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Old 28 May 2020, 05:28   #1
lesta_smsc
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Calamity drivers enabled PC-to-CRT TV

Mod note: some posts moved from the MiSTer vs WinUAE thread at user (SquawkBox) request.
**************************************************

So I looked into getting Mister vs using an old laptop connected to TV. Since I had a laptop and it was more versatile to use for multiple emulations I decided to go with latter option (and it was cheaper!)

Anyhow, I now have 15khz display outputted via VGA to SCART. I am using WinUAE at present but apparently others have used FS-UAE with good results also. There is no screen tearing and the picture is pixel perfect on 28" CRT! I am running emulation at native resolution and when comparing to my original hardware I can see virtually no difference! Suffice to say I'm contemplating whether like @DamienD I move to emulation rather than original hardware as it is certainly very much appealing now to use emulation which is indifferent to having original hardware.

On the plus side I'm also able to run most retro consoles at their native resolution including MAME running just as it should on arcade monitor!

Gone are the days emulation was stretched or filtered to give more appealing image. Now you can remove all filters and play the hardware just as it would be to connecting hardware. Incredible!

Last edited by lilalurl; 12 August 2020 at 22:16.
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Old 01 August 2020, 17:03   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lesta_smsc View Post
So I looked into getting Mister vs using an old laptop connected to TV. Since I had a laptop and it was more versatile to use for multiple emulations I decided to go with latter option (and it was cheaper!)

Anyhow, I now have 15khz display outputted via VGA to SCART. I am using WinUAE at present but apparently others have used FS-UAE with good results also. There is no screen tearing and the picture is pixel perfect on 28" CRT! I am running emulation at native resolution and when comparing to my original hardware I can see virtually no difference! Suffice to say I'm contemplating whether like @DamienD I move to emulation rather than original hardware as it is certainly very much appealing now to use emulation which is indifferent to having original hardware.

On the plus side I'm also able to run most retro consoles at their native resolution including MAME running just as it should on arcade monitor!

Gone are the days emulation was stretched or filtered to give more appealing image. Now you can remove all filters and play the hardware just as it would be to connecting hardware. Incredible!
Can you explain how you use the VGA port as an RGB port as 15KHz to a CRT?
I've wanted to do that for years. The MiSTer really makes that obsolete but it would still be nice to have WinUAE that way.

MiSTer (and MiST) is mostly not distinguishable from an A500 or A1200. However, there is no sound from the floppy disks. That (to me) is part of the experience, but maybe I am picky. That is a huge advantage for WinUAE to me. That and the fact that it can emulate ANY Amiga, even ones that never existed.
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Old 01 August 2020, 17:13   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by r.cade View Post
Can you explain how you use the VGA port as an RGB port as 15KHz to a CRT?
I've wanted to do that for years. The MiSTer really makes that obsolete but it would still be nice to have WinUAE that way.

MiSTer (and MiST) is mostly not distinguishable from an A500 or A1200. However, there is no sound from the floppy disks. That (to me) is part of the experience, but maybe I am picky. That is a huge advantage for WinUAE to me. That and the fact that it can emulate ANY Amiga, even ones that never existed.
You need a compatible graphics card. My laptop has ATI which works. Mister also has the same option BTW using the VGA output! Even Raspberry Pi can do this BTW.

I made this one:
http://www.ukvac.com/forum/uploads/1360/vga2euro.gif

If you look up groovymame it will point you in the write direction. That is mame emulation using native resolution ie 15khz and the person behind it ie Calamity did the work on custom ATI video drivers to allow this to work.
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Old 11 August 2020, 01:02   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lesta_smsc View Post
You need a compatible graphics card. My laptop has ATI which works.
I made this one:
http://www.ukvac.com/forum/uploads/1360/vga2euro.gif
mame emulation using native resolution ie 15khz and the person behind it ie Calamity did the work on custom ATI video drivers to allow this to work.
Curious about that 15 Khz exploit too. Are you using a frontend superimposed over your current groovymame setup ? From my personal experience, VGA -> Scart cable couldn't do the job (I had ordered one from eBay, brand new). For the record, I use a PC fitted with a 6700 series Radeon (it's an Asus), not a laptop. Also, I don't think you absolutely need VGA out, DVI can convey the signal too (with an adapter) for a limited bunch of Radeon graphics cards. AFAIK, this is due to the versatility of Calamity latest breakthrough : "Super Resolutions / Modelines" .

Last edited by SquawkBox; 12 August 2020 at 22:36.
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Old 11 August 2020, 01:12   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SquawkBox View Post
Sorry for offtopic, curious about that 15 Khz exploit too. Are you using a frontend superimposed over your current groovymame setup ? From my personal experience, VGA -> Scart cable couldn't do the job (I had ordered one from eBay, brand new). For the record, I use a PC fitted with a 6700 series Radeon (it's an Asus), not a laptop. Also, I don't think you absolutely need VGA out, DVI can convey the signal too (with an adapter) for a limited bunch of Radeon graphics cards. AFAIK, this is due to the versatility of Calamity latest breakthrough : "Super Resolutions / Modelines" .
Just make sure your cable has the correct pin out. The cheap VGA to SCART will not work. I think they also lack enough wires to mod the cable.

I'm using Groovymame at the moment without specific front end. It's simple enough to use.

You're quite right that DVI can also output this. My laptop has VGA so I have no need to try DVI lol.

If you make the cable as shown in the pic, and your car is supported, you could easily make this work.

Calamity was gracious enough to do a write up on this which is a simple walk-through guide.
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Old 12 August 2020, 01:49   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lesta_smsc View Post
If you make the cable as shown in the pic, and your car is supported, you could easily make this work.
It's not among my abilities to make cables, just googling for insane periods of time to acquire what's needed for my setup or searching my own inventory for cables, adapters and such (occasionally, ending up breaking or bricking things, that's what happens when you never took a course in electronics). When I realized that the VGA -> Scart cable I had ordered wouldn't work (I had to figure that out entirely by myself since, for some reason, peeps from a French forum I am a member of were trying to convince me that I was doing it wrong software-wisely), I ordered the UMSA aka the Ultimate Scart Adapter with its power supply, and it all worked beautifully since then. UMSA is advertised as a professional solution since it uses "logic", whatever that is supposed to mean :
Quote:
Composite Video Sync Generatin by logic. Thus a wider range of graphic cards and TV are supported. This results in more stable signal as well.
Here's me playing TMNT ~ Turtles in Time on my Samsung CRT TV hooked to a @3Ghz Core2Duo PC with 6700 series Radeon, wireless Logitech pad in hands :



Chip a coin, and join in!

Btw, have you considered offering at a decent price such custom made cables on eBay ? Having in mind how ubiquitous cheap made ones have become, I am sure it could raise some interest.

Last edited by SquawkBox; 25 August 2020 at 00:25.
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Old 12 August 2020, 08:49   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SquawkBox View Post
It's not among my abilities to make cables, just googling for insane periods of time to acquire what's needed for my setup or searching my own inventory for cables, adapters and such (occasionally, ending up breaking or bricking things, that's what happens when you never took a course in electronics). When I realized that the VGA -> Scart cable I had ordered wouldn't work (I had to figure that out entirely by myself since, for some reason, peeps from a French forum I am a member of were trying to convince me that I was doing it wrong software-wisely), I ordered the UMSA aka the Ultimate Scart Adapter with its power supply, and it all worked beautifully since then. UMSA is advertised as a professional solution since it uses "logic", whatever that is supposed to mean :


Here's me playing TMNT ~ Turtles in Time on my Samsung CRT TV hooked to a @3Ghz Core2Duo PC with 6700 series Radeon, wireless Logitech pad in hands :



Chip a coin, and join in!

Btw, have you considered offering at a decent price such custom made cables on eBay ? Having in mind how ubiquitous cheap made ones have become, I am sure it could raise some interest.
Yes I looked in to UMSA. I preferred something that didn't require additional PSU.

I literally did this out of curiosity but now its my machine for emu lol.

As for cables. You can buy them on eBay.com and they come from Spain. I couldn't wait so I made one. In all fairness I have been looking at redoing a cable now I know it works with better adaptors and wires... maybe I will at some point... or just buy it from eBay lol.
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Old 12 August 2020, 13:41   #8
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Well, if what you have in mind is Spanish based company ArcadeForge (not attempting to do any naming and shaming here, said cable might prove useful in other scenarios), I am 100% positive their VGA -> Scart cable falls into either categories you elaborated about earlier on (or both) : Incorrect pin out, or lacking enough wires to be properly modded. The very minute I plugged in the UMSA (which Calamity himself mentions in one of his tutorials) instead of said cable, it worked wonders, proof that everything was in readiness through VMMaker (modelines), that EDID emulation was active for the TV set, and that Calamity drivers were up and running.

Also, maybe you were aware of that but not all emulators will fine tune receiver resolution in similar fashion. GroovyMame does that automagically upon each different arcade game loading up, that's a given. On the other hand, and unless I am mistaken, you get 15 KHz all right with rest of emulators, but resolution remains unchanged whatever game you have decided to play (unless you change it manually).

Last edited by SquawkBox; 06 February 2021 at 08:52.
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Old 12 August 2020, 14:30   #9
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I had a Win XP based setup running this (via UMSA), but decided to build a new Win10 based one, because Calamity's XP drivers and tools are outdated. About to order the components...

Last edited by dreadnought; 13 August 2020 at 13:16.
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Old 12 August 2020, 22:33   #10
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Nice to have a dedicated thread on this! Thank you @lilalurl

@SquawkBox I belive ArcadeForge was one the companies, yes. Thank you for the heads up.

My make shift cable does the trick. It's nowhere near ideal or fancy but it does the job perfectly.

As for other emulators, retroarch has CRT SwitchRes which automates correct 15kHz resolution. Mine requires some fine tweaking since I removed dynamic modelines lol. I've created custom modelines which allows me to play both MAME and WinUAE at perfect resolution with little to no appreciable lag.

I would say that you need to try DOS games using CRT. The games look so much better!
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Old 14 August 2020, 03:57   #11
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So I took a quick look at that cable schematics, and I notice there was a molex connector. How do you plug it ? I mean molex connectors from the power supply pack usually can't be reached from outside the case, can they ?

Last edited by SquawkBox; 14 August 2020 at 15:08.
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Old 14 August 2020, 08:21   #12
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You don't even need it provided you can manually select RGB input and aspect ratio on your TV. Some TV are set to RGB and aspect ratio via specific voltages on certain pins. If I recall correctly these are the options:

4:3
16:9
RGB
Auto channel switch

This is all done based on voltages. I just put USB connector but that only gives it 5V lol. On my TV I can leave it out and still get RGB.
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Old 30 December 2020, 16:12   #13
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I've finally got it all together myself (PC+crtemudriver -> UMSA VGA-SCART adapter -> Trinitron. Out of all the retro rabbit holes I've ever visited I must say this one's is probably the deepest, and most complicated.

GroovyMAME works now, though it still needs some tweaking. After a several hours long battle I also managed to get Retroarch's switchres to start playing along. Was wondering if anybody managed to get the micros (C64, ZX Spectrum, etc) working in it? Their display is still all over the place (guess it has to do with 50Hz modelines).

Also, is it possible to somehow run individual emus this way? Using the Arcade OSD perhaps?
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Old 30 December 2020, 20:04   #14
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Individual emulators can be run BUT I had problems unless the mode selected matched the modelines configured. It was more trouble that it's worth and Groovymame and Retroarch works well enough.

Did you buy UMSA from within UK?
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Old 31 December 2020, 11:16   #15
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Problem is, Retroarch does not cover all the platforms, especially the more obscure ones. Even for Amiga you only have P-UAE, and last I checked it was a pain to use. Retropie is much better in this respect, but then I'd have to run Linux (I think?).

Any chance you could post your retroarch config, or send it somewhere? I'm having a deja vu from trying to set up my Retropie in similar fashion on RPi. It took literally months of experimenting with configs, since there was very little info out there. I'd rather not go through this again.

How did you get WinUAE to display properly btw?

I bought UMSA directly from Arcade Forge, they are based in Germany I think.
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Old 09 January 2021, 03:38   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dreadnought View Post
Problem is, Retroarch does not cover all the platforms, especially the more obscure ones. Even for Amiga you only have P-UAE, and last I checked it was a pain to use. Retropie is much better in this respect, but then I'd have to run Linux (I think?).

Any chance you could post your retroarch config, or send it somewhere? I'm having a deja vu from trying to set up my Retropie in similar fashion on RPi. It took literally months of experimenting with configs, since there was very little info out there. I'd rather not go through this again.

How did you get WinUAE to display properly btw?

I bought UMSA directly from Arcade Forge, they are based in Germany I think.
Apologies I must have missed your reply until now.

There are issues with Retroarch displaying correctly and I believe it was to do with the way modelines were generated ie static or dynamic.

Groovymame only works properly with Dynamic but this doesn't work natively with Retroarch and you have to change the resolution manually for Amiga or any console to display correctly as it cannot then do this automatically. If you select static modelines it works better for Retroarch to select the correct resolution.

As for WinUAE you should include the relevant modelines when generating so that these are 'selectable'. This thread helped me configure mine. I have tested the resolution on my CRT from my emulation setup and original Amiga hardware and it was indistinguishable:

http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/inde...topic=149599.0
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Old 02 February 2021, 17:52   #17
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The link posted appears to suggest otherwise in terms of DOS. Super resolution make achieving the required pixel density but I get what you're saying about 70khz... I wonder if custom modelines can overcome this?

I may consider having using this on standard monitor or laptop screen for DOSBOX:

[url]https://mattiasgustavsson.itch.io/dosbox-crt[/ur
He says 70Hz induced stutter is "small". I'd have to see it myself...perhaps it's true. Also, I mostly play non-arcade games in DOS, so maybe it wouldn't bother me.

There's also issue of letterboxing. On a real PC and VGA monitor the image is stretched. So perhaps here aspect ratio is distorted?

I might try it later anyway, see what happens.

This CRT shader is a nice find. Looks pretty good. Though, it has this monitor overlay which can be irritating. Also, I used to run Dosbox from Retroarch and use RA shaders in it - there's much bigger choice.

**************

About Retroarch on my crtemudriver rig: I managed to install appropriate modelines but my issue is more with RA not saving configs, or something. So, I can get it to display correctly in some SNES game (for example), then when I choose another it all goes to pieces and changes to some crazy resolution.

Another issue is Atari ST...I can't manage to get it to display properly. Nearly! But not 100%. I suppose something has to be changed in Hatari config but I have no clue what.

About Amiga: any chance you could post exactly what settings did you use to get it working? I looked at this link but it leads to a couple of threads with inconclusive answers and a heap of different settings...
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Old 03 February 2021, 02:14   #18
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Here is how to put the settings to put into VMMaker (I use this to generate modelines sd fine it easier):

(NOTE: Before you start make sure you select 640 x 480 resolution as that is what you will revert to otherwise you risk losing ability to view anything! I installed Teamviewer host so I could control PC in case I messed up modelines)

1) Select "Edit Settings"
2) Select "User modes" > "Edit..." (it should have ini file already for user_modes - super, if not just make a blank ini file to edit using this option) > add the following (just copy paste and then save and close):

## Amiga ##
320 x 256 @ 50.000000
320 x 512 @ 50.000000
640 x 256 @ 50.000000
640 x 512 @ 50.000000
360 x 288 @ 50.000000
360 x 576 @ 50.000000
720 x 288 @ 50.000000
720 x 576 @ 50.000000

## Desktop ##

640 x 480 @ 30.000000
640 x 480 @ 60.000000

3) Ensure "Mode table method" is set as "static"
4) Press "OK"
5) Select "Generate modes" followed by "Install modes" - the screen will go off and then on again.

This should now give you all the Amiga resolutions you need.

6) Now go to WinUAE and under "Display" make sure fullscreen resolution is set to one of the Amia ones listed above. On my TV I used 360 x 288 and it was perfect. For Hires I used 720 x 288.

8) Select centering options if needed (I don't need to on mine).

9) Line modes should be "normal"

10) Resolution option lower down can be either hires (normal) if using 720 x 288 or lores if using 360 x 288.

There is a WinUAE config which basically switches automatically between the different modes ie lores and hires but sometimes it gets it wrong lol.

Hopefully this helps get you going to enjoy the beauty of emulation at native resolution!

You can add more modelines if you wish eg for other consoles but for MAME you're better off using dynamic modelines using super resolutions...

Last edited by lesta_smsc; 03 February 2021 at 02:35.
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Old 03 February 2021, 21:35   #19
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Thanks a lot for this write up, much appreciated

But guess what, of course it still does not work

I can't understand it. My GroovyMAME works, also individual things in Retroarch too. So it means the whole crtemu thing is actually working.

But once I try some standalone emulator, its' a mess. I've tried many of these settings with WinUAE, and they look nearly great, but there are always some artifacts, either horizontal or vertical. You can see it when looking at text, or there's some glimmer during scrolling.

This is my Display from Winuae. Does it look okay to you?



I understand that after step 5) you choose 360 x 288 using Arcade OSD, then start up WinuAE?
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Old 03 February 2021, 23:43   #20
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First of all line mode should be single not double. Then at filter->no scaling.
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