This Walnut, Maple, and Rosewood Box Hides a Powerful Portable Gaming Station — with Projector

Built around a Raspberry Pi 4, amp, speakers, and portable projector, this battery-powered box offers retro gaming on the go.

Gareth Halfacree
14 days agoGaming / Displays / HW101 / RetroTech

Pseudonymous woodworker "mw33212" has put together a gorgeous walnut, maple, and rosewood box with a hidden secret: it's a portable media and gaming station, running a Raspberry Pi and projector from a hidden internal battery.

"This one for my brother," mw33212 writes of the project. "10 and 5mm [around 0.4 and 0.2"] walnut with maple and some Indian rosewood. Hand tools and a cordless drill for the woodworking. Tried something new with the dovetails on this one."

While the box itself is an achievement in woodworking, it's what's inside that makes the build particularly special: A Raspberry Pi 4 Model B single-board computer running the Emulation Station software for on-the-go gaming, with an interface provided by a pair of wireless Super Nintendo-style game pads plus a third pad with dual analog sticks for when digital inputs simply won't do.

So that the user doesn't have to lug a monitor around, the box also includes an off-the-shelf projector — "an 'Aikuri P09-II,'" mw33212 explains, "[around the] size of a normal iPhone" — plus an amplifier and speakers for audio, while a four-cell battery board with 18650 lithium-ion cells installed means there's no need to go hunting for a power outlet either.

"[We've] yet to see how long it will power the full unit for," mw33212 admits, "but seems to be easily good enough for a full movie. Charging via a USB [Type-]C port. Panel on the top to access the protector controls. Slots for SD Cards into the Pi and the projector."

Full build details are available, alongside more imagery, on the project's Reddit thread.

Gareth Halfacree
Freelance journalist, technical author, hacker, tinkerer, erstwhile sysadmin. For hire: freelance@halfacree.co.uk.
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