Smash Box Designer Troubleshooting


Below are instructions on mitigating issues with Saving and Loading data to and from the Smash Box from the Smash Box Designer.

Ensure you have the latest firmware: Smash Box Designer Download

1. Install the CH340 drivers.

[You do not need the Smash Box plugged in during this step.]

The Designer download should come with CH340 drivers, located in the "Drivers and Help Guide" folder with the Designer download.

Open that folder and then select "Smash Box 2021 Drivers."

An admin window should show up and ask if you want to run this program, select "Yes."

Next the Device Driver Install / UnInstall window will show up.
Make sure "CH340[...]" or "CH341[...]" is selected, then press "INSTALL."

If you get a "Device Install Error" that most likely means that you already have the drivers installed.

Once the drivers are installed, restart your computer.

2. Run in Administrator Mode

[You do not need the Smash Box plugged in during this step.]

To ensure that the antivirus or other programs on your computer are not interfering with the Smash Box Designer, we recommend using Administrator mode.

2A. Open in Admin Mode

Right click the Smash Designer application, then select "Run as administrator."

You can do this from the folder or the desktop shortcut.

A window will show up asking you to run the program. Select "Yes."

2B. Setting Admin Mode as Default

You can also set the Smash Box Designer and Firmware Updater - and their components - to run in admin mode every time.

First, open the Smash Box Designer folder.

These are the files you want to set for admin mode:

  • avrdude
  • avrdude2
  • Designer
  • Firmware Updater

Right click one of the files, and select "Properties" (at the bottom of the menu).

Once the "Properties" window is open:

  1. Click on the "Compatibility" tab
  2. Check the "Run as administrator" box
  3. Then select "Apply"

Select "OK" and follow this process with all of these files:

  • avrdude
  • avrdude2
  • Designer
  • Firmware Updater

Once you are finished, the files should all have a blue and yellow 'shield' in the corner of their icons.

3. Use the USB-B port

Use the USB-B port on the side of the Smash Box and connect it to the PC to use the Designer and Firmware Updater.


Do not use the gaming port or have the Smash Box plugged into anything else.


Use a USB-B to USB-A cable (included with your Smash Box).

4. Specify the COM Port

In order to properly save to and load from your Smash Box, this is the step that is most important to ensure is done correctly.

4A. Determine which COM port your Smash Box is using in Windows Device Manager

Use the Windows search bar to find the program, then select "Device Manager."

Once Device Manager is open, select "Ports (COM & LPT)." 

Within that there should be a device that says: "USB-SERIAL CH340" or something similar. If you have multiple ports in this section and do not know which one is the Smash Box: disconnect and reconnect the Smash Box to see which new port shows up.

The "(COM#)" is the COM port number you will use in the Designer and/or Firmware Updater.

[Note: This COM port number can and will change when you unplug and replug the Smash Box into a different USB port. In general, it is safe to check which COM port your Smash Box is in case you have multiple devices using COM ports.]

4B. Specify COM port in the Designer

On the Smash Box Designer, go to the bottom of the window and click the "Use A Specific COM Port" box. Once clicked, you should be able to select from a list of COM ports - choose the COM port that corresponds to your Smash Box.

In the "Options" tab of the Designer, you can also choose to ignore COM ports you know that are not your Smash Box. This will ensure only your Smash Box is being connected to Designer.

4C. Specify COM port in the Firmware Updater

On the Firmware Updater, on the right side of the window click the "Use A Specific COM Port" box. Once clicked, you should be able to select from a list of COM ports - choose the COM port that corresponds to your Smash Box. (You can also use the "Ignore these COM ports" list to select all the COM ports you do not want to use, just in case.)


5. Change USB ports

Use a different USB port on your PC.

  • Try every single USB port, even the ports on the back of your PC.
  • In general, do not use a USB hub.
  • List of USB ports that will most likely work
    • USB 2.0 ports directly on your motherboard.
    • USB 2.0 hubs connected to USB 3.0 port or USB-C port
    • Powered USB 2.0 hubs
  • List of USB ports that will most likely not work
    • USB 1.1 ports
    • USB Hubs connected through a USB 2.0 port
    • USB 2.0 ports that cannot provide a high enough voltage (ports on your PC case, hubs, KVMs)
    • Certain USB 3.0/3.1/3.1Gen2 ports
    • USB-C port adapters

If you continue to have issues, please post in the #tech-support channel of our Discord or email us at support@hitboxarcade.com with a specific description of your issue.



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