Nintendo Game Boy Advance

Debuting in the United States next week, Nintendo's latest hand-held game machine is several dozen times more powerful than its predecessor, Game Boy Color. The device works with more than 450 Game Boy and Game Boy Color cartridges, plus plays its own library of more advanced games. Weighing less than 5 ounces, the 3.2-by-5.7-inch device features a screen that is 50% larger than Game Boy Color's and can display more than 500 times the number of colors.


With a resolution of 240 pixels by 160 pixels, the liquid-crystal screen can display more than 32,700 colors at once. It's a reflective active-matrix screen, which means it's brighter and crisper.


The system's internal audio equipment includes stereo and Dolby Surround capabilities. Users can listen to the sound effects through a headphone jack or the unit's built-in speaker.


Two AA batteries supply power for an average of 15 hours of play time.

Link cable port

Connects to other Nintendo systems for interactive play.

Central processing unit

The CPU contains two chips: a 32-bit processor specially designed for the Game Boy Advance as well as the 8-bit Z80 processor found in the Game Boy Color, which enables it to play older games. Memory in the chip allows the device to run routine programs, which speeds up execution.


In addition to its directional controls, the system includes two shoulder buttons in the upper right- and left-hand corners. Applications for such buttons vary by game.

Game Boy Specs

Game Boy Advance

Processor: 32-bit ARM with embedded memory

Screen resolution: 240 by 160 pixels

Screen size: 2.4 inches by 1.6 inches

Possible colors: 32,768

Simultaneous colors: 32,768 (in bitmap mode)

Size: 3.2 inches by 5.7 inches by 1 inch

Weight: 4.9 ounces

Battery life: 15 hours

Game Boy Color

CPU: 8-bit Z80

Screen resolution: 160 by 140 pixels

Screen size: 1.6 inches by 1.6 inches

Possible colors: 32,000

Simultaneous colors: 56

Size: 5.2 inches by 3 inches by 1.1 inches

Weight: 4.9 ounces

Battery life: 10 hours


Source materials by KATHLEEN BRADY / Los Angeles Times

Researched by CHRISTINE FREY/For The Times

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