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ratwell

The best video to HDMI converter

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I’ve located a brand new 800XL motherboard and power supply in my basement that I bought from Best Electronics back in 2005.

 

While I’m on the hunt for a keyboard and case and 1050 drive I’m researching video options...

 

I’ve still got the 13” Sony KV-1370R trinitron I used years ago but it only had a composite input so I’m wondering what’s the best way to enjoy the classic games I’m still fond of.

 

One option is the UAV upgrade:

 

https://thebrewingacademy.com/products/tba-ultimate-atari-video-uav-board-for-400-800-xl-xe


What’s the best S-Video to HDMI converter available that can take advantage of this upgrade?

 

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6 minutes ago, ratwell said:

I’ve located a brand new 800XL motherboard and power supply in my basement that I bought from Best Electronics back in 2005.

 

While I’m on the hunt for a keyboard and case and 1050 drive I’m researching video options...

 

I’ve still got the 13” Sony KV-1370R trinitron I used years ago but it only had a composite input so I’m wondering what’s the best way to enjoy the classic games I’m still fond of.

 

One option is the UAV upgrade:

 

https://thebrewingacademy.com/products/tba-ultimate-atari-video-uav-board-for-400-800-xl-xe


What’s the best S-Video to HDMI converter available that can take advantage of this upgrade?

 

 

The UAV is an awesome upgrade for basic video, but if you're thinking of getting a UAV and some sort of converter, you'd probably be money ahead to purchase a Sophia2 and a DVI to HDMI cable instead.

 

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+1 for the Sophia 2 and DVI to HDMI passive adapter. It is like looking at an emulator on a nice LCD. 

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10 hours ago, ratwell said:

One option is the UAV upgrade:

 

https://thebrewingacademy.com/products/tba-ultimate-atari-video-uav-board-for-400-800-xl-xe


What’s the best S-Video to HDMI converter available that can take advantage of this upgrade?

 

 

Like others have said, the Sophia 2 will get you DVI output. 

 

With my Incognito 800, I've been playing around with a Retrotink Pro. A little pricing, but the HDMI output is outstanding. It almost looks like I'm using an emulator on my LCD.

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If you have more than one old computer or game console, then a high quality hdmi upscaler makes perfect sense. I have the Retrotink 2X Pro and use it with differerent 8bit Ataris, Nintendo, Sega and Sony consoles. If you just want to connect your 800XL to a modern flat TV, Sophia 2 is probably the best option.

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Can't beat this one for the price $33.

OREI RCA/S-Video Composite & HDMI to HDMI 50/60 Hz Multi-System PAL/NTSC Analog to Digital Audio Video Converter - Dual Voltage (XD-901)

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004UNYX9M/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?smid=A19VQHYZW00VUY&psc=1

The picture quality is pretty good with no noticeable lag.  

I like that it has an HDMI input as well, so it's a switch so you don't have to take up two HDMI ports when your TV only has a few.

 

71L9tOmQrfL._AC_SL1500_.jpg

Edited by ACML

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I have a SOPHIA1 DVI in one of my 600XLs and Retrotink 2X-mini to use with my 800XLs.  Both work great and don't introduce any discernable lag.  The SOPHIA is, of course, ultra clear but it does involve some modifications to the machine and casing.  The Retrotink 2X-mini produces a much softer image but I still find it quite acceptable and since it is a completely exterior connection it's a great choice for people who don't want to cut into their cases.  

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I've got a Retrotink 2X-Mini setup now.

UAV upgrade next...

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My 1200XL has the UAV upgrade, and when I was using a flatscreen monitor, I used this s-video to HDMI adapter. It worked well, and is inexpensive:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07WWY9LL5/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o08_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

 

I'm no longer using a flatscreen since I recently picked up Toshiba 14AF42 flat-screen CRT, but I keep the adapter around in case I ever do want to hook up something via HDMI.

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Posted (edited)

The UAV upgrade is finally done. Thank you to everyone for recommending it. It's so worthwhile!

 

I documented my install in the official UAV thread with tips and gotchas:

 

 

Here are some screen captures from an 800XL -> RetroTink 2x Mini -> Elgato Cam Link. The stock S-Video in B&W is the giveaway it's an 800XL:

 

Line and Artifact Comparisons Calibrated + Sophia 2.jpg

 

DOS 2.5 Menu Comparisons Calibrated + Sophia 2.jpg

 

Boulder Dash Video Comparisons Calibrated + Sophia 2.jpg

 

I managed to find an new RF switch box (CA010112) at a local video game store...so I connected its output through an old VCR to get a composite signal that I could capture and include for comparison.


The Stock RF is very blurry and noisy compared to the stock composite. You can also see how the UAV cleans up the artifacts present in stock composite signal quite a bit.

 

Q: I have a replacement logic board which doesn't quite allow the monitor output jack to align with the opening in the case. I guess Atari changed this towards the end of the XL production run? Has anyone else run into this issue?

Edited by ratwell
Updated to add Sophia 2 to comparisons.
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7 minutes ago, snicklin said:

Why do none of these devices have RF in?

There are some that do I think, but you are just going to amplify the crappy RF signal. 

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3 minutes ago, mimo said:

There are some that do I think, but you are just going to amplify the crappy RF signal. 

I may have misunderstood these devices, but it always seems like that they're only made for Americans.

 

People in Europe were using RF cables back in the day as that was the output from our computers. I hadn't even heard of S-video until about 2000 or later.

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the signal from the RF is crappy to start with, at least in my experience with NTSC ataris. You can get converters, I think, but they will just show you the fuzz and lines in the original signals at a much higher resolution.

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41 minutes ago, snicklin said:

People in Europe were using RF cables back in the day as that was the output from our computers.

No, I bought a 20" TV with a SCART connector and used Composite Video initially with my 800 and later with 130XE

as I knew how fuzzy the RF was, lots of people I knew used Phillips or Commodore monitors too.

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Posted (edited)

Look no further:

 

DVDO iScan HD+

 

DVDO-Iscan_HD.jpeg.0e0bc4937c3e1208424fadbb462e31d1.jpeg

 

Complete abstraction of viewing device (thus enabling your choice of preferred monitor), multi-interface, multi-format (manage PAL & NTSC with finesse), multi-features (like, for instance, ARBITARY masking of any vertical and/or horizontal section of Atari's full video output, to suit your taste of visible Antic visualization-mode, and remembered per INPUT PORT !) Without mentioning that it handles XEP80 signal's "brutality" like a walk n the park, either on NTSC or PAL. Effective to such point that it will reduce your need of performing internal upgrades on your machine, thus protecting its value.

 

These are pretty expensive on the wild (eBay), but more often than not, someone desperate comes and drops them fir $90-$120... Just be smart and patient, and you will never look back! 

 

Got two of these (one operational, the other on backup), both purchased with above strategy.

 

Enjoy!

Edited by Faicuai

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, snicklin said:

People in Europe were using RF cables back in the day as that was the output from our computers. I hadn't even heard of S-video until about 2000 or later.

Maybe in eastern europe but not in the west. Since '87 i had a Commodore 1084 monitor, which had RGB-Scart and an additional S-Video (chroma/luma) input. I used the latter for my 8bit-Atari. I remember that since the late 80s most new TV-Sets had Scart as well.

Edited by Dinadan67

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I was a kid in the UK and got a 65xe in the big Dixon's sale of 88 or so which my Dad bought me for Christmas.

 

There was no way that I was buying a monitor as a child and my Dad couldn't justify spending all that extra money when I already had a perfectly decent TV (as he would see it).

 

With the kids that I knew around that time, they all had their 8-bit computers plugged into TV's, except the Amstrad CPC users.

 

What is the inherent problem with RF? Why is it so poor? Is it a standard that could produce decent output if there were decent cables? Or is there a quality problem that RF could never overcome?

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I'm not qualified to say, exactly, but I've read in threads here that Atari skimped on components and/or didn't do something right on some models. That and interference from the memory operations, etc. Maybe RF is just inherently noisier and lower quality too, not sure.

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