Last updated: 29NOV2020
Confusingly, the RG350 originally shipped in 2019 with an HDMI port, but did not actually support HDMI output until June 2020. Some retailers now ship their RG350s with HDMI support, but if you own an older system you will need to patch in the update yourself. This guide will help you get started with hooking up your RG350 to your TV, monitor, or even a capture card.
Table of Contents: Gear and accessories to take advantages of your HDMI-capable RG350 - HDMI cable - Portable monitor - Capture card Known issues with the RG350 HDMI patch How to patch in HDMI support to your RG350 Required tweaks for the best performance after patching HDMI
Gear and accessories to take advantage of your HDMI-capable RG350
HDMI cable: If you don’t have one already, you’ll need a Mini HDMI to HDMI cable, since the RG350 uses a Mini HDMI input. Most monitors and TVs use a standard HDMI cable input, but if you own a portable monitor like this one, you’ll want a Mini HDMI to Mini HDMI cable.
Portable monitor: This monitor is one of my favorite purchases of the past year. If you use a laptop and are looking for a second screen, or you want a larger, portable screen for your RG350 / Nintendo Switch / tablet / phone / Raspberry Pi, this portable monitor is pretty amazing. It has a million different uses: on the airplane, in the car, on your desk, in your backyard, you name it – and it has a bright, crisp 1080p display with a price that can’t be beat. I also like to pair it with a hefty battery pack to make it even more awesome.
Capture card: If you want to record your gameplay directly onto your PC or Mac, you’ll want a capture card. There are two ways you can go about this: buy the high-quality, industry standard Elgato capture card, or pay a fraction of that price with one of these bargain capture cards. Personally, I’d rather shell out less than $20 for the cheaper card (1/8th the price of the Elgato card!), and take my chances that it might crap out on me some day. It should be noted that the cheaper capture cards may have more lag than the Elgato card.
Known issues with the RG350 HDMI patch
- This firmware patch only works on RG350 firmware version 1.5.1. If you have an earlier firmware version, see the next section below.
- This patch will not work with Rogue firmware (to learn more about Rogue firmware, see this guide).
- If you have an original (non-M or P) RG350 on firmware 1.5.1, and you update to the latest HDMI patch (v1.1), the text in your GPMenu may disappear altogether. This is caused by an update in v1.1, which is described as “Solve the problem of the internal Chinese character menu and the garbled goldfinger in the Chinese simulator under the clear font.” Apparently, by fixing the Chinese character issue, it created an issue with the English text. If this issue happens to you, I recommend reverting to a backup version of your firmware, and installing HDMI beta v1.0 instead, which you can find here.
- I’ve only been testing this patch for a few days now, but my initial impression is not great. As you can see from the screen above, the text is very fuzzy, nearly illegible, and the games themselves have a weird scanning/line issue that is headache-inducing. This is because most monitors and TVs will try and force a widescreen aspect ratio, which will distort the image. So unless your monitor/TV has the ability to adjust the aspect ratio, you may have similar results. Luckily, most capture cards can adjust aspect ratios on the fly, and they look great.
- If you are experiencing a lack of audio, the consensus is that the HDMI sound output is directly related to the HDMI spec on your target display device. If possible, set your HDMI input on your display device to HDMI 1.4 specification and not HDMI 2.0 specification.
- Plugging in your RG350 while in SimpleMenu will not work, you must be in GMenu2X (the main interface) when first plugging the cable in.
How to patch in HDMI support to your RG350
- Verify that you are running firmware 1.5.1: In order to patch HDMI support into your RG350, you first need to verify that it is running firmware 1.5.1. The easiest way to check your firmware version is to go to Settings > System Info, and check the “compiled on” date on the page that is displayed. If you do need to update your firmware to version 1.5.1, check out this guide.
- Version 1.4 was compiled on October 10th, 2019
- Version 1.5 was compiled on October 18th 2019
- Version 1.5.1 was compiled on October 27th, 2019
- Download the patch: Once you are running 1.5.1, it’s time to download the patch and put it on your second (non-firmware) microSD card. Download the HDMI patch from Seong’s application repo here, then save it to your computer. Note that there are different files for the RG350/RG350P and the RG350M.
- Load the patch onto your second (non-firmware) microSD card: This is the card on the bottom of your device if you have an RG350, and it is the right card on the bottom of your device if you have an RG350M or RG350P. In other words, this should be the same card you load your games and ROMs onto. Transfer the HDMI patch OPK file to your second microSD card, into a folder named “APPS” (if you don’t have one already, make it now). This folder should be in the home directory of this card.
- Run the installation program. Turn on your RG350, the go to the “Apps” tab, and select the new app that appears, which is called “OS Update CN”. Confirm the install, and then the patch will install and your RG350 will reboot.
- Verify that HDMI is functioning. Go to the “Settings” tab, then select “GMenu2x”, and turn the HDMI setting to “on”. You should now be able to plug a Mini HDMI cable into the RG350 and your display of choice. Typically I follow this pattern: plug the cable into your display, then plug it into your RG350, and press a button on the RG350 to start the HDMI output. Note that when plugged in, the screen on your RG350 device itself will turn off.
Required tweaks for the best performance after patching HDMI
Patching in the HDMI update will mess up your audio settings on some of your apps and emulators. Here is a list of fixes taken directly from the developer’s update patch:
- XMAME: Enter and click the game to adjust Sound Frequency to 44100
- FBA: After upgrading HMDI, you need to set the default value of the FBA simulator. and open the FBA simulator and press start to enter the Default ROM settings. At this time, there are two options in the list: default run game settings and Delete all saved ROM configs. Enter the default run game settings first, set the audio sample rate to 44100hz, and return to the previous layer and click Delete all saved ROM configs, and then go to the list of games, just click on a game to view it, hertz defaults to 44100, which means success.
- FCEUX (NES): Enter any game, press L1, enter Settings, enter Video setup and adjust Video scaling to fc fast, then go back to the previous layer, enter Sound Setup, set Sound rate to 44100, go back to the previous layer, save all settings as default, press Save config as default so other games also have this setting, then return to the game screen, if the screen is not full, press the power button to add A to fill the screen,
- GBA: Open the display settings, and replace the image scaling with Full, Linear.
- GNGEO: Select OPTION, press A to change the Sample Rate to 44100, then press Save conf for very game to save as the settings for all games
- MAME4ALL: (this simulator has poor compatibility, so it is recommended to use FBA simulator) You can enter any game and set the sound option to 44.
Hopefully this guide will help you install the HDMI patch. If you have any comments or suggestions, please leave them below!