RP2040 based project with 9V battery form factor very similar to Arduboy Mini

I designed this project a couple weeks ago and got it earlier this week, and only first heard about the Arduboy today when I saw the ShortCircuit video about the Arduboy Mini (So I designed it without any influence from the Arduboy). But it turns out my design is super similar to the Arduboy mini. The main differences are that I designed it to be powered by a 9V battery and that it uses an RP2040 microcontroller rather than an ATMega.

Right now all the applications on it I made myself, but now that I know there’s a bit of an ecosystem with lots of games already made for a similar device, I might try and see if I can port them over when I have time.

Like the Arduboy Mini it has 16MB of flash, a 128x64 OLED, 4 D-Pad buttons and A and B buttons. It can be powered and programmed through the micro USB port, or it can be powered from a 9V battery. Technically any voltage source between ~4-17 volts should work fine, but it was designed with a 9V battery in mind. The voltage is dropped down to 3.3V by a buck converter, so it’s pretty efficient. The current draw depends on how many of the pixels are on, but in a normal game I measured about 13mA from the 9V battery being drawn. That should be at least 40 hours of run time on a standard 9V battery.

Well anyway, here are some pictures:


Others have adapted the arduboy library to the rp2040 and it’s a project I want to get behind and fully support soon!

I’m always seeing these things about the RP240! Maybe I’ll pick up a Pico or an RP240 Nano sometime!

Super cool project! It just pains me you went with a Micro USB port, and not a USB C port :wink:.

I considered USB C, would have been no harder to do, but I have a bunch of micro USB cables and only like 1 USB C, so it was more convenient to do micro USB.


Yeah, I get that. I have a whole bin full of Micro USB cables but only like two USB C cables :stuck_out_tongue:

I like how you can plug the thing in any way with USB C though.

Nicely done :heart_eyes:

I want to move to RP2040, I’ve got a few projects in the oven.

I will need to make a new forum for “Raspberry Arcade” or whatever the RP2040 based ecosystem will be called (that’s the best name I’ve got so far) Open to ideas.

I really like your use of the 9 volt battery! Although, not rechargeable I bet it would last for an extremely long time, most people might not ever need to change it. My circuit board design wants to see a rigid/flex design where the connectors are integrated and it’s all one piece. You could even have the factory put a double sided sticker on there with the protective film still on, so it’s a little read-to-go thing.

Wow, great job!

If you have any idea about building rp2040 based consoles for names or what to do.

I want to do one where it’s basically an Arduboy clone. but also one where it’s kind of like a playdate clone, or at least uses the same display.


The 9 volt battery lasts about 2 days of constant use (40-50 hrs), but it has a really long shelf life when not in use. So for ordinary use, maybe half an hour a day, it should last a few months. There are also rechargeable 9V batteries you can get. I’ve been using one with it.

Don’t have any good names on the top of my head for a new console. As for what to do it depends on your goals I guess, but definitely take a look at the Hardware Design with RP2040 guide. It’s very easy to follow.