EZ Flash 3-in-1 or M3 GBA Expansion Pack

Discussion in 'NDS - Flashcarts and Accessories' started by scottw182, Jun 10, 2010.

Jun 10, 2010
  1. scottw182
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    Newcomer scottw182 Newbie

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    I'm still trying to decide which Slot 1 card I want to get, but for Slot 2 devices, it looks like I have less options to choose from. The 2 I've seen recommended the most are the EZ Flash 3-in-1 and the M3 GBA Expansion Pack. The main thing I want to be able to do is store and play my GBA games, which is the best for doing that, as far as performance, and compatibility? Also, what unique features do the 2 have? Thanks.

    Note: I'm aware of the SCDS2's built-in GBA emulator, but from what I've read, it's not too great yet, so I definitely want to go with a Slot-2 device.
     


  2. Coto

    Member Coto GBAtemp Addict

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    Go for EXP 3 in 1. As most homebrew is compatible with it.
     
  3. emigre

    Member emigre Has complex motives

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    Their effectively the same though I beleive the M3 EXP supports real time support. IMO you can decide what Slot 2 to get by your slot 1. The M3 Real/ Zero ( nad I think iTouch) work natively with the M3 pack. WHilst the EZ3in1 works natively with teh Cyclo and the AK2 (with AKAIO) whilst it works with other carts by Ruldoph's GBAExploader.
     
  4. scottw182
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    Newcomer scottw182 Newbie

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    Please pardon my ignorance, I'm new to all of this. What is "real time support"?

    I've still been trying to decide on my Slot 1 card, but it looks like I'm probably going with the AK2, with the Cyclo being my 2nd choice.

    I'm trying to find the thread I read a few minutes ago. People were suggesting the M3 and named some things it does that the EZ3in1 doesn't.
     
  5. emigre

    Member emigre Has complex motives

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    Basically it means it supports the real time clock in certain GBA games i.e. the Pokemon R/S/E games where the clock is used for growing berries. Anyhows you can patch teh GBA question to make hte real time clock work.

    Personally I use the EZ3in1 as I have a AK2. It works pretty well and I've been able to finish off a number of GBA games but the battery usually dies after around twelve months. Fortunately, mine still works eighteen months on. Also it can funtion as extra ram for certain homebrew eg Quake 2 or for commercial roms like the Opera Browser as extra ram or as a rumble pack which teh M3 can't do. Judging by your choices I'd say you should get teh EZ3in1.
     
  6. scottw182
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    Newcomer scottw182 Newbie

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    Ahh...I see. In that other post I read, 1 of the things they said was an advantage of the M3 was a real-time-clock...so you're saying the EZ3in1 does in fact have it as well?

    They also said the M3 has the advantage of not having to flash 32MB ROMs to NOR, since it has a full 32MB of PSRAM. Does the EZ3in1 have to do that for every game, or just some? How long does it take?
     
  7. emigre

    Member emigre Has complex motives

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    1. Well the M3 supports it natively whilst the EZ3in1 needs to have the rom patched beforehand.

    2. You decide if you want to or not. Games that are 32mb, they need to be flashed to the nor and that takes about less than a minute if i remember correctly. For the smalles games (16mb or under) you can just save it to the sram without any difficulty.
     
  8. TM2-Megatron

    Member TM2-Megatron Predacon Commander

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    Not all games have a clock patch, though. Pokemon Emerald, for one.

    Personally, I use the M3 GBA Expansion with my CycloDS. Sure, the 3in1 is more popular with Cyclo users and it has built-in support, but I find the M3 to be a much better solution for the intended purpose... basically, playing GBA games. I get bored of rumble after about 10 minutes, and as that's the one feature the 3in1 has over the M3 it was never really much of a draw for me. Like the 3in1, the M3 can also serve as expansion memory for the Opera Browser or homebrew like Moonshell. The real-time-clock was the biggest reason for me to use the M3, though... it's the only slot-2 device currently in production that supports RTC, and it's the same price as the 3in1.
     
  9. albertar

    Member albertar GBAtemp Regular

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    What does run natively mean? And does hte m3 gba expansion work with r4 using the gba exploader? I'm considering an m3 gba expansion as well because of the rtc but i'm not sure if it is compatible with my r4 and does it work essentially the same way as the ez flash 3 in 1?
     
  10. how_do_i_do_that

    Member how_do_i_do_that Blue Wizard is about to die.

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    you can buy a M3 GEP here: http://www.gamersection.ca/product_info.php?cPath=30_36&products_id=730

    The "run natively" mentioned above refers to the built in loaders of various slot1 carts to support a specific slot2 device like the 3in1 or M3 GEP, your starting the GBA games from the the same interface you load NDS games from.


    The M3 GEP is a slot1 dependent device, that means it doesn't work in a GBA/SP/micro or GBA clone.
     
  11. albertar

    Member albertar GBAtemp Regular

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    Ah yes I was reading something about that. I actually just ordered the m3 ds real bundle pack (I couldn't find solely an m3 gba expansion pack alone) but I'm hoping it will run most of my 32mb gba games (aka pokemon hacks, mother 3, kingdom hearts chain of memories) etc. Also, because the m3 GEP is a slot 1 dependent device, does that mean that the m3 GEP doesn't have NOR? I'm asking because that's how the ez flash 3in1 becomes a standalone cart.

    If the above speculation is correct, then are there any GBA flash carts that work on both the ds and GBA that have a RTC? I want to plug it into my Retro Duo POrtable as well - though it seems that the m3 GEP will not be the solution for that. Which really isn't a problem because I can use the ezflash 3in1 as a standalone and upload games via NOR on there but because it lacks an RTC, it makes it difficult to play a lot of the pokemon hacks outside of the DS.. THank you!
     
  12. albertar

    Member albertar GBAtemp Regular

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    omg wow i did not see that link! I just emailed to cancel my order for the m3 ds bundle.
     
  13. albertar

    Member albertar GBAtemp Regular

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    Might be a futile question, but because you were able to find a store that actually sold a product that I was looking for, do you happen to know any other stores that sell M3 flashcarts? most notably the famous m3 perfect sd flashcarts that are GBA sized that just seems like everyone in the whole world are looking for? Thank you!
     
  14. Ericss

    Member Ericss GBAtemp Fan

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    Do you know where we can find the patch for making the RTC work when using EZ3in1?
    That's a bit concerning. After the battery dies, you can still use your EZ3in1 for loading GBA ROMs and saving on the SD, right? And I assume it doesn't affect its rumble and memory expansion functions?
     
  15. FAST6191

    Reporter FAST6191 Techromancer

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    Ruby and Sapphire I would usually point at GBATA from
    http://www.no-intro.org/tools.htm
    Emerald has since had a patch made, I link it and various other things in my list of troublesome GBA games
    http://gbatemp.net/threads/buying-a-gba-flash-cart-in-2013.341203/page-18#post-4756995

    The 3 in 1 battery varies, mostly though it is to hold saves so yes all functionality should work and if you rip the save right back to the DS slot cart it should continue working for everything.
    RTC on GBA carts is not something you will easily find these days -- it was only a handful of games that ever had an implementation of it and it was not without its downsides (mainly extra power draw on batteries which normally would only have to do SRAM. By the way the DS RTC/onboard clock has nothing to do with the GBA RTC and is not available to help GBA games/GBA hacks.

    By the way if 32 megabytes of PSRAM is something you care about (there are not so many games or hacks that need it) you can probably still find an EZ4 lite deluxe somewhere. You will need to mod the case but it does have 32 megs of PSRAM and 48 of NOR, and now supports SDHC as well.
     
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  16. Ericss

    Member Ericss GBAtemp Fan

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    Thank you!
     
  17. albertar

    Member albertar GBAtemp Regular

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    How do you get the emerald clock patch to work on emerald rom hacks such as pokemon glazed?
     
  18. FAST6191

    Reporter FAST6191 Techromancer

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    If the ROM hacks are done well then they should be able to stack up/be applied after the clock patch and still work. However the emerald patches did not get circulated that well and some hackers went emulator only and might not have accounted for it, or at least tested, when doing their hacks.

    If the patches do not combine well then you will have to fix one thing or another in the game, this may or may not quite easy thanks to the fairly extensive pokemon hacking tools.
     
  19. albertar

    Member albertar GBAtemp Regular

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    Do you know exactly what I should fix? I tried it with pokemon glazed (an emerald rom hack) and the rom wouldn't even load anymore after applying the clock patch
     
  20. FAST6191

    Reporter FAST6191 Techromancer

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    In this case* the only real reason for it to crash, assuming glazed and the clock fix are for the same region and version of course, would be if the fix and the hack use the same area for something. As the fix fiddles with the actual code of the game (trying to stop the game checking for hardware that is not there and replicating the hardware as best it can) it might have used an extra section to stash its extra code in, many GBA pokemon hackers also use the extra space and it might have overlapped, pokemon hacking tools even allowing you to change locations of such things very easily compared to most other hacking work done in GBA games.

    You then get to figure out if anything overlaps and possibly fix it if it does (you might also try asking the hack makers as this is not exactly a small fix that only you will benefit from).

    You could also try applying the patches in a different order (in this case clock fix first, hack second and vice versa) but that seldom does much other than delay a potential crash.


    *generally stacking up ROM hacks to a game is not a great plan, unless the devs actually built them to work together. This goes double if the hacks both attempt to influence the same aspect of a game. As trying is quick and free you might as well try though.
     

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