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 Post subject: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2019 4:53 am 



Joined: 14 Mar 2011
Posts: 105
Location: Sacramento, CA
I have moved my products off ebay and will be selling them now directly from my website.

https://www.retrotekshop.com/products

I have been off ebay for about 2 months now and finally have my products available again. The previous converters have gone through a design refresh and now have a plug and play TG16 amp available.


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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Tue Aug 20, 2019 12:36 pm 



Joined: 05 Dec 2012
Posts: 464
Have you fixed the power issues?

...and you never replied to any of my emails about your old converter (the one that failed when put on a scope). Should I just throw it out? Mail it back?


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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Tue Aug 20, 2019 1:20 pm 



Joined: 01 Mar 2018
Posts: 342
retrorgb wrote:
Have you fixed the power issues?

...and you never replied to any of my emails about your old converter (the one that failed when put on a scope). Should I just throw it out? Mail it back?


So between this (SCART-Comp) and the Shinybow, you'd have to recommend the Shinybow?


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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Tue Aug 20, 2019 10:15 pm 



Joined: 14 Mar 2011
Posts: 105
Location: Sacramento, CA
retrorgb wrote:
Have you fixed the power issues?

...and you never replied to any of my emails about your old converter (the one that failed when put on a scope). Should I just throw it out? Mail it back?

There have never been any power issues. I don't need the old one you can get rid of it.


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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2019 9:49 am 



Joined: 31 Jan 2019
Posts: 6
That's good news. Congrats! I saw that your products weren't available on ebay anymore, and wondered what happened. I have your vgactv transcoder, and it's well worth the price for what it does.


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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2019 2:27 pm 



Joined: 05 Dec 2012
Posts: 464
Fusion916 wrote:
There have never been any power issues.

So, what were all the issues then? Do you have scope captures showing all the issues from before and after that are fixed? Most importantly:

How on earth can you possibly justify such a high price, when the shinybow is just a few dollars more and never had any of the issues your product did?

I was "on your side" for quite a while, but your attitude and price speak for itself. BTW, Mike Chi's product is coming soon...how are you planning on competing with that?


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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2019 2:41 pm 


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Mike Chi's product? This?

https://twitter.com/retrotink2/status/1 ... 7674228736


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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2019 2:59 pm 



Joined: 19 Jul 2017
Posts: 1572
I didn't see any details on resolution regarding Mike Chi's solution (not sure if the fact that it's an analogue circuit has any bearing on the subject), but the one thing that Retrotek's VGA to component transcoder has over everything else is that it can handle everything from 240p to 1080p. If that hardware or a variant thereof were put into his SCART to component transcoder, then it would be more capable than the Shinybow, which tops out at 480p, and I believe other solutions are limited to 15kHz modes.

Speaking of higher-resolution modes, does the VGACTV2 correctly use Rec.601 for SD and ED modes, and Rec.709 for HD modes?


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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2019 4:58 pm 



Joined: 01 Jul 2017
Posts: 41
nmalinoski wrote:
analogue circuit has any bearing on the subject), but the one thing that Retrotek's VGA to component transcoder has over everything else is that it can handle everything from 240p to 1080p. If that hardware or a variant thereof were put into his SCART to component transcoder, then it would be more capable than the Shinybow, which tops out at 480p, and I believe other solutions are limited to 15kHz modes.

S


AFAIK, all these various designs are all analog transcoders. So any input from 240p to 1080i and everything in between will be transcoded. The only potential issues are (1) resolutions beyond 480p call for a bi-phasic sync pulse, which none of these devices can do. Having said that, I haven't seen this to cause a compatibility issue in practice. (2) I'm pretty sure all the analog transcoder circuits are using the Rec.601 coefficients, with no way of switching to 709. Also depending on the bandwidth of the circuit, high frequency details may get lost and artifacts may appear at sharp color boundries (check green-magenta) at higher resolutions.


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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2019 5:27 pm 


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retrorgb wrote:
Fusion916 wrote:
There have never been any power issues.

So, what were all the issues then? Do you have scope captures showing all the issues from before and after that are fixed? Most importantly:

How on earth can you possibly justify such a high price, when the shinybow is just a few dollars more and never had any of the issues your product did?

I was "on your side" for quite a while, but your attitude and price speak for itself. BTW, Mike Chi's product is coming soon...how are you planning on competing with that?

could you please elaborate on what these issues are exactly so the rest of us can have a frame of reference?


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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2019 6:10 pm 


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The Kramer FC-14 is the other option, here. According to the official specs, the Kramer FC-14 handles signals "above" 480p and goes all the way to 720p or 1080i. Most displays won't accept 1080p on component, anyhow.

https://www.fullcompass.com/common/file ... Manual.pdf

I am using an Extron RGB and a Kramer FC-14 and they outperform the Shinybow in my setup. To be fair, I haven't tried the Retrotek. I also haven't noticed the issues Mike mentions (with the FC-14), but that could be because I'm a pleb.

It would be great if we could identify an inexpensive and readily available solution that matches or exceeds the FC-14's performance and features; I believe it is the absolute best of the currently available solutions. There's a SCART to component variant of the FC-14, as well, but it's extremely difficult to get in the US (and still very hard to find elsewhere).
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Last edited by orange808 on Wed Aug 21, 2019 6:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2019 6:10 pm 


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mikechi2 wrote:
nmalinoski wrote:
analogue circuit has any bearing on the subject), but the one thing that Retrotek's VGA to component transcoder has over everything else is that it can handle everything from 240p to 1080p. If that hardware or a variant thereof were put into his SCART to component transcoder, then it would be more capable than the Shinybow, which tops out at 480p, and I believe other solutions are limited to 15kHz modes.

S


AFAIK, all these various designs are all analog transcoders. So any input from 240p to 1080i and everything in between will be transcoded. The only potential issues are (1) resolutions beyond 480p call for a bi-phasic sync pulse, which none of these devices can do. Having said that, I haven't seen this to cause a compatibility issue in practice. (2) I'm pretty sure all the analog transcoder circuits are using the Rec.601 coefficients, with no way of switching to 709. Also depending on the bandwidth of the circuit, high frequency details may get lost and artifacts may appear at sharp color boundries (check green-magenta) at higher resolutions.

AFAIK some of the sync strippers used aren't rated for frequencies above 15 or 31kHz which could mean they don't produce a working sync output (even bi-level)

I agree with everything else you posted, most devices will accept bi-level sync even if the resolution calls for tri-level


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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2019 6:21 pm 



Joined: 01 Jul 2017
Posts: 41
maxtherabbit wrote:
AFAIK some of the sync strippers used aren't rated for frequencies above 15 or 31kHz which could mean they don't produce a working sync output (even bi-level)



Good point. Good news is that 1080i (equivalent to 540p) isn't that much different from 480p. But I gotta check 720p (45kHz) before putting my foot in my mouth.

But are there any sources that actually generate 720p with a separate CSYNC line? I imagine they'd all be VGA based in which case a sync combiner, not a stripper is needed.


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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2019 6:29 pm 


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Posts: 1383
mikechi2 wrote:
maxtherabbit wrote:
AFAIK some of the sync strippers used aren't rated for frequencies above 15 or 31kHz which could mean they don't produce a working sync output (even bi-level)



Good point. Good news is that 1080i (equivalent to 540p) isn't that much different from 480p. But I gotta check 720p (45kHz) before putting my foot in my mouth.

But are there any sources that actually generate 720p with a separate CSYNC line? I imagine they'd all be VGA based in which case a sync combiner, not a stripper is needed.


Do you think an option that also accepts RGBHV and RGsB would be a possibility? :)
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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2019 6:30 pm 



Joined: 01 Jul 2017
Posts: 41
orange808 wrote:
mikechi2 wrote:
maxtherabbit wrote:
AFAIK some of the sync strippers used aren't rated for frequencies above 15 or 31kHz which could mean they don't produce a working sync output (even bi-level)



Good point. Good news is that 1080i (equivalent to 540p) isn't that much different from 480p. But I gotta check 720p (45kHz) before putting my foot in my mouth.

But are there any sources that actually generate 720p with a separate CSYNC line? I imagine they'd all be VGA based in which case a sync combiner, not a stripper is needed.


Do you think an option that also accepts RGBHV and RGsB would be a possibility? :)


Yes and yes -- it's really the same thing as the Raspberry Pi hat. But I'm going to shut up because I just realize I hijacked someone else's thread.


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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2019 8:42 pm 



Joined: 19 Jul 2017
Posts: 1572
mikechi2 wrote:
maxtherabbit wrote:
AFAIK some of the sync strippers used aren't rated for frequencies above 15 or 31kHz which could mean they don't produce a working sync output (even bi-level)



Good point. Good news is that 1080i (equivalent to 540p) isn't that much different from 480p. But I gotta check 720p (45kHz) before putting my foot in my mouth.

But are there any sources that actually generate 720p with a separate CSYNC line? I imagine they'd all be VGA based in which case a sync combiner, not a stripper is needed.

I don't think there's anything that will generate 720p RGBS out of the box--every console seems to go out of its way to avoid putting 31kHz+ on SCART--but there are some options. I think the only instance where you can get 720p RGBS directly out of a console is a PS2 with the SoG-disable mod. Everything else would require some combination of adapter, RGB interface/sync combiner, HDMI-to-VGA converter, or, in the case of the Xbox, a BIOS mod.


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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Thu Aug 22, 2019 12:29 am 


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One comment about the TG16 RGB amp as well - leaving all the pins in the expansion port connector is tantamount to gore. Those samtec connectors grip really hard across the 69 pins, and if you don't pull the connector off the port dead straight you start bending pins. Especially so when your design has the connector fully seated but the wings don't sit flush to the back of the console. (Maybe it's only really a risk with the PC Engines, and the TG16 is shaped differently around the port?)

I would recommend leaving only the pins you need (like 8?) plus a few more for stability. So maybe 9 on each end and 6 in the middle. It makes the connector much easier to remove and so the process becomes a bit safer.


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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Mon Aug 26, 2019 3:57 pm 



Joined: 05 Dec 2012
Posts: 464
maxtherabbit wrote:
retrorgb wrote:
Fusion916 wrote:
There have never been any power issues.

So, what were all the issues then? Do you have scope captures showing all the issues from before and after that are fixed? Most importantly:

How on earth can you possibly justify such a high price, when the shinybow is just a few dollars more and never had any of the issues your product did?

I was "on your side" for quite a while, but your attitude and price speak for itself. BTW, Mike Chi's product is coming soon...how are you planning on competing with that?

could you please elaborate on what these issues are exactly so the rest of us can have a frame of reference?

My apologies - This was discussed in the old thread. Not sure why there's a new one...

First and foremost, the Retrotek products I've tested work fine in many scenarios and WILL NOT damage your equipment. I gotta be annoyingly loud about this: The products I tested are perfectly safe to use, period.

...but some people were getting color tint issues, others not. I was sent a second revision to test which had different issues and I was able to capture problems with a scope that highlight the issue. I've tried to discuss this with Fusion, but he cut off communication, except for the sporadic posts here. He's also never sent any scope captures I've asked for, which should be a super easy thing to produce.

Overall, from a performance standpoint, it was by far the worst converter we tested and I removed all links to it from my site. Anyone who's worked with me before (even people that hate me) will vouch for me on this: Just talk to me and I'll try my best to help you. Disappearing leaves me to come to my own conclusions...which is that Fusion doesn't quite understand what the problem is, or how to fix it.

Regardless, at that price point, I wouldn't recommend it anyway. For $10 more you can get a Shinybow that was one of the best converters we tested and comes with a small, metal case. If the TINK converter is a good price, that'll be my main recommendation. I'll need to check the final production version on a scope to triple-check (no offence to Mike, but I like to be annoyingly thorough), but so far it's performed flawlessly across many devices in harsh enviornments (it survived a giant fighting game tournmant where is was used for about 72-hours strait).

Hopefully Fusion will someday have a cheaper, follow-up product that performs well.


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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Mon Aug 26, 2019 7:35 pm 


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retrorgb wrote:
My apologies - This was discussed in the old thread. Not sure why there's a new one...

First and foremost, the Retrotek products I've tested work fine in many scenarios and WILL NOT damage your equipment. I gotta be annoyingly loud about this: The products I tested are perfectly safe to use, period.

...but some people were getting color tint issues, others not. I was sent a second revision to test which had different issues and I was able to capture problems with a scope that highlight the issue. I've tried to discuss this with Fusion, but he cut off communication, except for the sporadic posts here. He's also never sent any scope captures I've asked for, which should be a super easy thing to produce.

Overall, from a performance standpoint, it was by far the worst converter we tested and I removed all links to it from my site. Anyone who's worked with me before (even people that hate me) will vouch for me on this: Just talk to me and I'll try my best to help you. Disappearing leaves me to come to my own conclusions...which is that Fusion doesn't quite understand what the problem is, or how to fix it.

Regardless, at that price point, I wouldn't recommend it anyway. For $10 more you can get a Shinybow that was one of the best converters we tested and comes with a small, metal case. If the TINK converter is a good price, that'll be my main recommendation. I'll need to check the final production version on a scope to triple-check (no offence to Mike, but I like to be annoyingly thorough), but so far it's performed flawlessly across many devices in harsh enviornments (it survived a giant fighting game tournmant where is was used for about 72-hours strait).

Hopefully Fusion will someday have a cheaper, follow-up product that performs well.

thanks, I don't suppose you also tested the LinuxBot transcoder as well? the one from New Zealand


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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Tue Aug 27, 2019 5:33 am 



Joined: 04 Apr 2014
Posts: 673
I can confirm that the altered colors matter is a thing. I've only used the Retrotech VGA to component adapter and when compared with the Audio Authority one all shades of dark red were more purple on the Retrotech, where as the Audio Authority accurately displayed them as they should. I think that adapter is still a solid product but I just wouldn't recommend it over some others.


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 Post subject: Re: Retrotek Products
PostPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2019 3:57 pm 



Joined: 05 Dec 2012
Posts: 464
maxtherabbit wrote:
thanks, I don't suppose you also tested the LinuxBot transcoder as well? the one from New Zealand

I'm sorry, I have not.


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