Handheld Emulation

Discussion in 'Retro & Arcade' started by jimbogimp, May 8, 2019.

  1. jimbogimp

    jimbogimp Member

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    Wassup.

    Have any of you folks gone down the handheld emulation station road?
    The Retroflag Gpi case popped up in my tube feed recently and I got unnecessarily excited about it.
    I'm keen to make one for my daughter so I can get her off the tablet and into some "real gaming" rather than those dumb put the hat on the cat & watch the ad to unlock the shoes games.
    Or like, more realistically ... so I can play it...

    The retroflag one is not available yet so I started a bit of a search around for an alternative & found quite a few DIY projects like this one , this one , or this one (until I found out it had no sound) all of which look doable but a bit more complicated than the retroflag option.

    The pre-built ones on ebay seem too expensive for my liking. But of course there's the super cheap $30 like this one which is a "great gift for your parents kids children, friends" which is pretty tempting. But I know I'll regret that.

    Maybe getting an actual PSP or DS or something would be better.

    So yeah, has anyone bought or built one and what was your experience like & what would you recommend?
     
  2. FIREWIRE1394

    FIREWIRE1394 Member

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    PSP was always great for emulation back in the day, no idea if it's been topped by cheap stuff yet. but you could pick one up pretty cheap these days possibly even pre modded.
     
  3. elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    I used my DS Lite for a while as a Gameboy, Gameboy Color and Master System emulator. Worked OK for those very simple systems, but couldn't cut it for faster systems.

    Worth noting that Nintendo quietly increased the clock speed of later model DS hardware. The DS Lite clocks in at 67MHz, and the DSi at 133MHz (same ARM9 processor in each). Videos on YouTube show that SNES and Megadrive emulation work a lot better on the DSi.

    Pretty sure you can pick up a DSi for peanuts these days, and an R4i card off eBay to go with it.
     
  4. power

    power Member

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    there's a couple of YouTubers who focus on some of this but the PSP is the current ultimate machine for this however I imagine the Vita will surpass it in years to come, but for a young 'un this stuff wouldn't be where I'd go.

    I bought a GP2X off the forums a few years ago and it gives me my fix still if i don't another machine with me, it's a great machine for what I want to play emulation wise, Runs SNES/MD/MAME all quite well.

    For the kids, man I'd recommend a 3DS eh. Robust, great battery life HUGE library and big community. If you don't want to mod the Virtual Console is cheap and decent, or you can just buy heaps of DS games for cheaps. My 2c.
     
  5. elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    Sad story incoming:

    Prior to kickstarter existing, I funded the Pandora in its design infancy. That wasn't cheap - somewhere in the order of AU$400 for an early model, I think?

    Anyways, the design and engineering took a lot longer than expected, PayPal got shitty and started denying them access to funds, and it all turned south. The devs were very open and honest about it, and did what they could to refund everyone's money. The downside for me was the Aussie dollar swung against my favour, and I lost about $100 all up, even with the refund.

    Worse - I never got my device. And, of course, now you can get equivalent devices for a fraction of the price.

    Lesson learned - never back anything. Wait until commercial availability, don't get impatient.
     
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  6. power

    power Member

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    or buy a second hand one :)
     
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  7. power

    power Member

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  8. elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    Another one I follow. Weird Dutch guy who loves collecting Chinese crap:
    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCW_sIU3MaWW5cXSjGqNIvbw/videos
     
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  9. OP
    OP
    jimbogimp

    jimbogimp Member

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    Thanks dudes. I checked out Issy. I think I might take a punt on the Bitboy. It seems like a moderate deal for $100. Bummer it doesn't have L & R buttons. Not sure how much that will annoy me. I can't imagine it would cause too much trouble.

    I'd probably prefer something like the GPD XD but it's pretty pricey. I'm sure the Bitboy will provide enough entertainment. I can always bust out the laptop + 8bitdo controllers for more modern stuff.
     
  10. guy.incogneto

    guy.incogneto Member

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    I had a retrostone. Amazing device.
    Felt and looked like an OG gameboy, shoulder buttons, powerful enough to play PS1 and N64 games, HDMI output and 4x USB inputs so it could be used as a handheld and a console.

    My advice would be to check reviews of cheaper consoles and make sure they can handle games at a decent frame rate. Some.struggle with GBA games.

    Like others have said, a PSP or DS modded does a great job
     
  11. power

    power Member

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    don't forget most android tablets work very well with 8bitdo controllers.
     
    Last edited: May 10, 2019
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  12. elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    Tonnes of these thingies around:

    mc.jpg
     
  13. flain

    flain Member

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    I purchased one of the JXD devices probably 6-7 years ago and i ended up giving it to my kids a few years ago and they still use it. However, JXD isn't the way to go anymore. (here is the best forum if anyone is interested on what JXD devices are https://boards.dingoonity.org/jxd-devices/)

    I have both a jailbroken PSVita and Nintendo switch. The Vita still has more emulator ports on it but the switch is catching up. The SDL library (used by many emulators like MAME/FBA etc) has been ported to switch and the 3d acceleration hardware is now accessible to homebrew devs. It also has native ports of things like Doom, Duke Nukem 3D, Tyrian etc with widescreen support and runs them flawlessly. Downside is i no longer go online with my switch as nintendo ban jailbroken consoles, but it's not a huge deal for me considering i play mostly emulators on it now and the only switch exclusive games i care about are Zelda and the Mario games which both still work on a jailbroken console. I think going forward the "premium" emulation experience on a handheld will be on the switch.
     
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  14. elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    Crossposting from the "console activity" thread, this got revealed today:

     
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  15. Vanne

    Vanne Member

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    I've got 2 release models of the PSP, which have only been used about 3 hours each. (Bought both for myself and GF on release date) haven't looked at them in years. Where would be a good place to start to turn them into hand held emu devices? I recon the kids might love them today.
     
  16. samus

    samus Member

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    I bought one and it got delivered, way, way back in 2011.

    https://forums.overclockers.com.au/threads/openpandora-handheld-reviewed-finally.983280

    For the past few years it's been in the cupboard, since even at 700MHZ it doesn't really cut it today.

    However dragonbox has the "Pyra", sort of a Pandora 2.0. Even more expensive, and is now slightly outdated, but has the advantage of being almost wholly made in Germany now. evildragon was one of the founders of the Pandora, but got burned just as badly as everyone else when the company went bust.

    I had a JXD 7800, but i could never get it to work the way I wanted, running on an old android version, so I think I ended up giving it away.
     
  17. Joe Public

    Joe Public Member

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  18. OP
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    jimbogimp

    jimbogimp Member

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    I supported your gambling by also gambling on one of these and it arrived today.

    My brief lunch break first impressions are its pretty good. L&R buttons could be better, the analogue stick seems like a waste of time.
    But for an out of the box portable SNES, NES, MD, GBA, NEO GEO with a decent backlit screen she seems to be the go!
    I noticed a bit of slowdown/frame skip in Super Mario Allstars and the SNES game list is quite small. Maybe its not so good at SNES emulation... ?

    Now, to go through and cut the 700+ game lists down to the handfull that I might actually end up playing. :p
     
  19. Vanne

    Vanne Member

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    Thanks for the link guys, was having a look myself, and came across this thing...

    https://www.tomtop.com/p-f1858.html

    i guess its the size of the Switch? any ideas whats inside? I've had a look, but can't find any specs anywhere??
     

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