MSX to VGA monitor

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By Metalion

Paragon (1132)

Metalion's picture

15-04-2016, 13:34

OK, I want to get the MSX computers out of their storage and start gaming on the real thing again. The problem is I don't have a lot of space (read : not enough for a CRT). And a 17" LCD VGA monitor which is accumulating dust, doing nothing.

So it seems the only way to go for me is to go the upscan route. Which is expensive. I mean whether you choose the XGRB2, 2+, 3, Framemeister or XPC-4, they set you back 300 euros (!). But they seem to be the real good stuff, though. And there's a very interesting techie comparison here : http://retrogaming.hazard-city.de/micomsoft.html

In this website, they also speak highly of the OSSC "open-source" scan converter : http://retrogaming.hazard-city.de/ossc.html. Does anyone has any experience with it ?

I know there's also the HDMI cartridge (WIP), but I voluntarily did not speak about it (though it does look great), because I'm not searching for a HDMI output.

Is there something else I should consider ?

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By syn

Paragon (1963)

syn's picture

15-04-2016, 14:49

That OSSC looks nice, thanks for reminding me of this project. If I recall correctly the creator is also a MRC user but I am not sure.

If input lag isnt a problem for you, (eg you dont play many games and all you do is listen/make music) you could try use some cheap converter from ebay/aliexpress.

By Metalion

Paragon (1132)

Metalion's picture

15-04-2016, 19:37

I plan on gaming and testing game development, so lag would be an issue.

Apparently, the OSSC isn't yet ready to be sold, but will be in the coming months.
There is a Facebook page : https://www.facebook.com/videogameperfection/?fref=ts

By raymond

Champion (440)

raymond's picture

15-04-2016, 19:52

I have a GBS8200. Which works reasonably and is very cheap. Smile

By syn

Paragon (1963)

syn's picture

15-04-2016, 20:01

In that case TBH I feel a real CRT is the only way to go. Flatscreen monitors and tvs always have input lag. Even the best out there has 0.7ms lag http://hubpages.com/technology/Top-Gaming-Monitor

I was in the same situation as you, I wanted lagless screen but didnt have the space for it, at least I thought

I managed to make room for 2 on my desk now, soon 3, once I build a stand like this http://www.ikeahackers.net/2013/09/triple-monitor-stand.html easy and cheap to make about 30 euros

By syn

Paragon (1963)

syn's picture

15-04-2016, 20:08

raymond wrote:

I have a GBS8200. Which works reasonably and is very cheap. Smile

I think I have seen this one before, thought the lack of scart made it not worth it.

How do you connect msx to this and how is the image quality/lag?

By Metalion

Paragon (1132)

Metalion's picture

15-04-2016, 20:10

raymond wrote:

I have a GBS8200. Which works reasonably and is very cheap. Smile

Two problems with that converter :
1 - Only YUV input, which means you have to hack something before
2 - No scanline modes

syn wrote:

I was in the same situation as you, I wanted lagless screen but didnt have the space for it, at least I thought

I think I could live with a small lag (a few ms, but still less than a frame).

By raymond

Champion (440)

raymond's picture

15-04-2016, 20:45

I have connected my scart to it. Soldered the required input cables onto a female scart connector. Then connected my MSX with scart to the connector. The image quality is reasonable. The input quality from the MSX is no HD so the result will also never be.

I have played some games on it and there is a little lag, however from what point does the lag making a game unplayable? I do not know which part lags the most, the converter or the LCD screen to which it is attached Smile For me it works.

By Louthrax

Prophet (2276)

Louthrax's picture

15-04-2016, 20:56

raymond wrote:

from what point does the lag making a game unplayable?

Depends on the game of course (I don't mind a 10 frames lag on text adventure games Smile). With a 60 FPS shooter like Knightmare you can feel a 2 frames lag. Or even if you don't feel it you'll die more frequently !

By Metalion

Paragon (1132)

Metalion's picture

25-04-2016, 20:47

After a bit of research, things are not as easy ... After reading (and watching) several comparison tests, I was prepared (read : my wallet was prepared) to go the Framemeister road. But the Framemeister only offers HDMI output, which my monitor does not accept (VGA only). HDMI is digital, VGA is analog, so no lossless adaptor exists.

OK. I was then prepared to go even farther, and buy a new PC monitor (because they have less lag than a TV) with a HDMI output. They do exist, and they do have a specific 1080p resolution (instead of the more common - for PC - 1024p). Aha ! But I prefer a 4/3 sized monitor. And that does not exist with HDMI input. Allright, what about with DVI input then ? They do exist in 4/3, but their resolution is - and I don't know why - 1024p, not 1080p.

Why bother you say ?

Well, because the best mode coming from the Framemeister is the 720p with scanlines. And I can figure that, although not perfect, the 1080p will handle better the 720p image, since the ratio between the two is a simple one. Which is not the case for a 1024p display.

What's your opinion on this ?

By Grauw

Ascended (9072)

Grauw's picture

25-04-2016, 22:22

I don't mind 16:9, there is a 4:3 mode usually (esp. on TV-monitors), also offered by the framemeister I think, and the borders don't bother me... And besides, why don't we make 16:9 games for MSX? Smile

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