As early as 2019, we met mutantC for the first time, which is an open source 3D printable Raspberry Pi handheld device. [rahmanshaber] This draws more inspiration from the Sony VAIO Ultra Mobile PC (UMPC) in the early 2000s. This is an impressive first attempt, but it clearly has a long way to go before it can truly become a practical mobile device.
After two years of development and three iterations of this Linux-driven QWERTY slider, [rahmanshaber] Ready to show off the new and improved mutantC_v4. From the appearance, it is very similar to the original version, with a little thumbstick and a pair of programmable buttons on the right side notably added. In addition to the touch screen, it can also be used for input. But its interior is another matter entirely, with so many changes and improvements, we hardly know where to start.
Probably the most significant improvement is the addition of an ESP32-S2 to the main PCB, especially a bare ESP-12K module.The previous version of the hardware used Arduino Pro Micro to connect with all hardware, but the extra horsepower of ESP32 should be able to come in handy for the sensors, controls and NeoPixels array [rahmanshaber] Allocated to the chip. There is even a buzzer and a coin-type vibration motor to provide some feedback to the user. Although the board has undergone significant changes, it still retains compatibility with Pi Zero, 2, 3, and 4.
Another notable addition is the expansion connector on the bottom of the handheld device, which has pins for I2C, UART, and 3.3 V. In the video below, [rahmanshaber] It is mentioned that this function was previously implemented using a standard 2×6 female header block, but now it uses a slimmer female USB-C port.We do want to know if it’s a bit confusing to put this artificial USB port next to it real One is actually used to charge the system, but in such a narrow place, occasionally you have to make some difficult decisions.
Very inspiring, see how [rahmanshaber] Since the release of the first version of Mutant C, he has honed his skills. In the past two years, 3D printed parts and PCBs have become quite mature, showing how quickly a dedicated hobbyist can improve their capabilities. But the show is not over yet, because we heard that v5 of this impressive handheld device may solve the Raspberry Pi 4 computing module.