DF Direct: Modern Games look amazing on CRT!

Just started it but it features the Sony FW900 hnnngh

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No kidding. Sure, HDR with OLED in 4K looks great, but there’s still something far more natural in how a CRT renderes HD images to my eyes.

Giant rear-projection sets are amazing too if you can find one with good convergence and have a small army to help move it. Rear projection is still my preferred way of watching sports too.


I can’t believe how much they were putting down 4k. You can hear the excitement of them discovering how good these old monitors are. Reminds me of when I found an old Compaq SVGA monitor in the attic years ago and hooked up the Wii, I was blown away at the motion resolution and now that’s my preferred way to play most consoles. I agree, there’s something about how HD images look on a CRT, I found Halo 5 to be rather unattractive but on a CRT it looks really good, it’s actual magic.

I think my only experience with rear projections was playing SF3: Third Strike at the arcades, it has it’s own distinct look but I’ve not spent much time with one to say how much I like them. Same goes for Plasma’s which I’ve heard people rave about.

I wonder if this video will cause a small bump in CRT monitor prices? I still need to pickup a 21"…

Watched a quick moment of the video - no kidding guys.

I’ve been shouting the same thing for years. Sample and hold on flat panels just isn’t comparable to a CRT. It’s funny to me that the DF guys are just discovering this now. Good for them - they have a ton of amazing gaming ahead.

I also love that they debunk the need for increasing resolutions by discussing the lack of fixed pixels.

RIP collectors, after this video it will be impossible to find a decent PC CRT.

I love me some CRTs, but that’s a heck of an undersell/statement imo. It is a different feel though there’s no doubt about that.

Regardless, always fun to see people excited about CRTs. I did some light searching for a PC CRT a while back but didn’t get very far. Probably for the best as I don’t have any space and I’m not sure how to justify to my wife yet another CRT in the house :sweat_smile:

I used to have a very, very tiny CRT which was in the family and I could easily carry it around as I lived in different places over the last few years. Unfortunately it’s died a year or two ago. It was my preferred way of playing PS2 games as I only had the original cables and playing it on an LCD made everything look horribly awful. I liked how vivid the image looked.

I don’t currently have much space available and I’m trying my best not to own too many things, but if I could I would definitely have a CRT for some old-school goodness. I just love the way games look on them.

EDIT: it’s fun to see how giddy they sound and it’s almost hard for them to contain their excitement. It’s so funny and ironic given the nature of the channel and its relationship with cutting edge content. Love DF.

PS2 games look so, so good on my 13 inch CCTV.

Interesting video for sure. I have been sitting on a large PC CRT for a while and haven’t had the chance to get it yet. A friend in the next province over grabbed it for me, for free. In even more excited to get it now!

It’s a Trinitron model from 1998, a 21" Dell Ultrascan 1600HS. It’s got VGA and RGB inputs.


I feel pretty sad when I see this video for the obvious reasons crt was left behind, but a real problem is how important it is to keep the majority “out of the know” so a market doesn’t spike itself out of availability. The DF video does bring this awareness to the public and I fear it doesn’t help now that trying to buy a tube is just going to become out of reach.

This hurts me plenty as well as my old monitor is about shot and in need of a replacement. If they were to somehow go back into production, I wouldn’t be so down on it.

We had a similar situation on shmups where a transcoder was given a good overview and it went from $50 to $150-200 just because the right people were brought to attention to it. Cause and effect folks! Gotta learn not to throw out intel.

I think the size/weight issue along with the aspect ratio will deter some but then again that hasn’t stopped consumer CRT sets spiking so who knows. It’s funny how all consumer sets are now “retro gamer” tvs on eBay worth a ton more then it was before these non-gamers caught on to the hobby.

Man, now I want a CRT for HD too!

Making me want a 16:10 CRT Monitor now.

Well worth checking out what custom resolutions your old CRT monitors can do.

My Hitachi CM802E is fine running at 4096x3072 at up to 75hz.
It is just a shame that it ideally needs 300% scaling for windows.

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I remember seeing Breath of the Wild running on an FW900 a while back, here’s the video. Picture looks incredible


The way a CRT softens the image works so well for the BotW IQ. Mario Kart 8 is another one of those games that looks a bit harsh (less so in motion) on an LCD but really shines on a PC CRT.

I’ve had a CRT stored in my parents house for years now because I’d love to use it for my Mega Drive mainly. It’s just my apartment is so damn small, I have absolutely no space for it.

Every time I play HD games on my PVM 20L5 (it maxes out at 1080i and 720p) it looks phenomenal.

In particular, playing Splatoon 1 on it with a Wii U gamepad for motion controls was completely revelatory. It felt almost liquid-smooth moving the gamepad and seeing the camera from a 60fps hd game panning around the environment with such a fast refresh rate. I felt so in-sync with it in a way I’ve never otherwise experienced with camera controls.

It was kind of orgasmic. The issue is, of course, the fact that I’m playing letterboxed on a 20" CRT. Meaning it’s a very small, very high quality picture, but ultimately not quite as enjoyable as chilling on the couch with a 60", albeit less pretty and slower LED screen.

That said, 1080i or 720p (it doesn’t matter which) when displayed natively on a CRT is nicer looking than downsampled 1080p on my 1080p native set. It’s just so liquid smooth at 60fps along with the faster input. It gains a lot from the experience.

The best example I can think of regarding this experience is playing 480p-native games on the CRT. It looks nicer than HD games at times despite there still being some occasional aliasing.

Fixed pixel displays really forced everyone to pay attention to resolution as a top priority at the expense of a lot of other potentially great uses of tech. It’s a shame.

I’d totally buy a widescreen multisync monitor like the Sony FW900 if given the chance. Seems like a great way to play.

I remember Kat posted that video after Phonedork was showing off his on one of his bvm’s. He’s actually got a wide monitor.

Eyes CRT collection lovingly

I’m happy to see them mention PC CRTs as viable high refresh rate monitors. My Viewsonic Af90+ does 1280x1024 @ 85Hz, 1024x768 @ 100Hz, or anything lower at 120Hz. I was playing the Spyro Reignited Trilogy last night and found even a letterboxed 19" image at 1024x768p100Hz looked better to me than my 1080p60 flat panel, and what’s more it felt better due to the high FPS.

I do need a new HDMI>VGA adapter though, it took forever to find one that worked with my monitors but now I can see it crushes black levels. Going straight into my Mobo things look great, but I can’t run very many modern games on integrated graphics.

I’ve not tested these with higher than 60hz refresh rates but I use these two:

-No black crush
-No power supply needed
-Cheap-ish (you can gamble on a handful of DACs from aliexpress for the price of one of these though)
-Doesn’t work with MiSTer’s new 240p mode
-Don’t think it works with a Switch

HD Fury Nano GX
-No black crush
-Gamma wheel (although I haven’t found a use for it)
-Works with Switch iirc
-Needs a power supply (can be powered on its own but found that it put out a bad picture without, at least that was the case when I tried with an OSSC)
-RRP Price (although much cheaper on eBay)
-Discontinued but still available in some places

MLIG recommends this one

I’ve seen a Porta DAC recommended over on the shmups forum which I tried but saw black crush, could be they changed the chip inside or I got unlucky with a faulty one.

@BeerMonkey mentioned that an open source community made Gaming DAC could possibly be a thing

Wow thanks! I’ve tried many similar to the Tendak and they do not hold sync with some of my monitors (Viewsonic, Mitsubishi), so I’m wary of those. It not working with the MiSTer (for now I suppose) also makes me think it would have issues like the others.

The Rankie looks like the Cablematters one I have right now, but for that price I’ll give it a shot before investing in the HD Fury. I just hope it can do 1280x960@85Hz.


For those playing on 4:3 screens and finding most games letterbox these days, I’ve had good luck with a program called Flawless Widescreen. It has fixes for many games and seems targeted to 21:9 users. I use it to force 4:3 and it seems to work more often than not.

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Amazing. I’d love to give this a shot someday.