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FPGA Based Videogame System

Interest in an FPGA Videogame System  

665 members have voted

  1. 1. I would pay....

  2. 2. I Would Like Support for...

  3. 3. Games Should Run From...

    • SD Card / USB Memory Sticks
    • Original Cartridges
    • Hopes and Dreams
  4. 4. The Video Inteface Should be...



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Probably going to happen in the order of complexity, if it happens.

 

Also, an important thing to remember: SD2SNES doesn't have to give up some of its FPGA to be an SNES. I don't know how much overhead the FPGA in the Super NT has (I get the impression it's a decent amount, but what that means is in the air) but the SA-1 and SuperFX are decently complex (hence why they're not on the SD2SNES yet, and may not even be feasible) so there's a very real chance that there's not going to be enough FPGA to go around between being both an SNES and an expansion chip. I mean, when designing a console like this, part of saving costs is choosing the FPGA that meets your needs with a minimum of wasted potential. I mean, there's the possibility that this guy has a lot of unknown juice left in it, but there's a very real chance the SD2SNES will still be the best option for expansion chips.

 

I have a hope that the creators of SD2SNES will see this and make something happen. I can't speak for everyone here, but having one concise solution to backup my library on as well as mess around with hacks/overclocking/translations would be awesome. Given the success of the Super NT interest must be at an all time high now. This would be a great opportunity for them.

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Can't make any more edits to this post, but I went and tried to replicate it on the SD2SNES on the real GPM-02 SNES and I was not able to. So this appears to be a problem specific to the version of Legend of Zelda in the SM pack on the Super NT that doesn't surface on a real SNES. With the real cart it doesn't happen.

I tried several times to reproduce this bug using my Super NT firmware 4.1, sd2snes, and the latest GoodSNES ROM for A Link to the Past. You are probably right, it is a bug with your copy of the game ROM.

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For me personally, the scanline emulation is just as important as the ability to play on an HD display.

 

I played just every Genesis, TG16, and SNES game on a nice Sony Trinitron TV back in the early 90's, and still enjoy gaming on a CRT even today, but it would be nice to be able to play these games on a large HD display in my living room.

 

I wonder if it's possible to add a few different scanlines/filter options to the SNT. I'd love something that looks like a nice Trinitron/Wega, or PVM style CRT.

This does a commendable job:

256779-DK%20142u4%20shadow%20mask%20poin

HLSL filtering from MAME. If you look closely you can see the small vertical slices, emulating the shadow mask/aperture grill effects.

 

 

257145-goldnaxe.png

This also looks nice, but I could do without the rounded tube style. I gamed mostly on a flat screen CRT, so the distortion, I can live without.

 

Anything that gets me closer to this without having to move a 200lb CRT, would be incredible. :)

SNES-Fzero--YPbPR-Wega-CRT.jpg

 

SNES-SMB2-CRT-02.jpg

 

SNES-SMK-CRT-01.jpg

Edited by spoonman
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I tried several times to reproduce this bug using my Super NT firmware 4.1, sd2snes, and the latest GoodSNES ROM for A Link to the Past. You are probably right, it is a bug with your copy of the game ROM.

 

I also tried to replicate it with the LoZ JP and PAL versions that are in the SM pack and can't replicate it their either. Also tried to see if I could make it show up in the BS Zelda game but instead found a different bug.

35n8qdt.png

 

But because it's basically a hack, that bug is more likely a bug in the patched rom (BS The Legend of Zelda: Ancient Stone Tablets (BSゼルダの伝説 古代の石盤 )). So I'd have to go re-play the entire thing on the actual SNES anyway.

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SA1 is much more important. It would give us five "important" games (Mario RPG, Marvelous, 2x Kirby, Jikkyou Oshaberi Parodius) and even something like the "SMW - 8th Annual Vanilla Level Design Contest: Collaboration Hack". Super FX games haven't aged well - all I'd care about is Yoshi's Island and maybe Starfox 1+2.

 

SPC7110 would also be nice, to use the new English translation of Far East of Eden Zero.

Good point.

 

Although I do have US Super Mario RPG, US Kirby All Star, SFC Kirby Dreamland 3 and SFC Talking Parodius. Did not know about Marvelous, gonna have to look that up. I also got Starfox, Yoshi's Island, and Stunt Racer FX is still fairly cheap on the SNES front. Doom, I'm not really interested in owning, but it may be cool to play the ROM just to experience it. I also plan on ordering the NEW Starfox 2 repro soon (the final version on the SNES Classic, not the beta dump that's been floating about for years). But most of the FX games simply used the chip to push primitive 3D polygons making them play like glorified tech demos compared to 5th gen N64 / PS1 games. I think Yoshi's Island was the only FX game cart that really used the chip to push the limits of 16-bit 2D graphics. And it's a great game worth playing. Not sure what it goes for these days as I've had mine for some time now.

 

What I am saying is that while the expansion chips are nice to have, their smaller library makes most of the games attainable. Megaman X2 and X3 are stupid expensive but the Japanese Rockman versions are still relatively cheap and don't require much translation to pick up and play.

 

Off the top of my head, Super Mario RPG is really the primary chipped game that absolutely requires the US release for English speaking gamers, over Super Famicom imports. I would not want to try playing through the Super Famicom version.

 

And finally everyone keeps singing the praises of the SD2SNES, but the single most in demand expansion chips aren't supported at all so it's an unfinished piece of tech. MSU-1 doesn't really have much legitamate homebrew usage, just mainly hacks injecting commercial games with CDDA audio, and occasional cutscenes sourced from animated cartoons that stick out like a sore thumb.

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And finally everyone keeps singing the praises of the SD2SNES, but the single most in demand expansion chips aren't supported at all so it's an unfinished piece of tech. MSU-1 doesn't really have much legitamate homebrew usage, just mainly hacks injecting commercial games with CDDA audio, and occasional cutscenes sourced from animated cartoons that stick out like a sore thumb.

Honestly, the real advantage of it is realtime saving and very quick game loading. On top of that, CX4 and DSP-1 support are nothing to sneeze at. Mario Kart is an all time classic, and so are the Mega Man X games. The potential for SA-1 and Super FX are nice, but if "doesn't have every feature imaginable" makes something unfinished, pretty much everything is. And while MSU-1 hasn't been used for a lot of interesting things in homebrew yet, the implementation of an MSU-1 version of Road Blaster shows it could allow for some interesting versions of FMV games. I think a version of Night Trap on SNES would be hilarious.

 

So yeah, it's not going to cure world hunger, but it's not exactly an "unfinished piece of tech" either.

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I think the main expansion chip I would like to see support for is the Super FX chip. The thing about this chip and probably why it has not been supported, is because it's really a little GSU. Or at least that's what I've been told by a programmer who has worked on various consoles including the DS. Apparently it may be so complex it would be difficult to port over to an FPGA. I am not technical enough to understand why it exists already in emulation but not on FPGA.

 

If it can be done in software, it can be done in FPGA. I believe the reason why it isn't (to date) is because of the complexity-size. We'll need a bigger and more expensive FPGA.

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Honestly, the real advantage of it is realtime saving and very quick game loading. On top of that, CX4 and DSP-1 support are nothing to sneeze at. Mario Kart is an all time classic, and so are the Mega Man X games. The potential for SA-1 and Super FX are nice, but if "doesn't have every feature imaginable" makes something unfinished, pretty much everything is. And while MSU-1 hasn't been used for a lot of interesting things in homebrew yet, the implementation of an MSU-1 version of Road Blaster shows it could allow for some interesting versions of FMV games. I think a version of Night Trap on SNES would be hilarious.

 

So yeah, it's not going to cure world hunger, but it's not exactly an "unfinished piece of tech" either.

 

The point of the MSU-1 is overlooked because it's primary "cool factor" can only be achieved with existing BS-X games and retrofitted to other games that had OST or remixed sound tracks.

 

Yes, it's unlikely we will see any game designed specifically to use the MSU-1 since that would require people to own two pieces of kit, a SNES/SNT and the SD2SNES, or be forced to play it on a software emulator and all the complicated patching that goes with it. People just don't understand or care how to do it, so they just find someone who already did and use their prepatched stuff. And then it gets into the hands of people trying to make money without any care about copyrights. I can tell you right now that if the MSU-1 was an actual chip, there would be a buttload of pirate game carts out there with it, because there is already a buttload of pirate "english patched" carts.

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Honestly, the real advantage of it is realtime saving and very quick game loading. On top of that, CX4 and DSP-1 support are nothing to sneeze at. Mario Kart is an all time classic, and so are the Mega Man X games. The potential for SA-1 and Super FX are nice, but if "doesn't have every feature imaginable" makes something unfinished, pretty much everything is. And while MSU-1 hasn't been used for a lot of interesting things in homebrew yet, the implementation of an MSU-1 version of Road Blaster shows it could allow for some interesting versions of FMV games. I think a version of Night Trap on SNES would be hilarious.

 

So yeah, it's not going to cure world hunger, but it's not exactly an "unfinished piece of tech" either.

MyEverdrive 2.0 used a DSP1b from a Balls3D Cart. It was worth it IMO. aside from Mario Kart, Pilotwngs, and Ballz3D, most DSP1 usage was relegated to generic sports games.

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Sad truth however, you lose the rear surround channel content entirely when the stereo mix gets converted to mono for the RF feed.

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I tried several times to reproduce this bug using my Super NT firmware 4.1, sd2snes, and the latest GoodSNES ROM for A Link to the Past. You are probably right, it is a bug with your copy of the game ROM.

I was able to reproduce it loading from the SD card on the jailbroken firmware, using the ROM from the SmokeMonster pack (SHA256: 66871d66be19ad2c34c927d6b14cd8eb6fc3181965b6e517cb361f7316009cfb), but it took many tries -- I had to exit and re-enter the house probably something like 15 times before it crashed. I would try it on my cartridge, but I have a game in progress that I don't want to delete.

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Maybe it would be helpful if Kevtris broke down all the audio/video settings and offered a native option?

 

Resolution - native (whatever the game is coded for in real time)

Refresh rate - native (whatever the game is coded for in real time). I suspect variable refresh rate displays will help.

Aspect Ratio - native (256 x 8/7)

Audio - native (32 kHz). Hoping the upcoming DAC has an optical pass thru for our own audio DAC.

 

 

On a side note, does the snes/sfc output in the sRGB color space? We should be calibrating our monitors to the correct full range color. I dont think anyone has mentioned this.

I set the Chromaticity as "Adobe 1998" in my iScan, and let it convert that into "RGBs/709" for my monitor. I find that it almost completely fixes the muted/purplish reds, like Mario's hat in SMW, and makes greens look better. I'm not sure it's correct, but it looks right to me. "Adobe 1998" differs from the standard RGBs mostly in the green, it's pushed out farther (more saturated) and moved a bit towards blue. I don't understand why it affects other colors too, especially not red when the numbers shown only indicate the green primary being moved. But whatever works.

 

Unfortunately, I'm not sure if the colors seemed off with default RGBs/709 the same way with the OG hardware, because I never used it much on the iScan because of horrid ringing present in the upscaling of 240p, and I packed it away and put the SNT in it's place. I do see that purplish red in all the screenshots of SNT around here though, so it's not just my setup.

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I hate to say this, but I believe my Analogue Super Nt could be defective.
I've waited until testing it with several different configurations, and comparing with my original SNES system, before posting about it.

 

The problem I am experiencing is audio popping. It sounds a lot like clipping effects.

I originally thought it was just during Rock & Roll Racing, but it turns out I noticed it more because I played it with headphones on, and the audio turned up a bit.

 

I then connected the Super Nt in my bedroom, to my 24" HD display, and again I used headphones, and heard the popping sounds during everything.
This also includes the Analogue Nt logo startup, as well as both Super Turrican games. Which is disappointing, and pretty much eliminates any cartridges, or even the port itself.

Stuff I've tried:

  • Resetting the Super Nt to default settings
  • Connecting to 3 different HD displays
  • Switching out HDMI cables
  • Changing USB power cable
  • Trying other carts, including the SD2SNES, and several original SNES carts

I didn't try changing any firmware yet, because I didn't want to complicate things.
I did read the readme for 4.1, and it said nothing about any fixing audio issues.

Has anyone else noticed an audio issue like this?

Can an FPGA board have a specific audio issue, while everything else seems fine? Maybe it's something wrong with the HDMI port?

I'm not sure what else I can try, but I'm open to ideas. Otherwise I will have to contact Analogue about a possible replacement.

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Anyone have thoughts on the Sd2snes ever getting more support for the various expansion chips? All the status page says is its planned to attempt but I've seen a lot of speculation that some of them are not possible on the existing hardware. It's an expensive device selling a lot of units so I'm surprised it's not getting more active support. My hope is that the super nt eventually fills the gap but I wonder if we will eventually see a new version the Sd2snes with updated hardware.

 

It's open source, so eventually someone's going to take it up even if ikari is unable to get it done. I have no idea when, since it's more popular right now to complain about the lack of FX/SA-1/SPC7110 support than it is for another coder to take a crack at adding the support.

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I think the main expansion chip I would like to see support for is the Super FX chip. The thing about this chip and probably why it has not been supported, is because it's really a little GSU. Or at least that's what I've been told by a programmer who has worked on various consoles including the DS. Apparently it may be so complex it would be difficult to port over to an FPGA. I am not technical enough to understand why it exists already in emulation but not on FPGA.

I keep seeing information like this. That's why I'm wondering if the SD2Snes has peaked. It's been about 9 months since the last SD2Snes firmware update and the only things currently being worked on according to the status page is cheat support. Cheat support has been in development since 2015. Additional chipsets are apparently not even going to be worked on for another 2 updates. It must be bringing in money so I wonder what the deal is.

 

 

 

It's open source, so eventually someone's going to take it up even if ikari is unable to get it done. I have no idea when, since it's more popular right now to complain about the lack of FX/SA-1/SPC7110 support than it is for another coder to take a crack at adding the support.

 

With the SNES more popular than ever I hope this is the case. I'm happy with the device but it would be nice to know if it's been taken as far as it can go chipset wise. Amazing how far we have come in retro gaming.

Edited by Shadowgate

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I hate to say this, but I believe my Analogue Super Nt could be defective.

I've waited until testing it with several different configurations, and comparing with my original SNES system, before posting about it.

 

The problem I am experiencing is audio popping. It sounds a lot like clipping effects.

I originally thought it was just during Rock & Roll Racing, but it turns out I noticed it more because I played it with headphones on, and the audio turned up a bit.

 

I then connected the Super Nt in my bedroom, to my 24" HD display, and again I used headphones, and heard the popping sounds during everything.

This also includes the Analogue Nt logo startup, as well as both Super Turrican games. Which is disappointing, and pretty much eliminates any cartridges, or even the port itself.

 

Stuff I've tried:

  • Resetting the Super Nt to default settings
  • Connecting to 3 different HD displays
  • Switching out HDMI cables
  • Changing USB power cable
  • Trying other carts, including the SD2SNES, and several original SNES carts

I didn't try changing any firmware yet, because I didn't want to complicate things.

I did read the readme for 4.1, and it said nothing about any fixing audio issues.

Has anyone else noticed an audio issue like this?

 

Can an FPGA board have a specific audio issue, while everything else seems fine? Maybe it's something wrong with the HDMI port?

 

I'm not sure what else I can try, but I'm open to ideas. Otherwise I will have to contact Analogue about a possible replacement.

 

Glad to know this isn't just me. I tried Super Metroid the other day on the latest JB firmware and noticed a tonne of audio pops and crackles. I also noticed it while wearing headphones.

 

Haven't had time to try much else since then, nor did I want to with the saving issue.

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I keep seeing information like this. That's why I'm wondering if the SD2Snes has peaked. It's been about 9 months since the last SD2Snes firmware update and the only things currently being worked on according to the status page is cheat support. Cheat support has been in development since 2015. Additional chipsets are apparently not even going to be worked on for another 2 updates. It must be bringing in money so I wonder what the deal is.

It does seem that Ikari has either hit a wall from a technical standpoint or has lost interest in further development on SD2SNES firmware. I suspect Kevtris is our only hope for further enhancement chip support :(

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I hate to say this, but I believe my Analogue Super Nt could be defective.

...

I'm not sure what else I can try, but I'm open to ideas. Otherwise I will have to contact Analogue about a possible replacement.

 

I'm pretty sure it's clipping because your audio setup is letting it.

 

I was watching OBS on my capture card and noticed that audio is always hitting red, but averaging in the yellow area.

 

So to test that I recorded the audio and set the volume to maximum in the playback video to see if it clips. If anything it seems like the audio muffled more. Maybe try the -3DB output cut feature in the audio to reduce the volume and see if you hear the same effect.

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It does seem that Ikari has either hit a wall from a technical standpoint or has lost interest in further development on SD2SNES firmware. I suspect Kevtris is our only hope for further enhancement chip support :(

 

It's also possible that he, and others that are capable FPGA developers kept being badgered by people to do these things when they make no money from it. It's fun to design things, but when your "fans" constantly demand you do things so they don't have to spend money on real carts kinda puts capable people in the "no thanks" camp. Just look at some of the comments in this thread about wanting the JB so they don't have to buy a SD2SNES or Everdrive. Please try to cover your ulterior motives a little.

 

At any rate the SD2SNES or whatever replaces it, if it turns out a more powerful FPGA is needed to do the SA1 or GSU-1 then you'd still be buying one of these devices, and the SuperNT would likely NOT have space to do both of them simultaneously, and would probably have to resort to "SNES+(chip)" cores. The SD2SNES AFAIK actually has all the cores addressable, though that doesn't mean you can use all of them at the same time.

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For me, scanlines are part of the total package that is the look of a CRT and it's fruitless to try to replicate that look on a modern display. I'd rather enjoy the CRT look naturally on a CRT and a razor sharp pixel perfect look naturally on a modern display.

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For me, scanlines are part of the total package that is the look of a CRT and it's fruitless to try to replicate that look on a modern display. I'd rather enjoy the CRT look naturally on a CRT and a razor sharp pixel perfect look naturally on a modern display.

It's kinda similar for me. Like... I tend to feel something's off if I've hooked up S-Video cables on my retro consoles. Something, for me, just feels 'right' about composite cables or the RF adapter. Though, of course, that may just be because as a kid that's what I grew up with. I either want the slightly blurred, glowing CRT image, or the super-crisp all-digital setup.

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It's also possible that he, and others that are capable FPGA developers kept being badgered by people to do these things when they make no money from it. It's fun to design things, but when your "fans" constantly demand you do things so they don't have to spend money on real carts kinda puts capable people in the "no thanks" camp. Just look at some of the comments in this thread about wanting the JB so they don't have to buy a SD2SNES or Everdrive. Please try to cover your ulterior motives a little.

 

At any rate the SD2SNES or whatever replaces it, if it turns out a more powerful FPGA is needed to do the SA1 or GSU-1 then you'd still be buying one of these devices, and the SuperNT would likely NOT have space to do both of them simultaneously, and would probably have to resort to "SNES+(chip)" cores. The SD2SNES AFAIK actually has all the cores addressable, though that doesn't mean you can use all of them at the same time.

 

The white knights are just as bad as the demanding fans. Are the people who don't want to spend money on real carts somehow the enemy? Looking out for the eBay sellers? A few rude people are annoying but I am glad to see people are so excited for these features. All these fans you despise are the reason products like the Super NT has a market. I hope people keep asking for chipset support.

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Are the people who don't want to spend money on real carts somehow the enemy?

 

If the only reason they are asking is so they can sell their collection now before the bottom falls out of the market when the chip support happens, if it happens. Yes. Same with people who bought NES Mini and SNES Mini's entirely to resell them on eBay with pirate games on them. These people do not care what damage they do, they just see dollar signs.

 

Did you notice how the SNT immediately sold old the day that JB was announced?

 

(PS Look on eBay at the price spread between the Japanese versions of Super Mario RPG and Yoshi's Island vs the American versions)

Edited by Kismet
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If the only reason they are asking is so they can sell their collection now before the bottom falls out of the market when the chip support happens, if it happens. Yes. Same with people who bought NES Mini and SNES Mini's entirely to resell them on eBay with pirate games on them. These people do not care what damage they do, they just see dollar signs.

 

Did you notice how the SNT immediately sold old the day that JB was announced?

 

(PS Look on eBay at the price spread between the Japanese versions of Super Mario RPG and Yoshi's Island vs the American versions)

Wow! You have a very low opinion of people. I think you're getting a bit lost in assumptions. The prices on Japanese games is cheaper vs the American ones on every console and its always been that way. All those precious rpgs we all spend hundreds on are in the 500 yen bargain bin in most cases. Not every collector treats their collection like an investment. I'd say that is a very small minority from my experience. Personally I'm just glad all these games that were released in a time that video games were treated as childrens toys are getting the attention they deserve.

 

Edit: Speaking of demanding fans. Can anyone link me to where the TurboGrafx community soured Kevtris on the console? I know I'm opening an old wound but I would like to see what actually happened. All I know is that something happened at some point where TurboGrafx purists attacked him.

Edited by Shadowgate
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