The Gp2x Is Dead!

Tobriand

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Rico said:
DaveC said:
Yes and when you letterbox the sides you have to scale fractionally both directions by doubling some pixels, and not others as 220 doesn't go into 272 evenly. Then you put a *filter* over that to blend it together. When you do that you lose sharpness and contrast, that is a fact.

No, you don't "double some pixels", you completely redraw the image, with each pixel created from a combination of nearby pixels in the source image. The "filter" is what determines which source pixels are selected, e.g. Gaussian blur. This process, if done correctly, will not result in a significant drop in visual quality, as I'm sure people who watch movies and upscaled games on their PSP/DSs can attest.
Off Topic: Rico! Good to see you again - where have you been the last year or two?
 
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Nova

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Tobriand said:
Off Topic: Rico! Good to see you again - where have you been the last year or two?
Slipzone.
 
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Azure

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Rico said:
DaveC said:
Yes and when you letterbox the sides you have to scale fractionally both directions by doubling some pixels, and not others as 220 doesn't go into 272 evenly. Then you put a *filter* over that to blend it together. When you do that you lose sharpness and contrast, that is a fact.

No, you don't "double some pixels", you completely redraw the image, with each pixel created from a combination of nearby pixels in the source image. The "filter" is what determines which source pixels are selected, e.g. Gaussian blur. This process, if done correctly, will not result in a significant drop in visual quality, as I'm sure people who watch movies and upscaled games on their PSP/DSs can attest.

Yowzers, I didn't expect to see Rico posting again. How have you been?
 
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waffles

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RICO, MY COUSIN!
WELCOME TO PANDORICA!
>_>
anyway, gp2xes are far from "cheap" on ebay, netting around 110 for an f100 and 160 for an f200, which is a lot higher than 50 for a psp with a broken UMD drive (which is not required for ISOs)
 

daclassicgamingmaster

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waffles said:
RICO, MY COUSIN!
WELCOME TO PANDORICA!
>_>
anyway, gp2xes are far from "cheap" on ebay, netting around 110 for an f100 and 160 for an f200, which is a lot higher than 50 for a psp with a broken UMD drive (which is not required for ISOs)
You joined like 3 months ago, how can you know of Rico?

Sphinxter said:
The GP2X was open, that alone trumped over all other platforms.. Having a few valid points doesn't make you any less of an asshole, sig that.
LOL. Well, if chad doesn't deem that worthy enough to sig, then I will.
 
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Exophase

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Sphinxter said:
The GP2X was open, that alone trumped over all other platforms.. Having a few valid points doesn't make you any less of an asshole, sig that.
Does having no valid points make you less of one? :eek:

You guys can bandy about how open a platform isn't, but when everyone is running code on them just the same it kinda makes it a pointless ideological argument, don't you think...
 
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nubie

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Rico said:
DaveC said:
Yes and when you letterbox the sides you have to scale fractionally both directions by doubling some pixels, and not others as 220 doesn't go into 272 evenly. Then you put a *filter* over that to blend it together. When you do that you lose sharpness and contrast, that is a fact.

No, you don't "double some pixels", you completely redraw the image, with each pixel created from a combination of nearby pixels in the source image. The "filter" is what determines which source pixels are selected, e.g. Gaussian blur. This process, if done correctly, will not result in a significant drop in visual quality, as I'm sure people who watch movies and upscaled games on their PSP/DSs can attest.

Right, I am sure that there is high-quality content being viewed on a PSP/DS all the time.

Ugh, we are talking about a very specific source material, with small sprites and textures, any mucking whatsoever messes up the "quality" by which I mean the sharpness and accuracy of the image.

Try smearing vaseline on your glasses, oh, I mean a "guassian blur" on your glasses. You kinda just lost your whole point seeing as your explanation contained the word blur in its name, which by definition means "remove sharpness".

The video that is likely to be shown on these handhelds is of such poor quality (barely a step above youtube) that this resampling can't do much more to hurt it. If you use proper video sources you will be able to see instantly the difference in quality between blurred and native pixels (and some DVDs I have come across are worse than Youtube, there was even an outcry over some of the early titles on HD-DVD/Blu Ray that looked worse than a regular DVD.)

Ugh, forget the fact that most emulators have native res options, it doesn't matter because the PSP simply has the worst screen I have ever seen (I know most people can't see it, for the life of me I don't know why. I have actually checked a straight line of text on an acquaintance's TV and noticed that it had 20% distortion, the word looked like it was going into a whirlpool, she squinted at the set and said "I have never had any problem with it before".)

PS

Pillarboxing, it is a common term. Letterboxing means the picture resembles a Letter-Box or mail slot such as you would see in your door. Pillar boxing? Yes, it means that it appears there are pillars on the sides of the image.

I don't care, I honestly don't. And yes, when I play an emulator on the PC I can use a projector to make a 15" GB screen or a 30" Nintendo screen, with native pixel resolution.
 
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therealadmin

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Gruso said:
:lol: I'm down for penning some Megadeth inspired '2X anthems. "Symphony of Instructions", that sort of thing.
I'm thinking "Gaming Wars... The Pandora Due..." Explains how the GP2X, NDS, etc... couldn't cut the mustard and how the Pandora is just kicking the shit out of all of them.
 
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WizardStan

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nubie said:
I don't care, I honestly don't. And yes, when I play an emulator on the PC I can use a projector to make a 15" GB screen or a 30" Nintendo screen, with native pixel resolution.
Two points, if I may.
1) the "native pixel resolution" is not what you would have seen on your TV. The SNES has a native pixel resolution of 256x224, but an NTSC TV has 704x480 viewable area, which means the SNES was already doing some upscaling and "blurring" to fit your TV. By viewing them at their native pixel resolution, you're actually not seeing them as you would have back in the 80s and 90s.
2) you have no idea what you're missing. Or maybe you do and have chosen otherwise. In either case, some of the "blurring" algorithms actually make a lot of games a lot better in my opinion. Especially at such large sizes, where the pixels become more like duplo blocks, a little bit of blur can be a wonderful thing. Even on my tiny 6' projector screen I always use Super Eagle. I can't begin to imagine the sharpness obvious on a 30' screen, but I personally find such emphasized angles a bit ugly. Maybe you like them, but I'd suggest at least giving the different algorithms a try. Most emulators have 4 or 5 different ones to pick and choose from, and different games look better in different ways.
GSnes9x even has a TV mode which will "blur" it to a native TV resolution to bring it more in line with what it would have looked like back in the day.
 
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gruso

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WizardStan said:
1) the "native pixel resolution" is not what you would have seen on your TV. The SNES has a native pixel resolution of 256x224, but an NTSC TV has 704x480 viewable area, which means the SNES was already doing some upscaling and "blurring" to fit your TV. By viewing them at their native pixel resolution, you're actually not seeing them as you would have back in the 80s and 90s.

...and this is how the GP2X won me over. Seeing those old games in crisp native resolution on a small screen made them look better than they did in the past (the first time I saw Metal Slug on the GP2X I nearly fell over).
 
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Spadoof

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I really hope if GPH comes out with a new system it will have great battery life.


A little treat for eveyone - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EBDglC26KfY :p

-Spadoof :gp2x

You soon will be mine :pandora1:
 
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chad78

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Exophase said:
You guys can bandy about how open a platform isn't, but when everyone is running code on them just the same it kinda makes it a pointless ideological argument, don't you think...
This house has no doors, only door-sized holes. This house had doors at one point, but they have all been kicked it. Which house is more open?

Yes, Exophase. You are exactly right. The argument is completely idealogical, and in no way a reflection on the practical reality of the situation. Whether or not the builders put doors on the house - neither house has any doors now. Someone might come by every once and a while and prop the doors back in place in the doorways - but before they can even begin to find the hinges, someone's already knocked the door back down.
 
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gruso

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chad78 said:
This house has no doors, only door-sized holes. This house had doors at one point, but they have all been kicked it. Which house is more open?

The GP2X has freshly Windexed windows though. The PSP has those frosted ones they use in toilets.

:p x 1000
 
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DaveC

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WizardStan said:
Two points, if I may.
1) the "native pixel resolution" is not what you would have seen on your TV. The SNES has a native pixel resolution of 256x224, but an NTSC TV has 704x480 viewable area, which means the SNES was already doing some upscaling and "blurring" to fit your TV. By viewing them at their native pixel resolution, you're actually not seeing them as you would have back in the 80s and 90s.
2) you have no idea what you're missing. Or maybe you do and have chosen otherwise. In either case, some of the "blurring" algorithms actually make a lot of games a lot better in my opinion. Especially at such large sizes, where the pixels become more like duplo blocks, a little bit of blur can be a wonderful thing. Even on my tiny 6' projector screen I always use Super Eagle. I can't begin to imagine the sharpness obvious on a 30' screen, but I personally find such emphasized angles a bit ugly. Maybe you like them, but I'd suggest at least giving the different algorithms a try.
1 Well the SNES didn't really "upscale" on a regular CRT. It output a different horizontal scan timing that actually elongated the pixels. You can't do that on an LCD. There you have to do all kinds of doubling, averaging, filtering, etc and it doesn't look very good at all. Also none of the old systems used interlace mode (480) that you mention (except for 1 or 2 games like 2 player split screen on Sonic 2). Most all ran in non-interlace mode that was half the vertical resolution.

2 You are now talking about displaying emulators on big TV sets. That is something totally different. I am not talking about 6' screens but 3.5" ones. Nothing there will look like "duplo blocks" unless you are scaling up a GB game. I have run emulators on PC monitors and big TVs and without filtering they are sharp but a blocky mess. With filtering they look fuzzy. Which is better there? I don't like either, which is why I don't play retro games on big TV screens.

Rico said:
No, you don't "double some pixels", you completely redraw the image, with each pixel created from a combination of nearby pixels in the source image. The "filter" is what determines which source pixels are selected, e.g. Gaussian blur. This process, if done correctly, will not result in a significant drop in visual quality, as I'm sure people who watch movies and upscaled games on their PSP/DSs can attest.
Not true on the emulators I have tried. Most of them stretch the image by selectively doubling pixels, then bi-linear filtering them. Either way there definetly is a significant drop in image quality. It just looks blurry, and the averaging lowers the contrast a bit. It is harder to tell this with movies. I think there it is mainly due to the fact that movies are soft to begin with. There aren't many movies with sharp edges, 1 pixel wide lines, tiny sprites etc that are common in old games. The best scaling I have seen in emulators for handhelds is the horizontal only scaling found in PicoDrive and GPFCE. It only does it horizontally and it just averages the pixels it needs to and not the others. Even with that some edges aren't as sharp but it is to the point where it looks good enough.
 
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GernotFrisch

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The whole conversation is about resolutions for emulators. Is there no other reason for you to get a new device? Are you not interested in new games?
You can play emulated games on a GP2X - who cares about NES/MD/MAME on the new device, then?
 

kuehnau

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chad78 said:
Sphinxter said:
chad78 said:
dsraa said:
Please, enlighten us with another system that can do this much emulation of older systems, and homebrew software and games.
The PSP.Hahahaha, good one.Not as the Pandora. As the GP2X, which is what we are talking about. And, yes, the PSP can do any system the GP2X can do. More, actually. How many PS1 games can the GP2X play?
WizardStan said:
Add a keyboard, touchscreen, and bluetooth, and the Pandora and PSP become reasonably comparable in terms of features. It's even got DosBox ported to it, though keyboard support is obviously quite limited.
That's true. The PSP homebrew scene has done a lot. But I think the Pandora will be much, much better.
I am not sure what to say on that subject. The fact is, you can pick up a Sony PSP and a half decent game and still save money compared to the Pandora. $300+ is a lot to drop down on a open source piece of hardware like that, and it can be disappointing or frustrating having to rely on a community of users to provide you with a selection of games instead of a well founded company.

Don't get me wrong, I love my GP2X very much, and if sometime in the future I do see some sort of revision to the original come out after this, I might just buy it. My GP2X has provided me hours and hours of fun. But as far as the Pandora is concerned, it is simply too much and I am afraid at how little might actually come of it. I know with at least my PSP I will have high quality games coming at me for a few years to come yet, many of them will support online game play, I have a functional browser built in, as well as a media player, with a nice screen and then if I ever want to, I can easily mod my PSP and let me play a huge amount of emulated games.

On a side note, some of the designs of the Pandora I dislike, especially the whole clam shelled style hand held. I'd much rather have a advanced version of the GP2X, with backwards compatibility and more ram/cpu/whatever to it then the Pandora. Maybe in a year, or two, or whatever, I might get a Pandora. But it won't be for a good long time. I mean.. I didn't buy my GP2X until 5 months ago and I knew about the company and their hardware since the GP handheld.
 
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sbock

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QUOTE
You can play emulated games on a GP2X - who cares about NES/MD/MAME on the new device, then?


Hmm, people who's GP2x is sold, not working or who never had a GP2x perhaps? People who like, buy and collect tech gadgets? People who never liked the GP2x , but this new device?
FYI, I care about...
 

Exophase

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DaveC said:
1 Well the SNES didn't really "upscale" on a regular CRT. It output a different horizontal scan timing that actually elongated the pixels. You can't do that on an LCD. There you have to do all kinds of doubling, averaging, filtering, etc and it doesn't look very good at all. Also none of the old systems used interlace mode (480) that you mention (except for 1 or 2 games like 2 player split screen on Sonic 2). Most all ran in non-interlace mode that was half the vertical resolution.
I've told you this before but you didn't really believe me, I'm kinda surprised since you know more about electronics than I do.. but I'll repeat myself. NTSC CRT TV sets are not magical analog devices that have variable pixel sizes. There is a fixed number of phosphors, and unlike decent CRT monitors there are neither a lot of them nor are they as square. Now it's true that there's a 1:1 ratio for scanlines for all game platforms to TVs (that I know of), but the scanlines themselves are being filtered across a fixed number of pixels in a higher (but not that much higher) resolution. There's also all kinds of other artifacts between the DAC on the platform, the kind of cables used, and the NTSC stuff going on. Games even relied on this, which is why you get "NTSC filters" for emulators. And the "non-interlace" mode you speak of also produced visible black scanlines inbetween the normal image scanlines. What we saw on our TV screens is a far cry from what emulators product on CRT, much less LCD monitors without filters applied. If anything CRT TVs looked blurry/fuzzy, which helped mask how low resolution the images were. I saw FF8 being played on a TV much larger than my monitor was and unlike the PC version I couldn't so easily pick out the pixels in the background (despite that they said they applied a filter to them)

There is absolutely no doubling going on in any filter I've ever seen, that's kind of the point of using them. The pixel information is evenly distributed across the image, not dumped on any particular pixel boundaries. You don't seem to have a problem with the kind of horizontal scaling used in Picodrive, but this is just a limited approximation of linear interpolation. A game on PSP that is rendered at 320x224 then scaled to the appropriate resolution will be bilinear filtered. I can't imagine any emulator would scale it with nearest neighbor then try to reblit the scaled image with bilinear filtering, since that'd waste all kinds of rendering/texture bandwidth. If you think there are doubled pixels then you're probably imagining them because it makes no sense.

DaveC said:
2 You are now talking about displaying emulators on big TV sets. That is something totally different. I am not talking about 6' screens but 3.5" ones. Nothing there will look like "duplo blocks" unless you are scaling up a GB game. I have run emulators on PC monitors and big TVs and without filtering they are sharp but a blocky mess. With filtering they look fuzzy. Which is better there? I don't like either, which is why I don't play retro games on big TV screens.
You have particular tastes about this, but do you really think everyone is going to refuse to play old games on big TVs?

IMO the degredation of contrast is a bigger issue on bilinear filtering than blur. It would be great if a bicubic filter could be used instead. I think that something like this can be approximated in hardware with several texture blits with alpha blending at various coefficients. I tried it on PSP once, but I wasn't really doing it correctly so I couldn't get it working at full speed and didn't really work on it for long. I don't really know if it would have ever been fast enough or not.
 
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Rico

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nubie said:
Right, I am sure that there is high-quality content being viewed on a PSP/DS all the time.

Ugh, we are talking about a very specific source material, with small sprites and textures, any mucking whatsoever messes up the "quality" by which I mean the sharpness and accuracy of the image.

Try smearing vaseline on your glasses, oh, I mean a "guassian blur" on your glasses. You kinda just lost your whole point seeing as your explanation contained the word blur in its name, which by definition means "remove sharpness".
I'll first address your point on blurring.

Try doing some experiments in Photoshop. Low-quality image data such as video can be upscaled without deterioration as there is little information in the image already. The Gaussian filter does cause a "blur", but the extent of this blur effect is highly variable. Take this 320x200 shot of Blade Runner, resized to 480x300 via a truncated Gaussian (bicubic) filter. There is no loss in image quality. Furthermore, in motion, the brain makes various inferences based on past frames of animation that increase the apparent quality.





High-quality, sharp sprite data could be upscaled via hq2x or hq4x before resampling down to native resolution. This approach is used by most PC emulators today - it is quite costly CPU-wise, but I'm sure Pandora could do it for 16-bit consoles at least.
 
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