September 6th, 2008, 19:10 Posted By: bandit
R4SDHC R4 SDHC Revolution DS SLOT-1
Manufacturer: R4 (awaiting confirmation)
Site: Buy from Colourful Zone
Overview : The R4DS is the current top-of-the-line in DS SLOT-1 flash carts. It is just an amazing little device like original DS cart size, it is a complete solution with no need to purchase any additional components or deal with any messy software and truly the easiest media enhancer you have ever done; To simply put it, this is a must have peripheral for any regular DS/DS lite owner.
However, does the R4SDHC work just as well? Is this the cart that everyone has been wanting?
Quality/Usability : Rumors have been circulating the web that R4 is done for thanks to Nintendo or that R4 is still alive and kicking. There are even reports of the R4 Team releasing a new R4 that supports SDHC but at the same time, R4 has told me that there is no plan for SDHC support.
- 2nd Generation Storage Device (no booting tool required)
- Flush fitting Slot 1 Card
- Uses microSD/microSDHC Memory Card (supports memory size up to 32GB), FAT16 or FAT32 File System
- Supports any microSD/microSDHC Memory Card speed without lagging in game
- Supports Clean ROM, drag and drop. Works on any OS
- Built in NoPass
- Automatically detect save type
- Save directly to microSD Card, not to onboard chip
- Supports Moonshell and other homebrew. Open I/O interface
- User friendly skinnable interface. Touchscreen or button operation
- Supports rumble pak and memory pak
- Supports the WiFi game, DS Rumble Pak, DS Browser
- Supports changes of the background of Operation Interface
- Supports 4-scale-lightness adjustment (DS Lite only)
- Supports Soft Reset
- Supports Moonshell 1.6 Software Reset Function (press START key back to the R4 Menu)
So in my hands, I have a R4SDHC. Images have been floating on the web of this product along with a couple of different websites that seem to be fake. The URL on this packaging is http://www.r4sdhc.com. The site looks identical to R4's (www.r4ds.cn). There are some stuff that looks different between the two sites and the email on R4SDHC is a Gmail account. My contact at R4 has a "@r4ds.com" email. This makes me wonder if this truly is real or not. I know majority of people will probably call this a fake and I'm not denying it or agreeing with it. Coloruful Zone does state that this is the real deal.
In the mean time while people ponder whether this is real or not, we want to know if it works just like the original R4 but with SDHC support.
When it comes to the cards physical appearance, there is no difference with the exception of the sticker now containing a SDHC logo. The same stuff is included just like the original R4. However, this time its missing the installation CD. It still comes with USB microSD card reader, silicone DS cartridge keychain holder and a strap. Since no CD is included, you can download the latest firmware files at R4DSHC's website or here. As of this review, the latest version is 1.21.
The R4SDHC cartridge size is identical to that of the original R4DS cartridge. The microSD card is inserted through the top of the cartridge and fits flush with the cartridge. The microSD slot is not spring loaded so you will have to manually pull it out.
If you are familiar with R4 or any other flash cart, setting up the R4SDHC is the same. Simply downloaded the latest firmware, extract the file and transfer the files onto the microSD or microSDHC and thats it. Adding ROMs and Homebrew is simple. Once you have the microSD/SDHC card inserted into the card reader and the card reader connected to the computer, its a simple drag and drop. You'll need to setup two folders, one for your DS games and one for your Homebrew files.
The firmware or looks exactly the same. There is no difference in it. You'll still have the touch screen for selecting mode and folder. But when it comes to navigating through the list of games and files, you'll need to use the directional pad and "A" button to select. Upon loading of OS, you are given three options; GAMES, MULTIMEDIA and BOOT SLOT-2. When GAMES is selected, the file browser is located on the top screen. This is where all your selecting is done.
All it takes to change the look of the OS is four simple images and placing it into the "_system_" folder:
- logo.bmp -- Background of the Top Screen of R4's startup.
- icons.bmp -- Background of the Bottom Screen of R4's Startup.
- bckgrd_1.bmp -- Background of the Top Screen of R4's Explorer.
- bckgrd_2.bmp -- Background of the Bottom Screen of R4's Explorer.
Do not change the picture's name;
Make sure the picture is .bmp format, 8-bit/24-bit;
Make sure the picture is 253*192 pixels.
Testing the R4SDHC with commercial ROMs that I own, it works the same as the R4. There was no difference in functionality at all except that I can now store more games and homebrew on a single microSDHC card. Here is a list of compatibility list, go here. Even though this is for the original R4, the same applies for the R4SDHC.
Testing of homebrew worked flawlessly for most programs. There were only a couple that I encountered that did not work for me. The compatibility list link above will also give you list of homebrew files that work and dont work.
R4SDHC includes Moonshell which allows you to play multimedia files on your DS. In order to watch movies, you must use DPG tools (PC Software) to convert the files to a format Moonshell will recognize. Playing a movies is a nice feature to the R4SDHC but the quality will not compare to that of the PSP. Playing MP3s is a nice addition as well and plays flawslessly.
Conclusion : Overall, the R4SDHC R4 SDHC Revolution DS SLOT-1 works just like the original R4DS. There is no cosmetic change to the cart itself. There is no longer a spring in the microSD slot so you will have to manually pull the microSD card out. Functionality and compatibility is the same and nothing has changed except that you can now use microSDHC. I only tested this with a 4GB microSDHC but it is stated to work up to 32GB microSDHC.
Whether this is real or a fake, the bottom line is that it works. It may or may not be from the R4 Team (confirmation pending) but there are many other flash carts that is a clone of the R4 and they work just as good. For the price of $43, I feel this is overpriced for an outdated product. Yes, it now has microSDHC support but the UI (user interface) is the same. Its bland looking and there is no true touch screen navigation. So if you swear by R4 and only want R4, you may want to take a look at this if you're looking for SDHC support.
Please note that none of the "upgrade" products listed in this site are endorsed by Nintendo, Sony and/or Microsoft. DCEmu Reviews and DCEmu Network does not condone piracy. The primary functions of a "modchip" and/or "flashcart" are to allow you to play imported games and homebrew software that you legally own or simply just for experimenting with hardware. We in no way endorse piracy, and encourage all users to do the right thing and support the developers/manufacturers that support them. We do not take any responsibilities for any use outside of these parameters or where the use of such a device is illegal.
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