Retro Lite CM5 Handheld

@GinKage and I have almost completed our Retro Lite CM5 based on the new Radxa CM5 compute module, so thought we’d share a few specs here. GinKage has been an incredible project partner to work with, so he deserves far more credit than I. There’s a couple little more software tweaks here and there we need to fully call this a completed build, but the end is closer than we could imagine.

All the assets are available here for download:

Hardware specifications:

  • 3D printable housing in PLA. Comfort grips for added ergonomics
  • Radxa CM5 Compute Module (8GB RAM/64GB eMMC)
  • SoC – Rockchip RK3588S octa-core processor with 4x Cortex‑A76 cores @ up to 2.4GHz, 4x Cortex‑A55 core @ 1.8GHz
    Arm Mali-G610 MP4 “Odin” GPU Video decoder – 8Kp60 H.265, VP9, AVS2, 8Kp30 H.264 AVC/MVC, 4Kp60 AV1, 1080p60 MPEG-2/-1, VC-1, VP8 Video encoder – 8Kp30 H.265/H.264 video encoder
  • WiFi 6/Bluetooth 5.2 via PCIe E-key slot (Intel AX210) -
  • 6 layer carrier board with 3 B2B mezzanine connectors to interface with any Radxa CM5 module
  • 5v boost rated at 3.5A continuous current
  • RP2040 gamepad - complete with SDL mappings and evdev gyro support/mouse control via MPU6050
  • 1280 x 720 (5.5" DSI IPS LCD): DSI video output on internal display
  • Up to 4k HDMI video output via HDMI output
  • Up to 4k DisplayPort Alternate Mode via Type-C
  • USB 2.0/3.1 capable USB-C data transfer
  • USB-C dual role port functionality (sink/source)
  • Brightness and volume HUD adjustment. Brightness is adjusted by holding plus hotkey + down/up. Volume controlled either by volume buttons or plus hotkey + left right DPAD
  • USB-C PD charging support via sink profiles supporting 5V/3A, 9V/3A, 12V/2A & 15V/2.6A (switch charger) via TPS65987D PD controller (see binary in TPS65987D folder). Recommended to use <12V for best charge and play performance
  • Stereo Audio Output via i2s. Dual stereo speakers with ported chambers
  • Headphone jack, with automatic switching
  • 5000mAh lipo, providing around 1.5-5 hours of gameplay depending on load (to be upgraded soon to >8000mAh)
  • Dual stacked shoulder buttons (L, R, LZ, RZ) with dual tact buttons for GameCube functionality (LR analog/LR digital)
  • 2x hall effect analog sticks running at 3v3
  • Resin casted ABXY, DPAD, start+select, shoulder buttons
  • Silicone membranes for nice button feel

Software specifications:

  • Armbian GNOME desktop (Kernel 6.1.57 as of this post)
  • Android 13 support (beta)
  • Full upstream Rocknix support
  • Wayland windowing system (xorg capable)
  • Hardware graphics support via Panfrost/OpenGLES (no Vulkan support… for now)
  • Safe software/hardware shutdown (either from software or via button)
  • Low power sleep mode - in my tests, 24 hours in standby mode draws around 6% of total battery life
  • Range adjustable joysticks in software by pressing plus hotkey plus R3 --> A --> rotate sticks --> A combination

For now, it will be time to iterate on the design and wait for my 8000mAh battery to arrive. GinKage also will hopefully build his in the coming weeks/month or so.

I hope you like the v1 design! The RK3588 is a powerful beast. Cannot wait for Vulkan drivers to see how much more performance we can squeeze out of it.


Wow, this is amazing! Finally it’s out. What if Radxa wants to license and manufacture this? Maybe let’s do a crowdfunding first?

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I would be happy to back it, this is a great project!

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Hi Tom,

Lets take this to e-mail/Discord with myself and GinKage if you’re interested in discussing further.

Amazing and complete project,
Would be great to have possibility to buy complete or DYI box to assembly :slight_smile:

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