After the 1088XEL and the 1088XLD, Myteks next project has taken a different tack. Originally to be a portable arcade like machine, the design has evolved and now we have the world’s smallest Atari 8bit instead.
Based on the Atari XEGS and upgraded with improved graphics output and an extra 512K of memory. This Atari boasts 2 OS slots and 4 Cart slots in the ROM. A PS/2 keyboard plugs in via a TK-II interface and even handles the On/Off functionality.
Michael came to me at the start of this project to see if I was interested in designing a case for it so I was lucky enough to get some input into the design right at the beginning so making a case was easier for me.
There was much discussion about the design of this Atari and it was eventually decided (after discussing Cart Tunnels, SDRive-MAX’s etc.) that an internal Fujinet would be a good idea and effectively make the NUC+ a self contained unit, with enough flexibility and power to make it an ideal machine for taking with you for a games night with friends or what have you. There is a board you can plug into the GTIA socket that makes the conversion to PAL simple, making this a great Demoscene and Homebrew games device as well. Perfect for meeting’s and parties.
The case needed to be as small as possible to maintain the ethos of the original design but still convey the personality of the machine.
The NUC and the skull
The NUC+ name came about because of the design of the board. Originally envisaged as a board the size of an Intel NUC (4″x4″) it wasn’t quite possible to fit everything into that space, even using (for the first time ever in a Mytek project) surface mounted components. The board had to grow a small amount, finally coming in at 4½”x 4½” the name NUC+ was born. Michael saw the Skull Canyon logo on the side of a NUC case and liked it enough to use it with a Fuji added for the branding of the NUC+. This logo appears on the bottom of the case but a couple of the team liked it enough to want it on the top of the case well so I have made variations that include a skull logo on the lid too.
A wordmark was required to fit the case. It needed to be 3D printable, contain NUC+, include the memory of the machine to fit with the 1088XEL/XLD machines and identify itself as an Atari. Lot’s of variations were discussed before the beta team finally all settled on the current design.
There was a fair amount of disagreement about how to implement the Fujinet internally and eventually I took over the design of that board to maintain the design aesthetic that both Michael and myself had for the project. Please see the Fujinet Daughterboard page for more info on that board.
So we had all the components necessary to come up with a design for the case. I wanted to acknowledge the XEGS’ness of the NUC+ but I know a lot of people prefer the XL or 400/800 styling so this is a late beta rendering of what I came up with.
Beta Case Designs
Everything is designed to print without supports, at 0.2mm layer height with a 0.4mm nozzle. One design I cannot print myself! The two colour XL styled case is designed to print in a dual hotend printer and I don’t have one of those. Marlin at the Brewing Academy does have a printer capable of printing this case and I’m excited to see how it looks in real life.
Here are a few photos of the current case design. This page will get updated as things progress.