The Beginnings of the Lakka Box
After putting together the bits and bobs of an USFF Dell Optiplex 780 that I got secondhand from Reddit, I set out modifying the case to allow airflow and downloading the Lakka OS to use in this emulation-station-meets-media-center. This was more or less a project for my childhood self, as I wanted dedicated hardware to begin replaying childhood games on, that could handle harder titles like Nintendo 64 or PS1 as well as the NES and SEGA classics.
In the second picture above, we can see the parts begin to arrive for my rebuild of the small computer, usually used by businesses in POS environments and for thin client purposes. I went from the stock build to a Core 2 Extreme, custom 120mm fan for the side and Sandisk 32gb SSD. Here's hoping my bargain-bin, college-budget parts can build a great emulation machine!
As I left for a short vacation, friends of mine in Engineering and Modelling helped me modify the case for the Lakka Box in my absence. You can see above the planning of modifications to the case after sandblasting and removing rivets.
As you can see in the above two images, the case now has a bit of primer added to it prior to buffing out some scratches and filling them in with Bondo. Thanks again to my friends Nate and Matt for helping out with these stages!
Later on, the fan cutouts to the original case would be made so that a 120mm fan could pull all the hot air out during extended PS2/N64 game sessions on the Lakka Box. Core 2 Quads and Core 2 Extremes, while old, can still put out some heat when worked to the bone by high-resolution renders of older titles.
Looks like things are running fine!
The Lakka Box with all its new parts is complete! Too bad the fan couldn't end up getting mounted properly due to there not being another few pins on the motherboard for it.
The L.B. plays Ocarina of Time at 20-30fps depending on where you are in the game, Majora's Mask the same...GBA games such as Megaman Battle Network Blue here run fine as well at 60+ fps.
For a controller I decided on using a classic-themed 8bitdo gamepad. Sadly the gamepad's bluetooth functionality is lost on the fact that not even a bluetooth dongle seems to work well with Lakka, though I'll do some tinkering in the future to see how it ends up working!
…and that’s all, folks!