Personal computing discussed

Moderator: Hoser

 
ozzuneoj
Gerbil Elite
Posts: 518
Joined: Tue Jan 21, 2014 1:27 pm

Re: Retro console gaming

Sun Oct 01, 2017 2:22 pm

derFunkenstein wrote:
Yeah, on a "real" PC, there's a big difference. I basically can't tell the difference from an input standpoint between real hardware on a CRT and my PC on my monitor. It's an IPS panel and so there's ghosting, but there's not any input lag. But the RPi on the same display I can definitely feel a difference.

Maybe a NUC is the solution to my problem. When my TV detects it's connected to a PC, all the post-processing disappears and it turns out it's super fast. at worst, one frame of difference. The way I measure is hardly scientific, though - my iPhone recording 720p60 with both the controller and the TV in the frame. Too bad I ebayed the parts of my Skylake build when I caught retro fever, because that's the machine I should be using for retro gaming, oddly enough.

BTW if you need a retro-style PC controller, the Hori Fighting Commander has the Sega Genesis/Saturn-style six face buttons and then four shoulder buttons. The outermost face buttons are mapped to R1 and R2, and a hardware switch on the top of the unit lets you decide how the shoulder buttons are mapped. Your options are:

L1, L2, R1, R2
L3, R3, L1, L2

The second option, if you don't mind fiddling with emulator mappings, lets you have 11 total input buttons (counting select/start and the PS button). It's also got a switch to let you switch between PS3, PS4, and PC modes (PC mode works with an Xbox 360, too, because it's an Xbox 360-style XInput device). For systems without analog sticks, it's a great solution. I love mine.


That does look like a really nice controller for 2D games. I like it!
Desktop - i5 2500K@4.5Ghz - MSI P67A-G43 - 16GB DDR3-2133 - PNY GTX 970
HTPC - i7 4790 - Asus B85 - 8GB DDR3-1600 - EVGA GTX 1050 Ti
Selling lots of cool PC stuff on Mercari. Use code VBGQMM for a $10 sign up credit!
 
NTMBK
Gerbil Team Leader
Posts: 239
Joined: Sat Dec 21, 2013 11:21 am

Re: Retro console gaming

Tue Oct 17, 2017 5:44 am

NTMBK wrote:
TRB wrote:
This day and age playing old games is hard due to all the old school hardware and wires but this guy above has got it right, Emulators are the way forward


Screw emulators, bring on the FPGAs! The RetroUSB AVS and Analogue NT Mini both clone the entire NES/Famicom hardware with an FPGA, so they can get absolutely perfect hardware-accurate results, but with built in HDMI output.

I look forward to the day when an FPGA powerful enough to run SNES and Mega Drive level systems is affordable to consumers. A single FPGA system capable of emulating any 8/16 bit system with 100% accuracy would be my dream.


Well shucks, looks like they went and did it. https://www.analogue.co/pages/super-nt/ And it's substantially cheaper than the Analogue Nt.
 
Usacomp2k3
Gerbil God
Posts: 21686
Joined: Thu Apr 01, 2004 4:53 pm
Location: Orlando, FL
Contact:

Re: Retro console gaming

Tue Oct 17, 2017 6:55 am

NTMBK wrote:
Well shucks, looks like they went and did it. https://www.analogue.co/pages/super-nt/ And it's substantially cheaper than the Analogue Nt.

Awesome. Price on the old NT is kinda ridiculous. I wonder how hard it would be to combine the NES & SNES into a single box. Even a hardware switch between the 2 would be fine, as long as their was a single power in and video out.
 
derFunkenstein
Gold subscriber
Gerbil God
Topic Author
Posts: 23836
Joined: Fri Feb 21, 2003 9:13 pm
Location: Comin' to you directly from the Mothership

Re: Retro console gaming

Tue Oct 17, 2017 7:54 am

Usacomp2k3 wrote:
NTMBK wrote:
Well shucks, looks like they went and did it. https://www.analogue.co/pages/super-nt/ And it's substantially cheaper than the Analogue Nt.

Awesome. Price on the old NT is kinda ridiculous. I wonder how hard it would be to combine the NES & SNES into a single box. Even a hardware switch between the 2 would be fine, as long as their was a single power in and video out.

There are clones that play SNES/NES/Genesis (like the Retron 3 and Super Retro Trio) but they use low-quality components and aren't particularly accurate.

OTOH, the Super NT has an SD slot. If it goes the way of the Analog NT Mini, it'll get "unofficial" firmwares from the official FPGA programmer (who goes by kevtris) and I would expect to see NES, SNES, Genesis and PC Engine ROM support, at a minimum. This is awesome.

Too bad it's not coming until February.
I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.
 
derFunkenstein
Gold subscriber
Gerbil God
Topic Author
Posts: 23836
Joined: Fri Feb 21, 2003 9:13 pm
Location: Comin' to you directly from the Mothership

Re: Retro console gaming

Thu Oct 19, 2017 6:58 am

Stopped by Walmart last night and they just happened to have an SNES Classic still in the case. They don't anymore, of course, because I brought it home with me. But now I'm at a crossroads:

Do I want to hack it full of ROMs or flip it on eBay for ~50% markup?
I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.
 
bthylafh
Grand Gerbil Poohbah
Posts: 3906
Joined: Mon Dec 29, 2003 11:55 pm
Location: Southwest Missouri, USA

Re: Retro console gaming

Thu Oct 19, 2017 7:06 am

Don't be that guy. Put a bunch of ROMs on it and enjoy.
Hakkaa päälle!
i7-8700K|Asus Z-370 Pro|32GB DDR4|Asus Radeon RX-580|Samsung 960 EVO 1TB|1988 Model M||Logitech MX 518 & F310|Samsung C24FG70|Dell 2209WA|ATH-M50x|Asus Xonar DX
 
derFunkenstein
Gold subscriber
Gerbil God
Topic Author
Posts: 23836
Joined: Fri Feb 21, 2003 9:13 pm
Location: Comin' to you directly from the Mothership

Re: Retro console gaming

Thu Oct 19, 2017 7:31 am

bthylafh wrote:
Don't be that guy. Put a bunch of ROMs on it and enjoy.

That's how I've been leaning. It's got around 300MB of free space, from what I've read, which is plenty for 100+ extra SNES/NES/Genesis games.

edit: this is going to accelerate my need for an HDMI-equipped monitor for retro gaming.
I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.
 
Vhalidictes
Gold subscriber
Gerbil Jedi
Posts: 1668
Joined: Fri Jan 07, 2005 2:32 pm
Location: Paragon City, RI

Re: Retro console gaming

Thu Oct 19, 2017 10:50 am

derFunkenstein wrote:
This is going to accelerate my need for an HDMI-equipped monitor for retro gaming.


derFunkenstein, wouldn't a nice small television be a better idea for this use case than a PC monitor?
 
derFunkenstein
Gold subscriber
Gerbil God
Topic Author
Posts: 23836
Joined: Fri Feb 21, 2003 9:13 pm
Location: Comin' to you directly from the Mothership

Re: Retro console gaming

Thu Oct 19, 2017 10:54 am

Vhalidictes wrote:
derFunkenstein wrote:
This is going to accelerate my need for an HDMI-equipped monitor for retro gaming.


derFunkenstein, wouldn't a nice small television be a better idea for this use case than a PC monitor?

I was thinking of a 1080p 27" monitor due to what should be lower input latency. I've got the SNES Classic connected to my PC monitor right now and the input latency is basically undetectable. I attached it to my main TV and the latency is much more pronounced.
I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.
 
Vhalidictes
Gold subscriber
Gerbil Jedi
Posts: 1668
Joined: Fri Jan 07, 2005 2:32 pm
Location: Paragon City, RI

Re: Retro console gaming

Thu Oct 19, 2017 11:02 am

derFunkenstein wrote:
I was thinking of a 1080p 27" monitor due to what should be lower input latency. I've got the SNES Classic connected to my PC monitor right now and the input latency is basically undetectable. I attached it to my main TV and the latency is much more pronounced.


Uh oh. You know, it suddenly occurs to me that maybe the issues my son is having learning to play Sonic the Hedgehog might have a lot to do with the $50 special '1080p inputs but it really is upscaling 720p' 20" television we hooked up to the game machine. Yeah... lag testing... need to...
 
derFunkenstein
Gold subscriber
Gerbil God
Topic Author
Posts: 23836
Joined: Fri Feb 21, 2003 9:13 pm
Location: Comin' to you directly from the Mothership

Re: Retro console gaming

Fri Oct 20, 2017 12:47 pm

Just ordered one of these Viewsonic monitors and a composite/S-Video to VGA converters. I think together they have everything I think I need to marry old-school and new-school gaming:

HDMI - which I have a 4-port switch
VGA - to convert the old-school signals
1/8" audio in
1/8" audio out (to my retired Visio 24" soundbar)

It should have low latency, plus it has all the audio routing I need to get my soundbar working. The manual seems to imply that I can mush the VGA into a 4:3 area and keep the HDMI like normal.

Yes there will be a little ghosting, but that doesn't bug me. I can even dig out my VGA box for the Dreamcast again, since the picture should be adjustable enough to mitigate any overscan issues. A handful of my games aren't compatible with it, so depending on what S-Video looks like I might skip it.

SNES classic and RPi can share the HDMI for now, and other consoles can stay on my S-Video switch.
I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.
 
derFunkenstein
Gold subscriber
Gerbil God
Topic Author
Posts: 23836
Joined: Fri Feb 21, 2003 9:13 pm
Location: Comin' to you directly from the Mothership

Re: Retro console gaming

Sun Oct 22, 2017 3:02 pm

OK so some thoughts on the SNES Classic Mini:

* Emulation quality is far better than SNES9x-2010 on the RetroPie. Probably as good as SNES9x-next core, but running at full speed all the time.
* The controllers are excellent, but the cords are still too short. Fortunately thanks to the NES Classic being even worse in this regard, extensions are cheap and plentiful.
* The UI and emulation features are easy to use. Only slight downfall is that getting back to the menu requires a reset. Easy to fix with a hack mod.
* Hacking the thing is braindead-easy. The driver is signed so installing it was simple, using the Hakchi2 software was simple, and adding games is a snap.
* For the handful of games that could really use it (mostly Enix games and Earthworm Jim 2, that I've found so far), RetroArch integrates seamlessly.
* There are really only around 60 games in the SNES library that I really want to play. Maybe that's being a Sega kid, but I had plenty of room for the SNES games I wanted.

tl;dr: Nintendo obviously cares about the experience, and it's easy to augment it with ROMs. Compare that with the Genesis Flashback, and Sega should be embarrassed that their log is on that thing. The first round of reviews from late July was universally disappointing, but AtGames said they sent "faulty" units. The second round of reviews (complete with a second NDA that lifted 10/13) were mostly equally harsh. The emulation is choppy, the sound is not accurate, and it's depressing, honestly. Emulating the console and its add-ons is basically a solved problem on the PC, and even little ARM-based PCs like the RPi3 do a great job. It's sad to see those emulators do so poorly on AtGames' device.

https://www.polygon.com/2017/10/13/1605 ... -hd-review
https://kotaku.com/sega-genesis-flashba ... 1819380165

And this third one I'm kind of hesitant to link. The guy that runs Armchair Arcade is honest in the review that he does consulting for AtGames, but even then I feel like he's being extremely lenient. The value of this one is some videos of the emulation quality. It's irritating to me to hear the music in Sonic 1 is out of tune, tinny, and not instrumented correctly, and he makes no mention. At least he provided the videos.
http://armchairarcade.com/perspectives/ ... back-2017/
I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.
 
The Egg
Gold subscriber
Minister of Gerbil Affairs
Posts: 2236
Joined: Sun Apr 06, 2008 4:46 pm

Re: Retro console gaming

Sun Oct 22, 2017 4:33 pm

Can either the SNES Classic or the Super Nt do different systems, such as NES, Genesis, SMS? I'm kinda hoping to cover the entire 8-bit and 16-bit eras with one device, but I want the accuracy and UI to be top-notch.


Edit: Upon further inspection, I may have misunderstood the functionality of the Super Nt. Is it able to run ROMs, or just cartridges?
 
bthylafh
Grand Gerbil Poohbah
Posts: 3906
Joined: Mon Dec 29, 2003 11:55 pm
Location: Southwest Missouri, USA

Re: Retro console gaming

Sun Oct 22, 2017 4:38 pm

You're going to have to deal with accuracy compromises to some extent regardless - the only compromise-free SNES emulator (Higan/bsnes) really wants an i5-2500K at minimum to get good frame rates. That said, the SNES Classic can be jailbroken and RetroArch installed on it with several emulators.
Hakkaa päälle!
i7-8700K|Asus Z-370 Pro|32GB DDR4|Asus Radeon RX-580|Samsung 960 EVO 1TB|1988 Model M||Logitech MX 518 & F310|Samsung C24FG70|Dell 2209WA|ATH-M50x|Asus Xonar DX
 
derFunkenstein
Gold subscriber
Gerbil God
Topic Author
Posts: 23836
Joined: Fri Feb 21, 2003 9:13 pm
Location: Comin' to you directly from the Mothership

Re: Retro console gaming

Mon Oct 23, 2017 12:30 pm

The Egg wrote:
Can either the SNES Classic or the Super Nt do different systems, such as NES, Genesis, SMS? I'm kinda hoping to cover the entire 8-bit and 16-bit eras with one device, but I want the accuracy and UI to be top-notch.


Edit: Upon further inspection, I may have misunderstood the functionality of the Super Nt. Is it able to run ROMs, or just cartridges?

The Super Nt is for cartridges, but the Nt Mini (an NES clone based on a less-complex FPGA) got a "jailbroken" firmware shortly after release that added support for tons of other consoles. kevtris has stayed quiet so far, but I'm speculating that he'll make use of that Cyclone V to program other cores for other systems and add SD card ROM loading after the Super Nt ships. 8-bit cores and jailbroken firmware for the Analogue Nt Mini were available like 3 weeks after launch. Hoping for a Genesis core to arrive in similarly short order.

The SNES is a special case because so many carts used chips for enhancements. There are four different NEC chips in the "DSP" family (Mario Kart uses DSP-1 for example), two different SuperFX chips, and several others that made their way into very popular games. Whether those can be simulated by the FPGA while it's already running an SNES core is something I can only guess.
I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.
 
SonicSilicon
Gerbil First Class
Posts: 164
Joined: Fri Jul 30, 2004 8:02 am

Re: Retro console gaming

Mon Oct 23, 2017 2:49 pm

derFunkenstein wrote:
* The UI and emulation features are easy to use. Only slight downfall is that getting back to the menu requires a reset. Easy to fix with a hack mod.

No need for a hack. Not only does the Wii Classic Controller Pro work with they SNES Classic, we discovered last night that the Home button is recognized by the OS and brings up the menu. The downside is that the cord is even shorter than the provided retro gamepads.
 
derFunkenstein
Gold subscriber
Gerbil God
Topic Author
Posts: 23836
Joined: Fri Feb 21, 2003 9:13 pm
Location: Comin' to you directly from the Mothership

Re: Retro console gaming

Mon Oct 23, 2017 6:51 pm

Interesting. I bought extension cords for mine so the length isn't a big deal. I wonder why they didn't add a menu button in the first place, then? Doesn't matter, I have already done what I've done and there are around 200 games on the system now (Genesis, TurboGrafx 16, and NES included)

The menu wasn't really made for a collection that big, but you'll get the hang of it soon enough. :lol:

edit: after TONS of futzing, I'll give anybody interested in hacking the SNES Classic a couple hints:

* Don't use the web installer unless you're running your PC with LUA off. The working directory is in your Documents path, and running as admin changes that.
* Do use the portable version, and run as admin. Otherwise the app never detects that the console is booted and ready to go, even with the drivers installed.

The latest version of hakchi2 (2.21e as of this post) does a great job filling in a lot of the blanks, like getting the game name right, and detecting whether you're adding a game that doesn't run with the built-in emulator (canoe). I'm using canoe wherever possible, and only like 3 of the SNES games I've added were detected as incompatible - Earthworm Jim 2, Illusion of Gaia, and Super Street Fighter II.
I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.
 
derFunkenstein
Gold subscriber
Gerbil God
Topic Author
Posts: 23836
Joined: Fri Feb 21, 2003 9:13 pm
Location: Comin' to you directly from the Mothership

Re: Retro console gaming

Sat Oct 28, 2017 8:49 pm

derFunkenstein wrote:
Just ordered one of these Viewsonic monitors and a composite/S-Video to VGA converters. I think together they have everything I think I need to marry old-school and new-school gaming:

HDMI - which I have a 4-port switch
VGA - to convert the old-school signals
1/8" audio in
1/8" audio out (to my retired Visio 24" soundbar)

It should have low latency, plus it has all the audio routing I need to get my soundbar working. The manual seems to imply that I can mush the VGA into a 4:3 area and keep the HDMI like normal.

Yes there will be a little ghosting, but that doesn't bug me. I can even dig out my VGA box for the Dreamcast again, since the picture should be adjustable enough to mitigate any overscan issues. A handful of my games aren't compatible with it, so depending on what S-Video looks like I might skip it.

SNES classic and RPi can share the HDMI for now, and other consoles can stay on my S-Video switch.

Reporting back to say this was a *great* decision. My Dreamcast and Saturn look decent on S-Video, and the Dreamcast VGA cable (which most games can use, but not all) looks great, if 640x480 anything can be "great". On the HDMI side, the SNES Classic (which now has around 150 SNES ROMs) and Lakka-equipped RPi (which has lots of other consoles) look as good as can possibly be and the lag is basically completely gone. It's low enough that I cannot feel it in fast-paced platformers like Sonic 3 & Knuckles and fighting games like SF2 Turbo.

Soundbar looks a little stupid since it's apparently much wider than I remember - wider than the 30" cabinet. It was probably 34 or 36 inches instead of 24. :lol:
I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.
 
Redocbew
Gold subscriber
Graphmaster Gerbil
Posts: 1349
Joined: Sat Mar 15, 2014 11:44 am

Re: Retro console gaming

Sat Oct 28, 2017 11:12 pm

derFunkenstein wrote:
if 640x480 anything can be "great".


Every time I see a screenshot from an old game I think "Why'd they scale it down? Oh, wait...". Glad you got a setup which works well. :P
Do not meddle in the affairs of archers, for they are subtle and you won't hear them coming.

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 11 guests