Build Your Own Home Entertainment System and Retro Gaming Console for $60

The NES Classic Edition is a highly sought after product this holiday shopping season, and so many of these have been sold that they are out of stock everywhere. I called multiple stores looking for an NES Classic Edition, and none of them had any in stock for weeks after the launch. The NES was a part of my childhood, and had some of the best, most challenging 2D games. Of course nostalgia is part of retro gaming, but there is something about classic games that made them much more challenging. A lot of the time, I find that retro games are simply better than modern games that I paid $59.99 for, including money spent upgrading my PC. So many games today charge additionally for DLC (downloadable content) such as custom characters, levels, etc. I want to get away from all of that, and get back to old school games. The Raspberry Pi 3 can literally have thousands of games on a small portable device no larger than your smart phone! The Raspberry Pi 3 is a small computer designed to be inexpensive and fast, and it has so much potential to be more than a basic computer. The quad core processor and graphics chip give this small computer a unique ability to have an operating system that allows you basic web browsing, word processing, and can also play all sorts of classic videogames and high quality videos. Some of the game consoles that you can emulate include: Playstation, Sega Genesis, NES, Super Nintendo, Sega Saturn, and many more. In addition to retro gaming, it can provide you several options for entertainment, such as 1080p movies and live streaming television. If you are looking for an inexpensive gift for someone you know that likes videogames, technology, and movies. look no further than the RPi3. In this post, I will show you how to build one for yourself. It is a much better alternative than spending the same amount of money on an NES Classic Edition, which can only play 1/20 the amount of games that I currently have on my RPi3. Don’t waste your money on the NES Classic Edition. Build one of these, you will be much happier and feel a lot more accomplished knowing that you created it yourself!

  1. Buy the parts onlineI recommend Amazon, because it’s easier to ship everything from the same site. The Raspberry Pi 3 uses HDMI for video and audio, as well as a 3.5mm jack for headphones/surround sound.Raspberry Pi 3 Model B Motherboard – This hardware is constantly being upgraded, and it’s only $37.99, so if you ever want to improve the speed, you can but the next generation RPi4 for cheap.SanDisk Ultra 32GB microSDHC UHS-I Card with Adapter – I recommend sticking with 32GB, because the card has to be formatted differently for anything larger than 32GB. It complicates installs.

    CanaKit 5V 2.5A Raspberry Pi 3 Power Supply / Adapter / Charger – You probably want to use the power supply provided, instead of an android phone charger, because the voltage could be different.

    SB Components Clear Case for Raspberry Pi 3 Model B Quad Core/Pi 2 Model B/Pi Model B+ Case – I decided to go with an aluminum case for aesthetic reasons, and also because heatsinks are provided to ensure the computer is kept cool, even though overheating is really not a problem. The clear case is slightly cheaper, so I linked it.

    optional: 8BITDO FC30 Pro Wireless Bluetooth Controller Dual Classic Joystick For Android Gamepad PC

     

  2. Assemble the partsThe motherboard install is surprisingly easy. It fits perfectly onto the case, as indicated in the instruction manual. A screwdriver is provided, and very small screws. To hook up the RPi3 to your monitor or television, you will need an HDMI cable. The RPi3 can output audio via HDMI or aux cord, so there are multiple options, depending what you are doing with it.20161203_134148
  3. Install the OS
    You need to install Retro Pie for emulating arcade games and KODI for streaming TV and movies. If you want to install the Linux Ubuntu operating system Raspbian, which is similar to Mac OS or Windows, download the file from raspbian.org, and follow the instructions for installing via SD card. The entire process is relatively simple, that even the most inexperienced person can understand.
  4. Attach a controller
    You will need a controller if you want to play videogames, or if you want to control TV shows and movies.How to connect bluetooth to an 8Bitdo controller 
  5. Download ROMs Search on Google for ROMs for the consoles you want to play. I was able to find a ROM for every game I own on Playstation, so everything is perfectly 100% legal.

I hope this guide was helpful for you. If you need any additional help, everything you need is on YouTube! Also, check the subreddit: https://www.reddit.com/r/raspberry_pi/

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UNT Eagle Strategies

Class members of the social media class in the Mayborn School of Journalism