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Thread: iEDGE

  1. #1

    Default iEDGE

    Special thanks to 4CoolDay.com for providing the review sample!



    - Introduction –


    The iEDGE is the DSi compatible cartridge put out by the EDGE team.* The original EDGE flash cart received a lot of praise from users and reviewers alike for the straight forward, easy to use approach of the cart.


    iEDGE box

    The iEDGE is the successor to the rather successful EDGE flash cart.


    Originally rumored to be a clone of the feature full CycloDS Evolution cart, the first owners of the EDGE soon realized that the EDGE, while similar to the CycloDS Evolution in design, lacked many of the features and also shaved off a good portion of the price tag.* It is still unclear, at least to my knowledge, whether there are direct ties between the EDGE team and Team Cyclops.* The cart could be a branch of development offering a cheaper solution, but on the other hand, may have simply been inspired by the CycloDS Evolution.




    The iEDGE generally retails for a little over $20.


    Despite paling in comparison to one of the richest carts in features, the EDGE managed to appeal to users because it was simple.* There was no hassle in setting it up or running it, errors and bugs were almost non-existent, while the cart was built like a tank, making it a good choice for younger children.




    The iEDGE should be the top choice for DS users that are children or are near children.


    - Design –


    The iEDGE comes in the same triangular box that the original EDGE came in, but now with a small sticker that states that it is “DSi compatible”.* It also has the same cloth elastic band holding it together.




    The design is pretty wacky and fun, as with their skin, the stickers, etc.


    It always struck me odd that the EDGE came in such a unique box.* A lot of people think it is a great design and absolutely unique, and I certainly agree that it stands out and looks pretty good, but for storage, a triangular box is not a great solution, not that it matters.




    I know I'm nitpicking when I say it doesn't stack up (literally), but it genuinely caused a rift in my box collection.


    When you slide the top piece of the box around, it unveils the white iEDGE cart in all its glory with the smoke black MicroSD reader.* The iEDGE currently comes only in white, however I have heard that black will eventually be available.




    The lid slides off and reveals the goodies. It's nice to see a MicroSD reader simply because more and more flash cart makers are opting to ditch the readers and save a couple cents here and there.


    The MicroSD reader is the same one we saw with the EDGE and many other carts on the market, and with that experience alone I can tell you that sometimes they work well, sometimes they die.* They aren’t too reliable, so if you have no other means of connecting a MicroSD memory card to the computer, I don’t suggest relying on this reader, instead go spend a few dollars on another one.* These ones will die suddenly, out of nowhere, with no warning, so be warned.


    The white iEDGE cart is as solid as ever.* When you press around it, there’s very little flex on the plastic.* It is far from your average flash cart, the iEDGE feels really solid, nothing cheap about it, and in fact I often said that the original EDGE was perhaps better made than original DS game cartridges.




    The iEDGE is no doubt the best built flash cart around.


    The iEDGE also has teeth on the contacts, these are little pieces of plastic that separates the different contacts from each other.* It doesn’t add anything to the cart or anything at all really, it is just nice to see the makers putting a little effort in the casing and even considering these minor things. The MicroSD slot on the cart is not spring loaded.* That is to say you have to pull it out with your fingernails or teeth or something.* The iEDGE’s slot is a little stiff, but not as bad as many other carts.* It does loosen over usage, but it isn’t so bad to begin with, so it is perfectly possible to pull it out without resorting to using pliers and tweezers and all the other utensils I’ve heard people use.




    The MicroSD slot loosens rather quickly, so it's not a big deal.


    All in all, the iEDGE is probably the best choice if you have a child that likes to throw these things around.* Some carts in the market are relatively fragile, but the iEDGE seems to be built to survive.


    - Software –




    This video shows you how to update the bootstrap for the iEDGE after you've purchased it or if Nintendo releases another update for the DSi.


    The iEDGE DS has been consistantly updating their flash cart.* It is clear that the updates aren’t even close to as frequent as competitors such as the AceKard 2i or the M3i Zero, however, they do keep up reasonably to the latest games.* You can expect updates to happen once every month or two, which keeps you in the loop.


    For the people that are constantly waiting to try out the latest games, this isn’t nearly fast enough, and unfortunately there are no alternative firmwares you can run to get this flash cart running new hit releases that aren’t supported yet.* This is probably one of the biggest issues I have with the cart.




    It isn't very often that you see a game that doesn't work with the iEDGE, but when you do, you'll have to be prepared to wait for it.


    The iEDGE also has a different set of files that needs updating, and these are the bootstrap updaters.* This appears for most DSi enabled flash carts, and basically allows the flash cart to run on a Nintendo DSi.* The iEDGE differs from its competitors in several different ways, first, the iEDGE is shipped completely blank (similar to the M3i Zero), so regardless of what DS console you have or what version, you will have to run the update the first time you run the cart.*




    Apparently it was supposed to say "Read Instructions" because it doesn't boot when you first receive it.


    It is a bit of a hassle, you have to download their Windows, Linux or Mac OSX program and run it on your computer with a clean and empty MicroSD card, and wait for it to complete the setup.* Soon after, you insert your iEDGE into your DS and it will begin blinking its LEDs to signal the update.* The method it updates is different from any other flash cart on the market, and can be said to be one of the less painful ways of updating a flash cart.* This method can be done regardless of what version your DSi is, so you don’t have to update the cart before you update your DSi, and it doesn’t require any USB peripherals that might be lost in a messy drawer.* It is extremely similar to the iPlayer in this respect, but it runs faster and smoother than the iPlayer.* It only takes a couple of seconds to update if you don’t count the need to prepare your MicroSD, and the computer software is extremely easy to use as well.* The iEDGE once again stands out as a cart that just about anyone can use and take full advantage of.




    It's unfortunate, but after the update you do lose the awesome iEDGE icon and instead get a Sudoku icon.


    - Use –


     

    This is the video review from DSDatabase, and it also quickly goes through the usage of the iEDGE in a video format.


    The iEDGE’s menu is very much similar to the CycloDS Evolution menu.* And for those of you familiar with the original EDGE and its menu, it is identical.


    After you select the iEDGE, the word booting appears and it lasts for no more than 3 seconds.* The boot is faster than most carts, but certainly more noticeable because of the white screen.* Most flash carts either have a beautiful splash screen or perhaps show certain elements of their menu instead.* To be honest, when I first got the iEDGE I actually thought it took longer to load than my AceKard 2i, however, the stop watch begs the differ.




    There's nothing beautiful about a blank boot screen, but I suppose you can argue that it cuts down on load time by a fraction of a second.


    As the menu finally shows up, you’ll see three icons on the bottom screen and a single EDGE splash screen on the top.* The picture on the top screen is fixed throughout the menu, and isn’t used at all.* We’ve seen a few other carts that made use of this real estate; the M3 Sakura uses both screens for browsing, displaying more than twice the amount of files the iEDGE does at any one point while the EZ Flash Vi allows users a lot more flexibility by displaying the list on top and a whole set of controls on the bottom.




    The splash screen is a beautiful play with colors. It's pretty cool to stare at.


    The three icons that begins the iEDGE experience are similar to the ones found in the ever popular R4 or the CycloDS Evolution.* It was a brilliant idea ages ago with horridly slow unorganized menus circulating around, but it is about time to move on from this design.* I don’t think this is a particularly bad design, you have games for one icon, MoonShell for the center icon and the options for the last icon, but it’s obvious that one of the menus will be used significantly more than the others.* We’re seeing carts moving towards simply booting up at the list of games, we don’t need to be able to access language options every time we boot.* Again I’m looking at the M3 Sakura which has its own multimedia player built in that removes the need for the MoonShell icon or the EZ Flash Vi which has the options in a tiny corner with the games list in the area that the iEDGE conveniently left blank.* To be fair, the iEDGE’s firmware is simple and very organized, and moving in between the various menus are painless and able to be done in split seconds.* I am hoping one of these days to set the iEDGE to display a list of games by default instead of the three icons, but it isn’t a gigantic issue.




    It was revolutionary with the R4, but it's starting to get old. We want a new slicker menu!


    Now from the menu with the three icons, you can navigate to a media player (the center icon) called MoonShell and basically this is a homebrew application.* Some people have been able to rig it to boot a game of your choice, so you can set your favorite game.* The icon to the left of Media is the options.* The iEDGE has very few options, and while this might seem like a bad thing, it really isn’t.* The iEDGE offers all the features a casual player really needs, the ability to boot games, to change how the cart looks, and minor cheating functions.* It is rare to see a casual user to stride beyond these domains.* The iEDGE’s small list of features is a welcome change to the usually highly intimidating lists offered up by competitors that offer options that I believe are simply there to confuse users.




    Keep in mind that you have to download MoonShell separately from their website. It is not part of their firmware.


    Within the list of options, you’ll find that you can boot slot 2 cartridges.* Not particularly useful (in fact, useless) for DSi users, but if you still have legacy flash carts from eons ago, this feature is available for use on a DS or DS Lite.




    Brightness is also useless on the DSi, but remember, this cart works on all models of the DSi (as of the date this was written).


    You can also change the skins, which brings me to another side point.* The iEDGE’s skinning capabilities aren’t even close to as thorough as the EZ Flash Vi or the AceKard, but as a result, a whole lot more skins are available.* The skinning engine for the iEDGE consists of 5 images, 2 of which are generally recycled by skinners (selection dots and scrollbar).* It is easy to skin, anyone can find 2 pictures on google and resize them.* Furthermore, the already extensive CycloDS Evolution skin library is fully compatible with the iEDGE without any changes at all.




    This was a skin designed for the CycloDS Evolution by Cless and it still works beautifully with the iEDGE.


    The other options offered in the settings are cheat codes (a global enable or disable), the LCD brightness (for DS Lite only, it doesn’t work on the DSi), language and rumble (for use with a slot 2 expansion).* These settings aren’t things that you’d really fiddle with often, which is why I’m not fond of the three icons.




    Straightforward options, there aren't any SD card speeds or settings for the settings menu or anything crazy like the other carts offer.


    The final menu is the one used for actually running games.* It is the first icon from the three icon menu labeled games.* The menu boots almost instantaneously if you have a small memory card or very few games, but even under the largest of lists, it loads fast.* I found that scrolling through games isn’t quite as fast as I’d like with the default display (4 games with big icons).* It isn’t lagging, it seems that the speed is set that way.* The scroll speed is ideal if you have a short list of games, but if you are like me and are running 8GB or 16GB MicroSDHC cards, the only way to go is to use the samll icons which displays 10 games at any one time.* You can change the display mode by clicking X, and you can switch through three styles, two of which are rather similar.




    The "Rom" display mode shows the internal names of 4 games at a time.


    The display mode with the small icons is called list, and it is signifcantly faster going up and down.* Again I’d like to stress that this isn’t lag or the fact that the cart is not fast enough, it is clear that the speed was set this way.* The old solution to slow scrolling was allowing for skipping down the list by going down several games at any point in time.* This is available on the iEDGE, however it requires separate clicks to navigate down rather than letting you hold down the button as it scrolls down 4 at a time (or 10 for list mode) like you would for the down button.**




    "List" mode shows 10 games at a time with their given file names.


    When you are hovering over the game you want to play, you click A or tap the game and it will start automatically.* If you happen to have cheats globally enabled and the particular game you have is included in your cheat database, it will as you if you’d like to enable them.* A no will bring you straight into the game, while yes would bring you to the last menu on the iEDGE which will allow you to choose which cheats you want to enable.




    The iEDGE uses their own cheats.dat format, but it is widely available and fairly easy to convert from other formats.


    - Functionality –


    The iEDGE functions well.* The commercial game support is currently perfect with the 1.8 update.* However, keep in mind that the updates for the iEDGE are not as frequent as I’d like, so the latest games with anti-piracy may take up to a month or two to be supported.* Although rare and far in between, it could be a real headache to wait an extra long time for the one game you’ve been looking forward to all year.




    There was recently a 1.8 update which rendered some of my earlier tests moot.


    In terms of running the games, the iEDGE handles pretty well.* There aren’t any need for user made patches, nor do you need to fiddle with save sizes or anything to that effect.* They either work or they don’t.* Lag isn’t an issue if you are running any memory card that isn’t from a discount bin, and even then, you should be good for most games.




    For this review, an 8GB Class 6 MicroSDHC was used, however light testing was done on a Japanese 2GB Kingston MicroSD which performed just as well.


    Moving on, homebrew support is great.* My homebrew tests aren’t quite as extensive as the commercial games, but for the most part, if your game is a well known production, it will run on the iEDGE.* The DLDI driver on the iEDGE means that all of the newer homebrew files should run perfectly on the iEDGE, however, there are always exceptions to this rule with problematic games and applications.* Again, if you plan to run a good, well known homebrew application, you should be in the clear.


    - Conclusion –


    The iEDGE is arguably the easiest flash cart to use on the market.* The success of the original EDGE came from the fact that the cart was hassle free, and it is fantastic to see that the team’s original philosophy carried onto the iEDGE.




    Pretty much anyone can figure out how to use the iEDGE to its full potential.


    The iEDGE is built solid.* There aren’t a whole lot of features for you to fiddle with, options are kept to a minimum and the interface is kept as simple as possible.* This translates to a cart where you simply can’t do anything wrong.* When using a cart with features such as deleting files, I’ve often seen people accidentally deleting their save files.* The iEDGE has nothing of that sort.




    It's not rocket science, you hover over a game and click A.


    On the other hand, the obvious downside is the fact that you don’t have as many features on the cart.* The iEDGE is truly a cart stripped down to the bare minimum requirements.




    The cheat engine is perhaps the only feature the iEDGE really offers to enhance gaming.


    One other baffling issue with the iEDGE is the fact that it ships out empty.* It isn’t the first cart to do so, but it means that all users much go through the task of updating the bootstrap on the iEDGE.* While not at all painful, it is odd to see that a cart that should be marketted as the easiest to use would force users to do an extra step for the initial setup.




    It is never nice to update the bootstrap of a cartridge regardless of how painless the iEDGE team made it.


    The end result of the iEDGE is a mirror product of their original EDGE flash cart.* The iEDGE didn’t bring anything new to the table except an updatable bootloader, which is a little dissappointing.* The EDGE was always seen as a contender against the low end flash carts such as the AceKard 2, and the iEDGE is still in direct comparison with the AceKard 2i.* It is a little pricier than the AceKard 2i and it doesn’t have nearly enough features to compete with the high end flash carts such as the M3i Zero.




    Since the last time I used an EDGE, there has literally been no changes except for game fixes. No features added, nothing to really to show for their years of work.


    To summarize, the iEDGE doesn’t do anything incredible.* The iEDGE is truly the most basic flash cart for people who want a no hassle flash cart that will work for years to come.* If you are looking for any extra features at all, or like to tinker with options, the iEDGE is not for you. *However if you have a child that frequently throws things around, or just want a flash cart that can play games well, then the iEDGE is a perfectly suitable candidate for your purchase.




    The iEDGE is the perfect flash cart if you want something with little or no hassle that just works. I'm looking at the common R4 user, children, etc.


    - Score -


    Design – 5/5

    Software – 5/5

    Use – 4/5

    Functionality – 18/20

    Tilt – 5/5



    Overall – 37/40


    Support DSDatabase by purchasing your iEDGE at 4CoolDay.com!


  2. #2

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    Excellent review once again Pharaoh Now I just need a Supercard DSTWO!

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by shadowhunter View Post
    Excellent review once again Pharaoh Now I just need a Supercard DSTWO!
    Ditto :P

    Also, the video review on the front page is really huge (at least, for me it is).

  4. #4

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    Love the review!

    Didn't like that most i carts are just the same but dsi capable. (applies to most dsi carts) *looks at the SCDS2 to change that*
    The forbidden art of passed down through many generations. BOXERS OFF! (MMBN5/RnR3 reference)
    Admin of the Miserable Club?

  5. #5

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    Sweet review Pharaohsvizier I agree Iedge is good, but does not have enuf features for the price. I agree with boxshot, all the "I" carts are the same as their original, but they are dsi compatible.

  6. #6

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    Does no one else have the large video on the front page thing that I have?

  7. #7

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    No? Can you screenshot me and PM it?

  8. #8

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    The forbidden art of passed down through many generations. BOXERS OFF! (MMBN5/RnR3 reference)
    Admin of the Miserable Club?

  9. #9
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    I see the video as well. Anyways nice video review and written review. I enjoyed reading this maybe I am going to get this flashcart in the future.

  10. #10

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    Alright it SHOULD be fixed.

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