February 14, 2021 at 12:55 AM #45256
I just got the Kaico OSSC and want to use it to connect my PS2 to a modern HD monitor. For my PC I use a BenQ EX2780Q 144Hz IPS 27″ monitor but the overall picture quality is not satisfying with the OSSC. The PS2 mainly outputs a 480i signal and in some games even 480p.The game GTA San Andreas is pixelated and the aspect ratio is incorrect. I am thinking that my BenQ is not upscaling the signal in a good way. Now I am searching for a good monitor for my PS2 and the OSSC.
I have read that the ViewSonic VX3211-mh is a good match with the OSSC but for me a bit to pricy. Are there good alternatives for the OSSC?
Is the ViewSonic VX2458-MHD compareble with the VX3211-mh except the screen size? What monitor will be a perfect match for my Kaico OSSCC and PS2?
Thanks!February 15, 2021 at 12:24 AM #45287
Anyone who can help me with this?
What about the Retrotink 2x Pro multiformat? Would that be a better choice for my PS2?February 15, 2021 at 5:53 AM #45292
I also use the Kaico OSSC with a PC monitor, and, by sheer coincidence, started a replay of San Andreas tonight. So I feel compelled to jump in.
The OSSC can work really well with a PS2 – with the appropriate setup. I admit to having spent just about as much time tinkering with the settings over the year that I’ve had it as I’ve had playing with it, but I’m really satisfied with how things are looking now.
The first thing you’ll want to do is set the sampling rate correctly. You should start with the settings here, although you’ll probably need to adjust to get it right. For reference, that’s: H.samplerate=858, H.active=640, H.synclen=44, H.backporch=116. You get to this from the “Sampling Options,” then “Adv. Timing 480i.” I also highly recommend setting “Allow upsample 2x” to “On” while you’re in there, it helps a lot.
You should also make sure the scanlines are set up right. The OSSC isn’t really designed around interlaced output, and uses a “bob” deinterlace method that makes the picture “flicker” – although the effect is more like rapid vibration. You can cover up a lot of this with scanlines. From “Scanline Options,” make sure “Scanlines” is set to “Auto” or “on” and that “Sl. alternating” is set to “on.” This will essentially add scanlines to alternating frames and mask some of the deinterlacing flicker. Adjust the scanline strength to whatever looks best for you, and I’d suggest you increase the “Sl. hybrid st.” setting as you increase the scanline strength to offset the way they’ll darken the picture. Over the past few days, I’ve been using the combination horizontal and vertical scanlines, but I suspect I’ll adjust that on a game-by-game basis.
Finally, you’ll want to make sure you understand the different output settings, under… “Output Settings.” “Passthrough” does no line multiplication and lets your monitor handle the de-interlacing. This is generally considered the best approach for 480i sources like the PS2, but I find the result blown out, and have the additional effect of my monitor squishing it into the center of the screen, unless I have the “TX Mode” set to “DVI.” (Keep meaning to ask about that…) “Line 2x (bob)” will let the OSSC handle the de-interlacing and gives you a bigger, softer picture. “Line 3x (laced)” is back to letting your monitor handle the de-interlacing, and has the same “squished” effect for me. Finally, there’s “Line4x (bob)” with is where I keep mine most of the time, since it looks best with my monitor.
I’m sure you’ll need to do some adjustment, though. I’ve spent a lot of time with a ruler pressed up against the screen to get the aspect ratio right, which ended up being “H.Sample=788,” oddly enough. But it’s ended up being worth it, I’ve basically eschewed all my newer systems in favor of playing the PS2 through the OSSC.
Here’s how things are looking currently (sorry for the phone pic, there’s a lot more detail in the real thing):
February 16, 2021 at 12:41 AM #45317
Thanks for the detailed explanation!
I am not sure if my monitor handles the OSSC very well. A lot of settings I totally don’t understand what they are doing. It’s very confusing.
Still thinking of getting a 24″ full hd monitor (1920 x 1080) but it’s a risk because I don’t know if it will match my OSSC. A smaller screensize will get a sharper image, right?
Still wondering if the new Retrotink 2x Pro Mulitformat will be a better match for my monitor.It’s a plug and play device and that makes it very confinient to use. The OSSC is complex and not for a casual PS2 gamer like me. I want a simple solution.
What kind of monitor are you using ?February 16, 2021 at 4:31 AM #45320
I’m using a UHD 28″ Samsung LU28E590DS/ZA (phew!), so it’s a little bigger than what you have now. It goes up to 3840 X 2160, which is more than my current PC can even handle, so I’m future-proofing a bit. (Plus I like to borrow the PS4 Pro from the living room once in a while.)
The RetroTINK may be a better approach for you, and it may not – both the OSSC and RetroTINK were designed with TVs in mind, and, by using PC monitors instead, we’ve kind of opted out of simple solutions. For my part, I’m glad I went with the OSSC and took the time to learn it, since I can adjust to whatever weirdness the monitor’s processing adds. (Well, most of it, anyway…) That, and I’ve also got my old Genesis running again with a SCART cable, and that’s the exact kind of system the OSSC excels at.
Before you drop any more money, I’d say to go into the RetroTINK forums on here or elsewhere, and see what other people are hooking theirs up to. (Looks like you’ve already made a thread, but nobody’s responded yet.) In any case, “smaller screen=sharper picture” doesn’t really apply here, because both devices are essentially outputting new hi-res versions of the source signal, rather than simply blowing it up to a bigger picture. Sharpness is going to depend mostly on making sure that everything is set up right and doing its job.
Let us know what you end up going with!
PS – I’ve spent most of the day playing San Andreas and maxing out CJ’s muscle mass… so his scrawny arms in my sample pic already look weird, less than a day later!February 16, 2021 at 11:28 PM #45330
What would be better? Get a compatible HD PC monitor or get a Full HD TV for the OSSC? Thinking of buying a cheaper 24″ monitor or 24″ TV. 24″ is big enough for me.
A refresh rate of 60Hz should be more then enough for the PS2, right? Only thing to find out is how the monitor or TV upscales a 480i or 480p signal. The PS2 also outputs a 576i signal or am I mistaking?
I did a search on the internet and the Viewsonic VX3211-mh seems a good monitor that works well with the OSSC. 32″ is too big for my taste, but maybe the smaller sizes in the Viewsonic VX series will have the same specs?
Anyway, my BenQ monitor does not work well with the OSSC. The difference between 480i line 2x or line 4x is not very noticeable. Even pass thru doesn’t look a lot worse, but there is a difference.
I could buy a Viewsonic 24″ monitor but that will be a risk. How to find out that a TV or monitor upscales the OSSC signals well?February 17, 2021 at 3:35 AM #45338
You should pick monitor or TV based on your general use requirements – what’s this going to be used for most of the time? I used small flatscreen TVs as computer monitors for years because I wanted the PS2 to always be available through component inputs and… man, I wish I’d switched to an actual computer monitor earlier, at the very least to have saved myself the headaches of weird, semi-unrecognized resolutions. And on top of that, there’s clarity difference in something designed to be viewed from a distance of inches and something designed to be viewed by a distance of feet.
I guess what I’m saying is, if you’re only going to use something for console gaming and watching stuff, go with a TV. But if you want something that’s going to be a computer monitor most of the time, go with that. You can adjust as needed.
As for the outputs, the upscaling is happening in the OSSC, so it’s more a matter of getting your screen to treat it right. When I pull up the “Info” screen on my monitor for the different OSSC outputs, I get
Does your monitor (or any of the others you’re looking at) have different modes for PC and AV? Mine does, probably more for office presentations than video games, and when it’s on AV, I get the option to set the aspect ratio to 4:3, 16:9, or a screen fit. (For 2xBob, anyway, and passthrough if the OSSC’s TX Mode is set to DVI instead of HDMI – but that’s my own weirdness.) I just hooked the OSSC up to the TV I used to use as a monitor and it took every output mode like a champ. It’s a decade-old Best Buy house brand model, so make of that what you will.
Take a look at the TV compatibility thread and see if they’ve checked out anything you’re looking at, and the master list has a few monitors on it.
But yeah, start from your circumstances and go from there. Even when I was using TVs, the screens on my desk spent 85% on the PC and 15% gaming – but that 15% is important to me. (The Year of COVID has made the ratio closer to 60/40, though.)
Oh, and for our purposes, treat 480i and 576i the same – the first is the NTSC standard and the second PAL.February 17, 2021 at 3:35 AM #45339
EDIT – Whoops, double postFebruary 17, 2021 at 12:38 PM #45354
Thanks for your answer. Really appreciate it!
I am going to use the monitor/TV mainly for my PS2. My BenQ monitor for my PC.
Going to check that thread you mentioned. You can buy cheap full HD 24″ monitors these days! My BenQ monitor also can display the current resolution and that’s what I am going to check today. Also the aspect ratio can be adjusted. 1:1, full or aspect ratio.
When I change the game settings in GTA to wide-screen, my monitor does not react. The aspect ratio stays the same most of the time. When you compare the pass thru picture with the line 4x picture, is there a big difference between the two?
I still believe that a smaller sized monitor will display a sharper image. All the pixels are more compressed in a smaller screen. Also the viewing distance should be considered. I sit in front of my desk and the viewing distance is about 50cm with my BenQ 27″ monitor I think. The image will be more pixelated.February 18, 2021 at 12:11 AM #45365
Thinking of getting this Viewsonic monitor:
According to the specs it should support a lot of resolutions!
Check out the specs on this monitor.
My BenQ monitor doesn’t support the 480i Line 3x mode. My screen turns black and after a couple of seconds it turns on and then black again. 480i pass thru, line 2x and line 4x does work, but no difference in picture quality. Line 3x is the only one that can be set to 16:9 aspect ratio.
The Viewsonic looks promising.February 18, 2021 at 4:36 AM #45368
To be honest, if you want something to dedicate to the PS2, your best bet would be find a 2000s-era flat CRT – they’re exactly what the system was designed for and will have the least visible pixellation, best shading, etc. Might have to keep an eye out for one appropriate to your space, of course, a lot of these were serious behemoths! But if you can arrange the room around what you find, you’ll be able to get the ideal PS2 experience for free or close to it. They came in various sizes, so a smaller one might turn up your local Facebook Marketplace/freecycle/regional equivalent if you’re patient.
All right, with that out of the way, if you can’t dedicate the space to a CRT (I can’t, myself, due to already having a hobby with monstrously heavy ancient oversized boxes: guitar and bass amps), that’s probably as good a TV choice as any for an OSSC/RetroTINK platform. See what reviews are telling you, and (if you can see it in person before buying, or can find a YouTube demo) get a look at what the options/setup screens look like – you’ll probably be spending a lot of time with it.
3xLaced is a weird mode, I’m sure there’s not much that supports it. (I was wrong in my earlier post, it did look weird on my old TV.) It’s probably the exact thing some folks need in some circumstances, but you can ignore it most of the time. Not sure how your current monitor is handling the image processing if 2x and 4x look the same (since they should be outputting two different resolutions), maybe it’s doing some kind of auto-zoom? Did you set the sampling rates to the ones I gave in my first post? It might treat the signals differently after you do, I know mine did.
With some very specific exceptions (Gran Tourismo 4 and… something else, I forget what), don’t believe any PS2 game’s claim to widescreen. Even when the setting does anything, all you get is the top and bottom of the picture chopped off and the middle blown up – and even then, the menus are probably still stuck in 4:3! You’ll get your best picture, with the framing the games were designed around, in 4:3. Learn to embrace the black bars on the left and right of your screen, they’re your travel companions in this retro journey!
(As a caveat, I should point out that there are some true widescreen mods for PS2 games out there, but you’ll need to deal with the whole softmod/homebrew thing, and if you thought the OSSC was complex…)February 19, 2021 at 12:37 AM #45376
I have a question: does the OSSC outputs a progressive signal all the time?
Not sure, but there where PAL and NTSC CRT’s in the paste. Is this still the same with modern LCD monitors?
Thinking of getting a Viewsonic monitor. When you check the specs of these monitor it seems they support a lot of resolutions.
A CRT is not an option for me. They are getting old and they are big and heavy. Keep in mind that capacitors in old CRT have to be replaced. I still own two Commodore C64 monitors. A 1701 and 1702. For these monitors I have recap sets and planning on replacing the caps soon. They are very nice for my old C64 computer!February 19, 2021 at 1:55 AM #45379
Oh nice, I was a huge Commodore geek in high school in the 90s – had a whole pile of CMD add-ons and even got the damn thing on the internet through local library’s dial-up service, which gave me a chance to experience the tail-end of the NTSC demoscene (such as it was) firsthand. Took the whole mess apart when I started college, and never found the space to put it back together… still sad about that. But I kept my 1702 out and used it as my main TV/gaming monitor until 2010 or so, so it’s what my PS2s saw the most.
Anyway, the NTSC and PAL standards were based entirely around broadcast television, so they don’t apply to anything that came along after. Newer screens should treat them as 480i or 576i and adjust accordingly, provided they can handle the resolutions and the deinterlacing. All of the OSSC’s output modes (just like all modern equipment) are progressive, with the exception of pass-through (if the source is interlaced) and 3xlaced. The interlacing was a method for old broadcast TVs to get the most resolution within the limitations of terrestrial broadcast bandwidth. Most systems prior to the sixth console generation (PS2, Dreamcast, XBox, Gamecube) were 240p – they were able to use a progressive signal because they were only using half the available resolution. The PS2 era was the first to fully use SD resolution (ironically, the last to use it at all) and that meant putting out an interlaced signal. For most of the generational lifespan, anyway – towards the end, which it was obvious that digital was coming to stay, TVs started to come along that could handle progressive scan, and there are surprising number of PS2 games that can be switched to progressive output, often through holding down Triangle and X during startup. (The list everyone shares is here, but I don’t believe that’s all there was.) The OSSC will switch from 480i to 480p when it detects the change in signal if you have “Autodetect Input” set to “current” or “all,” and you can speed up the process by telling it to search as soon as you’ve made the game switch by pressing “1” on your remote. This is helpful because a lot of these games give you a set amount of time to approve the switch to progressive mode before switching back automatically, just in case your display can’t handle it.
You’ll want to be in progressive mode as often as you can, because the two options for de-interlacing that you have are to let the TV handle it through passthrough mode (which can add lag) or on the OSSC through the 2x and 4xbob modes. The bob de-interlacing is what creates the flicker/vibrating image effect, and how much that’s visible can depend on your equipment and how you have everything set up. The “Sl. alternating” scanline mode I mentioned earlier exists to compensate for this effect. The other thing is that the bob deinterlacing can cause burn-in on some displays, so be careful with games that show lots of static text (like, y’know…. most RPGs. I always turn my monitor off if I’m stepping away to use the bathroom or whatever, just to be on the safe side.February 21, 2021 at 12:30 AM #45404
Check out http://www.1200.net
I already have a new case for my Amiga 1200 and waiting for a new case for my Amiga 500. Also two keycap sets!
Anyway, I am still searching for the perfect monitor for my OSSC and PS2. Have contacted Adam from Kaico and he told me that it would be best to find a monitor that also supports 240p. Can’t find any!
I realize that widescreen settings in PS2 game aren’t true 16:9. Correct?
That burn in issue you mentioned, is this only the case with IPS displays? What about TN displays?
Really do hope that I can find a monitor that supports the OSSC output signals! The Viewsonic monitor seems to support a lot of resolutions when you check the specs. Only brand that lists all the supported resolutions. Can’t find any other brand that does this except for BenQ but all BenQ monitors don’t support a 720 x 480 resolution. That could be the issue with my current BenQ monitor.
Adam from Kaico wrote me that he is looking into these Viewsonic monitors and trying to find out if interlaced content is viewable on these monitors.February 21, 2021 at 6:51 AM #45408
Good luck on the Amiga restorations! 8-bit boy that I am, they still seem like something from the future…
I don’t know why you’d need a monitor that could handle 240p for a PS2, unless you wanted to play PS1 games (or the tiny number of 240p PS2 games) in passthrough mode. The deinterlacing thing is probably the bigger deal, since you’re more likely to want passthrough for 480i. I really don’t know what the current trend is, you’d think nothing modern would be able to handle it, but everything is so advanced now, maybe the manufacturers figure “doesn’t take up any space, so why not include it?” I wouldn’t expect my monitor to be have a deinterlacer, since it’s a fancy modern 4K, but it does.
You’ll want to look around on here for more info about the burn-in issue with bob deinterlacing, I’m sure people have gone into more detail. It might be less of an issue for modern displays, especially ones where you can speed up the response time (essentially how fast the pixels change from one color to another).
As for widescreen on the PS2, well… there’s a thorny situation. The short answer is “it changes from game to game, but don’t get your hopes up.” You have to remember that widescreen TVs were still a rarity during the PS2’s lifespan. There’s the setting you can change from in PS2’s config screen, but barely any games check it at all. Mostly wishful thinking on Sony’s part, and probably market prep for when widescreen TVs became more readily available (since they sell those, too).
So now, let’s look at it from the game developer’s perspective. They only have a limited amount of time and money to dedicate to a project, and the vast majority of customers will be playing on a 4:3 TV – so there’s no reason to add on the additional work to add 16:9 functionality. It’s not just the game itself: menus, maps, title screens, and cutscenes would all have to be redone or modified. The few people who have 16:9 TVs at this point are pretty used to doing most of their viewing in 4:3, anyway, aside from movies on DVD.
There were workarounds and cheats, of course, and I’ll link this list again, since it has a column for that as well. I’m sure things got better at the very tail end of the PS2’s era, when more people had widescreen TVs and companies were putting out PS3 versions of the same games. But a lot of it is really, well… just crap.
Let’s look at some examples (apologies again for the phone pics):
Here’s GTA: San Andreas in it’s normal 4:3 mode. I had to use actual game footage, because (as you saw) the menus and maps don’t change at all when you switch the display mode to “Wide.”
And here’s “Wide.” The top and bottom of the image are cut off now, but everything in there seems right. CJ and the disk icon are about the same width as before. But that corner map… ouch. Just like with the map and menu, Rockstar didn’t bother building a widescreen version of this, so we get that… egg thing.
Here’s the iconic opening area of Yakuza 2 in 4:3. It’s a very well laid-out, cinematic shot, with contrasting light and dark areas in the top and bottom.
And here’s the widescreen version. With the top and bottom gone, the layout is much less interesting. At least they bothered to redraw the corner map, though! And, like GTA, the menu and title screen don’t change at all when you switch to widescreen.
Of course, not every game approached a widescreen display this way, so check that list out! And there’s a whole modern mod scene where people are actually increasing the viewable area instead of just zooming in on the center, but that stuff is all… complicated as hell.
Probably a lot longer answer than you were looking for! But there was a lot going on around this time, and nobody quite knew when people would start switching over to wide TVs.
- You must be logged in to reply to this topic.