Jump to content
jeremiahjt

RetroN 77

Recommended Posts

I haven't messed with my Retron 77 beyond the day I got it.

 

To me, it is practically worthless. It's one big disappointment. You cannot use it as a test device for your cartridges since so many will not work (including my Superman cartridge), and the cartridges that do work are typically ones I don't want to play.

 

The only modern hardware device that I am still 100% enthusiastic about is the Flashback Portable. Yes, everything works off of ROMS on an SD card (no cartridge support), but it's amazingly versatile for such an inexpensive device (even has video outputs for a TV).

 

I haven't been following the VCS stuff for several months; was it all hype? I know it finally got released, but I don't see it as being a worthwhile investment.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
19 minutes ago, keithbk said:

The only modern hardware device that I am still 100% enthusiastic about is the Flashback Portable. Yes, everything works off of ROMS on an SD card (no cartridge support), but it's amazingly versatile for such an inexpensive device (even has video outputs for a TV).

The Retron can also play games from an SD card and since it uses Stella, is compatible with a lot more games than the Flashback. And the Retron is upgradeable to make it compatible with even more games (Galagon, for example). Sure, it's fun to actually plug a cartridge in to play (when it's one that works), but I mostly just look at the Retron as a convenient way to play games in Stella on my HDTV.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 hours ago, Atariboy said:

Before I try this, is it likely safe to use one of these arcade sticks with one of these OTG cables, connected to my Retron '77?

 

I've gathered from checking in this thread from time to time that going overboard with too many USB devices can cause issues with the stock power supply, with a powered USB hub I believe the recommendation if one wants multiple accessories connected like an AtariVox. Am I pretty safe with just a single USB controller, even if it's a big arcade stick that perhaps draws a bit more power than something simpler?

Decided I was being overcautious and hooked it all up. Works just fine.

Edited by Atariboy
  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is an odd thought, but has anyone attempted to alter the guts in the Retron 77 with actual Atari chips? I have an old Atari Jr. that the case has become brittle and is breaking apart. It would be cool to put the internals into a Retron 77.

Edited by keithbk
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That' like wanting to replace the display of a modern TV with a cathode ray tube. :) 

  • Like 1
  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don’t think that is fair. The retron 77 is much improved with the Stella firmware.  I didn’t even bother using it with the stock configuration. 


In an ideal world, a new redo (modern chips) 2600 with hdmi with a addition of a few modern features (wireless breakout box for existing controllers, for example) would be ideal, but for now the retron 77 (with community firmware) is pretty good overall.

 

I attempted to try to make a retropi 2600, but Stella is out of date, and there doesn’t appear to be a lot of interest to keep it updated with the latest Stella version. (They appear to be on their own schedule for updates).

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, Capt Moore said:

I attempted to try to make a retropi 2600, but Stella is out of date, and there doesn’t appear to be a lot of interest to keep it updated with the latest Stella version. (They appear to be on their own schedule for updates).

The problem is most likely always the same. Starting with 4.0 Stella switched to SDL2, which uses hardware acceleration. And that's where driver support breaks frequently.

 

@DirtyHairy went great lengths to get this working for the R77. Else it would be still stuck with Stella 3.9.3.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, Thomas Jentzsch said:

The problem is most likely always the same. Starting with 4.0 Stella switched to SDL2, which uses hardware acceleration. And that's where driver support breaks frequently.

 

@DirtyHairy went great lengths to get this working for the R77. Else it would be still stuck with Stella 3.9.3.

Thanks for the explanation.  I am not sorry I attempted the pi, but I went back to the retron as I consider it a much better solution for general users (such as me).  I am looking forward to the next version to hopefully fix the paddle issues I have with the current one (deadzone issue with paddles I mentioned previously.)

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Changes are explained here.

19 minutes ago, Capt Moore said:

I am looking forward to the next version to hopefully fix the paddle issues I have with the current one (deadzone issue with paddles I mentioned previously.)

Dead zones have been implemented for the next release.

Edited by Thomas Jentzsch
  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've updated the firmware on the Retron 77 and it does not increase the percentage of functioning Atari cartridges that work when plugged into the unit. I cannot even get Superman to work on it, and that was an early release.

 

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Forget the cartridge port, it is just a marketing gimmick. If it works (rarely), all it does is to dump the cart and provide the result to the Stella emulator.

Edited by Thomas Jentzsch
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 minutes ago, keithbk said:

Which is why I wondered if anyone gutted it to put actual 2600 parts inside to make it a genuine compatible.

Because you can't. The R77 is totally different to a 2600. There is a whole computer inside, which runs programs just like your smartphone or PC does. And in case of the R77, the program is the Stella emulator.

 

You could only use the R77 case and try to somehow squeeze in the complete 2600 hardware. But why would anyone want to do that?

Edited by Thomas Jentzsch
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
44 minutes ago, keithbk said:

Which is why I wondered if anyone gutted it to put actual 2600 parts inside to make it a genuine compatible.

It would be a waste of perfectly good 2600 parts. You could probably make them fit (Ben Heck has built portables by hacking up 2600s), then you'd just have a vaguely cube-shaped Atari 2600, and what would be the point? It wouldn't have HDMI output, unless you added a video mod and an HDMI scaler to it.

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, keithbk said:

I consider the Retron 77 borderline false advertising and junk, so I'm wanting to repurpose it.

Yet you're 100% enthusiastic (your words, not mine) about the Flashback Portable, which has an inferior emulator, inferior video output and build quality rivaling a Happy Meal toy.

  • Like 2
  • Haha 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 minutes ago, KaeruYojimbo said:

Yet you're 100% enthusiastic (your words, not mine) about the Flashback Portable, which has an inferior emulator, inferior video output and build quality rivaling a Happy Meal toy.

Ah, but it is a handheld and never advertised a cartridge system.

 

The Retron 77 is not a handheld. It is a system. And it doesn't work with most cartridges. If you're going to make something that advertises it works with cartridges, then it should do so. Otherwise, what is the point? I can hook up the latest Flashback system and get the same results running ROMS. Or I can hook up my modified 2600 and use the Harmony Cart to run ROMS. HDMI output is the ONLY plus with the Retron 77, but you can get HDMI with the Flashback 8 and forward. Even the switch placements on the Retron 77 makes little sense and are difficult to use.

Edited by keithbk
  • Like 2
  • Haha 1
  • Confused 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I couldn't disagree more.  NO Flashback system runs modern Stella.  NO Flashback system properly supports 2600-dapters.  The Retron 77 is literally the best thing going outside the real deal, and that *includes* the MiSTer.  Sorry you're unhappy with yours, but if you don't want it, feel free to send it my way.  I'd be happy to have a spare, because mine sees a LOT of use.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, Rodney Hester said:

I couldn't disagree more.  NO Flashback system runs modern Stella.  NO Flashback system properly supports 2600-dapters.  The Retron 77 is literally the best thing going outside the real deal, and that *includes* the MiSTer.  Sorry you're unhappy with yours, but if you don't want it, feel free to send it my way.  I'd be happy to have a spare, because mine sees a LOT of use.

I can run modern Stella on a PC (and it has HDMI outputs). Why would I want a box that does the same thing? That's not a reason to want a Retron 77.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
  • Haha 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, keithbk said:

I can run modern Stella on a PC (and it has HDMI outputs). Why would I want a box that does the same thing? That's not a reason to want a Retron 77.

It isn't?  I prefer gaming on a TV in a social setting versus scootched up to my PC, but to each their own.

 

I guess by your manner of thinking, consoles shouldn't exist?

  • Like 3
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Thomas Jentzsch said:

Changes are explained here.

Dead zones have been implemented for the next release.

Thank you so much for that.  Is there an anticipated time frame for the next release?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, keithbk said:

Ah, but it is a handheld and never advertised a cartridge system.

It's also arguably a piece of junk.

 

The Retron isn't what you were hoping for, that doesn't mean it's garbage. A case could be made that it's the best option on the market among devices that allow you to play games on your TV using ROM images.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Capt Moore said:

Is there an anticipated time frame for the next release?

No definite plans, but probably this year.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, keithbk said:

Ah, but it is a handheld and never advertised a cartridge system.

That's right.

 

10 hours ago, keithbk said:

The Retron 77 is not a handheld. It is a system. And it doesn't work with most cartridges. If you're going to make something that advertises it works with cartridges, then it should do so.

True enough.

 

10 hours ago, keithbk said:

Otherwise, what is the point? I can hook up the latest Flashback system and get the same results running ROMS. Or I can hook up my modified 2600 and use the Harmony Cart to run ROMS.

Yes you can.

 

Again, true enough. It simply sounds like the Retron77 isn't the right device for you. Not a big deal. You'll eventually come to terms with it.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...