Atari STe UK usable in USA?

Troubles with your machine? Just want to speak about the latest improvements? This is the place!

Moderators: Mug UK, Zorro 2, Greenious, spiny, Moderator Team

Captain Atari
Captain Atari
Posts: 244
Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2011 3:59 pm

Atari STe UK usable in USA?

Postby rabindranath72 » Fri Sep 20, 2013 8:51 am

Hi all,
can a UK Atari STe be used in the USA? Are there problems for the PSU and for video refresh frequency?


Posts: 4178
Joined: Tue Jan 18, 2011 12:31 am
Location: Cheltenham, UK

Re: Atari STe UK usable in USA?

Postby Dal » Fri Sep 20, 2013 11:25 am

You have two issues to contend with.

Firstly, the power supply. A UK STE PSU is designed only to accept 220~240v so you either need to replace it with a USA 110v PSU or use a converter between your mains outlet and the machine.

Secondly, the colour video output will be PAL. You could run it into a standard VGA monitor, but you will be confined to hi res mono only. I don't know how easy/feasible it is to convert a PAL system to NTSC. You may be best trying to source a UK PAL analogue TV - you could get a PAL flat screen TV with a composite video in socket which runs on 12v DC. Something like this:

The power supply may well be auto switching (will work at 110-240v). If not, you should be able to source one easily through a local electronics store.

Out of interest, is there a reason for not using an NTSC STE? I wonder if it's a games compatibility issue or something?
Mega"SST" 12, MegaSTE, STE: Desktopper case, IDE interface, UltraSatan (8GB + 512Mb) + HXC floppy emulator. Plus some STE's/STFM's

User avatar
Fuji Shaped Bastard
Fuji Shaped Bastard
Posts: 2301
Joined: Tue Dec 12, 2006 2:32 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Atari STe UK usable in USA?

Postby bullis1 » Fri Sep 20, 2013 11:32 am

You will likely have to swap the PSU but that's not very difficult. I don't think the PSU is universal.

If you are using the machine with a monitor (from USA region) you will have no issues with screen refresh.

If you are using it with a TV then you will have to use a small AUTO program to switch to 60hz, or replace the TOS with a North American one. It will still be outputting PAL colour though via it's modulator.

EDIT: I've been beaten on a couple points while I was typing, but I did elaborate on the screen issue (or lack thereof).
Member of the Atari Legend team

Fuji Shaped Bastard
Fuji Shaped Bastard
Posts: 2978
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2012 4:42 pm

Re: Atari STe UK usable in USA?

Postby AtariZoll » Fri Sep 20, 2013 12:11 pm

110>220V transformer of some 50-60W should be cheap and easy to get solution for power.
Some RGB monitor or TV with such input is of course best solution - sharpest and cleanest pic. But in last years almost nobody manufactures such devices, capable to work with 50-60 Hz video. I saw even LCD monitor, still available, which has RGB input for old computers like Atari or Amiga (+many others). For less money you can get some older Commodore or Atari CRT monitor.
So, the answer is yes, of course. But it needs some effort, money and knowledge.
Famous Schrodinger's cat hypothetical experiment says that cat is dead or alive until we open box and see condition of poor animal, which deserved better logic. Cat is always in some certain state - regardless from is observer able or not to see what the state is.

User avatar
Ultimate Atarian
Ultimate Atarian
Posts: 12766
Joined: Sat May 03, 2008 2:09 pm
Location: Far East

Re: Atari STe UK usable in USA?

Postby wongck » Fri Sep 20, 2013 1:29 pm

My Falcon is from US and I am using a step-down transformer for my home 240V.
So there should be no issues going the other way round using a step-up transformer.

My old 29" TV (now broken) had is a multi-system TV, so it can take PAL from the local station and NTSC from the Falcon.
I am sure there are LCD TV that are also multi-system as well.

I also remember my old VHS (broken also) that can play NTSC - called NTSC playback on PAL TV... sure nice system that allows playing of Japanese video tapes. :mrgreen: :wink: :wink: :D
My Stuff: FB/Falcon CT63 CTPCI ATI RTL8139 USB 512MB 30GB HDD CF HxC_SD/ TT030 68882 4+32MB 520MB Nova/ 520STFM 4MB Tos206 SCSI
Shared SCSI Bus:ScsiLink ethernet, 9GB HDD,SD-reader @
My Atari stuff for sale - click here for list

User avatar
Obsessive compulsive Atari behavior
Obsessive compulsive Atari behavior
Posts: 142
Joined: Sat May 17, 2008 8:10 pm
Location: Cincinnati, OH

Re: Atari STe UK usable in USA?

Postby thgill » Fri Sep 20, 2013 3:04 pm

Yep, will need to replace the PSU.

You could buy a US spec PSU from Best Electronics, but, if they have them in stock, you are looking at $75 plus shipping (or more). They also offer a heavy duty one, but their website says to call them. Most likely out of stock.


You can replace the psu with something like the Pico-PSU. I have done several of them and they work great. Getting ready to install one in another UK STe I am receiving next week.

More info and pics in this thread:


Like retro computers, game consoles and other obsolete junk? Check out Todd's Nerd Cave on YouTube

Social Media


Return to “Hardware”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests