[Frank] came up with a clever way to extend the storage of his PS4. He’s managed to store his digital PS4 games inside of storage devices in the shape of classic NES cartridges. It’s a relatively simple hack on the technical side of things, but the result is a fun and interesting way to store your digital games.

He started out by designing his own 3D model of the NES cartridge. He then printed the cartridge on his Ultimaker 3D printer. The final print is a very good quality replica of the old style cartridge. The trick of this build is that each cartridge actually contains a 2.5? hard drive. [Frank] can store each game on a separate drive, placing each one in a separate cartridge. He then prints his own 80’s style labels for these current generation games. You would have a hard time noticing that these games are not classic NES games at first glance.

Storing the game in cartridge form is one thing, but reading them into the PS4 is another. The trick is to use a SATA connector attached to the PS4’s motherboard. [Frank’s] project page makes it sound like he was able to plug the SATA cable in without opening the PS4, by attaching the connector to a Popsicle stick and then using that to reach in and plug the connector in place. The other end of the SATA cable goes into a custom 3D printed housing that fits the fake NES cartridges. This housing is attached to the side of the PS4 using machine screws.

Now [Frank] can just slide the cartridge of his choice into the slot and the PS4 instantly reads it. In an age where we try to cram more and more bits into smaller and smaller places, this may not be the most practical build. But sometimes hacking isn’t about being practical. Sometimes it’s simply about having fun. This project is a perfect example.

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14 Comments

  1. This would be a neat little product. Retro NES style 2.5″ hard drive cases plus a compatible SATA to USB 3.0 dock for a pc. I’d buy a few.

  2. or make it plug into an nes pc.

  3. In my head, the dock is shaped like the top loader NES that came out after the SNES.

  4. Or (cover your eyes if your squeamish) gut an old NES and cart, put a raspi emulator in the NES and 2.5″ drive in the cart, just have to get the controllers working.

  5. Or (cover your eyes if your squeamish) gut an old NES and cart, put a raspi emulator in the NES and 2.5″ drive in the cart, just have to get the controllers working. Oh yea, I love the old school artwork!

  6. Dr. Heinz Doofenschmirtz

    Yeah, I dunno about actual carts, so I used one that someone had already chopped up. It had some dip switches sticking out and the label looked handmade. I’m not certain what was going on with that. It looked like it toggled some sort of rom hack or something.

  7. For a second I thought that Grand Theftendo actually finally happened :/

  8. Forgive me for pointing this out, but wouldn’t a better strategy be locating old cartridges at flea markets, gutting them, then putting on a label of your own design? Yes, you have a 3D printer and that’s wonderful, but you’re creating what already exists and can be reclaimed.
    Inspirational, nonetheless.

  9. No. As a Nintendo collector i have to object to that

  10. Blue Footed Booby

    Yeah, the collectors object, but the world can survive with one fewer copy of Who Framed Roger Rabbit or MUSCLE.

  11. that pretty cool but isnt it easier just get a 1tb hD. love know what 3d printer he has . they come out pretty good

  12. frank26080115

    it’s a Ultimaker2, you can barely tell that the plastic is printed.

  13. Even more impressive hack: Unplugging the cart mid-game should cause the screen to glitch and the power LED to throb.

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