Recent pickups 15/6 2013

Just shoving my face in here for a quick loot post.

Picked up more video processing hardware from a user on the System11 SHMUPS forums: a Vigatec Dune-F.

SONY DSC SONY DSC

In terms of 240p performance, it seems to be essentially the same as my Vigatec FX2+, but I have yet to see it act up like the FX2+ could do when games change resolution mid-game. It looses sync and the image starts jumping. A quick reset fixes that but it’s hardly ideal. So if this works out well, I’ll be mighty pleased just by that. It also seems like it’s quite competent in other areas as well, but I’ve yet to try any new systems with it since I haven’t got the adapter I need yet (and I picked up this thing just yesterday).

Also, some games have made their way into my post box.

SONY DSC

All nice ones. I may already have Ridge Racer 7 but it really feels more right playing RR6 using the 360 controller. Those triggers are great for racing games. The music’s also pretty great, well, some tracks are. Happy to own Gyakuten Saiban on DS, or as we know it, Ace Attorney. I have played most of the games in the series, but through less legal means (sadly) so to get a proper version feels great. I have made it through the Japanese version once before, it shall be interesting to see if I can do it again.

Speaking of JP versions, getting Rockman EXE 3/Mega Man Battle Network 3 has got me absolutely stoked. I have a bit of history with the first three MMBN games and anime series it spawned, so this was a very nice thing to pick up and I’ll be sure to give it a whirl. I actually picked up the second game last year, and I beat it (well, the story mode anyway) so hopefully I’ll be able to repeat that feat. I’m only used to play these games using an emulator, after all.

Snatcher for the PC Engine is another one that I look forward to getting into. I already own the Saturn version, but after comparing the two, I really wanted to play the PCE version instead. Stoked about that one as well, even though the case has got a few blemishes.
Wing Arms for the Saturn I haven’t tried yet but I’ve watched a bit of gameplay and it seemed like fun. Borderlands 2 I picked up to play through with a friend.

And that’s all I got for now. I am waiting for a big package to arrive but it’s going surface post so maybe just not yet.

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About Ji-L87

Laid back swede with an for affection games, sweet music and specific parts of Japanese pop culture.

6 responses to “Recent pickups 15/6 2013”

  1. UltramanU says :

    Hi Ji-L87.
    Would love to read more about your experience with this outstanding scaler!
    I am thinking about buying one myself.
    Seeya

    • Ji-L87 says :

      So far I’m quite liking it. Though, as of late I’ve been moving stuff around in my room and as a result, the game corner have been covered in stuff so I haven’t had much opportunity to play around with it that much.

      But things are clearing up. It’s certainly is a bit of an odd unit, with some interesting design choices. By which I mean both the inputs on the back and the way the user interface works. The FX2+ comes out as really simple and well thought out in comparison.

      With that said, in terms of performance I have been pleased, aside from the fan in the back being a bit annoying. It’s not very loud at all, but because not much else in the hardware stack uses fans, it does stand out.

      Is there anything in particular you would like to know about it? I just recently got it but I can at least try to answer your questions : )
      Otherwise http://retrogaming.hazard-city.de/ should have you covered.

      • UltramanU says :

        Thanks for the prompt reply Ji-L87 !
        And indeed I have a ‘few’ questions for you. 🙂

        First I was wondering about the format conversion feature that allows the user to control the picture’s aspect ratio; can it help eliminating the black borders from a Megadrive or a PS2 signal for instance ?
        From what I read on this cool website you linked and the vigatec documentation there is a zoom feature but looks like it ‘adds’ lines instead of working like a simple overscan, which may mess up the original pixel art. I am afraid that would stand out while using the unit along with an SLG3000.

        Secondly; did you manage to get a stable 1080p picture through VGA or the DVI output ? Since the Dune F appears to be unreliable with tv-hd resolutions…
        Did you try it on your – excellent – AOC ?

        Finally I am really curious about how it fares compared to other top-of-the-line scalers in terms of picture clarity and precision, input lag, etc.
        I’ve had the opportunity to try older XRGB machines up to 3, the VP30 w/ abt102, and even the same old comm-tec device shown on that website which appears to be the vigatec’s ancestor and looked a lot like an xrgb-2 in terms of picture quality (okay but rather muddy).

        From the bits of reading here and there the Dune F seems to be the almost-perfect standalone ‘swiss army knife’ scaler for retrogaming.
        I know about the Frame Meister but honestly I am not really fond of the type of picture it gives, which looks too far away from the typical ’round but sharp’ low-res of tube tv or arcade monitor.

        To sum up I find the xrgb-2 too muddy, and the FM too sharp, and I hope the Dune F will be the end of my search.

        Thanks again for your time !

        • Ji-L87 says :

          Allright, let’s see what we can do…

          Aspect ratio & zoom:

          Sadly wasn’t able to get rid of the black borders from MD or PS 2. There was horizontal & vertical zoom options, although I didn’t find them that very helpful. There was also horizontal & vertical size. Increasing that more than a few steps made me loose the image. The overscan option gave a similar result.

          1080p output:
          No, but 720p works. However, I just have it set to linedouble and passes the signal on to a VP30 for scaling to 1080p. I have yet to try it directly connected to any display.

          Scaler comparision:
          Sadly, I haven’t had the opportunity to experience any other devices other than the VP30 + ABT card & the Vigatec FX2+.

          I feel that the Dune is maybe not as sharp as the VP30 can be in game mode 2 but noticeable sharper than my TVs built in scaler,
          If you want, I can try and take a close up picture (or pictures) of some game systems of choice?

          Personally, I like the emulated look of the XRGB mini I’ve seen online but the unit itself seems a bit too finicky to me. I’m aiming for a setup where everything just works, with minimal faffing about. Not really wanting to change settings just because I’m changing console, even if it would yield better results 😛

          • UltramanU says :

            Hi Ji-L87

            Sorry for the late reply, I was busy with work.
            Anyway thanks for the input and don’t bother taking pictures because I have actually grabbed one from ebay!

            Too intrigued by this machine to let go of the opportunity. ^^

            I don’t have much time to try it now since I have to leave for a few days tomorrow, but from a quick first look using a 60Hz modded MD2 I was surprised to see it display a clean 1080p picture on my TV via RGBHV>VGA.

            Right-out of the box picture seemed sharper compared to the old Comm-Tec but I have noticed many ‘enhancement’ features which I need to study.

            To be continued next week then!

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