Few people have heard of it, yet many consider John Blankenbaker's KENBAK-1 to be the first commercial personal computer.

Koss introduced these headphones over 40 years ago, and they remain affordable favorites to this day.

It Took 30 Years, But Now We Can Pause Atari 2600 Games

Now that doesn't look so bad... does it, Atari?
In the pre NES days, marathon gaming sessions were tough on a body. No pause button, you see. No way to freeze your game in time while answering your body's unrelenting needs and functions... so to speak. When the Atari 5200 was released as an upgrade to the 2600, one of the major system features was the first ever "pause". This feature was carried over to Atari's next opus; the 7800. I remember being excited since the 7800 also played all of those 2600 classics, but alas... Only newer 7800 games programmed to take advantage of the pause worked. 2600 endurance gluttons still had to save up free lives and run full speed to the bathroom during a gaming session.

I will wait here for Onyx Sr. Sir, yes sir!It may have taken more than 30 years, but now you can add a pause to your 2600! AtariAge offers their fully assembled pause kit for a mere $20. You have to do just a little soldering yourself for final installation, but the reward is that you can pause practically any 2600 game. The screen will go blank, or maybe show video garbage, but your game is in a sort of electronic cryo until you unpause.

The project was developed by Victor Trucco basing it off of an "Onyx Jr.", a Brazillian Atari clone console from the 80's and the only Atari system with a pause button. After some reverse engineering, Trucco found a way to safely pause any Atari game.

You can read about his project on his website, and even build your own from scratch. Or save your nerves for your gaming nights by picking up the pre-built kit from Atari Age (tell 'em that Retro Thing sent ya!). When the asteroid field gets a little too rough, or the alligators get a little too snappy, you and your 2600 can finally take the pause that refreshes.


Atari Age's order page for pre-built pause kit
Victor Trucco's website - build your own!


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