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Channel F
Fairchild • 1976

Launched ByFairchild
Additional BrandsGrandstand
Nordmende
Luxor
Barco
Dumont
Zircon International
Type2nd Generation 8-bit Console
LaunchNovember 1976
Discontinued1983


The Channel F was launched in late 1976 (as the Video Entertainment System) and was the first home console to feature interchangeable programmable ROM Cartridges. It was sold under different names in different countries, including Adman Grandstand (UK), SABA Videoplay (Germany) and Barco Challenger (Italy).

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Popular Channel F games

Hockey
1976

Tennis
1976

Backgammon
1977

Robot War
1977

Torpedo Alley
1977

Space War
1977

Checkers
1978

Video Whizball
1978

Bowling
1978

Alien Invasion
1981

Tetris
2004

Pac-Man
2009

Channel F Emulation

The best emulator we've have found for the Channel F is FreeChaF by David Richardson. It is designed as a Libretro emulator so works well with Retroarch, Lakka and RetroPie. You will need two BIOS files for this emulator, which are:

  • SL31253 or SL90025
  • SL31254
Platform Emulator Notes
Windows / Mac OS / Linux MAME/MESS Good Support. Setname: channelf
Windows / Mac OS / Linux Daphne Emulator for laser disc games such as Dargon's Lair and Space Ace
Mac OS OpenEmu -
Retroarch Various arcade emulators available -
RetroPie Various arcade emulators available -

Emulator Information Last Updated: 15th March 2020

Channel F Tech Specs and further details

Name Fairchild Channel F (launched as Video Entertainment System)
Origin United States
Processor Fairchild F8
Developed by Jerry Lawson
Memory 64 bytes RAM, 2KB Video RAM
Display Output TV via RF Modulator
Display Size (pixels) 128 × 64
Colours 8 Max
Storage Cartridge
Input Joystick-type Controllers
Cost $169 (USA)
Dedicated Publications None that we can tell of

Channel F Resources