Retro emulation console

yusuo

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I would love to build a retro console and would like to know the cheapest way to do this. I would love the original controllers to work with each emulator and for it to work with hdmi as getting an old TV is not possible (it's the only thing that's holding me back from getting the original consoles)

Is a raspberry pi and getting usb controllers the easiest way to do this. Also if so can the what can the raspberry pi comfortably emulate, dreamcast, n64.

Obviously if there is another option that isn't a pi let me know
 
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I would love to build a retro console and would like to know the cheapest way to do this. I would love the original controllers to work with each emulator and for it to work with hdmi as getting an old TV is not possible (it's the only thing that's holding me back from getting the original consoles)

Is a raspberry pi and getting usb controllers the easiest way to do this. Also if so can the what can the raspberry pi comfortably emulate, dreamcast, n64.

Obviously if there is another option that isn't a pi let me know
Well, I mean, if you have an old laptop lying around, you could just use that instead :P

But, AFAIK, the Raspberry Pi 3 can emulate everything up to the PlayStation rather well. You may need to overclock your Pi's CPU in order to get the newer systems to run at full speed. N64 and Dreamcast games should work well, but there may be compatibility issues here and there. You'll want to stick with RetroPie, which organizes emulators for a bunch of different systems in a nice and organized fashion. It's available not just for the Raspberry Pi, but for Windows, Mac, and Linux as well IIRC.

And yes, the Raspberry Pi supports HDMI, so again, if you don't have an old laptop lying around, the Pi 3 is your best option.

As for getting the original controllers to work with each emulator... You're going to have to configure each controller separately in EmulationStation, the front-end launcher for RetroPie. I found a set of USB Adapters for a few systems here:
NES Adapter
Mega Drive/Genesis Adapter
SNES Adapter

Unless you're planning on emulating every single system, you might just want to stick with 2 or 3 systems for these controllers and call it a day, or else you'll have controller ports lying all over your system.

Also, and you probably don't want to do this if this a beginning project, but you could perhaps wire your emulation system to read original cartridges like what this guy did here: https://hackaday.com/2009/06/19/usb-reader-for-snes-game-carts/

You might also want to get a case for your Raspberry Pi. You can purchase one on Amazon, or 3D Print one yourself. There are a lot of 3D Cases that are made to look like old gaming systems, so search around, and see what you like.

That should be about it. If you want to find out more information, try searching the tubes, or look up "raspberry pi retro game system". You'll find a lot of useful results.
 

Sakitoshi

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pi 3 owner here running retropie.
If you ever want to emulate n64, just forget it. n64 emulation runs bad in most games and the ones that run at normal speed have graphical issues, one of the more acceptable games is mario kart 64 but still the tv screens on luigi circuit and wario stadium don't work. note that I have overclocked my pi up to 1350mhz but doesn't help all that much.
I haven't bothered with dreamcast since n64 doesn't run all that well.
on the other hand, psone runs excellent. metal gear runs solid (hehe) with all the framebuffer effects (water waves and all that) intact and the disc change can be done without much hassle.
Snes and below run 100% as you may expect, just note that starfox 2 could lag a bit because the emulator hasn't added speed hacks for it yet, starfox 1 runs without issues.
As for arcade, finalburn alpha will run almost anything at full speed with just a handful of games requiring mame (gunbird 2 is the only I have that needs mame atm).
The crt shader (without curvature, that is the more stupid thing ever) looks marvelous and there are also portable lcd screen shaders to emulate gba and such.

If you really want to run n64 and dreamcast I recommend you to get a cheap pc with an old i3 or i5, you could even run dolphin if you get a good i5 and spend some extra cash on a low profile graphic card.
 

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