Sega System 16

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Sega System 16

System 16B PCB
Manufacturer SEGA
Year 1986
CPU 68000
Sound Z80
Resolution 15k
Wiring Standard System 16 Pinout
Predecessor Sega System E
Successor Sega System 24

System 16 hardware was developed and released by Sega in 1986. Following on from System 16A, a second revision, System 16B was released to arcades in 1987 with upgraded hardware. In 2007, Sega released Fantasy Zone: Complete Collection for PlayStation 2, including the newly developed Fantasy Zone II for the theoretical "System 16C" platform. While this was never released to arcades, a bootleg version exists. System 16 is not JAMMA - instead opting to use their own configuration.

Hardware Specification

System 16A

  • Main CPU : MC68000 @ 10 MHz
  • Sound CPU : Z80 @ 4 MHz
  • Sound chip : Yamaha YM2151 @ 4 MHz & NEC uPD7751 ADPCM Decoder
  • Video resolution : 320 x 224 (vertical)
  • Colours : 4096
  • Board composition : CPU board + Video board
  • Hardware Features : 128 Sprites on screen at one time, 2 tile layers, 1 text layer, 1 sprite layer with hardware sprite zooming, translucent shadows

System 16B

Differences from System 16A:

  • Sound CPU : Z80 @ 5 MHz
  • Sound chip : YM2151 @ 4 MHz & Nec uPD7759 @ 640 kHz
  • Board composition : Mother board + Rom board (see picture above)
  • Hardware Features : Sprite Scaling

System 16C

The theoretical System 16C has additional work RAM (256KB) and sprite RAM (8KB).


The pinout for System 16 can be viewed here.

Game List

Title Model Notes
Action Fighter A
Ace Attacker B
Alex Kidd : The Lost Stars A
Alien Syndrome B
Altered Beast / Jyuohki B
Aurail B
Bay Route B
Body Slam / Dump Matsumoto A
Bullet B
Charon B
Cotton B
Dunk Shot B
Dynamite Dux B
E-Swat B
Excite League B
Fantasy Zone A
Flash Point B
Golden Axe B
Heavy Weight Champ B
M.V.P. B
Passing Shot B
Riot City B
Ryu Kyu B
Shinobi A&B
Sonic Boom B
Sukeban Jansi Ryuko A&B
Super League B
Tetris A&B
Time Scanner A&B
Toryumon B
Tough Turf B
Wonder Boy III : Monster Lair A&B
Wrestle War B

Common Faults

Suicide Battery

System 16 PCBs have a battery onboard that is used to help store the encryption keys required for decrypting the game data. When this battery dies, the encryption keys are lost and the game will either lose audio or no longer function, depending on the version. A guide to fix a suicided System 16 board can be found here - The Dead Battery Society. Desuicided boards can be identified by observing the CPU's - a suicide capable PCB will have a CPU encased in a black box, while a desuicided PCB will have a plain CPU.

External Links