VRU

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The Voice Recoginition Unit (VRU) is a microphone for the N64 developed by Ambrella. The VRU prototype was built from parts in Akihabara. The VRU is region locked, and known as the VRS (voice recognition system) in Japan. It was released December 12, 1998 in Japan and November 6, 2000 in North America. In North America, the only game supporting the VRU (and includes and requires it, in fact) is Hey You, Pikachu! In Japan, the game Densha de Go! (meaning "Go by train" in english) supports the VRU as well.

The VRU consists of a microphone covered in a yellow foam ball with a 3.5mm audio jack. The microphone can be clipped onto the N64 controller and clamped around the Controller Pak port. Alternatively, the VRU can he hung from the neck. The VRU is calibrated for higher pitched voices. The VRU plugs into controller port #4 and the cable is 6 feet long.

The VRU unit has 4 tripoint screws and contains the following chips:

  • NEC d9930g
  • VRD-NUS
  • VCI-NUS

At this time, only speculation on the purpose of each chip is known.