I have started to build my NES PC, which as the name implies that it is a fully functioning PC built inside a NES case. As of now, I have ordered mostly all parts needed and I'm waiting for them, I will put my pictures and progress in this thread. I'm also using this thread to keep track of all my Ideas and would be happy to get constructive feedback on them.
The progress I have made this far is not astonishing, but parts does cost and I dont have unlimited money, but now I have enough and shipping is currently at writing moment my bottle neck. What I have done this far is basically a bit of soldering and planing, I have taken out all NES hardware, and modified the power switch PCB for the mobo I have ordered, the Power button is no longer sticky, and its wired in one(1) plug that follows the specifications of the frontpanel pinout on the motherboard (this is quite neat I think
). I also removed the controller plugs from their PCB's and soldered them ready for when my 4NES4SNES adapter hits my mailbox.
These are the the parts I have ordered, I do not know the model number of all of them, cause I ordered most of them in a physical store (yes they do still exist) to save money on shipping and tax.
AT5IONT-I ION 2 mother board with HDMI, 1.8Ghz dual core and USB 3.0 + some other goodies
Slimline Blu-ray burner (got this one for the price of a Blu-ray reader, I'll be angry if the store clerk messed this order up)
Wifi N mini PCI express card, with dual antenna, just hope it will fit in height haha
4GB RAM 2x2GB SODIMM
picoPSU-150-XT Which supports up to 150W AC/DC adapter
150W AC Universal Adapter
4NES4SNES USB adapter card from http://www.raphnet.net
And Im gonna use a 2.5" 160GB S-ATA drive I have laying around, it's not that fast, but I'm thinking about a 32GB superfast SSD around X-mas. Dont need a lot of internal storage on this unit, since its mostly gonna stream from LAN via TP cable anyway, and for storage external USB/eS-ATA will suffice.
The goal of this project is to make a HTPC compilant with my wettest dreams, and stuff it all inside a NES box. But sadly I have to wett dreams for that
I also want to retain the look and function of the NES as much as possible this includes:
Power light, Power button, Reset button working as you would think
The Controller ports to be HID compilant
The A/V plugs working as Headset / Mic plugs (redo the labeling underneath)
The 9V plug will now work as a 12V plug powering everything
The two other holes (square and round) will probably become two external antenna ports for Wifi, but im open to suggestion.
And I do of course have to change the back to have a clean hole to fit the backplate of the mobo, and the bottom of the NES might undergo some small or medium visual changes.
One of my best friends ain't so bad a plastic and metal worker, so he will help me with the plastic work (want it to look pristine)
I will also probably cut a NES cartridge and use it as a front plate for the Blu-ray burner, and my plastic working friend is toying with the idea to make the black plastic on the front fold up as a lid to show a USB port, but this would require that the front looks original when the lid is shut with the hinges invisible (inside the case). But this USB port might be put to better use internally with a mini Bluetooth adapter I have laying around.
And for the temperature I am sure I'll get a higher than wanted result, but I'm aiming for HTPC use and not playing Crysis (most of the gaming that will be done will probably be up to PS1 or PS2 emulators). Hoping that two 60x60mm fans on top and two 50x50mm fans on the bottom will suffice, the top fans will be placed under the fan rills, and the box on the bottom will hold the two bottom fans, and I think I'll change the top of the box to have a grill for airflow. Thinking suction on top and blowing on the bottom?
For the OS, I'll probably just use Ubuntu with auto login to XBMC or Boxee, and to get to standard desktop, have to logout manually and enter credentials, this is where the future SSD will make the bootup super speedy!! (the record number I have read is 3.6 seconds on a SSD for the current Ubuntu release, I am hoping to hit this number or even faster with the upcoming Ubuntu release plus a 355MB/s read SSD. The record time was done on 230MB/s and Ubuntu 10.4 beta)
As for controlling this device I have yet to decide, in the meantime I can always control it over Wifi with either my Nokia N900 or HTC Wildfire (XBMC has a nice wifi remote function via HTTP and via apps for Android). But I am aiming for something professional, maybe I will gut a NES controller and put a mini qwerty on the bottom (just thought about that while writing!), Anyone know of any Bluetooth qwerty small enough? And still have to retain the gamepad on top, but those would best be mapped to directional keys, A, B, space and enter on the BT keyboard.... Need feedback on this idea!!!!
Please everyone be a critic here, need feedback on my Ideas and if you have any awesome additional Ideas that would be great!!