Hey guys! After sucessfully launching RetroStone on Kickstarter last year, 8BCraft is proud to present you the revised Metal version of RetroStone! (Note that this is not RetroStone2!)
So this is basically a revision of the RetroStone on which all the hardware issues that we encountered on first production have been solved. System is now stable and optimized to reduce defect rate. And of course with a really dashing aluminium CNC case which gives an incredible feel!
CNC case means that each case is made individually out of a block of aluminium. A machine drills the block until it gives the RetroStone shape! Then the case are ionidized to prevent corrosion. The process is long, making the production cost very high, specially compared to injection molding cases.
More pictures at the end of the campaign!
But first, for those who don't know yet RetroStone, here is some more details !
RetroStone is a mini computer running an emulation station OS (built on linux).
You can use it to play to over 50 old video game systems : Gameboy, Gameboy Color, Gameboy Advance, Super Nintendo, Megadrive/Genesis, Atari, MaMe and so on. You can have a look here to all the supported systems.
In more technical terms it is basically a SbC (single board computers) with all the peripheral needed to make a handheld console (screen, speaker, battery...). Making it perfect to run Emulation Station/Retropie.
So yes, all your childhood video games on one handheld console, that you can plug to your TV, and play multiplayer. Yes that's a high five to my-10-years-old-self!
But wait! You are saying that we can play any game of our childhood, what does it mean exactly? Does RetroStone comes with games integrated?
Software : Retrostone is compatible with Retrorangepi (Retropie distribution for Armbian). Retropie is an awesome emulation station software (super easy installation, it will be explained step-by-step in the tutorial!). You can check them on Youtube for demo ! Those softwares come with a wide range of systems supported : Gameboy, Gameboy Color, Gameboy Advance, Super Nintendo, Megadrive/Genesis, Atari, MaMe and so on. You can have a look here to all the supported systems.
RetroStone is also compatible with most other H3 SBC OS (Armbian, Android...).
Games : To install a game you need it's ROM file. A ROM file is a computer file containing all the game's data. You can legally download ROM of unlicensed games on the internet.
Some homebrew games of which makers agreed to have their games integrated into Retrorangepi :
For licensed games legality of downloading ROM depend on your country. In some you need to have original copy of the game. In some others it may not be legal at all to download ROMs from internet.
Then to install the ROM you can transfer it with a USB stick to RetroStone.
Develop your own game, share them and discover other RetroStone user's games !
I think there's a lot of potential to develop and share your games! There's a topic on the 8BCraft forum dedicated to this. Let's make it more alive! :)
HDMI output : you can connect RetroStone to your big TV !
4 USB connectors!
Play up to 5 players !
Take RetroStone everywhere with it's compact form factor! No more boring flights for you!
MicroSD easy access. Standard 5V micro-USB charger.
Inside you have a RetroStone Pi, this SBC (single board computer) runs a H3 processor which is 4 cores 1.2GHz.
Note : the energysquare pins are not supported, as case is metal it shortcuts the power. So if you upgrade you will have to remove the pins (remove them manually).
Basic RetroStone will come with 16GB SD card, which can already hold thousands of games.
Upgrade from 16GB to 32GB memory for FREE by sharing RetroStone kickstarter on facebook!
Copy the URL of your facebook post and save it for later. At the end of the Kickstarter I will send you a survey for shipping details, there you will be able to put your URL to get the free memory card upgrade!
Joining me on kickstarter is not only about getting a nice game console. It's also about the journey of the project! As you can check on my first Kickstarter campaign Raspiboy I made a point to give good updates (check for yourself HERE). With interesting facts on production.
Here are exemples of what people thought of them!
The main advantages of RetroStone compared with Raspiboy are :
- Easy memory card access
- Assembled and fully tested
- Compact form factor
- More powerful CPU
- Ethernet, more USB connectors and full size HDMI
Size comparaison of RetroStone and Raspiboy
By connecting a screen, keyboard and mouse, your console becomes the perfect living room computer. Write a novel, surf YouTube or watch your movies on your big screen while kicking back on your couch.
Makers I have not forgotten you! RetroStone may come assembled but we left room for customization!
RetroStone has 26 GPIO available, with built-in pull up resistors
2 of those GPIO have optional buttons built-in the RetroStone Pi if you want to add C and Z buttons. Also as the cases will be CNC you will be able to choose if you want the case drilled for additional buttons or not.
That's something I often hear. Lot of kickstarter project are scams and never deliver their promised product. But that is because lot of them are selling ideas that are not ready to industrialize. Sometime you can even see their pictures are just 3D modeling, meaning they don't even have prototypes. Or they can have prototypes that are not ready for industrialized production.
As my 2 first Kickstarter campaigns can attest I am as transparant as I can be, my prototypes are really ready for production. And I did delivered all my backers!
Please check my website to see to see for yourself : www.8BCraft.com
It can be :
- For yourself to have some good fun with friends.
- To make a gift to a special someone.
- To discover the world of hackerspaces, fablabs and SBC (single board computers).
90€ : RetroStone Aluminium CNC case - EARLY BIRDS
100€ : RetroStone Aluminium CNC case - Kickstarter price
215€ : RetroStone Metal Edition - EARLY BIRDS
230€ : RetroStone Metal Edition - Kickstarter price
430€ : 2 RetroStone Metal Edition
1000€ : 5 RetroStone Metal Edition
PCB of RetroStone pi are already in stock. So it only needs to make the CNC cases, assemble, test and ship the units!
That should take about 2 months.
Risks and challenges
The aluminium CNC factory have relatively high MOQ and the metal cases are very expensive to manufacture. This is why the metal edition is more expensive than normal RetroStone.
For this reason we must reach a reasonable amount of pre-order to be able to order the metal cases!
- (15 days)