PC Club Builds Gaming Console - Kingswood Oxford

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April 17, 2023

PC Club Builds Gaming Console

It’s not all fun and games in the PC Club, where the team of 10 students built a major gaming console over the past year, comprised of a Play Station 5, X Box Series X, Nintendo Switch, and PC.  PC Club Advisor Dan Bateson said, “Every year, the PC Club gets together and picks a challenging project that future generations at the school will use.” In a largely democratic process, the students suggest various ideas and discuss the most compelling.


Several years ago, Will Jacobs ‘23 discovered the jacked-up gaming console through a company called Origin PC and was smitten. “I was drooling when I saw it; it was amazing,” he said. “I realized we had the opportunity to build a cool project throughout the year. I was like, ‘We’ve got to do that!’ It encompasses everything that we would need in terms of video games.” PC Club Builds Gaming ConsoleBateson said that once Jacobs shared the idea with the PC Club members, the conversation about creating any other project ended.


There was no official blueprint or instructions to download, just a photo of the original console from which the students had to work. The team started researching the parts and what they needed to do to take apart the consoles. This was the first time many on the team had built a pc. Admittedly, Bateson said, “We were winging it a lot of the time.”


Along with the photo of the console, the group had plenty of espirt de corps and tenacity to work through the various setbacks and challenges they encountered. Nathan Raap said the most difficult aspect was figuring out how to fit all the consoles onto one side of the unit. “We had to figure out where to put the PlayStation and how to fit in the Switch or if we wanted the dock in there.”

“It was quite the engineering challenge,” Bateson said.  “We had to 3D print some parts and modify the case itself. It was really fun watching the students troubleshoot all of it.”

Jacobs said it was an iterative process that took many attempts to get right. PC Club Builds Gaming ConsoleSince they were working with delicate parts, they had to make sure of what they were doing before they started cutting holes. “It was very collaborative. We had four or five of us working on the pc most of the time. We had a good team,” Jacobs said. The core group consisted of Jacobs, Rapp, Aman Kumar, Link Lee, Dom Brunalli, Cam Hart, and Piff LaBoy.


After deciding on this project, the team worked every other day on the build in free periods and club meeting days. Sourcing the parts proved tricky and delayed part of the project; however, the end result was spectacular. PC Club Builds Gaming ConsoleAlthough the primary goal was ensuring the device would work, its aesthetics were equally important. The unit stands approximately three feet high with 17 fans (eight on top, seven in front, and two in back) since the device produces significant heat. One side is transparent, where you can see the gaming devices. Some neon lights match each console’s distinct brand colors X Box is Green, PlayStation is Blue, and Switch is Red. Those colors are programmable through a pc interface. 


It was a daunting task but deeply satisfying. “At one point, Will stepped back during the project, Bateson said, “and said, ‘I never thought we’d be able to do this. The dream he had a year ago, and they all brought it to reality.” 

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