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Thread: Rarest Turbo Express ever? Exciting find...

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    Default Rarest Turbo Express ever? Exciting find...

    Hi, I'm new to this Forum.
    I mainly collect original movie props but I also used to be a big computer and videogame geek back in the 80s and 90s. A couple of weeks ago I stumbled over some original screen used props from the movie "Enemy of the state" starring Will Smith from 1998. One of the items was a "NEC Video Device". I instantly realized that this must be one of the Turbo Express Devices they used in that movie. Since I owned a Turbo Express back in the days I always rembered that they used this in the movie as a prop. When I did some more research on this I realized that the Turbo Express offered showed some slight differences to the ones publicly sold back then: The "Turbo Express"-Logo was missing on the front and instead it shows a different Logo (either a stylized whale or bird) and on the backside the typical Silver sticker was missing and in place there is a huge NEC Logo and again this whale type logo.

    As a movieprop collector you always look for so called "screenmatched" props which basically means that you can clearly identify a prop in a certain scene, for example with some scratches or other unique imperfections teh props shows. Screenmatched props are very rare and desirable. So I was more than thrilled when I grabbed some screenshots and found out that this is the exact Turbo Express you can see in all the close-up scenes in the movie! As you can tell fom the photos the logo on the front and the back and the little black spots and the sticker on the back are a 100% match which means that this is the exact Turbo Express used by Will Smith and Jason Lee. It even came with the PCMCIA card that stored the data in the movie.

    So I got very interested and did some more research and it even got more interesting. The story goes like this: NEC made a deal with the Enemy of the state production to have their Logo featured in the movie. Since the Turbo Express plays a very important role in the movie they wanted their Logo attached to it. But since the Turbo Express was released and the movie was made some years had passed, NEC had stopped production for the Turbo Express and NEC in the meanwhile had changed their official Logo and added this new whale/bird shape. So when the movies Producers came along and wanted to use the Turbo Express NEC made 2 Turbo Express devices with that new Logo to be used on set by the actors. Additionally two more non-functional stunt Turbo-Express were made of hard rubber for the actors to run around with them and their stuntmen.

    So it turns out this is not only the exact Turbo Express seen on screen, it's also one of only two ever made. So needless to say I bought it It still works perfectly except for the sound which is very soft.

    Hope you find this as exciting as I did :-)

    Ryan

    By the way: if anybody is interested in one of the stunt-devices, let me know.
    EDIT:Some typos

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    Last edited by Bitbuster; 02-11-2014 at 04:21 AM.

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    Some more screenshots.
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    If it's on the level, that's an amazing find. Is it rude to ask how much you paid for this item?

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    Looks pretty cool! Thanks for sharing the find!

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    That right there is awesome. Being a huge Turbob fan, it's really cool too see it in pictures outside of the movie.

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    I like how the turbochip/hucard masquerades as a PCMCIA card, funny stuff.

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    Actually, I think it's the other way around... It really is a PCMCIA card, it just happens to fit in the TE slot... They wouldn't have cared if it fit 'properly', just had to sit there...

    I'm kind of surprised I missed that, actually... I saw the rubber one they originally sold, but I wanted the hero prop (being a prop collector _and_ handheld game collector _AND_ fan of Turbo Express... That one had it all! ). Just not a site I visit that frequently apparently. I love finding props made from handheld games...

    Does the system actually work, or is it just a shell?

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    Not sure what this is actually worth (anybody?) but I felt I got it at a bargain. I think the seller didn't really know what he had there.

    And yes, the card is an actual PCMCIA card which surprisingly fits perfect into the slot.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rik1138 View Post
    Actually, I think it's the other way around... It really is a PCMCIA card, it just happens to fit in the TE slot... They wouldn't have cared if it fit 'properly', just had to sit there...

    I'm kind of surprised I missed that, actually... I saw the rubber one they originally sold, but I wanted the hero prop (being a prop collector _and_ handheld game collector _AND_ fan of Turbo Express... That one had it all! ). Just not a site I visit that frequently apparently. I love finding props made from handheld games...

    Does the system actually work, or is it just a shell?
    Hey Rik, don't we know each other from the MPF? ;-)

    The System actually works. The screen is crisp and I couldn't find any dead pixels. But unfortunately the sound is not working.
    So I'm thinking about recapping it. Not sure though because I don't plan on actaully playing with it.

    Through this I got infected with retrogaming again and just got myself an Archos Gamepad 2 with all the Emulators

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bitbuster View Post
    Hey Rik, don't we know each other from the MPF? ;-)

    The System actually works. The screen is crisp and I couldn't find any dead pixels. But unfortunately the sound is not working.
    So I'm thinking about recapping it. Not sure though because I don't plan on actaully playing with it.

    Through this I got infected with retrogaming again and just got myself an Archos Gamepad 2 with all the Emulators
    I would do the caps just as a precautionary thing to be honest, you wouldn't want them to age and pop and then wreck the internals on something like this. Being playable is a cool bonus though!

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    Good point, I don't want it to ruin itself. Just have to find out which caps to replace with what but I thik there are some tutorials online.

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    This is an awesome find. I actually posted about the appearance of the Turbo Express in that movie in a topic on this board about movie appearances of game consoles.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bitbuster View Post
    And yes, the card is an actual PCMCIA card which surprisingly fits perfect into the slot.
    Really? Because in this pic



    it sure looks like they just slapped a sticker on a turbochip. Admittedly the other pics, where it's not actually in the unit, do look like an actual PCMCIA card. Oh well. Still funny either way

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    Yes it's definitely a PCMCIA card. A bit thicker than the HU-Cards but still fits into the slot surprisingly.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bitbuster View Post
    Good point, I don't want it to ruin itself. Just have to find out which caps to replace with what but I thik there are some tutorials online.
    First off, that is an AMAZING find! I remember watching Enemy of the State in the theater and feeling somewhat vindicated as I grew up playing on the Turbo Express. You very well might have the rarest Turbo Express out there!

    Secondly, definitely the audio caps that are dead. Mine has the same issue, sadly :/. I know that eStarland fixes those, but I'm not certain I'd entrust a piece like that to just anyone. I mean, they fixed my Game Gear's video caps problem with little headache, but I don't even trust them with MY Turbo Express, let alone a piece of movie history. Probably not a bad idea to get them fixed at some point, but might be best to tackle it yourself. Not sure how prop collecting works and if that would hurt the value or not.

    So cool that it actually works!
    Dig it old-school?
    Visit http://www.retronick.com
    or follow me on twitter: @Retron8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bitbuster View Post
    So I got very interested and did some more research and it even got more interesting. The story goes like this: NEC made a deal with the Enemy of the state production to have their Logo featured in the movie. Since the Turbo Express plays a very important role in the movie they wanted their Logo attached to it. But since the Turbo Express was released and the movie was made some years had passed, NEC had stopped production for the Turbo Express and NEC in the meanwhile had changed their official Logo and added this new whale/bird shape. So when the movies Producers came along and wanted to use the Turbo Express NEC made 2 Turbo Express devices with that new Logo to be used on set by the actors. Additionally two more non-functional stunt Turbo-Express were made of hard rubber for the actors to run around with them and their stuntmen.
    It's nice to know the truth of that at last. I had the impression that someone involved in the production was a really big Turbo fan and offered it up from his personal collection, which really makes so much less sense in light of what you've written.

    I suspect the overwhelming majority of people who saw the film had no idea that NEC was involved, much less that it was a Turbo Express.
    Last edited by Jorpho; 02-18-2014 at 08:35 AM.
    "There is much pleasure to be gained from useless knowledge." --Bertrand Russel (attributed)

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    Pretty cool find. Congrats!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Retronick View Post
    Not sure how prop collecting works and if that would hurt the value or not.
    That's the only thing I've thought of with this, usually I would say to repair it to prevent any further damage but I'm not sure if altering it would affect the value or not. It's like whether or not to refinish an antique table.

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    Since replacing the capacitors is just a necessary precaution to prevent it from any further damage and it's not even visible it won't affect the value as a prop.
    But I will keep the original ones just in case.
    I already have all the replacement SMD-caps here so I'm ready for a 1:1 swap. I don't think it will be a problem since I'm pretty good with the Soldering Iron and have some experience with SMD.
    Still...Wish me luck

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