What are Nintendo DS / DSi Cards?

What do Nintendo DS / DSi Cards Do?

A Nintendo DS (also refers to Nintendo DSi) card is a cartridge that is the same size and shape of a regular Nintendo DS game. It usually has a slot in the back to accommodate a Micro-SD card, on which you can put files and applications from your computer. These can transform your Nintendo DS console into not just a games player, but an MP3 player, video/movie viewer, and a lot more. There are programs out there that let you view Office applications, paint elaborate pictures, and with the DSi (using the console microphone) even use VoIP to make internet calls! Many of these software are called ‘homebrew’ as they were developed by regular DS gamers for the public.

Examples of Nintendo DS and DSi Cards

A few of the more famous Nintendo DS cards are shown below.

From left to right: The original R4 Revolution (also known as the R4v2), the M3 DS Real cartridge, the EDGE DS, the R4 SDHC card, the N5, card and the DSTT card.

Some of the more well known DSi compatible cards (only released after Nintendo released the DSi console, naturally) are shown below.

From left to right: The R4i SDHC card (or commonly known as simply the R4i card), the Acekard 2i, EZFlash Vi cartridge, M3i Zero, and iEDGE card.

Technical Features of DS and DSi Cards

Nintendo DS and DSi cartridges such as the R4DS are known as ‘Slot 1′ devices because they plug into the top slot of the Nintendo DS / DSi. Regular Nintendo DS and DS Lite consoles have a ‘Slot 2′ for Gameboy Advance games in the bottom of the console.

Early generation cards such as the original R4 Revolution accepted Micro-SD TransFlash cards up to a maximum of 2GB. Subsequent cards including the R4 SDHC, M3 DS Real, DSTT and all Nintendo DSi cards including the R4i, are capable of accepting up to 32GB of memory in the Micro-SDHC format, although most people use 4 or 8GB Micro-SDHC cards.

The Micro-SD card is typically inserted in the back of the card as shown in the image below.

Most of the time, the Micro-SD slot is on the top of the card as pictured above. However, occasionally the slot is on the side of the card. Both positions are normal.

Using Software on Your DS / DSi Card

Like a computer, your DS card won’t run if you simply place files on it and hope for it to work – it requires the software to recognise the files you put on it! The basic software for each card is available from the manufacturer’s website (and some from this site too – go to the Software Downloads page or each individual card page on the sidebar) and you need to place it on the root directory of your Micro-SD card.

For more details and a step by step guide, see our DS Card Setup Guide located in the Support/Help menu on the top of this page. :-)

Fake and Clone DS / DSi Cards

There exist a lot of fake and clone cards on the market, although more often than not it’s incredibly difficult to tell them apart – for more information on this, visit our Fake/Clone Cards guide in the Support/Help menu.

Buy Genuine Cards

Don’t end up with a fake card – buy from reputable stores that you trust to stock genuine cards only. NintendoDSCards.com has a list of trusted retailers on its Where to Buy page. We have bought several cards from every retailer on our list (and are always looking for more stores to add!) and can confirm their authenticity as well as good after-sales support.

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