The MiSTer Mini-ITX Ironclad Plus is the best and first solution to make your MiSTer FPGA setup completely yours. Take any Mini-ITX, Micro-ATX, or ATX (who said smaller is better) case you like and transform it into your definitive retro gaming machine, you can also go nuts and use your imagination to mod the case as you want, add RGB, transparent panels… The choice is yours and that is what all of this is about; freedom and choice.

Highlights:

Compliant with the Mini-ITX standard, no modding needed or adjustments, even the back i/o shield is included.

No over-complicated things or expensive unnecessary stuff, assemble, install, and play the best possible way. User experience is key here.

Adds physical, electrical and thermal protection to your DE10-Nano board.

All main MiSTer addon boards in a single board, except SDRAM module by default.

Full SNAC official compatible plus SNAC Extension. Enjoy the fully integrated, TRUE zero lag, controller/lightgun/joystick experience.

Mega Drive II / Genesis II RGB compatible AV Out for the highest quality available and single A/V cable wiring.

User friendly installation and future proof to some extent, thanks to its detachable individual interconnects.

Use the single power button on your case to power on/off the Mister, which also acts as “reset”, osd and “usr” buttons. Simple and efficient. It just works!

Clean interior design, because transparent side panels and RGB are a thing!

Now your wife/husband/partner will be more lenient about letting you having your retro gaming stuff hooked to the main TV ;p

(This pictures are from a pre-production testing model, there might be differences in the final model)

Full Features:

  • Fully compatible with any standard Mini-ITX, Micro-ATX, or ATX case.
  • Modification-free. Assemble and install inside your case and you are set, just like with any standard PC motherboard.
  • All functionality of the official Analog I/O board, USB hub with seven ports, Real time clock, Tape In, and SNAC is included in a single board.
  • Built-in Real Time Clock module, an often overlooked but powerful feature!. The MiSTer allows savegame syncing with the cloud, but how does it know which savegames are newer than others if your MiSTer is not always connected to the internet while playing and creating such save game files?, the answer is the RTC module, enjoy the cloud sync feature without worrying if your save game files are syncing correctly or not, you will always get the latest file replacing the older ones, not the other way around.
  • Compatible with ANY model of SDRAM module in the market. Space or orientation is not a problem for this.
  • Ensure the MAXIMUM analog video quality using the built in Mega Drive II/Genesis II/32X video-out connector for RGB/YPbPr, not compatible with composite or s-video. Finding very high quality Scart cables is not easy, they are never double shielded and wires are thin for space reasons, just like VGA cables, they have simply too many conductors inside a single cable. On the opposite console double shielded ultra-high quality cables are readily available from sellers like RetroGamingCables.co.uk, and they also carry stereo sound!. Say good bye to “buzzing” sound and picture noise.┬áThis connector is far less prone to connection problems than Scart sockets.
  • DB9 connector User port with SNAC official plus extension. Use your Genesis/MD/Atari original controllers/lightguns directly without adapters, SNES/PCE/Neo-Geo, etc are also available. Official cores SNAC is supported for gamepads lightguns, and everything available at the moment, also SNAC Extension capability is included to unveil the true power of this interface allowing 2 players and more retro controller versatility. You can also connect your MT32-pi directly to this port, your choice!.
  • Custom made user-transparent Bios controlled functions using a fast MCU to keep things fluid and seamless
  • All three MiSTer FPGA I/O buttons, “Reset”, “OSD” and “User”, are interfaced to the case “Power” single button. Depending on how many “clicks” you do, or for how long you press on the button it does one function or another. If the case also has a “Reset” button, reset functionality is also directly available on it. another duplicated “Reset”, “OSD” and “User” individual buttons are soldered directly on the board, with adjacent pin header holes in case you need them to make your dream’s build come true.
  • Additional protection for your MiSTer FPGA!. The Ironclad provides over-voltage/short-circuit/over-current protection to your beloved DE10-Nano board, it also controls power-up and power-down cycle to make it softer and safer than the usual hard switch on and off. Besides that it watches the installation has no critical mistakes, in which case it will cut the power to your DE10-Nano and flashes the led/beeps the buzzer to warn you.
  • Even more protection!. Featuring a “Smart Fan Control” the Ironclad Plus detects how hot your FPGA is running, and control the fans connected to its PWM (4-pin) headers accordingly while keeping the noise as low as possible. If temperature rises to dangerous levels, it will warn you flashing a led and turn off your DE10-nano safely if the situation continues. Setting fans speed manually is also available in 8 selectable speed levels.
  • Internal USB port for internal storage and two USB headers for front case USB connectors.
  • Cassette audio input connector to enjoy the feeling of being loading the original stuff, hummm.
  • Compatible with internal “PC Speaker” or “piezoelectric buzzer”. Core dependant, like the Amiga one to simulate floppy access noises. The Custom BIOS also makes a nice “beep” sound when booting successfully, emits various tones when the user interacts with the buttons, and uses it for other warnings like thermal or boot/installation errors.
  • HDAudio standard header on board for front case audio input and amplified headphones output plus I2S audio enhancement plug-in module expansion, more information on this BELOW.
  • Compatible with 20-pin or 24-pin ATX power supply or Pico-PSU. Please always use reputable power supplies for all your electronics.
  • Future proofing!, thanks to its detachable individual interconnects you can remove one and install an addon accessory released in the future if you want, or use dual SDRAM modules if a future core needs it. The choice is yours.
  • It has the usual “SOG” switch in form of an internal jumper, and VGA voltage select 3.3/5v jumper for accessories like the RGB to composite/S-video adapter.
  • Cleaner audio and image output, The Mini-ITX Ironclad Plus uses separate power lines to run fans and other components prone to cause electrical noise, so analog outputs are as clean as they can possibly get.

The Audio Expansion Connector:

The Mini-ITX Ironclad Plus sports analog and digital audio out, just like the official I/O board, using a dual purpose female audio jack connector. The Ironclad additionally features analog audio out through the Console A/V out connector. Digital audio out is just perfect quality wise, while the Sigma Delta DAC built in the DE10-Nano have a more standard sound quality, but it can sound pretty good also!. The Mini-ITX Ironclad isolates the analog audio signals from other electrically noisy sources, like fans, and uses Panasonic caps at the output, that is why it sounds like this by default with no additional audio modules or enhancements attached:

Sonic 3 & Knuckles, Genesis core, no-filter.
Metal Slug 3, Neo-Geo core.
Actraiser, Super Nintendo core.
Street Fighter Alpha 2, CPS2 core.

It sounds pretty good right?, but i know there are a lot of audiophiles out there who only want the best of the best, and that is why i built an interface on board to support an audio enhancement module; The IRONCLAD BLASTER FX.

Connecting this module adds an I2S DAC to your Ironclad Plus which improves the analog audio out quality of all connectors. It is plug and play, connect it, flip a switch on your DE10-Nano and you are set. having this module on board also enables the headphones amplified audio out for front panel connector on-board (the HDAUDIO header). The Ironclad Blaster FX is still being developed but will be offered with free shipping costs to buyers of the Ironclad Plus who bough the board before the release date of the Ironclad Blaster FX. The audio expansion connector on board can also be used to connect your I2S dac board of choice, also plug-and-play, no modification needs to be done to the Mini-ITX Ironclad, instructions about this will be provided in the online manual of the Ironclad Plus.

Assembly and Instructions:

Complete guide available HERE

Pricing and sales:

UPDATE: The MiSTer Mini-ITX Ironclad Plus is already out click HERE to purchase!

The Mini-ITX Ironclad Plus will be assembled and tested in my own workshop by myself and a couple of technician friends, so there will be a limit of units we can manufacture each month. There will be a pre-order system at first, with a limit of units for each batch, as i want that everybody who paid for his board, has it shipped in about a month. New batches will be offered for pre-order as the previous batch is being finished and shipped, i will update about this via Twitter and this web’s “News” section.

This page will probably be updated, changed format, more info added, new pictures uploaded, etc, during the next days, i am sure i still forgot something to write here, so stay tuned, and thank you very much for your interest!