OpenMSX slow and low fps on Raspberry Pi 4

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Door Randam Hajile

Expert (80)

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28-05-2020, 07:28

Has anyone tried running openMSX on the Pi 4 yet?

I had a nice setup on the Pi 3, but some games still have lag so I would expect the Raspberry Pi 4 to solve this, since it is much more powerful. I installed the most recent Raspbian Buster with Retropie. All seemed well. But when I run openMSX it's terribly slow. I don't get more than 30 FPS and usually it's less, rendering games like Aleste almost unplayable.

Checking the internet for solutions I tried some things like using a different graphics driver and scaler, allocating more video memory etc. But in the end it didn't matter. Other emulators run fine so it must be openMSX specific.

I really hope it can be solved. I'm looking forward to turn my Pi 4 in a full fledged MSX2!

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Van Manuel

Ascended (16639)

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28-05-2020, 07:38

Which version of openMSX is installed in both cases?
Which renderer is used?

Van Daemos

Paragon (1718)

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28-05-2020, 09:08

It seems that this Is indeed arm openmsx specific. Currently running on openmsx 0.14 with opengl disabled and it runs simply bliss, perfect speed no comments. With openMSX 0.15.0-827-g9f574d0fb with exactly the same config things go less well. Slow speed and strange stuckups.

Van Manuel

Ascended (16639)

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28-05-2020, 12:36

Gl disabled as well?

Van Randam Hajile

Expert (80)

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28-05-2020, 13:48

I'm running openmsx 0.15.
Will try the downgrade.

Where do I disable Gl, just to be sure?

Van Manuel

Ascended (16639)

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28-05-2020, 20:25

Do you use the SDLGL-PP renderer or the SDL renderer. That's the question. And if you use one, try the other and see if it makes a difference.

Van FiXato

Scribe (1600)

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28-05-2020, 20:36

Randam Hajile wrote:

I'm running openmsx 0.15.
Will try the downgrade.

Where do I disable Gl, just to be sure?

  • Start openMSX
  • Open the console: F10 (or CMD+L on macOS)
  • set renderer SDL or set renderer SDLGL-PP

(or use tab-completion to see which options are available on your system and try them all out.)

Van Randam Hajile

Expert (80)

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28-05-2020, 20:41

I noticed already in several other topics that the level of Linux specific expertise expected is quite high Tongue. I'm not familiar with what a "renderer" is actually, where I have to set it or unset it?

What I did manage to do is downgrade to 0.14. I can confirm that it fixes the performance issue. Thanks Daemos for that suggestion!

Installing it was kind of a hassle, as I tried to compile it myself but it kept complaining about the openGL libraries that were missing, I couldn't get those installed too (complains about broken dependencies/packages, on a clean Raspbian Buster install). In the end I opted to download the binaries from https://misapuntesde.com/post.php?id=382 and that worked.

Of course I would like to go with 0.15 eventually, because that works also on the Pi3 and I want the latest and greatest... so still curious what to do to get that to run smoothly.

Van Manuel

Ascended (16639)

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28-05-2020, 20:49

See FiXato's post. It's not related to Linux... but I think I understand what you mean.

The renderer selection is also in the OSD menu, under the Video settings.

Van Vampier

Prophet (2351)

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28-05-2020, 22:26

Randam do me a favor and check this distro out - SDL support on the Pi4 is iffy at best. openMSX runs fine on the Pi4 with a lot of coaching for the drivers.

https://www.sedai.it/v1/page/getsedai

Van Randam Hajile

Expert (80)

afbeelding van Randam Hajile

28-05-2020, 23:16

Thanks for all the help, appreciate it. It seems I have the SDL renderer active, I can't find it in the OSD menu but "set renderer" doesn't work for SDLGL-PP so it's probably a compiled version without OpenGL.

I found out that the biggest slowdown factor is the 'Scale' setting. I had this on 3, which is the same as on my Pi3. But this slows everything down (even the music has hick-ups). When I keep this on 1, openMSX runs at a good speed.

Still I would expect that openMSX can be a lot faster (also when pressing F9 it doesn't really help that much). The Pi4 has considerably more power than its predecessor and it's not available for some reason.

Maybe I'll try the sedai distro. Is that version already 'coached' so that it runs smootly with openMSX? Or is a lot of manual tinkering still needed?

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