Bitboy review

Bitboy

The summer of 1998 – Years before the revolution of front-facing cameras and the duck-face pout, the Game Boy Camera was released in PAL territories.
Take photos of yourself, your friends, your dog; then maybe give them alien antennae and a pig snout, before putting a frame around it and printing it off, This was cool!

Unfortunately, unless you printed these off on the clunky Game Boy Printer and kept them safe, chances are they were doomed to be lost.

Without going through an arduous process of buying old PC components and trying to get your old copy of Windows XP to run smoothly long enough for it to work, there was no way to share your old photos with friends and family on social media, or simply ensure that your memories were preserved.

Flash forward to 2015, and news emerged that Alexander Bahr via his website GameBoyPhoto.com were developing the BitBoy; a device that, once connected to your Game Boy, would provide a simple process of transferring photos from your Game Boy Camera straight to an SD card.

The process is achieved by essentially fooling the Game Boy into thinking that it is actually a Game Boy Printer that has been connected, and so the camera sends the file over to the BitBoy, which saves it as a .BMP file on the SD card.

Upon opening the package the BitBoy arrived in, it all seems very minimal – a jiffy bag, the BitBoy, a micro-USB cable, and a 4gb SDHC card. There’s not even a manual, but GameBoyPhoto.com have one available as a free PDF file.

It’s all pretty straight forward and easy, but that manual explains any queries a user may have.

At the time of ordering, GameBoyPhoto.com also gave the option to order a separate USB transfer cable with the BitBoy; in case yours was lost to the sands of time (or more likely stuffed down the back of a cupboard or trapped under your bed), saving the hours of searching that would ensue when it came time to rescue your old snaps.

This, along with the pre-packed micro USB charging/transfer cable means that you’re all set to rescue your pictures, even if you are without a card reader.

The whole process is incredibly simple; as it requires no more input than it would have done to print the images all those years ago – and in doing so, brings back a lot of fond memories of printing your photos off as stickers for yourself and your friends.

You insert the SD card into the slot on the side of the unit, connect your Game Boy using the USB Link Cable, make sure your Game Boy Camera is inserted, and power it up! At this point it’s almost like muscle memory navigating to “View”, selecting the image you want, and tapping Right on the D-Pad to select print (making sure you’ve added all the stamps and frames you want first!), and then admiring the little Teddy Bear running on the beach ball while the professor takes notes. Very Nintendo.

To import the photos onto your computer, remove the SD card from the BitBoy and insert it into an SD card slot on your machine – or if you don’t have that or a card reader, simply use the Micro USB cable provided with the BitBoy to turn it into one! The SD card will be automatically formatted into a file tree that is simply “Game Boy Camera”, “00000”, and then your images. From there, it’s a smooth process of drag & drop before you open them in your viewer or editor of choice.

As well as the photos taken from your Game Boy Camera, the BitBoy can also rescue your achievements from Super Mario Bros Deluxe, Pokemon Yellow, The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening and several others, meaning all of your medals and Pokedex entries are ready to be shared with the world once again!

The images appear at a tiny 24kb in size, and 160x144px in resolution; and while this is incredibly small by modern standards of digital photography, it’s absolutely possible to work with these in any standard image manipulation program to simply increase their size, or to play around with them in any way you see fit.

bitboy friends

The images are produced in black & white using the 4-color palette of the Game Boy system and this all adds to the aesthetic of the images and the charm of the process itself.

I recently used one of my BitBoy photos as my Facebook profile picture, and received many admiring comments and curious questions from friends!

bitboy luke

Initially the BitBoy was only to be built and dispatched to a very limited number of pre-order customers (myself being one of them), however it now seems they’ve opened the gates to any and all comers.

With a current price tag of $100 + postage for the BitBoy itself, and a further $15 for the Link cable (currently out of stock at the time of writing), anyone can get their hands on the device and start to fall in love with the Game Boy Camera all over again.

The combination of simplicity, compact design (the unit itself measures in at a tiny 5cm x 4cm x 1.5cm!), and the metaphoric value the BitBoy provides in giving new life not only to the Game Boy Camera itself but also your long-lost photos, makes the device a brilliant little addition to the Game Boy’s arsenal – rejuvenating one of the long-forgotten peripherals of a revolutionary gaming device.

More information on the GameBoyPhoto is available via their
Facebook or Twitter at: @Gameboyphoto

Or you can head over to BigCartel to get your order in now.

Hope you enjoyed the review, it should be the first of many game related reviews coming soon (including the EverDrive for Nintendo 64, that I am currently reviewing). If you have any questions, please fire away in the comments!

Thanks,

Luke

ONEmicro wireless 5.1 surround system on Kickstarter

You may remember my previous review of the ONEmicro wireless portable DECT speakers, they use DECT technology to ensure perfect timing between left and right audio signals over a wireless transmission.

For lovers of surround sound and multiple speaker setups, a new ONEmicro wireless 5.1 surround system Kickstarter project has today been launched (10/01/2017).

By using their proprietary DECT based encoding and transmission systems ONEaudio are able to provide a truly wireless 5.1 speaker setup.

ONEmicro wireless 5.1 surround system hifi-audio

ONEaudio say that with the ONEmicro wireless 5.1 surround system they are able to fill a room up to 350sqft with dynamic 3d bass filled sound, this is thanks largely to the clear and correctly phased sound provided by the compact sized satellite speakers and the use of proprietary bass filling technique and their own twin driver 6″ ported subwoofer (also wireless).

ONEmicro wireless 5.1 surround system onebox-micro-music-server

The other part that makes up the ONEmicro wireless 5.1 surround system is a console box that acts as a sound server, using wifi for wireless CAS (computer as source) as well as connecting android and IOS devices wirelessly.

Using the consoles onboard storage capacity you should be able to store around 600 CD’s worth of music on the device as well as Hi-Res audio files to give an even better sound to your music.

If you require more storage for your music collection you can simply plug in a USB stick, adding a cheap additional source of storage.

The console also has standard NAS functions built in to the box, supporting local and network access.

Hopefully with the ONEmicro wireless 5.1 surround system, ONEaudio will be able to produce a setup that works as easily and as well as their previous speakers did, I loved the ease of connection as well as the speakers amazing phased sound output, not to mention the portability afforded to them by their great battery life.

The best part for me is that I will be able to use my existing ONEmicro speakers in the setup, which should hopefully allow me to save money on the full setup.

I look forward to getting a chance to sample them first hand in the not to distant future, for now you can read the press release below and check out the Kickstarter campaign.

ONEmicro wireless 5.1 surround system ces-innovation-award-and-dect-award-innovation

If the full ONEmicro wireless 5.1 surround system kit is as good as the speakers they will surely be on to another winner! and given the fact they have now won awards at CES and DECT for the technology my hopes are set very high.

You can read the full press release below and check out the Kickstarter campaign here

ONEaudio To Launch Kickstarter Campaign For The world’s only TRUE wireless surround No speaker cable, no power cord, ONEmicro surround turns your room into your personal theatre ONEaudio, developers of the new generation of wireless audio, recently announced that they are going to launch their Kickstarter campaign on 10th Jan 2017 of the world’s only TRUE wireless surround sound speaker with a small size yet big sound.

Currently, the so-called “5.1 wireless speakers” always need at least one wire to operate. True wireless theater speakers have always been a dream, until now. Using award winning DECT technology, ONEaudio has been able to remove all the cables in ONEmicro surround, for a full 3D surround sound with a simple setup.

The ONEaudio speakers have a small size but have the ability to deliver powerful sound. ONEmicro is wireless and compact size, perfect for any room of the house. Due to ONEaudio’s proprietary bass-filling technique and twin driver subwoofer, the satellite speaker ONEmicro can generate big 3D sound covering up to a 350 square feet living room.

ONEmicro is the smallest speaker in the ONEaudio series that has been widely reviewed and acknowledged for its full-bodied vocal, crystal clear sound, excellent sound imaging, and solid bass. The clear and accurately produced sound is similar to listening a live performance. Before the ONEaudio’s DECT technology, no available technology has been able to provide both ultra-low power consumption and synchronized multi-channel transmission from source to satellite speakers.

Only DECT can fulfill these two requirements. ONEsurround has got CES Innovation Award and DECT Award Innovation. The console box in surround system is also a music server, ONEaudio has adopted WiFi for wireless CAS (Computer As Source), connecting an iPhone or Android phone to the console box. Without messy cables, the speaker system can be simply set up and tidied up in a minute, due to the compact console box and wireless speakers combination.

Less time setting up, more time enjoying. The console also has 600 CDs storage and accepts Hi-Res audio files. It also supports both local and remote access, and standard NAS operation. The ONEaudio speakers can also be used outdoors because the speakers can be detached from the console box and the connection can be switched to the USB dongle making them perfect for a garden party, or when camping.