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The GameCube (originally code-named "Dolphin" during development; abbreviated as GC) is Nintendo's fourth home video game console, and part of the sixth-generation of video game consoles. It is a cube-shaped, 4-player console with features such as GBA connectivity and unsupported online play.
The GameCube uses a unique storage medium, a proprietary format based on Matsushita's optical-disc technology; the discs are approximately 8 centimeters (3 1/8 inches) in diameter (considerably smaller than a standard CD or DVD), and the discs have a capacity of approximately 1.5 gigabytes. The Nintendo GameCube does not have any DVD-movie support, but a Nintendo GameCube hybrid product containing movie functionality has been released by Matsushita in Japan, named "DVD/GAME Player Q."
Key first-party titles
Some of the more noteworthy Nintendo published titles include:
Major third-party titles
The following are hardware specifications provided by Nintendo of America.
- Name: "Gekko"
- Producer: IBM
- Core Base: PowerPC 750CXe, 43-mm² die (modified PowerPC 750 RISC with 50 new instructions)
- Manufacturing Process: 0.18 micrometre IBM copper-wire technology
- Clock Frequency: 485 MHz
- CPU Capacity: 1125 Dmips (Dhrystone 2.1)
- Internal Data Precision:
- External Bus:
- Internal Cache:
- Name: "Flipper"
- Producer: ArtX/Nintendo (ArtX was acquired by ATi Technologies in 2000 and is now a part of ATi)
- Manufacturing Process: 0.18 micrometre NEC embedded DRAM process
- Clock Frequency: 162 MHz
- Embedded Frame Buffer:
- Approximately 2 megabytes in capacity
- Sustainable latency of 6.2 nanoseconds
- RAM type is 1T-SRAM
- Embedded Texture Cache:
- Approximately 1 megabyte in capacity
- Sustainable latency of 6.2 nanoseconds (6.2ns)
- RAM type is 1T-SRAM
- Texture Read Bandwidth: 10.4 gigabytes/second (at peak)
- Main Memory Bandwidth: 2.6 gigabytes/second (at peak)
- Fill Rate: 648 megapixels/second
- Pixel Depth:
- Image Processing Functions:
- Subpixel anti-aliasing
- 8 hardware lights
- Alpha blending
- Virtual texture design
- Multi-texturing, bump mapping
- Environment mapping
- MIP mapping
- Bilinear filtering
- Trilinear filtering
- Anisotropic filtering
- Real-time hardware texture decompression (S3TC)
- Real-time decompression of display list
- Hardware 3-line deflickering filter
- Producer: Macronix
- Clock Frequency: 81 MHz
- Instruction Memory:
- 8 kilobytes of RAM
- 8 kilobytes of ROM
- Data Memory:
- 8 kilobytes of RAM
- 4 kilobytes of ROM
- Simultaneous Channels: 64 channels
- Encoding: ADPCM
- Sampling Frequency: 48 kHz
Other system specifications
- System Floating-point Arithmetic Capability: 10.5 GFLOPS (at peak) (MPU, Geometry Engine, HW Lighting Total)
- Real-world Polygon Performance: 6 million to 12 million polygons/second (at peak) (assuming actual game conditions with complex models, fully textured, fully lit, etc.)*
- Main RAM:
- Approximately 24 megabytes in capacity
- Sustainable latency of 10 nanoseconds
- RAM type is 1T-SRAM
- Auxiliary RAM:
- Approximately 16 megabytes in capacity
- 81 MHz in speed
- RAM type is DRAM
- Disc Drive:
- Drive type is Constant Angular Velocity (CAV)
- Average access time is 128 milliseconds
- Data transfer speed is between 2 megabytes per second and 3.125 megabytes per second
- Disc Media:
- Controller Ports: 4
- Memory Card Slots: 2
- Analog Audio/Video Outputs: 1
- Digital Video Outputs: 1 *
- High-speed Serial Ports: 2
- High-speed Parallel Ports: 1
- Power Supply: AC Adapter DC12 volts x 3.25 amperes
- Physical Measurements of Entire System: 110 mm (H) x 150 mm (W) x 161 mm (D). [4.3"(H) x 5.9"(W) x 6.3"(D)]
- * The Digital output was removed in a hardware revision in May 2004. Models without the port are DOL-101. 
Official Nintendo accessories
Controllers and removable storage
- Controller (Standard colours include Purple, Black, Orange, Silver or Purple and clear. There are also many limited edition controllers available such as a split Silver and Red, with the Mario "M" logo replacing the regular GameCube logo seen on standard controllers.)
- GameCube controllers consist of a rumble motor, two analog sticks (one labeled as c-stick), a D-Pad, L/R analog trigger buttons (each with a digital click), a digital trigger button (z button, located above the R-Trigger), and 4 face buttons. The face buttons are distinctively shaped so that players can rely on feeling the shape of the button instead of memorizing button locations.
- In 2003, Nintendo released the Wavebird (RF wireless controller), a variation of the Gamecube Controller that uses RF for wireless play. Using two AA batteries, the Wavebird can last up to 80 hours of use on one set of batteries.
- Memory Card (59, 251 or 1019 blocks. A maximum of 127 files can be stored on a memory card)
- GameCube Game Boy Advance Cable (for games that support connectivity between the GameCube and the Game Boy Advance)
- Modem or Broadband adapter (for internet or LAN play)
- Game Boy Player (to play Game Boy games on the television, using either a GameCube controller or a connected Game Boy Advance)
- Component video cable (for progressive scan (480p) support) which requires a GameCube with Digital Video Output. Less than one percent of GameCube owners used 480p, therefore the digital output was eventually removed from the design to reduce the system's manufacturing costs. See System Specifications above and Official Information.)
- Bongos (known in Japan as tarukonga)for use with the music games Donkey Konga, Donkey Konga 2 and Donkey Konga 3, and the Donkey Kong platform title Donkey Kong Jungle Beat.
- Microphone, which plugs into memory card slot, for use with Mario Party 6, Mario Party 7 and Yoot Saito's Odama.
- Mario Dance Pad, for use with a Nintendo version of Dance Dance Revolution, called Dance Dance Revolution with Mario.
The GameCube system also has the unique capability to connect to Nintendo's portable system Game Boy Advance or its SP variant. Such a connection between the two systems allows the transfer of game data. Examples of this functionality include the use of the Game Boy Advance as a controller for the game played. Subsequent information related to game play may be displayed on the Game Boy Advance's color screen for added convenience or to avoid the cluttering of the display on the television screen. This functionality has also been used to unlock "secrets" such as new levels or characters when two games, a Game Boy Advance game and its GameCube equivalent, are connected together. Up to four Game Boy Advance systems can be connected to the GameCube through the GameCube's four controller ports for multiplayer play. A special Nintendo GameCube to Game Boy Advance connection cable is required for each Game Boy Advance system that is to be connected to the GameCube. A fair variety of GameCube games implement this innovative functionality, while Nintendo encourages its continued use.
Games that supported the GameCube - Game Boy Advance Connectivity (Important games are bolded):
- US$199 (November 18, 2001, Launch Price)
- US$99 (2004)
- CAD$299 (November 18, 2001, Launch Price)
- CAD$129 (2004)