Bootless Pi 400 Cyberdeck

Retro nostalgia Pi 400 cyberdeck for "jacking in," open source hacking, and remembering terminals, bulletin board systems and early Internet

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Powered by an overclocked Raspberry Pi 400 SBC with an integrated 12.6" ultrawide 1920x515 LCD display, RTC addon, and Orthopi custom DIY ortholinear mechanical keyboard with a rotary encoder for volume control and mute. Creating this deck has plunged me into a new community of hackers on Discord and into a wide spectrum of learning. So many firsts on this project including my first DIY keyboard and attempt at designing and making a case. I've made use of various Linux configurations, custom Python code, soldering, 3D printing (both FDM and SLA), parametric design and modeling, reading schematics, creating a bill of materials, ordering PCBs from China, and spending long hours hunched over a soldering iron or transfixed watching my printer crank out parts. I'm looking forward to logging my progress and setbacks here. The end goal is a compact portable cyberdeck for R&D with electronics and code.


  • Raspbian Linux (Debian)
  • Micro HDMI output to external monitor for dual screen
  • 3.5mm audio jack for headphones or speakers (via HDMI breakout)
  • Custom ortholinear mechanical keyboard with stylish keycaps
  • Rotary encoder volume control knob with push button mute/unmute
  • Ultrawide low power display integrated into case (with LCD controls)
  • Passive CPU cooling (aluminum heatsink and open backed case)
  • Quad-core 64-bit processor overclocked to 2.1GHz
  • 4GB of RAM
  • Wireless networking and bluetooth
  • 4K video playback
  • 40-pin GPIO header with color coded expansion adapter

Future possibles:

  • Internal battery and battery management system
  • "Side cars" for RPi GPIO breadboard and Arduino breadboard
  • Additional telemetry displays and sensors
  • Conformal coating electronics to withstand light rain
  • Screen protector
  • M.2 disk drive to replace sdcard for boot and data storage
  • Carrying handle and/or strap
  • External WiFi antenna?
  • Hydrodip


The Linux app "Cool Retro Term" completes my vision!

Graphics Interchange Format - 2.23 MB - 06/01/2024 at 03:21



Early rough draft of the case/shell

Standard Tesselated Geometry - 327.04 kB - 09/27/2022 at 17:56


  • 1 × Raspberry Pi 400 Or any SBC you like
  • 1 × Orthopi PCB
  • 1 × VSDISPLAY 12.6" NV126B5M-N41 12.6inch 1920X515 LCD Screen
  • 1 × uxcell Rotary Encoder Push Button Switch Key Switch Components, 6 Mm
  • 1 × whiteeeen DS1302 RTC Module Real Time Clock

View all 17 components

  • Daily Driver

    Charles Stevenson06/02/2024 at 19:36 0 comments

    I've cobbled it together enough to use daily. It's been fun playing with it the last several days. I'm hoping to redesign the case a bit eventually to get to a point where I can 3D print it without tremendous flaws and assemble it without hot glue and zip ties ;-)

  • Cool Retro Term

    Charles Stevenson06/01/2024 at 03:25 0 comments

    The app "Cool Retro Term" really brought my vision to life! When I run the app full screen it feels like I'm sitting behind the orange and black monochrome VAX/VMS terminal once more!

  • Primed and Sanded

    Charles Stevenson09/29/2022 at 00:59 0 comments

    I sprayed the PETG with automotive primer, filled some defects with spot putty, and sanded it. I've added another coat of primer. The vibration of the sander caused the epoxy to separate from the PETG along a few glue lines which is disheartening to me. I'll try gluing it up again tonight and painting it tomorrow. I'm thinking of using automotive undercoating which is a rubberized durable coating. I also found a can of orange paint that might go well with the keycaps.

    As a backup plan and hopefully something that will come out better I started tinkering with the design as something I could print entirely on the resin printer in 4 pieces that would glue together. Lessons learned from the FDM experiment show that some sort of rods/pins between the segments would be helpful so I've added holes for 3mm carbon fiber rod. Lychee slicer said 4 hours and the Photon Mono SE says 7 hours. I guess either way when I wake up I might see something like this with any luck! I am thinking of using the CNC to cut either plexiglass or fiber-reinforced plastic as a bottom plate.

    Edit: forgot to upload the F360 screenshot

  • Cured!

    Charles Stevenson09/27/2022 at 00:15 3 comments

    Well.. the epoxy cured overnight and I did a tiny bit of sanding. There are some significant surface defects from the print warping, layer lines, etc that will need to be filled and sanded. With some body work and paint it might just look good! Tomorrow I'll go on the hunt for filler putty, primer, paint, and fresh sandpaper...

  • Epoxy Time!

    Charles Stevenson09/26/2022 at 00:59 0 comments

    Getting a late start to the log... You've missed all the design steps thus far. I've really struggled with designing a case that could be 3D printed and easily assembled and upgraded. This is the first draft printed in 3 pieces because of the Z axis limitations of my good printer. Experienced some warping and corners coming off the bed... Need to learn more about how to go about designing for 3D printing and DIY assembly. Got any tips?? 

    For now I'm joining them together into a monolithic piece of plastic. The LCD will be VHB taped to the case. The Orthopi keyboard will drop in and sit on resin printed stabilizers/supports. See what the glue looks like in the morning. If it's a total fail then I'm back to the drawing board in Fusion 360 and/or fighting my printer.

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Enjoy this project?



Charles Stevenson wrote 09/27/2022 at 16:59 point

Thanks @Tom Nardi ! I agree they are really fun!

  Are you sure? yes | no

Tom Nardi wrote 09/27/2022 at 15:46 point

Loving the look here, lot of exciting possibilities with these ultra-wide displays.

  Are you sure? yes | no

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