NDS Audio/Video playback?

Discussion in 'NDS - Emulation and Homebrew' started by Seriel, Oct 11, 2015.

  1. Seriel
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    Seriel Worshipper of Skiddos

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    Hey I know NDS homebrew is old, but still i'm curious.

    Does NDS have a way of playing Audio/Video? Preferably audio with the console closed. I don't mind having to convert to a weird format as long as I know which format!
    And with video, prefereably one which doesn't take up too much space.

    And finally, is NDS hombrew just a DS rom which is ran through a flashcart? I have an R4 ordered which should arrive soon. Can I use NDS hombrew on that?

    Thanks for any and all help! ;)
     
  2. nxwing

    nxwing GBAtemp Addict

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    Yep. You can use homebrew on pretty much every flashcart available nowadays. All NDS homebrew is also in the NDS format which has the same format as DS Games. If you want to play both video and audio, try Moonshell. The link that's in this post should redirect you to FileTrip and you just need to download it. Just run the exe and locate the folders since I think the automatic installer is broken so just drag the _moonshell folders (IIRC, there are two) and the moonshel.nds itself to the microSD card. For audio, moonshell should play it without a problem but as for video, you need to conver it to .dpg. Here's a converter that I use.

    — Posts automatically merged - Please don't double post! —

    Also, my guide may have a few mistakes so I'd reccomend just reading this guide for the installation process.
     
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  3. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    DS homebrew sort of comes in ROM form -- some will just be a standalone .nds file, others will be a small .nds file and want things in various directories all over your flash cart (in later years there was a push to contain it in a sub directory but it did not catch on as much as it could). If you go really early in the DS lifetime there is some different stuff again but most of that was recompiled for newer stuff or rendered obsolete by other tools. Most homebrew will have readmes or guides saying what they want.

    Audio/video. The lid is just a button and it is up to the program to choose what to do with it. To that end you will find many an audio player (which will happily play MP3 and possibly even some MP4/AAC if you ask it nicely) that will play with the lid closed. A £10 maplins MP3 player will probably do better for you but plenty around here used it as a media player.
    Video. There are a few things but it generally boils down to two
    1) Moonshell and DPG. This will work on any flash cart that matters. As well as being a nice audio player it will also play the so called DPG video format, DPG is just a tweak on MPEG1. There are quite a few DPG conversion tools and it even made it into some of the bigger encoder programs.
    2) You have an enhanced flash cart like the iplayer, ISMM or DSTwo. These will play normal videos/scene style like you might download off the internet (AVI, MP4 and XVID/divx and H264 in a limited capacity).

    Everything else video wise was more proof of concept (technically there is an xvid decoder in tunavids, there is a wavelet based player in dsvideo and a few others as well) and at least the player side of things there never ended up quite as polished as moonshell.
     
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  4. Seriel
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    Seriel Worshipper of Skiddos

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    Woah. It seems NDS homebrew isn't quite as primitive as I thought, it even seems to be better than 3DS Homebrew in quite a lot of aspects.

    This.. was not what I was expecting at all. I'm gonna have so much fun with my R4 <3

    — Posts automatically merged - Please don't double post! —

    Warning: Spoilers inside!
     
  5. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    Do you use VLC by any chance? That looks like you do not have any directshow decoders installed for what it is trying to decode. http://ffdshow-tryout.sourceforge.net/ should have some, or if you prefer http://www.cccp-project.net/ will do much the same.

    Yeah DS homebrew got pretty good when all things are considered, though at the time it did represent the best option for handheld computery things. Mobile phones have since risen up (they actually more or less put a stop to DS homebrew by virtue of most of the devs having a look at IOS (these days android) instead) so I am not expecting much from the 3ds.
     
  6. Seriel
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    Seriel Worshipper of Skiddos

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    I use VLC Media Player for Audio/Video.

    Speaking of which, is there decent emulators for DS? :P
     
  7. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    VLC is notable for using its own decoders for video, and being slow as you like comparatively but if it works... you will however need to install a decoder like ffdshow (or go manual if you really want and install everything individually) for avisynth to decode things.

    Decent emulators, actually yeah quite a few actually. Most will tell you that for good SNES you will want to go to a DStwo or something to use its onboard processor and it does well. However emulation of quite a few games can happen, to say nothing of all the games ported to the megadrive or PCE/TG16 at the time and later to GBA and DS (in case you have not read your R4 will not do GBA games, you will need a GBA slot cart for that like the 3 in 1 if you want to use it with your R4 or an EZ4 if you want to go standalone). If you have a PSP then that is by far the better option and it may well turn out that one game you want to play will not work, if you just want some 16 bit era games then it can be done and if you want GB/GBC and 8 bit consoles (and older) then you have many options for many things. If you do get GBA capability then you also gain a few more obscure ones as well.

    http://gamebrew.org/wiki/List_of_DS_homebrew_emulators is OK for a first pass. However I will also mention https://gbatemp.net/threads/gameyob-a-gameboy-emulator-for-ds.343407/ for the GB/GBC, though lameboy is pretty good as well.
     
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  8. Seriel
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    Seriel Worshipper of Skiddos

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    PSP? I might get one soon, i'm concerned that it might be bad in comparision to the Vita.

    Yeah I installed that CCCP thing and its working now.
     
  9. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    If you are used to the vita's fancy screen you will probably do well to avoid a PSP 1000. However the PSP was the emulation machine for a lot of people -- these days android is gaining reasonably good N64, saturn and even GC and Wii support and at the time some of the Chinese handhelds did certain things better (the DS and these Chinese handhelds often ended up with lovingly hand crafted emulators where the PSP was a bit more "well we have a compiler and this source code for a windows emulator") but even today by virtue of the dpad and buttons the PSP still holds its own if you want PS1 and 16 bit and older stuff.

    The DS does 8 bit and older very well and does pretty respectably at 16 bit, even more so if you end up with a DStwo, but for 16 bit stuff it is more "nice perk" rather than something I would suggest someone if they fancied playing some of the old stuff.
     
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  10. Seriel
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    Seriel Worshipper of Skiddos

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    Ah ok. Thanks!
    *waits for R4 to arrive*
    :nds:
     
  11. DanTheManMS

    DanTheManMS aka Ricochet Otter

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    I want to first say that I second everything FAST6191 said. He covered everything I would have said and more, in a much more concise manner than I would have managed (I tend to ramble). A few things I wanted to add to the discussion:

    Yeah, the DS homebrew scene was friggin awesome and I miss those days of coming home each day after highchool (later college) to check out GBAdev/GBATemp/PH/DCemu/Emuboards/others and test all the latest homebrew and stuff. It's hard to imagine a world without Android or iOS nowadays, but before those came out, the DS (and PSP I suppose >_>) were the kings of handheld gaming. Turning my DS into basically a smartphone (I even made a successful VOIP call via SVSIP!) before smartphones even existed; those were fun times.

    As FAST mentioned, for video your main one is going to be Moonshell and converting the videos to DPG format. For audio, the DS is actually powerful enough to handle straight mp3 decoding among many other formats -- lots of chiptune formats for example. Nice thing about Moonshell is that by default it does turn off the screen when the lid is closed, and you can use the L+R buttons to play/pause/next/previous. I used this feature a ton when I used my DS as my car's mp3 player, as I could just blindly grab the console without taking my eyes off the road and click to the next song. And by requiring both shoulder buttons to be pressed rather than just one, it also worked in my pocket as an mp3 player without accidentally skipping tracks.

    One audio player not mentioned that I enjoy is called "LMP-ng" which stands for Lick's Media Player... Next Generation or something I dunno. It's fun in that it's an iPod Classic clone, using the click-wheel interface with your DS stylus and everything. Inefficient yes, but it's a lot of nostalgic fun if you ever owned an iPod Classic; plus, it can shuffle the entire music library on your whole microSD card which is handy sometimes (Moonshell can only shuffle within the current folder). You'll need to make sure you download the skin files and put them in the right spot on your SD card or else you won't be able to see anything.

    Other homebrew I'd suggest: Do you like sandboxed playgrounds? Check out "World of Sand DS" or "Pocket Physics". Like the Portal games? StillAliveDS is a great 2D adaptation, plays like the Flash version. Love to draw? "Colors! DS" actually utilizes pressure sensitivity for drawing (official DS games were not allowed to do this because of differences in touchscreen hardware versions over the years, which the homebrew gets around by having a built-in pressure calibration menu), and it actually went on to become a commercial success! If you like rhythm games there's VideoGamesHero and AmplituDS. There's WabbitDS for emulating the TI-83+ calculator among possibly others, DSx86 for running DOS games, even stuff for Neo Geo and Wonderswan (may not be compatible with your R4). There's DSReader for e-book reading, and this one is special in that it can import standard Windows *.ttf font files, alongside some other good features -- I read the entirety of the 7th Harry Potter book on my DS via DSReader, white text on black background, Arial font size 10, medium subpixel anti-aliasing, much more pleasant on the eyes than you'd expect! And of course there's DSLinux, a full-fledged operating system port to the DS, but without any slot-2 RAM that's not going to be very useful for you on your R4 so I won't go into further detail on that.

    For image viewing, Moonshell will be able to handle your standard everyday images, but perhaps slowly depending on how big the image is -- 66 MHz is not a lot of processing power to work with. Also, if the decoded image can't fit into the DS's meager 4 MB of RAM then there's nothing Moonshell can do about it. Instead, check out the "Comic Book DS" program, which sadly does require you to pre-convert your images into a special format on your computer first, but once done it's by far the best way to view large image collections on the DS. Good for comic books, as the name suggests.

    Getting back on track, I'd agree with FAST that 16-bit emulation is going to be a bit hit-or-miss depending on your expectations. I myself did tons and tons of testing with SNEmulDS so I'm a bit partial to it. As far as I know, it still remains the only SNES emulator for the DS with support for the SNES Mouse being used via the DS's touchscreen. That said, lots of games are quite playable as long as you're okay with changing some graphics settings manually throughout gameplay, and in fact SOME games do work perfect...ish... As for jEnesisDS, I just wasn't a Genesis person myself so I could never get too much into it. 8-bit stuff on the DS is great. I played tons of Lameboy for GBC although there are other options out there nowadays. NES DS is awesome, I absolutely love being able to rewind/fastfoward in real-time via the L and R buttons, which is the only way I ever managed to beat the Super Mario Frustration romhack (which does in fact exist, I can provide the .ips patch file if anyone's interested, you must provide your own ROM).

    Like I said, I tend to ramble, my apologies hehe. I had a real passion for this stuff back in the day, and even though it's now literally 5-6 years later, I never quite managed to shake my excitement over it.

    EDIT: "adaptation" not "port"
     
    Last edited by DanTheManMS, Oct 12, 2015
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  12. Seriel
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    Seriel Worshipper of Skiddos

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    Alright, my R4 arrived.
    Now i'll take a look into these and see whats what.
     
  13. Seriel
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    Seriel Worshipper of Skiddos

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    Ah it seems Moonshell doesn't work on R4 SDHC.
    Any alternatives?
     
  14. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    There is no great reason for moonshell not to work. It has some more points of failure than some other homebrew but in the end it is still just dldi homebrew and if you can not get it booting then you have bigger problems.
     
  15. Seriel
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    Seriel Worshipper of Skiddos

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    Ah sorry I was being an idioit.
    It works now.
    I'll go find that converter and see if videos work.
    I now have MP3 audio with the lid closed! Perfect! :D
     
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