Heres some awesome news regarding the rebuilding of old systems into something much better:

It is one thing to take a retro console, gut it, put it in a nice case with lights, throw-in a flashcart, or other things, but ElectronAsh aka @AshEvans81 takes it to a whole new advanced level, he desolders the original chipset of let's say for example an Nintendo 64, then reballs it, resolders it onto a new 4-layer PCBoard he has designed himself, with added new features, like custom FPGA, faster RAM, HDMI upscaler, flashcarts, sdslots and ton more as you can see from his pictures that he has been sharing to the public finally!

Project #1 - NINTENDO 64
This is the Mini N64 motherboard I designed. Only 10cm square, but crams on the original N64 chipset, FPGA, SDRAM, HDMI, and SDRAM (for inbuilt "Flash" cart)

It was my first ever complex 4-layer design. Started off in Eagle when reversing the schematic (years ago), but imported into Altium to finish the routing. It is actually "booting", but only at 4/5 the usual speed atm, as I still need to tweet the RDRAM routing.

Basic support for wireless controllers has been working for a while, but only tested via a "UDP Joystick" app on Android. Latency seemed very low, though. The PIF / CIC stuff is implemented on the FPGA (minus Mempak or EEPROM saves atm), so will eventually be true region-free.

The RCP and RDRAM do get fairly toasty, but can apparently take a fair bit of heat before problems start appearing. Obviously a lot of the portable modding community might have some good ideas for cooling, but as long as the heatsink surface area is large-ish, it should be OK.

It does "boot", yep, but I've been having trouble getting the line doubler to output via HDMI, as HDMI is fussy with the pixel clock etc. The N64 part is only running at 4/5 the normal clock freq as well atm, as I need to do more tweaks to the RDRAM routing for the next boards.

I've been testing the line-doubler logic via "crappo VGA" atm, using a few spare FPGA pins as sigma-delta RGB DACs. This is a quick vid of the board running, but with no RC filtering on the "DAC" pins, and the video encoder REALLY hates the dots. haha

It won't be open-sourced for the time being, sorry. I'm hoping to do these retro-related projects for the foreseeable future, so looking to sell some boards if it all works out. The board does support a full-sized cart slot on a btw. SDRAM not yet working, but maybe soon.

I'm hoping my board will eventually work better than Ben Heck's last one. haha (I have been a tad harsh about some of Ben's projects in the past, but he does make some great projects and vids, and hopefully the criticism taken as constructive. )

I will try to upload more photos of the board (and cart) tomorrow, including said paperclip, if I can find one. lol It's almost exactly 10cm square, though, and actually fits into a Gotek case.

Project #2 - DREAMCAST:

This is the Dreamcast motherboard re-design, but it might be a way off yet. Not sure yet if the Dreamcast one is viable, as it requires removal of the chipset from OG DCs, reballing, then re-soldering. It will definitely have the HDMI and GD Emu onboard eventually.

If it does get finished, I will hook up the G2 bus (expansion port) to the FPGA as well, and then hopefully add modem / LAN / BBA "emulation". The data could be sent via the WiFi module, so the online games can be played. Or, maybe do dial-up emulation like the DreamPi project.

If the "stock" board can be routed OK, I had it in mind to do a very small version too, which could still possibly squeeze on a small FPGA for HDMI and GD Emu. This example is only 13cm by 7.5cm...

Project #3 - GAME GEAR:

Making progress on a new LCD replacement / FPGA board for the Game Gear, Lynx, and other retro machines. It has HDMI and RGB outputs, and will be able to run many 8-bit retro cores, too. (including stand-alone).

This is a quick test of the Commodore C16 core.

The board has 512KB SRAM microSD, so can be used as an internal "Flash" cart for the handhelds and other 8-bit machines. It has an ESP8266 WiFi module, which can be used to connect keyboards and joysticks via a simple / cheap adapter later on.

Can also be used as an HDMI mod board for machines like the Amiga, N64, Jag, NeoGeo, 3DO etc. (Likely no up-scaling on this version, but it's no deal-breaker on modern TVs that up-scale already.) I'll probably finish the plug-in mod for the PC Engine / TG16 after this.

Currently, he not planning on open-sourcing the designs since they need professional removal of original chipset and soldering them back onto his designs, but at some point he is looking at selling the projects on need to order basis, so this is not going to be cheap, similar to Ben Heck modding projects, but with more style, class, and designing into the whole retro thing, instead of just making it mini-portable.

NEWS SOURCE: @AshEvans81 (via) Twitter