Build you OWN retro game console with a Raspberry Pi! -

Build you OWN retro game console with a Raspberry Pi!

Jeff Geerling
Views: 100562
Like: 4855
Is it possible to have more fun building your game console than playing it? And heck, maybe we can build a game console that plays more retro games than a brand new Switch! It’s certainly more open.

Here’s all the equipment I used or purchased (affiliate links):

– Weller WES51 Soldering Station:
– Menda Alcohol container (for my isopropyl alcohol):
– WS-5 Adjustable stripper:
– Dowell Micro cutter:
– Hakko long-nose pliers:
– Hakko CHP 7-SA Tweezers (for SMD components):
– APT 1mm 1″ Kapton heat-resistant tape:
– AUSTOR Desoldering wick and solder sucker:

Mentioned in this video:

– Null 2:
– My Null 2 build blog post:
– RetroPie Weekly Build:

Support me on Patreon:
Sponsor me on GitHub:

#RaspberryPi #RetroPie


00:00 – Meet Null 2
01:19 – The build
06:02 – Getting software working
08:45 – Assembling the Acrylic case
11:03 – RetroPie setup and gameplay
14:00 – Things I like
15:31 – Things I don’t like
16:21 – Results and Outtakes


  1. of course you can have ssh on iPhone using jailbreak

  2. Get some very thin solder (like 0.2mm) and cut it, place it in the holes then heat it up – much easier to "cup solder"

  3. A scary, nerve-wracking, but worthy Christmas gift! Merry Christmas brother!

  4. Hey Jeff. I don't have much to say. Love how the content on your channel is more "affordable" for us regular people with regular incomes that have children and all of that life. In fact, I just wish you'd have more time to make more content 🙂

  5. That's a crazy way to solder a pi to a PCB. I've done the same thing with solder paste and reflow oven. It worked pretty well and less scary than using an iron. I'm curious if Jeff has reflow equipment and experience.

  6. That's a cute tiny handheld! Nice to see some of the building process!

  7. You know Sega Saturn is a thing and it's actually a better thing than PlayStation but I get why Psx is played on
    low end hardware. It's a low end console and deserves to be like pong and played on everything. I think the job you
    did was good and it seems to have come out well. Good Job!

  8. You can avoid the "cup hole" soldering by removing the plastic thing (I think because I have not built this but anyhow the plastic is removable. Once soldered trim the excess.

  9. I think I get to have my first smart moment. In circumstances where parts are tricky to hold / solder, don't use tape like you have here, use bostik blutack. easy to place, easy to remove, when its below 35c its fairly rigid. awesome work none the less Jeff.

  10. the problem with the null is the small battery and no battery monitoring.

  11. Seeing that THPS footage was what I wanted from this video. I've got a Retroflag GPi case and can't wait to stuff a Zero2W into it. The crashes during GT2 are likely an emulator bug, it's rock solid on a regular Pi 3 and 4.

  12. I bought a custom Super Famicom style Gameboy Advance shell and built a Pi Zero 2 based emulation machine into the shell 🙂

  13. Regarding compiling retroarch, why not cross-compile on your own PC (or if it's an M1 MacBook, just compile, I guess)?

  14. “No iPhone or switch does that”
    You can put linux on a switch 🙂

  15. This is the most saddening title ever.

  16. @Jeff Geering I signed up to get notifications to buy this, email popped up that it was back in stock, clicks link, sold out as of 28th which was the same day. HOW!

  17. I get so giddy every time I hear safety squints

  18. This is really cool. One of the projects that got me interested in electronics was making a portable SNES using Ben Heck's book. This was in the mid 2000's, before there were many handheld devices that could emulate the SNES well.

  19. > recompiling took ages
    well, why not to cross compile? we, gentooists, are pretty familiar with first building a rock solid cross-toolchains and with them im place, builiding binaries to other architectures.
    oh, i use Gentoo btw ;p

  20. Surface mount (SMD) soldering is so much easier using solder paste, applied to every pad, before mounting the component and heating the pads.

  21. If pi zero 3 gets pi 4 gpu and ram we be golden on the handheld scene, looks ace.

  22. did you pre solder the pads with leaded solder? because that should be in the manual. Like a BGA pre tin it all and the connections should be easy.

  23. Quite an impressive journey if you're into such projects, and a nice "documentary" Jeff !
    I stuck my Zero2 inside the GPi case… wish i had a spare cartridge to improve cooling and OC it, might look into it later.
    For the time being i decided to build a FPGA handheld; you have a valid point about acrylic cases here, which i didn't think of, so maybe i will leave out 3d printing 🤔

  24. Jeff if you flash your cards with dd, use –conv=sync
    Thank me later

  25. My iPad allows me to connect via ssh to it. It's in it's best state – jailbroken <3

  26. so you spend 150 dollar and 40 hours of pure frustration on a handheld that the Chinese make for $50, shipped to anywhere in the world ! RGB10 is the best price value.

  27. I hope either you're the one selling those kits, or, they're seriously hooking you up. This video probably made them a ton of money in extra sales.

  28. Pulling out that sd card with the plier almost stopped my heart 🥲

  29. "Thousands Milliamp battery"

    You could just have said 1 Amp battery.

  30. I don't get how you're such a Linux enthusiast but you use an iPhone…

  31. 16:21 that quote hit me out of left field like an orbital strike.
    Thanks to you and Wikipedia, I know Terry Pratchett a little better.

  32. Where are these Pi Zeros? Haven't found them available. Out of Stock like someone bought them all to resell down the line, not sure, but this sucks. Why do these video's when they are not available? This kit cost 5 times the amount of the Pi Zero 2. Let's see, $49 for the kit to use a $15 SBC, not a good deal! THE KIT LINK IS OUT OF STOCK!

  33. Too bad the actual Null 2 PCB isn't in stock…

  34. Another great video, Jeff!

    Out of curious, did you get a chance to also try running DosBox on this? Just curious if the Pi Zero 2 is powerful enough for emulating Dos games =D

  35. Just subscribed, love the content. After a realisation a few weeks ago I just had to finally say it – the US pronunciation of "soldering" reminds me of the ancient cities of Soldom and Golmorrah.

  36. pretty cool but a version for a full size pi 4 that includes everything (also a touchscreen) should be made… doesnt matter if it ends up a tad bigger… the pi 4 is much faster afterall

  37. I am really looking forward to your cutiepi review! I would prefer a more conventional tablet with kickstand instead of the handle, but it is easily the most compelling pi tablet I have seen so far. I hope it is good!

  38. Isn't there a difference between building and assembling in English anymore?

  39. I'm still waiting on a fairly inexpensive handheld option from Retroflag that uses a CM4. One day…

  40. It looks like there is a clear path from the HDMI port to the outside of the shell. It's likely you could use a ribbon cable or extension PCB.

  41. What SD card reader are you using? I need a reliable one!

  42. The clear plastic thing was stopped because of how toxic and expensive it is to make. Acrylic works, but it's more brittle

  43. As an Australian, it's pronounced "Bond-eye" not "Bond-ee"

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