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Bizhawk / Display Config

The BizHawk Display Configuration is not as powerful yet as some other multi-system emulators, but it's pretty complicated anyway. In a lot of ways, it isn't finished yet.

Display Process, Scaling & Filtering

The main display process works generally as follows:

The Aspect Ratio options also affect the View > Window Size (1x, 2x, etc.) sizes selected by the emulator frontend. The chosen sizes will be those that result in the requested PAR settings being met, without requiring letterboxing. It's worth noting that given this complex definition for 1x, 2x, etc., the results won't necessarily be literal 2x or 3x scales. Ideally they'll be the next-higher size which meets the criteria. This logic isn't completely working right now, so what it actually does is kind of confusing. Moreover, sometimes nothing will happen when you increase the window zoom level because it would be too big for the monitor it's on. It may not always seem that way, but it's true. It's easy to be off by like 10 pixels. You could try shrinking the window chrome.

The "User" shader must be a retroarch-style .CGP, accompanied by .cg files[1]. These obviously won't work GDI+ display method. In D3D display method, some shaders can take 1-2 seconds to compile, due to MS's parts going slow. This will cause pauses when selecting that filter and subsequently when the emulator is booted.

A lot of these options are complicatedly related to how the PSX core displays its output, so you may want to read more there.

Display Methods

These are described pretty well in the dialog. When changing the selection, the emulator needs restarting. When you try to start the emulator in OpenGL mode, it may silently fail and revert to GDI+. Currently the Direct3d9 display method doesn't do this, but it will probably change.

One noteworthy point: The OpenGL display method was originally added in anticipation of accelerating GL-accelerated cores by avoiding texture fetching. However, this hasn't been implemented yet. Mupen is too badly structured internally to facilitate this (isn't inherently using render-to-texture but archaic GL backbuffers). Yabause could handle it, but this work isn't being done yet. It will be useful for modern 3d consoles PCSX2, dolphin) capable of HD rendering. It won't be useful for desmume though, since it has software processing for the 2D graphics and HD 2d+3d composition. It will probably be nice for libretro cores though.


The options here are advanced and otherwise described well in the dialog. See more at Speed & Throttling


Here we have some options largely relating to the window chrome that's visible in Windowed and Fullscreen mode. It's pretty self-explanatory.

Auto-Hide mouse cursor causes the mouse cursor to disappear after 2 seconds of disuse (Fullscreen mode only).

Emuhawk.exe can also be launched with --chromeless which will cause the chrome-related options to be _ignored_ and set to pretty much all disabled.

The default double-click to toggle fullscreen behaviour can be disabled here. Ordinarily double-clicking will toggle fullscreen, unless you're playing a zapper game and have bound zapping to the left mouse button. Even in that case, holding shift will force double-click to toggle. By disabling this option, every game will be treated as a zapper game: doubleclick won't toggle fullscreen, but holding shift will allow it to happen.

Screen Shots

Future Work

I have a lot of cool stuff planned for this. Here's some of the ideas:


Apologies for confusing Pixel Aspect Ratio and Display Aspect Ratio here. This topic isn't my strong suit, and it confuses me. The wording in the docs and dialog box need revising. Additionally the emulator mixes up the words `client` and `native`. `Native` in particular is a really bad word, but it's kind of stuck.

[1] Some of the retroarch features are supported yet: temporal blending, lookup tables (needed by HQ2X etc.). The latter will be supported in the near term. Other retroarch shaders may suffer from some compatibility problems. The aim is total compatibility, but it's kind of hard.

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Bizhawk/DisplayConfig last edited by zeromus on 2016-03-24 01:29:27
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