Picodore – C64 DTV palmtop


[Jason] sent in this nice palmtop C64 (cache) project based on a PSone screen. Notable hacks: PIC 16F88 to encode rs-232 to PS/2 keyboard output, Atari keychain joystick and a SD card slot (not functioning yet). The case was made of wood and laminated over with contact paper.

Comments

  1. Forrest says:

    First post.

  2. wolf says:

    with the exception of the speaker holes, the construction is perfect, if it werent for those, it’d be practically indestinguishable from stainless steel,

    good job

  3. Severedbrain says:

    Wow, the second article in a row with ~242 bytes of wasted “FP” bandwidth per computer. Is it just me or does anyone else get excited to see that a great idea has been commented on only to be emotionally crushed when greeted by a less than useful “FP”?

    Quick question, did the C64 (and C128) just use PS/2 for the keyboard interface or just the mini newer mini-C64’s? I’ve been trying to figure that out for a while.

    -Severedbrain

  4. Maybe this construction method will catch on. I got the stainless steel contact paper at a local big-box hardware store for a few bucks. Looks great and is fairly durable. To get nice clean egdes, I removed the backing from an oversized piece, stuck it on the surface and then I used an X-Acto knife to cut off
    the excess by running the blade along the edge.

  5. tom61 says:

    Awesome project! Nice hacking going on there. The mini joystick is a nice touch. RS-232 to PS/2 is something I hadn’t considered recently, but could use in a project of mine.

    Severedbrain: only the new mini “DTV” C64s have a keyboard port. Rather pointless to have a keyboard port on a computer that is /in/ a keyboard. Additionally, the IBM AT hadn’t been released yet, which introduces the keyboard protocol PS/2 keyboards use. So, even if it did have a keyboard port, it wouldn’t be ps/2 compatable.

  6. Jason says:

    there are more pictures on his blog.

    http://www.picobay.com/projects/index.html

  7. bodiby says:

    This looks great. Reminds of Ben Heck with the attention to detail. Is this his first hack? If so, extra props!!

  8. MRE says:

    I seriously think hack a day should auto-flood the required email address with giant banner images that read “Congratu-effin-lations! You were the first poster on H.A.D. your parents must be proud of you!” To every one that simply says ‘first post’

  9. Sonderling-Meister says:

    i aggree. don’t post if all you have to say is “first post.”

  10. Yorgle says:

    Severedbrain: the C=64 and C=128 had matrix-scan integrated keyboards. It was only the new C=64-based devices (like the hummer, or the joystick) that have PS2 capability.

    The C=128D had a detached keyboard, but i’m not sure what signalling/pinout it used… but i’m pretty sure it wasn’t PS/2, since the 128D came out in 1986, while the IBM PS/2 came out in 1987.

  11. akmixdown says:

    wow I have to say I *really* like the construction of this project. My own hacks are often just modified boards or modified firmware; I’ve always been very poor at the “artsy” side of things, and using wood always looked “cheap”. I’d never thought of gluing contact paper on to give it a metallic look. Wow!

  12. CDE says:

    The rs-232 to ps/2 is great. I have a bunch of palm v keyboards that use that, and I have yet to find a way to convert it from 232 to ps/2 or usb. I’ve seen rs232 to newton serial which send me in the right direction, but this is like giving it to me. Now all I need to do is add this to a usb pic and make it show up as a usb hid keyboard. I’ll have a nice little pocket foldup keyboard for some headless servers (along with a ps2 lcd screen)

  13. Severedbrain says:

    Thanks for the tips, I did some further idgging on my own and found more info. Apparently the C128/C128D keyboard are nearly identical to the C64 keyboard except with some additional scan-codes added in software. In that vein, I wonder if the matrix-keyboard to ps/2 conversion done in the newer devices is done via a hardware interface (I’d love to liberate that for personal use) or in software on the Black-Blob.

    -Severedbrain

  14. markie says:

    Cool! I’m just about to attach a PS one display to a golden oldie C64 in my attempt on the earlier Prophet64 project posted here.

    http://www.hackaday.com/2006/10/03/c64-alpha-mod/

    Not in a long run will it be as small as this nice picodore C64, but a whole lot more portable than having to carry some CRT-monitor around :-)

  15. gert says:

    Did you see his other project?… he made a game controller that reads your mind, literally!

    http://www.picobay.com/projects/2006/05/controlling-video-game-with-brain.html

    Maybe that should be tomorrow’s hack

  16. NICK says:

    That is amazing, and deserves a round of applause *claps for a few seconds*.

  17. MATTHEW DURLAC says:

    HI is your Picodore 64 going into business on the market, if you get enough demands, for example, or if not could you make me one for a good (enough)price?
    I thought I would like it the instant I read your article in RETRO GAMER page 99 (issue 35). Please see if I can possibly own one, if I like it after you give me some more details say, what can you still do with it like you could do with a commodore 64. Or is the screen 5 inch’s across including or without the diplay game window, I think you get my gist… I hope you get enough demands to be able to sell your own, do you have a factory where you can contruct copies? Yours hopefully, Matthew Durlac

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