hdmyboy: full hd for your 1989 game boy.
hdmyboy: full hd for your 1989 game boy.
hdmyboy: connect your game boy classic to your tv or youtube/twitch recorder over hdmi with colour palettes and a nes controller.
hdmyboy: connect your game boy classic to your tv or youtube/twitch recorder over hdmi with colour palettes and a nes controller. Read more
About this project
Last year Josh hacked a game boy classic so he could play it on an old computer monitor. By tapping into the digital signal deep within the game boy, he could generate amazingly crisp graphics. After playing some Mario, Tetris and Zelda we decided we just had to share this and take it to the next step.
So we spent the last 3 months building a prototype which supports full hd and makes it super easy for everyone to upgrade their game boys. Now it's time to do one large scale production run!
This year it is Game Boys 25th birthday, so see this as our last minute gift to the best classic handheld console!
The hdmyboy is an upgrade that you install into a game boy. It works just on the original Model DMG-01 (check on the back) that launched in 1989. The one that is in your box of your most prized childhood possessions, your kitchen draw, the attic, a car boot sale. If you have lost yours, select the pledge with a game boy, or find one quick online, there's loads of second hand ones around.
hdmyboy gives you the sharpest and best picture you've ever seen come out of your gameboy. Rather than scale or stretch like other systems would do, we intelligently redraw every single pixel. This is because we tap into the digital data, not at just the picture coming out of the game boy. This results in amazing quality without blurs (or anti-aliasing)!
We prefer 1080P FullHD, but support 720P. There are two modes: HD7, which redraws the game boy screen 7 times the size and HD712, which redraws every pixel slightly wider so the graphics fill your screen. So technically HD7 gives you 1120x1007 and HD712 gives you 1920x1007 pixels.
hdmyboy also works with streamers like the elgato game capture hd 60 and twitch.tv so everyone can watch you play!
Here's some of the 1080p quality captured by cam of the screen.
The original gameboy had 4 shades of green but with HD we have almost 17 million colours to choose from. So will give you the option of selecting one of our 32 colour palettes.
hdmyboy comes with a replica controller with a really long cable so you can enjoy full hd without needing to sit to close to your TV. This makes your gameboy kind of a mobile console. Your can still play on your game boy controls if you prefer that feel, or want to take your game boy out on the road.
hdmyboy is a module which inserts between the front and back of the gameboy. It adds about 12mm/0.5inch thickness to your game boy and can be easily installed or removed in under 10 minutes.
Open your game boy with the special screwdriver supplied. Reconnect a cable into your hdmyboy and voila a full hd game boy sandwich! No gameboys will be harmed when installing the upgrade! If you have a game boy which is missing vertical screen lines, this upgrade mostly brings them back.
hdmyboy has a screensaver to protect your television and to thank all our backers for their contribution to gaming history. We will design it once we know how many names we are dealing with. But it will be awesome, plus special treatment for the Protobacker and Super Deluxe pledgers.
We have invested a full 3 months and a chunk of our savings to build a fully functional, feature complete prototype. Thereby considerably reducing the risk of this project for both our backers and ourselves as it is almost the final product.
To build a single hdmyboy: the off-the-shelf electrical components cost over €80, and the custom components like the circuit board, shell and ribbon cables add up to another €80. Then there are the extras like the controller, screwdriver, screws and packaging. And then we haven't spoken about things like logistics and shipping costs. So with man hours, it would add up to about €350. And timewise a 100 units would take a year to produce :)
But by ordering in bulk: we can cut down on the prices of components and get certain assembly processes automated. Our time would then focus more on quality control and the logistics. Timeless we would still be investing another 5 months each to manage the production of 500 units.
Plus, we would be able to put more money into a high quality precision product e.g. injection moulding for the shell of the hdmyboy. After that we will invest more in refining the software, higher quality materials, better packaging and outsourcing some of the work.
First we will complete testing by sending out the Protobacker pledges to get more people testing with even more games and televions in different countries. With their feedback and your requests we will improve the design.
We will go through a number of design cycles to improve the design of the circuit board. With the final dimensions we start producing the physical shell and the required packaging design. After which final assembly will happen in batches.
Once we are complete we will start sending the product out in batches to ensure that any difficulties that may have slipped through our Quality Assurance can be caught early on.
Josh, 24 and Zane, 35 are brothers who live in the South of The Netherlands. It has been great working together like this, it has given us the chance to get to know each other in a very different way. That could be one of the greatest reward of doing this project.
Joshua is the technical mastermind behind the hdmyboy, he was coding batch files before he could read or write. Nowadays he hacks everyday objects for fun, with a passion for video, sound and gaming. He chairs the local Hackspace (ackspace.nl) and has worked professionally as an electronics engineer for the last 3 years.
Why Kickstart? After hacking the first game boy, he wanted to see his design to the next level and build something that could be used by non-hacking individuals.
Zane has been an interaction designer for the last 10 years. He's designed interfaces for everything from iPad apps to Coffee machines. He loves cutting edge technology and has been dabbling in home 3d printing. After leaving his job for some time off last year he travelled from Europe to India by train and then spent 5 months there.
Why Kickstart? After working on a lot of (digital) products and interfaces for clients he wanted to see a product of his choice evolve from idea to market.
Risks and challenges
We have minimised the number of Risks and Challenges by demonstrating all the functionality of the final product in our prototype. This is not some theoretical idea on a drawing board, we have already enjoyed many nights of FullHD game boy fun :)
If we run into something we cannot solve, we have friends and partners with years of experience to whom we can turn for advice. And otherwise, we will hire external expertise.
Lastly, if something does not go according to plan, you'll be the first to know, so you guys can show us some support and cheer us on ;)Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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