Relive Retro IBM PC Glory Days In Emulation With This Tiny $10 Microcontroller

We're big fans of retro gaming (which is our way of saying some of us are old fogies), and so we always get a thrill when someone shows off a project that is a throwback to bygone eras, be it the venerable Commodore 64, Amiga systems of old, or whatever else. Or in the case of a recent project shown off in a YouTube video, the IBM PC.

For the past couple of years, YouTube user Fabrizio Di Vittorio has been sporadically uploading videos based that are essentially odes to earlier times, often with an ESP32 microcontroller. That is the case with his latest project, which details an ESP32 underpinning a retro project aimed at emulating the IBM PC in all of its former (and timeless) glory.

"Emulating an IBM PC with ESP32 (with PSRAM and SDCARD). No other modules required," Fabrizio explains.

The ESP32 series of modules are remarkable little things. In this instance, several common chores are "fully handled by the ESP32," including video and audio chores, keyboard and mouse input, and SD card duties.

Fabrizio goes through the process of getting things set up and configured on the software side, as you can see in the video above. In addition, he posted a seven-part series that showcases various programs and applications running on the system, including QBASIC, GWBasic, FeeDOS, Windows 3.0, MS Word, Flight Simulator (not the newest Microsoft Flight Simulator, of course), SimCity, and more.

Here is one of them...

Simply put, this is a really cool project, and it appeals to our sense of nostalgia for earlier days in computing. Big hat tip to Fabrizio, and we'll be sure to keep an eye out for any future projects he embarks on.