NPlayer Review

Discussion in 'Official GBAtemp Reviews' started by science, Jan 1, 2009.

Jan 1, 2009

NPlayer Review by science at 10:08 PM (9,700 Views / 1 Likes) 0 replies

  1. science
    OP

    Member science science rules

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    <!--coloro:red--><span style="color:red"><!--/coloro-->GBAtemp.net review of the...<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc-->

    <b><!--sizeo:14--><span style="font-size:12pt;line-height:100%"><!--/sizeo--><!--coloro:#ff7200--><span style="color:#ff7200"><!--/coloro-->NP<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--><!--coloro:blue--><span style="color:blue"><!--/coloro-->layer<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--><!--sizec--></span><!--/sizec--></b> <img src="http://gbatemp.net/news/NPlayer.jpg" border="0" class="linked-image" />

    Manufactured by: <a href="http://www.ndsplayer.com/" target="_blank">NPlayer</a>
    Review samples supplied by: <a href="http://www.mygamingmart.com/" target="_blank"><b>My Gaming Mart</b></a>

    By science - 30th December 2008

    <b>Review Contents & Index:</b><ul><li><a style="text-decoration: none;" href="#a">Introduction</a>
    - <a style="text-decoration: none;" href="#a1">Official feature list</a></li><li><a style="text-decoration: none;" href="#b">Packaging and Contents</a>
    - <a style="text-decoration: none;" href="#b1">Box Contents</a></li><li><a style="text-decoration: none;" href="#c">Cart Design</a></li><li><a style="text-decoration: none;" href="#d">Setting Up & Using</a>
    - <a style="text-decoration: none;" href="#d1">GUI (OS)</a></li><li><a style="text-decoration: none;" href="#e">Performance</a>
    - <a style="text-decoration: none;" href="#e1">ROM Compatibility</a>
    - <a style="text-decoration: none;" href="#e2">Download Play / Single-Cart Multiplayer</a></li><li><a style="text-decoration: none;" href="#f">Homebrew Support</a></li><li><a style="text-decoration: none;" href="#g">Additional Features</a></li><li><a style="text-decoration: none;" href="#h">Conclusion</a></li></ul><div class="reviewbreak"><a name="a">Introduction</a></div>The NPlayer is a relatively unknown cart, hidden in amongst the more popular carts such as the Cyclo and the AceKard. Is it worth it to stray off the beaten path, or should you stick with what you know? A great new cart, or a clone of another card? Keep reading to find out.

    <div align="center"><a href="http://science.gbatemp.net/npds1.JPG" target=_blank title="Click to view full size"><img src="http://science.gbatemp.net/npds1.JPG" width="220" alt="User posted image" /></a> <a href="http://science.gbatemp.net/npds2.JPG" target=_blank title="Click to view full size"><img src="http://science.gbatemp.net/npds2.JPG" width="220" alt="User posted image" /></a></div>

    <a name="a1"><b>Official Feature List:</b></a><ul><li>Less current, play longer time (About 10 hours working time)</li><li>New generation storage device , high speed of entering games,Support much more game </li><li>Flush fitting slot-1 card,the linker with safeguard for TF card</li><li>Uses MicroSD and MicroSDHC card, FAT16 or 32,the biggest supports 32GB(1 gigabyte(GB)= 1 billion bytes)</li><li>Supports any MicroSD and MicroSDHC card speed with no lag in game</li><li>Supports Clean ROM, drag and drop. Works on any OS</li><li>Automatically detect save type</li><li>Save directly to MicroSD card, not to onboard chip</li><li>Supports Moonshell and other homebrew.Open I/O interface</li><li>User friendly skin interface. Touch screen or button operation</li><li>Supports rumble pak and memory pak</li><li>Supports the WiFi game, DS Rumble Pak, DS Browser</li><li>Supports changes of the background of Operation Interface</li><li>Support Skin DIY by setting background and font colors on Main Menu and Game Menu manually and automatically</li><li>Supports 4-scale-lightness adjustment( DS Lite only )</li><li>Supports the Soft Reset.</li><li>Supports Action Replay cheat</li><li>Moonshell 1.71 support Software Reset function( Press START key back to the Nplayer menu)</li><li>DLDI auto-patching</li><li>Full download play support.</li></ul><div class="reviewbreak"><a name="b">Packaging and Contents</a></div>The NPlayer comes in a clear plastic blister pack that is sealed by two indents at the top, making it very easy to open and close. Inside is a cardboard insert with features on the outside, and instructions on the inside. Both printed lists can be found on the team's website incase you lose it. There is no microSD card reader included, which could be a plus, because bundled ones are usually cheap and can potentially corrupt cards.

    <div align="center"><a href="http://science.gbatemp.net/np1.jpg" target=_blank title="Click to view full size"><img src="http://science.gbatemp.net/np1.jpg" width="220" alt="User posted image" /></a> <a href="http://science.gbatemp.net/np2.JPG" target=_blank title="Click to view full size"><img src="http://science.gbatemp.net/np2.JPG" width="220" alt="User posted image" /></a> <a href="http://science.gbatemp.net/np3.JPG" target=_blank title="Click to view full size"><img src="http://science.gbatemp.net/np3.JPG" width="220" alt="User posted image" /></a></div>

    Overall, the packaging is very nice and looks professional (save for the Engrish).

    <a name="b1"><b>Box Contents</b></a><ul><li>1x NPlayer</li><li>1 x Instructions</li></ul>
    <div class="reviewbreak"><a name="c">Cart Design</a></div>The cart I received is white, and I have not seen any available in black. The build quality is very good. Compared to a real DS cart, they are nearly identical. The two main differences is the lack of plastic covering the contacts, and the NPlayer is slightly taller, causing it to stick out of the DS about 1 or 2 millimeters, although this is barely noticeable.

    There is no chip sticking out of the card, so it slides in smoothly. The microSD slot is not spring loaded, which I prefer, but some of you may not. The card goes in smoothly and easily, but it does not feel as if it will slide out unwanted.

    <div align="center"><a href="http://science.gbatemp.net/np4.JPG" target=_blank title="Click to view full size"><img src="http://science.gbatemp.net/np4.JPG" width="220" alt="User posted image" /></a> <a href="http://science.gbatemp.net/np5.JPG" target=_blank title="Click to view full size"><img src="http://science.gbatemp.net/np5.JPG" width="220" alt="User posted image" /></a> <a href="http://science.gbatemp.net/np6.JPG" target=_blank title="Click to view full size"><img src="http://science.gbatemp.net/np6.JPG" width="220" alt="User posted image" /></a>

    <a href="http://science.gbatemp.net/n3.JPG" target=_blank title="Click to view full size"><img src="http://science.gbatemp.net/n3.JPG" width="220" alt="User posted image" /></a> <a href="http://science.gbatemp.net/n4.JPG" target=_blank title="Click to view full size"><img src="http://science.gbatemp.net/n4.JPG" width="220" alt="User posted image" /></a> <a href="http://science.gbatemp.net/guts.JPG" target=_blank title="Click to view full size"><img src="http://science.gbatemp.net/guts.JPG" width="220" alt="User posted image" /></a></div>

    <div class="reviewbreak"><a name="d">Setting Up & Using</a></div>To set up the card, you must go to the website and download the latest card files. Simply drag and drop them all to the root of the card to get going. All the files that are needed can be seen in the screenshot below.

    <div align="center"><a href="http://science.gbatemp.net/filesneeded.png" target=_blank title="Click to view full size"><img src="http://science.gbatemp.net/filesneeded.png" width="220" alt="User posted image" /></a></div>

    To play DS and homebrew files, simply place them anywhere you want. Using the file browser you can load up files from inside any folder.

    <a name="d1"><b>GUI (OS)</b></a>

    Upon booting the card and viewing the menu, the card appears to be a clone of the R4. If you have an R4 and know what the menu looks like, you can skip this part of the review, as it is essentially the same.

    The GUI is what many people feel is the most important feature of a card. It has to be both beautiful and functional.

    Unfortunately, the NPlayer's GUI is quite ugly. When turning on your DS, it will auto-boot straight to the NPlayer, bypassing the DS main menu. You are greeted with three options: Game - Multimedia - Boot Slot 2. Game lets you browse through your card looking for .nds files, multimedia starts up Moonshell, and boot slot 2 boots up your GBA game, and adds a border around the game.

    <div align="center"><a href="http://science.gbatemp.net/np7.JPG" target=_blank title="Click to view full size"><img src="http://science.gbatemp.net/np7.JPG" width="220" alt="User posted image" /></a> <a href="http://science.gbatemp.net/n2.JPG" target=_blank title="Click to view full size"><img src="http://science.gbatemp.net/n2.JPG" width="200" alt="User posted image" /></a> <a href="http://science.gbatemp.net/np8.JPG" target=_blank title="Click to view full size"><img src="http://science.gbatemp.net/np8.JPG" width="220" alt="User posted image" /></a></div>

    When loading up a game for the first time, you are given the option of creating a save, continuing with out a save, or canceling the operation. If you already have a save, the game loads without these options. The save file is in the generic .sav format.

    You can change the brightness level in the menu, as well as turn soft reset on and off. Pressing X while a game is highlighted will allow you to delete the game. Thats pretty much all the options you can change in the menu.

    Despite the ugliness of the GUI, it can be skinned, and it is very fast, it doesn't lag at all.

    <div class="reviewbreak"><a name="e">Performance</a></div>
    <a name="e1"><b>ROM Compatibility</b></a>
    Since the NPlayer is more or less a clone of the R4, I made sure to test a few games that are problematic on the R4 to see how they work on the NPlayer.

    All files were tested on a 2GB Kingston microSD (Japanese made). Each game was played for a few minutes, saved, and reloaded. I will test microSDHC results once I get a new card reader that is SDHC compatible.
    <ul><li>42 All-Time Classics/Club House Games
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Bleach Dark Souls
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Contra 4
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Daigasso! Band Brothers DX
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Diddy Kong Racing
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Geometry Wars: Galaxies
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Hotel Dusk: Room 215
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>KORG DS-10
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Kirby: Canvas Curse
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Kirby: Squeak Squad
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>The Legend of Zelda: The Phantom Hourglass
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Magnetica
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Mario Kart DS
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Meteos
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Metroid Prime Pinball
    - <b><!--coloro:blue--><span style="color:blue"><!--/coloro-->PROBLEMS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b> -Game has slight lag in the menu, but gameplay is unaffected.</li><li>New Super Mario Bros
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Picross DS
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Pokemon Diamond
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Professor Layton and the Curious Village
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Star Fox Command
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Star Wars: The Clone Wars Jedi Alliance
    - <b><!--coloro:blue--><span style="color:blue"><!--/coloro-->PROBLEMS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b> -Game has slight lag in the menu, but gameplay is unaffected.</li><li>Super Mario 64 DS
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Tetris DS
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b> </li><li>Think Kids
    - <b><!--coloro:red--><span style="color:red"><!--/coloro-->FAIL<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b> -Game does not load, two white screens</li><li>Trauma Center: Under the Knife 2
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Wario Ware Touched
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li></ul>
    As you can see, the card has nearly 100% compatibility with only one failed game and a minor lag issue for games with graphical intense menus. Surprisingly, while some menus tend to lag, video cut scenes (such as in Professor Layton) work flawlessly. Games that don't work well on the R4 work perfectly fine on the NPlayer.

    <a name="e2"><B>Download Play / Single-cart Multiplayer</B></a><ul><li>42 All-Time Classics/Club House Games
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Mario Kart DS
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Diddy Kong Racing
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>New Super Mario Bros
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Super Mario 64 DS
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Tetris DS
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li></ul>
    As you can see, download play works very well. Not every game was tested, but going by these results, download play is 100%.

    <div class="reviewbreak"><a name="f">Homebrew Support</a></div>Homebrew works perfect on the cart, and auto DLDI is handy, saving you the trouble of patching your games.
    <ul><li>jEnesisDS
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>SNEmulDS
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Pocket Physics
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>ScummVM DS
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Doom DS
    - <b><!--coloro:blue--><span style="color:blue"><!--/coloro-->PROBLEMS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b> -Program loads up, but game does not start.</li><li>DS Invaders
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>WabbitDS
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>nesDS
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Lameboy
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>Negative Space
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li><li>ClIRC
    - <b><!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro-->PASS<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc--></b></li></ul><div class="reviewbreak"><a name="g">Additional Features</a></div>There are very few additional features, and the most useful is the cheat function.

    The card comes with a CHEAT.DAT file already loaded on, but it is in Japanese and using it caused games to lag for me. Using Narin's cheat database, I was able to load up the correct file (you have to use the USERCHEAT.DAT file, renamed to CHEAT.DAT) and use cheats easily. Selecting and using cheats was very easy. Using cheats caused no lag.

    <div align="center"><a href="http://science.gbatemp.net/n1.JPG" target=_blank title="Click to view full size"><img src="http://science.gbatemp.net/n1.JPG" width="220" alt="User posted image" /></a></div>

    <div class="reviewbreak"><a name="h">Conclusion</a></div>The NPlayer does what its supposed to do: play games. Most everything I threw at it, it was able to play. Although it may not have as many features as some of the other cards out there, thats not who this card is aimed at. If all you want to do is play some ROMs and homebrew, then this card could be for you. If you can find one for cheap, I would recommend picking it up. If you can get past the ugly menu and lack of extra features, then this card isn't as bad it could be.

    <!--coloro:green--><span style="color:green"><!--/coloro--><b>Pros</b><!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc-->
    + 99% ROM compatibility
    + 99% Homebrew compatibility
    + SDHC Support
    + Cheat System
    + Auto DLDI Patching
    + Multi Language Support
    + Soft Reset
    + Good Build Quality

    <!--coloro:red--><span style="color:red"><!--/coloro--><b>Cons</b><!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc-->
    - Lack of extra features
    - Ugly GUI
    - Clone of the R4 (Although it performs better than it)
    - Relatively unknown, may have no support

    <div class="reviewbreak"><img src="http://gbatemp.net/up/award_bronze.png" border="0" class="linked-image" /></a></div>
    The GBAtemp Review System rates products based on an award (Gold/Silver/Bronze/No Award)

    <b>External Links:</b>
    - <a href="http://www.ndsplayer.com/" target="_blank">Official NPlayer Site</a>

    <b>Where to buy?:</b>
    - <a href="http://www.mygamingmart.com" target="_blank">My Gaming Mart</a>
    <img src="http://gbatemp.net/up/mygamingmart.jpg" border="0" class="linked-image" />

    This review was written for GBAtemp.net ONLY. The article and all included photos are property of GBAtemp.net
    If you see this review on any other site please let me know via PM
     
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