Dingoo A330 (Dt-A330) Video Review


Still Fresh
May 2, 2011
After following the homebrew handheld scene for quite some time, I took the plunge and finally ordered a Dingoo A330. There are plenty of cheaper machines that barely handle emulation of some hacked NES games alongside some iffy MP3/PMP functions, but as many know there are also some slightly pricier, but more serious, alternatives out there that have proved to be more viable development platforms for the homebrew community. The original Dingoo A320 was one of these and although significantly less powerful than the competitors like the GP2X Wiz, Caanoo, or the rare troubled Pandora, it came in at around half the price of the cheapest alternative.

The reason these type of consoles first caught my attention is not only are they an excellent mobile solution for retro-gamers, they are also now coming in at a price that makes them viable hacking platforms for compact arcade projects (a scene I am heavily involved in). I could go into detail about the history of the console and all the additional features etc., but as my A330 was bought to test it as a viable mini-arcade project core, I've done a video review that mainly details the emulator performance and user-friendliness as these are the most important points to consider if it is to be a viable 'brain' for such a project.

It's taken a while to get a review done but as there is little in the way of A330 support or advice (I certainly struggled when first looking at this platform as much of the development and support is based on the A320), I felt it was wise to 'break in' the controls first and get chance to test the various native and Dingux software solutions available before giving my review. It's not as lengthy as others but I've chosen to focus on the real aspect of the actual gaming, which is cutting to the chase for avid gamers like me rather than the gadget freaks or development-minded users.

The audio is a bit quiet so I've added notes where necessary, but if you've also been contemplating one of these devices for a compact arcade build or simply for a mobile retro gaming fix, then please take the time to view it below:


Obviously I've got no basis for comparison with the A320, but I can say that aside from a minor SD card compatibility issue as my first stumbling block, 95% of the stuff available for the A320 works on the A330 (sometimes better from what I've read up on), and while many like to bring up the Dingoo branching out of the company and argue over supposed software rights etc., as a user I'm happy that buying and usng the A330 is not he minefield of hit-and-miss luck that buying an A320 is with the various versions and re-branded consoles out there.

Overall, I've found the Dingoo A330 to be a very competent gaming platform with plenty of community support and coming in at the right price. Many will already be getting their mobile gaming fix by way of their iphone, PSP, Android device or some other means by now, but the only direct comparable competitor is the PSP. PSP's may now be cheap second-hand but arcade emulation is not great on them and the software installation is better suited to mobile use. As mentioned there are better devices out there but cost will always be a factor and at over £100 for the competition, the Dingoo is certainly the best value and close at least to the power of the Wiz. I've yet to take the console apart to see what would be possible in terms of joypad hacking, but at least with native TV-out and a supplied RCA cable, connectivity would be easier and certainly be more compact than using a small profile PC like a thin client or Pico ITX motherboard, which would be costlier and require more 'add-ons' to work as well.

I'd recommend anyone considering a compact project give these a try, or indeed their A320 predecessor (if you can find them as they're now out of production). I am currently working on a couple of tiny arcade builds and with the wireless joypad addition for this console, it may even be possible to keep the system fully intact so it can be installed for static use and still completely removed to take away and play on the go!

Any thoughts/suggestions welcome.