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Author Topic: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review  (Read 10776 times)

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tommywright

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Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« on: September 13, 2011, 12:44:49 am »
*Edit: Read bottom for "1-year later" insert.*

It was odd for me to come back to the mame scene and find that all the CRTs were pretty much gone.  I built my dream cab over 6 years ago which held a Wells Garner D9200.  I was hoping there had been major improvements since then, because that monitor cost me more in repairs than it was worth retail.  

Now it's mid 2011 and I find myself EXTREMELY limited in choice.  It seems my only option is basically the Makvision 2929D-72 "High Resolution" which is the 800 x 600 digital multisync version.  This thing doesn't even sync to 15kHz horizontally so there's no way to get the look of the D9200.  :angry:  H frequency is going to be 30-40kHz so we'll need to play with resolution to get scrolling games not to tear.

I placed the order about a week ago and it arrived today.  



The FedEx guy pretty much dropped it from the back of the truck to the ground which was probably gentle compared to the handling it got during it's cross country trip.  So I was shocked to see it in perfect condition when I opened the box.  The packaging is surely what saved it with its conformed foam casing several inches thick.

I pulled it out of the box, set it on my desk and started hooking it up.  It took me awhile to find the power cable because they had placed it in with the bezel.  I'm glad I bought the bezel by the way.  It's very nice and there's no way I could make something like that.



First impressions:
It's certainly big enough.  >:D  I'm not crazy about the flat screen though.  My D9200 had a nice shape that was much more like the old school arcade screens.  Certainly not a deal breaker.  The OSC (screen controls) are built into a separate little panel that is unmounted with plenty of cable.  This is a HUGE plus because you can mount this thing on the cabinet.  Once you mount a WG monitor, it's almost impossible to adjust the screen with the OSC mounted on the monitor itself... so this is a nice feature.

Now let's plug it into the MAME computer...



The first thing I notice is the awful dpi change from mid-screen to the outer edge.  This was something I was prepared for after reading these forums but it's still shocking.  The clarity of the screen falls off drastically toward the outer left corners creating such a blurry image that it's impossible to read text within 2 inches of the screen's edge.  My D9200 did not look like this. :angry:

I placed the convergence image in the background and tiled it.  The colors lined up within a pixel or two so I was happy with that (thank goodness because I don't think there is any convergence adjustments in the OSC).  It's a bit hard to tell however with the left side of the screen being so damn blurry.  If this were to be used as a computer monitor, it would be completely inadequate but arcade games are quite forgiving.

I'm using an ArcadeVGA 3000 video card.  The most amazing thing about this product is how fast it ships from the UK.  I live in Southern California and I bet it didn't take 4 days for that card to arrive from the day I ordered it.  How the hell do that do that?   :dunno

I'm not sure the AVGA card is very useful with this monitor because it doesn't seem to run at all off the AVGA's vga port... so I have it running out the DVI with an adapter.  I was pretty pissed when I saw all the tearing in both vertical and horizontal scrolling games.  I also noticed that it never synced to any new resolution, so MAME was constantly running at 800 x 600 and just stretching the game to fit.  Luckily, reading and following the AVGA instructions resulted in pretty much perfect scrolling.  I've run about 10 different games with virtually no tearing... but it's not perfect looking.  



I'm still performing at a much higher resolution than the game was meant for so the scanlines are almost non-existent on the older games and some games with strange resolutions don't work at all with the AVGA settings.  The terrible dpi issue on the left side of the screen is actually noticeable while playing a game.  It's much less so than trying to read a webpage but it still pisses me off.

Conclusion:
I probably wouldn't be recommending the Makvision D2929-72 if there was some other choice in large screens... but their isn't.  :cry:  A nice >25" LCD 4:3 would probably do the trick... if someone would make one.  :banghead:  Honestly, if not for the terrible looking left corners, I would be pretty happy.  It's certainly better than a tv... but is it $500 better than a tv?

**************************

Ok.. so it's been almost 1 year since I bought my Makvision monitor (it's now July 2012) and I have to say that it's WAY more reliable than the Wells Garner that I previously owned.  After a year with my WG D9200, I had spent well over the cost of the monitor in repairs and it was still unreliable.  The new Makvision has been on for weeks at a time with absolutely no issues.  I do not notice the dpi change to the outside edges at all unless I have to go into Windows (which is super rare).  I run Hyperspin at 800x600 and it looks fantastic.  Games are run at twice the resolution and twice the refresh to prevent tearing and they look fantastic (not as original looking as running them in the native 15kz but very very good).

Overall I'm very happy with the Makvision and would now recommend spending the $500 to others.  These things are made for commercial arcades so it should last many years like this.  I'm not sure a TV could hold up like this being on 24/7 but I haven't tested one yet.  I would never recommend a Wells Garner but the Makvision gets my blessing.  I hope this helps someone out there... good luck!


********************************
« Last Edit: July 23, 2012, 12:00:00 pm by tommywright »

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2011, 09:18:23 am »
I had the exact same response to the change in dpi when I unboxed mine for the first time. I've found that installing it and actually playing games on it for a while, you just don't notice it anymore.

My suggestion for getting the most out of this monitor is to pair it with an ATI card (the avga should work) and use Calamity's modified drivers which allow 100+ video modes, and GroovyMame which does dynamic modeline calculation for framerates.

Since this is a 31kHz monitor you can scale all the 15kHz modes by 2X and get a 31kHz resolution (eg: 256x240 becomes 512x480). Calamity's drivers comes with a utility to calculate modelines from MAME's XML based on what your monitor is capable of, and then GroovyMame can modify those resolutions to update the refreshrate to the native refresh of whatever game you're running, at run time. You end up with pixel perfect images and no tearing.

Check out the Groovymame subforum:
http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?board=52.0

tommywright

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2011, 10:57:37 am »
Thanks for the info!  I'll check that out for sure.  I gotta catch up at work for the day I took off to play with this thing. 

It's still very cool.  I'm looking at it this morning and I think you're right.  I sometimes notice things because I know it's there.  I bet anyone else that plays a game on this would never know it gets blurry toward those corners. 

wxman13

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #3 on: September 15, 2011, 08:50:37 pm »
I am very interested in how you get the best setup for this monitor as well, I am currently working on setting up a UA II with this exact monitor and ArcadeVGA3000 card.

tommywright

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #4 on: September 15, 2011, 09:02:37 pm »
I'm working on it with ctmm68030 and it sounds like he's got it going really well.  I'm going to test his recommendations this weekend and I'll let you know.

If you want to get a jump on it.  Here's the thread he forwarded me...

http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?topic=112869.0


wxman13

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #5 on: September 15, 2011, 09:32:59 pm »
Wow a lot to absorb!! Please let me know what you find out for the best setup. I just have gotten mine hoked up to the ArcadeVGA card, and it definitely doesn't work with the vga connector, as stated earlier I had to use the VGA to DVI adaptor. I am also noticing some discoloration in the screen at times, a purple hue, which I know can be caused by large magnets from speakers, but the speakers I have are very small and a good ways from the screen? Have you seen this?

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #6 on: September 15, 2011, 10:58:32 pm »
How odd! I've been getting sporadic purple magnet spots too. They come and go on their own. Degaussing doesn't help.

wxman13

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #7 on: September 15, 2011, 11:10:02 pm »
How odd! I've been getting sporadic purple magnet spots too. They come and go on their own. Degaussing doesn't help.

Exactly what I'm seeing as well! ???

tommywright

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #8 on: September 18, 2011, 07:28:58 pm »
@wxman13

So I worked on it today.  I simply unzipped groovymame (I used groovymame32_0143.013.exe.7z).  I'm not sure what the (a) and (b) versions are and although I read something about patching.. I couldn't figure that part out.  So I just pointed Hyperspin to groovymame (I had to rename it to "groovymame32.exe" because Hyperspin doesn't seem to like long file names) and it just worked.

So it seems that it syncs to double scan frequencies in order to eliminate tearing.  I've tested many games now (including Galaxian, Gorf and Frogger which didn't sync at all to the default AVGA and mame)... so far it's fantastic.  I don't see any tearing and I get most things at double resolution (or close there) and it does a pretty good job filling the screen.

You don't need the crt_emudriver or VMMaker (doesn't work with AVGA 3000 anyway).  Strangely, you don't even need the mame.ini.  I still haven't figured that one out but it actually works very well with no mame.ini.  I tried both and I think I get a more accurate resolution without the mame.ini... but maybe I'm crazy.

Anyway, try it out and let me know.  I'm really really happy at this point.  I'm getting very close now to what I got on my old WG D9200 minus proper scanlines.  Adding groovymame makes the Makvision well worth the purchase.   :applaud:


wxman13

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #9 on: September 18, 2011, 08:10:54 pm »
@wxman13

So I worked on it today.  I simply unzipped groovymame (I used groovymame32_0143.013.exe.7z).  I'm not sure what the (a) and (b) versions are and although I read something about patching.. I couldn't figure that part out.  So I just pointed Hyperspin to groovymame (I had to rename it to "groovymame32.exe" because Hyperspin doesn't seem to like long file names) and it just worked.

So it seems that it syncs to double scan frequencies in order to eliminate tearing.  I've tested many games now (including Galaxian, Gorf and Frogger which didn't sync at all to the default AVGA and mame)... so far it's fantastic.  I don't see any tearing and I get most things at double resolution (or close there) and it does a pretty good job filling the screen.

You don't need the crt_emudriver or VMMaker (doesn't work with AVGA 3000 anyway).  Strangely, you don't even need the mame.ini.  I still haven't figured that one out but it actually works very well with no mame.ini.  I tried both and I think I get a more accurate resolution without the mame.ini... but maybe I'm crazy.

Anyway, try it out and let me know.  I'm really really happy at this point.  I'm getting very close now to what I got on my old WG D9200 minus proper scanlines.  Adding groovymame makes the Makvision well worth the purchase.   :applaud:



Thanks for the info, I'll test it out soon, just curious if you have seen the purple spots on the screen? They seem to come and go own their own?

tommywright

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #10 on: September 18, 2011, 11:09:39 pm »
No, sorry.. I haven't seen any purple spots.

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #11 on: September 19, 2011, 05:30:41 am »
@wxman13

So I worked on it today.  I simply unzipped groovymame (I used groovymame32_0143.013.exe.7z).  I'm not sure what the (a) and (b) versions are and although I read something about patching.. I couldn't figure that part out.  So I just pointed Hyperspin to groovymame (I had to rename it to "groovymame32.exe" because Hyperspin doesn't seem to like long file names) and it just worked.

So it seems that it syncs to double scan frequencies in order to eliminate tearing.  I've tested many games now (including Galaxian, Gorf and Frogger which didn't sync at all to the default AVGA and mame)... so far it's fantastic.  I don't see any tearing and I get most things at double resolution (or close there) and it does a pretty good job filling the screen.

You don't need the crt_emudriver or VMMaker (doesn't work with AVGA 3000 anyway).  Strangely, you don't even need the mame.ini.  I still haven't figured that one out but it actually works very well with no mame.ini.  I tried both and I think I get a more accurate resolution without the mame.ini... but maybe I'm crazy.

Anyway, try it out and let me know.  I'm really really happy at this point.  I'm getting very close now to what I got on my old WG D9200 minus proper scanlines.  Adding groovymame makes the Makvision well worth the purchase.   :applaud:



Thanks for the info, I'll test it out soon, just curious if you have seen the purple spots on the screen? They seem to come and go own their own?

I've noticed that if it's left running for a while, they eventually go away, but some days I never see them at all.

It's just the monitor telling you to play more vertical games, where you don't notice them as much :P

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #12 on: September 22, 2011, 04:45:29 pm »
@wxman13

So I worked on it today.  I simply unzipped groovymame (I used groovymame32_0143.013.exe.7z).  I'm not sure what the (a) and (b) versions are and although I read something about patching.. I couldn't figure that part out.  So I just pointed Hyperspin to groovymame (I had to rename it to "groovymame32.exe" because Hyperspin doesn't seem to like long file names) and it just worked.

So it seems that it syncs to double scan frequencies in order to eliminate tearing.  I've tested many games now (including Galaxian, Gorf and Frogger which didn't sync at all to the default AVGA and mame)... so far it's fantastic.  I don't see any tearing and I get most things at double resolution (or close there) and it does a pretty good job filling the screen.

You don't need the crt_emudriver or VMMaker (doesn't work with AVGA 3000 anyway).  Strangely, you don't even need the mame.ini.  I still haven't figured that one out but it actually works very well with no mame.ini.  I tried both and I think I get a more accurate resolution without the mame.ini... but maybe I'm crazy.

Anyway, try it out and let me know.  I'm really really happy at this point.  I'm getting very close now to what I got on my old WG D9200 minus proper scanlines.  Adding groovymame makes the Makvision well worth the purchase.   :applaud:



Thanks for the info, I'll test it out soon, just curious if you have seen the purple spots on the screen? They seem to come and go own their own?

I've noticed that if it's left running for a while, they eventually go away, but some days I never see them at all.

It's just the monitor telling you to play more vertical games, where you don't notice them as much :P
They are getting worse on mine, I've spoken with a tech at Suzo Happ, he thinks it may be a bad tube, even though its under warranty it still would be cheaper possibly to try to fix rather than paying for the freight to send it back for repair  :-\

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #13 on: September 22, 2011, 04:57:02 pm »
In what way can you repair a bad tube?

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #14 on: September 22, 2011, 08:03:28 pm »
No way other than replacing the tube itself that I know of, I am hoping its something other than the tube, that would cost less than the freight charge. :-\

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #15 on: September 22, 2011, 08:08:56 pm »
Well, mine seems to have stopped doing it recently, where it was really bad for quite a while.  :dunno

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #16 on: September 22, 2011, 08:56:07 pm »
What areas was yours showing the purple spots? Mine are more noticeable in windows when there is a white background.

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #17 on: July 22, 2012, 07:16:49 pm »
I have a completely different monitor, but I get purple spots if I move the monitor while it's turned on.  It's a gaussing problem and I think most monitors will do that.   If you turn the monitor off for a while then back on, it should degauss itself and the spots will go away.
Hantarex Polo 15KHz
Sapphire Radeon HD 7750 2GB (GCN)
GroovyMAME 0.197.017h_d3d9ex
CRT Emudriver & CRT Tools 2.0 beta 13 (Crimson 16.2.1 for GCN cards)
Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
Intel Core i7-4790K @ 4.8GHz
ASUS Z87M-PLUS Motherboard

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #18 on: July 23, 2012, 12:03:52 pm »
I made an update to this review after owning the monitor for right at 1 year. 

I have never seen any blue or purple spots or any other color issue with mine, so I can't comment on that.


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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #19 on: August 30, 2012, 10:34:04 am »
I was just looking at this monitor as a viable choice.  Thanks for putting your review together.  Could you summarize your exact setup if that's not too much hassle?  I got that you are using GroovyMame.....did you really need the arcadeVGA you found or would any ATI card work like the newer ones? 

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #20 on: August 30, 2012, 01:03:47 pm »
Hmm.. about my computer... I know it's an Asus board with a P4 on it (not sure which one).  I think that machine has 4 gigs of ram (which is way overkill but it is my old render machine and I can't use the ram in any of my new computers so I just left it).  You do NOT need an arcadeVGA card for this monitor because the monitor doesn't sync down to 15khz but I bought one anyway because I was confused about what was required.  There is no benefit to the AVGA card in my rig.  The other Ultimarc product that I am using is that switchable 4-way to 8-way stick which I LOVE and highly recommend.

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Re: Makvision 29/27 (2929D-72) Review
« Reply #21 on: August 30, 2012, 02:41:07 pm »
 
Hmm.. about my computer... I know it's an Asus board with a P4 on it (not sure which one).  I think that machine has 4 gigs of ram (which is way overkill but it is my old render machine and I can't use the ram in any of my new computers so I just left it).  You do NOT need an arcadeVGA card for this monitor because the monitor doesn't sync down to 15khz but I bought one anyway because I was confused about what was required.  There is no benefit to the AVGA card in my rig.  The other Ultimarc product that I am using is that switchable 4-way to 8-way stick which I LOVE and highly recommend.

 :cheers: Thanks!  Sounds like I can avoid the AVGA.