micahmckittrick
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Nintendo 64 Emulation?

Wed Apr 17, 2013 6:05 pm

So I just purchased my Raspberry Pi model B. I have started to build and emulator using retropie and am able to run NES, SNES and all of that. I have been looking everywhere online but havent seem much of Nintendo 64 emulation. Is it simply not possible to do with the raspberry pi or am I just not finding the right forums? Thanks for any input!

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abishur
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Re: Nintendo 64 Emulation?

Wed Apr 17, 2013 7:20 pm

Even if someone did some MAJOR code optimization that made extreme use of the pi's GPU, I think the N64 is beyond the abilities of the pi. :-(
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kenshen
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Re: Nintendo 64 Emulation?

Wed Apr 17, 2013 9:17 pm

N64 on the pi? sure the pi has power it runs both ps1 and n64 see http://www.raspberrypi.org/phpBB3/viewt ... =78&t=6761

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LemmeFatale
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Re: Nintendo 64 Emulation?

Thu Apr 18, 2013 8:55 am

N64 emulation is not full-speed even on the more-powerful (ARMv7) Pandora (as mentioned in the above-linked thread). As Abishur says, I imagine it is beyond the RPi's capabilities.

It's worth noting that the above-linked thread only mentions getting Super Mario 64 playable, with some work. Getting one first-generation launch-day game running "playable" is not the same thing as catch-all, across-the-board N64 emulation, though for some reason people seem to forget this often. :P
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micahmckittrick
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Re: Nintendo 64 Emulation?

Thu Apr 18, 2013 5:38 pm

Well thanks for the reply guys. Thats what I thought. Any thoughts of possibly merging the Pi and the 64 on a hardware level? Past my level of knowledge at the moment but it would be sweet if we could somehow merge the two together. Or somehow find a way to load games onto a cartridge or hardware them in so that you can simply load the games straight from your N64. Dont know how we would do that but hey gives me something to work towards. Thanks again for the replies!

Kupiakos
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Re: Nintendo 64 Emulation?

Thu May 23, 2013 1:10 am

It might just be easier to buy a Nintendo 64.

LlyrP
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Re: Nintendo 64 Emulation?

Tue May 28, 2013 3:51 pm

I'd like to wade in on this if I may, before this thread dies.

OK, so the Pi emulates a PS1, just about. The specs of the original Playstation are appx:

33MHz LSI Logic MIPS R3000A
2MB system RAM
2MB VRAM

Bear in mind, the Pi can *only just* emulate this, with 3D causing severe frame-dropping and choppy sound even if the Raspi is overclocked - mine is at 1100MHz/500MHz with half and half RAM split, and Crash Bandicoot 3 is still lag city; while Final Fantasy 9 and it's pre-rendered backgrounds and low polygon count, runs pretty well. Bust a Move runs just as well as its SNES counterpart.

Now let's look at the N64:

~94MHz NEC VR4300
4-8MB RDRAM
SGI RDP/RSP graphics/dsp

The RDP/RSP doesn't pose too much of a problem from a technical standpoint because we could probably use accelerated OpenGLES to handle the graphics, but the main CPU is three times faster and a MIPS generation higher than the PS1's. A dynrec (dynamic recompilation) CPU core on the Pi wouldn't be able to keep up with the graphics emulation.

The net effect of this would be something similar to running PCSX2 at full whack on anything less than a Core i5: graphics would run more or less full speed, but the entire rest of the game would lag behind it.

A 1GHz ARMv7 with Neon would be *absolutely mandatory* for playable emulation.

TL;DR:
Without some other way to do the heavy CPU lifting, forget about it.
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JxPond
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Re: Nintendo 64 Emulation?

Tue May 28, 2013 5:30 pm

I think it really comes down to emulated vs interpreted code. I do agree that the pi probably can't fully emulate a MIPS R4300. At the same time I do remember playing Zelda:TOoT on a PII 300Mhz with a Voodoo2 Graphics card using ULTRAHLE as the emulator and at 800x600 which was greater than the N64's resolution of 320x240, so partial support probably is quite possible as the Pi certainly should be equally as powerful.

Will all the games work? I highly doubt it. Programmers utilize a lot of hardware quirks during a console's lifetime and those are usually really difficult to emulate properly or involve 1:1 emulation which is computing intensive.

The Wii for it's price is probably a better alternative for classic console emulation. It's not too much fun playing a game that's going to Slideshow on you.

LlyrP
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Re: Nintendo 64 Emulation?

Thu Jun 06, 2013 12:44 pm

JxPond wrote:I think it really comes down to emulated vs interpreted code. I do agree that the pi probably can't fully emulate a MIPS R4300. At the same time I do remember playing Zelda:TOoT on a PII 300Mhz with a Voodoo2 Graphics card using ULTRAHLE as the emulator and at 800x600 which was greater than the N64's resolution of 320x240, so partial support probably is quite possible as the Pi certainly should be equally as powerful.

Will all the games work? I highly doubt it. Programmers utilize a lot of hardware quirks during a console's lifetime and those are usually really difficult to emulate properly or involve 1:1 emulation which is computing intensive.

The Wii for it's price is probably a better alternative for classic console emulation. It's not too much fun playing a game that's going to Slideshow on you.
Remember the PII and Voodoo2 had much more power (watts-wise) to draw upon. The ARM is not optimised for speed, but for low power consumption. A lot of the work would need to be offloaded to the VideoCore and even then you're probably not going to get much more than (maybe) 10fps out of it. Don't get me wrong, I'm not trying to be a naysayer, I would love to be proven wrong,:)
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tboheeren
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Re: Nintendo 64 Emulation?

Fri Jun 07, 2013 9:43 am

If you want an easy N64 emulator that is also cheap, review an android stick like the MK808b. I play most games pretty fluently...

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