July 23, 2015 | By Alec

Sick and tired of playing with your PS4 on the floor of your living room? If so, you might have come across some of the interesting builds the Florida-based electrical engineer Ed Zarick sells through his website edsjunk.net. His latest creation is especially remarkable, as he has transformed a PlayStation 4 into a R2D2-themed PLAYBOOK 4, complete with a laptop screen and all the R2D2-esque features and sounds you can think of.

As you might now, Zarick specializes in ‘laptopifying’ consoles, which essentially revolves around a custom-made laptop casing (with 3D printed parts) and screen that is a bit more bulky than most laptops you see around nowadays. That's because it's completely filled with all the hardware of a regular PS4 or XBOX 360 plus a laptop screen. And just like a regular console, it's a cool and powerful plug-and-play machine, but then functions as your laptop. Somewhat ironically, however, you can still plug this bad boy into your TV for a traditional PS4 gaming experience.

While quite a few people enjoy hacking game consoles, Zarick actually does this as a part-time job and has enjoyed quite a bit of success. ‘I am a self taught engineer I would say,’ he tells 3ders.org. ‘I did not go to school for design, and learned everything from trial and error and helpful internet articles. Gotta love that! I work full time as a EMT/FireFighter, so on my off days I work on my projects like this PlayBook.’

But this particular R2D2 themed playbook is something else, and was built because Zarick simply wanted to do something different with the theme. ‘I must say, this has been my most favorite system to work on to date. It kind of pays respect to the R2 XBOX 360 system a while ago. A R2-D2 Theme has been a lot of fun and I was really abe to use my imagination on this guy,’ he writes on his website. ‘This system has real scaled down R2 parts installed everywhere!  It even has the red/blue light on the front that changes randomly while its on! And with the help of a Adafruit WAVEShield, I was able to have this little guy actually talk.’

As he explains to us, all the design itself was his own work. ‘I do all my design work for this system in Inventor and Illustrator,’ he tells 3ders.org. ‘It took a lot of time to get all setup and original files designed. The R2 unit was based off my prior systems, so I already had a base to work off of. So after some brainstorming, I started putting R2 into my design and was good to go!’ While the original process of designing a PLAYBOOK or XBOOK takes about a month, this R2 system took about an extra week.

Essentially, the main part of the PLAYBOOK is made from laser cut acrylic (which gives a cleaner, more professional look for large surfaces), but all the accents, decorations and R2D2 add-ons have been 3D printed.'The Acrylic gives a lot cleaner look than layered 3D prints, so it works better in some circumstances,' he explains. All these parts have been 3D printed in ABS plastic on his three MakerBot Replicator 2Xs, taking about a combined time of 20 hours.

Now if you love the look of this PLAYBOOK 4 and just need it to complete your Star Wars collection, there’s some good news. Zarick didn’t build this machine as an order for a client, but just as a fun challenge. It probably won’t come cheap – a regular PLAYBOOK 4 costs $1,500, so this will likely be more expensive than that. Check out Zarick’s website for ordering information. Zarick, meanwhile, has already become inspired by this fantastic Star Wars design. ‘I am wanting to now build a Storm Trooper designed PlayBook and also looking at building a 1:1 scale Full animatronic R2-D2,’ he tells us. Still, can you imagine playing the upcoming Star Wars: Battlefront (release in November 2015) on this cool construction? 



Posted in 3D Printing Applications



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