Raspberry Pi 5 is twice as fast and ideal for my next retro console build

Raspberry Pi 5 will be available from October for a super low price

Raspberry Pi 5
(Image credit: Raspberry Pi)

Raspberry Pi has announced its next-generation mini-computer and it's the most exciting yet. Not only is the Raspberry Pi 5 the first to use silicon manufactured in the UK by the company itself, it is claimed to be more than twice as fast as the Pi 4 Model B. And all for $60 / £60.

I have been building retro games consoles from Raspberry Pi boards for a while now, having started with the Pi 3. I was also planning to build a new arcade unit using Pimoroni's Picade, but might have to pause until there's support for the Raspberry Pi 5 as it looks to be ideal for some old school gaming fun.

That's because it is built around a 2.4GHz quad-core 64-bit Arm Cortex-A76 processor, with a VideoCore VII GPU. That should be more than enough to ensure nigh-on every emulator runs – even up to PS3 and Sega Saturn.

The new board is also capable of outputting 4Kp60 video through dual (mini) HDMI ports, so it'd also make for a more than decent media streamer too.

Other key specifications include dual-band Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.0, microSD card support (of course), two USB 3.0 ports and two for USB 2.0. It would have been nice to see USB-C included for something other than power, but them's the breaks.

You do get an on-board power button though. You can't even imagine how happy this makes me.

Pricing starts at $60 / £60 for the 4GB model – around the same as the current Raspberry Pi 4 Model B – while the variant with 8GB RAM will retail for $80 / £80.

Pre-orders are now available, with the Raspberry Pi 5 to ship from "late October".

There are also cases and power supplies for the new mini-computer listed on retail sites, such as Pimoroni – you can therefore start your own console build for less than $100 / £100.

Emulators for the Raspberry Pi are easy to find, with RetroPie being a great place to start. You can then add your own game ROMs for multiple platforms – all legally sourced, of course.

After all, who doesn't like a project that eventually sees you playing the original version of Pac-Man and other arcade greats in your living room?

Rik Henderson
News Editor

Rik is T3’s news editor, which means he looks after the news team and the up-to-the-minute coverage of all the hottest gadgets and products you’ll definitely want to read about. And, with more than 35 years of experience in tech and entertainment journalism, including editing and writing for numerous websites, magazines, and newspapers, he’s always got an eye on the next big thing.

Rik also has extensive knowledge of AV, TV streaming and smart home kit, plus just about everything to do with games since the late 80s. Prior to T3, he spent 13 years at Pocket-lint heading up its news team, and was a TV producer and presenter on such shows as Channel 4's GamesMaster, plus Sky's Games World, Game Over, and Virtual World of Sport.