Electronics
Browsing Category

Electronics

Everything I Used for My RetroPie RaspberryPi Bartop Arcade

October 5, 2017 0 comments

In January 2017 I learned about RetroPie and RaspberryPi emulation.  I first started off creating a RaspberryPi that connected to my TV and used the Wii PRO Controller.  I’ve always been into emulating old classic consoles however it never seemed right playing them on my phone or computer.  After I tested different images and different components I started reading up on bar top arcades.

In March of 2017 I’ve watched tons of Youtube videos and joined several different Facebook groups where users have already created their own bartops.  I started to plan out and piece everything I would need to purchase to make a complete RetroPie Bartop Arcade machine.

My bartop arcade is running a RaspberryPi Model 3 board using  RetroPie/EmulationStation/HyperPie

The Outside
The Inside
The Audio

Cabinet Cooling
Display
Power
Other
Completed

Streaming Bluetooth Audio in Nissan Pathfinder 2016 SV Model

May 2, 2017 2 comments

So I recently picked up a 2016 Nissan Pathfinder 2016 SV model.  One of the features it had was Bluetooth advertised; so I figured Ok it has Bluetooth media streaming capabilities built in.  I was upgrading the wife’s car from a 2013 Nissan Sentra which had it no problem.  After we got the car and hooked up Bluetooth I noticed it only had Bluetooth calling capabilities.  I Googled my issue and noticed several other people with the same problem.

I guess you need to purchase the higher end upgraded model or the Platinum edition which is about $15,000 more for the feature.  After I did some research I saw the car had on-board AUX / composite hookup’s as well as a USB port.

I tried (2) different methods:

Method 1:  This involved a USB Bluetooth wireless audio adapter and 2 x RCA Male, 1 x 3.5mm Stereo Female Connector

HIGHFINE USB Bluetooth Wireless Audio

Purchase for $8.69 on Amazon

2 x RCA Male, 1 x 3.5mm Stereo Female, Y-Cable 6-Inch

Purchase for $4.89 on Amazon

So this was the first method I tried because I figured it would be the easiest.  However the Bluetooth adapter just plain sucked it took about 3-4 minutes to connect the phone and was so inconsistent.  Also I noticed I would have to type the RCA hookup because when it moved the audio would fade in an out.  So I ditched that idea and check out my Method 2 below.


Method 2:  This is actually what’s pictured in the posts image.  It’s a little messy but I didn’t clean or zip tie anything up i just wanted you to see the initial setup.  This setup also does not require the USB port however it requires you to use your Cigarette lighter for power.  My wife likes to charge her phone in the car so I figured I would buy a Splitter so it would control both.

Kinivo BTC450 Bluetooth Hands-Free

Purchase for $34.99 on Amazon

NOCO GC020 12V 2-Way Splitter

Purchase for $8.95 on Amazon

2 x RCA Male, 1 x 3.5mm Stereo Female, Y-Cable 6-Inch

Purchase for $4.89 on Amazon

So this method worked the best and surprisingly it worked better than I expected it to.  My Smartphone instantly connected to the Kinivo BTC450 Bluetooth Hands-Free device every time without any delays.  What’s cool if you have both your phone connected to your Cars “Bluetooth Calling” and the Kinivo device it will pause your music and allow you to answer the phone call (this was a must).  What kinda sucks is that you cannot use the steering wheel controls to control the Next/Previous playback.  However on the Kinivo device were ever you decide to mount it has controls for Next-Previous-Stop-Play.


Setting Up Your Smartphone to Auto Stream

My next step was I wanted my device to immediately start playing Spotify when the Bluetooth connection was present.

You need to download Bluetooth connect & Play on your Android Smartphone Device.

Then you want to choose the Bluetooth device in this case mine was the BTC450 then I had it Auto Play spotify.  You can choose whichever media service you are using from Google Play Music, Spotify, etc.  There are several other applications that will accomplish this from:  Trigger Task LauncherAutoplay for Spotify  I’m still testing to see which application works the best and works all the time.  If you have any questions, tips or comments post below.

Faster RetroPie Scraping

January 26, 2017 0 comments

Since I jump from different projects every single day I decided to purchase a RaspberryPi and try out the RetroPie emulation software.  The software allows for playing classic video game consoles such as Nintendo, Super Nintendo, Atari 2600, Atari Lynx, MAME Arcade games, Nintendo 64, Sega MegaDrive, Sega Genesis, Nintendo 64 and PlayStation 1 and many more.

I loved the whole idea that it would showcase the different games cover art.  However when you have over 3000+ games installed I couldn’t sit there for days and continue to hit the “A” button to download the correct metadata.  Since Google is amazing, I decided to browse for an easier method of grabbing all of the metadata.  I came across this blog by Stephen Selph

This is an auto-scraper that runs from a command line that supports:
NES, SNES, N64, GB, GBC, GBA, MD, SMS, 32X, GG, PCE, A2600, LNX, MAME(see below) ROMs

I decided to write my own tutorial on how to achieve this using his software.

Step 1.  The first step you need to do is make sure your RaspberryPi is connected to the internet either via Ethernet or Wireless (ethernet) preferred.

Step 2.  We now need to find out our RaspberryPi or RetroPie’s current IP address.  You can find this out by going to the main menu of the RetroPie interface and choosing “Show IP Information”.   If you can’t find this screen you need to go to your system console list and choose “RetroPie” this is how you access the RetroPie interface menu.  Choose “Show IP Address”.  You should now have your IP  i.e  (192.168.1.2)

Step 3.  Now you need to download Putty so you can SSH into your RaspberryPi / RetroPie.  Once you have downloaded and installed Putty, launch the Putty application and enter your RetroPi’s IP Address information.  Then Press “Open“.

Login as username “pi” and password “raspberry”.

You are now successfully logged in to your RetroPie

Step 4.   Next you want to make sure no instances of EmulationStation are running.  Type the following command and press “Enter“.

ps -u pi

If your screen looks similar to the above and you do not see “EmulationStation” your good.  If EmulationStation is still running you need to use the following command to End it.

killall emulationstation

Step 5.  Next we need to install the proper scraper script.  Navigate to https://github.com/sselph/scraper/releases Since i’m using a RaspberryPi 3 I’m going to install:  https://github.com/sselph/scraper/releases/download/v1.2.1/scraper_rpi2.zip.  Now we are going to use the following command to install the script to RetroPie.

wget https://github.com/sselph/scraper/releases/download/v1.2.1/scraper_rpi2.zip

Type in the code above and press Enter, you should see something similar to the screenshot below.

Step 6.  We now need to unzip the script that we just transferred to the RetroPi.  Do that by type in the following command and pressing Enter.

sudo unzip scraper_rpi2.zip scraper -d /usr/local/bin/

You should have something similar to the screenshot posted below:

Step 7.  Alright now that the script is installed and unzipped on your RetroPie, it’s time to put it to use.  You have 2 options you can scrape all the consoles or you can navigate to the specific console you want to scrape.  So in this tutorial I started with SNES (Super Nintendo).  Follow the following commands to get you there:

cd RetroPie
cd roms
cd snes
ls

Running the last command once you are in the SNES directory will display all of the ROMs you have installed on your RetroPie.  Like shown below:

Step 8.   Now we are going to run the following Scraper command to scrape all the metadata for the SNES directory.

scraper -thumb_only

You should now see something similar to the screenshot above.

Step 9 (Optional).  If you want to scrape all of your consoles run the following command.

scraper -scrape_all -thumb_only

Once you reboot your RaspberryPi or RetroPie, you should notice all of your cover art successfully downloaded.

Additional Info

You can find the scraper here:
https://github.com/sselph/scraper

You can scrape all systems with this command:
https://github.com/sselph/scraper#all-systems

YouTube Video that Helped a lot: