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USB dev cart Flash Sale (2022/05/17)

Written by cafealpha 9 comments
USB dev cart status (2022/05/29)
 - Back shell #1 : reserved → sent
 - Black shell #2 : reserved → sent
 - White shell : reserved → sent
All carts are sent. Sorry if you arrived too late !



Long time no see ! Thank you for still keeping an eye on my blog 

As the title suggests, I have some USB dev cart available for sale.
Quantity is an amazing three cartridges, but hopefully it should be enough to satisfy the Saturn homebrew developers in the need of such kind of item.

USB dev cart trio

These carts use more or less the same design as original version by antime, which is not bad for a project launched in 2012, i.e. one decade ago.

This batch of cartridges was assembled basically in order to get rid of the small stock of electronic components specific to USB dev cart I was still keeping for several years.

Because of that and also the fact I'm now really low on Action Replay shells (I still have a couple of black shells, but I keep them as a souvenir), this is the very last occasion to get an USB dev cart using Action Replay shell and design similar to the original one from 2012.
If after that I really need to assemble new USB dev cart, this will probably use a 3D-printed shell and all discrete logic would be packed into a CPLD, but to be honest, there's no plan to assemble more USB dev carts in a near or middle-term future.


Because of limited quantity, ordering is done by posting a comment with the color (white or black) of the cartridge you want to purchase. Apart from the color, please don't forget to indicate your email in the appropriate field when writing the comment so that I can contact you back to continue the ordering of the cartridge.

Rule to be selected for the ordering of a cartridge is "first-come first-served" so if all three cartridges are reserved, then you're free to post a comment anyway (it's free, I don't beg for your personal information, and sometimes I even reply to comments) but unfortunately this won't grant you a ticket to order an USB dev cart.
(If you really need one but arrived too late, then please drop me an email and explain me why you need an USB dev cart)

Pricing for one cartridge is as indicated below :
 - USB dev cart (x1) : USD 65
 - Shipping to USA or Europe : JPY 2400 = USD 18
 - Total : USD 83


Shipping method is EMS, whose availability is "random" : if there isn't Buk missile system between your country and Japan, and also if your country is not closed because of a pandemic then you have a chance to be eligible for parcels being delivered by EMS from Japan ... but don't be too optimistic and please check the EMS availability page in order to be sure that delivery can be done.

If EMS is not available, then B-plan is surface mail which takes around three months to arrive and cost more or less the same as EMS. This expensive and slow shipping method sounds like a fraud but it's a thing (by the past I send cartridges via surface mail, and their owners are now happy to play Saturn games), and this will be an unique occasion for your cartridge to enjoy a cruise in the middle of all the oceans of this planet without any tracking information being updated during that period.

Modern shipping is fast, scanned, tracked and always connected like the average salaryman on a business trip, but on the other hand surface mail is like enjoying a digital detox during a 100 days cruise and making ties with other parcel friends in the meanwhile. The more I write about surface mail the more I am jealous about it and want to retire my work of IT, take a backpack and enjoy to be alive



To add more to the monologue about EMS, it has to be noted that pricing will be "revised" from June 1st, as described in this page, or this one in Japanese.
As a consequence, shipping fee to USA for one cartridge will change from 2400 Yens now to 3900 Yens on next month.
Back in 2015, the cost to send one cartridge was 1200 Yens (roughly USD 10), and then EMS discretely "revised" it to 1500 Yens on June 2016, and then the lowest weight range was "revised" from 300 grams to 500 grams and consequently shipping fee jumped to 2000 Yens.
In 10 years, shipping fee to send one cartridge tripled ... I wished the same performance boost for my salary but I miserably failed. Dear EMS, you won the race and congratulate you for that.

Trivia about EMS price chart : did you know that price changes according to the language the price chart page is displayed ?
EMS price chart in Japanese.
Fun fact : total shipping fees to send 5300 Saturn cartridges
is equivalent to the price of a kidney on black market.

EMS price chart in English.
Proudly fixed by myself to adjust language barrier

I suppose that the folks behind EMS have a special excuse to justify that ... maybe because of the cost it required to translate the page, or more probably because pricing is decided by throwing darts on a calendar, then multiplying all numbers being hit until getting a result higher than previous one.

If this guess is right, then maybe the person in charge of deciding the price to put on Japanese page hit 6, 25 and 26 (6*25*26 = 3900) and that the the person in charge of deciding the price to put on English page hit 5, 25 and 28 (5*25*28 = 3500). Each respective darts were quite close but unfortunately both prices don't match



TL;DR
  • There are three USB dev cart for sale
  • USB dev cart is a cartridge for developers on Saturn game console
  • Fast shipping is not available for a majority of European countries
  • Slow shipping is available almost everywhere, but it takes three months to arrive
  • Fast shipping will cost even more from next month.
  • According to Japanese post home page, shipping cost depends of your mother tongue

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