This retro gaming console is actually a mini PC disguised as a classic Macintosh

Nostalgia is a very powerful emotion, especially judging by the number of successful “retro” products sold in the market in the past years. Although the flood has seemingly trickled down a bit, it continues to flow especially in the gaming scene. Old gaming brands have suddenly resurfaced to bring nearly forgotten designs to the present, taking previous generations down memory lane while introducing today’s gamers to old-school experiences. While some of these retro consoles actually try to relive the past, this interesting and rather cute box might take your head for a spin with its Mac design and PC internals, combined to offer not just a gaming computer but a piece of desk decoration as well.

Designer: AYANEO

Compared to the computers put out by the likes of Atari and Commodore, the early PCs didn’t really have a memorable design that would go down in history as iconic computers. It was the original Apple Macintosh, instead, that captured people’s attention and imagination of what a home personal computer should look like. Of course, that was decades in the past, but the imagery has stood the test of time as proof of the design’s timeless character. AYANEO, a brand better known for gaming handhelds, is now taking that immensely popular design and giving it a rather curious twist.

As part of its AYANEO REMAKE concept line, the AYANEO Retro Mini PC AM01 slaps the old Mac design onto a new machine. The basic elements that have distinguished one of Apple’s earliest successes are there, tweaked a bit to avoid potential controversies, of course. There’s the telltale sign of a floppy drive, as well as a square rainbow badge that’s a nod to the old Apple logo. There’s a black rectangle near the top that’s purely cosmetic, denoting where the screen is supposed to be located. There’s nothing there, though, which is a bit of a waste, but it doesn’t really matter considering how the mini PC is used.

Unlike the Mac, the AYANEO Retro Mini PC is meant to lie down on its “back” rather than standing up, with that black rectangle in the rear. That’s because the ports for the computer are actually located on what would have been the top and bottom sides, so it has to be horizontal to actually be useful. Of course, this product is a gaming console anyway, not a standalone computer with a built-in display, so you’ll need to plug in peripherals to make it work. And yes, it runs Windows 11, which, given the eternal rivalry between Macs and PCs, some might find a bit insulting.

AYANEO has other retro designs also in the pipeline, including the Retro Mini PC AM02 that takes after the classic NES design. Curiously, that one does have a functional mini display since it can actually be used upright. It’s also working on a handheld that brings back the dual-display design of the not-so-old Nintendo DS, though the practical purpose of that second display is yet to be revealed.

This adorable miniature Macintosh is actually an innovative multi-functional docking station

Laptops have become so powerful that they’ve started to rival some desktops, except for the part that they’re forever limited in how many devices you can attach to them. At most, you’ll probably have five to seven, depending on how thin the laptop tries to be. It’s not really unusual for many owners to expand their portable computer’s capabilities using hubs and docks, especially now with the use of USB-C and the related Thunderbolt technologies almost everywhere. These accessories, small as they may be, still take up space on your desk and can be a source of distraction. So why not put an eye-catching and enviable design on that dock, turning it into a unique homage to the original Apple Macintosh, one of if not the first to blaze a trail for personal computing.

Designer: RayCue

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You’d be forgiven for mistaking this docking station as a fancy desktop toy, given how cute and attractive it is. The RayCue 128K is basically inspired by the design of the pioneering Macintosh from 1984, from its chunky and boxy design to its off-white paint job. There’s even a keyboard-like partner that uses the same motif to complete the faithful recreation. That design alone already makes it a worthy addition to your desk, bringing life and fun to your work, but it’s more than just a piece of eye candy. It is, after all, a docking station, but it goes above and beyond the call of duty compared to your standard docks.

The RayCue 128K Pro, for example, boasts 14 ports of different kinds, including three different types of USB ports, SD/TF card readers, an Ethernet port, a 3.5mm headphone jack, and not one, not even two, but three 4K 60Hz HDMI ports. As if that number wasn’t already impressive, these video out ports support DisplayLink Apple MST (multi-stream transport), making it possible to connect that many extra monitors to your MacBook. With a powerful DC-in capable of accepting up to 130W of power, the RayCue 128K can charge not only your laptop but also other devices for a total of 100W of output.

But as they say on TV, “there’s more!” The screen on the RayCue 128K isn’t just for show and is, in fact, a 3.5-inch IPS color screen that can display the time, calendar, media information, and even photos, turning the dock into a true decorative accessory to enhance your working experience. It doesn’t end there either, since the box also hides a Bluetooth Speaker, making it a jukebox to help keep your focus. It’s going to keep you entertained and productive and might even turn you into the envy of your friends.

Given how it works, you can’t really take the RayCue 128K with you wherever you go. That’s where the RayCue 128K Pocket comes in, a portable 7-in-1 hub that comes in the form of a miniature Macintosh keyboard. It might not have all the bells and whistles of the Pro dock, but it still has plenty to offer, including a 4K 60Hz HDMI port and card readers. If you’re going to put a docking station on your desk, you might as well put something that offers the best impact and experience. With the RayCue 128K Pro and Pocket, not only are you getting a powerful dock and hub, you’re also getting an adorable yet functional decoration that gives a nod to the personal computer that started it all.