Picade 10inch build experience

Recently got a 10inch Picade for my birthday and figure it might be useful to document the build and setup experience with issues I encountered and how I resolved them.

  • First impressions were very good, packaging super well organised and everything packed neatly
  • Except my joystick, came with 3 pins bent a good 45 degrees. I straightened them with pliers, seem to be working ok
  • Was initially worried when I saw the panels until I realised I was looking at the internal side which doesn’t have the same powder/paint coverage as the external. Actually thought it was mouldy at first!
  • Instructions are OK but not great, things get a little confusing around building the screen (I don’t think it ever mentions using screens for the bottom of the 10inch screen?)
  • Video “instructions” weren’t super useful, some well numbered and chaptered step by step video and web based instructions would be helpful (I recently built a Prusa SL1 and the step by step instructions are very good)
  • Not a fan of the dupont connecters for the X-Hat, they’ve got too much wiggle and at one point when debugging it turned out 2 of the joystick connectors just weren’t seated quite right
  • Could really do with some panel connectors were you can seat the nuts without needing to do that hand yoga in the underside of the console to screw those damned side screws in!
  • Had to lube 2 of my console buttons, they kept sticking when depressed
  • The position of the LCD driver board is far too close to the connector of the LCD. I ended up popping the wee ribbon connector latch off into the abyss trying to debug why the screen wasn’t coming on (does that tab even work from the other side of the connector?). Turns out the bend caused by the close proximity of the two connectors with a ribbon too long for the distance was making the connection a little loose - it’s been duct taped in place and works fine now
  • I’ve used a Raspberry Pi 4, but it doesn’t seem to auto detect the correct resolution of the LCD? not quite sure what it was autodetecting as resolution but after a while I noticed things were a little bunched up low res in the menus so I forced the correction resolution in my /boot/config.txt setting hdmi_group 2 and hdmi_mode 16 (1024x768 60hz) screen became immediately sharper
  • I have some noticeable light bleed in the top right and bottom right of my screen, worst in the bottom right
  • I followed the instructions to setup the HAT using “curl https://get.pimoroni.com/picadehat | bash”. Worked for the power button and sound but the button config caused some major problems. I’d setup my button configuration in emulation station and then when I went into a Libre based emulator that configuration seemed to just be completely ignored. I ended up manually configuring my /opt/retropie/configs/all/retroarch.cfg for input_player1 with information I found on this forum about what the button mapping should be (Picade button mapping issues)

Hopefully that information will be helpful - Overall I really like the Picade, my kids are getting a kick out of playing some classic arcade games now, but I don’t think I could recommend it to anyone that doesn’t have a decent amount of maker experience and a willingness to potentially macgyver a few solutions.

I’m not sure if this is included in the actual picade stuff you got but I’ll post a link. It’s the assembly instructions for the 10 inch screen.

And there are video’s here that might help the next guy. Some are I think a bit outdated though.

The text from the 2nd page of those instructions seems to be the same as what came in the box. It happens to mention on the first page

You’ll be using these M3 nuts and bolts (although just two of them) to hold the new 10” assembly together

But I don’t see any mention in the instructions to actually use them? I got to the stage were i’d screwed the console in and then realise there were some holes and had to unscrew the console to add the appropriate screws.

I’m pretty familiar with using the ribbon cable connectors as well having built a number of projects with similar screens/drivers but even when I still had the black latch intact the ribbon cable wasn’t making good enough contact due to the tight bend the ribbon needs to make. I may actually drill some new holes a little further down (1cm would probably be enough) in the perspex to reduce the cable bend stress

There have been a few complaints about sketchy build instructions. I don’t own a Picade, not yet anyway. Its on my wish list though.