Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Mysteries Galore! - dk'tronics

While rummaging through my things, looking for items to sell on eBay, I came across another retro gaming item which I cannot identify myself. This one I did not acquire knowingly and in fact came with a boxed Playstation, with all the gubbins, which I bought at a carboot sale some time ago for a mere £2.

The first thing I noticed was the two controller ports used on many different consoles and home computers including the Sega Mega Drive and the Atari 2600. As it had come with the Playstation I thought, albeit for about five seconds, that it may be a controller adaptor for the Playstation, allowing other controllers to be used on it. Of course, the slot on the top would not fit the the Playstation parallel port, quickly ruling out that possibility. I tried sizing it up against my Mega Drive cartridge slot, the cartridges themselves and the extension port used for the Mega CD, with no luck whatsoever.

Next I tried some internet research using the only thing that may identify it, the text "dK'Tronics", which turns out to be a hardware and software company for systems including the ZX Spectrum, MSX, Commodore 64 and more; a company that went bust in 1993.

After a little more poking around on google and the like, I came across an Amstrad CPC wiki website with a page devoted to dK'Tronics, with pages describing the various products they produced for the system. This is where I found that my gizmo is one part of the ZX Spectrum light pen, used for drawing and animation, as far as I can make out. This website has further information such as PDFs of manuals, original pricing, magazine references and more.

The complete package, however I'm missing the most important part, the pen.

I don't have a ZX Spectrum, and don't intend to get one in the future, so this item is of little use to me. As it's only one part of a package, it doesn't seem to be worth all that much. If anyone is interested in it, just let me know, otherwise I'm going to have a crack at selling it via eBay.

So there you have it, I hope you've learnt something today, I know I have.


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