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Old 13th March 2013, 10:47 PM   #1
perrymitchell Thread Starter
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Default SNES to Hyperspin box

Hey guys,

Doing my first arcade/retro-gaming rig build and I'm documenting the process - I'm doing another SNES conversion, inspired by others before me (thanks Exige):

http://www.instructables.com/id/Supe...ndo-PC-artigo/ and http://hackaday.com/2011/03/30/snes-to-pc/

I'm planning to rip the contents of an NTSC Super Nintendo out to make room for a Mini-ITX mobo with onboard graphics.. Something that requires minimum power and cooling but gives enough juice to run emulated systems up to and -maybe- some XBox titles.

The system will run on Windows 7 using Hyperspin 1.0 as the frontend - Customised to the nth degree.

I'll document the process here in this thread, updating on a parts-received basis. I'd love to hear your feedback/encouragement/criticism. I love all the crazy old games but please pardon my ignorance on certain matters

--------------------------------------
Build Statistics and Progress

Progress: Incomplete

Bought Items:
- SNES NTSC and SNES PAL ($50)
- Arrowroot ($1)
- Vanish Oxy-action ($5)
- Hydrogen Peroxide 500ml 6% ($10)
- Glycerin ($5)
- Nintendo security screwdriver 4.5mm ($10)
- 2x new SNES controllers ($15)
- SNES controller to USB converter ($15)
- Paint & Primer ($20)
- 10x Cherry microswitches ($8)
- Hot glue gun ($18)
- Zotac ION Mini ITX Mobo ($190)
- Blue LED ($2)
- HDMI 90 deg adapter ($5)
- 60GB Kingston SSD ($72)

Running Total: $426
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Old 13th March 2013, 10:52 PM   #2
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I received a couple of SNES consoles from a mate today, officially starting the project.



Like mentioned earlier, I'll be using the NTSC model - Looks a bit roomier and should be an 'easy' first project.



I'll be using the original controllers primarily - I'll use a SNES controller -> USB converter to manage the front ports. Some lovely yellow action going on there.



I'll hide (space providing) extra USB ports under the cart loader flap:



The rig will sport HDMI out...



Hopefully tomorrow I'll get around to gutting it...
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Old 14th March 2013, 8:47 AM   #3
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Looks like a cool project

This might help with the yellowing: http://www.exisle.net/mb/index.php?/...ent-after-all/

Also i don't think there are any worthwhile xbox emulators so you probably wont get xbox stuff running on it.
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Old 14th March 2013, 9:30 AM   #4
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Looks like a cool project

This might help with the yellowing: http://www.exisle.net/mb/index.php?/...ent-after-all/

Also i don't think there are any worthwhile xbox emulators so you probably wont get xbox stuff running on it.
Thanks for the link - Looks pretty promising . When I separate the chassis I'll look in to getting some peroxide. I'll hopefully get the chance to bathe the bottom half of the case this weekend to try and get some of the yellow out...
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Old 14th March 2013, 10:04 AM   #5
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look in to pico-psu's for your power supply if you haven't already. They're what a lot of people use for these builds as they allow you to have the power brick external to the unit. They go up to 150w now I think but they're not cheap.
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Old 14th March 2013, 10:26 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Narcoticx2 View Post
look in to pico-psu's for your power supply if you haven't already. They're what a lot of people use for these builds as they allow you to have the power brick external to the unit. They go up to 150w now I think but they're not cheap.
Thanks for that, they look awesome! They'd be perfect for a project like this. I do currently have my eye on the Zotac board for this one, and it has onboard power, but if I end up going with any other board I'd definitely be chasing one of those.
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Old 14th March 2013, 12:56 PM   #7
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Thanks for that, they look awesome! They'd be perfect for a project like this. I do currently have my eye on the Zotac board for this one, and it has onboard power, but if I end up going with any other board I'd definitely be chasing one of those.
Looks alright. The problem I always found with those Zotac boards is that they're so damn expensive for what they are (I can't even find where to buy that one in Aus?). You can spend the same on a bunch of other stuff and come out on top.

If it were me, I'd be going down the Intel HD4000 track - I think it's actually quicker than the 9400m on the zotac, and you can get very cheap s1155 boards floating around.

I'd go for something like this...
- i3 3225 with HD4000 graphics $139 (55w tdp)
- asrock h61m-itx board $75
- 8GB kit of ram $59
- pico-psu $68 for the 150w one, you'll need a power brick to do the heavy lifting though, and you can probably get away with a 90w brick given the rest of the system
- probably $30 or so shipping

Then you just need to worry about case and hard drives.

Reason I don't like the FM2 platforms is they suck so much power, and while they can be done under 150w and gpu performance will indeed be better, the last thing you want is loud fans/lots of heat, especially when the HD4000 should do the trick.
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Old 14th March 2013, 1:45 PM   #8
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You could also source a 1st gen Xbox 360 PSU. 203W, silent and you get 12v, 5v output from the pins.

In keeping with the whole console thing.

http://forums.benheck.com/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=26244

Please note, the picture I linked is showing the input for an XBOX 360. So if you are going to use the cable it's a mirrored image.

Last edited by Exige; 14th March 2013 at 1:57 PM.
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Old 14th March 2013, 2:16 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Narcoticx2 View Post
Looks alright. The problem I always found with those Zotac boards is that they're so damn expensive for what they are (I can't even find where to buy that one in Aus?). You can spend the same on a bunch of other stuff and come out on top.

If it were me, I'd be going down the Intel HD4000 track - I think it's actually quicker than the 9400m on the zotac, and you can get very cheap s1155 boards floating around.

I'd go for something like this...
- i3 3225 with HD4000 graphics $139 (55w tdp)
- asrock h61m-itx board $75
- 8GB kit of ram $59
- pico-psu $68 for the 150w one, you'll need a power brick to do the heavy lifting though, and you can probably get away with a 90w brick given the rest of the system
- probably $30 or so shipping

Then you just need to worry about case and hard drives.

Reason I don't like the FM2 platforms is they suck so much power, and while they can be done under 150w and gpu performance will indeed be better, the last thing you want is loud fans/lots of heat, especially when the HD4000 should do the trick.
Umart sells the zotac board for $180ish and has the board and CPU in one, so it's a little cheaper which is a big point at this stage. Granted it only supports ddr2 ram and up to 4gb, but I feel this is ample for most emulators. It also comes with the psu so I save a bit of hassle there too.

Everything I've heard on the fm2 systems so far is nightmarish problems regarding heat.. So I'm avoiding that due to the chassis I'm using.

Hard drives will be interesting. I'd like 2tb of space so I might have to see if I can squeeze 3 2.5" drives in there...
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Old 14th March 2013, 2:20 PM   #10
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Considered using a small boot drive inside and using USB for your games ?

If I remember correctly the entire SNES library isn't any larger than 10gb anyway. Those USB drives can become your 'cartridges'.
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Old 14th March 2013, 2:23 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Exige View Post
You could also source a 1st gen Xbox 360 PSU. 203W, silent and you get 12v, 5v output from the pins.

In keeping with the whole console thing.

http://forums.benheck.com/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=26244

Please note, the picture I linked is showing the input for an XBOX 360. So if you are going to use the cable it's a mirrored image.
That's pretty handy. I've got a mate that's offered a free buggered xbox360, so if I end up with using another board like Narcoticx2 mentioned I could attempt to use the 360's psu as I'm sure it's quite tiny..
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Old 14th March 2013, 2:28 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by perrymitchell View Post
Umart sells the zotac board for $180ish and has the board and CPU in one, so it's a little cheaper which is a big point at this stage. Granted it only supports ddr2 ram and up to 4gb, but I feel this is ample for most emulators. It also comes with the psu so I save a bit of hassle there too.

Everything I've heard on the fm2 systems so far is nightmarish problems regarding heat.. So I'm avoiding that due to the chassis I'm using.

Hard drives will be interesting. I'd like 2tb of space so I might have to see if I can squeeze 3 2.5" drives in there...
No worries - I'm just wary of the atom processor "generally' being slow but that's a personal decision.

Regarding your 2.5" drives, you're not going to need mountains of space. I'd consider trying to find a few 1TB drives rather than the 2TB's mainly due to cost but also availability.
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Old 14th March 2013, 3:34 PM   #13
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No worries - I'm just wary of the atom processor "generally' being slow but that's a personal decision.

Regarding your 2.5" drives, you're not going to need mountains of space. I'd consider trying to find a few 1TB drives rather than the 2TB's mainly due to cost but also availability.
Hmm, it's a dual-core 1.6GHz atom.. But I've never used one before, so I guess I'll see. I'll probably just dial back the number of emulators I try to run depending on the performance. One thing I'm worried about is the hyperspin menu.. As I've seen it's a bit graphic intensive, I'm curious as to whether it'll chug or not. I can disable the opening "video" and be happy with it providing the wheel responsiveness is good.

I have a feeling I'm going to be pressed for space regarding the HDDs. I'd like (ideally) 3 drives: 1x 30gb SSD and 2x 1TB spindles, but after you add up the space that their caddies take up there's a lot of space wasted. Anyone know of any decent case-less SSDs for sale? I know there are alternative SSD designs (something like that runs on these) but I'm hoping to get it as cheap as I can.
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Old 14th March 2013, 3:43 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Exige View Post
Considered using a small boot drive inside and using USB for your games ?

If I remember correctly the entire SNES library isn't any larger than 10gb anyway. Those USB drives can become your 'cartridges'.
I have had that thought, but I really don't want to go through all that configuration (if even possible) for hyperspin to recognise romsets that are loaded separately. I'd like it to be an all-encompassing system.

I did speak with a mate (somewhat jokingly, I think) about the idea of actually turning some carts into external drives, wired to the original cart pins. Then wiring up the slot in the SNES to say a SATA interface. Obviously I haven't speculated *at all* as to the possibility of doing this, but it'd be a pretty nifty setup.

But again, I'd like as little to carry around with it as possible.. So I'm going to jam all of it inside that tiny case...

On another note, I currently don't have access to a screwdriver for the SNES, so I'm going to have to wait for one to be delivered
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Old 14th March 2013, 4:47 PM   #15
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I have had that thought, but I really don't want to go through all that configuration (if even possible) for hyperspin to recognise romsets that are loaded separately. I'd like it to be an all-encompassing system.

I did speak with a mate (somewhat jokingly, I think) about the idea of actually turning some carts into external drives, wired to the original cart pins. Then wiring up the slot in the SNES to say a SATA interface. Obviously I haven't speculated *at all* as to the possibility of doing this, but it'd be a pretty nifty setup.

But again, I'd like as little to carry around with it as possible.. So I'm going to jam all of it inside that tiny case...

On another note, I currently don't have access to a screwdriver for the SNES, so I'm going to have to wait for one to be delivered
The good old Nintendo tri-screw !

It's a case of how retro you want to go, versus how nice and easy you'd like to be.

Is it going to be an MAME unit as well ? Otherwise I reckon you could get away with a 2 TB 2.5 inch drive for almost every emulator in existence.

Last edited by Exige; 14th March 2013 at 4:50 PM.
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