Circuit Gem VMU

Show off your completed VMµ, or post your build logs here!
smoki86
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Circuit Gem VMU

Post by smoki86 » Sat Feb 23, 2019 10:57 am

Thanks Kite for these beautiful boards!

I still have my 2 working VMUs, one with satri360s board and one with just a button PCB which was supposed to become modular. Both I never play due to the lowres screen and weak sound on the first and because my own is so fragile.
So, I was waiting all week to have some time to do one with Kites board. I have a second one and my eye on a few special edition VMUs to do it justice.
This first one is going to be just the normal gray VMU.

- going to strip a pi zero W
- using either a random flat 400ish mah or a 453350 I have around (EDIT: I went with the 453350, 800mAh - tight fit but works without removing capacitors!!)
- EDIT: used a dremel 117 bit, it was soooo much faster then using the ones I had before and is the perfect fit for the job

I will post a few pics of the case mods Ill do and the progress in real time :)
123...go!
These 3 are going to be so great together!Show
vmu1.jpg
vmu1.jpg (296.9 KiB) Viewed 1424 times
EDIT: added some extra info
Last edited by smoki86 on Sat Feb 23, 2019 3:04 pm, edited 3 times in total.

smoki86
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Re: Circuit Gem VMU

Post by smoki86 » Sat Feb 23, 2019 12:43 pm

Electronics are done, did take quiet a while longer as I had to resolder a few bad points. But Pi is stripped and joined to the Gem, all working well :)

Short break and on to the case!
Going through the wiki stepsShow
vmu2.jpg
vmu2.jpg (104.02 KiB) Viewed 1415 times
Soldering!Show
vmu3.jpg
vmu3.jpg (177.28 KiB) Viewed 1415 times
It lives!Show
vmu4.jpg
vmu4.jpg (122.85 KiB) Viewed 1415 times
EDIT: I only removed the connectors, did not replace capacitors
Last edited by smoki86 on Sat Feb 23, 2019 5:04 pm, edited 4 times in total.

smoki86
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Re: Circuit Gem VMU

Post by smoki86 » Sat Feb 23, 2019 1:45 pm

And time :)

Thanks Kite for a very relaxing build!

And here are some pictures of the casemods and the assembled unit!
Remove seperator in lidShow
casemod1.jpg
casemod1.jpg (144.15 KiB) Viewed 1407 times
Remove pin to fit screenShow
casemod2.jpg
casemod2.jpg (117.12 KiB) Viewed 1407 times
Remove all the things!Show
casemod3.jpg
casemod3.jpg (364.13 KiB) Viewed 1407 times
Screen fits perfectly!Show
screenfit.jpg
screenfit.jpg (129.83 KiB) Viewed 1407 times
BacksideShow
back.jpg
back.jpg (162.71 KiB) Viewed 1396 times
And done!Show
vmulast.jpg
vmulast.jpg (146.57 KiB) Viewed 1407 times
Battery EDIT: It was a tight fit, but the 800mAh battery worked perfectly!
EDIT: So just short of 3 hours, I guess it can be done in 2, so, who wants to go next ? ;)
Last edited by smoki86 on Sat Feb 23, 2019 2:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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kite
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Re: Circuit Gem VMU

Post by kite » Sat Feb 23, 2019 1:58 pm

Nice one on the first to publish a full build! ;) hope you enjoyed it, let me know if you think of any room for improvement or any feedback at all! :D

smoki86
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Re: Circuit Gem VMU

Post by smoki86 » Sat Feb 23, 2019 2:43 pm

I didnt have time the last few months (and quite a few to come) to really get into this anymore, so this build has been so much fun again! Thank you for that :)

As for improvements: I would say you got all you can get into the little VMU. I just played a few games, the speaker is great, screen beautiful, software is great as well (I like the menu!) and everything feels solid now and during the build. No holes in the VMU as well, so it looks stock, which is great.
If you ever come across a screen that is an even better fit (small black bars) or even higher res and feel inclined to update, go ahead ^^ But this is not at all needed, it works perfect the way it is!

Maybe I will update this next week and add the extra buttons into another lid with a connector to play some snes games. This way I could just keep the extra lid with me and still keep the stock look :)

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kite
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Re: Circuit Gem VMU

Post by kite » Sat Feb 23, 2019 3:43 pm

When you are configuring the controls, when you get to X and Y, enable the menu and press RIGHT to enable ‘sleep/mode as x/y’ and then hide the menu, and map mode to x and sleep to y, then do the menu and press RIGHT to disable and continue as normal.

Once complete, you can enable with menu+RIGHT and the sleep/mode buttons will act as the x/y buttons! (As start/select is not used as often).. might help a bit!

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Re: Circuit Gem VMU

Post by smoki86 » Sat Feb 23, 2019 4:03 pm

Oh, so that is what that is about :)
I also saw the keyboard, which looks great! So, adding the two extra buttons will give us full snes controls, thanks!

I have a few business trips coming up, along with long flights and train rides - the VMU will make this so much more fun :)

EDIT: Just started playing a bit of Chrono Trigger in bed, its perfectly playable in this mode and works good enough on the small screen, I love it =D

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Re: Circuit Gem VMU

Post by smoki86 » Sun Feb 24, 2019 11:53 am

Sleep button was just a tiny bit too deep into the casing, making it really hard to press. It was almost flush with the casing. It doesnt protrude much when fixed compared to the mode button, but this is due to the fact that the case is curved.
So I went in again, took some pictures and removed more stuff:
ModsShow
morecasemodsandinsulation.jpg
morecasemodsandinsulation.jpg (353.29 KiB) Viewed 1319 times
Removed the two pins and made room for the soldering of the speaker (not really needed), also added a bit more insulation under the speaker
Bonus picture while I had it openedShow
openedvmu.jpg
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The difference is very tiny, it looks just fine without it, but that not even 1mm makes a big difference when playing :)

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kite
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Re: Circuit Gem VMU

Post by kite » Sun Feb 24, 2019 12:29 pm

You may have to cut away a little bit where the speaker goes, because it can touch that plastic horizontal bit in front of it (i think recessing your speaker further may already have helped here)

smoki86
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Re: Circuit Gem VMU

Post by smoki86 » Sun Feb 24, 2019 12:34 pm

I noticed that, but it does fit nicely when you dont glue it down and let it align itself. the board sits perfectly flush with the speaker in between before screwing it down, when I glued it in place I had to press it down.

EDIT: and I remember that I did run the edges and solder points of the speaker over my file at the very beginning out of habit, so yeah :)

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