Dreamcast Broadband Adapter and Modem Adapter
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The Dreamcast Broadband Adapter (often abbreviated to BBA) and Modem Adapter are accessories that were released for the Sega Dreamcast. A 56 or 33.6K modem is included with the console for use with dial-up Internet access. It could be replaced by a broadband network adapter, released on January 10, 2001, for use in conjunction with broadband Internet access. Either adapter can be used for web browsing and online gaming. Broadband connectivity also led to the unintended consequence of much faster Dreamcast GD-ROM copying, leading to a dramatic increase in game piracy towards the end of the console's North American lifespan.
There are two models of the modem adapter, 670-14140A and 670-14140B. The "A" model can use power from the Dreamcast game console which can be used without the need of power from the telephone line. The "B" model does not use power from the Dreamcast thus being dependent on the power from the telephone line or a modem that runs power through the telephone line.
Custom dial-up server
There are three various ways to create a server between a Dreamcast and PC using the standard modem which allows the Dreamcast to share the PC's network connection.
- PC-DC Server using Windows 95/98.
- PC-DC Server using Windows XP/Vista/7 with virtual machine running a Linux distribution like Ubuntu.
- Dial-up Network by using a LAN Modem (like a Netopia R2020) with a telephone line simulator.
It is a common misconception that the broadband adapter was released with two model numbers (HIT-0400 for US, and HIT-0401 for Japan). This is actually a misunderstanding as all broadband adapters from Japan or the US have the code HIT-0400. The code HIT-0401 actually refers to the Japanese broadband adapters' packaging and documentation, and the code HIT-0400 refers to the adapter hardware itself. The adapters are not region coded, so an American (or Japanese) adapter could be used on a PAL system and vice versa.
There were only two versions released that were approved by Sega.
- HIT-0400: "Broadband Adapter", the more common model, this used a Realtek 8139 chip and supported 10 and 100 Mbit speeds.
- HIT-0300: "LAN Adapter", this version used a Fujitsu MB86967 chip and supported only 10 Mbit speed. This adapter is not compatible with any Dreamcast games and worked only with the included Japanese browser disk.
When introduced, only a few hundred thousand were released, retailing at USD$59.95. Due to the decline of Dial-Up Networking and the more modernized, faster LAN connection, the Broadband Adapter for the Dreamcast has reached very high demand over the pre-packaged Dreamcast Modem. Some games can still be played online via the BBA through private servers, such as Phantasy Star Online and Quake III Arena. Retailers such as eBay sell the accessory alone for around $100 to $200.