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Powkiddy X18

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By RichH6109, Junior Member on 5th August 2019, 11:33 AM
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I thought I'd start this thread as the Powkiddy X16 thread has run to 11 pages and I can't find any info on this model other than some fluff pieces on YouTube. Does anyone else own one? Can anyone offer any advice on how to get this model halfway usable? I'm impressed with the hardware aspect, particularly for the £60 I spent at AliExpress, but the software/OS is either incompatible or totally crash happy with everything I'm using. I'm trying to use this primarily as an emulator so I can play retro-games on the go.

So far, I've removed most of the Chinese installed apps and I have figured out that I need to use Aptoide in place of Google Play services (no access) but 75% of the apps I've tried either do not start or "stop responding" shortly after boot. The locked down Android environment is particularly frustrating to use.

I've managed to get Mame4Droid working, ePSXe works great and Retroarch appears to work. Others I've tried have had poorer results: PPSSPP (crashes on game start), UAE4Droid (stops responding at boot) etc. I was hoping to use this to pass the time on an 11 hour flight next week but it looks like I'll be reverting to in-flight entertainment!
18th September 2019, 12:37 AM |#2  
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Booting into Test mode
Hi, for the PowKiddy X18, I did find a procedure for booting the device into low level test mode. Please be careful with these options though:

WARNING: This procedure is for experienced users only, and I will not be responsible for any damage to the hardware or software by using the below procedure.

With the help of Google Translate, it's possible to boot the X18 into system test mode. By holding the Vol+ and Power button together, wait until the system fires up and keep holding both buttons, until you immediately see the Chinese boot ROM test menu. You must let go of the power button literally after you see the bottom right Chinese characters otherwise the X18 powers off. As soon as the menu appears, the contents are obviously in Chinese:

Something along the lines of:
Auto Test, Manual Test and a few others. There is one option that you must avoid although I believe that the main ROM image is write protected anyway, and requires a debugging or programming board to be connected, but I refer to the Format eMMC option. Obviously this is used to completely format the main eMMC ROM for hard programming new Kernel and Linux images onto the board. Clearly if it was connected, you'd lose the main OS and it would become a brick.

Use the DPad up and down keys to navigate, and use the power button to select. The Vol+ button on some options, reverts back to the main menu.

There is also a Version Information option which basically gives you a breakdown of the main board chipset, kernel version and memory statistics for both internal and external SD.

To get back to normal, just hold the Power button until the device powers down.

3rd October 2019, 05:24 PM |#3  
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I'd love a fix for the button input issue - it's the only thing that stops this being a great budget retro gaming device.
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