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Author Topic: Buying my first stand alone arcade CRT monitor to use with Mame/15KHz etc  (Read 1070 times)

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I've been running a dedicated emulation PC with CRT Emudriver outputting at 15KHz for a while now with great results. The picture on my Sony BVM is fantastic, but I would like to go larger. Professional / Display monitors over 20" like the NEC XM or Mitsubishi Megaview series are almost impossible to get hold of in the UK, so I have decided that the only alternative is to go with a large arcade monitor. I've owned a Jamma cab before, but never hooked up a PC or used an arcade monitor stand alone, so I would really appreciate some advice.

1.) How do I go about connecting my PC setup to the monitor?
I am currently outputting 15KHz from my PC via dsub, passing that through an Extron unit to combine the sync, then outputting from that 4xBNC R.G.B.S. that goes into my broadcast monitor. * I also have a 4xBNC to (direction switchable) Scart cable I can add on to that chain to use with consumer TVs.
With an arcade monitor, at what point in that chain would I connect to the Arcade monitor (after the Extron unit I assume) and what kind of interface I can buy to bridge that gap?

2.) I would like some suggestions on what to buy, where to buy it and how much it might cost.
I have seen a really fantastic setup that uses what I think is a 38" model. It has the analogue pots at the front for geometry adjustment (which is really essential for me or on a remote board), and I think this guy must have some kind of Scart (or JP21) interface as it looks as if he has it set up for Jamma boards, Japanese PCs and consoles. Does anyone know what model this is?
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« Last Edit: June 04, 2018, 02:17:45 pm by Crayfish »


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I too would like to get a monitor like that but have never owned one before. I have no idea would I would need to connect one of those to a PC and what kind of connectors they even have.


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Most older arcade monitors would use RGBS, same as you are, but through whatever plug they liked wired up to the Jamma socket - i.e. it didn't matter what plug. Sometimes the plugs are common molex, most of the time you'll have to wire something.

However, most old arcade monitors will want a video amp to use with a PC. The Jpac from Ultimarc works well, and takes a VGA cable straight from your PC. It outputs to a Jamma edge, which plugs into the socket in a lot of older cabs. If you don't have a cab, just the monitor, you can buy a jamma extender, cut the wires where needed and then bridge the RGBS to the arcade chassis through some screw terminals or something.

Personally, I'd pay money for a nice presentation monitor that will also do 31/45kHz, as getting a decent larger Nanao monitor, the Rolls Royce of Arcade monitors, isn't going to be cheap.


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If you live in the UK then you should just buy an old Sony, sharp or Toshiba tv with an RGB scart input. The image will be superior to most pro monitors like the XM29 for 15hkz arcade games.

I recently sold an NEC XM29 because their pitch is too fine for 240p games. It is closer to the blocky overly sharp (and non-authentic) image you get on HD flatscreens. I don't know why anyone likes those things for mame use.

I currently have a tri-sync flat crt arcade monitor, a wells Gardner curved CGA CRT, a top of the line Ikegami 20" broadcast curved monitor and an old Sony trinitron CRT. If I still lived in the UK then I would be using the Sony trinitron. It has the best 15hkz image after the wells Gardner curved cga monitor.

My 24.8" tri-sync arcade crt is the most convenient for emulated arcade games as it has a db15 (vga style) port as well as the (non) standard 5 wire cga rgbs input. It works with a PC without a signal boost and with arcade hardware without a resistor. The pitch is still a little too fine to be optimal for cga games though. It looks great with ega and VGA games like Sega Rally and Daytona etc.

If you are one of those that absolutely has to have a pro monitor, you might find better luck searching for barco and hantarex monitors in the UK. They were the pro monitor of choice when I lived there in the 90's. They were available up to 37".

I am more of an arcade purist in that I like games to look exactly like I remember them in the arcades. Arcade monitors did not have overly defined scan lines and jagged edges on the sprites. The image was bright, blended and smooth.


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... most old arcade monitors will want a video amp to use with a PC. The Jpac from Ultimarc works well, and takes a VGA cable straight from your PC.

You can also get yourself a plain old video amp (ie without the JAMMA board and other bits of a JPAC) to amp your RGB signals. These are available from Ultimarc too, and a lot cheaper than the JPACs. But if you must have a JAMMA video input to your arcade monitor, then JPAC is the easiest way to go
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