Forget the PlayStation Portal, this console modder turned an obscure PS1 controller into a pocket-size handheld

An original sony playstation SCPH-1002 console from 1994.
(Image credit: seeshooteatrepeat via Shutterstock)

Console modder Hairo Satoh has posted a video to Instagram that appears to show a working PlayStation gaming handheld constructed from an obscure PS1 controller.

As explained by IGN, this isn’t the first time that Satoh has tinkered with gaming tech. His Instagram profile is filled with photos or videos showing off interesting creations ranging from a custom Tamagotchi mobile phone to an incredibly bizarre looking Game Boy Advance SP with two folding displays. 

This latest creation, which Satoh describes as a "PS1 on the go," appears to be built using the obscure Takara Roulette Controller. In addition to many of the usual PlayStation controller buttons, the Takara Roulette Controller, which was released exclusively in Japan, originally featured a prominent color spinner that was used to play the PS1 version of The Game of Life.

Satoh seems to have managed to replace this spinner with a small color display that shows a functional emulator, presumably alongside plenty of internal changes to run it. Combined with working controls, it seems to be a fully-fledged handheld video game console. He even posted some short clips showing the handheld in action, playing through the first few moments of PlayStation titles like Resident Evil 3 and Mega Man 8.

In another post he detailed some of the device’s specs, which includes USB-C charging, a memory card slot, left and right triggers, a volume wheel, and dual stereo speakers. It’s clear that the handheld is a personal project, but its apparent offline functionality does pose an interesting point of comparison to Sony’s latest official handheld, the PlayStation Portal.

While Satoh's pocket-size custom creation seems like it would be perfect to take out and about, the PS Portal is a remote play device that requires a constant internet connection to use. While this limitation might be disappointing for some, we still think the PS Portal has plenty of merit. Our review praised its comfortable ergonomic design, not to mention the seamless performance when you’re connected to a high-speed internet connection.

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Dashiell Wood
Hardware Writer

Dash is TechRadar Gaming's Hardware Writer. Before joining TechRadar, he was a print journalist writing articles for some of the UK's biggest gaming magazines including PLAY, Edge, PC Gamer, and SFX. Now, when he's not getting his greasy little mitts on the newest hardware or gaming gadget, he can be found feverishly devouring the latest Nintendo Switch otome.