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Dauber

Thinking of getting an NES

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The only NES experience I've had, except for a little bit of emulation, was in the '80s when it was on display at K mart. I didn't want one then (I had a Commodore 64 so I had no desire for a game console other than my extant Atari VCS) but I'm kinda getting curious now.

 

Are there any quirks that a noob like me should know about??

 

What about pricing?? How much should I reasonably expect to pay??

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Toasters ~usually~ need a replacement or repair to the 72-pin connector. It isn't uncommon to find them now with the repair already done. You shouldn't pay more than $80 for a good unit (and at that price with stuff like games, etc.)

 

NES is popular to collect for so prices can be a bit higher but there are plenty of common carts that are also good that can be had for a few dollars each. This system is very sensitive to dirt on contacts and given its age, you'll definitely want some rubbing alcohol and q-tips on hand. You just dab the q-tip in the solution and run it through the contact to pull most of the dirt off.

 

Besides the 72-pin toasters are pretty indestructible and they have RCA jacks (mono sound only) so you can get a good image easily. Zappers are pretty unreliable and don't work right on newer TVs anyway so it can be dicey to get one that responds well.

 

For the 72 pin it is easy to find a replacement on eBay. Many people don't like these replacement pins because they have a very tight grip on the cartridge (I've never had issues). The original pin is very easy to repair. You just toss it in some boiling water for a few minutes to burn off the goo. Sometimes the pins need to be manually realigned if they were subject to a Game Genie (which could bend the pins) but I've never seen one that wasn't a fairly easy fix.

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I highly recommend getting an NES. Awesome console, great games to play but it's a bad time to collect carts since prices are outrageous. I have to say though, a Toaster model should only cost you about $40, give or take..

Get an EverDrive N8 flashcart and you'll have all the games you could ever want to play and then some, all in one cart.

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You must get an NES!!!! That is my top favorite system growing up. They are all over the place on ebay, craigslist, amd could find them at yard sales and thrift stores if you are lucky. I reccommend getting a genuine Nintendo the 001 "toaster" or the 101 top loader. I personally don't like the clones. They feel cheaply made and a few games most notably Castlevania 3 isn't compatible. The games are going up in price for some of the absolute classics. If you want to get one I suggest going for a bundled lot.

 

NES 001 "toaster": These are the most common to find NES systems and were manufactured from 1985 to late 1993. These are the systems that are infamous for the blinking light and flashing screen issues. The positive is it runs RF and AV out. They usually run about $40 for a bare unit. And also get yourself a few 72 pin connectors as they are known to wear out overtime. They cost around $6-$8. But boiling them in water is known to fix them or getting a thin wire to put the pins back in place is a tedious task.

 

NES 101 "top loader": This is the rare breed model and only made from late 1993 to late 1994. Be prepared to break the piggy bank if you want one of these as they run for more than a hundred bucks. These systems are known for it's great reliability, but there is some negatives. They only come RF out and can only do AV by a mod. And on the screen you will barely see vertical lines draped down. As for me I don't notice it all that much.

 

As for the games. There are so many great ones and here are some of the best series.

 

Super Mario Bros series (obvious)

Castlevania series

Mega Man series (these games will cost a lot)

Ninja Gaiden series

Adventure Island series

Legend of Zelda series

Some of the Disney games are great (Duck Tales and Rescue Rangers)

Mike Tyson's Punchout!!

Black box games (Duck Hunt, Balloon Fight, Mario Bros, Donkey Kong Classics, etc)

 

Or the everdrive which is an easy route and get all the roms on an SD card and plugged into the cart.

 

Hope this helps and you will enjoy the NES!! :)

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Weird thing is I've NEVER seen a "toaster" model. Ever. Anywhere. (Those are the top-loaders, right? I know they exist, but I've never seen 'em.)

 

****EDIT****

 

Ah, okay...it seems you NES people have a weird definition of "top"...I DuckDuckGo'd the two models and saw that the front-loader is a weird unit, and the top-loader loads from the front but it's considered a top if you turn the thing on its side, hence the "toaster" nickname....

Edited by Dauber
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Weird thing is I've NEVER seen a "toaster" model. Ever. Anywhere. (Those are the top-loaders, right? I know they exist, but I've never seen 'em.)

This is the top loader model. The toaster is the original one. I don't like the dogbone style controllers that much. The rectangular ones are much better.

 

post-32978-0-42800100-1444095143_thumb.jpeg

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Wait, you say that's the top loader, but that contradicts your previous post...I'm so confused!!

 

Screw it, I'll get a TurboGrafx16 instead. :)

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Wait, you say that's the top loader, but that contradicts your previous post...I'm so confused!!Screw it, I'll get a TurboGrafx16 instead. :)

Oops, sorry about that. :dunce: Made a mistake on my typing. I work overnights and was just awake when I typed it, so it's my bad. I edited it. The TG-16 is great too!! The Bonk Series, Splatterhouse, Pac-Land, Galaga '90, and Blazing Lasers are my favorites.

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The front loader is the "Toaster", nick-named that way because the "moving, vibrating, rattling spring-loaded tin-thing" sound you hear when pushing your cartridge down sounds and feels much like a toaster does when you push the toast down.

 

Also, english muffins go in OK, but bagels don't fit.

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Get a Retron... (what's the newest one?)

I'm seeing a lot of dismal reviews of that thing.

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One of the best ways to clean NES contact pins on a cart is with an eraser. I have gotten even the most oxidized 72 pin connectors to read carts so as long as the pins on the cartridge is super clean.

 

Edited by thadsilverfox

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The front loader is the "Toaster", nick-named that way because the "moving, vibrating, rattling spring-loaded tin-thing" sound you hear when pushing your cartridge down sounds and feels much like a toaster does when you push the toast down.

 

Also, english muffins go in OK, but bagels don't fit.

 

Those load from the front, they aren't toasters. The toaster is a home made version of a Nintendo with the guts swapped into a toaster unit, I've only ever seen one person with one and you're very unlikely to find one of those, especially for $40. I've also heard people call them Nintoasters. Besides those, there are the front loaders and the top loaders. The benefit of the front loader is that it has RCA output but the benefit of the top loader is that the games work much better in it, pretty much first try every time.

 

nt2_top.jpg

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I thought they were called toaster because when the NES cart popped up with a twang, it meant you're done playing.

 

Had a few games completely lose the saves because the cart popped up while it was playing.

 

If you do get a NES, do get PowerPak or Everdrive. About $100 and far cheaper than trying to get the top 10 NES games to play with.

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I'm seeing a lot of dismal reviews of that thing.

As am I.

 

Maybe it's just the newer models, but I have a Retron 3, and it works great.

 

Plus, it's cheaper than a toaster and has 2 other consoles built in!

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The Retrons are hit-or-miss... I read bad things about the early ones, but I know a few people with the new Retron 5 that say it's nice. The 5 plays NES, Famicom, SNES/Super Famicom, Genesis/Mega Drive, and Game Boy/Game Boy Color/Game Boy advance titles. Also outputs in HDMI. Might be worth your time if you're interested in more than just NES.

 

I would definitely pick up a NES, though. It's such a major part of so many people's gaming experience- for good reason!- you'll find no shortage of quality, inexpensive titles around. Definitely check with people you know- odds are someone's got an NES in a closet they're willing to sell so you don't have to resort to Ebay. Any local secondhand shop that deals in classic gaming will have NES, too.

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I personally prefer original hardware over anything, but the compatibility on the Retron5 is pretty good. I just didn't like how long it took to switch games. Anyway, you can BOIL the pins on the edge connector for the NES, there's no reason to buy a new one.

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While I think getting a NES is a great idea I'm going to go out on a limb and suggest getting a SNES instead. Here's 10 good reasons:

1. 16 bit graphics

2. great RPGs/strategy

3. good racers

4. some pretty nice shmups

5. I think Super Mario World beats any of the previous Super Mario titles hands down

6. if you want to play Super Mario you can pick up Super Mario All-Stars which has all 3 NES titles plus the Lost Levels

7. I think Zelda: Link to the Past beats the previous NES Zelda titles hands down

8. other Nintendo classic characters are great - Super Metroid, Super Castlevania, Mega Man X

9. the Turtles titles are great

10. by removing only a couple pieces of plastic you can play Japanese imports

Bonus: Super Mario Kart!

 

There's almost as many titles as for the NES and you can get things like the Super Everdrive, the Super GameBoy & there's a Super Retro Advance adapter for GBA games.

I haven't priced out systems or games in awhile so you might have to see if it's in your budget.

 

Forgot to mention - the SNES is just as reliable as the NES, even more so than the front loaders and you get an Eject button at no extra cost!

Edited by byonddrivn

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While I think getting a NES is a great idea I'm going to go out on a limb and suggest getting a SNES instead. Here's 10 good reasons:

1. 16 bit graphics

 

It's all about the game play.

 

I like the console hardware but I don't like most of the NES games. The NES did a great job of converting golden age arcade games the problem is that there's not enough of them.

 

I would say if you get an NES get the Everdrive cart and load it up with ROMs.

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It's all about the game play.

 

 

I completely agree & I guess, for me, sometimes better graphics can result in better gameplay. Look at the progress in systems, I understand that something like the PS4 can do more than the NES/SNES but the graphics is a big selling point on gameplay too. Sound can help as well, the SNES can output stereo whereas the NES is mono. Controllers are a big plus too for gameplay, I like the SNES ones. I really like the GameCube and Xbox 360 controllers also. Don't get me wrong, the NES was the first system I bought with my own money and I loved it.

 

I'm hoping not to confuse his request for info on the NES, I was just pointing out that I personally thought the SNES was a better system, especially if he's looking to drop cash on a new system to play. it's called Super for a reason. :) There's good arcade ports on it, good 3rd party games and good new versions of classic NES characters. Plus you get the benefit of fighting games like Street Fighter II and Mortal Kombat, driving games like Top Gear and F-Zero, stuff the NES couldn't or didn't do. I also think that while the Super Scope is a beast and I don't like that little box for it but the light gun games are much better. Plus there's so much to choose from with the addition of Japanese carts, and GB all the way up to GBA.

 

I know the OP was asking about quirks with the NES and everyone has done a wonderful job of explaining it to him but I just wonder sometimes if it's worth it to screw around with boiling or replacing 72 pins every so many years or dealing with a top loader with vertical lines that may or may not bother you (but you won't know til you drop $100 on it). I'm currently playing NES games on a RetroN 3 and waiting for my Blinking Light Wins to come so I can pull out my NES.

 

Sadly they never made a SNES versions of Bionic Commando, Blaster Master, or Super Dodge Ball (except Battle Dodge Ball for the Super Famicom), those are some of my NES favorites. I guess maybe I should have said something more like "Get an NES, it's great, but be prepared to go down the rabbit hole cuz you're gonna want a SNES eventually"?

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It's all about the game play.

 

I like the console hardware but I don't like most of the NES games. The NES did a great job of converting golden age arcade games the problem is that there's not enough of them.

 

I would say if you get an NES get the Everdrive cart and load it up with ROMs.

 

Many of the games we played back then I wouldn't touch with a 10 foot pole. They are terrible, but back then you bought them and were stuck with them. There's still easily 40-50 extremely good games on the NES that would take your free time up for quite awhile.

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Many of the games we played back then I wouldn't touch with a 10 foot pole. They are terrible, but back then you bought them and were stuck with them. There's still easily 40-50 extremely good games on the NES that would take your free time up for quite awhile.

 

Can you link a video or list to this thread of these 40-50 good titles.

 

EDIT: Nevermind I found some quality videos to sift through.

Edited by thadsilverfox

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I love the NES!

here are some price break downs

Console (original model) costs $40-60

common games (average about $5 each)

common high-demand games ($15-30)

uncommon games ($25-50)

rare games ($70-$$$$$$$$$$$$)

 

You can probably save money by buying in lots

Garage sales and thrift shops have kind of dried up.

you might have luck in some flea markets

specialty shops have nice selections but high prices

Craigslist is hit-or-miss

eBay tends to be on the upper end of those price ranges I mentioned...

best if you can deal face-to-face with other gamers at meet-ups, swap-meets, conventions....

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Many of the games we played back then I wouldn't touch with a 10 foot pole. They are terrible, but back then you bought them and were stuck with them. There's still easily 40-50 extremely good games on the NES that would take your free time up for quite awhile.

 

Anyone like Batman? I remember getting that game BITD and it looked really kewl judging by the box. Then I played it and thought it was awful. As you said - then you're stuck with it.

 

Then there was NES Football. I remembered all I had to do was throw a screen pass and I can run 80 yards for a TD every time. Reminiscent of bunting for home runs in Atari's RealSports Baseball.

 

Incidentally I'm selling off my NES cart collection since I got an Everdrive. I have a thread in the auctions forum.

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My top 5 NES games:

Battletoads (very challenging!)

Legacy of the Wizard (get lost in a giant dungeon maze)

StarTropics (tropical themed adventure)

Punch-Out!

Dr. Mario (puzzle game similar to Tetris)

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