mame 99 vs mame 140January 13, 2011
After all why use mame 99, mame 140 is newer so it must be superior right?
Well, not exactly…
While the drivers in mame 140 are usually superior (not always the case), the emulator itself and it’s functionality has gotten worse over the years:
Mame 99 has savestate support for the all games, the reason why mamedev removed it at version 100 is that since *every* part of many systems were not fully emulated or understood saving and loading could cause some unpredictable behavior, often leading to crashes or corrupt graphics depending on the previous state before the load. That being said, it still worked the vast majority of the time. So starting with version 100 a lot of games with *working* savestates had that functionally removed.
The second important reason would be the use of the old rendering engine, since mame 107, mame is using a new form of rendering engine that combines audio and video syncing and that in theory should work better, in practice though it causes all kinds of smoothness problems and audio artifacts, all of this while taking up more system resources, great mame builds such as advancemame (build focused on video accuracy) halted because of this new rendering engine.
Yet another reason for going back is the great mame plus! build used around that time, it has tons of functionality that are simply missing even in current custom mame builds (like the new mame plus!). Some of these features are : Custom buttons support, Autofire support (with saved settings for later play), integer scaling (or clean stretch), more filtering options.
So this leaves us with newer drivers in the current mame version, well this is where I come in. I am backporting quite a few of the important shmup related fixes between 99 and 141 back to mameplus! 99. Hopefully at some point there will be no question as to which base version is superior.