Discuss Your Gaming Environments and AV Setups
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Erik_Twice
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My new gaming setup and my very small game collection

by Erik_Twice Mon Apr 18, 2016 4:43 pm

My gaming setup has changed quite a bit since the last time I posted about it. I no longer use a triple-head setup, my computer is now new and I added a professional monitor to the mix. In other words, it now looks like this:

Frikazo.jpg
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WHY I ABANDONED MY TRIPLE-HEAD SETUP

After the initial novelty wore off and my gaming habits normalized I realized I wasn't really putting my triple-head setup into use. Sure, when you got the right game working it was quite a pleasure but it didn't do anything for most of the games I usually play. It doesn't help with economic simulators, nor strategy titles nor indie games and it's completely useless for retrogaming. Worse of all, afer a while...I didn't find it that fun for shooters, either.

I'm sure there are many people that would love to have this kind of setup but I don't miss it. It might be the shock of upgrading from a 4:3 but my current PC screen (24", 16:9) feels huge without being as overwhelming.

MY NEW COMPUTER

My new computer is not powerful. It uses an i3 and a GTX950, neither of which can be considered top of the line and the whole cost of the computer was close to 600€. But it's far more than enough than what I use it for and it has a lot of stuff I really like.

For starters, it makes very little noise. My old computer was noisiy. Really noisy and when it was running a game and got much louder, with an ugly chainsaw-like noise. The case was awful: It let dust in from ten different places and despite its size it was a pain to install things on.

The SDD was another nice surprise. At first I scoffed at it, why would I care about my computer booting faster? Those 40€ could go to another game or something actually important yet after trying it I can't imagine ever going back. You simply gain a lot in quality of life by being able to boot Steam and Microsoft Word instantly.

A PROFESSIONAL MONITOR

I've wanted a screen to connect my consoles for a very long time, years, even. At first I wanted a monitor with TV-inputs, but none were common and invariably had too much lag for music games. After a while, I decided I needed a dedicated screen so I started to look for one.

I came across information about PVMs and other professional monitors and I was blown away! I had seen Sonic running on them when I was a kid, at my father's job and I remember the strong colours and nice picture. Given I was going for a CRT anyways, why not spend a bit more and get one of these screens? I started to look for one and quickly found a deal: My 17" JVC TM 1750PN.

The reason I got this one is simple: PVMs are rare and extremely expensive. They don't seem to have been common in Spain and even though no geek I know around here has gotten into them I could already see the signs of "video game premium" setting in. There had to be better alternatives so I looked for other brands and found this one at a very good price: 75€.

Still, I didn't expect to be much of a difference from a normal CRT so I was blown away by the picture when I saw it. The picture is sharp, bright and incredibly colorful and there's no "fuzzyness" or interferences at all despite using A/V because I have no other cables. I'm really looking foward to trying RGB because I'm going to love it, I think.

It does have a a slight geometry issue: The picture is slighty tilted to the right, which is pretty noticiable on the NES and some MAME games (You can tell in the Mega Man 9 picture above). I'll have to ask around and see how I can fix it.

WHAT NOW?

First of all, my old 5.1 speakers died years ago and their 2,5€ replacement is beyond terrible. I'm not much of an audiophile but it's hard not to notice that 50% of the sound is noise and if I use headphones it's even worse. They don't even work a third of the time, right now only one is working, actually :lol:

I want to get a new set for both my PC and the monitor but I don't know which ones or how I'll connect everything. I thought about using my father's amplifier because the shop that sold me the monitor is also selling their old stock of speakers for very cheap (8€) but it's yet another box I have to put in my room. I'm undecided for now, but I think a simple RCA->Minijack->Minijack Splitter is the way to go.

And second, like I said, I only own A/V cables for my consoles. I have to buy a SCART Switch, a SCART to BNC cable (30€!)) and then one cable per console. Indiviaully, it's not much but at 8-10€ per cable on top of the 30€ one it adds up quite fast.

MY COLLECTION

I must be the only member whose collection has shrunk and probably the member with the least game overall: I only own 58 games!

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Of course, the "trick" here is that I play a lot of arcade games which only exist digitally or that I don't own yet but even taking that into account, I have very few games.

The many reason is that...I don't need that many. I mean, I used to have a lot of games I was never really going to play: 4 Mega Man sequels, 6 80 hours RPGs, 10 ultra-hard platformers. You know the drill. Now I only get a game when I'm 100% sure I'll play it and beat it and generally care a lot about it.

Still, another reason is simply piracy. I used to pirate a lot when I was young and I don't have a job so I haven't been able to replace my pirated games with honest copies. I'm starting too, though, as the SFC games can attest.

Well, that's all. I just fancied writing this, dunno. Thoughts? :lol:
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bmoc
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Re: My new gaming setup and my very small game collection

by bmoc Mon Apr 18, 2016 6:35 pm

My SCART switch is easily the priciest thing in my collection outside of consoles purchased when they were new. But part of that is having to import one from Europe. Hopefully you will have an easier time of it.

Looking good though! The RGB cables really do add up. On average I think I was paying $10-20 per cable with the cost of shipping. Totally worth it in my opinion.
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noiseredux
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Re: My new gaming setup and my very small game collection

by noiseredux Tue Apr 19, 2016 9:39 am

Erik, I like your setup. I like simple layouts. Not a fan of clutter.
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Erik_Twice
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Re: My new gaming setup and my very small game collection

by Erik_Twice Tue Apr 19, 2016 4:00 pm

bmoc wrote:My SCART switch is easily the priciest thing in my collection outside of consoles purchased when they were new. But part of that is having to import one from Europe. Hopefully you will have an easier time of it.

Yeah, it must be expensive for you guys. It's still a pain

Looking good though! The RGB cables really do add up. On average I think I was paying $10-20 per cable with the cost of shipping. Totally worth it in my opinion.

I think what I'm going to do is to buy the minimun to set up my Wii and then slowly get the rest when I get a game for that system. So, for example, I won't buy the PS2 cable until I have Gradius III&IV to play on it.

In the meanwhile, I ordered Wii Component cables. Which I thought would be able to give me RGB but apparently being electrically compatible is not enough :(


noiseredux wrote:Erik, I like your setup. I like simple layouts. Not a fan of clutter.

Thanks! Having a clean look is very important to me, so I'm glad you found it pleasing.

I'm actually a bit bothered by all the power bricks I'm forced to keep around, though, I wish there was a way to power all consoles with just one but they all seem to require different voltages :lol:
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bmoc
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Re: My new gaming setup and my very small game collection

by bmoc Tue Apr 19, 2016 4:45 pm

If you have a PAL Wii then you should be able to get a RGB SCART cable for it. However, if your JVC monitor accepts component you probably won't be able to tell much difference between the two. I guess it depends on how many RGB/Component inputs you have on the monitor. If you only have one shared RGB/Component input, then I'd go with a RGB SCART cable so that you can add it to a switchbox later.
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Erik_Twice
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Re: My new gaming setup and my very small game collection

by Erik_Twice Tue Apr 19, 2016 6:12 pm

bmoc wrote:However, if your JVC monitor accepts component you probably won't be able to tell much difference between the two.

It's mostly for emulation, I don't think I would be able to tell RGB vs Component on the Wii.

I guess it depends on how many RGB/Component inputs you have on the monitor. If you only have one shared RGB/Component input, then I'd go with a RGB SCART cable so that you can add it to a switchbox later.

I have a combined RGB/Component input. I just thought that since RGB and Component are electrically compatible I would be able to get it from my Wii without having to wait for the whole SCART Setup.

Oh well, right now I'm planning to get the following:

SCAR => BNC Cable (Around 30€)
SCART Splitter (Around 15€)
Wii SCART cable (Around 10€)

That's a bit more than I have on hand so it will have to wait. Specially since chances are I'll have to pay more for shipping than I think. :lol:
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Re: My new gaming setup and my very small game collection

by chupon Wed Apr 20, 2016 7:11 am

Really like what you've done and appreciate your slim collection. I've been on the fence about slimming myself and have noticed a few other members beginning to sell of major portions of their collections. Whatever makes you happy though!

Bravo with what you've done! Keep on playing Civ 5!
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Erik_Twice
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Re: My new gaming setup and my very small game collection

by Erik_Twice Wed Apr 20, 2016 8:43 am

chupon wrote:Really like what you've done and appreciate your slim collection. I've been on the fence about slimming myself and have noticed a few other members beginning to sell of major portions of their collections. Whatever makes you happy though!

For me it was a very good move. I recovered money that was tied on items I didn't care about, I started playing more and I had more fun.

Bravo with what you've done! Keep on playing Civ 5!

I wish, but I'm totally burned out on it! I have beaten it on Deity in every single manner...and I play on One Cit Challenge. Now my strategy waifu is Nobunaga's Ambition hahaha. :lol:
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