Many of the benefits of NTSC consoles can be somewhat negated by the need to use elaborate voltage inverters/step downs. In certain cases, there's a quick & easy way around that
Of the consoles who's PSU is internal, you can normally swap out the PSU if your lucky enough to have a broken/donor console at hand. Below shows whats involved to swap out a Dreamcast PSU as it's quite a commonly imported console.
Not every console is as easy, & some PSU's have different revisions etc so always be sure before you do this, that it's ok to do so.
It should be noted that both these consoles are PAL, I just decided to document this separately, while I'm working on them for something else. The premise is exactly the same on an import console
PAL & NTSC
Here you can see the PSU along the left hand side of both consoles
A closer look, there are two phillips screws holding it down (one is obscured), a two pin block connector towards the back, & a 6 pin connector which provides the power to the motherboard.
Here you can see the two phillips screws undone & ready to come out, also the two pin connector is now unclipped
This is the 6 pin connector. The psu just pushes down onto it, & spring tension holds it in place.
Gently pry upwards with something blunt. Do this when the screws have been removed so you won't flex the PSU
Once undone, the PSU lifts out & there you have it. Swap the donor in & reassemble in reverse
Not all consoles are like this, some have external psu's, some have very different internal ones. But the Dreamcast is one of the ones thats very easy to do, & you don't need the added expense of a stepdown
Thanks for this. I'm a 60hz only user and always go with American systems with PAL PSU when a 50/60hz mod can't be done on a PAL system.
I've a PAL Dreamcast here though and planned on just flashing the bios with dreamshell and set it to output NTSC. Would that work or do I need a real NTSC dreamcast?
Not too sure tbh, are you talking about PAL50/60 settings on the region free bios? I know there's a seperate mod to force PAL60 on PAL consoles, not sure how that would interact with the new bios though. Perhaps send mmmonkey an email? - http://mmmonkey.co.uk/console/sega/dc-dev-bios.htm
In the region change mod you wire up some points and boot a special version of dreamshell that lets you permanently change the region. Here is a link - http://www.mmmonkey.co.uk/console/sega/dc-region.htm
I'll be doing this mod myself soon so will be able to confirm. If it doesn't give 60hz output I'll get an American Dreamcast and use your mod to swap the PSUs around
Yeah Ive done that mod myself here - http://www.boards.ie/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=2056084617
Afaik, the output remains at 50Hz, with 60Hz games giving you the option of changing to 60Hz, I could be wrong though its a while since I've done it
Actually just looking at when I did this mod myself, the center options are titled 'Broadcast'...& allow you to choose between three different PAL outputs & an NTSC one. I wonder if the NTSC is what your wondering about & is 60Hz?
That's similar to another pic I saw online and made me jump to the conclusion, as you say, that if broadcast set it to NTSC it will output at 60Hz... fingers crossed as I already bought the PAL dreamcast