Author Topic: "Ultimate" RS-97 Guide  (Read 33602 times)

hiei (OP)

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"Ultimate" RS-97 Guide
« on: March 24, 2018, 08:38:36 am »

Here is a guide to gain the best RS-97 possible. The reason why I created this thread is to make life easier to everyone who bought (or at least want to buy) this device by aggregating in this thread everything needed to obtain the best handheld emulator possible.

Watching on the fan wiki you can get a better idea of the specs!

Trusted store: FASTTECH and FUNNYPLAYING.

/!\ THERE ARE FOUR DIFFERENT VERSION OF THE RS-97, THEY ARE NOT THE SAME, YOU WILL NEED TO KNOW WHICH ONE YOU OWN TO FLASH THE CORRECT FIRMWARE, BE AWARE OF THIS /!\



First of all you need to know which RS-97 version you own. Don't worry, it's extremely easy! To accomplish this you only need to remove the battery cover and then the battery of your device, at this point you will see (written on the PCB) something like "RETRO-GAME-V*.*" followed by a date, like this example photo.



Emulators Guide: LINK

SOFTWARE
Usually you will find any of these in the repository.

OS:
Custom Firmware
Menu:
SimpleMenuLauncher
GMenuNX (Previously known as GMenuNext, a GMenu2x's fork)
ROM screenshot preview
Python menu similar to EmulationStation
Alternative menu based on Dmenu (resolution optimized)
Themes:
m1024 skins collection
Material Design SKIN

HARDWARE

Battery:
# Any BL-5B 2100mAh or BL-5B 1390mAh can be an improvement.
For more advices visit: LINK
Screen protector:
The best choice here is a Tempered Glass, otherwise you can still use a PET one.
# Tempered Glass - AFUNTA (BEST FIT)
# Tempered Glass - Deerekin
# PET - Deerekin
# PET - Brotect
# PET - Savvies
For more advices visit: LINK
Protective case:
# Generally speaking any DS, DS Lite, DSi or 3DS case should do the trick, more or less. Many of them could be too small.
# Games Console Bag (FUNNYPLAYING)
For more advices visit: LINK



MOD FACTORY: LINK
In this thread you will find everything that you need to know about modding your device!



For additional informations visit Steward's website.
There is also a Discord Chat where you can talk about the RS-97.

This is a work in progress guide, if you have suggestion to improve the guide just write it up here!
« Last Edit: October 18, 2018, 08:01:55 am by hiei »

hi-ban

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Re: "Ultimate" RS-97 Guide
« Reply #1 on: March 26, 2018, 06:15:28 pm »
For an open handheld running Opendingux and using an Ingenic JZ47xx CPU, my personal choices would be:

- 320x240 screen (because reasons) Might even choose a 640x480 one if the CPU was a JZ4780 at 1.2GHz, but 640x480 4:3 screens are so hard to source nowadays.

- D-PAD + ABXY + SELECT/START + L/R buttons (No analogs, please. Also no microswitches, they are awfully bad)

- An additonal "HOME" front button (to avoid needing weird button combos to acces emulator menus. Makes life easier for programmers, and makes life easier for users too)

- Protected screen (i hate when the console case just has a rectangular hole where the screen is exposed to everything)

- Volume wheel

- Please, no "fake GBA cart slots". They're useless and only take up space which could be used for anything else, like a bigger battery.

- Would be nice if they could do it so we could replace the d-pad with a GB d-pad without the need of modding the case. Chinese handhelds have a long story of designing the most unusable d-pads, and a bad d-pad can completely ruin an otherwise great device. For some unknown reason, they ALWAYS seem do at least one design choice which ruins every device they do.


Some examples:
- On the Dingoo, the L/R buttons were super-crap. Too small, and they easily break with normal use.

- On the RS-97 the screen is unprotected, has weird resolution, and the useless gba cart slot takes a lot of space which could be used for a bigger battery, better speakers, or whatever.

- The GCW Zero has a crap d-pad, and the analog is near useless (and it randomly starts registering false readings).


hiei (OP)

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Re: "Ultimate" RS-97 Guide
« Reply #3 on: March 26, 2018, 06:42:18 pm »
I totally agree with you, hi-ban.
Maybe on the RS-97 we can change also the speakers easily, who knows, I haven't seen any mod yet. Anyway would be cool if this kind of mod would be easy to do for everyone.
The display...I assume that it can also be changed easily, isn't it?
« Last Edit: March 26, 2018, 06:48:04 pm by hiei »

m1024

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Re: "Ultimate" RS-97 Guide
« Reply #4 on: March 26, 2018, 07:08:14 pm »
The speakers of the Nintendo DS look very similar... Sample images
Make sure to update your skins (PS4, PSNext, PSNextDark, OldBoy and Zelda) with the latest version from time to time:
https://boards.dingoonity.org/ingenic-jz4760-devices/low-res-skins-for-gmenu2x-oldboy-zelda/

hiei (OP)

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Re: "Ultimate" RS-97 Guide
« Reply #5 on: March 26, 2018, 07:23:52 pm »
The speakers of the Nintendo DS look very similar... Sample images

Great info!
Would be fantastic if someone who already holds the RS-97 could try these mods and let us know.

hi-ban

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Re: "Ultimate" RS-97 Guide
« Reply #6 on: March 26, 2018, 07:26:32 pm »
I totally agree with you, hi-ban.
Maybe on the RS-97 we can change also the speakers easily, who knows, I haven't seen any mod yet. Anyway would be cool if this kind of mod would be easy to do for everyone.
The display...I assume that it can also be changed easily, isn't it?

Well, the thing is that a well made device should not need to be modded.
If you need to mod it, it's because something is not right and needs to be "corrected".

hiei (OP)

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Re: "Ultimate" RS-97 Guide
« Reply #7 on: March 26, 2018, 07:39:00 pm »
I totally agree with you, hi-ban.
Maybe on the RS-97 we can change also the speakers easily, who knows, I haven't seen any mod yet. Anyway would be cool if this kind of mod would be easy to do for everyone.
The display...I assume that it can also be changed easily, isn't it?

Well, the thing is that a well made device should not need to be modded.
If you need to mod it, it's because something is not right and needs to be "corrected".

True. But at the moment this is the only cheap and powerful solution that we have :(
ARM boards IMHO for some reasons are even worse.
We need something powerful, cheap, fully open source and open hardware and...simply it doesn't exist nowadays. Maybe one day, when RISC-V and similar architectures gets popular...
Our best bet at the moment are devices like the RS-97.

HercTNT

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Re: "Ultimate" RS-97 Guide
« Reply #8 on: March 26, 2018, 08:36:28 pm »
For an open handheld running Opendingux and using an Ingenic JZ47xx CPU, my personal choices would be:

- 320x240 screen (because reasons) Might even choose a 640x480 one if the CPU was a JZ4780 at 1.2GHz, but 640x480 4:3 screens are so hard to source nowadays.

- D-PAD + ABXY + SELECT/START + L/R buttons (No analogs, please. Also no microswitches, they are awfully bad)

- An additonal "HOME" front button (to avoid needing weird button combos to acces emulator menus. Makes life easier for programmers, and makes life easier for users too)

- Protected screen (i hate when the console case just has a rectangular hole where the screen is exposed to everything)

- Volume wheel

- Please, no "fake GBA cart slots". They're useless and only take up space which could be used for anything else, like a bigger battery.

- Would be nice if they could do it so we could replace the d-pad with a GB d-pad without the need of modding the case. Chinese handhelds have a long story of designing the most unusable d-pads, and a bad d-pad can completely ruin an otherwise great device. For some unknown reason, they ALWAYS seem do at least one design choice which ruins every device they do.


Some examples:
- On the Dingoo, the L/R buttons were super-crap. Too small, and they easily break with normal use.

- On the RS-97 the screen is unprotected, has weird resolution, and the useless gba cart slot takes a lot of space which could be used for a bigger battery, better speakers, or whatever.

- The GCW Zero has a crap d-pad, and the analog is near useless (and it randomly starts registering false readings).
hi-ban gets it. exactly how i feel. I want just one opensource handheld console that gets it all right. the only analog i would agree with is a ps-vita style analog. outside of that hi-ban nailed it.

Bitboy

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    • Retrogamers97-90
Re: "Ultimate" RS-97 Guide
« Reply #9 on: March 27, 2018, 08:34:41 am »
Maybe you can add buy links to the ultimate guide

https://funnyplaying.com/collections/game-boy-advance/products/k101-pro-retro-game-console-gba-gbc-gb-sega-nes-sfc-neogeo-fully-compatible

$50.31 with code JUTLEYS 2x screen protectors and free screwdriver.

I have attached a picture of the package i recieved from funnyplaying.com not long ago screen protectors are perfect and screwdriver is good quality happy with purchace and well worth the money.

hiei (OP)

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Re: "Ultimate" RS-97 Guide
« Reply #10 on: March 27, 2018, 11:09:15 am »
Added every trusted shop to the first post :)

EDIT: Happy to see this thread sticked :D
« Last Edit: March 27, 2018, 03:48:26 pm by hiei »

enodr

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Re: "Ultimate" RS-97 Guide
« Reply #11 on: March 28, 2018, 08:35:09 am »
Hi,

Very informative post thank you. It was difficult to search through the 1xx pages of the original thread!

I was looking for development information for the RS-97 and found out that Steward has a very nice website and instructions on how to compile stuff for the RS-97 (link to buildroot, etc), you should  definitively add the link to his website:
https://steward-fu.github.io/website/handheld.htm

I still have questions: in the post you write "Change the default display with a 3 inch 320x240 screen is the best choice." but I don't understand what that means. Has anybody tried to replace the 320x480 LCD with a 320x240 ? I doubt it would be easy to find a pin compatible LCD...

Concerning this weird 320x480 screen resolution and by looking at Steward patches for the emu, I was wondering how dev are dealing with this resolution:
- I read somewhere the Ingenic chip has hardware 2D acceleration. Is there support in the kernel?
- Do the emu make use of some hardware acceleration for scaling or just using slow memcpy tricks?

Thanks!

hiei (OP)

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  • Posts: 102
Re: "Ultimate" RS-97 Guide
« Reply #12 on: March 28, 2018, 08:59:18 am »
Hi,

Very informative post thank you. It was difficult to search through the 1xx pages of the original thread!

I was looking for development information for the RS-97 and found out that Steward has a very nice website and instructions on how to compile stuff for the RS-97 (link to buildroot, etc), you should  definitively add the link to his website:
https://steward-fu.github.io/website/handheld.htm

I still have questions: in the post you write "Change the default display with a 3 inch 320x240 screen is the best choice." but I don't understand what that means. Has anybody tried to replace the 320x480 LCD with a 320x240 ? I doubt it would be easy to find a pin compatible LCD...

Concerning this weird 320x480 screen resolution and by looking at Steward patches for the emu, I was wondering how dev are dealing with this resolution:
- I read somewhere the Ingenic chip has hardware 2D acceleration. Is there support in the kernel?
- Do the emu make use of some hardware acceleration for scaling or just using slow memcpy tricks?

Thanks!

Added Steward's website!

For the moment we can remove the display section until we have further information.

rbg_gamer

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  • Posts: 59
Re: "Ultimate" RS-97 Guide
« Reply #13 on: March 28, 2018, 05:46:49 pm »
Fantastic price for the unit next few days (pick up a mini-B usb cable from a dollar store).  $40usd.  Buttons don't have the color coding though which is weird.  Looks like the exact same unit though, ymmv.

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Retro-Handheld-Game-Console-3-0-Inch-game-Console-Built-in-818-Different-Games-Support-For/32853407674.html
« Last Edit: March 28, 2018, 05:48:38 pm by rbg_gamer »

Dulus_No

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Re: "Ultimate" RS-97 Guide
« Reply #14 on: March 29, 2018, 04:10:15 am »
Buttons don't have the color coding though which is weird.  Looks like the exact same unit though, ymmv.
I bought it from this store and it has colored buttons. You can see on the video in the description.
But it's already sold out (Sorry, this item is no longer available!).

Smakx

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Re: "Ultimate" RS-97 Guide - Some Tips for CD Systems
« Reply #15 on: March 29, 2018, 11:54:19 pm »
On the RS-97 when you add a cd game in bin/cue format and then browse the roms you see the title listed twice but can't see the file extensions. If you select the bin file instead of the cue file and try to load it in the emu, the system locks and you have to reset it with the recessed button on the bottom.

To avoid this, you can set up filters on your emulators. Example: Sega CD

1. Select the PicoDrive icon and hit the select button
2. Select "Edit Picodrive" and hit the A button
3. Move down to "Selector Filter" and hit the A button
4. Enter the following:   .zip,.cue,.iso
5. Select OK and hit the A button
6. Hit the Start button to exit editing/return to the menu

Now when you start PicoDrive and the rom selector comes up, only .zip, .cue and .iso files will be listed, eliminating the possibility to accidentally load the bin file and cause a crash. This also hides the audio files for earlier cd-rom releases which had them separate. I have tested over 30 Sega CD titles and all worked well using the 1.2 firmware and the updated version of Picodrive "picodrive_19-03-2018_fixed version of picodrive, fixed double buffer & swapped XY button issue" from the "beta_testing_latest" folder in the RS-97 repo: https://mega.nz/#F!B5xCXZRC!XTt2dsNCeNljYsGW_onUTg

Since Templer the PC Engine/Turbo CD emulator currently doesn't accept zipped roms, I set the filters for Templer to:   .pce,.cue,.iso

When you set filters the file extensions are case sensitive. If you set .zip as a filter for example the roms must be named with a .zip extension, not .ZIP (if you have roms named that way, rename them or add .ZIP to the filter list).

Note: You can use a similar procedure to the one above to set the default folder that each emulator's file selector starts in. Instead of choosing "Selector Filter" in step 3, choose "Selector Directory" - browse to where you have the roms stored for that emulator and hit the start button to save the rom path. Then hit the select button to exit back to the menu.

Both Sega CD and PCEngine CD systems require bios files, here are the filenames that the emulators expect and where they should be put on your device:

Sega CD Bios (Use all 3 files): us_scd1_9210.bin, eu_mcd1_9210.bin, jp_mcd1_9112.bin
Location: /mnt/int_sd/.picodrive

PCEngine/TurboGraphics CD: syscard3.pce
Location: /mnt/int_sd/.temper/syscards
« Last Edit: March 31, 2018, 10:44:07 pm by Smakx »

Adhrast

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Re: "Ultimate" RS-97 Guide
« Reply #16 on: March 30, 2018, 07:36:44 am »
@Smakx I still haven't gotten my RS-97 but I want to hug you, that was SO useful!
Thanks man, can't wait to finally game on my retro handheld :D

Smakx

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Re: "Ultimate" RS-97 Guide
« Reply #17 on: March 30, 2018, 10:13:57 am »
@Smakx I still haven't gotten my RS-97 but I want to hug you, that was SO useful!
Thanks man, can't wait to finally game on my retro handheld :D

Np, glad it was helpful and I appreciate the feedback. If you run into any issues or have questions feel free to ask here or in the RS-97 discord chat: https://discord.gg/hvR5vK6

GameBoy

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Re: "Ultimate" RS-97 Guide
« Reply #18 on: March 31, 2018, 12:16:46 pm »
I totally agree with you, hi-ban.
Maybe on the RS-97 we can change also the speakers easily, who knows, I haven't seen any mod yet. Anyway would be cool if this kind of mod would be easy to do for everyone.
The display...I assume that it can also be changed easily, isn't it?

hi i change the speaker to this one
https://www.ebay.de/itm/Game-Boy-Advance-SP-Lautsprecher-Sound-Speaker-Audio-Ersatzteil-Replacement/122389092183?hash=item1c7ef55757:g:ZacAAOSwXYtYwnJ9

but the sound quality is the exact the same. the original speaker is not bad, most likely the emulator is responsible for the lousy sound quality. tests the original spreaker with an audiofile or video file, sounds pretty much like a real thing

OhOhOne

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Re: "Ultimate" RS-97 Guide
« Reply #19 on: March 31, 2018, 06:18:13 pm »
On the RS-97 when you add a cd game in bin/cue format and then browse the roms you see the title listed twice but can't see the file extensions. If you select the bin file instead of the cue file and try to load it in the emu, the system locks and you have to reset it with the recessed button on the bottom.

My experience differs, as I have tried a number of Sega CD roms in .bin/.cue format for which I have to select the first .bin for them to run, and if I select the .cue file it crashes and locks up requiring a hard reset with the recessed button. Vay and The Terminator are just two examples. But there are other roms for which your advice is true, such as Pitfall - The Mayan Adventure, where I have to select the .cue and not the .bin.

So in my experience it seems to vary from one rom to another, and I cannot see any reason for this. Has anyone else had this experience, or is my setup an anomaly?



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