If there’s one weakness the Master System had, it’s sound. The system’s PSG sounds are certainly memorable, but the hardware was never quite as capable as that of its 8-bit peers. Sega recognised this and released a Japan-only add-on module for the Mark III, which allowed the system to generate better music with a Yamaha FM sound chip. It was later included in the Japanese Master System, but never made it to Western shores.
However, db Electronics comes to the rescue with its new FM-enabled Power Base Converter. Like the official peripheral, it allows you to play Master System games on a Mega Drive, but unlike that one it includes the FM chip. As the vast majority of FM-enabled games retain the code to use it in their Western releases, this means that you can enjoy improved sound in games such as Double Dragon, Shinobi and After Burner – as you can see in the video above.
While native Master System solutions do exist, they tend to require some soldering or import hardware. The db Electronics models represents the easiest plug-and-play solution yet devised, making it a must for non-technical retro gamers. If you’re interested in getting an FM Power Base Converter when it’s released for sale, head over to db Electronics’ official product page.