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What are the most accurate emulators per platform?

Mar 16, 2011
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missing shadows

JESUS CHRIST HOW HORRIFYING
The point of emulation is accuracy and preservation. Because of byuu's efforts the SNES is effectively immortalized exactly as it was. That should be the endgoal for emulation. Running Starfox in all of its 10-15ish frames per second glory is more meaningful then running it incorrectly at 30. Having the option to run it incorrectly for a better play experience is fine but accuracy is important.
 

TheD

The Detective
Mar 29, 2012
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The trash cans outside your house.
For the same reason you can find Mario-branded and Pokemon-branded paid games on Android: nobody gives a shit about copyright or open source licenses.
The link programs do give out the source code on https://code.google.com/p/emu-ex-plus-alpha/
Being a paid for program does not break the GPL AFAIK (as long as you give out the source code).

But some other cunts do try and sell software on the play store that is based on GPLed code yet do not give out the sources (lots of doom engine ports come to mind), someone should really crack down on the scumbags.
 

televator

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Sep 21, 2011
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I think accuracy is important. I think that' a great basis, but once that's established... why not have options to emulate a Genesis running at 10 MHz? Why not have an accurate PS1 emulator that also lets you drop in some AA filters? Am I talking out of my ass? Is it not possible to have both accuracy with added customization options? I understand that changing some things might break other things in a game, but at least it could be an option that can be turned off.
 

Monado Blade

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Jul 11, 2011
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Did not realise Byuu renamed Bsnes into Higan and added other console emulation as well. How's the emulation status for the other consoles? Are they on the same level as the SNES component?

Having a highly accurate emulator that emulates most Nintendo consoles is pretty awesome (if you have the beefy PC to do it that is)
 

byuu

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Feb 6, 2013
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The other emulator cores are pretty bad at the moment. NES is on-par with FCEU, but with less mapper support. GB/C/A only came about because I needed large portions of them for the SNES emulation (GB for SGB, ARM for GBA, etc.)

They'll get better with time, but it's unlikely they'll ever be as strong as the SNES support. Don't have the time or money to run hardware testing rigs for the other systems, so I'm limited to existing documentation there.
 

Tain

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Jun 13, 2004
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Yo byuu, bsnes is the only Windows emulator for anything I've tried that actually can run a game without screen tearing or stuttering or lag. Generally if I want to get rid of tearing I have to turn on some vsync option that makes a few frames of lag, but bsnes with aero off ain't like that.

How'd you do it?

Tons of respect and thanks, btw.
 

tborsje

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Nov 13, 2010
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Why do so many emulators on Android cost money? Aren't these open source projects?
As is typical for the shitty smartphone market, there are a lot of people trying to get rich by ripping off others.
For proper GPL-abiding, free emulators check out Retroarch, a frontend which includes emulation engines for:
RetroArch Plays the following kind of games:
- PlayStation 1 (emulator: PCSX ReARMed)
- Super Nintendo (emulator: SNES9x Next)
- Nintendo Entertainment System (emulator: FCEUmm / NEStopia)
- GameBoy / GameBoy Color (emulator: Gambatte)
- GameBoy Advance (emulator: VBA Next) (*)
- Arcade (emulator: Final Burn Alpha)
- Neo Geo Pocket Color (emulator: Mednafen NGP)
- Virtual Boy (emulator: Mednafen VB)
- Sega Genesis/Mega Drive (emulator: Genesis Plus GX)
- Sega Master System/Sega Game Gear (emulator: Genesis Plus GX)
- Sega CD / Mega CD (emulator: Genesis Plus GX)
- PC Engine / PC Engine CD (emulator: Mednafen PCE Fast)
- WonderSwan Color / Crystal (emulator: Mednafen Wonderswan)
- Cave Story (game engine: NX Engine)
- Doom 1 / Doom 2 / Ultimate Doom / Final Doom (game engine: prBoom)
And Mupen64Plus AE for N64.

Anyone knows if someone finally coded an emulator for n64 that shows the stadium screens in mario kart 64 as well as the special effects in perfect dark?
I believe that they've supported that for many years, unless I'm wrong? You just need to enable framebuffer options if I recall.

The point of emulation is accuracy and preservation.
The point of emulation should be whatever the user believes it should be. And the vast majority of users just want to play games in the most enjoyable way. BSNES is a great, fascinating project but it is strictly enthusiast level.

Dolphin and PCSX2 would need supercomputers to render in realtime if they were as cycle accurate as BSNES, but I'm not snobby enough to cast them away when I can enjoy hundreds of fantastic games from that generation using them. Ditto with N64 emulation - as far as I know there are no emulators remotely 'accurate' in that sense, but I've spent hundreds of hours replays old games in 1080p over the years.
 

daninthemix

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Jul 7, 2010
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The point of emulation should be whatever the user believes it should be. And the vast majority of users just want to play games in the most enjoyable way. BSNES is a great, fascinating project but it is strictly enthusiast level.
Agreed 100%. Some people like HLE/hi-res rendering, filters and shader, and others want cycle accuracy, low-res blockiness and scanlines.

To each his own.
 

GavinGT

Banned
Jan 26, 2007
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I find it interesting that, barring Gamecube and PS2 emulation, a JTAG/RGH Xbox 360 is the only way to emulate all previous platforms including the original Xbox.
 

SparkTR

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Jul 16, 2008
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I found Xebra to be a pretty great PSX emulator in regards to accuracy. You can't force those insane IQ/resolution improvements like ePSXe, but it's pretty much exactly how I remember them being back in the day.
 

linko9

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Apr 28, 2011
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I find it interesting that, barring Gamecube and PS2 emulation, a JTAG/RGH Xbox 360 is the only way to emulate all previous platforms including the original Xbox.
That's a really weird way of saying "the only thing that can emulate some xbox games is the 360." Can the 360 emulate saturn? DC? I honestly have no idea, but obviously the PC can emulate more platforms than the 360, as you yourself pointed out.
 

GavinGT

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Jan 26, 2007
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That's a really weird way of saying "the only thing that can emulate some xbox games is the 360." Can the 360 emulate saturn? DC? I honestly have no idea, but obviously the PC can emulate more platforms than the 360, as you yourself pointed out.
I'll give you Saturn. And Dreamcast emulation is limited but actively being worked on. But I'll agree that I worded it oddly.
 
Mar 16, 2011
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As is typical for the shitty smartphone market, there are a lot of people trying to get rich by ripping off others.
For proper GPL-abiding, free emulators check out Retroarch, a frontend which includes emulation engines for:


And Mupen64Plus AE for N64.



I believe that they've supported that for many years, unless I'm wrong? You just need to enable framebuffer options if I recall.


The point of emulation should be whatever the user believes it should be. And the vast majority of users just want to play games in the most enjoyable way. BSNES is a great, fascinating project but it is strictly enthusiast level.

Dolphin and PCSX2 would need supercomputers to render in realtime if they were as cycle accurate as BSNES, but I'm not snobby enough to cast them away when I can enjoy hundreds of fantastic games from that generation using them. Ditto with N64 emulation - as far as I know there are no emulators remotely 'accurate' in that sense, but I've spent hundreds of hours replays old games in 1080p over the years.
Eventually bsnes will run on toaster ovens and will still be an immaculate emulator 1000 years from now. The n64 emulators out right now will run on toaster ovens as well but will be a poor representation of the original thing (and the original thing will probably be unplayable). I have nothing but respect for anyone who makes emulators but people who bitched about bsnes's requirements (or any emulator striving for higher accuracy) deserve to be shamed.

Also emulation is whatever the emulator-creator sets out to do, not you.
 

SparkTR

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Jul 16, 2008
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I still fail to see how emulation is not piracy.

The ROMS are not owned and ripped by 99% of the ppl using emulators.
Emulators themselves are just software not anything illegal. How people get their games is different.
 

Durante

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Oct 1, 2006
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Yo byuu, bsnes is the only Windows emulator for anything I've tried that actually can run a game without screen tearing or stuttering or lag. Generally if I want to get rid of tearing I have to turn on some vsync option that makes a few frames of lag, but bsnes with aero off ain't like that.
Could it be that you are running your monitor at 60 Hz and emulating systems that output 59.94 Hz? Because obviously that won't end well.

PSP: JPCSP (this is still bad)
I think PPSSPP will overtake it this year in compatibility. It's already much faster and has a higher quality codebase.
 

Rich!

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Dec 16, 2009
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I still fail to see how emulation is not piracy.

The ROMS are not owned and ripped by 99% of the ppl using emulators.
Saying that "emulation is piracy" is utter ignorance.

Piracy is piracy. Emulation is not.
 

mocoworm

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Mar 24, 2010
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Thread is about whats the best emulator, not a question of ethics.

Edit: Besides, there are alot of really great old games that people have missed out on, options to play them are very limited..
I absolutely understand that the emulator itself is not illegal, but as soon as you dload a ROM and play it ... you are committing piracy. Why else are ppl asking what the best emulator is if not to play ROMS ?

Saying that "emulation is piracy" is utter ignorance.

Piracy is piracy. Emulation is not.

This is not to beat up on this thread, more a statement of fact that I have mentioned before in emulation discussion and is always denied by ppl who use them. I'm not asking ppl to stop discussing it. I don't make the rules. It just seems hypocritical to be down on piracy and then use emulators.

If there is / was a PS3 or 360 emulator and you were playing it on a PC and dloading the game ROMS it is the same thing as doing it with a NES / SNES / N64 / PS1 /PS2 ect etc.

At what point is copyrighted software able to be sought, dloaded and played for free without it being piracy ? 1 year, 2 years ... 3, 5, 10 ??
 

GavinGT

Banned
Jan 26, 2007
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At what point is copyrighted software able to be sought, dloaded and played for free without it being piracy ?
As far as this forum is concerned, it's never okay. But you can't automatically assume that anyone here is doing that, even if it's very likely.
 

Monado Blade

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Jul 11, 2011
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The other emulator cores are pretty bad at the moment. NES is on-par with FCEU, but with less mapper support. GB/C/A only came about because I needed large portions of them for the SNES emulation (GB for SGB, ARM for GBA, etc.)

They'll get better with time, but it's unlikely they'll ever be as strong as the SNES support. Don't have the time or money to run hardware testing rigs for the other systems, so I'm limited to existing documentation there.
Did not expect the man himself to reply my question! Thanks a lot, byuu and keep up the good work.

Also... it didn't take long for the thread to derail into a piracy crapshoot.
 

tborsje

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Nov 13, 2010
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Eventually bsnes will run on toaster ovens and will still be an immaculate emulator 1000 years from now. The n64 emulators out right now will run on toaster ovens as well but will be a poor representation of the original thing (and the original thing will probably be unplayable). I have nothing but respect for anyone who makes emulators but people who bitched about bsnes's requirements (or any emulator striving for higher accuracy) deserve to be shamed.
Well I would love to see someone dissect the n64 hardware to the same level as was done in BSNES, but it probably won't happen. Emulators will get better though. In 1000 years time, perhaps people will be able to play n64 on toaster ovens. Maybe the scanline won't be rendered correctly, or differences in refresh rates will see the sound being out by 0.01 seconds.

People probably won't notice, they'll be enjoying playing games. How well it represents the 'original thing' is quite irrelevant to most people, unless they are planning on setting up some sort of gaming museum or something.

Also emulation is whatever the emulator-creator sets out to do, not you.
Right. Which is for 95% of emulator-creators out there, a chance for people to play games from older systems, usually with a cleaner image or rendering improvements for 3D games.

If there is / was a PS3 or 360 emulator and you were playing it on a PC and dloading the games it is the same thing as doing it with a NES / SNES / N64 / PS1 /PS2 ect etc.

At what point is copyrighted software able to be sought, dloaded and played for free without it being piracy ?
I played my PS2 games on an emulator by ripping them through the DVD drive on my PC, and obtained the ROM files for the bios by executing an elf file on my PS2 that dumped the files onto a USB drive. Where's the piracy here?
 

mocoworm

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Mar 24, 2010
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I played my PS2 games on an emulator by ripping them through the DVD drive on my PC, and obtained the ROM files for the bios by executing an elf file on my PS2 that dumped the files onto a USB drive. Where's the piracy here?
Congratulations. You are in the 1%

As far as this forum is concerned, it's never okay. But you can't automatically assume that anyone here is doing that, even if it's very likely.
Asking a question is not accusing anyone in particular. It's just a question I have asked before in emulation threads that no-one ever answers. It seem that people who use them and dload ROMS want to pretend it's not piracy.
 

GavinGT

Banned
Jan 26, 2007
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The other emulator cores are pretty bad at the moment. NES is on-par with FCEU, but with less mapper support. GB/C/A only came about because I needed large portions of them for the SNES emulation (GB for SGB, ARM for GBA, etc.)

They'll get better with time, but it's unlikely they'll ever be as strong as the SNES support. Don't have the time or money to run hardware testing rigs for the other systems, so I'm limited to existing documentation there.


Asking a question is not accusing anyone in particular. It's just a question I have asked before in emulation threads that no-one ever answers. It seem that people who use them and dload ROMS want to pretend it's not piracy.
I didn't mean that you were accusing anyone in particular. I guess I should have said "One can't automatically assume that anyone here is doing that". But if there's anyone here who admits to downloading ROMs, they get banned. So nobody here is going to defend the position that it's not piracy. But as long as there are legal avenues, we're innocent until proven guilty.
 

Rich!

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Dec 16, 2009
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Congratulations. You are in the 1%



Asking a question is not accusing anyone in particular. It's just a question I have asked before in emulation threads that no-one ever answers. It seem that people who use them and dload ROMS want to pretend it's not piracy.
Then why not start a new thread for it instead of shitting up the discussion in this one?
 

NekoFever

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Feb 21, 2007
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This article is great if you want to read up on accurate emulation and why it's important: http://arstechnica.com/gaming/2011/08/accuracy-takes-power-one-mans-3ghz-quest-to-build-a-perfect-snes-emulator/

It also shows how far the quest for perfect emulation can go:

Take the case of DICE, the digital integrated circuit emulator. Here is an emulator that works at the transistor level for absolutely perfect recreation of the very first video games ever created. To run Pong at about 5-10fps, DICE requires a 3GHz processor. Yes, you read that right: no computer processor at this time that can run Pong at the circuit level at full speed.
 

tborsje

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Nov 13, 2010
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Congratulations. You are in the 1%
So what if I want to discuss emulation on NeoGAF? It would somehow by hypocritical for the forum to allow it? I bet a lot of the supposed '1%' would be on gaming forums like NeoGAF anyway.
 

mothball

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Dec 3, 2009
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The nocash author recently rose from the dead to release a PS1 emulator. Anyone know how it stacks up to the usual lot?

I also wonder if that DS core for higan is still being worked on.
 

2+2=5

The Amiga Brotherhood
Jul 28, 2011
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No love for amiga and neogeo?
Winuae for amiga and neoragex for neogeo.
 

Tain

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Could it be that you are running your monitor at 60 Hz and emulating systems that output 59.94 Hz? Because obviously that won't end well.
That's the normal case with emulation, for sure, and when you do that you obviously get screen tearing (or stuttering when using vsync) but many emulators (including bsnes and MAME) can very slightly alter the timing of the emulated system to match my display. Thing is, MAME has to use D3D's "standard" vsync to do that (which, in MAME's case, makes for something like three frames of lag on my PC), where bsnes seems to get perfect results in D3D without having to.
 

mattp

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Jun 10, 2009
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i hadn't looked at bsnes in awhile, i didn't know about the name change. but i just went to the site and i see it supports emulation of a bunch of consoles now. are they all slavishly accurate emulation like snes too?

edit: should have read the whole thread first heh
 

Damian.

Banned
Jun 19, 2012
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Higan is the most accurate for NES, SNES, Gameboy, Gameboy Color. And Nintendo DS will soon be on the list.
I used BSNES for a while, but had to stop because even with a Core i7 at 4.7GHZ, I still got some slowdowns, hiccups and sound skipping issues that ruined the experience for me. Is Higan any better, or is my case just random bad luck with the emulator?
 

shuri

Banned
Jun 8, 2004
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Perfect emulation is what we need and should want. especially for games. I fail to understand how so called fans of speedruns don't care about accurate emulation considering how much of an impact it has on competitive gameplay.

I hang out on another forum related to arcade gaming, and lots of people have noticed A.I reactions differences regarding performance on the real hardware vs mame. And lets not get started about dat input frame lag..
 

Earthpainting

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May 7, 2006
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I used BSNES for a while, but had to stop because even with a Core i7 at 4.7GHZ, I still got some slowdowns, hiccups and sound skipping issues that ruined the experience for me. Is Higan any better, or is my case just random bad luck with the emulator?
That depends on the game you're trying to play. While it is possible that your beefy rig still might not be enough to handle some moments, sometimes stuttering or slowdown is actually what the game is like on the real hardware.
 

Game Guru

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Dec 14, 2010
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I absolutely understand that the emulator itself is not illegal, but as soon as you dload a ROM and play it ... you are committing piracy. Why else are ppl asking what the best emulator is if not to play ROMS ?
Because if someone owns a cartridge and rips a ROM from it to play in an emulator for personal use, that's completely legal. It's nothing different than making a videotape of a movie you own for personal use. Where it starts to be piracy is when someone makes it available to people who don't own the game itself, much as you can't give those videotapes you made of the movie to everyone you know.

It would also be legal for someone to obtain ROMs from the copyright holder themselves. For example, Sega sells their Mega Drive/Genesis games as digital downloads and they are nothing more than ROMs in a Mega Drive/Genesis emulator.
 

Robin64

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Dec 7, 2011
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I appreciate the effort to preserve SNES gaming in this way, but my PC often struggles with BSNES so I just use SNES9X instead. Accuracy comes at a hefty cost.
 

womp

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Jun 3, 2006
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Why do so many emulators on Android cost money? Aren't these open source projects?
In his defense, he packs a ton of features (built in Wii mote Bluetooth/iCade support), a great UI and constant updates into them.

I don't mind throwing the guy the cash. Open sourced or not, they are still the best available on the platform.