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What did you buy today?.........

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Bought today (but won't arrive for some time)..

 

Retrotink 2x Pro

This is more for an experiment than anything.  I've already got a Framemeister (which I am 99% happy with; 150% happy with the picture quality!) which I use for all of my consoles in the living room.  This also includes my PSP Go in cradle via component video cables—and here is the issue.

 

The PSP Go running PSX games looks fine through the Framemeister, if a little soft compared with a Playstation.  However, I have noticed a bit of lag, which I suspect is due to the combined lag of the (1) Bluetooth PS3 controller, (2) TV (very low but still there), and (3) Framemeister (and possibly some inherent lag in the PSX emulation on PSP).  I normally perceive no lag with this setup on other consoles so I think the total lag of the PSP Go is just slightly above my threshold.

 

My plan is to use the Retrotink 2x Pro ("0" lag) to replace the Framemeister (1-1.5 frames of lag) here as doing so will therefore cut the total lag down slightly.  I've also read that the Retrotink is a bit quicker in switching between 240p and 480i than the Framemeister, so that would be of benefit for some PSX games.

Edited by newtmonkey
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I've fallen behind a little bit, so here's the past few weeks' things:

Pic_0713_354.thumb.jpg.f895eb8d0c8a67333f5967ad41ce0141.jpg

Kangokutou Mary Skelter 2 LE (already finished 2, maybe 60% through remake now), my first 2 Dreamcast games (Power Stone and Power Stone 2, both unplayed; need new Dreamcast controller because the one that came with mine has a problem with the analog stick), and my first NES game, 8 BIT XMAS 2017 (just arrived today; can't play, no hardware for it yet).

 

Not pictured: Dreamcast VMU (forgot to include it, too lazy to retake just for a VMU, and Steam games: Death Stranding, Crystar, Bloodstained (the first 2), Death end re;Quest. I think I'm going to skip the majority of the optional things in Death Stranding this time. Maybe I'll enjoy it more here than I did on the PS4, and since I get to use mouse + keyboard, at least I won't have to charge the PS4 controller twice each time I play the damn thing this time. I had to do that when I played the PS4 version for some reason.

Edited by Steven Pendleton
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4 hours ago, newtmonkey said:

Bought today (but won't arrive for some time)..

 

Retrotink 2x Pro

This is more for an experiment than anything.  I've already got a Framemeister (which I am 99% happy with; 150% happy with the picture quality!) which I use for all of my consoles in the living room.  This also includes my PSP Go in cradle via component video cables—and here is the issue.

 

The PSP Go running PSX games looks fine through the Framemeister, if a little soft compared with a Playstation.  However, I have noticed a bit of lag, which I suspect is due to the combined lag of the (1) Bluetooth PS3 controller, (2) TV (very low but still there), and (3) Framemeister (and possibly some inherent lag in the PSX emulation on PSP).  I normally perceive no lag with this setup on other consoles so I think the total lag of the PSP Go is just slightly above my threshold.

 

My plan is to use the Retrotink 2x Pro ("0" lag) to replace the Framemeister (1-1.5 frames of lag) here as doing so will therefore cut the total lag down slightly.  I've also read that the Retrotink is a bit quicker in switching between 240p and 480i than the Framemeister, so that would be of benefit for some PSX games.

I've not had any problems with lag using my PSP go + dock + DS3 + OSSC into my PC monitor playing PS1 games, but my monitor has 5ms response time and I am relatively insensitive to input lag anyway. PS1 games are a bit soft, though; I tested PS1 Tales of Phantasia on the go and then put the real disc in my PS2 to compare and the PS2 looks way better. The thing I've mostly had problems with is trying to figure out the timings for it since I really have no idea what timings I should be using, especially for PS1 games.

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@Steven Pendleton

I suspect I will get similar results as you with the Retrotink, as the OSSC also has no added input lag versus the 1-1.5 frames added by the Framemeister.  I really do think it's just a matter of the total input lag being ever so slightly above my threshold, as I remember finding twitchy action games to be almost unplayable using the the PSP go+dock+DS3+Framemeister combination with my previous TV, which had a lot of lag.

 

PSX games on the PSP go do look quite soft, though I guess it's the best one can expect from such a small device (I doubt they had much room or budget for quality video components in there!).

 

I was actually tempted to just get an OSSC since it's not that much more expensive than the Retrotink 2x Pro, but I also didn't want to bother with setting timings, etc.  The Framemeister has a lot of options, but with the latest firmware it's very nearly a "plug-and-play" device like the Retrotink.

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2 minutes ago, newtmonkey said:

@Steven Pendleton

I suspect I will get similar results as you with the Retrotink, as the OSSC also has no added input lag versus the 1-1.5 frames added by the Framemeister.  I really do think it's just a matter of the total input lag being ever so slightly above my threshold, as I remember finding twitchy action games to be almost unplayable using the the PSP go+dock+DS3+Framemeister combination with my previous TV, which had a lot of lag.

 

PSX games on the PSP go do look quite soft, though I guess it's the best one can expect from such a small device (I doubt they had much room or budget for quality video components in there!).

 

I was actually tempted to just get an OSSC since it's not that much more expensive than the Retrotink 2x Pro, but I also didn't want to bother with setting timings, etc.  The Framemeister has a lot of options, but with the latest firmware it's very nearly a "plug-and-play" device like the Retrotink.

The OSSC is annoying to set up, but it's very nice once it's properly configured, although I'm not entirely sure about how to best set up the PSP for it considering the PS1 games run in a different resolution than the PSP games. I don't know if there are better PSP cables than the official Sony ones, though, and I'm glad I bought them when I had the chance. I had to get the dock used, unfortunately, and I paid like 9000 yen for it last summer or something. I never thought it would get this expensive and hard to find, and I wish I'd bought it when I saw it in the USA for $20 new at the PX at Beaufort...

 

Still, at this point, I think it's best that you skipped the OSSC because the OSSC Pro is supposed to be releasing later this year. There is still a place for the regular OSSC, but you might as well wait to see the features and price of the Pro model first before deciding.

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I've thought about getting a Retrotink Pro, but since I already have a Framemeister and and OSSC, it seems to be redundant. I am not selling the former any time soon, and the latter really works well for the SSDS3. I know mileage may vary with that last one because it depends on the display.

 

That said, it seems like the Retrotink Pro is really good for someone that doesn't have a solution already and wants minimal fuss. Has to be light years better than those cheap HDMI plug and play solutions.

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I really enjoy the no-fuss operation and picture quality of the Framemeister. I bought it fully expecting to be disappointed but when it arrived and I got my Megadrive with RGB cable hooked up, I was blown away.  I really could not believe how good it looked.  I am still shocked at the image quality every time I use it, two and half years later!

 

I think, however, for this particular application (docked PSP Go playing PSX games) I'd be willing to sacrifice some sharpness for less lag and (possibly) a quicker 240p<>480i transition.  Hopefully the Retrotink will deliver here!

Edited by newtmonkey

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In preparation for the 5200 that I bought from Crossbow, I ordered the 5200 PS from eBay and refurbished controllers from Best (along with extra PS for 2600 and 800XL). The 5200 is arriving later today.

IMG_0982.jpeg

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7 hours ago, socrates63 said:

In preparation for the 5200 that I bought from Crossbow, I ordered the 5200 PS from eBay and refurbished controllers from Best (along with extra PS for 2600 and 800XL). The 5200 is arriving later today.

IMG_0982.jpeg

Go ahead and order one of these,  since the 5200 controllers are ass, even refurbished. 

 

https://www.ebay.ie/itm/274188778409

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36 minutes ago, 4300 said:

Go ahead and order one of these,  since the 5200 controllers are ass, even refurbished. 

 

https://www.ebay.ie/itm/274188778409

Thanks for the link. I've been trying to research controller options for the 5200 having read that the Atari controllers are horrible (reliability issues aside).

 

Edit: I'm going to order this. It'll be interesting trying out adapter with the controllers I already have. Before I knew about this adapter, I was thinking about getting the 5200 customer gamepad on eBay but that's $125.

Edited by socrates63

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55 minutes ago, socrates63 said:

Thanks for the link. I've been trying to research controller options for the 5200 having read that the Atari controllers are horrible (reliability issues aside).

 

Edit: I'm going to order this. It'll be interesting trying out adapter with the controllers I already have. Before I knew about this adapter, I was thinking about getting the 5200 customer gamepad on eBay but that's $125.

This is a good option and works well. I use the genesis arcade stick with mine and couldn't be happier.  I could never get used to the 5200's non centering analog stick and the side buttons cramp your hands when playing any kind of button masher. 

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On 6/29/2020 at 9:14 AM, Moe said:

Local outdoor flea market picks.  $25 for the lot  (c64 top case and keyboard only, not a full computer)

 

Gotta love the vintage calculators. Those are built to last forever. Only thing to go wrong is possibly the quintessential dried-out capacitors and dirty contacts. But all can be fixed super easy. Even the snappy-click bubble-style keys like on Texas Instruments red-LED calcs.

 

I recently found one of my Unitrex mini-handys I had in the 1st and 2nd grades! A real blast of nostalgia!

 

 

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What did I buy today?

 

1- About 60 or so SIMMS of varying sizes for vintage PCs from the 486 era. Found a place selling "new" SIMMS for just a few bucks each. They're new PCBs with recycled/reclaimed or NOS chips. I don't have a problem with RR chips because they've been thoroughly tested in the field and by this vendor. Most of them come from e-waste and business systems which means they would have had a short cycle life of a only a few years usage.

 

2- Some replacement displays for a highly sentimental handheld from 1980. Never ever EVER thought I'd see the day! Instead I had been acquiring spare units and keeping them for their still-working displays. A potentially untenable situation because of the high failure rate. Near 100% I'm told. Now I can fix those or future-proof them and give them away for postage. Very cool!

 

3- A bulk box of 30 PowerStacker/QuickChip AMD 5x86 upgrade processors. They're basically 486 processors with a 16K writeback cache and running at 4x bus speed. A real DX4-133 if you will. They're even 5v compatible so they work in more of the older motherboards.

 

4- A couple of vintage Apple II peripheral manuals.

 

5- Some vintage astronomy software. Of no interest to anyone here I'm sure!

Edited by Keatah
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I also got myself a RetroTink 2X Pro; showed up a few days back. Since I "upgraded" to a 42" plasma in the game room and put the 25" CRT in storage, I've been missing my retro consoles. I've been emulating in the interim via PC, RetroPie, and Wii, but it's nice to be able to use original hardware again. I've only tested with my NES and Genesis/Sega CD so far with Component A/V, but it's worlds better through the RetroTink than hooking it up to the TV directly. Going to have to invest in some better cables soon, and then some A/V mods for the older stuff. 

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Various TRS-80, Apple II, IBM case badges. Along with some Western Digital, Samsung, Kingston, Nvidia, and Intel go-faster stickers. I already tested the stickers and indeed my PC runs about 5% faster when they're used.

 

A couple of Rand McNally maps of the moon. Had fun with those back in the day planning Lunar Lander missions!

 

Some vintage astronomy books. Spare parts for my workshop parts bins.

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As I was walking home from seeing the Sonic movie last week, I stopped by the game store in Azabu Juuban and they just happened to have a Dreamcast controller for 1480 yen or something, so I bought it to replace the weird one that came with my Dreamcast.

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Somehow, I managed to get the Shin Megami Tensei III HD limited edition from Amazon. Sadly, it's the PS4 version and not the Switch version, but I suppose I shouldn't complain since it insta-sold out earlier at all other stores. Strange that Amazon didn't even have it available until about an hour ago. Maybe I'll get the Switch version instead and cancel the PS4 version if I get the chance.

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I had a few homebrew's arrive.  Going to spend a lot of time on the Atari's this weekend. 😄

 

Homebrew.thumb.jpg.f7c1e14f8f95bbc78d72c33ef53d5536.jpg

 

 

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9 hours ago, tep392 said:

I had a few homebrew's arrive.  Going to spend a lot of time on the Atari's this weekend. 😄

 

Homebrew.thumb.jpg.f7c1e14f8f95bbc78d72c33ef53d5536.jpg

 

 

Wow! Each one of those is great. I have them all. Your going to love Missile Control TB. You’ll never go back to the original version.
Really good pickups.👍

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Couple of fun things arrived today:

 

RetroTINK-2X Pro

Really excellent little device for the price!  I already have a Framemeister, but bought the RetroTINK sort of as an experiment as I didn't care for how the Framemeister works with the PSP Go (the added lag of the Framemeister, though slight, was enough to make the overall lag of the Dual Shock 3, TV, and possibly PSX emulator in the PSP noticeable).  I also felt that the excellent image quality of the Framemeister did no favors to the poor video quality of the PSP Go itself, though switching to 480p helped a lot by hiding the worst aspects of the video.  Finally, the Framemeister is notoriously poor at handling resolution switches, which is a problem in plenty of good PSX games which run in 240p but switch to 480i when displaying a menu.

 

I suspected that the RetroTINK might be a better solution in this case, due to 0 added lag, an even softer picture, and its snappy handling of resolution switches... and indeed that is the case!  The lack of added lag from the RetroTINK brings the overall lag down to a level where I can't notice it (and I am pretty susceptible to lag), the picture quality is excellent, and the resolution switching—while not perfect—is MUCH quicker.  It's possible I could have tweaked the Framemeister video settings to get the image soft enough to hide the defects but sharp enough to not be a blurry mess, but the RetroTINK "just works" (though I do have to boost the gamma when using scanlines).

 

Added bonus: Composite video sources look fantastic on the RetroTINK!  I was never 100% happy with how the Framemeister handles composite video, and found that I had to reduce the saturation setting to a level nearly close to B&W to avoid overly saturated colors.  PC Engine through the RetroTINK looks absolutely clean and colorful, it's really something else!

 

I've got two issues with the RetroTINK stopping it from perfection in my eyes, though neither might be possible as the unit is simply a line doubler:

  1. A gamma boost setting would be wonderful, as enabling scanlines makes the image VERY dark.  You can compensate for this with your TV of course, but then you'd need to keep changing the settings on the TV from device to device.
  2. Aspect ratio correction.  The image is a bit narrow, but not bad.  I don't think this is possible at all with a line doubler (I suppose you would need a frame buffer?), but there's really no way to correct this on a TV (my TV has extensive aspect ratio options, but can do nothing with it).

 

8bitdo SN30 2.4G controller

[EDIT] It turns out this is not good at all!  The right directional requires a bit more force to make contact, which wasn't noticeable at first as I was testing by playing Super Mario Bros.  However, I switched to an RPG (Breath of Fire) where you are constantly rolling your thumb over the pad to move in the four cardinal directions, and I noticed right away that the right directional requires more of a push to make contact.  I tried swapping out the d-pad and contact pad from a known working controller, but encountered the same issue, so it's likely a problem with the circuit board itself.

 

With this, I think I am done with 8bitdo.  Their BT Famicom controller is very bad with directionals, I found their BT SFC controller to also have directional issues as well as bizarre pairing problems, and now this.  Although their M30 2.4G Megadrive controller is excellent, that's 1 for 4 (and there is an even better 2.4G Megadrive controller in the form of the Krikzz controller).  Someone please make a nice 2.4G SNES/SFC controller!!

 

Edited by newtmonkey
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So,   I bought a Wii U at the pawn shop a while back (represented here by the gamepad), controllers off of ebay (1 came in just today), and some games from trips to 3 pawn shops,  2 of them today...I needed some Wii U games to test my Wii U but there's not much of a selection in town (lots of Skylanders, which doesn't seem fun to me, but maybe someone knows...Those games are everywhere)...And as much as I've mostly hated modern gaming for doing everything wrong*.  I've decided to lower my expectations, like way lower, and buy PS3 games while they're dirt cheap.   Most were $4, or 3 for $11...FWIW, PS2 games at the pawn shop were buy 2 get 2 free, but alas, I found only 1 game I was even curious about, despite a huge selection.  I think it's because I bought most of my PS2 games a long time ago and have lots of good ones :)  I also found a light up Frisbee @ Big Lots!, which will go nicely with the TRON light up Frisbee I already have.  It was only $4 on clearance and they give me an extra 15% off for being a delivery driver so, Heck I may buy another one of a different color...Then me and some friends can go play Frisbee at night!  And the GBA Advance SP up top is a 101 so I snagged that for rebuild in a cool color shell later ($30 which is a deal despite being scratched to hell)...Also some various other games (Wordtris for SNES, Geometry Wars: Galaxies for DS, Bugs Bunny Crazy Castle 2 for GB, and Automobili Lamborghini for N64)...I was kind of happy one pawn shop even had Atari games!  But also the usual problem, which is way too many sports games.  I told him he needs to start selling his sports games by the pound so nobody will get excited when they see Genesis, SNES, NES, and even Game Boy games only to discover they are all sports (hummmpph!)...For the record he agreed with me and said at least they no longer take in any sports games...

 

PS That copy of Splatoon is brand new, still sealed! (I paid $10)...

 

011.thumb.JPG.41264fdb2b6e7164382e3aafbbde6263.JPG

 

*Quick rant (ignore if you want haha).   Aside from indie games and pinball, I've been disappointed time and time again by modern games (PS3 and up), so I'd basically quit even trying.  2 quick examples: I had a game where you play soccer but with cars (it was called Supersonic Acrobatic Rocket-Powered Battle-Cars and the tutorial was so long I got burned out, after mastering one of the special moves necessary to make your car go faster off the line(which is a dumb idea right there) I tried playing against some teenagers online and their cars seemed faster than mine unless it was some trick...Long story short, they took a good idea and ruined it (Special Moves, complicated control) for no reason, then Twisted Metal came out for PS3, and I was sure it would save modern gaming for me.  I Love all the other Twisted Metal Games, so  I took extra days off, pre-ordered the game, and popped it in and was immediately disappointed since you could no longer control the car with the  D_PAD LIKE IN EVERY OTHER TWISTED METAL GAME !   To this day I've never played it because I can't control the car...I'm So Pissed!  Good Idea RUINED!  So,...Even though Atari and NES games are more fun than any modern system game 9 times out of 10,  I jumped in again...Who knows?, maybe with some booze and low expectations...

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