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Old 29 September 2018, 01:47   #21
nexus
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still impressive
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Old 29 September 2018, 07:04   #22
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This single demo sums up how HAM8 can play videos, very well.

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Old 29 September 2018, 11:52   #23
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Originally Posted by Mrz View Post
in high res ie 640x512 PAL or NTSC 640x400 AGA sucks ,is slow as turtle
VGA is way faster in high resolutions
I think you mean SVGA. VGA only does 16 colors in 640x480, and in bitplanes (not chunky).

Comparing modern 'VGA' to what was available in 1992 is not fair. In 1992 most PCs had ISA VGA cards with no hardware acceleration, and since ISA bus bandwidth is only about the same as OCS their hires performance really sucked. The VESA local bus (which was introduced in 1992 but didn't become popular until 1993-4) was supposed to fix this, but only came on high-end 486 motherboards and often had compatibility issues.

In 1991 I opened a computer store selling Amigas and PCs. 386SXs were more popular than DXs because customers thought the higher designation meant it was better (486s were available, but at a price that few could justify). When the A1200 came out we gave customers the choice of a Commodore 386SX-16 with 2MB RAM and Windows 3.0, or an 'equivalent' Amiga 1200 system for the same price. Those PCs were slow as a snail in 640x480, but people still bought them over the Amiga because Windows. A few years later they were worthless.

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Animations in HAM8 are very buggy because HAM8 modes have lot of bugs, gfx glitches everywhere when there is movement (green dots)
HAM8 mode is usefull only for a static screen, ie to show pictures,
If you understood how HAM8 works you would know that graphic 'glitches' are simply a sign of sloppy rendering.

HAM8 offered full 24 bit color in hires at a time when SVGA cards could only do 256 colors. The only problem with HAM8 is the processing power required to properly render animations in real-time, which made it less useful than normal bitmap modes for games. When pre-rendered and played back on a fast machine, HAM8 video is almost as good as 32 bit on a PC.

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And with a fast enough hard drive even a stock A1200 can do a pretty good job. Imagine seeing this in 1992!

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Old 29 September 2018, 15:11   #24
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AGA does not capture the spirit of the Amiga at all. The spirit of the Amiga was to be far ahead of it's time, revolutionary, and unique.

The AGA chipset fell short of this mark, being well and truly outdated by the VGA IBM PC's that existed at the time.
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Old 29 September 2018, 15:36   #25
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Originally Posted by Hewitson View Post
The AGA chipset fell short of this mark, being well and truly outdated by the VGA IBM PC's that existed at the time.
Bruce Abbott says otherwise. Comparing AGA to VGA (I'm guessing you don't mean SVGA) is unfair, since VGA is a pile of crap and AGA is better than it.
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Old 29 September 2018, 15:44   #26
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Bruce Abbott says otherwise. Comparing AGA to VGA (I'm guessing you don't mean SVGA) is unfair, since VGA is a pile of crap and AGA is better than it.
Why can an A1200 not run Wolfenstein or Doom at an acceptable framerate then?

The capabilities of AGA sucked several years before it was even released.
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Old 29 September 2018, 15:55   #27
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HAM8 is better suited for still images because a good rendering takes time.
For videos ya better have a scene that moves a lot, otherwise rendering artifacts become too visible. And as green is most visible it is setup first, thus green pixels are occasionnally seen.

AGA still has hardware sprites. VGA doesn't.
AGA still has copper. VGA doesn't.
AGA can setup screens of any size, with anything from 1 to 8 bits per pixel.
Etc.
Saying VGA is better than AGA is misknowing both.

So yes AGA isn't that much ahead of its time. But when it came out, peecees hadn't really caught up yet (at least, not on everything).
It captures the old spirit and pushes it one step forward.
Less old, but still old.

Nevertheless with AGA i can setup a frame buffer in a matter of seconds and happily touch it without any special care.
But I'm just unable to do that with todays machines. Makes the simplest of things just too complicated.
AGA can look like BS today in comparison to modern displays, yet it's still a lot easier to use (if you think otherwise gimme the code !).
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Old 29 September 2018, 15:57   #28
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Why can an A1200 not run Wolfenstein or Doom at an acceptable framerate then?
For the same reason a 386SX-16 can't run them either.
On the other hand, can a 386 with VGA run Superfrog at an acceptable framerate ?
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Old 29 September 2018, 16:58   #29
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No, I never personally felt AGA captured that essence the original chipset had.

AGA was evolutionary (with corners cut and other compromises) rather than revolutionary (OCS). Watch the 1985 CES show that launched the Amiga with the original chipset - now that was something special.

AGA felt like slapping a turbo on a car and expecting it to run perfectly without upgrading all the other components of the car to handle the extra power.
Is that a good analogy? Probably not

In short I'd have kept my original A500 rather than upgrade to the A1200 (if given the chance to go back in time).

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Old 29 September 2018, 18:34   #30
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For the same reason a 386SX-16 can't run them either.
On the other hand, can a 386 with VGA run Superfrog at an acceptable framerate ?

Wolfenstein does run on high-end 286's, and also on a 386SX. Doom requires better hardware, so a 386/40 MHz is probably a minimum, and it won' run fast on that. Doom runs on Amiga too, but requires a fast 68030 and AGA as a minimum (won't run fast on that either).



But yeah, a VGA card is not comparable to AGA really, it would mean then that the only thing you could do with chipset is to open a screen, and good luck with rest.
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Old 23 October 2018, 01:07   #31
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I never had an AGA machine back in the day but have recently purchased an A1200 and, whilst I think it's kind of the coolest computer I've ever owned, I don't honestly know how to show it off -

If I want to show non-Amiga people games that really demonstrate what the Amiga can do, they're all OCS games - eg: Agony, Lionheart, Elfmania.

What games or demos run on a stock 1200 (or 1200 with fast RAM) that blow away what the 500 can do?
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Old 23 October 2018, 01:28   #32
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Are AGA Amiga's true Amigas? Of course they are.

But they were a compromise of what the designers originally intended for the next gen Amiga.

So in that sense, it sort of isn't 'finished'?

That doesn't really capture the design paradigm of the A1000, 500, 2000, and I think 3000.

But do you equate design philosophy with spirit?

Honestly - as far as i'm concerned, anything designed by the Commodore team before commodore fell to pieces captures the spirit of the Amiga. That even includes the CDTV which doesn't (I believe?) have any Amiga branding and wasn't marketed as an Amiga.

If it's an Amiga, it captures the spirit of the Amiga - it certainly captures the spirit of Commodore in particular, when you consider the ups and downs and stupid decisions.

Thats my two bits

John
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Old 23 October 2018, 01:37   #33
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What games or demos run on a stock 1200 (or 1200 with fast RAM) that blow away what the 500 can do?
It's a great question.
When I start to think about AGA games that were impressive looking (at least to me, like Banshee, Flink).. They don't use AGA graphics modes.
Of course, how much of that is because AGA was later in the Amiga lifespan. If the Amiga had gone another 5 years with Commodore, would the devs had pushed out some even more impressive AGA games?
By the time AGA was out, the devs knew how to get LOTS our of the OCS/ECS modes..
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Old 23 October 2018, 07:19   #34
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What games or demos run on a stock 1200 (or 1200 with fast RAM) that blow away what the 500 can do?
AGA Demos? Well, here's a list of the most popular demos here, although most of them will need a 68040 or more to run. If you click on each page in the list and then look at the attached YouTube video, you can get a good idea of what AGA is capable of.
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Old 23 October 2018, 09:11   #35
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It's a great question.
When I start to think about AGA games that were impressive looking (at least to me, like Banshee, Flink).. They don't use AGA graphics modes.
Of course, how much of that is because AGA was later in the Amiga lifespan. If the Amiga had gone another 5 years with Commodore, would the devs had pushed out some even more impressive AGA games?
By the time AGA was out, the devs knew how to get LOTS our of the OCS/ECS modes..
You have hit the nail on the head - there were some cool AGA-only games but they don't seem to be AGA-only for any obvious reason (other than it's probably easier to code for 2meg RAM than for 1meg)

Quote:
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AGA Demos? Well, here's a list of the most popular demos here, although most of them will need a 68040 or more to run. If you click on each page in the list and then look at the attached YouTube video, you can get a good idea of what AGA is capable of.
Demos are one area where I would expect the 1200 to shine - when I browse through demo archives AGA seems to dominate.
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Old 23 October 2018, 09:34   #36
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Nexus 7 is the obvious stock A1200 demo that springs to mind. It does quite a few things impossible on ECS.
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Old 23 October 2018, 09:44   #37
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If you click on each page in the list and then look at the attached YouTube video, you can get a good idea of what AGA is capable of.
Based on most demos, you get the idea that AGA is terribly slow and only capable of being used as a framebuffer.
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Old 23 October 2018, 09:56   #38
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It's a great question.
When I start to think about AGA games that were impressive looking (at least to me, like Banshee, Flink).. They don't use AGA graphics modes.
Of course, how much of that is because AGA was later in the Amiga lifespan. If the Amiga had gone another 5 years with Commodore, would the devs had pushed out some even more impressive AGA games?
By the time AGA was out, the devs knew how to get LOTS our of the OCS/ECS modes..
Flink is AGA only, despite not looking technical impressive and low ish (64?) in colours its not possible on OCS, thats the trouble when people think AGA they automatically think 256 colours on every game, but the fact that if you have more playfields and othen stuff that goes out of the window and it goes back to a quarter of that.
I think AGA was pretty much pushed, its not like OCS where it took years for devs to bang the metal, make libs and routines from scratch, alot of the groundwork had been done in the 7 years previous, AGA was basically just a ‘new layer’ ECS++ with a faster CPU. But imo their arent many AGA games that impress the way OCS games did, Banshee is nice but not impressive as you say, and most other AGA games that whilst also ‘nice’ also had an OCS version that was technically more impressive because of the older hardware it was running on.
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Old 23 October 2018, 11:12   #39
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Olofight was very impressive, albeit an utterly crappy game. Nothing OCS/ECS could reproduce technically-wise. Gloom is another example.
I don't think AGA was really exploited to its fullest by games or demos. Most impressive stuff required acceleration as users had moved on to stronger machines after Commodore died.
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Old 23 October 2018, 11:23   #40
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Based on most demos, you get the idea that AGA is terribly slow and only capable of being used as a framebuffer.
What do you think of AGA, then? You've coded lots of stuff in it, after all.
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