DECO Cassette System

Arcade System published 40 years ago by Data East

DECO Cassette System screenshot

Listed and emulated in MAME !

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DECO Cassette System © 1980 Data East Corp.

The arcade owner would insert the cassette and a security dongle (This was an early form of copy protection, to ensure the tapes would not be copied) into the cabinet.

When the cabinet was powered up, the program from the tape would be copied into the cabinet's RAMchips. This process took about two minutes. After this, the game could be played.

Main CPU: DECO 222 (@ 750 Khz)
CPU: I8041 (@ 600 Khz)
Audio CPU: MOS Technology M6502 (@ 500 Khz)
Sound Chips: (2x) AY-3-8910A (@ 1.5 Mhz)
Speaker: mono
The DECO Cassette System was introduced in 1980 by Data East and was the first standardised arcade system that allowed arcade owners to change games. The arcade owner would buy a cabinet, while the games were stored on standard audio cassettes.

It was revolutionary for its time, but arcade owners complained about the poor reliability of the cassettes, which could be demagnetized easily, corrupting the game data, and the poor quality of the games offered, as well as long load times...

47 different games were released on this system from 1980 to 1985.
Machine's picture.