Official RPG Codex Discord Server

  1. Welcome to rpgcodex.net, a site dedicated to discussing computer based role-playing games in a free and open fashion. We're less strict than other forums, but please refer to the rules.

    "This message is awaiting moderator approval": All new users must pass through our moderation queue before they will be able to post normally. Until your account has "passed" your posts will only be visible to yourself (and moderators) until they are approved. Give us a week to get around to approving / deleting / ignoring your mundane opinion on crap before hassling us about it. Once you have passed the moderation period (think of it as a test), you will be able to post normally, just like all the other retards.
    Dismiss Notice

Anime Third Party Portable Consoles

Discussion in 'General Gaming' started by oddech_wymarlych_swiatow, Feb 21, 2021.

  1. oddech_wymarlych_swiatow Arcane

    oddech_wymarlych_swiatow
    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2013
    Messages:
    2,114
    With the retro gaming boom moar and moar stuff apears on the market.

    I was ignoring it until recently when Retroid Pocket 2 cought my attention.

    Question is: do o have any that you would recommend?
    What is the best 3rd party portable console in 2021?
    Would it win against Vita / 3DS / PSP as homebrew / emulation device?
     
    • Bad Spelling Bad Spelling x 2
    • incline incline x 1
    ^ Top  
  2. The Decline Arcane

    The Decline
    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2009
    Messages:
    4,563
    Location:
    Everywhere
    Anything powered by a raspberry pi 4 will be good.

    Like this PiBoy DMG.

    There's a ton of kits and chinese designs out there.

    Otherwise any of the latest Android phones will work fine.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
    ^ Top  
  3. RuySan Augur

    RuySan
    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2005
    Messages:
    747
    Location:
    Portugal
    I heard good things about ambernic products. The 350m has the perfect resolution at 640*480 (can do full screen integer scaling of most systems).

    But metal case is stupid. Blame apple for making up this idea that an aluminum she'll is "premium".
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
    ^ Top  
  4. Bad Sector Arcane Patron

    Bad Sector
    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2012
    Messages:
    1,359
    Insert Title Here RPG Wokedex
    Ambernic products are nice but i recommend the 320x240 models, especially if you use the MIPS-based devices as pretty much everything made for those has its roots on the Dingoo console from ~12 years ago and the GCW Zero "spiritual successor" from around 2012 or so and both had 320x240 screens, meaning a ton of software assumes that resolution. In recent years there have been some clones of these two devices with Ambernic's being generally the better ones but some have odd resolutions like 640x240 and they do not support hardware scaling which means that some programs will either not work or have to do scaling in software - which is much slower (and these devices aren't exactly fast in the first place).

    In general i recommend either the JZ4770-based devices (those are the most mature) like Ambernic's RG350 (not RG350M as that one has a 640x480 resolution and there are people who reported issues with it), RG380M (yes, despite being a higher number it has a 320x240 resolution), RG350P (this one is basically like RG350 but has an IPS screen), GKD350H, etc or alternatively some ARM-based devices that use EmuELEC and have either 320x240 resolution or a vertical multiply of that (e.g. 640x480, 720x480) with support for hardware scaling (sadly you'll have to research that one). Some ARM devices can be more powerful and cheaper, but are more varied and can be harder to get running. If you go with ARM avoid the Android-based ones since Android adds a ton of overhead (OpenDingux on the other hand runs only a tiny graphical shell directly though the framebuffer - not even using X11 - and when a game is running it gets almost the entire device with practically zero background overhead). Also avoid anything that has an odd resolution like 320x480 or 640x240 or whatever - not only these have issues with software but they tend to be used with weaker SoCs and often without any support for hardware scaling (or even hardware accelerated graphics).

    Whatever you buy, make sure it comes with OpenDingux or RetroFW (which AFAIK is based on OpenDingux but is for MIPS32r1 devices - note that not all OpenDingux software will run on RetroFW but they use the same package format -OPK- and software can be made to work in both... so some do that) - as this is mainly what the community seems to be supporting. Between the MIPS-based devices i highly recommend the JZ4770-based ones as they are the most powerful (and common).

    There is a database of current handhelds here: https://obscurehandhelds.com/current-handhelds/

    Note that this list only shows the "latest"(ish) handhelds but you can find older models too.

    Also some software for OpenDingux can be found here: https://github.com/retrogamehandheld/OpenDingux - it doesn't contain everything (like, e.g. my own game's port :-P), but contains enough to get you started. Also check the Dingoonity boards and the retro gaming handheld Discord.

    EDIT: all that stuff are of interest if you care about custom software, getting new/updated emulators, homebrew games, etc on the device of course - otherwise if all you care is sticking with whatever support the device comes with out of the box then just get the cheapest and most powerful one you can find (usually some ARM-based one).
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2021
    • Informative Informative x 2
    ^ Top  
  5. forumvisitor#451 Arbiter

    forumvisitor#451
    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2014
    Messages:
    434
    Location:
    In a ship with cooked grenade
    I use hacked Vita which can run lot of things. Also it is finely made,all the components can be bought and is greatly portable unlike Switch which is just too big and made from cheap materials. The modding scene recently ported San Andreas for Vita and it is actually growing day by day, expect many good releases. And hey, its library ain't bad at all. I recently finished Dex on it and what a blast.
     
    ^ Top  
  6. samuraigaiden Cipher

    samuraigaiden
    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2018
    Messages:
    1,585
    RPG Wokedex
    How are the emulators in this ambernic consoles? Can you update them, mess with the os, etc?
     
    ^ Top  
  7. Bad Sector Arcane Patron

    Bad Sector
    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2012
    Messages:
    1,359
    Insert Title Here RPG Wokedex
    Yes, it is running Linux, you just connect to it via FTP or SSH and copy any files over (and since it has SSH you can also use a terminal to connect to it and work with the files there directly if you want). I think you can do it via Windows Explorer too though i never tried it myself as i use Total Commander which has an FTP client itself.

    Applications, emulators, games, etc are in the OPK format which is essentially a compressed disk image that the OS mounts when you launch the game and it discovers those automatically - you just copy the OPK file to the device and the UI gets updated instantly to show the icon of the application.

    I do not have the Ambernic console but i have GCW Zero which is some sort of predecessor of these devices - they have the same SoC and run the same OS (OpenDingux), so they are a slightly updated version of GCW Zero. The OS is completely open and there are community made updates now and then (also alternative OSes, etc) with work under progress to put all the modifications into mainline Linux so that there will be more frequent updates in the future.

    (note that i refer to Ambernic's MIPS-based devices, those that have a 0 at their end... but AFAIK the ARM based devices - those with the 1 at the end - also use Linux, just the software wont be compatible)
     
    • Brofist Brofist x 1
    ^ Top  

As an Amazon Associate, rpgcodex.net earns from qualifying purchases.