Retro style computer with 5 inch round screen, Framework laptop motherboard


After completing a DIY Raspberry Pi Zero 2W Laptop PC earlier this year, Penk Chen designed another rather strange but cool DIY computer. The “Mainboard Terminal” is a retro-style computer with a round screen powered by the motherboard found in the Framework Modular Laptop.

The computer has been tested to work with Ubuntu 22.04 out of the box with only a few configuration tweaks for the display, but other operating systems should also work given that the motherboard is Intel based. Core i5-1135G7, i7-1165G7 or i7 -Tiger Lake 1185G7 processor.

There are four main off-the-shelf electronic components:

DIY Retro Computer Frame Laptop Motherboard

Most of the work was therefore designing the enclosure, and Penk has posted the STL design files on Github under an MIT license for the motherboard terminal.

Since the display has an unusual resolution of 1080×1080, it must be configured with xrand:

He also installed cool-retro-term terminal emulator that mimics the old CRT and changed the curvature of the screen for aesthetic reasons by modifying the following line in app/qml/ApplicationSettings.qml:

All 3D printed parts are held together by 5 x 2mm magnets, but Penk suggests that some people may want to modify the design to add holes for screws and/or cutouts for USB 4.0 ports. A computer with a round screen will have limited use cases, but you have to admit it looks pretty neat.

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