About this project
Get the news about the continuing KADE miniConsole+ project and information on pre-ordering and general sales at kadevice.com.
The KADE miniConsole+ is a versatile gaming device that connects retro gamepads and controllers to a huge variety of computers and consoles using plug and play detection.
The miniConsole+ is easy to use and works out of the box, no programming is necessary. Simply plug a controller into one end of miniConsole+ and a system into the other end and voila! you're ready to play. You can play all your favourite games as they were designed to be played with your favourite original controllers.
The device has been in development for 2 years already and has gone through a great number or revisions, redesigns and prototypes. We're really excited to announce the KADE miniConsole+ and its ground-breaking capabilities. We hope that you will support us on our journey by backing our Kickstarter project so we can make this happen.
We think our prototype device looks pretty neat in a shiny black aluminium case. We’re exploring other presentation options and labeling too. The exciting stuff happens inside the case!
The KADE team have a proven track record in developing and delivering products. We had a very successful Kickstarter project back in December 2012 with the open source KADE miniArcade hardware and software. The miniArcade made it easy for arcade enthusiasts to connect up their arcade controls. For that product we received a best hardware of the year 2013 award from the arcade community over at BYOAC.
KADE miniConsole+ is an open source project and we welcome community involvement. Feel free to contribute your ideas and help us to make miniConsole+ the ultimate retro gaming accessory.
Before we get started on the features, please take a look at the preview video.
Check out all the stuff that can be connected for plug and play awesomeness. There is a reason that we made the KADE logo looks like a swiss army knife.
So here's an overview of what the KADE miniConsole+ can do.
Plug and play gaming with all your favorite retro controllers and gamepads including Nintendo NES (Famicom), Nintendo Super NES (Super Famicom), Nintendo 64, Nintendo Gamecube, Nintendo Wii Classic/Pro Controller, Sega Master System, Sega Mega Drive (Genesis), Sega Saturn, Sega Dreamcast, Sony Playstation 1, Sony Playstation 2, Atari 2600, Atari 7800, Sinclair ZX Spectrum, Commodore 64, Commodore Amiga; as well as NEC PC-Engine, TurboGrafx16, Neo Geo, and many more gamepads. We have taken great care to regulate the voltage to each controller to make sure you are not ruining your classic hardware.
We also have options for connecting arcade controls and fight sticks. We will talk about that a little later.
If you think the number of controller types in is dizzying, then the number of systems the miniConsole+ outputs to is equally impressive. We know that there are increasingly more options for retro gaming so we built the KADE miniConsole+ to be extensible. You can connect to a Windows PC, Playstation 3, Raspberry Pi, Nintendo WiiU, Android (Including OUYA and Nvidia Shield), Macintosh, Linux and the original Xbox. You can connect to non-USB systems including Playstation 1, Playstation 2 and Nintendo Wii (and WiiU) via Wiimote.
...and we didn't stop there! We went a step further and created an optional add-on board (available after the kickstarter) to allow plug and play connectivity to older consoles including Nintendo NES (famicom), Nintendo Super NES (Super Famicom), Sega Master System, Sega Megadrive (Genesis), NeoGeo, Atari 2600 and many computers and consoles that have a 9 pin gamepad port. We'll talk more about this board later.
In this video, Jon shows how KADE miniConsole+ is connected to various computers and consoles.
- Android (this includes OUYA and Nvidia Shield devices)
- Wii Wiimote (Classic Controller emulated)
- WiiU Wiimote (Classic Controller emulated)
- WiiU via USB (gamecube converter emulated)
- xBox original (with simple converter cable)
- NES (with muti out expander)
- SNES (with muti out expander)
- Atari 2600 (with muti out expander)
- Sega Master System (with muti out expander)
- Sega Genesis (with muti out expander)
- Sinclair ZX Spectrum (with muti out expander)
- Atari 400/600/800/1200/XL/XE (with muti out expander)
- Atari ST (with muti out expander)
- Commodore Vic20/64/128 (with muti out expander)
- Amiga (with muti out expander)
- Neo Geo CD 15 pin (with muti out expander)
- Supergun Arcade(with muti out expander)
- xBox 360 (with PSX active converter cable)
- Dreamcast (with PSX active converter cable)
- Game Cube (with PSX active converter cable)
- Sega Saturn (with PSX active converter cable)
- many more!
- Nintendo 64
- GameCube (with beta rumble)
- Wii/WiiU Wiimote Classic Controller
- Wii/WiiU Wiimote Nunchuck
- PlayStation 1
- PlayStation 2
- Atari 2600
- Atari Analog Paddles
- Atari 5200
- Atari 7800
- Sega Master System 9 pin
- Sega Genesis 3 button
- Sega Genesis 6 button
- Sega Saturn
- Sega Dreamcast
- TurboGrafx-16 US large plug
- TurboGrafx-16 Japan small plug
- Neo Geo CD
- DDRgame.com metal (beta)
- RedOctane DDR metal (beta)
- Apple Vision Joystick
- Commodore C64/Vic20
- Commodore Amiga
- Amiga CD32
- Amstrad CPC
- Sinclair Spectrum MSX (Spectravideo)
- Collecovision (Joysticks only)
- Arcade via expansion board
- Arcade via DB 15
That is well over 800 combinations in one device!
We supply all of the adapter cables you need to connect up your favourite controllers and consoles to the miniConsole+ and we'll also provide instruction and open source DIY options for the makers out there.
All gamepad (input) cables connect via the DB15 port.
System (output) cables connect to either USB (type B) port or the RJ45 port.
Our gamepad adapters are made from controller extension cables. We fit a standard DB15 plug to one end to enable connection to the miniConsole+.
You can connect to systems including PC, PS3, Xbox, WiiU, Rasp Pi, Android, Mac and Linux using the provided USB (type B) extension cables or use RJ45 cables to connect to other non-USB systems such as Playstation 1, Playstation 2, Wii (wireless via wiimote) and WiiU (wireless via wiimote).
In this video, Kevin explains all about our adapter cables, how we came up with a simple design, and how we make them.
Connect KADE miniConsole+ to a Wiimote controller and it will be recognised as a classic controller on the Wii and Wii U.
Play your favorite Wii and Wii U titles wirelessly with any of the supported gamepads. You can even enjoy wireless gaming on other systems too after the correct drivers are installed. Happy days.
The Playstation 2 is the best selling console of all time. In our extensive testing, the KADE team has fine tuned the Playstation (PSX) output on miniConsole+ so that it works with popular converter cables. This allows you to connect the miniConsole+ device to the Xbox 360, Dreamcast and many other consoles.
The miniConsole+ can be extended with a choice of digital and analog arcade expansion boards which make it easy for you to wire up to your own custom arcade controls and fight sticks.
Kevin made a fight stick which can be connected to any supported system via the RJ45 and USB outputs. You can use the built-in arcade controls or plug in any supported retro controller via the DB15 port.
Kevin gives a tour of his fight stick in this video.
Here's how we wire up the internals of the fight stick.
We considered on making the KADE fight stick a limited edition reward but ended up deciding that the one and only, Kevin's personal KADE fight stick would be given away in our Facebook contest.
Be imaginative, lose the case and use KADE miniConsole+ naked inside your own projects.
We also retrofitted our miniConsole+ to an existing 2 player arcade stick. If you look closely you'll see that we connected our controls to a Rasp Pi with HDMI output on the back. This is an all-in-one control panel that can be connected direct to a TV for instant gaming on the move.
The KADE miniConsole+ is perfect for arcade machines. You can wire up arcade controls from the control panel and also have the option to connect original gamepads and play the console classics as they were designed to be played.
Elmar has made a fantastic NES themed bartop with classic looks. The front panel has 2 controller ports available for gaming with retro gamepads. It's perfect!. You can read about the creation of his NES bartop on the BYOAC forum. Elmar comments on the KADE hardware which powers the control panel - "its really small, easy to wire and program, and has worked absolutely flawlessly".
What will you do with your KADE miniConsole+?
Eric Fraga, from Cosmic Effect (a respected retro-gaming channel in Brazil) has reviewed a prototype KADE miniConsole+ device. In his video, Eric has fun connecting various retro gamepads to play his favourite games and immerses himself in the experience. We loved the video so much that we requested English subtitles. Eric obliged. Thanks for being awesome Eric!
We will add more reviews when they come in. Watch this space.
To help you get the most from your device, we made cool open source software specially for miniConsole+. The gamepad configuration tool which we are calling "the mapper” allows you to configure gamepad mappings to your own liking. It's easy to use and intuitive – the mapper shows you how your gamepad maps are interpreted by the various connected systems. Here's a short preview video.
The utility is cross platform and currently runs on Windows and Mac. A Linux version should be available soon.
The miniConsole+ device itself is plug and play out of the box so this utility is not essential and is not aimed at everyone. The utility is intended for those that want to tinker with the settings and make changes to the default gamepad assignments. The mapper will allow you to manage your gamepad configurations in one place, rather than customising each and every emulator that you are running for example. You can verify your updated mappings using the built-in gamepad tester.
KADE miniConsole+ has it's roots firmly with Bruno and his RetroPad Adapter series of encoders.
Prior to joining the KADE team, Bruno had done some amazing work with his open source/open hardware "RetroPad Adapter". There were several models made, each having one output such as USB, Playstation and Wii, and there were many third-party derivative products based on his work.
In the last 2 years Bruno has transferred all of his energy into the new KADE miniConsole+ and together as a team we hope to realise his vision of a one device fits all, plug and play solution.
We had a successful KickStarter campaign back in December 2012 with our KADE miniArcade encoder. Our open source hardware and customisable software made it easy to wire up various arcade controls to computers.
We were amazed and overwhelmed with the level of encouragement and support we received from our KickStarter backers. It took less than 12 hours from launch for us to reach our KickStarter funding goal.
The KADE miniArcade has since become a popular encoder within the arcade community and has been used in some truly exceptional arcade machine projects.
The American Classic Arcade Museum are now using KADE miniArcade devices in their laser disc machines. Since laser disc players and media are notoriously unreliable in an arcade setting, ACAM has refitted their machines with computers and KADE miniArcade devices to preserve the gameplay.
Joshua Debonis & Nik Mikros used KADE miniArcade in a prototype version of their "Killer Queen" arcade machine. It has a massive 10 players working together in 2 teams. It's a huge cabinet and a unique gaming experience. We love it.
Floris was an early adopter of KADE technology and we were pleased to supply him with early prototypes of miniArcade for his 2 player Xbox powered bartop machine. You can read about his creation of the awesome "evoXRcade" machine on the BYOAC forum.
Josh Axelrod's miniature MAME arcade cabinet thrilled crowds at Maker Faire New York. Popcade is a mini arcade cabinet that packs all the fun of a full-sized classic arcade game into a cabinet that's just half the size. The 2 player controls are connected to a single KADE miniArcade device which Josh showed off to more than a few curious folks who wanted a peek inside the cabinet. Is that Ben Heck? Find out more on the Popcade site.
...and KADE miniArcade was not just used for arcades. Wade used his inside a custom Mach 3 CNC pendant that controls his DIY CNC machine. Wade says "I use the CNC around twice a week and I have never once had to fiddle with the KADE after I programmed it...the thing just WORKS.". Find out more about his CNC project on the BYOAC forum.
The KADE team were very proud to be awarded the 2013 BYOAC User Choice Award for Best Hardware voted for by the arcade community.
The KADE team comprises of Kevin (US), Bruno (Brazil) and Jon (UK).
We have an excellent compliment of skills and work together really well, despite being thousands of miles apart and working in different timezones! We would all love to meet and share a beer one day!
Bruno Freitas (Brazil)
Bruno is a software engineer who recently discovered the beauty of micro-controllers. He's an avid retro gamer and he's about to have an old dream come true: having his own arcade machine. It will be powered by KADE, of course! Bruno is an open source and open hardware enthusiast. Among his works, the ones which most stand out are:
- Wii RetroPad Adapter - An old controllers adapter for the Nintendo Wii
- USB RetroPad Adapter - An old controllers adapter for PCs and PS3
- RetroVGA - A VGA scanline generator
Bruno is also very proud of being part of the KADE Encoder core development team.
Bruno's favourite console: Sega Mega Drive
Bruno's favourite gamepad: SNES
Jon Wilson (UK)
Jon is a software guy with over 20 years programming experience and he likes to make electronic things. Prior to KADE he spent much of his spare time building arcade machines and has produced a video guide to building one. Jon previously engaged with the arcade community to develop a low-cost and multi-function USB keyboard encoder.
Jon's first console: Atari 2600
Jon's first computer: ZX Spectrum 48K
Jon's favourite console: Amiga CD32
Jon's favourite gamepad: SNES
Jon's favourite food: Crumpets
Kevin Mackett (US)
Kevin has over 20 years experience in software development and educational technology. He grew up playing in arcades and build his first home arcade cabinet back in the 90s. Kevin enjoys supporting DIY home arcade projects by sharing his arcade control, cabinet, and emulation knowledge especially when the xBox is involved. Prior to KADE he spent way too much time doing pad hacks getting his xBox, x360, dreamcast, PS2, PC, Android phone/tablet, and Mac hooked up to arcade controls.
Kevin's first console: Atari 2600
Kevin's favourite (favorite) console: modded xBox
Kevin's favourite dpad only gamepad: SNES
Kevin's favourite gamepad with analog: Gamecube
Kevin's favourite word to hear Jon say: "aluminium" (not aluminum). Go ahead, listen for yourself.
See how far we've come in the last couple of years. Jon recorded a private video to update Kevin and Bruno on progress with testing of a very early, chunky, prototype of KADE miniConsole+.
Jon and his son Oliver had some fun programming a gamepad test tool on the Sinclair ZX Spectrum.
Getting down with the DK funk.
Risks and challenges
We've done something like this before, successfully.
This project has more moving pieces than our previous one and we are applying lessons learned waiting to launch the kickstarter until the product is mature and by giving ourselves a bit more time to fulfill rewards.
The volume needed to get converter cables created at scale is much more of a challenge so we are prepared to make them by hand if we do not hit the funding levels required for external fabrication. We do not shy away from our soldering irons.
We will have backup fabrication houses on standby should there be any problem with the fabrication of the main PCB.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
Support this project
- (46 days)