The Sega Dreamcast was a good-looking console, the last console from Sega and one that introduced online gaming to a generation. This project, Dreamcast One, detailed by poster Temujin 123 on the Computerbase forums, takes a cutting tool to that beautiful casing and bores it out to fit a mini gaming PC inside. And it's a brilliant piece of work.
Inside the Dreamcast's 7.48 in × 7.71 in × 2.97 inches (190 mm × 195.8 mm × 75.5 mm) case Temujin 123 has managed to fit an AMD Ryzen 5 Pro 4650G, 16GB of DDR4-3200, and three SSDs via the judicious use of a Dremel. Choosing the AMD 4650G APU rather than a separate GPU for the PC is a smart move given the limited space, but Temujin 123 has managed to fit in the DVD-RAM drive from an old laptop. Cooling comes courtesy of a Noctua NH-L9a-AM4, there’s a Wi-Fi 5 card rather than a 33K modem, and the four controller ports now sport a USB upgrade.
The Dreamcast was already a mini gaming PC which ran a Hitachi SH-4 32-bit RISC processor, 26MB of various RAM types, and PowerVR2 GPU, it pioneered the use of off-the-shelf components for console building. Its Windows CE operating system (with a DirectX API that made porting PC games easy) and built-in modem made it very PC-like for the time, as did the keyboard and mouse peripherals.
Check out the forum thread for insights into how he did it, and a lot of pictures.
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Ian Evenden is a UK-based news writer for Tom’s Hardware US. He’ll write about anything, but stories about Raspberry Pi and DIY robots seem to find their way to him.
Fitting a modern processor into the chassis is one thing, but I am not sure how cool it runs. The 4650G is a 65W processor and in such a small chassis, I think it will run quite hot under load. I've tried fitting a Ryzen 5 3400G into a InWin Chopin chassis and cooling the APU with a low profile Cooler Master G200P before, but the thermal is really bad. At idle with an ambient temp of around 30 degrees, it is between 40 to 50 degree celcius. At load, it can easily reach 80 to 90 degrees. When running 3D Mark Fire Strike, it will freeze and reboot.Reply
The Dreamcast is perfect as is.Reply