 60Hz output? That was a real game changer! Finally you could play imported games in full screen instead of squashed letterbox mode, crucially they would play at full speed too. Almost 20% faster than the normal PAL speed. If you ever played Sonic the Hedgehog in 50Hz, finally making the jump to 60Hz is a revelation.
So once this 60Hz mod is done, the next thing to do is deal with the cartridge slot. Unless you do you will still not be able to play Japanese imports as the cartridges are bigger than what the PAL Mega Drive will allow. The trick here is simply to file down the two tabs and widen the slot for cartridges. Now foreign cartridges will fit nice and snuggly and you can play games as they were always intended to be played on your UK console.