Analogue Pocket - FPGA GameBoy/GBA/GameGear/Lynx/NGP/etc

Discussion in 'Retro & Arcade' started by elvis, Oct 17, 2019.

  1. elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    Analogue, makers of several high quality FPGA console, have announced their new portable (and dockable) product called the Analogue Pocket:

    https://www.analogue.co/pocket/

    Advertised console compatibility:

    "Pocket is compatible with the 2,780+ Game Boy, Game Boy Color & Game Boy Advance game cartridge library. Pocket works with cartridge adapters for other handheld systems, too. Like Game Gear. Neo Geo Pocket Color. Atari Lynx & more."

    Features:

    * 3.5”, 615 ppi, backlit LTPS LCD, 1600x1440 resolution
    * USB C charging Li-Ion battery
    * Remappable controls
    * 3.5mm analogue stereo headphone jack
    * Dock for connection to HDTV and wireless controllers
    * 2x FPGA chips - one for simulation, one for custom use by developers
    * "Nanoloop" mixer / digital audio workstation for music creation



    Advertised to be shipping in "2020" for USD$199.

    Previous consoles by the company:
    * Analogue Nt (NES clone)
    * Analogue Super Nt (SNES clone)
    * Analogue Mega Sg (MegaDrive / Genesis clone)

    Press:
    https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2019...ises-fpga-accuracy-for-portable-retro-gaming/
    https://www.theverge.com/circuitbre...e-pocket-game-boy-handheld-release-date-price
    https://www.eurogamer.net/articles/...et-an-all-new-all-encompassing-retro-handheld
    https://au.ign.com/articles/2019/10...ll-play-all-game-boy-games-ever?sf110721670=1

    analogue_pocket.jpg
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2019
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  2. power

    power Member

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    yeah they did, when Spawn Wave got onto the portable a day or so ago i thought this could be something cool - then the announced device blew my mind.

    I just don't know how to process the existence of this thing.
     
  3. OP
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    elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    Analogue kind of gave it away on twitter with their "green and black" hints all over the place. What surprised me more was the straight up "support all the portables out of the box" day one announcement, rather than waiting for jailbreak/custom firmware at a later date. That was nice.

    I'm interested to see reviews on the screen once real hardware is in people's hands. I'm a bit of a stickler for video standards, and the sheer variety and weirdness out there with Japanese portables is quite maddening. I'm keen to see how Analogue/Kevtris deal with not only the resolutions and scaling, but the bigger thing everyone misses - colour temperature and saturation of different consoles.
     
  4. power

    power Member

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    my biggest gripe is form factor, i prefer horizontal devices - but i predict that this started as a gameboy and got out of control (in a good way).
     
  5. OP
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    elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    Ditto. Broke both thumbs as a stupid drunk teenager, and the smaller width of some handhelds causes me great discomfort. Lynx and first gen GBA are my favourites.

    Would have been nice for Analogue to offer two form factors, but I get that it means redesigning things and adding cost.

    What makes me happiest about this console, however, is that the world can finally have a decent way to play Mother 3 (the music timing game mechanic doesn't work on emulators).
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2019
  6. Pierre32

    Pierre32 New Member

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    It looks magnificent. Regarding game resolution (I'm a stickler too) I guess the crazy 1600x1440 of this thing allows for a good range of integer scaling options.
     
  7. OP
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    elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    Yeah, it's going to allow a lot of cool effects as well as pixel-perfect modes. So whether you want pixel-perfect modes or whether you want nice effects to simulate the old consoles, there's a solution for everyone.

    Here's a dirty photo I took of the Mana Collection running on Switch (straight off the Switch's LCD in handheld mode). The GameBoy filter they offer was pretty convincing, even at crummy 720p.

    mana_gb.jpg
     
  8. flain

    flain Member

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    There goes $199 USD + whatever the crazy shipping will be from my bank account...

    I would prefer a GBA style layout (as others have mentioned adult hands and all..) buuut i don't think that's going to stop me on this one.

    It'll be interesting to see if anyone makes use of the DEV FPGA in it. With the HDMI doc it has i can see the value playing other cores on the TV like a MiSTer.
     
  9. OP
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    elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    I too wonder if this will attract people to it. In theory, cores could be ported back and forth between MiSTer and this, so hopefully it's good for everyone.

    MiSTer is missing a working GBA core at this point. It's probably second highest on my want list for the system, just behind optical disc emulation.

    But at this point, the Analogue Pocket will probably be the cheapest way to get low latency GBA on the big screen (given how much a GBA consolizer costs in dollars and effort).
     
  10. power

    power Member

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    unlike the MD and SNES machines this one actually is a bit tempting, combined with a flash cart for each system it should be cool.
     
  11. Pierre32

    Pierre32 New Member

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    That does look lovely!
     
  12. Sir Didymus

    Sir Didymus Member

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    Dream scenario. Cores for the 16 and 8 bit consoles get ported and a jailbreak allows loading roms from the SD card. Combined with the dock you've got the ultimate retro console.
     
  13. power

    power Member

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    the device really does have a lot of potential. as soon as i heard the lineup and capabilities my senses started tingling big time.
     
  14. OP
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    elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    Certainly is a great option. MiSTer is great too, although has it's shortfalls (no GBA, not easily converted to portable, a bit clunky to use). Upside is it does things that Analogue can't (Neo Geo, and a tonne of 8/16bit computers, for example).

    Mainstream FPGA is just beginning. It's going to keep this hobby going for a long time, and the more of it out there, the better.
     
  15. dexster

    dexster Member

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    i am just not into handheld gaming that much to justify the asking price ;
    then add on the analogue tax for australians and it becomes a definite no.
     
  16. flain

    flain Member

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    I owned an Atari Lynx, and spent many many hours playing it (usually on the couch right next to a powerpoint..). It took like 6 AA batteries for 1-2hrs of play. I also owned a GBA, which i used to play everyday on my 1.5hr train commute to my shitty job back in the day, it had the worst screen id ever experienced from a nintendo product...

    This new analogue handheld basically took my money when they announced it :/
     
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  17. OP
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    elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    There's a reason I play GBA games on a DS Lite. :)
     
  18. Vanne

    Vanne Member

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    horizontal for me too, but nice to see this new device. :)
     

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