Alright, retro gamers, today we are taking a look at the Powkiddy RGB20S.
This handheld gaming device, with its peculiar appearance, is definitely not your everyday console look-alike. Imagine the love child of a futuristic mini-gadget and your beloved retro game console. Yep, that’s the RGB20S for you!
Now, don’t let its quirky design fool you; there’s more to this device than meets the eye. For something that fits snugly in your palm (well, almost), it packs a punch, albeit with a few quirks and hiccups.
And speaking of size – it’s like Goldilocks had a say in its dimensions – not too big, not too small, it’s just right for a mini-handheld! Though, word of caution: not everything might sit right with every player.
Okay, enough with the teaser. Let’s deep dive into this pocket rocket and see if it’s worth your hard-earned cash or just another item for your tech junk drawer. Shall we?
Powkiddy RGB20S Specs
|Material||Plastic + Electronic Components|
|Color||White, Yellow, Blue|
|System||Open Source System|
|Screen||3.5-inch IPS Full-fit|
|Resolution||640 x 480|
|Game Console||1 unit|
|Charging Cable||1 unit|
|User Manual||1 unit|
|Personalized Cartoon Sticker||1 unit|
Design and Layout
Let’s kick things off with the most noticeable feature of the RGB20S – its unique design.
Starting with its face, or should I say, actual face? With a trio of buttons – Start, Select, and the cheekily named ‘Function’ button (used for those emulator settings) – it genuinely looks like a cute little robotic face staring back at you. Is it winking or just waiting for you to dive into a game? You decide.
One can’t help but raise an eyebrow, or two, at the button placements. The D-pad and buttons stationed below the sticks? It’s an unorthodox choice. Some of you might be thinking, “Why, Powkiddy, why?” But, hey, some folks might just find it avant-garde. After all, art is subjective!
While we’re on the topic of positioning, right smack in the middle of the device is a grill. Nope, not for BBQs, but for the speaker. And believe me, this speaker does not shy away from delivering some crisp sound without getting muffled by those eager gamer hands.
And then, the cherry on top: the 3.5” IPS display. Framed by barely-there bezels, it gives the RGB20S a sleek, modern vibe. It’s like the smartphone of the handheld world. Plus, the display quality is genuinely something to rave about. Vibrant, sharp, and with a resolution that makes the 90s consoles green with envy.
Rounding off the design is the plethora of buttons, ports, and notches around the edges. You’ve got the familiar On/Off switch, not one but two USB-C ports (talk about living in 2023!), and even a second SD card slot for the ROM enthusiasts.
I must be noted, the build quality is not the highest quality – It does feel a little cheap in the hand, and that’s because it is a budget handheld so to be expected.
Device Features and External Layout
The RGB20S is a device that, beyond its distinctive design, offers a range of features tailored to enhance your retro gaming experience …
- Central Interface: The device prominently features three main buttons on the front: ‘Start’, ‘Select’, and the ‘Function’ button. These are not mere design elements but play a crucial role in providing seamless navigation, especially within emulator settings.
- Audio Capabilities: The central speaker grill is meticulously positioned to ensure optimal sound output. Designed to avoid being obstructed by a user’s grip, the audio remains clear and uninterrupted, offering an immersive auditory experience to complement the visual gameplay.
- Display Details: The RGB20S boasts a 3.5” IPS display with minimal bezels, presenting a modern and expansive viewing area. The resolution of 640×480 may seem standard, but it delivers high-quality visuals, ensuring games are rendered with brightness and clarity. The incorporation of OCA display technology further ensures minimal gaps, thus reducing the likelihood of dust accumulation.
- Peripheral Features: Along the edges, the device is equipped with essential controls and ports. This includes the On/Off button, two USB-C ports for versatile connectivity, a volume control button, and an additional SD card slot, offering users the flexibility to expand their ROM collection as needed.
- Ergonomic Shoulder Buttons: The RGB20S introduces wide shoulder buttons that span the width of the device. The differentiation in elevation between the L2/R2 and L1/R1 buttons has been engineered for ease of use, allowing for swift transitions during gameplay.
Performance and Gaming Experience
So how does it perform? Let’s analyze the performance and gaming experience …
- Chipset Configuration: The heart of the RGB20S is the RK3326 chip, which, despite its age, has demonstrated a persistent resilience. While the inclusion of this chipset device might raise eyebrows, its performance remains commendable. It competently powers the RGB20S, yielding a gameplay experience that is both smooth and engaging.
- Pre-installed Software: The device stands out due to its pre-loaded Emulation Station, a favorite among retro gaming enthusiasts. This user-friendly operating system facilitates customization, ensuring that gamers can set up their environment as per their preferences. The ease of use extends to the ROMs, with the device allowing for ‘switch on and play’, exemplifying hassle-free gaming.
- Gaming Capabilities: The RGB20S shines when running platforms up to PS1. Games from this era are rendered with stunning visuals, crystal-clear audio, and smooth animations. The 4:3 display ratio is perfect for retro games, bringing nostalgia alive with full-screen gaming. From classics like Game Boy and Game Gear titles to the iconic PS1 games, the RGB20S ensures each game is a treat to play. However, it’s important to note its limitations. Dreamcast games tend to challenge the device, often leading to crashes and a less-than-satisfactory experience. While it handles most of the PS1 and N64 titles efficiently, players looking for a seamless Dreamcast experience might need to look elsewhere.
- Control and Customizability: Out of the box, the RGB20S impresses with well-mapped controls. Though a few tweaks might be necessary for certain emulators, the adjustments are minor. Once optimized, the handheld offers a responsive and intuitive gaming experience.
The RGB20S offers a rich and immersive gaming experience, especially for retro game enthusiasts. While it may have its limitations with more modern platforms, its strengths in delivering nostalgic gaming moments are undeniable.
In the ever-evolving realm of handheld gaming, the Powkiddy RGB20S offers a captivating blend of nostalgia and modernity. At first glance, its unique design might be polarizing, but underneath lies a device that packs both power and promise.
Its strengths are evident. The RGB20S boasts a vibrant screen that brings games to life, a sound system that delivers clear audio, and an intuitive control layout. Its performance in handling classic games is particularly praiseworthy, offering hours of immersive gameplay.
The device’s compatibility with the Emulation Station, combined with the convenience of ‘switch on and play’, underscores its commitment to user-centric design.
However, no device is without its shortcomings. The choice to continue with the aging RK3326 chipset is perplexing. While it still manages to hold its own, it’s clear that to truly stand out in future iterations, Powkiddy might need to consider upgrading their hardware selections.
For those who are keen on revisiting the classics – from Game Boy to PS1 titles – the RGB20S is a delightful companion. But for gaming aficionados seeking cutting-edge performance or seamless Dreamcast experiences, there might be other options worth exploring.
Wrapping up, the Powkiddy RGB20S is a testament to the timeless allure of retro gaming. It’s a device that, despite its limitations, delivers on its promise of portable retro gaming at a reasonable price point.
Pros & Cons
|Vibrant and impressive 3.5” IPS OCA Display.||Utilizes the aging RK3326 chipset|
|Sound system that delivers clear audio.||Design and button layout might be polarizing for some users.|
|Intuitive Emulation Station pre-installed for easy gaming.||Dreamcast games tend to crash and aren’t enjoyable.|
|Device comes with ‘switch on and play’ convenience.||Limited chipset performance for newer game platforms.|
|Good performance for retro games up to PS1.||Build quality could be better|
|Well-mapped controls out of the box.|
The Powkiddy RGB20S is a testament to the timeless allure of retro gaming. It's a device that, despite its limitations, delivers on its promise of portable retro gaming at a reasonable price point.