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Picking the right Sophia - 800XL

Sophia 800XL VGA DVI RGB

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#1 adam6502 OFFLINE  

adam6502

    Combat Commando

  • 8 posts

Posted Mon Feb 25, 2019 8:46 PM

Evening guys,

 

I originally had a broadcast signal converter that I could plug all my 8 and 16 bit'ers into and fed nicely into the VGA port on a 25" Philips monitor but unfortunately DHL in my local country have made sure I'm never going to get it back after sending it for repair. The signal converter allowed lots of different resolutions and aspect ratios and was virtually limitless in the signals it would accept.

 

Here in Ecuador there are a huge amount of 15-17" CRT's and LCD's and virtually nothing with S-Video inputs or that will accept happily the PAL composite video that my 800XL is knocking out. I have tried a $20 S-Video/Composite to VGA converter which gave me nice multicoloured blurred text on everything that I plugged into it (including a Raspberry Pi). So I'm looking to connect to VGA, especially as I still prefer the look of CRT's for my vintage machines.

 

So, rather than going UAV now, I'm looking at getting a Sophia Board. I've tried reading through the Sophia threads but struggling to get a clear answer to some queries before I start hassling Simius with an order. I could do with hearing some experiences of other users findings.

 

Firstly, the Sophia Rev.B is shown as RGB. Is this directly compatible with VGA or would it feed into one of the Arcade RGB to VGA GBS8200 converters found on Ebay? I ask about this board in particular because I'm getting one for an Amstrad CPC 6128 and could probably build a switch to shift between the tow machines.

 

Secondly, regardless of this going VGA directly, or through an RGB converter, do I need to determine the resolution when I order the Sophia? Some of the monitors here are 1024 x768 and others 1280x1024. Are these the correct aspect ratios to be as similar as possible to old CRT TV's that the Atari's would have plugged into originally?

 

Thirdly, if I end up having to order the DVI version, presumably there's a 1280x1024 option available, will I get black bars on the left and right of my full HD monitor to keep the aspect ratio or is it more likely to stretch to the whole screen or black borders on all sides with a tiny image in the middle?

 

Lastly, is Simius based in Europe, or in the US, as I need to find out the best method of getting it to me without using couriers? USPS tracked service is ideal, but if it's coming from Europe then I'd need to get it shipped to the UK first to be forwarded by Royal Mail.

 

Apologies for the long post and multiple questions. If you've any further advice or help to offer (unused Sophia Board??) please let me know, and thank you in advance.

 

 







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Sophia, 800XL, VGA, DVI, RGB

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