THEC64 Mini Small Commodore C64 Replica is Now for Sale for $80

THEC64 Mini

Mini versions of retro computers and game consoles are now really a thing. After Nintendo NES Classic / SNES Classic, and Sony PlayStation Classic announcement, all of which are smaller versions of popular older consoles with modern interface like HDMI, Retro Games has now unveiled THEC64 Mini (apparently no typo) that is a small scale replica – half size to be exact – of Commodore C64 computer launched in 1982. THEC64 mini specifications based on Sunxi Wiki and official product page: SoC – Allwinner A20 dual core Cortex-A7 procesor System Memory – 512MB DDR3 Storage – TBD NAND flash Video Output – HDMI 1.4 output at 720p USB – 2x USB 2.0 host ports Misc – Power button Power Supply – 5V/1A via micro USB port Dimensions – 205 x 105 x 35mm You may notice a keyboard on the photo, but that’s just for aesthetics, as the keys are non-functional, and instead you can connect a USB keyboard if …

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Sony PlayStation Classic To Launch for $99.99 in December

Nintendo started to offer smaller replica of their older popular games consoles with Nintendo NES Classic Edition in 2016, followed by Nintendo SNES Classic Edition in 2017. Both devices came with recent interfaces like HDMI, a limited (and fixed) number of games, but being powered by Allwinner R16 SoC they soon became hackable. Both game consoles also became very popular selling in millions despite the underwhelming hardware, and limited games. Another company that has been doing game console for many year is Sony, and they must have liked Nintendo’s idea and sales numbers, as they’ve just unveiled Sony PlayStation Classic, a smaller replica of the original PlayStation with a limited number of games, and modern interfaces such as HDMI and USB… Sony PlayStation Classic specifications have not been fully disclosed but we can see two USB ports for the game controllers, an HDMI output port, and power, open, and reset button on top of the console. Despite the Open button, …

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Retro-uC Open Source MCU Brings ZX Spectrum, Commodore 64 Back to Life (Crowdfunding)

Retro-uC

If you’ve started your computing experience in the early eighties, you’ve probably used a ZX Spectrum, Commodore 64, and/or Atari ST home computers. Those products are long gone, except for collectors, but thanks to chips4makers project’s Zilog Z80, MOS 6502, and Motorola M68K cores are coming back to life via Retro-uC open source microcontroller. As a bonus, developers also worked on Retrino, a board following Arduino Mega form factor, and featuring Retro-uC MCU, as well as Retro-uC ProtoPlus with the chip fitted to a large Perf+ 2 style prototyping board, and Retro-uC Breadboard which can be inserted into a standard breadboard. Retro-uC Microcontroller Retro-uC specifications: Open source microcontroller with a Z80, MOS 6502 and Motorola 68000 core 4 kB of on-chip RAM 72x 5V digital general purpose I/O pins JTAG interface for programming the device Optionally bootable from external I2C flash memory I/O pins that can select the enabled core during reset One or more UART, I2C and PWM controllers …

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Raspberry Pi 3 based Retro Arcade Game Console Sells for under $250

Raspberry Pi 3 Arcade Game Console

When it comes to retro-gaming for the Raspberry Pi 3 board, there’s no lack of option with firmware like RetroPie or Lakka,  a few off-the-self accessories like USB or Bluetooth gamepad, a an HDMI monitor, you can get started in no time. However, if you want to make a retro arcade game console, it may take some more efforts, as you’d normally have have to design the case yourself, source the buttons and controls, the display, extra electronics and so on. But the “DIY classic retro arcade game console” based on Raspberry Pi 3 board currently sold on Banggood for $247.99 should make things much easier, as it’s supposed to be plug and play, while still offering the option to add or remove games, and mess around with the hardware if you wish to. Banggood did not provide the full technical details, but here’s what we know about the specifications: Based on Raspberry Pi 3 board (included) Display – HD …

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XU4Q Retro Gaming System Runs ODROID GameStation Turbo, Sells for $150 and Up

One of the use case for little Arm Linux boards is retro gaming thanks to open source projects like RetroPie, RetrOrangePi, Lakka, and others. To get a complete & usable system, it’s possible to purchase console kits, enclosures, or even complete game consoles running one of such emulators. This morning I’ve come accross another option, as Ameridroid is now taking pre-order for XU4Q Retro Gaming System for $149.95 and up. As it name implies, the console is based on ODROID-XU4Q, the fanless version of ODROID-XU4 board, which with its Exynos 5422 octa-core processor and 2GB RAM will be much more powerful than Raspberry Pi 3 boards, and most other boards on the market. The kit also includes OGST Gaming Console, GameSir G3w analog joystick controller, a power supply, and a 16GB microSD boot media flashed with ODROID Game Station Turbo based on Debian. If you already own an ODROID-XU4(Q) board, power supply, and one or more game controllers, you could …

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Android based Station OS Firmware Focuses on Multimedia and Retro Gaming for ROC-RK3328-CC and Firefly-RK3399 Boards

If you’re interesting in gaming and multimedia, one choice is to run Linux based RetrOrangePi or RetroPie on your favorite development board/SBC, and soon, with the upcoming release of Kodi 18, multimedia and retro gaming will just be an app installation away in Android, and other supported operating systems, since RetroPlayer retro-gaming emulator is part of the latest – and yet-to-be-released – version of Kodi. In the meantime, if you own a ROC-RK3328-CC and/or Firefly-RK3399 board(s), you may want to try Station OS, a firmware based on Android with a focus on 4K video playback and retro gaming. The description claims that Stations OS includes “more than 20 kinds of optimization for video and games, achieve multimedia center, Kodi 4K hardware decoding, game simulator hardware acceleration, real-time cast screen display, network acceleration, perfect Root.” The firmware does not use Kodi directly, but RKMC fork instead with some improvements, and they call the game emulator “Game Station”. The company has release …

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Kodi 18 Features and Improvements (FOSDEM 2018 Video)

Most Kodi users are now running Kodi 17.x Krypton that was initially released in February 2017, with the latest point version being Kodi 17.6. At the time of Krypton release, the developers had also started working on Kodi 18 “Leia” which should now be in “alpha”, and the stable release may only be a few months away although Kodi developers do not provide an ETA. What they did provide however – via Martijn Kaijser at FOSDEM 2018 – is a progress report for Kodi 18 “Leia”, as well as some insights into Kodi 19 whose development has just started. Kodi 18 has gone through a lot of cleanup with the code upgraded to C++11 standard, duplicate code and obsolete libraries removed, dropped unmaintained feature, and so on. They also moved non-core features such as audio encoders and decoders, PVR, picture decoding, etc…  to external plugins. This work resulted into 299,476 deleted lines of codes, and 387,205 added lines of codes …

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Pandora’s Box 5S Arcade Game Console – Teardown and Mini Review

Last year – and even in 2016 – , there was a fair amount of new retro gaming news, with products such a Nintendo SNES Classic Edition or GameShell Portable Retro console, as well as community supported firmware such as RetrOrangePi 4.0. GearBest asked me if I wanted to review something a little different: Pandora’s Box 5S (aka Pandora’s Key 5S) arcade game console with 999 games most (all?) designed for two players. This looked fun, and I was particularly interesting in checking out the hardware design, and hacking potential, e.g. if there could be a way to replace the board or firmware with your own. So in the review, I’ll focus mostly on the teardown, before shortly testing out the system and a few games. Pandora’s Box 5S Unboxing The device comes ins a large package (~70 x 24 x 16cm), so I’m surprised customs did not ask any questions, and it just went through without any issues. Once …

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