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Thread: Project: Atari 2600 Pico Machine! (Update 19/06)

  1. #1

    Project: Atari 2600 Pico Machine! (Update 19/06)

    Hey guys!

    Some of you may or may not remember me. I've been a little quiet in the modding scene for a while, but I'm back in full swing with two projects! The first is this one, which is more of a sideline mod, and the other is a large scale project.

    Let's get started, shall we?

    A few months ago, a local guy posted a thread about a super old Atari 2600 console that he wanted to get rid of. Of course, I snapped it up, and I'd like to publicly thank him Thanks Anakha, I appreciate it so much!

    Here's the Atari he sent me:















    The Back:





    As you can see, the console took a bit of a beating in the post:









    The controllers:





    Some GAMES!!!





    Space Invaders!





    So, while trying to get my hands on one of VIA's Pico-ITX motherboards a while ago, i received an email from one of VIA's reps offering me one for a project. How lucky is that! VIA offered to send me one of the boards for a mod project.











    I've been lucky enough to be sponsored by another company too. A great bunch over at Logic Supply. This US based company sells an amazing variety of tiny stuffs like the Pico board that i have here. Check them out

    Anyway, Logic hooked me up with a 160GB SATA notebook drive, 1GB of So-DIMM RAM, and a fantastic PSU, designed SPECIFICALLY for this motherboard. The PSU is the Serener 120W DC-DC Power Converter. They also sent me a power brick.

    Here's the RAM:





    The HDD:





    The PSU:br />






    Everything!





    I put it all next to a Rubik's Cube so that you can get an idea of the size:






    So that's the start. The plan is to mod all of that goodness into the Atari, while preserving the look and feel of the Atari. It should be a whole lot of fun There isn't much to this project, it's just a quick small fun project I hope you enjoy it

    btw, sorry for the obscenely shallow DOF in some of the pics. I was still getting used to the new lens on this camera :P

    I've got more updates on the way

  2. #2
    Super Moderator tech-daddy's Avatar
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    Project: Atari 2600 Pico Machine! (Update 19/06)

    Awesome! I grew up playin g on one of these, so I will be watching in earnest on this mod!

  3. #3

    Project: Atari 2600 Pico Machine! (Update 19/06)

    This is just to cool! I would love to hear how the board performs when all is said and done. Will you be installing Windows 7 or something else?

  4. #4

    Project: Atari 2600 Pico Machine! (Update 19/06)

    Looking foward to see the out-come of this DJV, Been a fan of your modding since i joined PCF.

  5. #5
    Clear Coat
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    Project: Atari 2600 Pico Machine! (Update 19/06)

    I can only approve of this project if the atari guts either don't work, or will be moved (still working) into a different case. LOL

  6. #6

    Project: Atari 2600 Pico Machine! (Update 19/06)

    Thanks guys!

    Will you be installing Windows 7 or something else?I actually haven't decided yet. I'll see what I decide

    I can only approve of this project if the atari guts either don't work, or will be moved (still working) into a different case. LOL
    Don't worry, the internals were dead already

    Alrighty! Update time! Today the modding will start

    I opened up the console to see what's going on inside there. Man, it's so big, for so little hardware.













    The switch PCB:







    This, I assume, is where the actual processing takes place.









    Open:







    Just for fun, I placed the Pico next to the Atari board:







    Some fun facts about the hardware differences between the Atari and the Pico.

    Processor speed:
    Pico: 1Ghz
    Atari: 1.19Mhz. Yes, ladies, Mhz.
    That makes the Pico's chip 860 times faster (theoretically, of course, if Mhz is the only factor).

    Memory:

    Pico: This one's packing 1GB.
    Atari: 128B. Yes, that's 128 Bytes
    . The Pico has 8 MILLION times that much RAM.



    Anyway, this is where the fun starts:







    This console is dead, unfortunately Also, as you can see, the console was damaged in the shipping process, but that's okay, I've bought another one. Updates to follow!

  7. #7

    Project: Atari 2600 Pico Machine! (Update 19/06)

    Cool mod to work with. I was just talking with an old friend the other day who was one of the first people in our area to buy one of these when they first came out around the same time the VHS versus Betamax war was being waged lol.
    I remember playing Joust, Space Invaders, Donkey Kong, BurgerTime, and my favorite Pitfall. The sad thing was some of the games that came out were groundbreaking for the time, except the one Journey (band) decided to make of themselves which was probably still, one of the worst games ever made lol.

    He bought his 2600 just a few days after I bought my first Commodore Vic-20. The good ole days .

    Looking forward to see how this turns out and what you do with it.

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