MSX Turbo R
This page was last modified 12:42, 13 May 2021 by Mars2000you. Based on work by Gdx and NYYRIKKI and others.
MSX Turbo R logo



The MSX Turbo R is the last generation of MSX computers that was put to market by a household electronic brand. Only Panasonic was brave enough to put faith in the standard once again, by releasing two different models: the Panasonic FS-A1ST and the Panasonic FS-A1GT. MSX Turbo R computers were produced until 1994.

According to Kay Nishi, the R on the MSX Turbo R stands for RISC (Reduced instruction set computing).


There is not a lot of software specific for the MSX Turbo R, although a lot of MSX games can run smoother and/or faster on an MSX turbo R. As with the MSX2+, some software uses the optional scroll features or higher screens.

Some software that takes advantage of the MSX Turbo R:

  • 2021 Snooky
  • Daisenryaku II - Campaign Version
  • Fray - In Magical Adventure
  • Illusion City
  • Moonlight Saga
  • Multi-Plex
  • PaRaDream
  • Seed of Dragon

Also see the list on Generation MSX.

Links to MSX Turbo R software can be found on this page: MSX Turbo R Software.


MSX Turbo R computers were only produced by Panasonic and Takaoka in Japan.


Originally Yamaha and ASCII announced the Yamaha V9978 Video Display Processor in 1990, the video chip for the MSX3. It was a very capable video IC, featuring two different sets of video modes. In bitmap modes it was capable of up to 768×240 resolution (up to 768×480 in interlace mode), up to 32768 colors, superimposing, hardware scrolling, and even a hardware cursor for Windows-like OSes. However the most impressive feature with these modes was the use of high-speed hardware bit block data mover. The MSX2 video IC was also equipped with a hardware bit mover, but the new one was going to be 20 times faster.

In pattern mode, it was capable of Super Nintendo class features. Multi layers, 16k patterns, several palettes, 128 sprites, a maximum of 16 sprites per scanline. So basically a SNES but with no mode7.

However, the project was cancelled. Due to a shifting market with a growing interest in game consoles and powerful PCs, companies were not enthusiastic about creating new MSX machines. The biggest software supporters of MSX moved to Nintendo and other computers and game machines. Sony chose to make their own game console.

Ultimately the MSX Turbo R was made, a supercharged MSX2+. Rumor has it that ASCII wasn't able to deliver the new VDP in time for the 1990 release, so the MSX Turbo R was shipped with just the new R800 CPU.

However the Yamaha V9978 specifications and pin-out were featured in some databooks from that time. Later Yamaha and ASCII removed the legacy compatibility features in the V9978 and released it as the Yamaha V9990, which was later used in the Sunrise GFX9000 and Tecnobytes V9990 Powergraph hobby projects.