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Thread: Very stupid Atari 5200 question

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    Default Very stupid Atari 5200 question

    I picked up an Atari 5200 with no hookups today. I cant seem to figure out where the power adapter plugs in. Any help?

    Chris

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    Pretzel (Level 4)
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    I can help if it's the 4 controller version like mine. Looking at it from the rear, it will be the last hole on the left. Just to the right of it will be the channel 3/4 selector.

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    Pac-Man (Level 10) NoahsMyBro's Avatar
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    4-port models, unless they've been modified by folks like some of us on these boards, have no power input on the system.

    Rather, the AC Adapter plugs in to the non-standard RF switchbox, and the power is sent from the switchbox to the console along the RF cable.

    See here:
    http://www.atarihq.com/5200/5200faq/04_08.html
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    Quote Originally Posted by NoahsMyBro
    4-port models, unless they've been modified by folks like some of us on these boards, have no power input on the system.

    Rather, the AC Adapter plugs in to the non-standard RF switchbox, and the power is sent from the switchbox to the console along the RF cable.

    See here:
    http://www.atarihq.com/5200/5200faq/04_08.html
    Are these switchboxes easy to come by or a pain in the ass?

    Chris

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    Pain in the ass. Best bet is ebay, or someone from here on the boards. They sell for about $25 new, but a good used one would only be about half that.
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    You can also make a switchbox.

    You can get all the parts from Radio Shack for about $10.

    There's a guide for making one. Google it.

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    That is the wierdest thing I've ever read about a console's power supply.

    Now to get this right...there's extra pins or something on the console's RF-out?

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    Nothing extra. The AC Adapter plugs in to a jack on the auto-RF switchbox. The standard, normal, ordinary RCA-plug signal cable runs from the switchbox to the 5200 itself, where it's soldered to the motherboard. The voltage travels along that wire into the console.

    Atari Age has the system's schematics if you're fluent in that sort of thing.
    http://www.atariage.com/5200/archive...?SystemID=5200

    For other, tangentially related info, you can look at various pics of the insides of one of my 5200s here, and follow most of the sequence of events of my bringing a dead, no-voltage, model back to life, here.
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    Quote Originally Posted by "Jibbajaba
    Are these switchboxes easy to come by or a pain in the ass?
    Here's a site selling them for $8.00
    http://www.vintagefunworld.com/items.asp?ID=3

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    Strawberry (Level 2) dendawg's Avatar
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    Oops..double posted :/

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    The RCA-Studio II used the same screwy setup. Who ever thought this was a god idea?

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    I think it's an excellent idea that just never really took off. The only problem with the arrangement is the difficulty of finding the non-standard switchboxes. IF the idea had been successful and widely implemented, than the non-standard switchboxes would have been the standard, and would be much easier to acquire.

    I like the idea of having one fewer cable running from the console to wherever. There's most likely already a power outlet behind or near the TV, so that's one fewer cable you see.

    The 5200 was great for that sort of aesthetic. There's also the storage bin for the controllers, and the spool built-in to the base that neatly holds excess video cable.

    Every modern RF switchbox is automatic now, yet you still need to connect the AC Adapter to the console separately. In this age of composite or better connections, the 5200-style connection wouldn't work out, but for it's time I thought it was great.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jonjandran
    You can also make a switchbox.

    You can get all the parts from Radio Shack for about $10.

    There's a guide for making one. Google it.
    BTW, these are fairly simple to make if you have a little expirence with a soildering iron.

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