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Big Box, Small Box


bmonomad
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Been working on this for quite some time now (months?). To build the computer: 1 day To setup launchbox/big box config: 1 day To setup emulators to work with wireless controllers/config: many days To organize game library: 999999999^9999 days (may not be accurate) What's inside the little sleeper: Coolermaster 110 Case Intel i5 6600k (not overclocked) 8 Gigs corsair ram Geforce GTX 960 Asus H110i-Plus Mobo 1 3tb Hard drive, 1 (2.5'') 500gb hard drive - Room for 1 more full-size drive and 2 DS4 Controllers. I bought these thinking they could replace the wii stuff. And it does have working tilt, but everything is not accurate enough for wii games. However, you can use mouse on the controller which can be handy. Review of the build: Box runs at good, stable temps - not cool, but not hot either - around 37c in summer room with no a/c; ingame or idle. It's very quiet. Can't hear fans at all. Only con has been the front 'on' light, if that's not your thing. It's a relatively bright blue LED on the front 'cooler master' button, which can be annoying in dark settings. You can unplug it, but then it's hard to tell when the thing is off/on ;) What it runs: Just setup kodi to run as a front-end. Kodi is great, in theory, but it seems way too crash prone. And I'm barely using any plugins. Might get rid of it. Big box: standard theme - I find it looks great, though may try to figure out how to add favorites to the platform selection. Game Library: Around 8250 Games, not including multiple cd's. Only partial for Wii and PS2 due to space This took a long time. Why? 5 things. 1: Went through every console and got rid of games that had ratings below average, user and/or critic average. Essentially just purged the guaranteed garbage games. 2: I went through every system and determined what games had fan translations and/or hacks, and which ones are worth keeping. Usually determined the 'worth keeping' part by if the translation is complete, or if the game hack is a complete game overhaul with positive user ratings. 3: I tried to get rid of non-interest games, such as boardgames like mahjong, backgammon, etc, and (very) childish things like Barbie. 4: Went through the task of not only getting rid of duplicate games, but quickly determining the best option for that game, for a specific console. With this, I tended to favor the emulator ease-of-use more than the actuality. For example, Civilization might have been better on dos than snes back in 1995. However, dosbox with a controller vs retroarch snes with a controller is a no brainer. 5: getting cover art (quickly) for the list of games that couldnt be found in gamesdb. Emulators run: I changed a lot of these to Retroarch due to advice of this forum. And it was a good switch. Controllers/saves are so much more consistent now. Also all retroarch emulators are setup with retroachievements. 3DO: Retroarch 4do Arcade (mame): Retroarch Mame Commodore 64: winVice Dos: dosbox Neo Geo Pocket+Color: Retroarch mednafen_ngp Nintendo 64: Retroarch mupen64plus (or project64 if compatibility issue) Nintendo DS: Retroarch Desmume Nintendo Game Boy: Retroarch Gambatte Nintendo Game Boy Color: Retroarch Gambatte Nintendo Game Boy Advance: Retroarch vba_next Nintendo GameCube: Dolphin (or Ishiiruka fork if things not working/performance) Nintendo NES: Retroarch Nestopia Nintendo SNES: Retroarch bsnes_mercury_accuracy Nintendo Wii: Dolphin (or Ishiiruka fork if things not working/performance) PC (steam): steam Sega 32x: Retroarch picodrive Sega CD: Retroarch Genesis plus gx Sega Dreamcast: Demul (or nullDC if any issues) Sega Game Gear: Retroarch Genesis plus gx Sega Genesis: Retroarch Genesis plus gx Sega Master System: Retroarch Genesis plus gx Sega Saturn: SSF with daemon tools launcher script from forums (or yabause if issues) Sony Playstation: Retroarch mednafen psx Sony Playstaion 2: PCSX2 Sony PSP: PPSSPP TurboGrafx-16: Retroarch mednafen pce fast TurboGrafx-CD: Retroarch mednafen pce fast Wonderswan Color: Retroarch wswan Conclusion: Just a little write-up to show the work that possibly can go into this type of thing. Ironically I probably spent more time doing this than I ever will on playing the games :) Hope some of the notes helps. A launchbox idea possibility is (somehow) importing aggregate game ratings off a site that offers support. Not really sure which ones would. I used gamefaqs/metacritic manually. Software issues/questions: Backup: A hard drive failure scares me after all this setup. What's the best way to go around this? Just backup the file structure/tree?? Retroarch analog sensitivity: Trying to reduce this (with ds4) if anyone knows. Noticed it was better in project64 vs retroarch emulator - it was sensitive to the point I couldn't play many games accurately. Steam hotkeys: can't figure out how to hotkey the controller to exit steam back into bigbox. nothing seems to work. Feel free to add my on retro achievements: http://retroachievements.org/User/bmonomad 2016-07-13-10.58.05.jpg2016-07-13-10.58.39.jpg2016-07-13-10.58.48.jpg
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Very nice setup! I have Kodi too and notice the more updates they do, the more they crash. I am even running powerdvd as my player! As for backup, I have all the games, emulators and images in launchbox folder and its all on my network server. I am able to launch it on any of my three htpc. I have gigibit connection. The transfer rate is as fast as transferring from hdd to hdd. I'd make a mirror copy so you don't have to worry if anything acts up. I have WD greens HDD.
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I too use kodi, i had kodi version 15 something and it ran ok, then i did a update and a reinstall to the newest version and yea it seams way more unstable. I have a very similar build to yours, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6_2w3N2HdEA Since the above video i have made even more changes like adding a cleaner theme to bigbox, more updated images and snaps, keybinding section in bigbox so users can view keybinds before playing, Game guide section per system so if users need help on a section they can jump to the game guide section, add a bunch of other things also..... but yea im just waiting for a darn fix for kodi and its issues. I plan on making a short update video soon when i get time. If you are not already using Controller Companion i highly suggest trying it out it can come in handy.
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IlhanK said That's an amazing setup @Mute64! How do you get PDF files (game manuals) to open in fullscreen through BigBox?
I did some googling to find a pdf viewer that could display manuals in fullscreen mode, i can not remember what the software is but ill have a look and report back when i have time. Or you could just open them with chrome in kiosk mode. Edit: i use this comicbook viewer http://www.cdisplayex.com and i think there is an option to open in fullscreen mode.
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DOS76 said CDisplayEX is awesome never thought of using it in this way though.
Careful on the install - they tried to be tricky with the adware. Thanks for the replies. Wasn't sure if anyone had a similar build. Glad to know I'm not the only one having random kodi crashes. For size comparison on the box, that laptop behind it is a '15, not a '17 Nice find on Controller Companion. Was looking for something like that recently. It was annoying to launch a browser (from kodi shortcut) and not be able to type or exit. Messing around with it now.
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rmilyard said How you get 3DO: Retroarch 4do working? When I run it I just get the CD Screen after system starts up.
I found it to be one of the easier ones. I did nothing differently from other systems. Everything is unzipped, each game has it's own folder.
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rmilyard said How you get 3DO: Retroarch 4do working? When I run it I just get the CD Screen after system starts up.
With retroarch, when adding titles, you need to point to the "ISO" files and not the cue files... If you were using the standalone 4do emulator, it was the opposite (with the standalone emulator, you point it to the cue files)
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