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The Pippin was a computer entertainment platform developed by Apple Computers and manufactured by Bandai co. The Pippin was based on the hardware and software architecture of the second generation Power Macintosh. It was intended to not only be a video game console, but also a complete multimedia experience. It could play music CDs and other non-game software titles. It was meant to be an advanced multimedia PC that was easy to use and affordable for most households. Since most homes had a television set in the home already, Apple believed that people would be willing to invest in a low cost computer that connected to equipment that was already present in the home. The Pippin was made a platform that Apple made available to third party manufacturers under license, similar to the 3DO Interactive Multiplayer. The only manufacturers that made Pippins were Bandai in Japan and the United States, and Katz Media in Europe. The Pippin lasted only two years, and ceased production in 1997. It is widely regarded as a failure.
Only 18 titles were released for the Pippin in the United States, although Bandai released as many as 80 in Japan. All Pippin titles could be used on Macintosh computers of the time, although you could not use any Macintosh software on the Pippin without certain modifications. Through heavy modification, some DOS and Windows based programs could also be used on the Pippin.
The Pippin units released in Japan were white colored and were called ATMARK units. The Pippins released in the United States were black and were called @WORLD units. Both units were compatible with numerous accessories, including floppy disk drives and printers. Through two Apple Desktop Bus (ADB) ports, up to four controllers could be used simultaneously. With a special adapter standard ADB mice and keyboards could also be used.
- 66MHz PowerPC 603 RISC Microprocessor
- Superscaler, 3 instructions per clock cycle
- 8 kByte data and 8 kByte instruction caches
- IEEE standard Single & Double Precision Floating Point Unit
- 6 MB combined System & Video Memory
- 4X CDROM drive
- 64 kbyte SRAM Store/Restore Backup
- Easy memory expansion cards in 2, 4 and 8 MB increments
- Stereo 16 bit 44 kHz sampled output
- Stereo 16 bit 44 kHz sampled input
- Separate headphone output with dedicated volume control
- 8 bit and 16 bit video support
- Dual Frame Buffers
- Support for NTSC & PAL composite, S-Video and VGA (640x480) monitors
- Up to 16.7M colors