Topic: CRT vs. LCD

Quite an interesting discussion (well, at times) on the subject at BYOA's forum which touches still new aspects such as G-Sync technology:

http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.p … 196.0.html

Leaving apart the motion blur thing and how it actually behaves in motion, I myself can't find those Timothy Lottes shader samples linked by forum user Bulbousbeard good enough, and that's disregarding the fact that the NEC LCD I'm using isn't the best to judge color fidelity. But the truth is that not everybody is as picky. You don't need to nitpick much to get highly displeased by the screen format issues, though. Losing the full-screen effect is too much to swallow, if you ask me. In the end, Calamity pretty much nailed it in his first post there:

This is the rational part, the facts. Eventually all these issues will be solved, but we'll still prefer CRTs, this would be the emotional part. CRTs feel like real things, LCDs feel like fake screens. A CRT is a high voltage device with an electron gun ruled by electromagnets and a thick glass screen. On the other hand LCDs feel like plastic, just a moving slide with a kitchen fluorescent tube behind.

Anyway, first off it needs to be proven that LCDs' response time can be as low as we'd demand. It'll take some time for sure.


Re: CRT vs. LCD

When you look at those samples, the first reaction is "wow": the shadow mask effect is very good, it does look like a *photograph* taken from a real CRT. However, you soon start realizing that the color gradients are not what they should be, everything looks like being painted with flat color patches. It is more obvious where highlights are supposed to exist.

You can't simply achieve the required contrast with this type of screen. Even if the LCD is overall much brighter than a CRT, using any sort of filter only makes the picture darker. To compensate for the darkness introduced by the fake mask, you need to overdrive the video signal, ruining the hues. By comparison, a CRT is mostly a black surface, with little holes from where the light comes out. But the brightness of these holes is much, much higher than what you can simulate with an LCD. I'd say this is where much of the problem lies. For some reason the result is much richer to the eye on a CRT.

I've been always amazed on the realistical look of textures like metals, explosions, skin, etc. obtained from a very crude palette when seen on a proper CRT, and the very particular aesthetics that results from this. I'm afraid this is the spark of life that is lost when you see the same games on an LCD, whatever filters you use.


Re: CRT vs. LCD

It's not CRT Vs LCD, it's CRT > LCD.


Re: CRT vs. LCD

Hi all,

I already have a CRT groovymame setup and I would like to compare with an LCD setup.
What would the best setup to compare ?

LCD : low lag (less than 10ms)
CPU : Intel core i7 (is more than 1 core usefull ?)
GPU : a decent GPU (I heard that Intel HD4000 is not enough for HLSL), so maybe a cheap Geforce GTX
OS : Windows XP / 7 / 8 (any performance difference ?)
GROOVYMAME OPTIONS : ??? you tell me



Re: CRT vs. LCD

Hi BudSpencer,

I'd say the best LCD setup would require one of the new G-SYNC 4K monitors. Otherwise non-60 Hz games won't run smooth. Contrary to popular belief, non-60 Hz games are majority in arcade systems.

Keep in mind that the filters mentioned by Bulbousbeard are not HLSL but GLSL based filters. For those you need SDL MAME (he uses baseline compiled for SDL). For either HLSL or GLSL you need a powerful card, specially if you want to benefit from the higher resolutions to better mimic the CRT shadow mask. Intel video is plain crap. For reference, the first card I was able to run HLSL at full speed on 2560x1600 with was an AMD R9 270X, and it wasn't cheap. Filter guys seem to love Nvidia for some reason, so better search in that direction.

Regarding the CPU, yes, MAME benefits from having more than 1 core. As for the OS, people feel there's a performance increase from XP to 7 and from 7 to 8.