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Best way to enjoy the N64 on HDTV
Topic Started: Jan 16 2014, 12:29 PM (61,359 Views)
Kobeskillz
Established Member
Hi Guys,

My 1st time posting here! Just found this amazing site yesterday.

I have an HDTV and wanted to know what gives me the best picture quality when I plug in my N64.

It know composite will look like crap.

Suggestions?
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Harbert
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Newbie
Grizzmeister
Jan 16 2014, 12:32 PM
Here in the U.S. all the cool kids use S-Video. :)

Here in Europe all the cool kids use RGB-SCART on CRT:s. ;)

Anyways, if you are really serious about getting the best picture on HDTVs, then I'd consider getting a SLG-in-a-Box from ArcadeForge. Yes it's quite expensive, but does a wonderful job both upscaling and generating scanlines.

Here's a video of it in action: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nSQ3lmE6UuY

danikei
Jan 18 2014, 02:21 PM
then a bang & olufsen mx4000 or mx6000. I'd go for the b&o before the trinitron only because it has a nicer design & doesn't look that dated nowadays.
I'm still looking for a cheap pvm, though, & thinking in getting a b&o. Crts look so much better than upscaling to hd.

I own a mx6000! Nothing compares to the authentic feel of real CRT-TVs. :)
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danikei
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Grizzmeister
 
... if you are really serious about getting the best picture on HDTVs, then I'd consider getting a SLG-in-a-Box from ArcadeForge.
[...]
I own a mx6000! Nothing compares to the authentic feel of real CRT-TVs. :)

The slg-in-a-box seems a cheaper alternative to the framemeister, have you tried it? I read that the scaler is not as good, but I'd like to see impressions, specially on 3d content. From youtube videos scanlines on lcd screens always seem dull, or not bright enough.

Also, I'm deciding whether to buy or not an mx6000 for 100eur, would you say its worth it? Seller won't make it cheaper because the remote control itself is quite expensive.
In the meantime I'm also looking for a pvm or bvm, but they are quite expensive where I live :(

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Grizzmeister
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Latter-day Nostradamus
I'm lucky enough to have a 20 inch CRT TV in my bonus room for my legacy game consoles like the SNES and N64.

Posted Image

If I didn't, however, I probably wouldn't spend a fortune for an upscaler but would instead dedicate a PC to run emulated games on an HDTV. It just makes more sense to do that and provides the added benefit of allowing some games like Super Smash Bros.(N64) to be played on-line against others.

BTW, here's my gaming setup that allows me to play the Wii Virtual Console versions of my favorite N64 software on a HDTV in progressive scan.

Posted Image
Edited by Grizzmeister, Sep 21 2017, 01:46 PM.
"All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident." - Arthur Schopenhauer

Posted Image
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Kobeskillz
Established Member
I used to have a Sony CRT tv back in the day. Beautiful set but heavy as hell and took up way to much room.

Wish I had room to keep it back in the day.

Older consoles look like garbage on HDTV's. Makes me a sad panda.
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Harbert
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danikei
Jan 20 2014, 04:54 AM
The slg-in-a-box seems a cheaper alternative to the framemeister, have you tried it? I read that the scaler is not as good, but I'd like to see impressions, specially on 3d content. From youtube videos scanlines on lcd screens always seem dull, or not bright enough.

Also, I'm deciding whether to buy or not an mx6000 for 100eur, would you say its worth it? Seller won't make it cheaper because the remote control itself is quite expensive.
In the meantime I'm also looking for a pvm or bvm, but they are quite expensive where I live :(

I've never tried a slg-in-a-box myself. You can toggle the scanlines on and off if you want to.

At 100, I'd have a hard time justifying that. I got my beovision with the remote for roughly 45, the chassis itself looks really good - but the picture quality isn't that much better compared to Sony Trinitron & Panasonic Quintrix tellies.
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madafsta123
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I sent a youtuber a message, Adam Korillak is his name if you have heard of him or not. He says he uses an S-video to component adapter to help him get the best quality on a HDTV
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Mantis128
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Wouldn't it look all stretched out on a newer TV? You're better of getting an old huge :donkey: 4:3 TV and two big speakers that's how N64 should be played.
https://twitter.com/Mantis128
http://ask.fm/Mantis128
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Mop it up
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Forum Urban Legend
Count me in with the plasma TV camp. Plasma is better than LCD in every way that counts, and it's crazy how much better it is at displaying SD content. They also have almost zero latency, there's still at least one frame since the NES lightgun won't work on it, but it isn't enough that I've ever felt it. Also, SD content scales better to 1080p than 720p, so N64 will look better on a 1080p TV than a 720p.

It's also worth trying to fiddle with the TV's settings to adjust the image, this can help it look better. I find that turning up the sharpness helps, and adjusting the contrast depending on the game can help reduce any "bleeding" that might happen with the colours. Changing the black level to "light" instead of "dark" also helps with some N64 games that use darker colours, making it difficult to see dark areas. The few games that support widescreen also look nice, and I like the extra viewing angle so it's worth it to play these games on my plasma over my CRT.
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Martin64
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I don't use any upscalers, nor do I have a fat-back CRT (I like having space). This is what I do on my old Samsung SyncMaster 2032MW (flat-panel LCD, 16:10 1050p);

- N64 connected via (very cheap) S-video cable.
- Sharpness right down almost as far as it would go. I toggled this down until the pixels just started to melt into each other.
- Brightness up a tad, since my cables make the picture a little darker.
- Contrast set somewhere just off the middle, getting a nice balance of light and dark. Nothing is 'murky' now. You can play Shadow Man without struggling to see things.
- Colour is set just above medium. The colours are nice and bright, but reds etc don't saturate badly. You can see all the shading on Mario's hat in the intro screen of SM64 (where you can play with his face).

All this will differ depending on your setup, of course. I don't provide the above so that you can replicate it 'as is' (which is why I didn't give actual numbers). Also, even if you had the exact same setup as me, your mileage will vary due to taste.

I would urge people to really play with their settings. Most TVs now will allow you to 'save' a channel with all it's settings. My old SyncMaster does! Perhaps try for an older LCD? The SyncMaster always had a kind of 'soft' image quality to it. This really helps with the N64. Still, I soften it even more with the settings. I like a nice blurry image with good colours that do not shimmer. I think going for clarity just ends up making your N64 look like LEGO with huge, clearly-defined pixels.

As I say, mileage will vary depending on your setup and personal taste. For example, the same N64 running on the Toshiba Regza downstairs via composite looks almost as clear as s-video does on the SyncMaster. The latter makes the N64 look like absolute sludge via composite.

Personally, I wouldn't go for an upscaler. Your HD TV has it's own input lag no matter what, and putting a HD upscaler into the chain is only going to increase that. Sure, your TV may not have to upscale anymore, but it's still doing other stuff. Getting another box to do the same job that your TV already does (OK, maybe your TV doesn't emulate scanlines lol..) just seems a bit much. Use that money on some N64 carts instead!
Edited by Martin64, Mar 10 2014, 10:48 AM.
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Kobeskillz
Established Member
Mop_it_up
Mar 9 2014, 02:46 PM
Count me in with the plasma TV camp. Plasma is better than LCD in every way that counts, and it's crazy how much better it is at displaying SD content. They also have almost zero latency, there's still at least one frame since the NES lightgun won't work on it, but it isn't enough that I've ever felt it. Also, SD content scales better to 1080p than 720p, so N64 will look better on a 1080p TV than a 720p.

It's also worth trying to fiddle with the TV's settings to adjust the image, this can help it look better. I find that turning up the sharpness helps, and adjusting the contrast depending on the game can help reduce any "bleeding" that might happen with the colours. Changing the black level to "light" instead of "dark" also helps with some N64 games that use darker colours, making it difficult to see dark areas. The few games that support widescreen also look nice, and I like the extra viewing angle so it's worth it to play these games on my plasma over my CRT.



No matter how good plasmas are over LDC's I just can't get over glare. Glare pisses me off like no other. Even if it's just a tiny bit from a light or a crack in the window. Ugh forget it.
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mkl
Newbie
mjwatts26
Jan 18 2014, 10:55 PM
I think this is basically the same thing as what danikei posted (someone correct me if I'm wrong), except it also supports s-video. I'm considering giving it a try if my plasma does a poor job with the n64's s-video signal.

http://www.monoprice.com/Product/?c_id=101&cp_id=10114&cs_id=1011406&p_id=9994&seq=1&format=2#description
I have this exact one - for quite many games it seems to work pretty well, but for (for example) Super Mario 64, in the first level when you zoom out, the image does get slightly blurry, especially with composite cables (whereas my TV handles it well without one, using composite cables). S-vid cables seem to work slightly better with the upscaling/processing it does.

I'm currently using a 3rd party s-video cable which messes up the image quite a bit, so I'll report back once I get my official s-vid cable. I'll give it a try with the HDMI converter mentioned in the quote.

Any affordable as-lag-free-as-possible suggestions for HDMI/VGA/DVI displays with a clear (non-blurry) image output? (S-vid and/or composite input required)

EDIT: The improvement the official S-video cable did was to remove a chess-like mostly transparent grid. The image still blurs in some cases when zoomed out.
Edited by mkl, Jun 3 2014, 06:25 AM.
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myth
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bluedogrulez
Jan 17 2014, 12:46 PM
Blinkshot
Jan 17 2014, 07:28 AM
I'd actually really enjoy others opinions on this matter as I don't get crisp images now that I upgraded to my new TV.
I have heard and mentioned (but never myself tested) that a DVD player can be used to upscale the imagine of a N64 on an HDTV.

Some older DVD players have AV and/or S-Video inputs and HDMI outputs. They were also designed to "upscale" regular DVDs to display better on HDTVs. This is the type of DVD player I am referring to.

I think I actually have one of these that does not play DVDs anymore, so I should try it out and see if it upscales (and therefore warrants the space it takes up in my home).

On a related note, I just got a cool new wifi blue-ray player and guess what? Ports are strictly HDMI.



The best way to play the n64 on a hd tv that I'm aware of would be on a funtastic green (possibly purple :huh: ) using s-video. The smaller the tv the better the picture for the n64.
Edited by myth, Jun 21 2014, 01:46 PM.
Been reading N64 forever since 2013.
Snes & N64 forever!
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