game grrl: portable nintendo entertainment system

gamegrrl: portable nes

you may have seen a ‘76000 in 1′ (pirated-nintendo-in-a-joystick) for sale at a kiosk in your local strip mall.  though it probably has 50-100 nes roms at best, it’s great retro fun in a small, cheap package


  1. bensyverson says:

    Woah. That’s rad. I wonder what other projects that LCD screen will make its way into…

  2. chuckfucter says:

    nice job. its also good to see girls doin cool stuff.

  3. comcipher says:

    Definatly awesome. I might have to try this one out.

  4. unangst says:

    Could this all fit into an old gameboy case? Then you have a legitimate case and what the author calls “place the case top and kinda push around the buttons until they are in the right place”.

  5. strider_mt2k says:

    You GO Game Girl!

    I have to agree, squeezing this into an original Game Boy would be the ultimate, but you’ve got something original there no matter what.

    Incredibly clever!

  6. loup says:

    I have been very slowly playing around with doing this already (based off of ladyada’s instructions) and yes, it should fit inside an original gameboy case, you would have to make some alterations to the case to do it but would it be as much fun if you didn’t? The screen in this thing is basically just a small TV with no tuner card (I think,) I had also kind of been playing around with the idea of adding additional video-in/video-out to the thing so you could still plug it into a tv if you wanted or even plug other things into it. I was even thinking a little about adding a TV tuner to it. Of course I could simply be crazy and attempting any of this could make the whole thing not work.

  7. Scott says:

    hmm, dunno which came first, this or the portable NES over at, but Ben Heck has a ton of different portables he’s made, along with a book published about making portables out of systems.

    its a really cool site, check out his portables, go to and click video games on the left menu, then click portable units.

  8. fabre says:

    Ben Heck has been doing this for 5-6 years now. He’s a lot more experienced with it than this person, and he’s made everything from portable Atari 2600s (one of which was his first project) to a portable PS2. Most of his cases are professionally manufactured using a CNC machine.

  9. Scott says:

    yeah, he’s really skilled. i just read the article for the game grrl and saw that it doesn’t have a cartridge slot, ben’s portables all have slots.

  10. ladyada says:

    this project is not meant to ‘replace’ the many many other portables projects. its just another approach: much cheaper, modifying an inexpensive case means no CNC-cut pieces & with battery compartment, uses built-in games so that its smaller (to be honest, i dont expect most teenagers to own any NES carts anymore being that they’re almost 20 years old at this point), etc.

    i was tempted to make a cart version at some point (basically, dont desolder the cart connector, and find a suitable case) but have been utterly overwhelmed with other projects…

  11. Casual Observer says:

    It’s not about who did more of what-hello?
    It’s about this person being very smart and doing a cool hack.

    Don’t compare, just dare and share!

  12. jbdigriz says:

    I agree. This is a very cool project, and I’m more likely to do this than to have a new case for my PS2 CNC milled.

    I don’t care that there is no slot for cartridges, or how long ladyada has been doing this. She’s obviously doing much more advanced stuff than I am, so who am I to complain that it doesn’t have a certain feature?

    I’d say if someone can take the time to complain that it’s missing something, they should take the time to add those features instead of trying to point out how much better someone else’s projects are.

    Kudos to you, ladyada! I look forward to your next hack.

  13. Ryan says:

    you’d want to use white LED’s to conserve battery life, CCFL’s aren’t as efficient

  14. Scott says:

    I wasn’t trying to put anyone down, I was just mentioning another source for a similar project, and for me, I personally care more for the cartridge slot, because I have a ton of NES games.

  15. Mogwai says:

    I am just guessing here but could you also replace the memory on this with memory of your own that would store more roms than the 50 or so the original unit came with? I imagine you would need a flash programmer to do this but I do not see why that would be overly difficult either. If I am mistake please correct me, as I may try to do this at some point. BTW, Good Job Ladyada!

  16. Paul says:

    Brilliant. I have one of these all-in-one systems, and haven’t used it much. Perhaps a new venue for playing it will allow me to finally get around to finishing Super Mario Bros (21 years over-due).

  17. yeap…neat hack

  18. matt says:

    Are there any more detailed instructions for this? I’m not that experienced with electronics hacks, so I was wondering if anyone wrote a guide that makes this easier.

  19. bazz says:

    I might do the mod after my current mod, but no guarentees because I am grounded, heheh. If I do happen to do it though I will try to submit very detailed pics of pin connections and such. I’m sorry I can make guarentees yet, but perhaps someone will beat me to the punch. The wait on me is at least a month as I am filled with a lot of school work. Maybe this is a pointless post, maybe not. ^_^

  20. chad says:

    what the hell is good about that

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