Unmasking the Identity of an Unusual Nintendo DS

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The Nintendo DS family comprises a dizzying lineup of handheld game consoles launched over a span of 17 years. The original DS received several updates and special editions, and when the next generation of 3DS arrived, it spawned a whole new collection of spin-offs. But even among all of these machines, there’s one name that even Mario himself would never have heard of: the Nintendo DS ML.

In a recent video, [The Retro Future] says he discovered this bizarre system that sold for around US $ 25 on Chinese shopping site Taobao and bought one so he could take a closer look. Externally, the system looks a bit like the refreshed DS Lite, but it’s significantly larger and the screens look quite dated. This was already a strong clue to his true identity, as was the location of his various buttons and controls.

Note the glaring absence of Nintendo’s name.

But it is only [The Retro Future] opened up the system so he could really confirm what he had in his hands. This was an original Nintendo DS, potentially a new old stock unit that had never been released, which was transplanted into a custom case designed to look like one of the later upgraded models. As to what this salesman meant by calling this chimera the DS ML, anyone can guess, although one of the commentators on the video thought “Maybe Legal” sounded good.

Now, assuming these are really brand new systems that have just been installed in new enclosures, $ 25 is arguably a good deal. As long as you’re not concerned with playing the latest headlines, anyway. But at the same time, it’s a reminder that you get what you pay for when dealing with shady foreign sellers. It’s just as likely, maybe even more, that these were used systems that were upgraded to make a quick buck.

False components are everywhere. In fact, there’s a good chance that most people reading this site have received fake coins over the years, even if they didn’t realize it at the time. When there are night flight companies ready to refurbish an almost 20-year-old Nintendo handheld for $ 25, what are the odds that Bosch actually made that $ 2 temperature sensor you just ordered? on eBay?


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