Software Support > GroovyMAME

VGA vs digtial in 2024

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BuckoA51:
Hi all, first post in a while so sorry if this has been asked but I did search through the forums first so hopefully not.

I'm fortunate enough to have a games room with a GroovyMAME PC, a Mister and also lots of original hardware, scalers, along with a multisync CRT and an OLED. I like to play games on all different displays and compare the results, since I run a store selling these solutions it's always a useful exercise for me. Suffice it to say, I've added various matrix switches so I can get analogue to digital and digital to analogue, so I can play pretty much any system on any display in my setup.

Now, over in Mister-land, the trend seems to be for moving away from VGA output on the Mister towards digital output via a DAC and direct video. The main drawbacks of this approach as far as I can see are...

1) Making sure your HDMI switches etc support 240p and nonstandard signals.. For me, I have tested this extensively and I know they do.
2) Getting a VGA DAC that doesn't suck, crush blacks, blur etc... I've tested mine extensively and I am happy with it.

So, given that I'm sure I shouldn't have problems with the other equipment in my setup, would it be a better idea for me to ditch VGA output from my GroovyMAME/CRT Emudriver PC and just plug in DVI instead? Will that just work or is there something I'm overlooking?

Finally, does GroovyMAME/CRT Emudriver support video meta data through direct digital video like MIster does, or is this planned to be added?

Appreciate any insight folks can give me!

BuckoA51:
 :dunno

Bump?

Zebidee:
Apologies, I read this about 20 times but still not sure exactly what it is you are asking. So focusing on the questions.


--- Quote ---So, given that I'm sure I shouldn't have problems with the other equipment in my setup, would it be a better idea for me to ditch VGA output from my GroovyMAME/CRT Emudriver PC and just plug in DVI instead? Will that just work or is there something I'm overlooking?
--- End quote ---

That seem counter-intuitive, but I don't understand your setup and reasons fully. Why rely on switches and external DAC/ADCs? Every conversion involving analog signals will involve "lossyness", there will be some degradation of signal. So you are better off getting your analog from as close to source as possible, rather than running it through multiple transcoders. Like, taking video from your VGA header directly to your analogue display (CRT presumably), rather than through a "matrix". Or taking digital video output and scaling it for 240p.

So yeah, I guess it might make sense in a shop display, but not so much in practice in a hobbyist's playcave. I know people use switches with multiple consoles to one display, but there are limitations to extending this to multiple displays. I don't see the benefit in going all digital when some of your displays are analog, if that is your intention.

To complicate the question, DVI-I outputs analog VGA RGBHV signals.


--- Quote ---Finally, does GroovyMAME/CRT Emudriver support video meta data through direct digital video like MIster does, or is this planned to be added?
--- End quote ---


I have no idea, the only man that might be able to tell you is Calamity - but I know he has been collaborating with Mister developers on some projects.


--- Quote ---Now, over in Mister-land, the trend seems to be for moving away from VGA output on the Mister towards digital output via a DAC and direct video.
--- End quote ---

If this is so, then why has a new 24-bit analog I/O board for Mister just been released? Disco ain't dead, and neither is analog  :afro:

BuckoA51:

--- Quote ---Why rely on switches and external DAC/ADCs?
--- End quote ---

Well of course the PC graphics card is capable of both digital and analogue, digital is going to be theoretically better due to the fact of

1) Smaller, thinner cables easier to route
2) Digital to digital (and only going analogue at the very last minute) means you have the absolute best quality transmission with no chance of analogue loss or interference
3) Hopefully eliminate forever VGA ghosting effect, that even expensive VGA cables seem to do a little bit these days, especially on longer runs
4) Outputting digital means the signal can route to my Morph4K scaler as well as the CRT

Although in this case with it being an older GPU it's only going to carry DVI so I'd need an audio integrator too, which is regrettable and undoes at least a little of point 1) but still.

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