Background and Identification
First released in North America in 1982, the Vectrex is a vector display based home video game console. Developed by Smith Engineering, the Vectrex was the only one ever designed and released for the home market.
Compared to other video-game consoles at the time of its release, the Vectrex was unique because it featured an integrated monochrome CRT monitor and did not need to be connected to a television as it had its own display. In addition, the Vectrex had a detachable wired control pad that was mounted at the lower base of the console and it could be folded away. The Vectrex featured its own built-in game, Mine Storm, that could be played without inserting a cartridge. Also, many games that could be played on the Vectrex came with translucent color sheet overlays that could be placed over the monochrome screen.
Numerous peripherals were produced for the Vectrex such as a pair of 3D glasses, the “3D Imager” and a “light-pen” that allowed the player to draw directly on the screen. Although the Vectrex found success initially, it suffered at the hands of the video game crash of 1983, leading to its discontinuation.
- CPU: Motorola 68A09, 1.5 MHz
- RAM: 1 KB (two 4 -bit 2114 chips)
- ROM: 8 KB (one 8-bit 2363 chip)
- Cartridge ROM: 32 KB
- Circuit Board: MOS 6522 Versatile Interface Adapter (VIA)
- General Instrument AY-2-8912
- MCU Controlled Sound
- 3-inch electrodynamic paper cone speaker