Noob with a few questions about diff flash carts

Discussion in 'NDS - Flashcarts and Accessories' started by IndubitablyCLN, Jan 11, 2013.

  1. IndubitablyCLN
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    Newcomer IndubitablyCLN Newbie

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    I guess I am not a total noob. I have used an R4 and owned briefly an EZ Flash IV. I also own two GBA flash carts (EZF IV and a 16 MB thing with internal memory).

    I am planning on buying a flash cart from realhotstuff.hk which seems to be on the up and up from what I have heard said here and elsewhere. They are currently having a sale and the following flash carts have caught my eye and are within my budget:

    Acecard 2i
    Acecard 2.1
    R4i
    iSmart MM

    I have quite a few questions some which apply to each cart and a few specific questions about the individual carts.

    I am concerned about battery life as I know flash carts tend to drain batteries faster than most carts. My question then is which of these would have the least drain? My understanding is that I could use my GBA flash cart with internal memory with any of the above carts, is that correct? Is there any difference between these carts ability to play home brews? And lastly, can any of these be used for online play?

    I am aware than the Acecard 2.1 and 2i are basically the same thing save DSi compatibility and load times which is a result of the DSi compatibility. My question about them is: How bad is the extra load times and is it just when the cart boots, when you boot up individual games, or both? I don't own a DSi right now so the compatibility thing is not an issue, although if the load times aren't too bad I might consider getting the 2i in case I get a DSi down the line.

    The R4i SDHC is obviously the cheapest choice amongst those, but I am concerned by what seems to be a torrent of knock-offs. How serious of an issue is this in regards to actual usage?

    As for the iSmart MM I know it is often compared to the hugely praised DSTWO and because of the current sale is actually in my budget, but what is it that makes it so great compared to other flash carts? Is it just the media player thing? Because I am not sure that is something that really interests me. Also I am aware that it has a GBA emulator, what is compatibility like on that? I couldn't really find much about it by Googling although that is not a huge issue since I own two different GBA flash carts.

    Finally, are there any other concerns I should have with regards to any of those carts?

    I know that's a lot and I appreciate in advance any help that you guys can give me.
     
  2. Rydian

    Member Rydian Resident Furvert™

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    http://gbatemp.net/t290097-which-flash-cart-should-i-get
    Those are the only carts we recommend nowadays.

    http://gbatemp.net/threads/the-ultimate-ds-battery-test-thread-in-the-world.289020/
    Standard flash carts have about the same battery life as using a retail cart.

    The iSmart MM and DSTwo are more powerful carts that can run their own special homebrew because they have additional hardware that other carts don't have (but they can still run normal cart homebrew).

    All modern flash carts allow online play, but with WEP or no security only. Period. End of story. Doesn't matter what game or what DS model, it's WEP only with flash carts.

    The extra load time for the Ak2i can be up to a few seconds, but you could just use one with a lower firmware version (as the load times were only introduced a few versions ago) to bypass that.

    99%+ of "R4" carts are knockoffs. Know how to tell? Anything other than "R4". The "R4 Revolution For DS" is the original R4. After that, the R4 team vanished. These carts come from China, and China does not give two shits about trademarks, so a bunch of other teams popped up, using the "R4" name without permission. ANY AND EVERY "R4" with anything else in the title (R4i, R4-SDHC, R$-III Hyper King, etc.) is something made by different people. So far the only one that's shown consistent support is the one listed in the first link here.

    The media player, RTS stuff, extra emulators, etc. The DSTwo is recommended over it because it's more powerful and has quicker support though... and it's still the price of a single new DS game. The GBA emulator is acceptable, but if you're using an original DS or a Lite, ignore it and just continue to use a slot-2 cart for native GBA stuff.
     
  3. IndubitablyCLN
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    Newcomer IndubitablyCLN Newbie

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    Thanks for the answers.

    The DSTwo is too expensive for me so it is out even if it is better and I do not have much interest in a lot of its extra features. At this moment with realhotstuff.hk's sale the iPlayer MM is only $14 which is the only reason I am even considering it. I am leaning towards it right now, because it's only 50¢ more than the Acekard 2.1 and actually a bit cheaper than the Acekard 2i.
     
  4. Rydian

    Member Rydian Resident Furvert™

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    Wait, before you buy anything, which systems do you actually intend to use the flash carts on? It's not just a question of if a cart will initially work on a DSi/3DS, DSi/3DS firmware updates will block flash carts that don't have their own updates to counteract that. For example if you have a DSi, no Acekard will work on the latest firmware because it stopped getting updates, and it doesn't look like the iSmart has been getting any updates for a while either.
     
  5. IndubitablyCLN
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    Newcomer IndubitablyCLN Newbie

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    I will be using it on a DS Lite at least for the time being. I have no intention of upgrading to a DSi or 3DS anytime soon, but I can't say I will never do that.
     
  6. Rydian

    Member Rydian Resident Furvert™

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    Well you should at least pick a cart that still gets updates for game compatibility, like the Acekard series. When new DS games come out they have new anti-piracy code in them, and carts need to update their software to play them. The iSmart software doesn't look like it's been updated since March if I'm reading the download page right.

    That said if you ever plan on DSi/3DS compatibility, the AK2i's already stopped getting updates and won't play on the latest firmwares, and the iSmart looks to be the same... but when you get a DSi/3DS you can just get a new flash cart then anyways.
     
  7. IndubitablyCLN
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    Newcomer IndubitablyCLN Newbie

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    Well it seems like nothing in my price range is still getting actively updated :glare:
     
  8. Rydian

    Member Rydian Resident Furvert™

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    The Acekard series is still getting some game updates via AKAIO, but that doesn't do anything to help it run on a DSi or 3DS.
     
  9. IndubitablyCLN
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    Newcomer IndubitablyCLN Newbie

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    I looked into AKAIO and it looked like it hadn't been updated in more than 6 months. Is it still being worked on?
     
  10. Rydian

    Member Rydian Resident Furvert™

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  11. IndubitablyCLN
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    Newcomer IndubitablyCLN Newbie

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    Good to know. I guess I will just get the Acekard 2.1 and upgrade someday if I ever get a DSi.

    Thanks for the help!
     
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