Worklog Gamecube Portable: Let the Games Begin

Discussion in 'GameCube' started by Cradiak, May 27, 2018.

  1. Cradiak .

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    This is the first entry for my Gamecube Portable, or semi-portable depending on whether or not I decide to go with a battery pack.

    I know what you're gonna say: "The Wii is better, don't mod a Gamecube!" Well forget the haters! I just happened to have a Gamecube lying around that I don't use anymore, so it seemed like a prime target for my next portable!

    This is my work log of said project. It's only my second portable so my feelings won't be hurt if I kill it and don't finish the project or abandon it for another Wii portable. But I love the process so it'll be fun for me either way.

    I don't own a 3d printer and have no desire to get one for some time so I'll be frankencasing it. To be honest that was one of the most rewarding parts of my first portable so I'm happy to do it again.

    I'm aiming to improve on some of the things I felt weren't very good on my Wii Laptop. Here are a few plans I have thus far:

    1. Since the wasp fusion is so hard to come by and since I kind of loathe software modding, I'm going to keep the disc drive intact and fully functional. I may later mod the software, but I doubt it.

    2. Because I'm leaving the disc drive intact, I'm considering designing it like a portable DVD player. I may use a Zn case like my Wii Laptop since it's already in that design factor. I also want to have the controller integrated into the case so it is more portable, but I don't plan on making it a handheld...still working that out in my mind, I'm sure I'll change my mind plenty before the end.

    3. Since I already used a Zn case on my first portable, I plan on heavily modifying the case to make it clearly distinguishable over my other one (assuming I do in fact decide to use the Zn case).

    4. I was pretty unsatisfied on the paint job on my first portable, the gray was pretty bland imo. I want to give it a much better and unique paint job this time around.

    5. The port cutouts were kinda shoddy and not very practical in terms of functionality (I ended up having to use tweezers or something to remove the SD card, for example) so I plan on doing a much better job of that this time.

    Ultimately, I want this to look like something you would buy in a store, so I want it to have a very sleek and professional look to it. But again, it's my second portable so I'm keeping my expectations realistic.

    Given the higher voltage demands of the Gamecube compared to the Wii and the reduced battery life, I haven't decided if I'll do a portable battery power source or not yet.

    So, with that said, let the games begin! Screenshot_20180527-152513.png
     
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  2. nephitejnf .

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    The ZN case was a defacto laptop style case. I like the idea, I have a couple GCs laying around myself. Can't wait to see the further progress.
     
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  3. Cradiak .

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    Update video on progress. Took this a few days ago so I've gone a little bit more since then:
     
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  4. Shank Certified Wiitard Staff Member . .

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    FredisDisappoint.jpg
     
  5. Cradiak .

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    Update, work log 2.
    Finished with the regulator wiring and did my first power test, everything powers on. Audio is really low, so I have to figure out if that is the cable I used to test or if I need to rewire something.
     
  6. jefflongo Broke BitBuilt Staff Member . .

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    About the audio, are you powering the preamp?
     
  7. Cradiak .

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    I'm not sure, where is the preamp located? I just assumed it used the 5v or 12v feed from the regulator.

    EDIT: If the preamp is the issue, that's not a big concern since I'm going to use my own preamp and speakers for it.
     
  8. Stitches 2 and a Half Dollarydoos Staff Member . .

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    The pre-amp is a little chip on the board that boosts the audio coming out of the GPU up to a level that the amp in a TV can comfortably work with. It runs off the 12v line, so if you're using the stock regs and not trimming the board, it'll be fully powered and working. You can disconnect the 12v line and grab the audio from the inputs of the pre-amp if it's too loud.
     
  9. Cradiak .

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    I had the 12v connected, so I'm not sure why is was so quiet. I'll troubleshoot that later I suppose, but I did have audio, so that's a plus, even if it was quiet.

    On another note, my battery and case came in today, so I'm doing to get to work on designing that and testing the battery pack with the Gamecube. And I'm going to get the Gamecube controller set up.

    IMG_20180614_170456-picsay.jpg

    Edit: And I have my cardboard dummy housing all ready to cut up :D You show me a fancy 3d printer and I'll show you some cardboard, ducktape, and scissors. It's just as good!! Lol

    IMG_20180614_174340-picsay.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2018
  10. Cradiak .

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    Work Log 3:


    Just a little update on progress with the controller and started designing the case with my cardboard dummy. I've done some more case prep since this video was made, will have another update soon.
     
  11. Cradiak .

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    Work Log 4

    Not too much progress since the last update unfortunately. I had some issues with my regulator, ended up having it wired backwards at the voltage input so I was blowing fuses in my regulators. Now that I've got that cleared up, my mobo seems to have a short in it. Might have to get a new one.

    Most of the progress I've had since the last update is on my case, I've been working on it quite a bit, pictures below.



    IMG_20180722_223007.jpg IMG_20180722_223020.jpg IMG_20180722_223141.jpg
     
  12. BocuD .

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    Wow, that frankencasing is looking pretty good. Too bad you fucked the polarity.. Oh well, I've made the mistake before, but that was with a wii. I suggest cleaning your entire board in IPA, and visually inspecting other then the edges. Maybe you can fix it. Then again, it's a gamecube, so it might as well just die on you :rothink:
     
  13. Cradiak .

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    Thanks. Yeah it's unfortunate, I've cleaned it pretty thoroughly with denatured alcohol but I'll probably do some more cleaning and inspection just in case. Here's a picture showing the pins that are shorted to ground, if anyone has any ideas where a potential short could be with those pins in mind, let me know, although I'm sure it could be several places.
    Screenshot_20180722-170827-picsay.png

    I did a little more casework last night, I think I'm done with the shoulder buttons as far as the bondo goes and I put the housing for the c stick in. I noticed the bondo on the shoulder buttons cracks if the plastic piece of the zn housing bends, but when it's put together I don't think it will have enough give to crack it. I'll keep my fingers crossed...
    IMG_20180724_202638-picsay.jpg IMG_20180724_202632-picsay.jpg
     
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  14. Madmorda Painting Queen Staff Member . . .

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    I learned the same thing on my gcp :) Spot putty is so soft that it is best used on like pinholes and small scratches. What I do is use excess epoxy to fill in the gaps more than necessary, then sand it down with my dremel. It's a lot more solid than using spot putty, and quicker than slowly layering up.
     
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  15. Cradiak .

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    Yeah, I had some issues on my Wii Laptop. I used bondo heavily on the screen in frankencased, and it cracked. I'm using epoxy a lot more on this project. I just started sanding the epoxy, it suuuuucks lol I got spoiled when I only had to sand the bondo lol
     
  16. Madmorda Painting Queen Staff Member . . .

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    I use my dremel and it goes pretty fast :D you should try that to get the rough shape, then hand sand the fine details
     
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  17. Cradiak .

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    I used my dremmel a little, but it seemed like doing heart surgery with a power saw lol what attachment/method did you use?

    I used the little round rubber piece with the round sandpaper thing that slides over. I also had trouble getting a lot of spots because the dremmel itself kept getting in the way.
     
  18. Madmorda Painting Queen Staff Member . . .

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    Yeah I used the same bit as you, the sanding drum. I sort of make a bump with the epoxy so that it's definitely not an indent. I have a dremel micro and i set it on power 2/5 until I get close to the case, then 1/5 to get it closer, then I hand sand until it's smooth, then bondo and sand to fill in pinholes. Maybe your dremel is just stronger lol
     
  19. Cradiak .

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    Or my technique is crappy haha
     
  20. TheGuy504 .

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    I’m thinking about using the same screen. Does it work well? Did you find a way to power it off of 5v?
     

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