Hello! here's my RG-99 review received on the 18th. First of all, excuse my English level, I am Spanish and I am using an online translator.
--- RG-99 ---
As you know not long ago and with the RG-300, in Aliexpress appeared this model, some smart sellers were selling it pretending to be the superior model selling it 10-15 euros cheaper because they are exactly the same physically sharing the same housing and buttonhole, the business was round. The only way to know which one was which was which was opening the console to check the cpu or check if from the back we could see a micro-SD removing the battery.
Other more honest vendors offered the real name and real data of the console and that was it. The differences at hardware level are abysmal and that in practice is very noticeable.
- 2.8-inch IPS screen: resolution up to 960*480
- CPU / RAM: 360MHz / 32MB
- Vibration effect
- 169 integrated games
- External Battery BL-5C 1800 mAh, 9 hours play time
- Storage capacity: 256MB
- Supports micro-SD card expansion up to 256GB
As you can see the difference in hardware is great but without a doubt the most significant difference is the operating system. The innards of the RG-99 are the same as those of the RS-90 (RetroMini) a console that appeared several years ago already and left a bittersweet aftertaste to the users due to its small screen, the lack of more buttons, to not having L/R triggers and to the deficient of its emulation, luckily, they took out a custom firmware that gave a new life to this console, going from emulating 5 systems to emulating all the 8-16 bits up to Mega-CD or Pc-engine CD.
The least interesting thing is the box, it came in pretty good condition, no scratches or bruises. Simple, but effective, inside it is the typical plastic tray that contains the console, a decent and colorful manual, that is, in Chinese and English, and a USB cable type C. No power charger, no headphones (some vendors do offer them), nothing else.
The console comes in the typical protective bag soft as a baby's ass, once we remove the bag we find the console. The quality of the materials is very high, the construction is very solid, more than any of the others that I have bought until now, the crosshead and the buttons a joy, to make ha-do-kens does not imply any difficulty, but what but it impresses to me is the quality of the screen, 2.8 inches with some colors and a sharpness that can happen by a console of an official mark, the problems I will detail them but ahead.
--- FRONT PART ---
On the front side there is an IPS display with a resolution of 960*480 and perfect viewing angles and you can select the brightness from 4 different levels. I haven't found information if the screen is 50 or 60 Hz, and as it sticks, some emulators make a weird scaling with the resolution, so the texts in some games are not completely readable. Other than that, when playing the screen has an exceptional quality.
Cross and buttons with an unbeatable touch, nothing to add here, in the center we can find two buttons that have the utility to raise and lower the brightness of the screen, at the bottom, Select and Start. Pressing both buttons simultaneously we enter a menu that allows us to continue, exit the game or save and load up to 3 times for each game.
Below to the right the speaker, in the typical disposition of this console format, perhaps, the weakest part of the device (together with the emulation). Loose and unclear sound. However, the audio we can get with the 3.5mm jack with headphones is much better and loud.
--- REAR PART ---
On the back we can see the L and R triggers, the circular shape of the key makes it fit perfectly to the fingers. They make a lot of emphasis on the fact that they have Omron buttons, what I really notice is that they are buttons with a different touch than the rest. They make the typical click and that's it. Personally I would have preferred buttons with membrane as always. I have had the opportunity to press Omron switches and buttons and they have nothing to do with this hahaha.
As a curiosity I have marked the arrangement of the charging LED (it turns red) and operation (it stays green) of the console. The back part seems to me a very peculiar place at least.
We can also appreciate the removable battery cover BL-5C 1800 mAh that promises us 9 hours of gameplay. I suppose that it will be with little sound and the brightness to the minimum. I could get more than 6 hours with medium brightness and volume.
--- RIGHT PART ---
Nothing to highlight, just the potentiometer wheel that regulates the sound volume.
--- LEFT PART ---
Here we have the ON-OFF selector button along with the micro-SD card slot.
--- TOP PART ---
Nothing to say, we can only see with more precision the shape of the L and R triggers so appreciated for the GBA and Super NES emulators.
--- BOTTOM PART ---
Here we see the connector to charge the console, I think it's a good idea that they have chosen a USB C type connector and not the typical micro USB, very well by the designer of the device. We can also see the 3.5 mm jack input through which we can get stereo audio with a very good quality and we can also get video through RCA. The quality is what we can expect in this type of video output, in a CRT screen looks great and on a flat screen because we can see the shortcomings of this type of output, but perfectly playable without lag or synchronization problems.
Next I will comment a little on the performance of some emulators and a little further down I will put some video. In theory the machine is capable of emulating the systems CP1, CP2, GBA, SFC, MD and FC and brings us in memory 169 games. As a plus it brings the list of games accompanied by an image of the cover of the games, I like that.
The typical, Street Fighter II, Final Fight, Cadillacs, The Punisher... emulates it pretty well, pretty good audio and sound and pretty acceptable resolution.
- At the moment, even though I've put in all the roms for this board, I've only been able to get the Capcom Sports Club to work smoothly and the Street Fighter Zero, but in this SF Zero the characters had voices like Alvin and the squirrels, hahaha, I'll keep trying.
-Game Boy Advance-
- Uff here depends a lot on the game, some good, some regulatory and some unplayable.
- Just like gba, it depends on the game but curiously gba is much better at a higher percentage. In the Snes emulator you can notice a considerable jump in frameskip.
- For me the best of all along with NES, almost 100% compatibility, very good sound and video, superior to the rest without being perfect of course this one. In the card is created a .config file of the Picodrive that I guess will use this console.
- Just like Megadrive, almost no problem.
We can also play Master System, Game Gear, Game Boy and Game Boy Color but not natively. In order to play these systems we have to use some application like Goomba, DrSMS or EZClient to pass the files from .sms .gg .gb/.gbc to .gba. The conversion from Game Boy to Advance is quite good and the resulting games are perfectly playable... with Master and Game Gear it doesn't happen the same, some are playable and others scratching. Pc Engine and Mame are not available for this system, or at least, I have not found the mode or the corresponding mame romset to be able to execute them correctly.
Well now I leave you some images recorded by me to see a little of its operation and some comparative to see how it defends the RG-99
--- PART 1 ---
CPS1, Megadrive, Game Gear y Master System ---
--- PART 2 ---
Game Boy, Super Nintendo, Nintendo y Game Boy Advance ---
--- New BittBoy vs RG-99 ---
You have seen how this machine works and here are my impressions:THE GOOD:
- Price, you can get it at Aliexpress for less than 30 ? shipping included.
- Very good quality materials, solid construction and controls that respond very well in general.
- Several emulators, option to load more roms through a micro-SD and possibility to record and save games.
- Headphone output (not all machines in this price range have it).
- OUTSTANDING screen, the best screen of all Chinese laptops I have.THE BAD:
- Pretty poor emulation in general.
- The need to pull external applications to convert .gb .gbc .gg and .sms roms to .gba
- Many great emulators are missing, such as Pc Engine and Mame among others.
- Not being able to switch to a custom firmware loaded directly from a secondary micro-SD
- Very poor volume.
- Having to wait for the community to release some modified firmware to squeeze all its potential (not much, but like in a RS-90)
Of all the Chinese consoles I have, the RG-99 is currently in third place in terms of emulation. For me, the ranking from best to worst would be like this...
1? New BittBoy
2? PAP KIII
4? CoolBaby RS-69
5? Pocke Gear
6? The rest of famiclones consoles type FC mini, Retromax, etc
I hope it will help you in case you have doubts about buying it or not, my advice is the following, if you can afford a little more money go for the RG-300
, if you have a tight budget but want a good emulation at the cost of having a smaller screen go for the New BittBoy
, if you have the money for a retro FC or a NES one chip clone I suggest you to try to save a little bit and buy the RG-99
that will do the same functions as the NES clone and you will be able to get a little more out of it with the rest of the emulators.
If you have any doubt or you want to know the performance of a particular game do not hesitate to ask me and I will help you in what I can.
Greetings to all!