Thursday, 3 December 2009
My new Dingoo has arrived!
First impressions? Surely it's not as good as the Wiz (but I already knew that and the price is lower anyway) but I am quite happy with the new device. What I like is that in contrast with the Wiz, it's coming with several emulators (GBA, NeoGeo, Capcom System 1,2, NES, Mega Drive, SNES) integrated in the menu and you don't even run the emulators, you just select a rom and it runs directly the same way you would run an application or native game for the machine. It comes with more games seemingly made from the company who made Dingoo, few of them aren't that bad, like a 3d alone in the dark/resident evil style game called 7 days. And the 3d engine is quite good (also, software rendered, no 3d accelerator on the device) and is also used in few more games provided by Dingoo games division.
What might be better than the Wiz is the fact that the battery time is quite nice (7 hours or more) and what additional it has that the Wiz might miss is there is also a radio. A TV-out port is also on the device and even a cable is provided in the box (I am not sure if the wiz has tv-out but it seriously didn't come with the box. Also, what is enjoyful is the vast amount of Chinglish (all your base are belong to us :) both in the manual, website and game menu. Firmware is Fureware, Video is Wideo, also there are two options with funny names, '3D Game' (to run any APP files, from games to applications) and 'Interesting Game' (to run emulator roms). Just funny.
I also tried the official devkit for windows. It uses their own SDK (s2dsdk) that was maybe used for the developing of their own games. It's quite object oriented and I had to use to send pixel objects to the framebuffer which maybe does some inner conversion because a simple rendering proved to be not as fast compare with everything else I have tried. I'd like to see if there is a more low level to access the frame buffer. Many people have moved to Dingux which is a linux port for Dingoo and a lot of released emulators and ports of games require Dingux (which is unfortunate if you haven't installed it yet and you want to run regular Dingoo APP files, you find not many stuff). I had problems with mounting the device in Vista but in an XP laptop it worked just fine. I also had problems updating the firmware (there is an official and an unofficial from homebrew devs, most people prefer the unofficial). I hope Dingux doesn't need a new firmware to be installed..
I also managed to compile something for the Gamepark Wiz under windows. Originally I had installed Ubuntu to compile with the linux devkit (there is no good Wiz Devkit for Windows yet :P) but I gave a modified devkitGP2X a third try under windows and this time I succeeded. I get very good framerates. And it's all SDL. So easy to port!