How To Speed Up Desmume?

Desmume is a popular emulator for the Nintendo DS. It’s been around for over 10 years and has had a lot of work put into it. But, if you’re finding that the emulator is slowing down your computer too much, there are some things you can do to speed up Desmume. 

The Nintendo DS is a popular handheld console with a massive library of games.  Desmume can slow your computer down with all that emulation work it has to do. This article shows you a few ways you can speed up Desmume and get back to your game faster!

How To Speed Up Desmume?

Can DeSmuME fast forward?

Yes, it can. The speed of the emulation on your computer can be recalculated with F4 and un-recalculated on F5 (or whatever you like). This is especially useful if your CPU is not too powerful compared to your emulator speed (a single tasker) as the computer does nothing while running; or if you just want to skip cutscenes.

You can also press END/PGUP to do the same thing by pressing during emulation. This emulates the R and L triggers on an original DS, but is not required for most games. You can also just press on the touch screen.

NOTE: This recalculates the emulation speed based on what was previously set by F4, not an actual time value. So if you want to double your current speed, for example, you’d need to first do some 20% fast forward, then hold down F4 until it’s close to what you want, and then F5 to force recalculation back to 100%.

How to Fix Desmume Lag?

Some users can have the emulator lag while playing certain games or when using specific features. This can be frustrating for users who want to get the most out of Desmume and enjoy their favorite games without interruption. The lag you are experiencing can be fixed with a few simple steps: 

Step 1: Verify you meet the minimum JVM Requirements

Step 2: Disable Advanced D3D Filters

Step 3: Verify your Graphics Settings are properly optimized with your computer specs

Step 4: Disable Advanced OpenGL Filters

Step 5: Verify your Speed Hacks are properly optimized for your specific computer specs

Step 6: Verify your Emulator is not Stuck on a certain FPS Limit

Step 7: Disable Dual SPU Sync

If you upgraded Desmume recently, you should likely experiment with the above to see if the issue has been fixed

A lot of Desmume lag is due to a lack of real-time priority on the main thread. This means during emulation, an app running in the background may steal CPU from DeSmuME and make it seem a little more broken than it really is. 

If you’re using Windows 7, try Task Manager to verify what your CPU is doing, and you might experiment with closing some unnecessary stuff from the “Processes” tab. Otherwise, try using a separate process killer app such as Autoruns to shut down other processes before opening DeSmuME. 

As a last resort, try enabling Priority boost in Task Manager by right-clicking Desmume.exe and going to “Set priority”. This might remove the need for a separate process killer.

How To Speed Up Desmume?

You can speed up desmume and get a better experience by following these steps:

Step 1: Enable “Patch DelayLoop SWI” if you have to use an external BIOS image.

Step 2: Press “A” on “Settings” and switch between OpenGL Renderer and Software Rasterizer. 

Step 3: Access the “Sound Settings” and check to use “Dual SPU.”

Step 4: Use the DeSmuME builds that are available on the DeSmuMe website.

Step 5: Enable frame skip by going to “Tools” and clicking on “Frameskipping.”

Step 6: If you are using a laptop or notebook computer, disable the power management. The CPU will automatically reduce the speed if you enable this feature.

Step 7: Close or disable other applications that are running at the same time as DeSmuME. This step reduces the load on your computer and speeds up the emulator.

Just enough computer power can make even a slow emulator run as fast as it should. If you happen to have the newest and greatest equipment, remember that there are other factors that you can tweak to make your emulator run even faster. Always experiment with different combinations of settings until you find the optimal balance between speed and quality for your machine.

This is just a simple tutorial on how to speed up your DeSmuME by tweaking the settings. This should help some of you, but there are still more things that can be done if you want to squeeze out some extra power from your computer. If you have any questions or suggestions, feel free to leave a comment below and I will do my best to help you!

This tutorial is intended for Desmume version 0.9.11 and newer since it has a lot of new settings to tweak in order to speed up the emulator.