Pandora Complete

March 30th, 2009 by Crusader

Gizmodo has linked a demo video of the first complete Pandora open-source handheld game console, which was available for pre-ordering ($329.99 US) last fall. Developed through internet forum discussion, the hardware specs are:

  • ARM® Cortex™-A8 600Mhz+ CPU running Linux
  • 430-MHz TMS320C64x+™ DSP Core
  • PowerVR SGX OpenGL 2.0 ES compliant 3D hardware
  • 800×480 4.3″ 16.7 million colours touchscreen LCD
  • Wifi 802.11b/g, Bluetooth & High Speed USB 2.0 Host
  • Dual SDHC card slots & SVideo TV output
  • Dual Analogue and Digital gaming controls
  • 43 button QWERTY and numeric keypad
  • Around 10+ Hours battery life

The video shows Quake 1 being played; if you’re interested in already available Linux handheld game device, there’s the GP2X.

4 Responses to “Pandora Complete”

  1. Conzar Says:

    Looks like an interesting device; however, why do they include a keyboard?
    I severely dislike typing on cell phone keyboards because you have to hunt and peck with your thumbs. Its also not very comfortable.

    Also, how do you get the various quake games to run? If you have the CD say for Quake 3, how do you get onto this device? Any talk about Quake Live?

  2. nod51 Says:

    The easiest way to play with be select it on the GUI menu (there are some videos out there), but if you want you can always use the Linux desktop (Ubuntu is an option, but there are others), open a terminal, thumb peck to cd to the quake directory and run it.

    As for using a CD, you could plug in a USB CDROM and play, or if you want to be portable, rip it to one of your local SC cards, mount it loopback and off you go. Though with the quake games I don’t think you need a CD to play, but if you did the statement still holds true. The USB is a full host adapter, but with more than 1 device you need a hub.

    I think the PSP emulator will be interesting follow development, they are not sure it can be done, and if it is it will be pushing the hardware to it’s limits.

    Granted you could plug in a USB/bluetooth keyboard and mouse, but then I could complain about the 4.3in screen, though there is a TV out adapter, but it is only 480p.. like the Wii…

    I ordered mine within hours of the preorder last year, but I won’t even take a guess to when it will be done.

  3. nod51 Says:

    a very useful link: with videos and much more updates than the official blog.

  4. clean3d Says:

    I can’t wait for the Pandora!

    @Conzar: I believe the keyboard was included because of the possibility to emulate older consoles and DOS games that used keyboards. They also upgraded the Pandora’s RAM enough that it can be used as a small netbook.

    If I understand correctly, Quake binaries will be provided in the repositories. You then take the data files off the CD and configure it so the binaries will use them.

    As for Quake Live, that all depends on how that game is distributed (which I don’t know). If it’s simple Flash within the browser, then in theory the Pandora could handle it. If it’s something more complex, then a port to the ARM platform might be needed.

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