RetroArch vs. other emulators?

Discussion in 'Wii - Emulation and Homebrew' started by Hyperstar96, Sep 18, 2015.

  1. Hyperstar96
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    Hyperstar96 GBAtemp Regular

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    Is there a quick rundown of how RetroArch compares to SNES9X GX, GenPlus GX, etc.? I've been out of the emulator scene for a while and would like to know what to upgrade/not upgrade.
     


  2. mightymuffy

    mightymuffy fatbaldpieeater

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    RA is worth it just for Final Burn to be honest: CPS1, CPS2, most Neo Geo and a load of arcade games.
    Focusing on SNES & Genesis though;
    SNES: definitely! 9xgx runs with skipped frames as standard, and has a heart attack on many of the Yoshi's Island stages. In comparison the games are buttery smooth on Retroarch. No mouse or lightgun support on RA though, and of course the UI on gx is much better: for my SNES rom collection I use wiiflow, plus custom covers, and my SNES sourceflow is set up so if I fire up most games it uses Retroarch, but for Yoshi's Safari etc it'll fire up snes9xgx - best of both worlds!
    Genesis on the other hand, well it's the same emulator, minus peripheral support and decent UI on Retroarch, so I stick with the standalone version.
    Others. NES? Retroarch, no question. GB and GBC? RA. GBA? Well that's like SNES, though the new emulator has buggered that one up :lol: - you'll wanna keep VBAGX for the likes of WarioWare Twisted at least. PC-Engine, Wonderswan, Virtual Boy, Lynx etc, well it's RA vs Wii Mednafen and it's 50/50-personal choice in my opinion there..

    Best thing is to just grab Retroarch and try for yourself - for the most part it's just a case of chucking the folder into apps, firing it up, then browsing to your rom collection.... then having a quick bash on a few games and deciding for yourself whether or not it's worth switching over, or implementing into wiiflow/postloader. ;)
     
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  3. Jacobeian

    Jacobeian GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

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    That's not true, Snes9x GX only skips frame when the emulation struggles to maintain 60 fps (i.e when the emulator misses one VSYNC, it will skip the next frame to try catching it up), it's "automatic" frameskipping, not forced frameskipping.

    So it only affects the few games that are hard to emulate fullspeed (mostly games that used additional DSPs). It's just that Snes9x-Next in Retroarch adds some speedhacks so emulation is slightly faster for these games. This can result in some accuracy loss and compatibility issues with other games though.

    However, for games still not running fullspeed in Retroarch, VSYNC will be missed but no frames are skipped, the result is that the game seems to run slower than if missed frames were skipped.
     
    Last edited by Jacobeian, Sep 19, 2015
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  4. mightymuffy

    mightymuffy fatbaldpieeater

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    ^^^ - *whisper whisper* Jacobeian here has never had a nice word to say about retroarch since day one mr OP, so take whatever that post says with a pinch of salt. 'Most' people on here will agree snes9x-next provides the better experience for most games anyway, but like I said at the end of my earlier post, you'll only know for yourself when you try it ;)
     
  5. Jacobeian

    Jacobeian GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

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    So you are saying what I was stating in my post is not true? I never said Next was bad or GX was better, I was only correcting some wrong assumption about frameskipping.

    Sorry if I sounded harsh with Retroarch before and somehow hurted your feelings but I do not consider myself as either a blind "hater" or a blind "fanboy" and I think my criticisms always were argumented. There are a lot of things that make Retroarch great (and snes9x-Next definitively is one of them) but it's not perfect either and there are also things that make my user experience more painful than with GX emulators.
     
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  6. mightymuffy

    mightymuffy fatbaldpieeater

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    No, as soon as you posted the automatic frameskip I thought 'whoops, he's right!' but just pretended not to read it :lol:, pushing more to the fact that whilst I agree you aren't a hater, you did seem to piss on the initial retroarch thread at most opportunities.

    I do agree with you too on RA being far from perfect - even arguing with randomiser about it on the recent thread: there's a slew of problems with it, but, like you say, it's definitely worth the OP giving it a try - no hurt feelings mate, I just thought you were carrying on like before. And yes - this time - I'll admit I was wrong about the frameskipping :lol:. Still prefer RA to GX though! :P
     
  7. sindrik

    sindrik GBAtemp Regular

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    There's another thing we can all agree: no emu is more advanced and perfect about SEGA emulation than the standalone version of GenesisPlus GX.
     
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  8. the_randomizer

    the_randomizer The Temp's official fox whisperer

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    I just tried RA 1.2.2 and it royally fucks up the vsync with Genesis Plus GX; in this instance it's preferable to use the standalone version. Why? Simple. It doesn't run a perfect 60 fps all the time in the recent RA, like when the levels go by at 60 fps, there are occasional dips in the framerate, it's really weird. The standalone never does this, however, meaning 1.2.2 is worse speed-wise than 1.0.0.2, so I might have to roll back to that once since a lot of things seem to be broken. Also, as for the Snes9x GX vs. Next, there is one thing the GX version never ever fixed, but Next did; the infamous tinny sound glitch. I believe that this was an error in the libogc library as the GX menu used Sinc or Hermite interpolation at 48 kHz whereas the Snes9x emulator itself ran with Gaussian interpolation at 32 kHz, hence the tinny sound. To get around it, you'd have to open and close the menu till it went away; Snes9x Next however, does not have this issue. Yes, neither emulator is perfect, but at least Next doesn't struggle with Star Fox or Final Fantasy VI, to name a few games.

    The tinny sound glitch and how it handles frameskip is a deal-breaker for me, I'm waiting for a standalone port of Snes9x Next on the Wii, it can be done, just a matter of it being made with a GUI. I should also note that mGBA Wii is far superior to VBA GX in every way, 95% of GBA games run at full speed, only a small handful don't quite run 60 fps, but everything else does, no jumpy speeds or audio crackling.

    I'd love to see someone try to prove that VBA GX is better in terms of emulation and speed/audio than mGBA is :creep:

    Edit: Oh and Snes9x Next rarely has code dumps.
     
    Last edited by the_randomizer, Sep 19, 2015
  9. MaeseJesus

    MaeseJesus GBAtemp Regular

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    I don't know, my experience with 1.0.0.2 couldn't be much better than it is (after you configure it's not a problem), and this comes from a guy that looked at RA with bad eyes at first ("How could a "multi-platform emulator" work well on this thing?").

    But i don't think it hurts to try or have, after all we're talking about homebrew, and not commercial software, we can be that picky (but it doesn't mean to ignore issues either), and the standalone emus have a plethora of issues too.

    For NES, SNES, GB, GBC, GBA (Although now mGBA seems to have taken the crown, which is exciting as it got better and better really fast), PC-Engine/TurboGrafx/CD variants, and even Sega consoles (Mostly MD/Genesis) it's what I use. It has better performance than most, so...

    I also have standalone emus too. I mean, it doesn't hurt to have both things, and you can choose which one you want depending on what are you going to play.

    I want to play a normal game? I go usually Retroarch for better performance and cleaner picture.
    I want to play something with a gun, like the Zapper or the SuperScope, or use cheats? I have the GX emulators
    I want some special feature for a specific game? I may use the homebrew that has it.

    For example, some Sega CD games doesn't work in RA, but I can make them work with Genplus GX. But for some reason I get a cleaner picture with RA, so if it's a game it can play, I'll use RA. Another example, for some reason the NES cores on RA fuck up when loading fan-translated games of Konami, like Bio Miracle Baby Upa or I'm Kid Dracula (Which is funny because they have very little text), but other emus can, but at the same time NES games won't run quite as well with those emus as they do with Nestopia core in RA.

    I can understand wanting things easy and fast, but I personally prefeer to try and see what i'm more comfortable with as none of the emulators one the wii are perfect, or at least not perfect "enough" to forget the others.

    Although a Standalone Snes9x Next could be nice. I don't know what would be different, but a separated version of Next could get more updates if needed to without waiting for the rest of the cores or RA itself.
     
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  10. zerofalcon

    zerofalcon GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    RA has a lot of potential right now, more and more emulators are added for different platforms. I know it's a matter of preference too, because the user interface is not as likeable than the GX emulators. Things change when the game is loaded... and after adjust settings, some cores run way better than the standalone versions. mGBA is the most perfect example, Final Fantasy IV Advance has a lot of slowdowns if played with the Wii standalone port, on the contrary, if played with the mGBA core there is absolutely no lag or slowdown. RA is my main cross-platform entertainment system right now for retrogaming, it has it's flaws that need to be addressed of course, but after some tweaks and correct settings everything works stable. And as MaeseJesus said, it does not hurt to have both choices.
     
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  11. the_randomizer

    the_randomizer The Temp's official fox whisperer

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    Is there any reason why the RA version of mGBA is so much faster for FFVI Advanced? It is good to have variety for emulators, gives people many choices and more enjoyment in my opinion :P Also, quick question, any luck with Snes9x Next by chance?
     
  12. Jacobeian

    Jacobeian GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

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    I am not sure but the reason might be standalone mGBA is outputing audio at 48kHz while Retroarch Wii limits itself to 32KHz (with the mGBA core internally rendering audio at 32768Hz for some unknown reason).
     
    Last edited by Jacobeian, Sep 21, 2015
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  13. MaeseJesus

    MaeseJesus GBAtemp Regular

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    The GUI obviously isn't as attractive as the GX emulators, and they look more user-friendly too, which is a plus for many.

    And I remember caring about that long ago. But as time passed I ended seeing that how cute the menus are is not that important when we're talking about emulators, because, for one, performance and how it works is more important, and two, you'll see the GUI (Or at least I see it) just for a few seconds before i boot the game I want to play.

    RA Gui is really simple and maybe too uhm... "retro"? for most today (as it is WiiMednafen, If I remember right), but it works, so I don't care too much.
     
  14. TecXero

    TecXero Technovert

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    The newest stable release of RetroArch for Wii is rather nice. Using the Snes9x Next core, all my SNES games run great. Snes9x GX was also good, it's just kind of dated at this point and doesn't run as well. I can't really think of any emulators worth using over RetroArch on Wii.
     
  15. nakata6790

    nakata6790 True Player

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    Does that include latest mGBA standalone port as well? Is the RA equivalent faster than that?
     
  16. zerofalcon

    zerofalcon GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    Yes, I tested latest nightly build and still have slowdowns with specific games (FF IV with or without bios, Golden Sun 2, Motoracer Advance, etc), overall the standalone port is working almost excellent. With RA mGBA core the already mentioned games worked better (excluding motoracer advance).
     
  17. the_randomizer

    the_randomizer The Temp's official fox whisperer

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    I'm guessing I was wrong in asking about the standalone Snes9x Next port, huh? Sorry :(
     
    Last edited by the_randomizer, Sep 22, 2015
  18. CobraStr1ke

    CobraStr1ke GBAtemp Regular

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    Any idea what the latest SNES9x Next standalone is? I was also going back and forth between retroarch and actual VC games, injects etc...any possible way someone here can tell me how to set an exact 240p in retroarch? I can get the games to display 240p in VC through the hidden button combination using the nunchuck and wiimote...but can never get it in retroarch to look just right as I dont see the exact resolution in the list of resolutions. Thank you for any help etc!
     
  19. zerofalcon

    zerofalcon GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    Try 512x224 progresive mode (240p). It looks exaclty as the VC snes games using a CRT TV.
     
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  20. the_randomizer

    the_randomizer The Temp's official fox whisperer

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    Speaking of RetroArch 1.2.2, there's a very weird issue I have with v-sync (I believe). Every now and then, I get a slight fps dip, not enough to effect sounds, but on Snes9x, mGBA, Genesis Plus GX, I see slowdown for a couple of seconds and have it pick up. A good way to test it is in a fast-paced game like Sonic, which uses a lot of strobe effects that flicker at 60 fps; normally, this is perfectly locked at 60 fps, but every now and then, it isn't smooth. 1.0.0.2 never had this issue.