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Do Funtastic consoles have better video display?; MegaMania has pics to prove it!
Topic Started: Dec 4 2012, 10:26 PM (41,674 Views)
Z890
Established Member
As others have mentioned, it seems to be simply increasing the sharpness (you can see lines/edges getting darker in the photos). I think this is a good thing myself. But my TV can change the sharpness easy enough.

Ive seen sharpness improvements for NTSC perfect dark over the PAL version (in this post recently on here), which made me wonder if the PAL coloured consoles were simply altered inside to give the SAME sharpness level as NTSC....however the NTSC perfect dark has other variables like higher texture detail...So I got out my passport plus to compare the same cartridge on PAL and NTSC consoles (unfortuately I cant get perfect dark to work with it)...

Done some tests and for starfox/lylat wars early PAL and early NTSC consoles look the same level of sharpness. I thought that maybe the NTSC had no extra sharpness due to it being harder to see with the extra thick black lines - but the NTSC starfox on a PAL console with passport plus looks the same as if it was running on a NTSC console and vice versa PAL cartridge the same detail on either console type - and PAL goldeneye on NTSC console with passport plus has no extra sharpness - In conclusion that means thats the early PAL and early NTSC consoles have the same level of sharpness output (both tested with s video, with a modded s video for PAL).

So...if the coloured PAL consoles show a sharper image, i would expect the later NTSC ones to do so to because both types start off as 'unsharpened' images for early console versions (with both ones having the same component changed later).

Im going to buy a coloured PAl console and see if changing my TV sharpness on an old console gives the SAME picture quality as the coloured console outputs. If its a case of Nintendo going cheap on parts then I expect no advantage to altering the TV setting (and it would mean that those later consoles are stuck on an (overly??) sharpened image which you could reduce but loose original picture detail...If it was Nintendo aiming to reduce the blur (i suspect thats the case as wouldnt cheaper parts make it more blurry?) then it might be a better image than you can get from altering the TV sharpness.

Edited by Z890, Dec 23 2012, 11:44 AM.
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Z890
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@mega mania,

if you increase your TV sharpness for the grey console, I wonder if that makes the exact same image quality as the colour console (sharpness on tv set to normal)?
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Z890
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Can someone explain why the following occurs on PAL machines? (Havent tried ntsc as only have a grey one)

I just tested a green and standard grey PAL machine. I used Super mario 64, by starting a game and when the games starts I paused both games and compared the castle etc on the pause screen. I have two super mario 64 games and could flick between each console straight away.

I have PAL nintendo composite leads and PAL modified S video leads.

First with compsoite:

The green machine definately gives greater sharpness.

Looking at S video: The standard grey and newer green consoles show no difference at all. Not one small degree of sharpness change, flicking between the tv inputs kept the pictures identical.


It seems as though the composite on the grey console is almost 'broken', as the s video improves this a lot. Meaning the level of sharpness that the n64 is producing internally is not being rendered on the tv with composite. Infact AFAIK s video and composite output for all devices (DVD movies etc) should output the same resolution i.e. same sharpness, but s video gives better stable images in many ways. Was this composite output really broken then?


It seems nintendo looked to rectify this issue by making the compsoite video on the green console sharper...however this sharpness has been increased more than was required to fix the issue, as it went SHARPER THEAN S VIDEO.

What it now does is create lines at edges of objects (see mario 64 pause screen - the star in top right has noticable edges due to this 'false' sharpness increase. (see this link to show what falsely increasing sharpness/edge enhancement does: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Usm-unsharp-mask.png)

I compared the compsoite on the green console with changing my tv sharpness settings:

1 - green console s video with tv at full sharpness on (top left shows slight white border around mario) = green console composite with tv at standard sharpness. This setting type may be giving some 'false' sharpness, but this looks good as it helps to sharpen th typical n64 blur.


2 - green console s video with standard tv sharpness shows no 'false' sharpness - no white border around mario.

3 - green console composite with full tv sharpness looks very jagged and the false sharpness is extremely noticable. large white border around mario icon in top left screen.


Conclusion - if you have a grey console, using s video will produce the same sharpness level as colour consoles with s video. I prefer to set my tv to maximum sharpness to get an even clearer image (which doesnt give too much edge enhancement on my tv at least)

do not use composite for grey consoles as is very blurry!...BROKEN???????

If using composite on colour consoles, keep the tv at standard sharpness and you get a good sharp image the same as a tv on full sharpness with s video (virtually identical). The disadvantage though to s video is other issues such as flickering and dot crawl and not so good colours cf s video.

If you want the sharpest image possible, you must use compsoite, not s video. And also set the tv to max sharpness...but then this gives a noticably false sharpness ('edge enhancement' is very high).


NB this sharpness with composite may be great for certain blurry games! I think its a good thing that they went overboard with the sharpness level. Downside with this option is your using the inferier composite signal.

IS IT POSSIBLE FOR THE COMPOSITE OUTPUT TO HAVE BEEN SHARPENED AND S VIDEO OUTPUT LEFT ALONE? I DONT KNOW ABOUT ELECTRONICS AND THE INTERNALS OF THE VIDEO CARD ETC SO MAYBE SOMEONE ELSE CAN SAY?

Edited by Z890, May 2 2013, 02:53 PM.
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Z890
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Not looked much into ntsc but my grey ntsc s video seems to be the same sharpness as my pal grey and pal green consoles.

so if bluedogrulez - your ntsc colour console shows greater sharpness (s video) than grey...maybe its like this in terms of sharpness quality from worse to best:

grey pal composite
grey ntsc composite
grey s video pal = coloured s video pal = Grey s video ntsc
coloured compsoite pal
coloured s video ntsc (NOT TESTED THIS ONE MYSELF)

have you compared the coloured consoles s video vs composite? has anyone else seen similar for pal (compsosite sharper than s video on coloured consoles - PAL AT LEAST)

Also how adid you test? If you have to keep unplugging leads to switch then its easy to not test correctly. I switched tv inputs and so switched straight away, so the above results are correct - that is they are correct for the consoles i tested at least. found that the mario 64 pause screen at the start is easy to compare difference too
Edited by Z890, May 4 2013, 11:55 AM.
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Z890
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I think to pick up subtle difference with sharpness etc is best to have the exact same info on screen -

eg for a racing game dont hit accelerate so car is in exact position. pause screens on games that dont fade out teh graphics are good too.

So if you do have 2 s video cables, at the end swap the cables around to confirm the results werent due to difference in cables/port quality.

in terms of the darkness you mentioned i didnt notice a brightness change on any setup -s video/composite/grey/colour console for pal....thats seperate to sharpness prehaps. interesting if thats occuring for ntsc, but could also be a pal modified s video cable (well, possibly).
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Z890
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@bluedogrulez - so your results are for NTSC, fair enough. Regarding PAL for the green console i noticed that the composite cable actually was sharper than the s video output....

However the main thing for PAL is that the green consoles s video was EXACTLY THE SAME AS THE GREY s video in every way including sharpness. And that the grey composite was quite blurry, whereas the green consoles composite was sharp (as i stated above, sharper than s video.....EDIT...S VIDEO (PAL GREY AND ALSO PAL COLOURED CONSOLES) CAN BE MADE TO THE SAME SHARPNESS BY SIMPLY INCREASING SHARPNESS ON THE TV. DOING THIS FOR THE COLOURED PAL COMPOSITE MAKES IT TOO SHARP AS ITS ALREADY BEEN SHARPENED TO A MAXIMUM LEVEL, ABOVE WHICH AN INFERIOR IMAGE IS SEEN WHERE MORE SHARPNESS CAUSES THE PICTURE TO LOSE INFORMATION AND LOOK BAD....artificially sharp as seen by lines on edges of objects becoming too dark and thick, and text being of poor quality.

@shadow_zero: to answer your questions:

1 - my s video green console does have s video (in that my CRT tv indicates it as s video and that the output is exactly the same as the grey s video appearance, with no 'dot crawl' of colours, as expected from s video output. composite on grey and green consoles have dot crawl.)

2 - my PAL early console (grey bought in 1997) has great s video (same as green console, no hatch pattern)

3 - so no, the green console has no improvement in s video compared to the grey s video....SO IF YOU HVE A GREY CONSOLE JUST USE S VIDEO AND THEN YOU DONT NEED A COLOURED CONSOLE. FOR PAL AT LEAST

4 - only used my n64 on an LCD once but i thought it looked no worse than with my CRT.

@shadow_zero - i didnt know french consoles couldnt output s video...you are using pal modified s video i assume?


....I wonder if any PAL owners can also verify the green console (or any coloured one) having sharper composite than the svideo , and also that the s video is not improved over the grey s video.

The main point of this thread is answered by quite a few people, that coloured consoles give a sharper COMPOSITE output....but I think the following is still unclear:

how does PAL compare to NTSC in the coloured consoles
how does s video and/or compsosite in coloured consoles compare to the RGB modded grey consoles
i.e. which is the best hardware for the best output?




Edited by Z890, Jul 19 2013, 11:03 PM.
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Z890
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@BlueDogrulez

If you are using a cable that has on the end of it AV and s video outputs, some from ebay just output in AV (apparently). i.e they have an s video jack but infact the entire cable simply runs a composite feed (1 channel) and doesnt split the signal into the two channels of s video. I presume you are using a purely s video cable though? Is it stamped with the Nintendo logo so that its an official snes/n64 or gamecube NTSC lead to be more certain of a proper s video 2 channel output?

If the sharpness for NTSC is the same for composite and s video that could make sense as Nintendo knew s video was an option for the USA....so when they sharpened the compssite NTSC image, it would be logical that they also sharpened up the s video image to the same amount....BUT the dot crawl etc that I see in composite for PAL, that I dont see using S video, should also be the case for you....? ( N.B True S video is available for the N64, have you any sources to say otherwise?)

Surely you can see dot crawl on your composite green console but not in s video????? Look at bright reds on various games on non-moving images, in composite, as i think dot crawl is often noticable there.

-------

Finally, regarding PAL VS NTSC coloured consoles, noone has yet compared the sharpness levels of these..but deducing from info in this thread...

You say that composite AND ALSO s video SHARPNESS for NTSC has been improved with the coloured console....and I saw that it was only for the composite in PAL that there was extra sharpening (prehaps Nintendo ignored the s video sharpening in PAL as it wasnt officially supported, as it needed a modified s video cable to avoid an over bright image)....Fortunately the grey s video (and coloured s video ) PAL console have the same level of sharpness as the improved PAL coloured composite output IF THE TV SHARPNESS VALUE IS INCREASED (to max in my case on my CRT)....This appears to be an identical image quality with no loss of detail due to this edge enhancemnet c.f. coloured consoles, suggesting that the tv sharpness option is simply what Nintendo applied to there coloured consoles INTERNALLY....Not a bad thing unless done too much, as it is what digital cameras do when you take a photo when it saves as a jpeg - to make the image pop better by making the bright areas brighter, and dark areas darker. BTW Edge enhancement/sharpening doesnt recover lost detail, it makes the current detail stand out more. In the case of the N64 thats a good thing.

IF you increased the tv sharpness for PAL coloured console composite (and i supsect therefore for the NTSC coloured consoles composite AND s video - Maybe someone can test??) you get too much sharpness, so the limit is the default tv value in this case from my tests.


summary of sharpness level from worse to best:

grey pal composite - noticably blurry compared to the below options.
grey ntsc composite
grey s video pal = coloured s video pal = Grey s video ntsc
coloured composite PAL = coloured composite NTSC = coloured s video NTSC = grey s video PAL with tv sharpness increased = coloured svideo PAL with tv sharpness increased = grey s video NTSC with tv sharpness increased = MAXIMUM N64 SHARPNESS BEFORE NOTICING INFERIOR IMAGE QUALITY DUE TO TOO MUCH EDGE ENHANCEMENT ...(which shows nintendo set the sharpness to the very max possible in these coloured consoles).

And of these above options, where composite and s video have the same increased sharpness, choosing s video in preference is better for other image quality such as reduced dot crawl etc. So the same image quality and sharpness level as coloured consoles can be achieved in both PAL AND NTSC consoles in the old grey consoles by changing tv settings.The coloured consoles though give the extra option of being fully sharp (for COMPOSITE ONLY IN PAL) at standard tv settings, so you can go and OVER-SHARPEN using the tv settings...which might be good for SOME blurry games...definately bad for reading text in game and not good for all the games I've tested so far.


@shadow_zero - For poor image quality seen by shadow zero on his French console : If you notice a hash pattern this is likely due to having a poor quality cable with poor shielding (not the inability of PAL or NTSC consoles to output s video.....unless it is just French consoles that have s video issues???).....I notice you said that it was a duller colour in s video mode....On my CRT to select s video mode I have to select the scart number 2, but then also press the scart output button on my remote a second time for it to recognise that the scart is recieving s video and not composite....if I dont do this the image is all messed up and i get a dull and very poor picture...could It be that you are not switching your tv signal to s video correctly in the same way????......Are you connecting directly to an s video input on your tv or are you connecting via scart input (possibly with an s video to scart adapter)...if it a scart input, not all scarts on tvs recognise s video...usually if you have two scarts, the first scart does rgb and composite and the second doesnt do rgb but does composite and sometimes s video.

Edited by Z890, Jul 19 2013, 11:07 PM.
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Z890
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For the reasons i posted above its quite likely nintendo sharpened the ntsc s video signal as well as composite- while only sharpening the pal composite.

But based on you saying your cable is a combined composite and s video there is a good chance when you are using s video you are in fact seeing composite quality. Because you say the appearances are same/similar. Possible your cable has one channel with at the end only, a 2 channel s video output.

Can anyone else confirm with seperate s video only cable? Also i would suggest buying a seperate s video from a good seller if your interested in getting the best picture possible..ps on composite can you see some Dot crawl? Then check s video output as you should see no dot crawl (unless have interference).


Dont know of a nintendo first party s video for ntsc, there were third party sellers at the time but for ntsc you have the option to find a snes or gamecube original s video too...i know of a uk seller that 100% guarentee sells true s video whether pal modified or ntsc.... http://www.consolegoods.co.uk/. ..but postage would be extra for abroad....

Ps. Info on ninteno cable compatibility, see the table:

http://www.gamesx.com/wiki/doku.php?id=av:nintendomultiav
Also this brightness increase you have mentioned...i only see sharpness increase...this to me tells me of possible poor quality cable (but its strange that the brightness varies from grey to green console)...as as example with pal the sole reason for needing to
Modify s video cables is to avoid an overly bright image.

Be good to see if anyone else or you getting a new s video and new seperate composite cable gives for coloured NTSC console:


1- S video extra sharpness
2 - composite and s video extra brightness

Seems your the person whos actively checking this out for NTSC and i can answer questions for PAL so hope you can get some good cables.
Edited by Z890, Jul 22 2013, 04:04 PM.
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Z890
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Here, a reputable store for NTSC s video and have seen good reviews online from others about this particular cable:

http://www.racketboy.com/store/featured/nintendo-svideo-cables.html

For AV composite cables, you can find official ones off ebay easily, (NTSC ones from USA sellers and PAL ones from UK sellers unless your unlucky and the sellers selling there import items).


(...I just checked online to see how cheap SOME cables can be....I can get a composite cable off ebay from China for 1.02 or $1.57 with free shipping included....But as NTSC and PAL cables vary internally theres a high chance of getting an overly bright image...The quality of these cables must be as poor as you can possibly imagine with interference etc)

Edited by Z890, Jul 22 2013, 05:38 PM.
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Z890
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Quote:
 
Technically the EUR models are missing components on the pcb which clarifies the bad quality for s-video and composite in comparison to the NTSC models (yes, Nintendo screwed PAL countries AGAIN).


---correct but no big deal as Pal regions can get s video cables that have components added - as Nintendo did on purpose to region lock the snes, n64 and gamecube.

From reading theories uncluding from the previous poster link83 on other places it seems that early French models were due to have the RGB connected (and in doing so the s video would not be present!), but this feature was removed prehaps so that people couldnt complain in other european countries of different quality signals (or when nintendo released that most newer french tvs could also recieve the standard pal signal ok without needing rgb to work with the secam signal)....meaning the (early?) french ones were left with also no potential s video!!! but people havent really got s video signals in pal until recently as composite or RF was the standard.

Quote:
 
@Z890: What would you like to confirm? I have s-video/composite combined cables as well.


-----So this may be your issue with the signal quality. You can only discount this by purchasing a proper s video cable as well :-/ In other words get a s video cable that is not composite as well, only s video....and from a reputable seller like i listed on my previous post or two (i listed a usa seller and a uk seller for PAL modified cables...although i see now he is only selling the combined cables now but these will be true s video as he is a proven seller).


What do I want to confirm....I'm hoping bluedog or someone else with a coloured funtastic NTSC console can answer my questions in my last couple of posts..

Quote:
 
@bluedogrulez: can you compare video quality of a NTSC console with a PAL console?


I have done so for a lot of variations and listed in abive posts...im just missing the colour ntsc console though...I can at least for grey vs grey ntsc and pal consoles...heres a prime example: both using s video cables, both with banjo tooie and they look EXACTLY THE SAME - sharpness, textures etc (minus the reduced lines of resolution that the ntsc version has...but pal with worse framerate unfortuantely......regarding video quality output both systems give equal quality s video)..
oh and regarding NTSC video OFFICIAL CABLES.....(gamecube that works for snes and n64):

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/310685882608?ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1439.l2649

not many hours left in thi reduced sale price...


also serach on ebay: SHVC-009 for some new one with boxes

shadow zero yes i believe nintendo did also do a n64 packaging version, but seems that most are gamecube labelled (makes no difference).
Edited by Z890, Jul 29 2013, 01:37 PM.
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Z890
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Quote:
 
the s-video on my JAP N64 looks great with every cable. On my EUR N64 it does not look so good.


This is because you do not have PAL s video modified cables. You probably have also purchased NTSC composite cables as well - It is not just the PAL s video cables that are different to NTSC ones.

How to know if you have the right cables? -

1 - Buy from consolegoods.co.uk - For s video and composite
2 - If buying from ebay do not buy s video cables if you need pal ones! Only go here for composite. Do not buy new cables as these will be from china most likely and will be made for ntsc consoles. Try to get official composite PAL cables that are stamped as nintendo, from someone selling their PAL n64 collection.

I'm reposting this link about nintendo pal vs ntsc cable variations:

http://www.gamesx.com/wiki/doku.php?id=av:nintendomultiav

Quote:
 
The composite cables are the same as NTSC N64/SNES


No. See the link above. See the table that refers to compsoite and s video ntsc as 'straight through to display'. PAL snes and n64 require components to the cables...of which compsoite cables were freely available at the time of course.... s video were i think only made in japan and mail order in america...i.e. not Pal compatible, so need to modify them.

Quote:
 
I have my doubts http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/310685882608?ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1439.l2649 is an official s-video cable. Looks exactly like mine, which I got from Play-Asia...


These are official cables but remember they are not pal modified, they are for ntsc only. i was suggesting these for use on ntsc consoles only. Why do i know they are official cables?

1 - they are good quality but they do look used and not made recently at all. infact out of two i bought one had bent s video connectors, so im sending it back....shows they are used and therefore old cables.
2 - they have nintendo stamped on them
3 - hit-japan ebay seller is a reputable seller (after reading various forums), other retro collectors buy from this seller a lot.
4 - same appearance as actual box photos found when searching SHVC-009..i.e. same number of grooves on the cables etc, same colour....you get the idea

Quote:
 
What I will try as well is test with the composite cable. I recall that looks the same between my JAP and EUR N64, but I'm not sure.


What about varaiations in games...are you comparing the same games? What if the games have slight differences due to being pal optimised...you need to use games that are full screen pal conversions as this is easier to compare the image quality on each part of the screen....but for a game such as perfect dark, the pal version has more lines of resolution yet slightly reduced textures from my tests....so you can never be sure of a perfect comparison....Banjo tooie has the same texture detail for pal and ntsc though. However if the games are full screen pal versions then you can compare them well enough to deduce any differences in the s video or composite output of the consoles, especially if you compare a range of games....do you have games in both pal and ntsc regions?

Also grey pal n64 has more blur on composite compared with my usa grey ntsc console....so likely the same for your japan one.....regarding testing its always worth more people testing things like this and posting back though but get a pal composite and pal s video cable first (and use s video on your pal n64 that is not the french one as we know it doesnt do s video).

what is missing as far as i am concerned is not comparisons between pal and ntsc GREY consoles, and not comparisons between pal grey and pal coloured consoles......it is comparisons between:

1 - coloured pal vs coloured ntsc consoles - composite and s video
2 - ntsc grey vs ntsc coloured consoles, composite and s video


and using proper s video as not sure any tests have been with true s video cables after reading this forum thread.
Edited by Z890, Jul 30 2013, 06:38 PM.
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Z890
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@shadow...Oh i realise what you are saying now about the gamecube vs snes/n64 composite cable...Yes although there is a difference with the cables there is no issues seen as scrolling through the link you showed also confirms by quoting nintendo themselves on the matter.

regarding what is seen with ntsc cables on pal systems...what you get is a brighter image on screen...as i have bothe pal and ntsc cables to confirm.

Quote:
 
I didn't notice any more blur with the grey PAL console. Is that both with composite and s-video?


I noticed that for pal grey vs coloured console the grey console composite is very blurry...the coloured console fixes this and it is quite sharp! (thats what this thread started about)....But Pal grey vs coloured s video is the same level of sharpness....which is not blurry like the grey composite paland slightly less sharp than the coloured composite pal....

SO TO WELSHBIE....you say that the coloured console using pal modified s video is sharp.....is that in comparison to the grey composite or the grey s video? could you test both noting the above paragraph and see if you get the same or different results (my grey and coloured consoles in pal have exactly the same s video quality it is just the composite grey that was very blurry, which got 'corrected' by nintendo)

p.s the grid line interference you see is just thta...interference...from external electronic devices of which there are lots around wifi etc, microwaves....or the cable itslef not being well shielded....out of interest from console goods, did you get the individual s video cable or it it combines with composite....maybe best to leave coposite unplugged if not in use and vice versa?? i see no interference at all on my crt 32 inch 50hz tv for s video (composite gives the expected very very slight degredation you can observe close up that is synonomous with composite).
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Z890
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Quote:
 
My PAL Funtastic console is giving a slightly sharper picture in comparison to my older charcoal grey console with just composite cables. Its not much, but with composite's inherent quality being so ridiculously low to start with, it makes a notable difference on the TV screen.



The difference I see from compsoite grey PAL to compsoite coloured console pal is quite a lot....from blurry to, basically not blurry at all (just low textures but not blurry if that makes any sense at all)!

That makes me wonder what colour console you have? Mine is green and gves great sharpness...see earlier posts on this thread, i think its (just?) the ice blue funtastic console that may at least in some cases be no sharper than the grey pal console. Due to possibly using up old grey console stock parts prehaps.
Edited by Z890, Aug 7 2013, 03:02 PM.
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Z890
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@bluegodrules,

did you consider getting n original ntsc s video cable or at least one from a supplier that isnt giving you fake 1 signal composite?...to then be able to test some questions regarding your ntsc stuff across the pond from me?
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Z890
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i wonder if some old grey consoles are worse than others....so where i see a large increase in quality you see a smaller one......

perception of increase is subjective (think thats the right word!)....you see it improve and thats what i do so no contradiction.......and also you seem to now be suggesting that the s video from grey to coloured console prehaps is no different...like i saw....unless i have mistaken your comments?

p.s. still, you should just get another second hand crt for cheap :-)


pps the reason i bought the green one and not any of the other ones like grape purple is that im colour blind and couldnt be sure that the ones i were seeing on ebay werent the ice blue one...too many blue type consoles
Edited by Z890, Aug 7 2013, 03:39 PM.
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Z890
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:-( i still doubt that your cable is true s video...

i might get a ntsc coloured console sometime to then post on here a full comparison of grey vs colour for pal and ntsc...

but will be costly when there must be a lot of other people on here with coloured ntsc consoles and confirmed s video cables (i.e. genuine nintendo ones), seeing as its a dedicated forum? :eh:
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Z890
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WHERE I SAID BEFORE THAT PAL COLOURED COMPOSITE IS SHARPER THAN S VIDEO....IT IS BUT NOT BY AS MUCH AS WOULD BE RELEVANT MENTIONING - SEEMS ITS ESSENTIALLY IDENTICAL...ONLY AN ALLMOST UNNOTICEABLE DIFFERENCE....so seems that bluedogrulez suggesting his NTSC coloured console composite and s video is identical is also the same situation for pal consoles....

@Bluedogrulez, maybe i jumped to conclusions thinking you dont have true s video due to some unexpected results....However there is on pal vs ntsc a difference that is still puzzling...

For pal, going from grey to coloured console, the s video remains absolutely unchanged

For ntsc i believe you said going from grey to coloured console, the s video is improved in sharpness (and composite to the same level).

Well I have a grey ntsc console and that s video sharpness is the same as my pal grey and coloured console....Would suggest that:

for ntsc, the level of sharpness of s video and composite was equally boosted above the originla s video levels,

but for:

pal the level of sharpness was kept at the original pal s video level and composite was made to be the same (slightly greater but only one notch sharpness increase out of 7 on my crt)

I can't see how the image quality of n64 games can be boosted above what i see in pal coloured composite or s video without seeing a decline in image quality due to edge sharpness...because i already see edge sharpness in the form of dark lines (pal coloured consoles) on the sides of text and many edges, which would be too excessive if sharpness increased more.

Can you confirm that your ntsc S VIDEO has sharper (or brighter etc as you said before) levels in your coloured console than your grey one....And regarding the brightness change, this should not be any different as that would simply suggest a component addition/subtraction in the cable or console?????
Edited by Z890, Dec 18 2013, 06:33 PM.
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Z890
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Quote:
 
My test was racing the Docklands track in Roadster for about an hour on the grey/s-cable. Total darkness. Frustrated, i switched the unit out for the jungle/s-cable. And then there was light! Imagine brighter and crisper.

You seem to suggest that the s video grey to coloured console gave not just sharpness increase, but also made th image brighter...

The thing is my grey pal, grey ntsc and coloured pal console have perfect levels of brightness...if they are increased on ntsc coloured console, that would be too bright?

Heres one way of checking brightenss....on perfect dark, the opening screens you see a black screen. If your console is using the correct cable (specifically for pal users wondering if they have ntsc composite or s video cables) then you will see a fully black background.....if you increase the tv brightness setting only a slight amount, this background immediately starts to grey out......

so bluedog, if your coloured ntsc console s video has increased brightness, then with perfect dark you will see this grey background i described, suggesting that the brightenss is not what was intended by the the game deveopers and will be too washed out (not improved unless for your roadsters example the game was badly programmed and too dark to begin with).


P.s for completeness - additionally, if your n64 cables are producing a too dark image on screen, using the perfect dark example, if you slightly increaee your tv brightness you will not see the black background change to a lighter one immediately as you will need to adjust your brightness more than a notch or too.
Edited by Z890, Aug 12 2013, 12:02 PM.
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Z890
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ok fair enough, im not specifically asking you to check stuff...just throwing the info and questions out there for others too...if anyones interested or not i dont know.

Just puzzles me - these two things based on what I have observed:

1 - strange that extra brightenss over ntsc grey console can equal BETTER brightness (generally speaking for all games not just roadsters)..rather than being washed out.

2 - Likewise i can't see how extra sharpness over ntsc grey console s video can equal BETTER sharpness.
Rather than being too edge sharpened. Ntsc grey console s video is sharper already (compared to comsposite), admittedly the composite sharpness was increased for the better like with Pal.


Of course people might think that the sharpness can easily afford to be sharper but you can only sharpen an original image so much before it degrades in quality...noticed by 'edge sharpness' becoming too distinct and detail actually being lost.


When something is sharpened, what is happening is the dark areas are made darker (eg edges to objects), and the lighter areas are made lighter.....


I wonder if this is what you mean when you say you saw a BRIGHTER (and crisper image)....

Its difficult to compare by words when in entirely different countries.....but i am starting to think that this is what you observed. So not a brightness increase where the entire picture is increased in luminance/intensity by the coloured ntsc console...but simply the trickery that is called edge enhancement (sharpness).
Edited by Z890, Aug 12 2013, 12:36 PM.
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@Shadow_Zero

you shouldnt have to open the cables to see the difference in brightness between pal and ntsc cables....if you cant see the difference it might mean you dont have both cables...prehaps you only have ntsc cables. the difference is very noticable in all games when i switch cables and compare.

you can reduce the tv brghtness to compensate though, which seems to then look exactly as it should do....an n64 image thats over-bright looks very washed out and poor quality, but you would only know if you also had the darker image to compare it to.
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will try to be more succinct than my previous posts!!

search on ebay for s video code....SHVC-009.....thats the official n64 s video cable for USA and Japan N64. For uk you need pal modified ones (http://www.consolegoods.co.uk/). for NTSC cheaper ones than official also use that site http://www.consolegoods.co.uk/ other ones via eg ebay may be fake and only composite.

Regarding s video being better than composite...this whole thread was about the fact that certain coloured consoles improved the composite sharpness...meaning that if you have that certain coloured type console your composite signal will essentially be as sharp as s video (and other aspects of the video quality be nearly the same as were talking low res retro games either way)

if you have a grey n64 then you will be seeing a blurry image if you are using composite (especially if PAL console), but upgrade to s video with a grey pal or ntsc console and it will be as good as having a composite or s video coloured console. (maybe for ntsc the s video is further imporoved if going from grey to coloured console according to bluedogs posts.....the only console i dont have is coloured ntsc console to check.)

ive got all the pal/ntsc grey/coloured consoles (minus coloured ntsc), official and modified lead, crt tv etc so have tested the above. its not a subjective thing its quite clear (most notibly very blurry grey pal console with composite...not with s video...and not blurry compsosite or s video coloured console). wonder why theres not a consensus view on this - maybe its that people are using random ebay fake leads that throw in a lot of variables as well as HD tvs that alter the image by upscaling (that may upscale compsoite and s video signals to a different quality level depending on the tv encoding system).

@bluedogrulez
Quote:
 
I am of the opinion that the N64 does not have s-video output
...i think your statement is regarding your observation of your coloured console compsoite vs s video looking essentially identical....which as i say above is what i observe too...but s video does make a difference for grey consoles compared with composite....it it just that the coloured consoles composite signal has been sharpened to give a quality just like s video (sharpness wise at least, but inferior in that you get some flicker and colour seperation is worse etc if you want to be picky), its not that s video is not available for the n64.....

am i right in saying that if the above is true then previous posts on here of differing observations all tie in and kinda make sense?????
Edited by Z890, Dec 18 2013, 07:09 PM.
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@shadowzero - also from reading elsewhere from link83, i believe some(?) early french consoles had no s video. So your saying some later revisions dont either. Its safe to say that the mAjority of consoles do have s video though (ie the grey consoles and many coloured ones). My grey pal and grey ntsc - and green pal console do have s video for example (signal comes through plus is better than composite).

@bluedogrulz - possibly you do have s video but is not easy to detect (as the coloured consoles composite are also sharp)...Also wouldnt you see a black screen or obvious distorted picture - if your using a cable that is ONLY s video - if s video wasnt being piped through it?....However, it is easier to detect if you use your grey console......as the composite signal in that will be more blurry than s video signal. i bet if you compare composite and svideo in the grey console you will see that s video is functioning and is an improvement. Whether your official s video and unofficial one show different quality on grey console is another question).

...p.s. Ive stated previously that for my pal green console i also saw that the composite is vastly improved (over grey console) that it pretty much matches the quality of s video (strangely enough it is possibly a slight fraction sharper than s video - but has some dot crawl effects that composite is known for). I wont describe that info in detail again though its on previous posts.
Edited by Z890, Feb 24 2014, 09:30 PM.
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@martin - I dont think pal is sharper than ntsc...more screen lines, but not sharper. If anything, games have to be pal converted, and in doing so due to having extra resolution, the frame rate would be reduced unless there is some optimisation....most likely by reducing some texture to some degree.

regarding the darkness/cross hatching....you must have a tv that can output s video (if you have two Av scarts, its usually just one of them, the second one - AV2 - that can do s video. As well as you might have actual s video inputs.

You also need the correct cables as you said (pal or ntsc). both types can be got here

http://www.consolegoods.co.uk/

dont trust ebay as you dont know what internals are like in the cables, unless you have known ones to compare to (compare brightness is a good method....Ntsc cable on pal is too bright...i actually find that pal cables on ntsc dont affect it, i dont know why. must be some reason)

Also if you are using ntsc in pal regions, your tv has to be ntsc compatible, ie able to switch (often automatically) to 60hz.Most do, even CRTs).

@retroRGB:

For Pal consoles my observations:

i find that the funtastic (most types - see earlier posts by others) raise the sharpness of the composite up to the s video levels.

s video is unchanged. Therefore I guess RGB would also be unchanged. I believe that the sharpness change was only done as a conscious effort to improve the composite that was seen as blurry. S video and RGB are not blurry. The only limits they have (and now funtastic composite also) is the level of sharpness due to the programming of each game, limited by the hardware. Which varies from developer to developer of course.

P.s any more sharpness and you lose detail described in this link:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edge_enhancement

Having said that I use s video (grey or green console no difference), and do also increase my tv sharpness to max (however this is only a small change infact although helps a lot if you have composite on a grey console only). Increasing sharpness more wouldn't make it look better.
Edited by Z890, Mar 1 2014, 10:06 AM.
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Pal does have a higher resolution. So more clarity ie more detail with less pixelation along object edges. But not sharper...different meanings.

See my point (4) below regarding perception of sharpness (otherwise called edge enhancement). If you have a HDTV then maybe pal detail just as sharp or sharper. If you have a crtv showing scan lines, maybe the detail in ntsc APPEARS sharper.

What I was saying though is if they optimise so the speed is also just as fast as NTSC, as well as increasing resolution, then they have to compromise elsewhere to account for higher resolution.

So perhaps they do in textures? (Like you might do in the graphics options of a PC game to run well on an ageing computer). Its usually reduce textures and/or resolution, or the framerate suffers. I'm only supposing, although I have seen very slightly less textures in perfect dark. Or at least that the fade in of textures as you get closer to an object...you have to walk closer to an object in the PAL version to see the same texture detail. Only very slightly closer, and the texture difference is only very miniscule.

Have not seen in any game (including perfect dark) where it is practicably noticeable unless you are basically stopping and pixel searching. I think there is no difference at all in textures in most games I've done comparisons of.

I suppose also though that if pal games are released later, which is often the case, they have more time to optimise the engine without any (noticeable) downsides to this.

I think most PAL games (if optimised to fill the screen) - due to this higher resolution come across as:

1 just as sharp (textures), (except see point 4 below) and

2 more detail (as more lines filling screen). And mainly:

3 smoother image- less pixelation on objects.

4- thinner scan lines. not necessarily good or bad. But NTSC thicker scan line can actually give a good retro style clarity to the image by defining each line with a thick, clear black line above and below, giving a feeling of sharpness (as increasing sharpness -called edge enhancement- in things like photoshop does this also by adding black lines around edges). Only useful on crt tvs as HDTVS just fill in these lines - or if using a device to add them on hdtvs.


I think the main advantage of higher resolution in pal is that in split screen multiplayer (eg goldeneye) you see more detail as each object has more lines... = more pixels per enemy character.


I think the higher resolution in pal is definitely an advantage where the Pal games don't have to up-res games as much as NTSC on HD TVs. Ignoring full HD, talking of a respectable 720 HD resolution...pal 576 doesnt seem so far off 720 (80 percent of 720) compared to NTSC 480 (67 percent of 720) that the upscaler would have to add.
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Madbullbunny
Quote:
 
OEM S-video gets you the crisp look and also no checkering


Same as my findings...that s video on grey consoles gives a sharp image (not when using composite though)...in the same way as the coloured consoles do using either s video or composite.


I found that non OEM s video cables work too just as well, but then maybe i have a good source for them that are true s video and shielded well so no checkering. plus you must use the correct s video versions...Pal or ntsc,

regarding a previous post by someone about requesting photos...sorry it really is not easy to show via photos. Even if you get some kind of capture card, seeing the photos online only cause them to upscale so not a true comparison...theres plenty of different people on this thread that you can base your questions on....some conflicting info too but then you can always test it yourself and post on here.
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Z890
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Quote:
 

S-video has a undesirable 'smearing effect' that blurs the image


This thread shows the opposite. S video sharpens the image, it doesn't blur it. I see no loss of quality with the colour console. If anything I imagine as parts become cheaper in a consoles life, nintendo could improve the image quality.

Its not correct to say that s video is the same as composite. To quote wikipedia: By separating the black-and-white and coloring signals, it achieves better image quality than composite video.

Composite is fine on n64 coloured consoles though...not due to speculating, but by comparing them myself.

Quote:
 
I have a feeling that using RGB on these funtastic consoles would expose the image to the point of it being too pixellated due to the inferior anti aliasing


...For my Pal consoles I don't see a change in any image quality such as anti analising,sharpness etc...for the s video signal...just the composite signal between the grey and coloured consoles....so if s video image quality on coloured consoles is the same as the original grey consoles i don't think RGB will be different either (neither better or worse). Its as though the overly blurry composite signal was 'fixed' and nothing else. (whereas in contrast my NTSC grey console composite signal wasn't so blurry so that needed less 'fixing' to bring up to s video sharpness levels.


p.s. you say you compared images from this thread....its far better to see it in person.

sorry for being a broken record!
Edited by Z890, Aug 23 2014, 05:06 PM.
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@andykara2003,

what you say makes sense and is worth considering RGB. I take your word for it as you have been able to compare the variations with leads etc.

@Travii, thanks for testing and what you say entirely matches what i saw (for pal consoles, and yes that website to get s video for pal is great)

you confirmed that.....s video being just as good on the grey consoles (so people dont have to upgrade unless using composite)....and of course the composite improving for (at least some versions of) coloured consoles

but thats for PAL...yet on this thread for NTSC consoles, bluedogruelz said:


Quote:
 
I tested my jungle green today using s-video and composite connections. No difference detected.


That last statement I agree with for my PAL tests like his NTSC, as the s video and composite are very similar due to composite improvements on the coloured console (maybe the composite being very slightly sharper than s video, artificially so, with some artifacts compared to s video - but not anything detrimental as the sharper the better up to a point imo for n64 games)...but he also said:


Quote:
 
I have played my grey NTSC console with an S-Video, and it produces an INFERIOR display than my NTSC Jungle Green (Rev 8.0) with an S-Video.


If both statements are true then that means the NTSC coloured consoles bump up s video a notch too, and also the composite if they look the same......which would mean the PAL funtastic consoles only bring the composite up to basically the s video standard, whereas NTSC ones go a step further for s video and composite......closer to RGB standard? at least a bit closer (im not saying RGB isnt the best though).

Would be good to have others testing NTSC consoles as Travii and I seem to have got matching results but for PAL only.

As a side note i wonder what the developers (and also the reviewers like IGN/gamespot) used to view the games....whether they had better outputs (on a pc for developers?) like rgb and where seeing quality visuals before the general public were downgraded to aerial or composite (grey console)
Edited by Z890, Sep 28 2014, 05:50 PM.
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Z890
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You finding that RGB is just as good on standard coloured consoles is in line with me seeing that the standard s video is no different (just as sharp etc) as my pal green funtastic console.

No need to get funtastic if you are using s video or rgb then it seems. Funtastic only improved the composite sharpness. Seeing as many tvs now leave out s video but composite is usually supported having a funtastic for composite use (if you havent got it rgb modded) is worth while for tv compatibility.
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Z890
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Yes for my observation in PAL only. NTSC I havent tested and remember you did say that before.

Dont know if i have 8 or 8.1 revision funtastic in pal but its definately the improved version that sharpens composite massively.
Edited by Z890, Nov 5 2015, 08:47 AM.
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