Guide: Install your own Wi-Fi chip inside the RG351P

Guide: Install your own Wi-Fi chip inside the RG351P

Last updated: 23NOV2020

Unless you purchased an RG351P during the first few days it was available, you probably do not have an internal WiFi chip inside your device. This is because they were removed due to speaker noise issues (see my whole post here, which includes a guide to reduce the noise).

But the RG351P has some really great online features, like the ability to download media (box art and videos), download and install new themes, download a cheat database, connect to your PC and load games wirelessly, implement RetroAchievements, and even use an online update tool for the ArkOS operating system. You *can* use an OTG adapter and a USB WiFi module to connect, but it’s a little clunky. So in this guide I’ll show you how some members of the community have installed WiFi chips to their device so they have a seamless experience.

Full disclosure: I have an internal WiFi chip on my device, so I haven’t attempted this myself, but I took copious notes when others were sharing their experience! Note that this is not a beginner’s guide: it includes soldering. If you have any questions or issues with this process, I suggest you post something in the Retro Game Handhelds Discord server (in the #RG351P channel).

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Refreshing a used RG350 device

Refreshing a used RG350 device

I recently had an opportunity to take somebody’s RG350 and give it an internal makeover. Someone on the RG350 subreddit had asked for help in getting their device up and running again after several months of trial and error. So I took the project onboard and also filmed the entire process so you could see all the tricks I used to get everything back into tip-top shape.

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How to fix RG351P internal WiFi antenna audio issues

How to fix RG351P internal WiFi antenna audio issues

Last updated: 16NOV2020 (see Changelog for details)

If you ordered a RG351P during the first week it was available (in mid-September 2020), it’s possible your copy shipped with an internal WiFi antenna. Once the devices were in production, Anbernic learned that there was some audio crackling in the speakers when WiFi was enabled. To fix the issue, Anbernic started to ship units without an antenna, which is a shame because the built-in WiFi option is one of my favorite features of the device.

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Low-profile analog sticks and custom buttons for the RG350

Low-profile analog sticks and custom buttons for the RG350

Last updated 23SEP2020 (see Changelog for details)

As an affordable handheld retro gaming device, the original RG350 is almost perfect. There’s a lot to love: the device is lightweight but feels nice and sturdy, and the d-pad and face buttons punch way above its weight class. I also really like how its d-pad below the analog stick and therefore not aligned with the face buttons, because this diagonal button placement makes the unit feel more balanced in my hand. This may come from those years when the Xbox 360 was my primary home console, but either way, I prefer this placement.

But after a couple months with the device, I do have some gripes. First, I wasn’t impressed with its low-res 320×240 screen resolution, especially after getting my hands on its more successful cousin, the RG350M, who has a nice 640×480 screen. Luckily, I was able to remedy this issue by installing an RG350M screen onto my device (read my guide here). The next part are those analog sticks. They stick out (pun intended) like a sore thumb, and make the device much less pocketable than it could be. Moreover, they are covered with these small rubber nubs, which can flip off and disappear in your couch cushions for days or weeks at a time.

So today we’re going to replace the analog sticks with a low-profile that also happens to improve the gameplay experience, too. And while we’re at it, let’s swap out the face buttons with something a little more colorful, just for fun.

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