The fabled SNES PlayStation prototype has been turned on and disassembled

Remember that fabled SNES-PlayStation prototype that popped up on Reddit earlier this year? The one that was a result of an ill-fated Nintendo-Sony partnership to bring CD games to the SNES, and where all units were supposed to have been destroyed? Well, the owners of said prototype are back with a fresh set of photos, a teardown, and a video of the SNES-PlayStation in action—if this thing is a fake, it’s one hell of an elaborate one.

The folks over at Engadget had the privilege of turning on the console, which boots up to a “Super Disk” splash screen unlike anything previously seen from Nintendo or Sony. Unfortunately, while the unit plays SNES games just fine via its cartridge slot, the CD drive isn’t functional. An X-ray and disassembly found that the CD drive was still receiving power, leading to speculation that perhaps it had been purposefully disabled.

Other cool titbits from the disassembly include the discovery of joint Sony and Nintendo branded chips on the circuit board, as well as a number “2” label on various components, indicating that perhaps the prototype is the second out of the alleged 200 units made.

Speaking to Engadget, Terry Diebold—who owns the prototype—explained how the console came to be in his possession, which turned out to simply be a case of being in the right place at the right time: a company’s liquidation auction.

“The company I worked for, Advanta Corporation [a banking company], they filed for bankruptcy (November 8th, 2009),” he said. “When they did that, we purged the buildings. What you do is you take pictures, you itemise, and then they had an online auction. And I had gotten into the auction myself because there were a few things I wanted to buy. So I knew what were in certain lots. And when they called out the certain lot number, I raised my panel and I ended up winning it. You want to hear the ridiculous price? $75.”

Luckily for Diebold, one of the board members, Olaf Olafsson, was the CEO at Sony Interactive Entertainment, Inc., and held an office at Advanta.

At this point, it’s extremely unlikely that this SNES-PlayStation prototype is fake. Here’s hoping the owners can find someone to get that CD drive working—the world needs to know if it can play PlayStation games, too!

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