Dreamcast Karaoke Unit
The Dreamcast Karaoke is a karaoke peripheral which was only sold in Japan. It retailed originally for 10,290 yen and came with the unit itself, a microphone and a connecting cable to connect to the Sega Dreamcast.
The karaoke unit sits below the Dreamcast system and links up via the expansion port usually occupied by the Dreamcast Modem but the unit has also an expansion port of its own, allowing the set-up to be expanded even further if needed. The Dreamcast Karaoke interfaces with the Sega Kara disc, and allowed users to choose from a selection of 16,000 songs from the internet, many of them English songs from famous groups such as the Beatles, Nirvana, Oasis etc. Sadly, as the servers have since been taken offline this is no longer an option. I really hope someone finds a cached selection of the songs and is able to restore it to its former glory.
The karaoke service required users to pay for the service, not per song but on a time limit bases. The following packages that were available were as follows.
24 hour use - 800 yen
30 day use - 2,000 yen
Considering the large selection of songs available, this service was not bad at all considering the expense of hosting such a service at the time.
The device itself supports up to two microphones, each with its own volume control, and other than having Dreamcast branding they are basically your average microphones so you can use others if required. Unfortunately, the device is region locked to Japanese consoles and is only compatible with run-of-the-mill AV cables so make sure you have one handy if you want to test out the karaoke unit. Interestingly, the design for the Karaoke unit was also to be implemented in the cancelled zip drive unit, as well as a DVD drive add-on for the Dreamcast. One actual zip drive did go into production and went for a cool $10,000 a couple of years back on Ebay. The Dreamcast Karaoke unit is a unique collector's piece and another sign of what could have been for the Dreamcast.
If you would like to see the unit in action please checkout our unboxing video on YouTube.