From GameBrew

Last Updated2009/04/20

A 48K Spectrum emulator port that was made for Linux/Windows, adapted to work on Nintendo DS.

It was written with the following tools: devkitARM release 20, PAlib070717, Linker R4 DS.


  • Full emulation of the 48K ZX Spectrum.
  • Support of snapshots files on SNA format.
  • Sound management.
  • Virtual keyboard managed with a Stylus.
  • SNA files browsing.
  • Joystick interfaces: Sinclair 1&2, Cursor and Kempston.
  • Automatic games set-up.
  • 50 FPS.
  • Possible loading of another ROM.


Copy the bin/SpectrumDS.nds file to the root of your memory card.

Then create a /sna/ directory at the same place as the binary and place the snapshot files in SNA format there.

To facilitate the selection of SNAs in the emulator, you can place a screenshot of the game in this directory. This file must be in 128X96 pixels GIF format and have the same name as the sna file.

Example: ChuckEgg.sna and ChuckEgg.gif

User guide


Top screen:

  • The top screen represents the Spectrum screen.

Bottom screen:

  • In Spectrum mode, the bottom screen simulates the spectrum keyboard.
  • You will hear a clicking sound when you press a key.
  • Pressing the Start key allows you to access the SNA file loading and configuration panel.
  • To start a game, click on the image in the center.


Config file:

  • It is possible to define a configuration file.
  • This file is used to define the interface to use joystick and define a sequence of keys to launch the snapshot.
  • The spectrum.cfg file must be placed in the /sna/ directory.


  • SNA - Name of snapshot file. Example: ChuckEgg.sna
  • JOYSTICK - Can take one of the following values. KEMPSTON, CURSOR, SINCLAIR_1 or SINCLAIR_2.
  • SEQUENCE- #<value> <key>
    • <value>: Half-seconds to wait for each value. Example: #4 corresponds to a wait of 2 seconds.
    • <key>: Name of the simulated key.

Configuration example:

BountyBo.sna KEMPSTON #1 R #1 7 #1 6 #1 5 #1 8 #1 0
ChuckEgg.sna CURSOR #1 R #1 7 #1 6 #1 5 #1 8 #1 0 #1 S #6 1
ProjectF.sna CURSOR #8 3 #2 4
RollerCo.sna KEMPSTON
TheAlche.sna KEMPSTON
TheCoven.sna SINCLAIR_2
WizardsL.sna KEMPSTON


  • When launching the emulator for the first time, rather than selecting a snapshot, click on the icon at the top left. You will launch the Spectrum in basic interpreter mode.
  • You can activate/deactivate the automatic configuration by clicking on the Gear icon.
  • You can activate/deactivate the sound by clicking on the Musical Note icon.
  • Frames per second (FPS) can be displayed if you press the R button.


Select - Change the joystick emulation interface

Start - Access the selection panel SNA files and settings

X - Shoot, Action

D-Pad - Movement

External links