Some mysteries have begun unraveling a bit with a somewhat surprising reveal from the folks over at Digital Foundry who broke down their SNES Classic to take a look at the hardware inside.
The hardware in this miniature Super Nintendo is the same motherboard, processor, GPU, memory and more. In fact, this is so much the same hardware, that the corners which were carved to fit in the NES Classic shell, are the same, despite not being needed at all in SNES Classic, likely in an attempt to minimize any changes in the production line. Here's a look at the chipset from Twitter user Chiimaero
This helps explain why Nintendo halted the production of the NES Classic earlier this year, as literally every one of those boards assembled using off the shelf parts could instead be used for a SNES Mini this year. It also explains why they'll be able to easily transition from SNES Classics to NES Classics production, as they've said they are going to be bringing the NES Classic back next year.
There is another impact to this as well. Last year, hackers were able to modify the NES Classic to work with games not preloaded on the system. Because it's using the same hardware, work on replicating that functionality has been begun on that quickly. The ability to dump the system's kernel (the central part of the operating system) was available from last year's NES Classic tool, and users have shared that Nintendo was expecting this and left a message hidden inside a folder called "nineties" that had the following text:
Enjoy this Mini, Disconnect from the present, and Go back to the nineties.The SNES Classic released today for $79.99 MSRP, and Nintendo has promised that there will be more stock of it than there were of last year's NES Classic. If you want to help support TechRaptor, you can buy through these links and we'll get a portion of all sales (Note: some may be out of stock): Amazon, Bestbuy, GameStop, Toys R US. Additionally, The Amazon Treasure Truck in LA has it available today.