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The High Definition Retrogaming Thread (Including CRT/BVM/PVM Chatter)

Wolf

Ancient Nameless Hero
(He/him)
It's hard to tell sometimes, and it occurred to me that a suggestion to JFGI might not have been out of place, if that was what it was.
 

ShakeWell

Slam Master
(he, etc.)
I don't think that was a call-out. Also, maybe you also default to that because you're having a conversation?

Was definitely not a callout. I wasn't saying "this information is publicly available," I was saying "the Satiator is now available to the general public."
 

Mr. Sensible

Pitch and Putt Duffer
A few weeks ago, I rescued this 24" Sanyo DS24425 CRT television:



It was my brother's old TV and had been sitting disused in his former bedroom closet for years. I jumped on this thing when I realized it was packing not only the standard RCA hookups, but also s-video and 480i component. It's a "flat" tube, so the image sharpness suffers somewhat around the corners, but it's not too egregious. The image is actually pretty good for a consumer CRT and it was still in decent shape overall, so I figured this was a good opportunity to integrate a dang CRT into my gaming setup. Obviously I would've preferred a PVM/BVM, but those are getting pretty rare and expensive these days, especially versus the zero dollars I paid for hauling this old Sanyo out of my dad's house.

Of course this immediately created the classic problem of "where in the ever-living hell am I going to put this thing," so after a few days hand-wringing, I resigned myself to tearing down my old console rack and shuffling shit around to make the necessary space. I had actually wanted to rewire my setup for awhile anyway and improve my cable management situation; this just gave me the kick in the ass I needed to finally get it done. More pics behind the spoilerpop:






As far as the supporting A/V gear, I've got all my 240p consoles on SCART cables connected to a gscartsw, which runs to my new RetroTink RGB2COMP via the gscartw's secondary output (which uses a VGA connector, so I had to adapt that back into SCART to feed it into the RGB2COMP), and then the RGB2COMP hooks into the CRT via the component inputs. As I mentioned above, the picture is really solid overall, but the tube could probably stand some minor tweaks to its geometry by someone who knows what they're doing. Eventually I'll get another component switcher so I can hook up my PS2 and Wii alongside the RGB2COMP without needing to swap component cables in and out, but until then it's nothing but 240p goodness all day long. I think my Framemeister might get jealous.

In short, it's been a revelation playing games on a CRT again. After a decade of owning nothing but flat-screens, I had more or less forgotten about the vibrancy and contrast of a CRT's color space.
 
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Sarge

hardcore retro gamin'
Dang, looks good. Can't beat free, and it's great that it has component inputs on it! I've got a set that's close to that size that also has component, but bizarrely doesn't have S-Video. Go figure!
 

MCBanjoMike

Infamous third lava dolphin
(He/him)
I keep seeing Toshibas with component input in a very similar form factor on my local classifieds, although I haven't managed to snag one yet. I'm not 100% sure what I'd actually do with one - there isn't room for it in my streaming setup and I don't play games on the CRT in my basement very often as it is. But you're right about the vibrancy and contrast, playing kaizo on the CRT PC monitor I bought has been pretty great on that front (and the input lag is, of course, chef's kiss).
 

ShakeWell

Slam Master
(he, etc.)
As far as the supporting A/V gear, I've got all my 240p consoles on SCART cables connected to a gscartsw, which runs to my new RetroTink RGB2COMP via the gscartw's secondary output (which uses a VGA connector, so I had to adapt that back into SCART to feed it into the RGB2COMP), and then the RGB2COMP hooks into the CRT via the component inputs. As I mentioned above, the picture is really solid overall, but the tube could probably stand some minor tweaks to its geometry by someone who knows what they're doing. Eventually I'll get another component switcher so I can hook up my PS2 and Wii alongside the RGB2COMP without needing to swap component cables in and out, but until then it's nothing but 240p goodness all day long. I think my Framemeister might get jealous.

In short, it's been a revelation playing games on a CRT again. After a decade of owning nothing but flat-screens, I had more or less forgotten about the vibrancy and contrast of a CRT's color space.

Wait... do you have the old model gscartsw? Mine just has two SCART outs. (Which is also how I do this same trick. One goes to my Framemeister, the other has a WookieeWins male SCART to female BNC cable going into my PVM.)
 

Ixo

"This is not my beautiful forum!" - David Byrne
(Hi Guy)
Is this the thread where I can post horrible things like this?



"It's a CRT! It counts!" he yelled, whilst being forceably ejected from the thread.
 

Mr. Sensible

Pitch and Putt Duffer
I keep seeing Toshibas with component input in a very similar form factor on my local classifieds, although I haven't managed to snag one yet.
One of my A/V enthusiast friends commented that there's a very good chance this Sanyo TV was actually built with a Toshiba-manufactured tube, so that might explain the similarity!
Wait... do you have the old model gscartsw? Mine just has two SCART outs. (Which is also how I do this same trick. One goes to my Framemeister, the other has a WookieeWins male SCART to female BNC cable going into my PVM.)
Yeah, I've got one of superg's old gscartsw 3.4 models with a VGA connector as the secondary output. Apparently the gscartsw "lite" version just uses normal dual SCART outputs, which would've been a little more convenient for my purposes. Fortunately etim makes a very nice VGA-to-SCART adapter that let me easily hook the VGA cable into the RetroTINK RGB2COMP. The adapter actually requires an external power source, but my gscartsw does provide power over the VGA connector, so thankfully I didn't need to connect yet another power cable just to convert the VGA signal to component...
Is this the thread where I can post horrible things like this?



"It's a CRT! It counts!" he yelled, whilst being forceably ejected from the thread.
That reminds me of the old C64 monitor my family used to use as a second television!
 

ShakeWell

Slam Master
(he, etc.)
Is this the thread where I can post horrible things like this?



"It's a CRT! It counts!" he yelled, whilst being forceably ejected from the thread.

John Linneman actually recently made a case for downscaling new games and playing them on a CRT.

 

Sarge

hardcore retro gamin'
That was a fascinating episode to watch. They're not wrong - while there are big advantages to LCD screens, we lost a lot in picture quality in the process that we're only really just now starting to catch up to on high-end screens.
 

Mr. Sensible

Pitch and Putt Duffer
I love the 440 lb. Sony PVM they show a print ad for near the end of that video, lol. You'd need to hire a moving crew to reposition that thing at all.
 

Mr. Sensible

Pitch and Putt Duffer
I've decided that, out of all the consoles I currently own, N64 games might benefit the most from being played on a CRT. I've been mowing through the back half of Ocarina of Time and the ground textures in Hyrule Field look like an ill-defined, light brown-ish mass on my Samsung LCD TV. On my Sanyo CRT, there's so much more definition between the grass and the dirt paths, it's cray-cray.
 

ShakeWell

Slam Master
(he, etc.)
I was just talking about this on stream last week, but PS1/N64/Saturn 3D absolutely benefits most from CRT play.
 

Phantoon

I cuss you bad
Yeah, they cheat outrageously using the knowledge of how CRTs work. The Playstation (and the N64 to a lesser degree) hide their dithering, for one. Saturn doing "transparencies" as another example. N64 smudge isn't as bad, somehow. CRTs also have a natural anti aliasing effect.

People who attach them to hi res fixed pixel panels and complain that they look like crap only have themselves to blame.
 

Sarge

hardcore retro gamin'
That being said, I ran the N64 to my 4K set using a RetroTINK 2X and in a lot of ways, it looked better than the CRT (I was playing Goemon's Great Adventure). But I do agree in general that N64 (and other consoles of that era) often used the nature of CRTs to achieve their best look. Another system that really looks fantastic on a CRT is the PS2. You can absolutely tell it was still designed with CRTs in mind.
 

ShakeWell

Slam Master
(he, etc.)
Saturn dithering still looks bad on my PVM, but that could be because it's a PVM? On a consumer CRT via composite, maybe it looks passable?
 

Sarge

hardcore retro gamin'
They'd have potentially gotten me if I hadn't gotten a MiSTer. Seriously, the SNES core in that thing is tremendous.
 

Mr. Sensible

Pitch and Putt Duffer
Analogue's stuff is neat, but with multi-platform devices like the MiSTer being improved on a nearly daily basis, I feel like the value proposition is on a Super NT is kind of ridiculous (if you're willing to deal with the MiSTer's learning curve, at least).
 

Sarge

hardcore retro gamin'
While it certainly isn't plug-and-play, it's surprisingly easy to set up overall. I love that "update all" script, too. Makes maintaining it a breeze.

I'm sure the biggest appeal of the Super Nt is for folks that still want to use their carts. And I definitely get it!
 

ASandoval

Old Man Gamer
(he/him)
While it certainly isn't plug-and-play, it's surprisingly easy to set up overall. I love that "update all" script, too. Makes maintaining it a breeze.

I'm sure the biggest appeal of the Super Nt is for folks that still want to use their carts. And I definitely get it!

This is where I'm at right now. In a way, having to use carts makes it more restrictive! I don't *need* this when I plan to build a Mister in a few months after I move! And yet I'm still considering getting this with no real justification.
 

Sarge

hardcore retro gamin'
Yeah, there is something to be said for circumventing "analysis paralysis" that way. I know a lot of folks that can't settle on a game when choosing from a giant list of ROMs. Even I can suffer from that to some degree, but I can usually eventually settle in and find something that sticks.
 

muteKi

Women want fish fear meme
There is exactly one feature that the Super NT has that I wish the Mister did, and that's the ability to dump carts. I am not sure that I would want to pay like an extra $100ish just for that feature given that surely the retrode and INL dumpers are much cheaper.

EDIT: scratch that they are not particularly cheaper. however mister + either is cheaper than any analogue option for a dump setup for that and even one other console...
 
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MCBanjoMike

Infamous third lava dolphin
(He/him)
The Super Nt is a fine machine, and for what it costs I think it's a pretty good value*. I don't use mine a whole lot now that I have a MiSTer, but the cart dumping ability is super nice, as is native support for original controllers. It's the price of the Nt Mini that really raises my hackles, that thing costs a king's ransom.

*Less so if you live in Canada, because the cost with shipping + import duties = mucho dinero
 

Sarge

hardcore retro gamin'
The only thing that sucks about the Retrode is that it won't dump SA1-chip games. Someone made an adapter for it, but I don't think you can get one now.

I do agree that the Super Nt price isn't exorbitant in the grand scheme of things. The Nt Mini is indeed ridiculous, though.
 
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