[WIP] Simon Merrett's Arduboy Clone


(Simon Merrett) #41

@Keyboard_Camper I love this step in the hardware design process. Can’t believe I haven’t tried it before. Printing a perfectly 1:1 scale selection of layers from kicad was deceptively easy.


I think another 4mm to the left for the direction buttons should do it and maybe 2mm for the A button. As I said before, I do expect to need to revise this board before I’d call it done.

Love the cardboard mock up though!


(Simon Merrett) #42

Layout revs have moved the buttons as above. A & B have also come down (a finding from the card mockup). Off to route the traces now. Although feel free to keep comments coming.


(Simon Merrett) #43

Now with net traces! Time to sleep on this and check things another time.


(Kea Oliver) #44

Not sure if its the colour choices but I thought this was a map


(Kevin) #45

Whats the size / spacing / geometry of those buttons?


(Simon Merrett) #46

@bateske These are the kind of thing I had in mind until I can sort out footprints and my own (mechanical) confidence in snap domes:


The direction buttons are on a ~11mm grid, so ~16mm across the diagonals. The silkscreen circle around the direction buttons is 24mm dia. A and B are at 45 degrees and ~14mm apart.

On my cardboard cutout the spacings seem ok (I appreciate some hands are larger but this does need to fit children’s hands too). The buttons are admittedly small but I envisage they will become snap domes, as mentioned, and would also work with button covers when it gets an enclosure, as they’re so low-profile. What are the official Arduboy buttons’ size / spacing / geometry?


(Simon Merrett) #47

@Kea_Oliver oh dear, I’m not great at layout! Would you be interested in helping by reviewing the board layout?

Either way, have fun navigating the map!


(Pharap) #48

If you’ve got some other handheld games consoles or game controllers to hand, use those for comparison.

Is that picture the printed one or the cardboard one?
Or did you print ink onto cardboard and then cut it out?


(Simon Merrett) #49

Embarrassingly not!

In post 41 I printed onto A4 paper (you have to check a box to print all the selected layers onto one sheet, rather than a separate sheet per layer). I then glued that to some card and cut around the edges. Is this what you were asking about?


(Pharap) #50

That’s unfortunate.

Interestingly your current design reminds me of the Game Boy Micro:

Yes, that makes sense.

I hear ‘printing’ used to mean ‘3D printing’ so often that talking about a printer that puts ink on paper starts to seem weird. :P


I’m pretty sure the colour choices help.
The little white dots at the ends of the lines make it look like a London tube map, or a bus route map.
(Maybe the green looks like grass too?)


(Simon Merrett) #51

I have a 3D printer which I use for mechanical prototyping but the 2D version was waaay faster and easier for this purpose.


(Simon Merrett) #52

I have added the kicad to Github and published it under the MIT license (so you can do pretty much what you want with it). Happy to share any footprints etc individually.


(J M) #53

Why aren’t you using an STM H7 or a PIC32?

Overall it is a fantastic design and looks wonderful. Looks like art so far.


(Simon Merrett) #54

@Seegson thanks for the compliment! The reason I’m using the SAMD21 is because I want to move on from the ATMEGA and ATtiny chips that I am familiar with from the arduino world. Moving to PIC would seem like more of a leap in one go than necessary. The H7 seems overpowered in the sense that I couldn’t see myself using it in my work designs, so learning it might be inefficient. I do want to get into stm32 development but more around the M0 and M4 end of things.


(J M) #55

You are most welcome. I understand where you are coming from. I am excited to see how it all turns out.


(Scott R) #56

Ha wrong topic so i’ll Just leave this here for a reply


(Simon Merrett) #57

@Keyboard_Camper I have looked at those displays for other applications. Great for low power, daylight readability and reasonable refresh rate. But the price is too high for the size. I think the increasing availability is going to keep them as a niche product (you still need to provide a voltage toggle to maintain the display, even in low power mode).