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3 hours ago, Steven Pendleton said:

https://www.amazon.co.jp/PCエンジン-コアグラフィックス-mini-輸入版-欧州/dp/B07QD9GMLM/ref=dp_ob_title_vg?th=1

 

Here is CoreGrafx mini for those of you who might want it. I think that maybe international shipping MIGHT be suspended. Japan Post I think no longer does it, but maybe Amazon Japan still does. Amazon USA does not ship here right now, though.

 

I bought that same one a few days ago at amazon japan.  They just shipped it last night for delivery next week. I had no issues and still says available. 

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1 hour ago, RetrogamerX said:

 

I bought that same one a few days ago at amazon japan.  They just shipped it last night for delivery next week. I had no issues and still says available. 

Oh, good. I think it might just be Japan Post, then. You'll get it fast. Japan does not mess around when it comes to getting people their mail!

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Yeah, I noticed the reshell as well. You can't fool me, 8BitDo. A nice attempt, but moving a single button isn't good enough!
 
I've heard that the Retro-Bit 2.4GHz Saturn and Genesis controllers do actually work with the PC Engine mini, but you have to put the controller in some sort of compatibility mode or switch the d-pad to analog stick mode or something like that. I have not tried it, though. Even though I love my 2.4GHz Saturn and Genesis controllers (Saturn controller is the single best controller ever created aside from mouse + keyboard and I have never even played a Saturn!), I don't think I'd enjoy playing PC Engine games with a Saturn controller.
 
Still, the PC Engine mini controller's cord is actually so long that it gets in the way and is super annoying since I use the thing at my desk. I stretched it out and it will actually go through the roof while the controller is on the floor!
 
Okay, I tried it, and using the Saturn controller is not bad! The controller's home button works properly so you don't have to press Run + Select to open the in-game menu. It is kind of odd to play PC Engine games with a Saturn controller, but the Saturn controller is so good that after only a few minutes I didn't even notice it! The Genesis controller is probably equally enjoyable, but I have that one put away in its fancy box (which gets totally covered in fingerprints extremely easily, by the way) right now so I didn't test it. They are essentially identical, though. You can swap the mappings of the A and B buttons. Default is A = I and B = II, but this can be reversed if you want. I recommend that anyone who has either the Genesis or Saturn wireless controller should try them.
Yeah, RetroBit made licensed controllers for the Genesis Mini and the PCE/CG/TG16 Mini are from the same people as the Genesis Mini. It stands to reason that their controllers would be compatible when others are not.

Well, that's at least one wireless solution! :)

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What the heck is this?!
244ff40bc569e4a54534655e3536f21a.jpg

Albert Beckmann just got one and sent me this pic in Facebook Messenger. It's not like the dental equipment thing using Atari Jaguar console/cartridge shells since this controller is a bit wider than a real PCE controller. It looks like someone made a mold for this and specifically paid homage to the PC Engine!

He pointed out that there is another on German eBay:
https://www.ebay.de/itm/223948360355
5570b7a8aa2cb9ad8c8bf2d2766ab70e.jpg

Best I can tell is that it's a fancy power strip with EMI/RFI filtering and some security features. I think you can lock the plugs into it and then use the controller to turn them on or off. The controller has a combination set by DIP switches on the back and can be disconnected to prevent anyone from connecting/disconnecting equipment. The unit's plug looks like it also has screw holes and stuff for securing it to a power source.

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10 hours ago, CZroe said:

Yeah, RetroBit made licensed controllers for the Genesis Mini and the PCE/CG/TG16 Mini are from the same people as the Genesis Mini. It stands to reason that their controllers would be compatible when others are not.

Well, that's at least one wireless solution! :)

Yeah, but you still have to put the controllers in an alternate mode to do it and it doesn't stay that way so you have to do it every time you turn the PC Engine mini on. Still, better than nothing if you want wireless, and most likely will have better d-pads than the 8BitDo controllers. No turbo on the Genesis and Saturn controllers, of course.

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SuperGrafx games get!!

 

Only 2 more to go, but one of those is 1941 Counter Attack, which costs almost double the price of the SuperGrafx + all 4 of the other games combined.

Pic_0426_292.jpg

 

Also rare games spotted at Mandarake! 1941 Counter Attack for 85,000 yen, Darius Alpha for 220,000 yen, Ginga Fukei Densetsu Sapphire for 110,000, Soldier Blade Special Version for 36,000, Magical Chase for some amount that I forgot, and Final Soldier Special for an amount that I forgot.

Edited by Steven Pendleton
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If all of these "special" version of these shmups are just a timed mode I really see no need in getting them over the original games (most which include these modes anyway). A waste of money in my opinion... which is why I feel the Summer Carnival games are a bit of a waste, at least I thought Alzadick or whatever it was on PC-E CD was wasted potential (while I really enjoyed the game mechanics, I just wish there was a full game... if there was I'd love to know). I do get that these were for competitions or something like that.

 

$334.99 for a stripped down version of Soldier Blade (my favorite game btw) over the full game at a bit less than half that is not something I'd ever consider buying. Maybe if I had endless amounts of money I would. 

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Yes, "special" versions are only interesting for collectors because they are rare. PCE Works usually sells them cheaper, like 30 € instead of 40 €, but it's still too expensive for a crippled shmup, and the fact that they're bootlegs make it even worse!

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18 minutes ago, DragonGrafx-16 said:

If all of these "special" version of these shmups are just a timed mode I really see no need in getting them over the original games (most which include these modes anyway). A waste of money in my opinion... which is why I feel the Summer Carnival games are a bit of a waste, at least I thought Alzadick or whatever it was on PC-E CD was wasted potential (while I really enjoyed the game mechanics, I just wish there was a full game... if there was I'd love to know). I do get that these were for competitions or something like that.

 

$334.99 for a stripped down version of Soldier Blade (my favorite game btw) over the full game at a bit less than half that is not something I'd ever consider buying. Maybe if I had endless amounts of money I would. 

Yeah, they are a total waste. I am sure someone wants them, but not me! Maybe Darius Alpha, but for that cash there are way more interesting and better games to buy!

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I've had this weird thing in my Watched Items list for a few days and just noticed that it's the last one at this price ($10 shipped):

https://www.ebay.com/itm/164125646934

2fe455d31102a858428e2ac86a137956.jpg

"Hyperkin Adapter for PC Engine"

 

Ordered it.

 

They call if a "Display converter for import consoles" but it obviously just adapts the physical shape. It exists because the Hyperkin Turbografx-16 AV Adapter and HDTV Cable (HDMI adapter) don't fit PC Engine despite having the same pin arrangement and spacing. I have no interest in either of those Hyperkin products (in particular, the HDMI cables are a scam) but I think I can use this adapter piece for some mod ideas. I can't find anyone talking about it online so I have no idea if it passes through the other pins or not.

 

Really strange that they didn't make their other devices able to fit both the TG16 and the PC Engine without this. All they needed to do was use a rectangular connector that fits both.

 

A part of me really hopes this will pass through the other signals and let me fit a PC Engine into an American Turbo-CD dock just because I want to see that awkward setup. atariage_icon_smile.gif

 

 

 

If all of these "special" version of these shmups are just a timed mode I really see no need in getting them over the original games (most which include these modes anyway). A waste of money in my opinion... which is why I feel the Summer Carnival games are a bit of a waste, at least I thought Alzadick or whatever it was on PC-E CD was wasted potential (while I really enjoyed the game mechanics, I just wish there was a full game... if there was I'd love to know). I do get that these were for competitions or something like that.  

$334.99 for a stripped down version of Soldier Blade (my favorite game btw) over the full game at a bit less than half that is not something I'd ever consider buying. Maybe if I had endless amounts of money I would. 

 

 

I feel the same way except I know I'd buy Nintendo World Championships in a heartbeat if I saw it for $334.99, and it's a special timed mode version of three NES games. atariage_icon_smile.gif

 

 

 

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So if you get that and I guess there is a hdmi Jack/cable for tg then I could make my CG2 do hdmi?  I bet the thing is powered as nothing is ever easy anymore.  

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18 minutes ago, Tanooki said:

So if you get that and I guess there is a hdmi Jack/cable for tg then I could make my CG2 do hdmi?  I bet the thing is powered as nothing is ever easy anymore.  

If you all want is HDMI, there is a VERY easy solution.

 

https://www.amazon.co.jp/dp/B07S2PGZY2/ref=sr_1_fkmrnull_1?__mk_ja_JP=カタカナ&keywords=PCE用HDMIブースター&qid=1558417342&s=gateway&sr=8-1-fkmrnull

 

This naturally = no CD games.

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So if you get that and I guess there is a hdmi Jack/cable for tg then I could make my CG2 do hdmi?  I bet the thing is powered as nothing is ever easy anymore.

It seems to be literally a passive port extender with the same shape as a TurboGrafx. Since a standard rectangular block connector fits any TurboGrafx or PC Engine with an EXT port, they should have used a standard connector in the other products to begin with (universal fit). Either this thing makes up for their error or they didn't want people misaligning their other adapters and bending pins.

Yes, you could get a LevelHike or Hyperkin TurboGrafx-16 HDMI cable and this adapter for your PC Engine CoreGrafx, but it will be no better than connecting a generic analog to HDMI converter. That's because these console-specific "HDMI cables" are really just RGB cables with a built-in analog to HDMI converter using the same chips that were intended to go inside HD televisions. As a result, they do not properly scale 240p and destroy 60hz effects.

I'm most offended that they would sell these things for 240p consoles since they are entirely unsuited for 240p and you would literally get better result without them if you just plug straight into your TV (assuming it has analog inputs). Granted, many TVs don't have analog inputs these days but, IMO, the entire point of a console-specific HDMI adapter is to properly adapt and scale said console where your TV might fail. Most HDTVs with analog inputs have the same issue where they de-interlace non-interlaced 240p so paying extra to end up with the same crap and additional latency is a rip off.

The only HDMI cable I would trust is RGC's RAD2X since it's literally RGB to component cables with a built-in RetroTink 2X (no framebuffer; no added latency). Still, most of us might as well buy a RetroTink 2X and some HD Retrovision cables to use with all our consoles. Similarly, someone who doesn't care about the Hyperkin and LevelHike cables deinterlacing non-interlaced 240p would be better served buying a generic box for $20 (half the price) since it will support all their consoles the same way.

There is an HDMI adapter in Japan that is no better. IIRC, it connects to closure video, so it's even worse. They also have an LCD attachment that will have the same issue.

The problem with RAD2X is that you have to buy cables intended for another console and then get a mod or converter. Most popular is the Genesis 2 cables into a mini-DIN mod, Super SD System³, or dbGrafxBooster/Engine Block. Of course, the dbGrafxBooster/Engine Block occupies the EXT port without replicating the functionality of whatever else you might want there.

If you are going to mod it internally it makes more sense to go with a DIN8 mod instead of a Genesis 2-style mini-DIN (that's more for replacing the RF on the white PCE). Unfortunately, that means there won't be an appropriate RAD2X cable to use though it would be easy to whip up a DIN8 adapter to one of their other cables. You might prefer to mod an IFU-30 instead to avoid soldering to chip legs and go straight to Genesis 1 DIN or whatever other connector you want. Magic Trashman recently made a panel that replaces the IFU's composite AV jacks with a Genesis 2 mini-DIN:
https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:4201672

But back to that $10 Hyperkin thing:
What I'm really hoping for is a PCB that can be easily modified or replaced with a variant of MartinH/Skumlos' design, letting you reuse the shell and connectors. Granted, I have 3D printers and can use the housing he designed with the $5 connector he suggests but it still won't let me connect a CD-ROM² unit like this might. It would really open the mod up to people without 3D printers and add the pass-thru functionality you can't get from dbGrafxBooster/Engine Block. :)

https://github.com/skumlos/pcengine-rgb-addon
https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:3276632

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I'm tempted to order it just to confirm but I'm 95% sure it will fail the 240p Test Suite "Lens of Truth" test since it likely mishandles 240p. If it did not fail then it would be big news and everyone would be using the same affordable hardware for their 240p retro consoles. As it is, the cheapest by far is the RetroTink 2X tech inside a $50 RAD 2X cable, but that also includes the expense of adapting RGBS to YPbPr component so there is room for a chip to do this more directly for less money. Problem is, no one is making a chip like that and if they were it would be marketed for that purpose instead of showing up in a Japanese adapter for a single retro console.

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1 hour ago, Steven Pendleton said:

It's garbage. I converts composite, not RGB and reportedly does a poor job. I'm guessing that it doesn't upscale at all.

 

People were surprised that Columbus Circle would bother putting such a useless product for such an small market.

 

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It's garbage. I converts composite, not RGB and reportedly does a poor job. I'm guessing that it doesn't upscale at all.   People were surprised that Columbus Circle would bother putting such a useless product for such an small market.

Yeah. That's what I tried to say earlier when auto-correct changed "composite video" to "closure video." AtariAge really should give you days to edit and not only one hour. :(

 

In the pic you can see the RGB traces go straight to the mini-DIN instead of the chip. 

It technically upscales because it doesn't output 240p but it isn't going to handle it any better than your typical HDTV with composite input. Those chips are intended for embedding into an HDTV and adapting the analog inputs to your native panel resolution but they take the digital panel output and run it through an HDMI transmitter instead.

 

If your TV doesn't have analog inputs you are literally better off with a generic box for $20.

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Well thanks you two. More than I expected but says a lot.  I’d not want phony support and as it stands my CG2 is put up until a true hdmi solution happens for it or for my duo I use now. 
 

I have rca cable support so I’m good on that end an natively nec did well with their output so it’s fairly nice. I’d just like a real thing like all those made for Nintendo Sony and sega stuff there now. 

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Oh, man, I hope this is legit...

Remember back when I got my Akumajo Dracula X Chi no Rondo for $100.51 complete except for the spine card (obi strip)? A few people told me there was no way it was real at that price... but it was (FAAT).

Then I got a loose copy for $69.98 and it was legit too (FADT).

Well, I just bought another for $56 shipped and all signs are that it's real too.
103a786916500ba58d499d303ea4b4ee.jpg

The main reason I got the second one is because the ReDump set only has FABT and FACT and I have extra consoles to trade off. It would make a great addition. That reminds me... I still need the proper Plextor drive for ripping these. I don't know what production code this one will have but I'm almost positive that it's legit.

Only way this one is fake is if it's one of those Care4Data factory-pressed fakes and I doubt that. The hub is thicker on those and this seller was selling a lot of other games including loose Sega CD stuff without any suspicious big-ticket items. If it's a counterfeit then it fooled him too so I will be opening the package on video like before.

Speaking of "before," so far the only fake I encountered was the absolute most expensive one: $100.76... exactly $0.25 more than the real one I started with. I recorded myself opening the package and inspecting the disc (a CD-R) which proved the seller used pics of a different disc (presumably a real one). It didn't match what I received at all so I got my money back for that.

The idea that the price indicates how likely legit it is really only factors when the price was set by the seller and/or the listing showed something telling. You know: the disc hub code, provenance, seller's believable anecdote, reputation, 3rd-party verification, etc. When someone puts something up for bids without an adequate description, people bid accordingly ...and if they can't tell for 100% sure that means they bid accordingly low. In this case the production code was not visible in the pictures but I was able to compare very small details to my actual discs to conclude that this is almost certainly real. Well, "real" if there aren't and shenanigans like showing pictures of a real disc.

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Well thanks you two. More than I expected but says a lot.  I’d not want phony support and as it stands my CG2 is put up until a true hdmi solution happens for it or for my duo I use now. 

 

I have rca cable support so I’m good on that end an natively nec did well with their output so it’s fairly nice. I’d just like a real thing like all those made for Nintendo Sony and sega stuff there now. 

If you mean the RGC RAD 2X cables... yeah. :)

 

Unfortunately, all the $30 Hyperlink, #Pound, LevelHike, Xtreme, etc cables for those systems do the same thing. :(

 

Some source RGB, some source composite or S-Video (N64 cables) but all of them handle 240p improperly. Some have other issues, like Hyperkin not fitting the Genesis correctly (wrong DIN8 arrangement) or having the wrong signal levels on SNES. In almost every case you are better off with a $20 generic [whatever]2HDMI device. Most aren't even powered off the console, so there goes that extra convenience.

 

Those crap HDMI cables also charge $10 extra for TurboGrafx and Neo Geo versions ($20 extra for PC Engine thanks to this sold-separately adapter thing) so it's even more infuriating! I can only see using them with 480i+ consoles like Dreamcast and XBOX where a VGA box or HD Pack is not easy to come by for use with a generic converter.

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That's a shame POUND does that.  Their PS1 cable is fantastic, if you use it on that on PS2 though it like cust the brightness by half ruining things in some games.  It works, but it's also a wall adapter required setup which really sucks.  I'm so out of free plugs and already running 2 HDMI splitters as it is.  And because of the pissy nature of a fire stick I already have to remove one of my splitters just to use that to watch actual TV on the TV.  It's another piece of motivation for me not to buy until there's a true HDMI device fix.

 

I have made it a mission to get my old systems on HDMI.  The NES has the kit, SNES went SuperNT, N64 got Ultra'd, and the Cube got GC2HDMI'd out of the rear port and what a difference it makes and not with lame corner cutting and powered devices.  I know there is one, the $450~ish shipped from Japan Upergrafx2 but that's way beyond financial reasonability.

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9 hours ago, Black_Tiger said:

It's garbage. I converts composite, not RGB and reportedly does a poor job. I'm guessing that it doesn't upscale at all.

 

People were surprised that Columbus Circle would bother putting such a useless product for such an small market.

 

This doesn't surprise me given that it's Columbus Circle. Their Gleylancer reprint is really cool, but it's using garbage parts. Still, I'd rather use that version than the original cart to keep the original in nice condition.

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8 hours ago, CZroe said:

Oh, man, I hope this is legit...

Remember back when I got my Akumajo Dracula X Chi no Rondo for $100.51 complete except for the spine card (obi strip)? A few people told me there was no way it was real at that price... but it was (FAAT).

Then I got a loose copy for $69.98 and it was legit too (FADT).

Well, I just bought another for $56 shipped and all signs are that it's real too.
103a786916500ba58d499d303ea4b4ee.jpg

The main reason I got the second one is because the ReDump set only has FABT and FACT and I have extra consoles to trade off. It would make a great addition. That reminds me... I still need the proper Plextor drive for ripping these. I don't know what production code this one will have but I'm almost positive that it's legit.

Only way this one is fake is if it's one of those Care4Data factory-pressed fakes and I doubt that. The hub is thicker on those and this seller was selling a lot of other games including loose Sega CD stuff without any suspicious big-ticket items. If it's a counterfeit then it fooled him too so I will be opening the package on video like before.

Speaking of "before," so far the only fake I encountered was the absolute most expensive one: $100.76... exactly $0.25 more than the real one I started with. I recorded myself opening the package and inspecting the disc (a CD-R) which proved the seller used pics of a different disc (presumably a real one). It didn't match what I received at all so I got my money back for that.

The idea that the price indicates how likely legit it is really only factors when the price was set by the seller and/or the listing showed something telling. You know: the disc hub code, provenance, seller's believable anecdote, reputation, 3rd-party verification, etc. When someone puts something up for bids without an adequate description, people bid accordingly ...and if they can't tell for 100% sure that means they bid accordingly low. In this case the production code was not visible in the pictures but I was able to compare very small details to my actual discs to conclude that this is almost certainly real. Well, "real" if there aren't and shenanigans like showing pictures of a real disc.

That looks real. I didn't know that the game has revisions or whatever those codes are. I just checked mine and it's FABT. Cutting Room Floor doesn't say anything about differences. Are there any/what are they?

Edited by Steven Pendleton

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That looks real. I didn't know that the game has revisions or whatever those codes are. I just checked mine and it's FABT. Cutting Room Floor doesn't say anything about differences. Are there any/what are they?
I'm pretty sure they are production batches where only physical structure or subchannel data might change (location of sectors on the disc, for example). The game itself could still be 100% identical but ReDump tracks them separately anyway.

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Just now, CZroe said:
14 minutes ago, Steven Pendleton said:
That looks real. I didn't know that the game has revisions or whatever those codes are. I just checked mine and it's FABT. Cutting Room Floor doesn't say anything about differences. Are there any/what are they?

I'm pretty sure they are production batches where only physical structure or subchannel data might change (location of sectors on the disc, for example). The game itself could still be 100% identical but ReDump tracks them separately anyway.

Okay. I figured if The Cutting Room Floor doesn't say anything about it there are no differences. Too bad it's disc only, but if you have a CIB copy already, I guess it doesn't matter. It's still one of the best games I have ever played, even if it is a bit too easy.

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Okay. I figured if The Cutting Room Floor doesn't say anything about it there are no differences. Too bad it's disc only, but if you have a CIB copy already, I guess it doesn't matter. It's still one of the best games I have ever played, even if it is a bit too easy.

Yeah... I was disciplined enough to 100% the game with Richter before ever playing as Maria so I would get some challenge out of it. Maria really makes everything so easy she spoils the game! After that I challenged myself to 100% it without getting Game Over (still using Richter only). Then I challenged myself to do it in one sitting... I have two IFUs, two Turbo-CD docks, and a few blocks on the UGX-02 all containing a different 100% run.

A lot of the stuff I thought was so hard before became super-easy... like second nature. Now it's one of those games I randomly re-play just to get better at it. :)

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