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Atari Jaguar

The Atari Jaguar and the Atari Lynx were the last two Atari systems to be developed, not by Atari but by outside contractors; Atari did not want any direct involvement in hardware production. In 1990, Flare2 (a company formed by Martin Brennan and John Mathieson with Atari funding) said that not only could they make a console far superior to the Sega Genesis or the Super NES but be cost efficient at the same time. Atari immediately agreed and the system was released in 1993 for $250 under a $500 million manufacturing deal with IBM.

Initially the system sold well, but because of poor games it was eventually considered a failure. The system was quite difficult to program for, as the hardware had a large number of bugs, including one in the memory controller that kept some of its processors from being able to execute code from the system RAM [1] [1]. The final nail in its coffin was the release of both the Sony PlayStation and Sega Saturn. In a last ditch effort, Atari tried to play down these two consoles by claiming the Jaguar was the only 64-bit system, causing some controversy (some contended that the Jaguar's two 64-bit "processors" were essentially nothing more than graphics accelerators; its GPU was only 32-bit and its CPU was a 16-bit 68000). This advertising push was in vain, and production of the Jaguar stopped after Atari purchased JT Storage in a reverse takeover.

Several peripherals were announced, such as a voice modem and VR headset. But the only peripherals released were the Atari Jaguar CD drive and the JagLink, a simple two-console networking device.


CPUs: "Tom" chip (contains 3 video-related processors), 25.59 MHz
  • Graphics processing unit (GPU) - 32-bit RISC architecture, 4K internal cache, provides wide array of graphic effects
  • 64 bit object processor - programmable; can behave as a variety of graphic architectures
  • 64 bit blitter - high speed logic operations, Z-buffering & Gourad shading
  • 64 bit DRAM controller (not a processor)

"Jerry" (the audio processor) - 32 bit DSP at 26.6Mhz

Motorola 68000 at 13.295Mhz

Storage:Cartridge - up to 6MB

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