TinyNES – An open-source game console with original or cloned Ricoh RP2A03 & RP2C02 chips (Crowdfunding)

TinyNES (Tiny Nostalgia Evocation Square) from Tall Dog Electronics is an open-source hardware game console compatible with NES cartridges and featuring the original Ricoh RP2A03 CPU based on MOS 6502 and Ricoh RP2C02 PPU (Image Processing Unit). in the Nintendo NES, although clones may also be used in the future due to lack of availability.

Designed to deliver the same experience as the original Nintendo NES, the console comes with two NES controller ports, a cartridge slot, composite RCA video and mono audio outputs, and all electronics are housed in an FR enclosure -4, the same material used for most PCBs.

TinyNES specs:

  • CPU – Ricoh RP2A03 CPU based on MOS 6502, or UMC UA6527 clone
  • PPU – Ricoh RP2C02 Image Processing Unit, or UA6528 MCUs clone
  • Cartridge slot for NES cartridges
  • Controller Ports – 2 original NES-style 7-pin controller ports
  • Video – NTSC composite analog video output (CVBS) via yellow RCA barrel jack
  • Audio – Mono analog audio output via red RCA barrel jack
  • Miscellaneous – Reset Button, On/Off Switch
  • Power – 5V DC input via center positive 2.1 x 5.5mm barrel jack
  • Dimensions – 138.5 x 130.0 x 32.5mm (matte black FR-4 housing)
  • Weight – 360 grams

OSHW Nintendo NES Compatible Game ConsoleTinyNES card

There are other NES-compatible consoles, but these are based on FPGA or NOAC (NES-on-a-chip) solutions, while TinyNES is the only NES-compatible device I’ve seen with the exact same chips used in Nintendo’s original NES.

TinyNES will also be fully open-source hardware with the design files (mechanicals, schematics, etc.) to be released under the CC BY-SA 4.0 (Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International) license allowing users to create their own designs , including for commercial projects, as long as the project is released under the same license and credit is given to prior work.

TinyNES does not attempt to add new features and its main goal is to allow users to play NES games as if they were using an original Nintendo console. It’s not without its advantages over the original, as it’s more compact, consumes less power, and is mostly built with modern components.

Tall Dog Electronics initiated the project on CrowdSupply a few weeks ago and has raised close to $50,000 so far. A TinyNES game console with an AC wall adapter, power cable, and dual RCA cable costs $199 with original Ricoh chips or $179 with UMC clones. The 8BitDo N30 2.4g Wireless Controller is sold separately if you need it for $25. Shipping adds $8 to the United States and $18 to the rest of the world, and deliveries are expected to begin by the end of May 2022.