Is there a ps2 emulator which will run on the Rasberry Pi 2 (Model B)?

See the requirements for pcx2 (these don't mention ARM, I suspect this means it's not compiled on ARM, is there an ARM emulator out there?) and a thread - will PCX2 run fast on my computer...

I thought I would ask this question since I can't find the answer online, I suspect however that the answer is "No", but I don't know how to square performance of intel/amd/graphics against RPi2. I strongly suspect it won't even run on ARM...

If not, is it theoretically/reasonably possible we could see a working ps2 emulator on RPi2?

This is related to the question about ps one emulation, which is possible even on RPi1 (!).


4 Answers 4


Emulation mostly goes like this: The hardware has to be atleast ten times better Specs: MIPS-based "R5900" clocked at 294.912 MHz (299 MHz on newer versions) System memory: 32 MB Direct Rambus or RDRAM Memory bus Bandwidth: 3.2 gigabytes per second Graphics processing unit: "Graphics Synthesizer"(GS) clocked at 147.456 MHz (4mb)

versus this the RPi2 has a 900mhz quad core ARM cpu, speaking of cores and clockspeed, the cpu would be able to handle it. (16 times stronger in theory) it has 1gb of shared ram, which should be plenty. (partly ram/gpu) the amount of vram depends, i've seen things from 128 to 244mb, which is around 50 times more. However, the GPU is also used in a Nokia701 (according to wiki) Chances are slim that we might see a PS2 emulator (completely running on cpu perhaps?) I really wish it would be possible. Maybe with some very clever software optimizing it could be done. Not anytime soon i think.

  • Emulation performance really depends on platforms. x86 CPU emulation on a Pi is about twice as slow, certainly not 10 times as slow. The real problem here is that the PS2 CPU is not nearly as popular as x86. Nov 2, 2021 at 14:47

My answer is somewhat inspired by @carmenPPlongoria pretty similar, as in analogy-wise, question here.

And user @NateEldredge gave a pretty nice explanation, ultimately concluding:

It would be like trying to play Call of Duty on your microwave oven.

Nate Eldredge @ bitcoin.stackexchange.com

The point is: RPi, PS, Bitcoin Miners and Microwave Ovens are all powerful electronic devices, but they are just not meant to do each others work.

One of the greatest issues the structural difference in chip|processor architecture, making emulation difficult. Also we can't simply port or share load between CPU & GPU if the code is optimized to run on either CPU or to exploit GPU.

Following should have been a comment, but I can't comment yet-

If you still haven't accepted defeat- I think (just wildly thinking) you can try to build wine on the *nix OS (this guy, Wine on Raspberry Pi, did it) of your RPi & hope PCX2 will run. Let's not forget that ARM support is on WineHQ's aims list.

I saw similar & very noble motivation in a WINE Support discussion.

  • rpi+wine+pcx2 is pointless (you still need to compile pcx2 for arm) Mar 13, 2015 at 15:17
  • Wait... you can't install Wine on Pi2s... can you? I've got a 15 year old Windows Game using old D3D (even software emulation works)... if I even THOUGHT I'd be able to run it on a Pi2 I'd have already ordered a Pi2...
    – Mark Allen
    Mar 13, 2015 at 20:34
  • "It would be like trying to play Call of Duty on your microwave oven." IMO this is a bad analogy. If the RPi2 was twice as powerful then PCX2 would likely be powerful enough to run PCX2 games, I think it's possible it's powerful enough as is. I'm convinced PCX2 will work on some current (ARM) android phones (which are much more powerful than RPi2)... if compiled to ARM and some bugs fixed (?). WINE is probably not what you want to do for PSX2 emulation. Mar 14, 2015 at 1:07
  • Right. compiled to ARM would be a dream come true :)
    – RinkyPinku
    Mar 14, 2015 at 2:27
  • @AndyHayden the analogy I refered to was trying to hack a bitcoin miner as gaming pc, seems like you didn't read the question though
    – RinkyPinku
    Mar 14, 2015 at 2:29

Theoretically, it is indeed possible.

Practically the ARM support issue on PCX2 github was closed, and the project stays x86/x64-only.


Okay. So what I have come across, is the PS2's main CPU is called the Emotion Engine, based mainly off of the CPU core, MIPS R5900. ARM processors are similar in one piece of a puzzle, as ARM processors are a family of reduced instruction set computing, or RISC. Reason for the PS2 CPU built off of the MIPS R5900 core, is for the same reason ARM cores are built. The MIPS instruction set is a instruction reduced set computing. Makes it a whole heck of a lot easier, as they process commands and run processes under protocols, allowing to run games or programs under less stress, compared to other processors. That breaks down the tree to a corn stock.

Now, the Raspberry Pi 2 core, is a 32-bit ARM Cortex-A7. The PS2 core, is the MIPS R5900 basing off of the MIPS III, which uses 64-bit instruction sets instead of the older versions that use the basic 32-bit instruction sets; although the Emotion Engine CPU is built to process 128-bit instead of 64-bit This forces the Raspberry Pi 2 to begin both the emulation of 128-bit instruction sets, THEN through the emulated architecture can the PS2 hardware be emulated. This concludes to an answer of YES.

It will run slow, which does affect the speed greatly, but this will work. I have just finished compiling the two emulator cores onto my Raspberry Pi 2 cluster computer. Runs pretty well actually, considering I'm using a cluster of 4.

Trust me though, It was difficult for me to compile this onto my Raspberry Pi 2 cluster, as you MUST compile it as binary. I tried without this and I fully corrupted my 250GB HDD. $200 down to the world of binary. I will try to build a better emulation, non-lag version of the emulation cores optimized for the ARM CPU cluster( It isn't really made for the ARM CPU already), that way it will be able to run somewhat 70-100% speed on a single Raspberry Pi 2 CPU.

Happy Programming!

  • What? Just because MIPS and ARM run a smaller set of instructions than 86, doesn't mean that they're "similar". Also, please format your post; this is a giant wall of text that really doesn't make much sense.
    – Jacobm001
    Nov 27, 2015 at 0:41
  • 1. I didn't say they were similar through instruction sets, just that the Raspberry Pi 2 will be able to run more efficiently than an Intel or AMD core with the same computer Hardware Speculations. Dec 20, 2015 at 5:31

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