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MSX/SVI/ColecoVision/SG-1000 (blueMSX)


blueMSX is a cycle accurate emulator that emulates all generations of MSX computers as well as SVI, ColecoVision and Sega SG-1000.


The blueMSX core has been authored by

  • Daniel Vik

The blueMSX core is licensed under

A summary of the licenses behind RetroArch and its cores can be found here.


Content that can be loaded by the blueMSX core have the following file extensions:

  • .rom
  • .ri
  • .mx1
  • .mx2
  • .col
  • .dsk
  • .cas
  • .sg
  • .sc
  • .m3u


RetroArch database(s) that are associated with the blueMSX core:


The blueMSX core requires the 'Databases' and 'Machines' folders from a full installation of blueMSX.

Go to Main Menu > Online Updater > Core System Files Downloader and download ''. That's all you need to do! The 'Databases' and 'Machines' folders will be extracted and moved to your RetroArch 'system' folder automatically.

Alternatively, if your frontend doesn't have the 'Core System Files Downloader':

You can download the 'Databases' and 'Machines' folders from an official full standalone blueMSX emulator installation. Get near the bottom of the page.

Move/Copy the 'Databases' and 'Machines' Folders to RetroArch's System directory.


Frontend-level settings or features that the blueMSX core respects.

Feature Supported
Core Options
RetroArch Cheats
Native Cheats
Disk Control
Crop Overscan


The blueMSX core's library name is 'blueMSX'

The blueMSX core saves/loads to/from these directories.

Frontend's System directory

File Description
bluemsx.ini blueMSX Config
bluemsx_history.ini blueMSX History

Geometry and timing

  • The blueMSX core's core provided FPS is 60
  • The blueMSX core's core provided sample rate is 44100 Hz
  • The blueMSX core's base width is (Base width)
  • The blueMSX core's base height is (Base height)
  • The blueMSX core's max width is (Max width)
  • The blueMSX core's max height is (Max height)
  • The blueMSX core's core provided aspect ratio is (Ratio)


ColecoVision Gamepad Mapping is as follow:

  • Button 1 as Retropad A
  • Button 2 as Retropad B
  • Dial keys 1 to 8 as X, Y, R, L, R2, L2, R3, L3
  • Star (*) as Select, Hash (#) as Start
  • 0 & 9 are on keyboard 1 & 2 for Player 1
  • 0 & 9 are on keyboard 3 & 4 for Player 2.

SpectraVideo Cassettes

To play SpectraVideo cassettes type 'cload' then 'run'

or BLOAD ''CAS:'',R depending on the game.

Multiple-disk games

If foo is a multiple-disk game, you should have .dsk files for each one, e.g. foo (Disk 1).dsk, foo (Disk 2).dsk, foo (Disk 3).dsk.

To take advantage of BlueMSX Disk Control feature for disk swapping, an index file (a m3u file) should be made.

Create a text file and save it as foo.m3u. Then enter your game's .dsk files on it. The m3u file contents should look something like this:


foo (Disk 1).dsk
foo (Disk 2).dsk
foo (Disk 3).dsk

After that, you can load the foo.m3u file in RetroArch with the BlueMSX core.

An alternative is to append disks to the current playlist via the "Disk Image Append" option RetroArch menu.

Core options

The blueMSX core has the following option(s) that can be tweaked from the core options menu. The default setting is bolded.

Settings with (Restart) means that core has to be closed for the new setting to be applied on next launch.

  • Machine Type (Restart) [bluemsx_msxtype] (Auto|MSX|MSXturboR|MSX2|MSX2+|SEGA - SG-1000|SEGA - SC-3000|SEGA - SF-7000|SVI - Spectravideo SVI-318|SVI - Spectravideo SVI-328|SVI - Spectravideo SVI-328 MK2|ColecoVision|Coleco (Spectravideo SVI-603))

    Manually select the machine type you would like the core to start in.

  • Crop Overscan [bluemsx_overscan] (disabled|enabled|MSX2)

    Forces cropping of overscanned frames

Crop Overscan Off

Crop Overscan On

Crop Overscan MSX2

  • VDP Sync Type (Restart) [bluemsx_vdp_synctype] (Auto|50Hz|60Hz)

    Match the game/machine region frequency to avoid emulated speed issues.

  • No Sprite Limit [bluemsx_nospritelimits] (OFF|ON)

    Remove the 4 sprite per line limit which can reduce or remove sprite flicker in some games.

  • Sound YM2413 Enable (Restart) [bluemsx_ym2413_enable] (enabled|disabled)

    Awaiting description.

  • Cart Mapper Type (Restart) [bluemsx_cartmapper] (Auto|Normal|mirrored|basic|0x4000|0xC000|ascii8|ascii8sram|ascii16|ascii16sram|

    When a ROM game or application is in the database, the emulator uses the databases to apply the correct mapper. If the sha1 value of a dump is not yet in the databases, it uses an automatic mapper detection system, but it can fail in some cases. In this situation, you can manually select the correct mapper.


The blueMSX core supports the following device type(s) in the controls menu, bolded device types are the default for the specified user(s):

User 1 device types

  • None - Doesn't disable input. There's no reason to switch to this.
  • RetroPad - Joypad
  • RetroKeyboard - Keyboard - Keyboard inputs are always active. Has keymapper support.
  • RetroPad Keyboard Map - Joypad - Awaiting description.

User 2 device types

  • None - Doesn't disable input. There's no reason to switch to this.
  • RetroPad - Joypad
  • RetroKeyboard - Keyboard - Keyboard inputs are always active.

Controller tables


User 1 and 2 Remap descriptors for 'RetroPad' device type RetroPad Inputs blueMSX core inputs
Button 2 Button 2, Coleco Button 2
Button 3 Button 3, Coleco #2
Select Select, Coleco Star (*)
Start Start, Coleco Hash (#)
Joy Up Joy Up
Joy Down Joy Down
Joy Left Joy Left
Joy Right Joy Right
Button 1 Button 1, Coleco Button 1
Button 4 Button 4, Coleco #1
Button 5 Button 5, Coleco #4
Button 6 Button 6, Coleco #3
Button 7 Button 7, Coleco #6
Button 8 Button 8, Coleco #5
Button 9 Button 9. Coleco #8
Button 10 Button 10, Coleco #7


RetroKeyboard Inputs RetroKeyboard
Keyboard Backspace BACKSPACE
Keyboard Tab TAB
Keyboard Return RETURN
Keyboard Pause PAUSE
Keyboard Escape ESCAPE
Keyboard Space SPACE
Keyboard Quote ' COLON
Keyboard Comma , COMMA
Keyboard Minus - NEGATIVE
Keyboard Period . PERIOD
Keyboard Slash / DIVIDE
Keyboard 0 0
Keyboard 1 1, Player 1 Coleco #0
Keyboard 2 2, Player 1 Coleco #9
Keyboard 3 3, Player 2 Coleco #0
Keyboard 4 4, Player 2 Coleco #9
Keyboard 5 5
Keyboard 6 6
Keyboard 7 7
Keyboard 8 8
Keyboard 9 9
Keyboard Semicolon ; SEMICOLON
Keyboard Equals = CIRCUMFLEX
Keyboard Left Bracket [ LEFT BRACKET
Keyboard Backslash \ BACKSLASH (YEN)
Keyboard Right Bracket ] RIGHT BRACKET
Keyboard Backquote ` AT
Keyboard a A
Keyboard b B
Keyboard c C
Keyboard d D
Keyboard e E
Keyboard f F
Keyboard g G
Keyboard h H
Keyboard i I
Keyboard j J
Keyboard k K
Keyboard l L
Keyboard m M
Keyboard n N
Keyboard o O
Keyboard p P
Keyboard q Q
Keyboard r R
Keyboard s S
Keyboard t T
Keyboard u U
Keyboard v V
Keyboard w W
Keyboard x X
Keyboard y Y
Keyboard z Z
Keyboard Delete DELETE
Keyboard Keypad 0 NUMPAD 0
Keyboard Keypad 1 NUMPAD 1
Keyboard Keypad 2 NUMPAD 2
Keyboard Keypad 3 NUMPAD 3
Keyboard Keypad 4 NUMPAD 4
Keyboard Keypad 5 NUMPAD 5
Keyboard Keypad 6 NUMPAD 6
Keyboard Keypad 7 NUMPAD 7
Keyboard Keypad 8 NUMPAD 8
Keyboard Keypad 9 NUMPAD 9
Keyboard Keypad Period . NUMPAD COMMA
Keyboard Keypad Divide / NUMPAD DIVIDE
Keyboard Keypad Multiply * NUMPAD MULTIPLY
Keyboard Keypad Minus - NUMPAD SUBTRACTION
Keyboard Keypad Plus + NUMPAD ADD
Keyboard Keypad Enter NUMPAD PERIOD
Keyboard Up UP
Keyboard Down DOWN
Keyboard Right RIGHT
Keyboard Left LEFT
Keyboard Insert INSERT
Keyboard Home CLS
Keyboard End STOP
Keyboard Page Up SELECT
Keyboard F1 F1
Keyboard F2 F2
Keyboard F3 F3
Keyboard F4 F4
Keyboard F5 F5
Keyboard Caps Lock CAPS
Keyboard Right Shift RIGHT SHIFT
Keyboard Left Shift LEFT SHIFT
Keyboard Left Control CONTROL
Keyboard Left Alt GRAPH
Keyboard Print PRINT

Supported combinations

  • Keyboard Left or Right Shift + Keyboard 0 = UNDERSCORE


See also

Sega - SG-1000

Microsoft - MSX

Microsoft - MSX2