Q&A

Got any modding questions or feedback to the site? I’ll answer if I can.

84 thoughts on “”

  • September 22, 2015 at 6:36 pm

    Permalink

    I recently came across all my n64 games from when i was younger. Would love to get a portable n64 to give to my son for either a christmas present or a birthday gift. He birthday is on march 24. Would love if you could make one for me. I’m not that crafty and making things and would love to have one of these for him. I grew up playing n64, i would love to him do the same. Can you please help me?

    I will make some over the next several months and post brief progress photos on this site, along with a video when done. The type of casing i’ll be using will be different from the normal. I have made various systems as commissions in the past, each time I make cases differently to take into account new methods I develop.

    The cost for selling portables are in the order of £350-£400 plus postage. The reason is not so much the parts but the considerable time it takes to make a system. If you are interested, feel free to let me know, and what country you are in as that will determine if the system is PAL or NTSC. I can make the first in that format, so if you like it, you could have first refusal.Hello,
    I have for quite a while been interested in a portable N64 but I don’t have the skills required to make on. I would be very interested in buying one from you when ever you have one available.Excellent. I will be making some and posting them here. As I have now paid for 5x the Hosting space on this site, when I make a portable I will post progress as it is being made, then upload final video. During the making of the system in question, I will invite readers to contact me to secure a commission. Keep a tab on the website for developments.

    Hi!
    I’ve been trying to get in touch with u for quite a while..
    I really hope u get this!
    I’m a huge fan of your work and the N64..
    I’m trying to make a portable by using your tutorial but I wanted to ask u if there was chance u could sell me a case kit and maybe some of that wire u use for all the soldering since I haven’t been able to find wire as flexible as the one u use..
    I live in NJ United state!!
    Will be waiting for your reply..
    Thanks for your page Bacteria!!!

    Yes, message received fine! I have not sold any case kits for some years, it is better frankly for a modder to make their own anyway as how one makes the internals to a system and their positioning determines the size and look of a case. As to wiring, it doesn’t matter what wire you use for cart relocation as long as it is flexible and not single core wire. I am sure stores like Radioshack do that, if not, if you have old controller cable, open those up and use that, works great.

    So,just to comfirm..
    Not gonna Sell me a case kit?

    I don’t have any. There are guides here though to show how to make your own, easily and cheaply – look in the General Modding section including the Frankencase modding guide.

    Hey I have a question on the dimensions of your case I think I might get one 3d printed so I was wondering if you could email the design if it’s ok with you

    There is not a standard size for a system as it all depends on how much you trim a motherboard, components used, how they are stacked, type of controller (some are larger than others), placement of batteries, if prefer larger but flatter or smaller and fatter, etc. The only way to know the size is to work out what you need for your system.

    Ok cool thanks I’ll try a comparison when I get all my parts to see

    Good, case making does not have to be difficult, look at my “Frankencasing” guides.

    I think I’m gunna try the Tupperware case it looks fairly simple and cost effective

    Yes, cost effective as no waste however if you have a case, from a toy, or whatever that is about the right size and has the two halves that screw together, then that is a good situation to frankencase.

    Also with the step down regulator what do the bottom numbers mean or are they not relevant and the charger I’m trying to figure out how to make the plug in

    On the step down regulators in the reference section, you only need to use “V+ in” (voltage in), “V- in” (ground) and “V- out” for the reduced voltage out. A step down regulator isn’t relevant to a charger as the charger will charge batteries (via their circuits) whereas a step down regulator decreases voltage whilst keeping good amperage.

    Hey Bac! Good to see you’re active on modding still. I like the new layout of the site that you did. I was wondering if you have ever used a wireless A/V transmitter that could transport video and audio from a GameCube to handheld. I’ve found some online but been looking for one that someone has used successfully.

    It won’t transmit video that I am aware of, and if did there would be lag, however the GameCube has the Wavebird controllers which are wireless; used those in the past and they are excellent controllers.

    I enjoy modding, which is why i’m still going; one of the few who still is I think; the scene dived but that’s due to smartphones and people changing interests.

    hey i don’t know if my earlier message got sent to you :) i saw the other comments but just wanted to add my own, Would be selling any of these in the near future? i have money in hand for a Into64 as this would be an amazing present for myself. I love portable gaming and emulators however have no experience in making these…. i have no tools or workshop to perform what you have made…. i have watched all 20 videos and its truly inspiring to see what you do…. Thanks for the feedback and i hope to come here soon and see some units for sale!

    When I make a small amount of portables for sale they will look entirely different to the iNto64. I will maintain a worklog here, when make them.

    Okay, so I have a couple of questions related to getting Everdrive 64 working on the handheld. First of all, Can I use my Everdrive 64 v2.0 for the handheld? As in, will the batteries power it enough? Second of all, Can I use Lithium Ion AA batteries for the handheld? If so, how many minutes/hours is there? And third of all, I want to play 64DD games on the Everdrive. Does that use the entire N64 power supply (12 volts) or does it use the normal 3 since it is a modified ROM? Thank you.

    Yes, Everdrive works the same as any other cartridge. You can use Lithium batteries in a portable, yes, however you must have a battery protection circuit as well as charging facilities. You can use 64DD games on an Everdrive v3 if you have used a different flash, as on the Krikzz forum.

    Hi Bacman, I’m working on an N64p, and I am trying to come up with a circuit that will allow me to play while charging the batteries. Most of the resources online are either so far out of date that the pictures no longer exist on the internet. This diagram you posted here (http://bacman.co.uk/battery-wiring-diagram/) refers to a step-up regulator and battery charge circuit, which aren’t referred to anywhere else on the site, and it looks like there’s no way to turn the system off while charging via that method (A second SPST switch in series downstream should work for that, I suppose) . Could I ask for a little more information on this topic?
    Thank you,
    Meiresthai

    That diagram allows to play via mains and charge the batteries at the same time, as a SPST switch will either run the system off batteries or mains but not both, however you can run off the mains with that diagram and charge batteries at the same time as the batteries are not powering the console at the same time.

    Good to see you’re back. :)

    Quick question: When wiring two battery packs together, should I keep the protection circuit for both of them? I noticed you did this in your N64 build log, so I was wondering if it was necessary or just easier.

    I hadn’t gone anywhere, still here. Made this site the best it has ever been though.

    Regards your question, you only need one protection circuit when wiring the battery packs in parallel as the voltage remains the same, I was being over cautious at the time using two.

    Hello there Bacman! I came to this site through someone on youtube who made a video on a multi-console emulator, crafted out of an Atari Lynx II. I was wondering if you can make these sort of things, and if not the supplies and money it would take to make one. Thankyou so much, and I love the work you do!

    Thanks for the comments. I’m only interested in systems with original hardware not emulation. He probably used a Pi which are small boards.

    Hi bacman i have a question and i hope you can help me,I’m making a snes portable and I’m using a snes mini and the problem i have is the I’m not getting any picture on my screen do you think is because the wires are to long,they are 6 inches long
    Everything else seems to work fine

    More likely you haven’t connected ground from console to screen.

    i do have the ground connected to the console and every time i turning on the screen goes black and it seems like is going to work but nothing happens

    Have you connected ground from console to the screen’s ground, as suggested before? Otherwise has your system got enough amps to work?

    Can you explain to me exactly how to put an N64 controller into a game cartridge? I came across your video on youtube and have been wanting to do the project myself for awhile now. I can’t find any information on it on the web. Thank you!

    It can be done by using a PSP / 3DS type joystick and contact pads to connect controller board into place. Result isn’t worth it though as the end controller is not as great to hold. I didn’t do the mod you refer to, a guy called Bungee did.

    I saw your video on converting an Nintendo controller to work with Colecovision . Do you have any instructions on this project. I would love to see how it’s done . Thank you

    When I install ColecoVision into my Unity project I will make a pinout and guide on the controller.

    I see you get many requests on portable n64s and I myself am also interested. I would love to get into building one but i do not have the time due to being active duty military however I stumbled across a comment stating that you require a 50% non refundable deposit which I am willing to place. Please get back to me, I am a huge fan of your work.

    Great! I have ordered what I believe will be a good casing to use for making these systems, when it arrives I can confirm that. When it does, I will post on this site photos of what I have in mind and also progress for the build. That way, I could take a few orders and make the systems the same. I will be starting the first build with the new casing early January…

    Thank you very much for the fast feedback I’ll be checking the website for updates!

    I’m interested in a n64 portable!!
    Please Let us know when u are working on one!!
    Are u taking orders??
    Or how does it work?

    Reply
    bacteria
    bacteriaPost author
    December 28, 2015 at 12:30 am
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    Yes. I am in the process of making an N64 with new casing. The casing is completed and the innards partially completed – enough for me to present the system so people can see what it looks like so can order if they wish too. Progress has been quicker than predicted, I have taken the photos I just need to work out the pricing and pricing options and will then post to invite people to proceed with a commission. This will be in the next days…

    I will then continue the build to complete the first commission system.

    Reply

    Osaze McCurley
    December 21, 2015 at 7:28 am
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    I was wondering, I’m just 15 and seeing awesome stuff like this really gets me pumped up. I was wanting to know what your going to take on next and when you next YouTube video will be out. I am SO excited to see what you come up with next and hope to get into this kind of stuff myself pretty soon!

    Good to hear! I don’t tend to make many videos. Going to wait until Unity system is completed before make a video on that next, made Unity work for 6 console systems so far and about 6 more to go. My next video though will be for the first of the new batch of N64 portables for sale, the first will be completed in January

    Hey how far has your latest UNITY system come along? Are you planning to add even more systems than the first UNITY system or no? Also are you ever planning to sell the old UNITY system after you complete the new one? By the way I’m not interested in buying the console I was just wondering.

    The old Project Unity system was broken up for parts for the new Unity system, at least what I could salvage. The new Unity system is far better and far more reliable. The Unity system at the moment has 6 systems made for it, about 6 more to go.

    Awesome! I CANNOT wait for the console to be finished!!! Also I just noticed the HUGE time gap between the time for me and the time when the comments say they were posted. For example, it’s 3:26 PM for me… Wow. Anyway thank you for the information! Again can’t wait to see what comes next!

    Reply
    bacteria
    bacteriaPost author
    December 22, 2015 at 11:00 pm
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    Comments get manually approved, and if approved the sender gets an email to advise that and if reply.

    Handheld consoles are bulky and fairly heavy so I have gone for the new design which is more rugged and in my view far more attractive. Also more durable and easier to play on too. I am not looking at doing the old style systems.

    Reply

    Ubaldo Arrellaga
    December 31, 2015 at 6:31 pm
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    im crazy about having a n64 portable but I want one of your old designs!!
    like the into..
    If u don’t want to make em like that anymore would u please just sell me a case kit and ill try to put one together?
    im a huge fan of ur work..
    and ever since I saw those first portables u builded I fell in love with them..
    I’m from USA NEW Jersey

    As stated before, not making old design, new one is far better and more robust and more attractive. No, not selling case kits. I do have the case halves for a 7″ screen system left over from previous commission, not same as the iNto64 design, and not going to make any more of those. If you want a handheld I will make one for the same price. The case was prepared in black textured paint so that is what it would be made as. If you want me to make a system like that, i’ll do for the same price as the new, sleeker tabletop / handheld system (can be used both ways). Email me if you are serious about proceeding, as stated, and i’ll email photos of the casing.

    I sended u an email asking for photos of the case u are talking about..
    I’m interested in the portable and would like to see the case and talk a bit more about it to see if we can make it happen!
    My only concern is that u said a 7″ screen and that sounds big but I’m
    Not gonna freak out until I don’t see the pics..
    Thanks and hope
    To hear
    From u soon

    Hey bacman,
    I am attempting to relocate the cartridge slot on a second system after I broke my first in a sad dremel accident. I succeded on the first console to relocate t the cartridge slot, but doing it on the second console with the same wires and even the same slot, it fails to read any games.
    Any suggestions would be a huge help.
    Thank you

    Looking at the pins they are all in good shape, I have soldered the slot 3 times now and still no results. There are no shorts that i have been able to detect. Do you have any other suggestions or is this board broken.
    Thank you for your help

    Reply
    bacteria
    bacteriaPost author
    January 5, 2016 at 5:18 am
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    Check you’ve wired the cart port the right way around, game in the right way too, wires no longer than 6″ too.

    Hello bacman,
    I am doing a n64 portable and I have the power switch and the reset button desoldered. I put the wire in the reset port to keep it always on. The system did not turn on when I supplied power from a 7.7v battery and 3.3v regulator. Are there connections that also must be made in the power switch pins to keep power in the system? I noticed in the videos that it looked like the pins in the power switch were soldered together.
    Help would be appreciated
    Thank you

    Do I need to use one charging port/battery? or is one charging port for both batteries acceptable? A post on a modding forum mentioned that if I wire batteries in parallel with one battery protection circuit, I run the risk of them possibly being different power levels. IE: one charges more than another

    Reply
    bacteria
    bacteriaPost author
    January 17, 2016 at 12:18 am
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    Two batteries in series to make 7.2v may also be slightly different as each cell is 3.7v and not just one cell. Having two packs in parallel will charge both sets of cells as one for sure so technically if one of the cells in question was underperforming it would seem reasonable for potential issue so the only viable option is doing exactly as per my current and recent projects – interchangeable battery packs, not internal. Then it isn’t an issue in the first place…

    Hi Mr. Bachman,
    I have a some amount of experience in soldering and I am attempting to build an N64 portable like you did. I have extended the cartridge by soldering it to the correct points on the mobo and have removed the video socket ( which in hindsight I should have left it on to test to make sure the wired pins to the cartridge don’t have a short). I took apart an av cable and connected the ground to the ground point and the yellow video wire to the V point on the mobo and then hooked it up to a tv. I am not getting any video and was wondering if there was an easy way to check and see what I am doing wrong. I have re-soldered all the wires to the pins on the cartridge port and re-soldered the connections that the wires have to the mobo. At this point I am wondering if I should start over with a different N64.
    The N64 is NTSC.
    I am using 24 gauge stranded wire (for flexibility)
    N64 system, game, and expansion pack, were all tested and worked before I started.

    p.s. one more thing. I was looking at a couple other sites and one gentleman was able to wire 27 of the 48 pins and was still able to get his to work. Are all 48 pins required?

    You have done many of the regular checks, presumably also inserted expansion pack in the right way. The N64 is pretty rugged however check everything, including you have the correct voltages going into the system, eg 7.2v-16v on the 12v line (it only feeds to a 7805 so in effect, 5v) and 3.3v-3.4v on the 3.3v line. Yes you can wire to around 27 wires however can lead to some issues apparently, so I only recommend wiring to all 48 pins – not worth cutting corners.

    Reply

    Josh Gleason
    January 20, 2016 at 6:49 am
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    Thanks for the quick response. I will go back and check the voltages with a multi-meter and I will definitely stick to the 48 pins. I definitely don’t want to have problems further on down the road. Thanks again.

    -Josh

    Hi Mr Bachman,
    I was able to fix my previous issue. I am so close to having this project finished but I have run into another issue. I have purchased a TI PTH08080 voltage regulator and I have soldered everything according to your diagram. The input voltage is reading 7.8v but the output voltage is reading 0.00v. I resoldered everything to make sure there was not a bad connection. Do you think it could be a bad voltage regulator?

    Thanks

    Hello Mr. Bacman. I was going to make a list on your first video N64 portable tools needed, but it seems like I can’t hear you that well. Do you have a full list so I can write it down what I need to get and make N64 portable?

    Thanks.

    hey!

    Building a portable andni have come across a problem when putting the two halves together. Independently all of the parts worked. N64 board, psone screen, etc. When I connect the screen to the N64 board to the screen board via the composite pins (PS followed the videos pretty carefully I’m sure everything has been wired correctly.) – I get no sound or video, I desoldered them and attached the RGB pins instead thinking the composite is bad. Still nothing. The screen back light comes on and I can change the brightness and volume but no screen visual or audio. The screens fuses Ps1 and Ps2 are working I tested with a mulitimeter. My question is do you this there is a problem with the screen or the n64 board? I am stumped. This thing is soooooo close to completion but with no screen its still unfinished.

    THANKS AGAIN!!! YOUR WORK IS AWESOME!!!!

n64 commissions

I consider these to be the best I have made so far, very happy with how they look. Nicer to use than traditional handheld only systems – this unit can be played tabletop or handheld incidentally.

Standard specification:

PAL console * 5″ widescreen LCD * Runs off two standard camcorder Sony NP-F550 lithium batteries (not included, see below) which are interchangeable in system so no downtime when voltage runs low (or external power if you have a spare transformer rated at 7.4v-12v DC at 2 amps or more) * Low LED voltage circuit * Jumper Pak * Painted in two colours

System price for above £375 plus delivery (see below)

Options – please add the below to order as required (price includes installing the parts too):

Expansion Pak instead of Jumper Pack (see here for details) : £30

Either Rumble Pack or Memory card (a lot of games do not save, depends what you play, also if you have an Everdrive you don’t need a memory card) : £15

NTSC system not PAL (unless buyer supplies; these are expensive to get in UK) : £30

Choose own paint colours rather than stock. Colours will be from standard wall paint colour ranges : £10

Decals (you provide images to put onto casing, i’ll print onto vinyl) : £5

Delivery – £15 UK, tracked and insured delivery. Outside UK is dependent upo

n destination; I will confirm this cost when I prepare the final pricing.

Terms and conditions – Payment in British Pounds only. Terms : £200 in advance plus the cost of the optional extras if applicable (see above) to secure commission. Remainder to be paid when system is completed and prior to dispatch. No refunds on deposits made and commissions are only accepted once deposit is paid.

You will need to buy some Sony NP-F550 or compatible li-ion camcorder batteries and also charger. I would recommend you buy two compatible chargers and either two or four batteries, so when the low voltage LED light illuminates to indicate the batteries are running low you can replace them with charged battery packs if you have four instead of two. Compatible chargers cost around £2.50 each with USA type plug and £5 for UK style from Chinese ebay sellers, and the batteries around £5.50 each. The batteries are rated at 7.2v or 7.4v (either is fine), go for the ones which are 2500mA as two of those working in parallel provide 5 amps which is enough to power your system for around 3 – 3.5 hours depending on the games played. I cannot provide batteries with the system

whatsoever, even a watch battery, due to postal restrictions. If you require the system with a memory card you will need to pop in a 3v flat battery yourself into the system so it can work.

If you wish to proceed, please send me an email on the “Contact me” page detailing your requirements for the system based on above, country and PAL/NTSC preference; i’ll reply to confirm details and final costs so you can proceed to commit.

I can only take on one commission at a time so if there are orders pending I will update so you know when your system is due to start work on.

Guarantee – labour only; buyer needs to pay carriage both ways as well as parts if needed, there is no guarantee provided – “sold as seen” – hence why i’ll make a video demonstrating the system working and tested ful

ly prior to your final payment. A video will be supplied to the buyer before final payment made to show the system completed and working.

Bear in mind these systems are hand made so there will be minor blemishes, not “shop quality” although are made as high quality as I can. As these are not commercial products, the plastic is painted not dyed, so if the system gets scratched the paint is liable to come off in those places – in other words please “use with reasonable care” to maintain the finish.

If there are any Customs or Import taxes on the item when it gets into your country, you will of course be liable for paying those yourself.

Any sensible questions, please feel free to email me via the Contact page.

Showcase

I have made many systems to date, here are some of the systems I am proud of:

Project Unity
The most comprehensive retro video game console system ever made. Fact.

This is the prequel to Unity, which i’m working on at the moment, which looks and performs better than Project Unity – a true successor.

Project Unity enabled 18 console systems to work from one unit, using original hardware only; one PSU, one SCART, one controller. Awesome. In saying that, it is heavy, cumbersome and ugly – but functional. Ignore the website address in the video, used that domain before this one.

iNto64

Nintendo N64 portable. The vacuum forming was not easy and the case halves needed much work to close properly but the end result was rather nice. The screen was a PSone 5″ screen and the portable gained a lot of interest at the time on the internet. The connector under the system seemed a good idea at the time however in practice, having the buttons to control volume and brightness should have been on the console, as I did with other systems.

And another N64 portable:

This uses a 7″ widescreen Pillow car reverse screen.

A mini N64 console

Buyer only wanted console to play one game so it was hardwired into the system. Normally, the system would be expected to play all cartridges of course.

IntoGrafx

TurboGrafx portable. Similar case to above. Decided to sell it if anyone is interested.

BigBoy Advance

GBA with large screen, using SNES clone and GBA adaptor; 8″ screen.

GENERAL ELECTRONICS

Regulators

Resistors

LEDs

What wires do I need and where from?

Cheap way to get multi coloured wires for projects from old cables

Microchip orientation

Tactile switch wiring

Potentiometer wiring for setting audio volume

Replace ribbon cable (console to drive unit)

Merge S-video into composite (if you need to)

Joysticks

Wiring to SCART

Cleaning a dirty motherboard

Headphone and power jack

Removing ports from motherboards

General overview of tools you need for a modding project

BATTERIES
Opening up a Li-ion camcorder battery pack and what you get

Wiring up Li-ion or Li-po cells to a protection circuit and system

Wiring diagram to play system via batteries, charge them and option to play via mains transformer

Wiring in external battery charger unit

Low battery indicator LED

CASE MAKING AND CASE PREPARATION
Get a Dremel!

Case making – the easy way

Frankencasing – method works for controllers or cases

Harder method – making a vacuum forming table

Harder method – making a casing for vacuum forming

Reduce height of button sections for new casing

Crude method to installing button sections into a case

Better method to install button pad in a case

Best method to install button pads into a case!

Need to make the buttons interchangeable? Here is how

Screen hole cutting and preparation method

Making speaker holes

Easy and methodical method to relocate a cart slot

SCREENS
Screens – Pillow 7″ widescreen

Sony PSone screen

Removing anti-glare covering from a screen LCD

GUIDE TO MAKING A HANDHELD PORTABLE
Although this is for making an N64 portable, parts are relevant for other systems too

OTHER
Removing stubborn labels and pen marks from boxes and cartridges

UNITY – retro video game console multi-system

UNITY – retro video game console multi-system

Introduction to Unity – what is it about?

 

THE MASTER CONTROLLER

Introduction to the Master Controller

Part 1 – Customising a controller case, “Frankencasing”

Part 2 – Planning and installing the buttons and controls as well as painting the casing

Part 3 – Preparing the contact boards and installing them and joystick

Part 4 – Connecting it up

THE BASE UNIT
Overview

Pinout of the JAMMA connection (feeds console power and outputs controller and A/V externally)

Demonstration

CONSOLES INCORPORATED
(if it is in orange, the system is completed): * Nintendo NES * Nintendo SNES * Nintendo N64 * Nintendo GameCube with GBA addon * Nintendo Wii * Sega MegaDrive * Sega SMS * ColecoVision * Mattel Intellivision * Sony PlayStation 2 (plays PS1 games too) * Amstrad GX4000 * NeoGeo (1 game) * Atari Jaguar (1 game) * Atari 7800 * TurboGrafx *

PRESENTATION VIDEO AND DEMONSTRATION
Presenting the UNITY system – final video

Home

Introduction and site updates

Commissions

 

Thank you for keeping in touch with this website, appreciated. Site is getting around 100-250 unique visitors a day, which is great.

yt50My YouTube channel has many videos, some not shown here, which might be of interest – please click the logo if you want to have a look. I have re-made the site from scratch, making the guides streamlined, simple and clear. The guides here are mods I have done myself or developed/improved upon.

There is a Q&A section where you can ask questions on modding or give general feedback and i’ll try to reply as best I can, although I anticipate that the majority of questions will have answers in the reference sections.

Unity system update

Unity system – New master controller is finished and fully tested, works great on the console systems completed so far. Decided rather than making similar looking videos of each console add-on I would instead compile them in the final video as a complete presentation; which is likely to happen mid-end 2016. Whilst I know the interest in modding retro video gaming systems is far less than it was, the Unity system I am sure will generate a wave of interest over the net. It will be awesome! Progress on the system is slower now than was, as instead of making new systems I have been playing Unity. I have made a good start on the next system though, GameCube; as the Wii was finished a few weeks back.

UPDATE – (Mid December ’15) : GameCube works on Unity system, just need to cover the casing which is a quick process.

I will continue this between doing commissions.

Best wishes,