Switch Homebrew News: N64 Dynarec for the Switch seeing good progress paving way for better N64 emulation, In-Home Switching gets Audio support and NX-Shell 1.10 released with FTP support and more!
In these two weeks, many people were off work so homebrew scenes, like those for the Vita and Switch, prospered due to more free time on developers’ hands. As a result, the Switch is seeing more progress on the N64 Dyanrec being ported to it, got audio in In-Home-Switching (PC screen streaming solution) and saw an NXShell update.
N64 Dynarec seeing great progress on the Switch
If you’re into emulation, you’ve probably come across the term dynarec a few times but why is it so important? Dyanrec (Dynamic Recompiler) is a very important part in making emulators for newer consoles run at good speeds, especially on slower hardware.
This is because Dynarecs are much faster than Interpreters since they look at chunks of code, do bulk analysis and decode whole blocks of instructions which they then translates to code that could be used by the host CPU. After doing this, this decoded code is stored in a code cache so that the same code doesn’t need to be translated again!
On the other hand, Interpreters decode one instruction at a time and don’t make use of code caches thus being much slower. This leads to unplayable framerates on systems that aren’t powerful enough but through the aforementioned dynarec, performance can be greatly improved.
Moving to the Switch-side of things, the dynarec being for the Switch is a port of RetroArch’s N64 dynarec for ARM64 devices. This dynarec, which was so important that a bounty was set up for it, was mostly worked on by Gillou and was recently brought over to Android and *nix RetroArch nightlies. Now, the N64 port is seeing some good progress and this could be checked out by viewing this Reddit thread which also has a video associated with it. Currently, it’s not available for download but m4wx, who’s contributing to the Switch port of RetroArch, has stated that a beta may be available around the time when RetroArch 1.7.6 is released.
If you still want to try new features, you can grab the latest nightlies as they contain some cool stuff like 1080p support in docked mode which is not available in stable builds of RetroArch!
In-Home-Switching gets audio support
In-Home-Switching is a PC screen streaming solution, similar to Moonlight, for the Nintendo Switch that works well on all graphics cards provided you have a decent CPU and a good local internet connection.
Without a doubt, it achieved a feat by providing PC screen streaming at good framerates (40-60 FPS) but it had one missing feature and that was audio support. Now, jakibaki and D-VAmpire have worked hard and released version 0.2 with the following updates:
- Experimental Audio Support
- The Switch’s IP is now shown in the app
- Overclocking profiles
- Configuration files on the PC side
- Performance improvements
To grab this updated version, head over to this link for the NRO file to install on your Switch and the updated PC client application. Any issues should be reported in the Issues Tab of the GitHub link provided in-line.
NX-Shell 1.1 released
Similar to the PSVita, the Switch has its own go-to *Shell file manager and it is called NX-Shell. Unlike VitaShell, NX-Shell is developed and maintained by Joel16 rather than TheFlow and it has a CyanogenMod-esque theme to it.
Thankfully, Joel16 is regularly updating and working on NX-Shell and he’s released version 1.1 with some exciting features namely:
- Built-in FTP support
- Now, you can copy files to your Switch wirelessly without switching applications!
- Animated GIF support so now, you can view your favourite memes on the go!
- Support for extracting RAR files
- Images can now be rotated and flipped
- Moving around images after zooming into them is now possible
- Numerous bug and cosmetic fixes
If you want the latest and greatest NX-Shell, follow this link to get the NRO file. There’s also Joel16’s PayPal link if you want to buy him some well-deserved coffee/beer!
It’s quite astonishing to think about how much more useful your Switch could be made with homebrew but unfortunately, Nintendo is into blocking hacked Switch consoles from using its online services so thread with caution.
Perhaps, sometime in the future, highly reliable methods for avoiding bans will be made available but for now, your best bet is to stay off WiFi and enjoy homebrew under Nintendo’s nose!