$59 RetroEngine Sigma Retro Game Console is Based on Orange Pi Lite Board (Crowdfunding)

2016 has been the year of retrogaming comeback with products like PocketCHIP, Nintendo NES Classic, GPD Win and quite a few other projects. There will soon be a new option with RetroEngine Sigma, an inexpensive Linux based retro-gaming console based on Allwinner H3 processor.

retroengine-sigmaRetroEngine Sigma fanless game console hardware specifications:

  • SoC – Allwinner H3 quad core Cortex A7 @ 1.2 GHz with an ARM Mali-400MP2 GPU up to 600 MHz
  • System Memory – 512 MB DDR3
  • Storage – 16 or 32GB micro SD card
  • Video & Audio Output – HDMI port
  • Connectivity – 802.11 b/g/n WiFi
  • USB – 2x USB 2.0 host ports, 1x micro USB OTG port
  • Misc – Programmable status LED, 2 user configurable buttons P1 & P2
  • Power Supply – 5V/2A via power barrel
  • Dimensions – 110 x 85 x 33.5 mm

The specifications look similar, so I went to my little list of Allwinner H3 boards, found the specs matches closely Orange Pi Lite board, and after checking the video and more picture, the ports also happen to be exactly in the same place… So it’s pretty sure the console is based on Shenzhen Xunlong’s Orange Pi Lite board, which is cool since there’s a good community support.

retrogame-sigma-armbianRetroGame developers leveraged that, and the console supports Atari 2600/7800, Sega Genesis, Nintendo NES / 64, Amstrad, Sega, and many more, and can be used as a mini computer and a media player with Kodi. It seems to have the same features as RetrOrangePi firmware based on Armbian plus Kodi and various game emulator.

The mini console’s Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign has been very successfully so far as they’ve raised closed to $250,000 from over 3,000 backers. All early bird rewards are gone, but you can still pledge $59 for the “Speedy Backer” reward including a mini console with a 16GB micro SD card pre-loaded with the firmware, a power adapter, a dual stick analog controller, a micro USB card reader, and a Xmas voucher. The 32GB micro SD Deluxe version goes for $89, and adds a Bluetooth adapter, a Bluetooth game controller, and a HDMI cable. Shipping adds $7 to the US, and $15 to the rest of the world. Delivery is scheduled for April to June 2017, but you’ll first receive a Christmas Gift voucher.


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18 Replies to “$59 RetroEngine Sigma Retro Game Console is Based on Orange Pi Lite Board (Crowdfunding)”

  1. I tried retrorangpi om my OPI-one and it’s terrible slow. I can’t even play Mario Kart from the snes on a decent speed. My sd-card is a samsung evo so this one shouldn’t be the problem.

    1. Bruh I got an original Super Nintendo (SNS-001) with an authentic copy of Mario Kart for $45. Sometimes original hardware is cheaper and ALWAYS better.

  2. While it is good to see sbc being used I am left wondering that apart from a GPIO what does this bring that could not of been added to a £30 or less, Android H3 TV box running Android 4.4 .

  3. @theguyuk
    You’d need to hack the TV box for it to run the same software. Not to difficult for people reading this blog, but for most people having something plug and play is easier. They also include the game controller(s) and a 16 or 32 GB micro SD card.

    The rest in the price is Indiegogo fee, and profit! The case has probably been custom designed with some molding cost to be involved, so I’m not sure how much profit there is actually.

  4. They wil sell it with 15 Games already installed on it, but I don´t care if the have really the licence of this 15 Game-Rom´s. And where we should get some other Game-Roms?
    @cnxsoft: 4 me it would be interesting to get a “diys from you with the cheap Orange Pi Lite board”

  5. cnxsoft :
    You’d need to hack the TV box for it to run the same software.

    If H3 TV boxes have an SD card slot (like Beelink X2 for example) then there’s nothing to hack. Download RetrOrangePi, burn it to SD card, insert card, power on, call Armbian’s nand-sata-install (wipes out Android on eMMC), done. Next boot from eMMC with same features as this overpriced RetroEngine Sigma thingie but faster (eMMC, more DRAM) and less expensive. But interesting business model though.

  6. mm. sorry, but I think this is ****shit.

    in indigogo they say that
    “The Sigma is only available via this Indiegogo campaign. We have no plans to sell this model at retail. Get yours while supply lasts!”

    Time will see, but I think that the will sell this and then clean her hands. 
    and a lot of users spend his money, and I don’t know how this would run.

    retropie, lakka takes a lot of work, kodi the same, and allwinner is just not good words in this and not much ports doit I think…

    users and people will come to forums and irc saying how to do this, how to do the other…, and if in indigoo website they post names as armbian, retro and kodi, I think that in 2017 igor forums will have a lot of kodi and retrogaming user questions than server and headless…. and people needing modules and kernel patches for that joystick and the other…

  7. I what if is more worse….

    people making and posting images in armbian forum with armbian with retro emulators and roms or rom downladers… and kodi with external plugins, making usermoderation for not violating laws…
    this shit of selling retroconsoles is mad I think.

  8. @Pere
    If you now buy an Orange Pi Lite for $12, a quality 16 GB SD card for an additional $8 (or behave smarter and buy one Orange Pi PC Plus with 8 GB pretty fast eMMC and twice the DRAM), a PSU and an USB game controller you’ve all you get from this Indiegogo campaign (minus plastic enclosure).

    Just visit the RetrOrangePi link above in the article. Everything’s already there. But I assume they want to ship in March 2017 since they wait for community (or better say @jernej) finishing/fixing HDMI EDID support and RetrOrangePi folks setting up a repo. Currently only a bunch of different HDMI resolutions are supported with H3 legacy kernel so a lot of backers would start whining when this Sigma thingie doesn’t negotiate a correct display with their TV and those guys could get in trouble violating GPL 🙂

    Details here and there: https://github.com/jernejsk/linux/commit/a590d188a3e09d739f34ff87a51683293e3dcece and http://orange314.com/RetrOrangePi

  9. Well I went on YouTube looking for video of RetroPi on Android but the video I first tried was fake, turned out to be a kid using a Pi2.

    However by shear chance in the side video links, was a 15 minute video of RetroArch on a Amlogic s912, with frame rates and cpu temp shown.

    So if CNX does not mind I will add to the discussion with the video link https://youtu.be/hNyRttrLgis

    Now I still have a Remix mini OS box but no proper game controllers, but wonder how RetroArch would work on one of these? To not bothered to spend time testing myself, but thought I would put it out there.

  10. Yesterday I tested Lakka on the OPI-one and I have to say it works pretty good. Even N64 games (zelda OOT) are playabel.

  11. Seems sales of this are boosted by lack of Nintendo Mini Nes Classic stock. Project 2854% funded!

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