Smallest possible HDMI PC for emulators?

Discussion in 'Mobile Phones and Media Players' started by Harsky, Jul 19, 2015.

  1. Harsky
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    Harsky Madmin

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    As much as I want to play retro games on the original hardware, I realise that it's just not possible in the big screen living room TV because the amount of wires to deal with would drive my family mad.

    I really want a small as possible device like a PC on a stick thing for hdmi ports but I have no idea if it's easier to buy a cheap Android one or spend a little more?

    I'm also aware of the Retropi but I was wondering it it's possible to have something that can be powered by the USB port of my TV.
     
  2. Daniablo

    Daniablo Newbie

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    You could grab an Amazon Fire Stick (which you can power by the TV) and side-load an emulator using http://sideloadfiretv.com/ however I don't know how'd you'd go about getting a controller to work (maybe you can side load one of those android PS3 Controller apps?) or you can try with the Fire Stick Remote.
     
  3. sarkwalvein

    sarkwalvein Professional asshole at GBATemp

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    Yes, it is possible if you go the android way.
    I can assure you this can be done using a RPi (powered by the USB TV, connected to the HDMI, running emulators).
    But for sure there are better and smaller options.
     
  4. andrew weeks

    andrew weeks GBAtemp Regular

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    MMMM if you want to run Dolphin of PCSX2 i think you should need a laptop
     
  5. The Real Jdbye

    The Real Jdbye Always Remember 30/07/08

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    You might be able to power a Pi 1 from the TV's USB port, just barely. The Pi 2 probably draws too much power though.
    You could always use an Y-splitter.
    The Pi is small enough to stick on the back of the TV and forget about, so it really doesn't need to be any smaller.
    I've heard that many Android sticks suffer from heat issues, which might be due to their extremely small size. You won't have that issue with a Pi.
    It's definitely not a bad idea to go with a Pi, it's a little more work than an Android stick but you have more freedom with it. You can even use it as a PC if you want to.
    Otherwise, a cheap Android stick will probably work fine too, just make sure you get one that has good reviews. You can't go wrong with either really.
     
  6. Harsky
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    Harsky Madmin

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    I think the other big factor is controller. I have a PS3/Wii U Pro controller and if there's any android sticks with built in bluetooth that can handle those, that would be awesome.
     
  7. Amadren

    Amadren SOMEBODY ONCE

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    Last edited by Amadren, Jul 20, 2015
  8. Harsky
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    Harsky Madmin

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    Damn, I'm now tempted by the Raspberry Pi. Is the cheapest model okay for the NES/SNES/GBA games or should I splash out and get the Pi 2?
     
  9. Amadren

    Amadren SOMEBODY ONCE

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    It's recommended use Pi 2 but you can also use a Raspberry Pi 1 B/B+. You'll also need a joystick and a 16gb SD Card. But, if you want a good solution to play easily and convienently retro games, go with the RPI solution, you'll love it :) You can also, for exemple, use another SD card and install a media server...
     
  10. Harsky
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    Harsky Madmin

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    Bought the Raspberry Pi 2 today from my local electrical store. Installing Recal now but is it possible to get Spillpass working on this at the same time as well?
     
  11. Xenon Hacks

    Xenon Hacks GBAtemp Guru

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  12. Amadren

    Amadren SOMEBODY ONCE

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  13. Harsky
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    Harsky Madmin

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    Over a week later with the Raspberry Pi 2 and I thought I'd give a mini review.For some reason, Recalbox wasn't my type of emulator program so I went for the old fashioned Retropie. As a newbie who has no grasp of anything command line related, an hour with Youtube and I was finally able to get NES/SNES games running without any problem. Only major problem was that the cheap £1 bluetooth adapter didn't work so I hard to resort to a wired PS3. Waiting for a different one that's been recommended on different sites.

    My other question is, is there another way of turning on the Raspberry Pi? I go to Retropie to shut it down and when I want to play it again, I have to unplug and plug in the micro usb charger to turn it on. Is there a something I'm missing or am I that stupid?
     
  14. The Real Jdbye

    The Real Jdbye Always Remember 30/07/08

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    You can also grab OSMC or another Kodi-based distro (or just install Kodi on the distro you're using now) and the retroarch binaries and use "Rom Collection Browser" to browse roms and launch them with the emulator. It takes a little bit of setting up, but allows you to use the Pi as both a media center and an emulator console, all from within Kodi.

    The Pi is not really designed to be shut down, power usage during idle is negligible anyway, so you might as well leave it on. But it's possible to add a power switch to it so that it can be turned back on when it's off.
     
    Last edited by The Real Jdbye, Jul 30, 2015
  15. Kippykip

    Kippykip D E L E T T H I S

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    Open Pandora?
     
  16. Harsky
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    Harsky Madmin

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    Yeah, that was kind of the only thing I missed from Recalbox. The ability to have that XBMC type program.
     
  17. The Real Jdbye

    The Real Jdbye Always Remember 30/07/08

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    http://www.raspberry-pi-geek.com/Ar...On-Off-switch-to-your-Raspberry-Pi/(offset)/2
    By the way, here's some info on how you can add a fully functioning on/off switch, requires some basic knowledge of electronic components. Not recommended for the faint hearted :P

    I used OpenELEC (Kodi based distro) with RetroArch and Rom Collection Browser on my Pi 1 (which I returned to get a Pi 2), and it worked pretty well. RCB takes a while to scan a large ROM collection, because it downloads metadata and images for every game, and every time it fails to find metadata/coverart it sits there for a long time before showing an error message that you have to close before it continues. Once that was done though, it worked pretty well. You just pick the game from the RCB plugin, with options to sort or filter by year, name, manufacturer etc. Kodi closes while games are running to maximize available resources, and restarts once you close the emulator (takes a few seconds to restart though)
    There's also another plugin for Kodi that can be used for browsing and launching ROMs,I forgot what it's called though. It's Advanced Launcher.

    Edit: Meant to say OSMC earlier not TVMC.
     
    Last edited by The Real Jdbye, Jul 30, 2015