My Opinion Of The N-gage Qd


Still Fresh
May 23, 2004
Matthews, NC USA
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As many of you here own multiple handhelds (or have interest in them), I decided I would post in regards to my latest acquisition, a Nokia N-GAGE QD. I have had the device for approximately a month now and am extremely pleased so far.

When it comes to the N-GAGE in general (original or QD), people tend to either gravitate toward the "love it" or "hate it" point of view. I would have to say I fit into the "love it" category. This is not to say that I think my QD is perfect, but overall it meets or exceeds my expectations and needs.

As I required a new phone, I looked at variety of models, but the N-GAGE caught my eye due to my enjoyment of gaming. I considered both the N-GAGE and the N-GAGE QD, but opted to go with the QD as it had Bluetooth and a more ergonomic design. In addition, I was able to get a deal that resulted in me obtaining the phone for free (after rebates).

I was immediately impressed with the device. It is very functional as a phone, as well as a gaming device. There a quite a few commercial games available, and the emulators work quite well. In addition, the size and weight are within reason.

I find the e-mail and Internet capabilities extremely useful, even though the built-in browser is not very impressive. Nevertheless, most of the QD's shortcomings can be overcome with 3rd party software (Opera browser, etc). In addition, the built-in organizer applications really come in handy, though certainly not up to par with a true PDA.

The reality of the matter is that the N-GAGE QD is a multi-purpose device that is a jack of all trades, but a master of none. Still, its capabilities both as a phone and a gaming device are very impressive, just don't expect perfection in either area.

For me, one of the greatest aspects of owning the QD is that it is a phone. Though I may not always carry my GP32, Zodiac, or GBA with me, the odds are that I do have my phone. This makes for great convenience.

Nevertheless, if you are looking for the ultimate gaming device, the N-GAGE QD is probably not for you. If you are looking for a hybrid phone, then an N-GAGE or N-GAGE QD might just be what you are looking for.

As I own several handhelds, let me provide a short synopsis of my opinion regarding each of them.
GBA SP - Nice compact design with a plethora of commercial games available. Though various expansion items exist for it (TV tuner, etc), its primary function is gaming and that is where its strength shows.

Pros: Affordable device, small, many games available.

Cons: Games add up quickly if you do not have a flash cart, screen is front lit. Device is not overwhelmingly versatile.
GP32 BLU - Large screen with excellent graphics and sound. Very versatile gaming device if you are interested in retro gaming/emulation. Very few commercial titles even exist, but PD software is plentiful and the emulators are incredible from a handheld perspective. Also is suitable as an MP3 player and for watching some movie media.

Pros: Great screen & sound, semi-versatile, perfect handheld for those enjoying retro games and homebrew.

Cons: Not many commercial games available, pretty much limited to a gaming and multimedia device, SMC media is limited to 128 Meg.
Zodiac 2 - Simply put, a PDA for gamers. Great Palm PDA capabilities with many applications available. From a gaming perspective, there are some commercial titles available, but they are not overwhelmingly plentiful. In the emulation arena, the Zodiac fares quite well, though overall not up to par with the GP32. The Zodiac has excellent multimedia capabilities both from a sound and graphical perspective. Its capacity to use SD cards allows plentiful storage.

Pros: Perfect PDA for gamers. Versatile PDA, multimedia device, and gaming handheld, storage is plentiful, great graphics and sound.

Cons: Commercial games are not overwhelmingly popular, emulation is not quite up to par with the GP32, device is rather costly, battery cannot be replaced easily by owner.
N-GAGE QD - A great phone for gamers. Good phone capabilities, as well as organizer functionality. There are quite a few commercial games for the N-GAGE, and emulation works relatively well. Bluetooth capability is the icing on the cake. Though you can utilize a 2GB MMC, internal storage is limited (4 Meg). The screen is relatively small and limited to 4096 colors. The biggest disappointment is that sounds is limited to Mono. Though 3rd party MP3 players can be obtained, the sound is not as good as its predecessor, the original N-GAGE.

Pros: A phone, organizer, and gaming handheld all in one! Quite a few commercial games available, emulation is reasonably good.

Cons: A jack of all trades, a master of none, lack of USB interface, mono sound only, small screen.

Anyway, that is my quick synopsis of the handhelds I own. Mind you, these are my opinions, but hopefully many of you will find some useful information therein.
i just got a QD too about 2 weeks ago, i got Ashen, Colin Mcrae racing, and Tony hawk and they are all really good games. I was very impressed with the N-gage and i was one of the people bashing it when it came out but now that I actually own it, i'm very happy.
My cell phone company is Verizon, so no N-Gage for me. :( If I did use Cingular or whoever carries it, I would definitely get one just because it is nice if you take if for what it is.. a cell phone that plays games.
Jizz? :blink:

Do I know what hat means, or have I been watching too much porn? :unsure:

Nah, one can never watch too much. ;)

Say, does ot emulate SNES, and how well? Any advantages/shortcoming compared to the GP emulators?
Say, does ot emulate SNES, and how well? Any advantages/shortcoming compared to the GP emulators?
No advantages whatsoever. Vertical orientation and limited screen resolution makes all the emus really oddly proportioned (as in very wrongly), and the processor is, to my knowledge, a good bit slower than the GP32's.

Really NOT an emu system, but a pretty cool gaming phone.
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the processor is actually faster than a GP32 that is not overclocked. If i'm not mistaken, GP32 processor is 66mhz when not overclocked whatsoever. Also, an Unlocked N-Gage will work with any carrier that uses the GSM network.
snes, genesis, gbc and nes all run quite well on the n-gage, you'd be suprised. i had a qd for about 6 months and i was really impressed. i still play n-gage monkey ball on my 7610.
the processor is actually faster than a GP32 that is not overclocked. If i'm not mistaken, GP32 processor is 66mhz when not overclocked whatsoever. Also, an Unlocked N-Gage will work with any carrier that uses the GSM network.
But who the heck wouldn't overclock their GP to at least 133mhz?
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The processor doesn't have a native speed. 133mhz is the speed it is checked for at Samsung quality control (and thus its "native" speed). If it doesn't meet 133mhz, it is binned elsewhere. 66mhz is the speed the firmware sets it at.
Indeed the N-GAGE qd has a small screen and the emulation is not up to par with the GP32. Nevertheless, the merit in it remains the fact is is a gaming phone and does have some nice commercial games. I certainly would not advocate it over some handhelds for the pure gamer, but if you are looking for a phone and are a gamer to boot, I feel it is a good choice.
I cannot say that I am a fanboy of any particular system, each has advantages and disadvantages. I have yet to find a handheld (or any gaming system) that is truly "perfect" in my eyes, especially when it comes to hybrid devices.

Nevetheless, I have been very pleased with the N-GAGE QD since I always need to have my phone with me. It really came in handy the other day when I had to wait an hour in the doctor's office.

As for my Zodiac, I usually bring it with me when I go to work for taking notes in meetings and keeping up with my schedule. Still, it is not a constant companion so to speak.

In regards to my beloved GP32, it is my gaming device of choice for when I am at home or on vacation. There have even been a few times I tossed it in my briefcase and played a few games on my lunch break. Indeed it is in a class of its own, as it is a very unique handheld.

Overall, I am partial to hybrid gaming devices. I only carry a briefcase to work with me, so it does not make sense for me to haul around handhelds unless they also serve some practical function.

I have actually had my eyes on the Gizmondo for a while, as I find it rather interesting. From what it says on the site, it will be available in the US in August. Still, I doubt I will purchase one. If it had phone capabilities, then I would consider it, but that lack of that particular feature simply makes it an overpriced toy (from my standpoint). Nevertheless, I still find it an interesting handheld.

As far as pure gaming handhelds are concerned, the PSP is on my "might buy one of those" list. Its large screen and general capabilities are very impressive. Nevertheless, I will probably wait until the emulation scene evolves a bit more, as well as the cost of the device going down a bit.