Can someone explain to me the basics of 3DS flashcarting?

Discussion in '3DS - Flashcards & Custom Firmwares' started by blazingwolf, Jan 17, 2015.

  1. blazingwolf
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    blazingwolf GBAtemp Fan

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    Can someone explain to me the basics of 3DS flashcarting?

    I've been using flashcarts since 07 on the DS, but the 3DS generation I've ignored until now. I've got my new 3DS XL on pre-order and I'm ready buy a cart now to have ready.

    I see Sky3DS now supports 9.4U which is a huge plus to me because I have no worries about the flashcart working when I get my 3DS.

    Its also region free which is nice.

    I see talk of emunand, and to be frank, I'm not sure what this is. It seems like an emulated nand, but why does this matter? Is this to circumvent update needs for games? Can you still play games that require a newer firmware on an older one with a flash cart? If not, is this for 3DS eShop games, what are the advantages of emunand functionality and what models support it?

    Is there a certain flashcart to look for quality? I know some older DS flashcarts spring loaded slot for SD cards were crappy, are there any cards that I should avoid in that sense, I don't want a 90 dollar investment going down the drain in a few weeks.

    Finally do only certain cards support home brew, if at all? I only ask because I was big on cheats on the DS so I could unlock everything in games without having to spend hours and hours. Whats the situation on homebrew and flash carts?

    I appreciate ANY help with information and decision making, thanks!
     
  2. prototech

    prototech GBAtemp Fan

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    I don't think any 3DS' ship with 9.3+, so I would recommend a Gateway. The only reason you should buy a Sky3DS is if you CAN'T use a Gateway.
     
  3. blazingwolf
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    blazingwolf GBAtemp Fan

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    Why thought, what features are exclusive or make it better?

    Also, I keep hearing about cia files, what are these and what do they do?
     
  4. blinkzane

    blinkzane Panic at your moms house

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    install files to d SD
    plug gateway in
    press d intwerweb
    go to exploit site
    boom, play roms

    go with gateway. currently their is no direct cheats homebrew but you can run ninjhax if you keep emuNAND on 9.2 or lower or if you have another SD with 9.2 emuNAND. (you can use cubic ninja rom) with ninjhax. you have more homebrew options, in fact right now you can use region free on any 3ds firmware thanx to smealum.

    edit:.cia files install directly to your home menu, and it is ONLY recommended to install to your emuNAND
    emuNAND=copy of system that runs gateway
    sysNAND= actual system(never edit)
     
  5. prototech

    prototech GBAtemp Fan

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    Sky3DS only lets you load games and it's not region free. Gateway lets you exploit your 3DS and downgrade to a lower firmware which enables further exploitation and the ability to setup emuNAND, which is a second firmware that's loaded that can be updated to the latest firmware without worry or brickage. It's also region free and has a really good rep. Sky3DS may work now, but could be blocked in the future. There's little that Nintendo can do for the Gateway since we can update with emuNAND and still use ROM's because of the Gateway exploit. Also, CIA's are basically eShop titles, so you can convert your ROM's to a CIA and install it to your homescreen. There's several benefits to this, but I do it so that I don't have to carry my Gateway flash card anymore which uses extra battery power (though you still need the flash card to set up the exploit initially).
     
  6. blazingwolf
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    blazingwolf GBAtemp Fan

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    Sounds like with 2 flashcarts with 9.4U support, Gateway won't be far behind so I guess I'll go with them.

    You mentioned something about having 2 SD cards one with 9.2 emunand on it, Does each card have a virtual nand that it loads, so you can run different firmwares on your 3DS?

    I am still not sure what emunand does/is and what cia files are/do.

    Edit: Prototech answered my question on cia files, thanks.
     
  7. blazingwolf
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    blazingwolf GBAtemp Fan

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    Can anyone recommend a good reseller, is anyone listed on the gateway website as a reseller a good choice?

    Edit: Can you also install eshop titles on with cia files + emunand. I know some titles are eshop exclusive, can we run these games as well?
     
  8. blinkzane

    blinkzane Panic at your moms house

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    depends where you are from. im in the US and I live in Colorado. I ordered from modchipsdirect and got mine in four days.
    don't order from modchipscentral though. ive heard horror stories from them
     
  9. prototech

    prototech GBAtemp Fan

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    Realhotstuff.com is a good seller. So you have you sysNAND which is the firmware on your internal memory on your 3DS, and your emuNAND is stored entirely on your SD card. The exploit Gateway uses can be executed from the sysNAND, and then it loads the emuNAND with ROM loading capabilities. The exploits that Gateway and Sky use are VERY different, so there's no guarantee that Gateway will have 9.4 support, but like I said, I don't think any 3DS ship with too high of a firmware so the Gateway should work.
     
  10. blinkzane

    blinkzane Panic at your moms house

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    yes, you can have multiple SD cards with different emuNANDS. in fact, if you do it just right you will be able to transfer your saves from firmware to firmware(unless it requires a certain firmware or it varies higher or lower than 6.x due to save encryption).

    edit: also sorry, I'm kinda rushed as i'm typing this so it's hard for me to explain everything lol. It's also 930am and I haven't slept yet
     
  11. blazingwolf
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    blazingwolf GBAtemp Fan

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    I will check them out.

    So my initial worry was that if I buy a new 3DS and it comes with 9.3> I'm screwed, but I could always buy a normal 3DS that comes with a lower firmware and be good right? I always thought running a flashcart on a lower firmware...like say 8.0, was a disadvantage, because you didn't have all the features or couldn't run certain games, but with gateway, if I understand right, even if I decided to settle with a normal 3DS with a 7.0/8.0 firmware, with emunand, I can run the latest firmware, and therefore have the latest games and features correct?
     
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  12. prototech

    prototech GBAtemp Fan

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    Correct, 100%. Again though, no one has bought a 3DS with 9.3+. In fact, many people still buy new ones with 4.x.
     
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  13. blinkzane

    blinkzane Panic at your moms house

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    yes, it doesnt matter what firmware your system comes with as long as it's below 9.2.
    when you install emuNAND you can update JUST emuNAND and that will be on 9.4 while sysNAND stays on 8.5 or whatever it came with

    edit: I also don't think any N3DS will come out with 9.3+ anytime soon, and if one does then we will know on here. if you do get one, just take it back, get your cash back, and try a different store =]
     
  14. blazingwolf
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    blazingwolf GBAtemp Fan

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    Perfect, last question. Are fakes still an issue, I know there was a lot of drama with fake gateways and bricking and stuff, as long as I buy from a reseller on the website I should be fine?

    On one website, I saw a site stating Gateway 3.0 Ultra bundle, is this just a fancy term right?, all Gateways are the same with the same features, there isn't a better one is there?
     
  15. blazingwolf
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    blazingwolf GBAtemp Fan

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    I lied, few last questions, is there an SD card limit. If I buy a 128GB card, will it work fine, are there any issues with cards this size, will it work with SDHC cards and is a certain class recommended for certain performance/roms?

    And is there a ROM limit, can you only fit x amount of roms so theres no point getting a 128GB card?
     
  16. blinkzane

    blinkzane Panic at your moms house

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    128 is fine but no bigger, and there is no rom limit. i use an sdhc but i believe even sdxc will work too. obviously better quality will last longer but i would stay away from cheap Sd cards. I ordered my 32 gig from modchipsdirect when I got my gateway and it works perfect
    also all gateway cards are the same. you can search these forums by typing in the reseller name and see if anything negative pops up also. i dont think fakes will be an issue as long as you buy from an official reselleer =]


    i also recommend doing a ton of research before you get it in the mail and watch the videos on how to install, or maybe even downgrade if you would like. (sounds scary but check my quide, just search gateway downgrade)
     
  17. blazingwolf
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    blazingwolf GBAtemp Fan

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    You all have been a great help, thanks.
     
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  18. Adeka

    Adeka Beta Tester

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    Class10 always recommended for best speeds.

    Gateway has no game limit but a limit of 128gb micro sd but you can always install games to your emunand instead (128gb micro sd and 128gb normal sd full of games is plenty). I'm not sure the exact limit of the normal sd card but it's probably whatever the 3ds can read.

    Sky3DS has a limit of 10 games if you purchase a red button version. You can remove it through hacking but it's very complicated. Blue button version has max support of a 64gb micro sd card.

    The newest version of Gateway is called Gateway Ultra. The carts are all the same, they have never had a new version released.

    Fakes are not an issue as long as you purchase from realhotstuff ;)

    Edit: :ninja:'d because I took too long to type

    Edit2: Realhotstuff says Sky3ds has a limit of 128gb as well. I saw 64gb from a member here but realhotstuff is probably more reliable.
     
  19. blazingwolf
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    blazingwolf GBAtemp Fan

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    I actually bought from realhotstuff when it came to my old DS flashcarts, but they were out of stock so I went with modchipsdirect. Hope it wasn't a mistake.
     
  20. Adeka

    Adeka Beta Tester

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    I always see them recommended here so I assume they are great as well. It's best to always compare your gateway to this screenshot when it arrives regardless of where you buy it from.

    [​IMG]