This 3D-Printed Series of Retro Terminals Will Give You Today’s Design Fix

As part of a project intended to develop his design skills, Oriol Ferrer Mesià created this gorgeous series of 3D-printed terminals.

Most people today don’t know what a terminal is and wouldn’t have much use for one anyway. But those of us who like to get down and dirty with computers can still benefit from them. While they aren’t nearly as necessary as they were in the early days of computing, they still have their uses. If you want to work with a remote computer or a local headless computer, then a terminal is the tool for the job. As part of a project intended to develop his 3D-printing design skills, Oriol Ferrer Mesià created this gorgeous series of 3D-printed terminals that combine form and function.

While these all do contain single-board computers and therefore won’t fit some definitions of a “terminal,” that is pretty common today and these can absolutely be used as terminals. But really, this series is all about great styling, gaining a familiarity with CAD software, and designing specifically for 3D printing. Several terminals were built for this series and they are all completely unique. For each terminal, a specific single-board computer and display was chosen. The 3D-printed enclosures were then designed around those.

The first is the most unique of the bunch, because it is built around an unusual ultra-wide 8.8” 1920x480 LCD screen with a 4:1 aspect ratio. That was paired with an NVIDIA Jetson Nano single-board computer that is capable of natively running OpenGL. The enclosure was printed in two pieces using a nice copper PLA filament. A Ducky One SF mechanical keyboard is used for input.

The second in the series has a more conventional design that is vaguely reminiscent of the Apple iMac G3. The black PLA enclosure contains an 8” 1024x768 IPS LCD paired with a Raspberry Pi 4 Model B. This was setup with a Ducky One SF keyboard.

The third terminal is essentially a miniature version of the second terminal and was also printed in black PLA. This one has a smaller 5” 800x480 LCD and a Raspberry Pi 3 Model B. To compensate for the smaller size, this has a compact official Raspberry Pi Keyboard.

The fourth is even smaller than the third and has more modern aesthetics. This was printed in a bright orange PLA. It, too, has a 5” LCD, but it was paired with a Raspberry Pi 4 Model B. A super small wireless keyboard with built-in trackpad keeps the overall size as small as possible.

The final terminal in the series is the most modern of the bunch. This flat-panel design was printed in a translucent neon yellow PLA and it even has a cute little kitty cat sticker on the front. Despite the modern aesthetics of the enclosure, this terminal has an 8” 1024x768 IPS LCD with an old-school 4:3 aspect ratio. It’s powered by a Raspberry Pi 4 Model B and the official Raspberry Pi keyboard.

Sadly, Oriol Ferrer Mesià hasn’t published the STL files to 3D print these enclosures, but this series should provide you with tons of design inspiration for your next terminal build.

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