8 months ago

NES case review

Turning a Raspberry Pi into a mini NES with the Kintaro Entertainment System

Cases for the Raspberry Pi are a dime a dozen these days, so it’s nice to see people selling fun themed cases for your Pi projects like this NES case. It sets them apart from the myriad plastic, yet functional, cases for the Raspberry Pi.

The maker of this case, Kintaro, sells a couple of retro-console-themed cases. Along with this NES-inspired case, you can also get a (US purple) SNES-style case. The NES one is smaller and simpler than the SNES version, but still functions as a proper Raspberry Pi case.

See: Raspberry Pi Starter Kits

Putting a Raspberry Pi in the case couldn’t be easier – the two halves come unfastened in the box so you can separate the two. Inside you’ll find four screws and a couple of heat sinks in bags which you’ll need to remove. Place the Raspberry Pi inside the bottom half, replace the top half, and then use the provided screws to secure the halves together from below. Job’s a good ’un.

Flip the flap

While on the original NES the controller ports were located on the front of the machine, the USB ports on the Raspberry Pi aren’t quite arranged like that. In a rather ingenious move by Kintaro, the cartridge flap has been recreated on this case – simply flip it up to gain access to all the USB ports and the Ethernet port. Otherwise, all the important ports and slots are accessible while the Raspberry Pi is in the case, even the microSD slot.

The case is really useful for using a Raspberry Pi as a standard computer or a retro gaming system. However, even with the ‘vents’ on the side of the case, accessing the GPIO pins is tricky, and putting a camera cable through the USB flap isn’t ideal. While the case was not designed with this in mind, it’s worth mentioning in the event that you were planning to use this as your only case.

Last word

4/5

A great, simple case that might be good for your home media setup if you’re missing the elusive NES Classic Mini. Don’t get it for hacky electronics projects, though.