Worklog Retro Lite CM4 - A StonedEdge and Dmcke5 collaboration

StonedEdge

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Small step in the right direction last night with the CM4.
At long last, it boots! Finally we can see that beautiful splash screen B|

Turns out, a small bridge on the B2B connectors were stopping it from booting up, that was almost impossible to spot without a microscope. Soldering those connectors by hand was doable but a huge PITA. The $15 640x480p USB microscope saves the day - thanks to @BocuD for suggesting that one. @kent also was a massive help in scoping all of the lines to see if there was any issues with the power sequencing. Thank you both for your help.

Next steps include testing audio amp, writing firmware for the max17055 and safe shutdown scripts.

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can't wait to see this thing finished with all the steps to get up to the finished result.
If by any means this could help you motivate yourself to make a commercial product out of this... I'm willing to help distribute this in Europe :p
 

StonedEdge

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can't wait to see this thing finished with all the steps to get up to the finished result.
If by any means this could help you motivate yourself to make a commercial product out of this... I'm willing to help distribute this in Europe :p
Right now we don’t really have short term plans to make this into a product for people to buy. Rasp Pi foundation have announced there will be limited availability for the CM4 until Q1-Q2 2022 because of the silicone shortages. It’s also probably why there aren’t any Chinese kits available out there either. But not to say we wouldn’t make this into a kit in the future once we’ve done thorough testing and part availability gets a little better.
 

StonedEdge

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MAX17055 fuel gauge is working and outputting all of the correct parameters over the I2C bus, which means the hardware side of stuff is mostly completed. TTE (time-to-empty) is probably accurate as we still haven't booted the Pi from battery so the load current is insignificant right now, hence why it shows 100+ hrs.

Thanks to @Aurelio for assisting with the initialization steps and @Dmcke5 of course for the python scripts and overlay work. Software has never been my thing so I'm grateful to learn from the both of them.

Next step we'd like to try and figure out is how to use the dispmanx video API to display a battery percentage text indicator from 1% - 100% next to the icon and also get PWM control with a button combination. But we're making some good progress at least!

Reading out some parameters from the registers of the gauge:
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Look at that, a battery indicator :D
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StonedEdge

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Sorry for the constant delays and slow progress on this project - things have been delayed numerous times because we're both busy and don't do this full time - plus the PCB hasn't gone as well as I'd hoped. We're already up to revision 1.3 now.

I just received the cases from Dmcke5 and can confirm they're incredibly well made - everything feels super high quality and the DPAD is probably the best homemade DPAD I've used - it's the perfect balance between clicky and squishy. I'm a bit bias but I'd go as far to say its better than a Switch Lite DPAD.

I think we're closing in on the home stretch now. I need to tackle the backlight issue and 5V regulator problem (we still haven't booted the board succesfully from a battery just yet), but audio, fuel gauge, screen, USB hub and charging all work. I think I know how to solve the issues, but I will confirm with the scope this weekend. I am hoping for a first completely assembled unit by end of October - that's the goal but like all things... it will eventually be done. Just need to continue the grind.

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EDIT: Now booting from Switch Lite battery and have fixed switching instability on the backlight boost.

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Added some metal fly mesh for the intake vents that I painted.

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