R36S Handheld Battery Replacement & Common Issues

Here is how to easily replace the battery in your R36S handheld with the exact same battery type that the console uses by default. Done in less than 3 minutes!

Check out our hands-on review of this neat console here! – R36S Handheld Emulator Console Hands-On Review

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What Kind of Battery Does the R36S Handheld Use?

Open battery compartment on the back of the R36S console.
The R36S by default uses a removable 3200 mAh li-ion battery which can be easily replaced.

The R36S handheld uses a standard removable 3.7 V 3200 mAh Li-ion battery (type 804066) connected to the mainboard with a standard 2-pin JST 1.25mm connector.

Despite that being the case, the markings on the outside of our test unit signify that a Li-Po battery should be in use here. This however, is not true, as the R36S is powered by a lithium-ion cell, rather than a lithium-polymer one.

The 804066 battery cell which the R36 uses derives its name from its dimensions in millimeters, so it’s exactly 8.0mm X 40mm X 66mm in size. Smaller batteries of the same type will work equally well with this device.

Front and back side of the R36S handheld battery up close.
Front and back side of the R36S handheld battery up close.

This battery can be easily unplugged, removed and replaced after opening the battery compartment which is located on the back of the device. If you get yourself a battery of the same type with the exact same operational voltage you can easily replace it, should it fail on you one day. Scroll down for the exact replacement instructions!

You can get the 804066 type batteries in many places online, including Aliexpress. Just be sure to get one with a connector wire already attached if you’re not really into soldering, and remember not to connect the pin connector backwards!

What Type Of Charger To Use When Charging The R36S?

Bottom of the R36S handheld emulator console.
The R36S is charged through the port labeled “DC”, located on the bottom of the device.

You should be fine charging your device with a 5V 1.5A adapter and a USB-A to USB-C power cable plugged into the port labeled “DC” which you can find on the bottom of the device.

The USB charging cable should come in the box alongside the console. If you can’t find it, look on the bottom of the box, under the plastic part which held the device – it should be hidden right there!

If you want to be absolutely sure that you’re going low and slow when charging up your console’s battery, you can always use the USB cable plugged into one of your laptop or PC USB ports.

This device doesn’t seem to support the USB power delivery standard, so keep that in mind.

Keep in mind that regardless of keeping good battery hygiene, many cheaper Chinese batteries (like the ones most handheld emulators get shipped with), don’t have a very good lifespan to begin with.

While for sure you’ll be fine using the stock battery for quite a while, as with every handheld emulator we recommend you to look around for replacements online early on.

Check out also: Steam Deck Emulation Battery Life – Is It Any Good?

Can You Charge The R36S Using a Power Bank?

Yes, the R36S can be easily charged from a power bank, and the ideal parameters for the charging output would be close to the ones of the charger we mentioned above.

Keep in mind that this device already has a pretty good battery life which can grant you hours of gameplay on full battery, especially when emulating older systems such as SNES or GBA. A powerbank however can be great for using the device far from the outlet – perhaps during a lengthy roadtrip?

How To Replace The Battery In The R36S?

The 2-pin JST 1.25mm battery connector plug on the R36S handheld motherboard.
Your new battery should be connected in the same way that the old one was – be sure not to wire it backwards.

When you’re sure you’ve bought a compatible battery with a connector wire already on it (look above for info), the replacement is very simple. Here is a very short step-by-step guide on how to do it safely.

  1. The first thing you need to do is to open the latch on the back of the device, and carefully nudge out and then unplug the old battery plug from the main board. Take note of how the battery is connected to the motherboard, and the cable colors. This is the correct way to plug in the new battery, as attempting to wire it backwards could damage your device.
  2. The second thing is to plug your new battery in, in the same way an old one was connected and placed inside. Once the battery is inside and the connector is plugged in all the way through, try to boot up the device to see if it’s working correctly. If it is, you’re done!

And yes, as we’ve already mentioned, you can use a smaller sized battery of the same type. It’s a really neat way to reduce the weight of the device for even better on-the-go gaming experience!

Why Is The R36S Battery Indicator Jumping / Changing Rapidly?

This is a known problem, in fact not only with the R36S, but also with many other ArkOS based handheld devices. Rapid drops and percentage changes on the battery indicator are still being reported by many users, however most of the time they do not affect the actual battery life or performance, and in most cases they are a software-side issue.

If your model does this, stay calm as this is quite a common issue. In fact, our test unit did the exact same. This is a widespread issue when it comes to a plenty of handheld emulators using ArkOS (and other similar Linux distributions).

There may be two reasons for this happening on your device. The first one is the most common one. Software-side battery level reporting is not as simple as it sounds, especially on simple mobile devices without proper battery monitoring hardware inside the device.

It’s often the case, even with more sophisticated devices running under various Linux distributions, that battery reporting for new devices is skewed, or in some way incorrect, especially during first few battery cycles.

R36S handheld emulator console unboxed.
Battery reporting issues are quite common when it comes to Linux-based handheld emulators.

If that’s the case for you, go through a few battery charge/discharge cycles by simply using the device as intended, and see if the problem goes away. If the problem lies within the automatic system-level battery calibration, it might resolve itself with time, depending on how auto-battery calibration and power level reporting works on the OS your device uses.

The second, and very much less common reason, but still worth mentioning, as we’re dealing with cheaper batteries is a simple battery fault. Many times over cheap handheld emulators made in China come with, well, the cheapest batteries the manufacturer can source.

In some very rare cases you may get a faulty battery inside your device. If the problem persists after a few weeks of usage, you may consider getting a replacement battery for your device.

How To Get The Battery Percentage In The ArkOS Menu

This is really simple: on the R36S (and other ArkOS 2.0 based consoles), you need to go to the UI Settings menu by clicking the Start Button, then enter the Show Battery Status option and select Icon and text.

This way the battery percentage indicator will display on your home screen, every time you enter the main menu and the game selection screen.

If you don’t see the options above you most probably need to update your ArkOS which you can do even without a microSD card adapter, a PC, or a WiFi adapter! See how to do this here: How To Update R36S ArkOS With No WiFI Adapter And No PC

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