8-Bit Retro Gaming Console Build Tutorial

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vbrusca
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8-Bit Retro Gaming Console Build Tutorial

Unread post by vbrusca » Fri Apr 05, 2019 7:33 am

Image

Image

Total Project Cost: $52.50 + Shipping Costs
- ODROID-C1+: $35.00
- Case: $4.50
- 64GB Micro SD: $10.00
- Buttons and Breadboard Wires: $3.00
** Might cost more if you have to buy a set of buttons and breadboard wires.

Extras: (If you don't have extra of these lying around, some people do)
- HDMI Cable: $1.50 from hardkernel
- Micro USB Cable: $1.00 from hardkernel
- USB Charging Block: $5.00 or so any 5V/2A one will do.
- Controller / Keyboard & Mouse: Tons of options out there, the tutorial will cover controller setup.

Tools Needed: (You can skip the custom control buttons if you want, everything will still work fine, but they are very useful)
- Small screwdriver set, a set for electronics should do it.
- Soldering kit including soldering iron with fine tip and temperature control if possible.
- 2 NO (Naturally Open) console mount (nut screws onto the switch itself) switches
- 8 Jumper wires, you'll have enough if you order a small set, which brings the project cost up a bit.
- Drill and a good selection of drill bits.

Features:
- ODROID Goodness!
- Custom Software Control Button
- Custom Hardware Reset
- Support for Atari 2600, Atari 7800, ColecoVision, MSX-1, MSX-2, NES, GameBoy, GameBoy Color, Sega SG-1000, Sega Mark III, and Sega Master System configured and ready to go.
- Retroarch with XBM, custom scripts to monitor the software button, start retroarch, maintain antimicro.
- Configured for low memory usage and for use with included controller.
- Every ROM tested to see if it loads and properly associated with its emulator.
- Full linux desktop environment when not in game kiosk mode via antimicro.

Software Button Functions:
- 02 Second Hold: Software reset
- 04 Second Hold: Software shutdown
- 06 Second Hold: Turn off game kiosk mode.
- 08 Second Hold: Change to 1024x768x32bpp resolution and reboot.
- 10 Second Hold: Change to 720px32bpp resolution and reboot.

Build tutorial coming soon will overlap with the C1+ tutorial. Will include hardware setup, OS setup, configuration, optimization, scripts etc.
Last edited by vbrusca on Tue May 07, 2019 8:47 pm, edited 8 times in total.
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Re: 8-Bit Retro Gaming Console

Unread post by odroid » Fri Apr 05, 2019 8:48 am

Nice and fun project. :D

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Re: 8-Bit Retro Gaming Console

Unread post by Luke.go » Fri Apr 05, 2019 9:18 am

UI is looks like PS style :-)
good!~

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Re: 8-Bit Retro Gaming Console

Unread post by odroid » Fri Apr 05, 2019 9:25 am

It seems to be Lakka OS for C1+.

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Re: 8-Bit Retro Gaming Console

Unread post by vbrusca » Fri Apr 05, 2019 7:33 pm

No it's running Ubuntu 16.04 LTS, retroarch with XBM in kiosk mode. Basically you can control the entire system from the controller even on the linux desktop if need be. I tried most of the OSes available and 16.04 had the best mix of support for emulators and hardware and performance.
Lakka was running well, had more emulators available but had a ton of audio problems could not get audio working properly. I wanted the Retro1 (C1+), Retro2 (C2), Retro3 (Xu4) to all have the same or similar interface so 16.04 was the best for that currently. Also with the custom antimicro watcher script, it makes sure antimicro starts if retroarch is not running, you can pretty much have full control of the system for web browsing and other linux games especially if you hook up a keyboard and mouse.

In general Laka performed really well but audio issues killed it, Ubuntu has so much more support and flexibility and I really liked being able to just exit retroarch and open up a browser to look stuff up online.

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Re: 8-Bit Retro Gaming Console

Unread post by odroid » Sat Apr 06, 2019 9:19 am

I see. Thank you for the very detail explanation.
I love the Retro2 too. viewtopic.php?f=140&t=34427

A couple of questions.
Did you use 16.04 Mate image?
Did you build RetroArch by yourself?
Can you please write some articles about how you build the nice console series Retro1,2,3 for our Magazine?

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Re: 8-Bit Retro Gaming Console

Unread post by vbrusca » Wed Apr 10, 2019 8:59 am

Yup I started on each system with a 16.04 Mate image. One of the important things about all the OS testing was finding a single one that did the job on all devices, wasn't too slow or bloated and had good availability of packages.
In this case RetroArch was available via a ppa registration and apt-get package pulls. Though antimicro was compiled and I'll have all the instructions for that process.
I'll include all scripts etc.

Sure can do, let me get these tutorials up and that should be a solid basis for any other format of the information and you can use it however you like in the ODROID magazine.
I have things started and am just about to get into the soldering steps for those who want to add custom control buttons.
It's under the ODROID-GO build tutorial but I'll wait to post the link till I have more up.

I was playing the R2 this past weekend on 720p with two controllers worked great had a blast playing Streets of Rage 2 with my friend.

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Re: 8-Bit Retro Gaming Console

Unread post by odroid » Wed Apr 10, 2019 9:08 am

Great!
Our Chief editor will contact you soon. ;)

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Re: 8-Bit Retro Gaming Console

Unread post by vbrusca » Wed Apr 10, 2019 10:53 pm

All the hardware stuff is basically done.
Behold the beauty of the ODROID goodness!

Image

Then it's on to the software side of things. General plan below.

1. Base 16.04 MATE image and writing to an SD.
2. Checking partition sizes and basic software update, general prep.
3. Retroarch and emulator installation.
4. Antimicro compilation and configuration.
5. MATE optimization and customization.
6. Retroarch prep getting ready to game.
7. Custom control buttons setup - (scripts, services, MATE hooks) and final thoughts.
8. Emulator, bios, and controller errata.

http://middlemind.com/tutorials/odroid_ ... build.html

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Re: 8-Bit Retro Gaming Console

Unread post by vbrusca » Wed Apr 17, 2019 8:34 am

Alrighty the software tutorial is up and almost done.
I have one section left to finish which is the final configuration of RetroArch, antimicro, and the custom control button.
This is designed to work with the hardware tutorial and is almost the same exact process for the C1+ and the C2.
There are some C1+ caveats I have to double check, partition resizing, and swap space.

Retroarch installed and running, not quite configured yet.
Image

Antimicro compiled and running, not quite configured yet.
Image

http://middlemind.net/tutorials/odroid_ ... ld_sw.html
Last edited by vbrusca on Wed Apr 17, 2019 11:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 8-Bit Retro Gaming Console

Unread post by odroid » Wed Apr 17, 2019 9:02 am

Very comprehensive guide. :o

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Re: 8-Bit Retro Gaming Console

Unread post by vbrusca » Wed Apr 17, 2019 9:46 pm

Thank you. It looks way worse than it is. Really only takes a little while to get through and It's actually quite fun, for some people. Man you can learn a lot going through the steps too if you're new to Linux etc.

I think I'm going to break off the advanced retroarch config, MATE desktop optimization, and custom control button scripts into a 3rd smaller tutorial and stop tutorial 2 at ROM loading and execution of said ROM.

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Re: 8-Bit Retro Gaming Console

Unread post by vbrusca » Wed Apr 17, 2019 10:37 pm

OK so a complete software tutorial is up going through every single step and command in detail and it'll get you all the way to loading ROMS and playing them.
The 3rd tutorial will be a shorter one and that's where we'll put a bow on everything. It'll cover kiosk mode, custom control button, boot.ini stuff, advanced retroarch stuff, emulator errata etc.

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Re: 8-Bit Retro Gaming Console

Unread post by vbrusca » Sat Apr 20, 2019 12:05 am

The Final Touches tutorial is about 90% done. Have to do a little write up on boot.in and memory for C1+ and C2 but that shouldn't take long.
Custom control button tests in action, connecting Linux to the hardware button we created in the first tutorial, so awesome!!

Image

RetroArch kiosk mode in action, fully configured retro gaming console.

Image

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Re: 8-Bit Retro Gaming Console

Unread post by vbrusca » Sat Apr 20, 2019 12:15 am

Going to do a 4th little write up on advanced retroarch stuff like bios files, using two msx emulators to run ColecoVision and MSX side by side without having to change the emulator options, changing emulator options, etc.

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Re: 8-Bit Retro Gaming Console

Unread post by vbrusca » Sat Apr 20, 2019 9:37 pm

Third tutorial is up and done. Wraps up everything nicely and demos one of my old NES games in HDMI 720p and VGA 1024x768.
Final image in the tutorial is using the custom control button to switch to HDMI mode and testing a game on a TV.

Image

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Re: 8-Bit Retro Gaming Console Build Tutorial

Unread post by vbrusca » Tue May 14, 2019 9:54 am

Finishing up a version of this for the XU4 device. Afterwards going to try to create a tie in tutorial that goes over emulator setup, retroarch config, controller mappings, advanced stuff along those lines with retroarch settings and suggestions for the C1, C2, and XU4 versions of the hardware and for as many emulators as I can get running.

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Re: 8-Bit Retro Gaming Console Build Tutorial

Unread post by 1085243 » Mon Jun 03, 2019 9:30 am

I followed along with this series for the C1, but did this on my C0. I actually did it twice; once with the Meveric repositories, and once without it. In both instances there was hitching with all the snes emulation I tried. Seems like a frame pacing problem, but very good tutorial for me, since I'm new to Linux it taught me a few cool things.

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Re: 8-Bit Retro Gaming Console Build Tutorial

Unread post by vbrusca » Tue Jun 25, 2019 4:12 am

A tutorial that covers advanced retro configuration settings, default emulator choices, etc for Monku R1 (ODROID-C1+) devices.

http://middlemind.net/tutorials/odroid_ ... v_cfg.html

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