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 Post subject: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2018 6:51 pm 



Joined: 13 Aug 2018
Posts: 128
Lately I've discovered what seem to be a class of old Japanese superguns like the Sigma. Many have two controllers built in. Are these typically high quality with excellent compatibility across PCBs?


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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2018 7:07 pm 



Joined: 11 Sep 2014
Posts: 291
shmupsrocks wrote:
Lately I've discovered what seem to be a class of old Japanese superguns like the Sigma. Many have two controllers built in. Are these typically high quality with excellent compatibility across PCBs?



Jamma is a universal standard. In fact, it was invented by the Japanese (the J stands for Japan).


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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2018 7:14 pm 



Joined: 13 Aug 2018
Posts: 128
From what I understand, some superguns work with some JAMMA PCBs but not others.


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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 2:14 pm 


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Joined: 26 Jan 2005
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Location: NJ USA
I have collected a bunch of the various superguns made in Japan through the years, and overall I like the Sigma control boxes the most. I think those modular units are a bit more versatile than the ones w/built in controls, which take up more space. When I got my first PCB back in 2004, the supergun that I used was the Sigma AV7000 along with its proprietary controller, the Hexa 9000TB stick. It is made by a company that manufactured Pachinko machines and arcade cabinets in Japan, so the build quality is top of the line. Definitely recommended.


Performance-wise it is very dependable, since the AV7000 is little more than an arcade PSU with attached connectors for a JAMMA harness, A/V + controller ports all enclosed in a tidy metal case. No moving parts besides switches and dials, so it'll last a lifetime with proper care. The controller is also very sturdy, with nearly all metal construction and using standard arcade parts by Seimitsu (LS-32 joystick & PS-14-G pushbuttons). Setup is quite simple too, as there is little to adjust and everything is clearly labelled. Just plug everything in & play.


I haven't had issues operating any of the games that I own. I've played a wide variety of hardware with it, ranging from huge multi-layer '80s PCBs to systems like Atomiswave, MVS, CPS2, F3, G-NET & PGM. It's even capable of running a Naomi 2 GD-ROM & DIMM setup through a Capcom I/O interface, after adjusting the voltage a bit. An important thing to note is that I've always used 15 kHz compatible RGB CRTs for the display. One of the more common issues I've read about regarding superguns involves the video signal and getting them to work with upscaler devices. Something to consider before making any purchases.


A couple of useful videos:
https://youtu.be/XNsfASK-ifk
https://youtu.be/_RUVeQ7fgjU

Thread about numerous models of superguns:
https://forum.arcadeotaku.com/viewtopic.php?t=19661

A shop that carries most of the currently available superguns in Japan:
https://www.tops-game.jp/products/list. ... egory_id=1
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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 3:48 pm 



Joined: 13 Aug 2018
Posts: 128
Thanks! I'd love to try a Sigma Hakuryu.


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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 10:19 pm 


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Location: NJ USA
I have the previous model, the Sigma Raijin. It is the same for the most part, except it has grey toned metal with an illustration of the Japanese god of thunder on top and a different power plug.

It's a sturdy piece of hardware; you can expect high quality with any of the Sigma superguns. Shipping that beast is costly though.
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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2018 4:37 pm 



Joined: 11 Sep 2014
Posts: 291
shmupsrocks wrote:
From what I understand, some superguns work with some JAMMA PCBs but not others.


That sounds wrong. Jamma is a universal standard and the Jamma edge is just a means of connecting PCBs to monitors, PSUs and controls.

It's possible that some PCBs won't work with some monitors. E.g. An ega game like Narc on a cga crt.

More likely, someone tried a game that didn't work and just assumed incorrectly that is was a compatibility issue.

Jamma is specifically designed as a standard to allow operators to switch out games without changing the whole cab. There are some older games and larger dedicated cab games that didn't use Jamma boards but, for the most part, Jamma was the standard.


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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2018 5:43 pm 



Joined: 13 Aug 2018
Posts: 128
Has anyone used a HAS supergun with a Taito F3 board? I think I've heard about trouble there.


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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2018 6:18 pm 



Joined: 04 May 2014
Posts: 180
Location: germany
yes, I also vote for the AV7000 together with any of the TB sticks available for it.
for western superguns my vote goes to the MAS System`s Super Nova (with built-in GBS-8220) and their famous MAS sticks. This is just a massive beast which serves me well for years.


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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2018 10:09 am 



Joined: 13 Aug 2018
Posts: 128
What does the AV7000 + TB stick do that the Hakuryu doesn't?


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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2018 3:16 pm 


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Posts: 474
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shmupsrocks wrote:
Has anyone used a HAS supergun with a Taito F3 board? I think I've heard about trouble there.


HAS works with all JAMMA games. Where/what "trouble" did you hear?
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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2018 3:23 pm 



Joined: 13 Aug 2018
Posts: 128
RGB wrote:
shmupsrocks wrote:
Has anyone used a HAS supergun with a Taito F3 board? I think I've heard about trouble there.


HAS works with all JAMMA games. Where/what "trouble" did you hear?


Here it is:

viewtopic.php?p=1330985#p1330985


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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2018 3:28 pm 


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Location: Europe
That post wasn't precise at all (no mention about display/upscaler he used) and you also got it a bit wrong. I'll put it this way, HAS is the only supergun on the market that DOES work with the Taito F3 and XRGB mini upscaler (and also the OSSC via the VGA port).
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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Thu Nov 08, 2018 4:39 pm 



Joined: 13 Aug 2018
Posts: 128
llaoyllakcuf wrote:
I haven't had issues operating any of the games that I own. I've played a wide variety of hardware with it, ranging from huge multi-layer '80s PCBs to systems like Atomiswave, MVS, CPS2, F3, G-NET & PGM. It's even capable of running a Naomi 2 GD-ROM & DIMM setup through a Capcom I/O interface, after adjusting the voltage a bit. An important thing to note is that I've always used 15 kHz compatible RGB CRTs for the display. One of the more common issues I've read about regarding superguns involves the video signal and getting them to work with upscaler devices.


I have a Sigma AV7000 now and it works great via S-video and composite into my Dell LCD with everything I've tried except Raiden 2, Raiden Fighters 2, Strikers, and UN Squadron (CPS1). I get audio but no video with the first two, brightness is way too high and colors way too washed out with Strikers, and UN Squadron has funny vertical lines through certain sprites. I was also able to try with a Sigma Hakuryu and the results were the same. Have you tried any of those boards?


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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2018 11:09 am 


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I'm pretty sure I used my HAS to play Gekirindan. I'd much rather use a HAS than some ancient Sigma.


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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2018 1:35 pm 



Joined: 13 Aug 2018
Posts: 128
Sigmas are still rolling off the line. Having said that, I'd rather use a HAS too. I wish they were available.


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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2018 11:25 pm 


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Joined: 26 Jan 2005
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Location: NJ USA
shmupsrocks wrote:
llaoyllakcuf wrote:
I haven't had issues operating any of the games that I own. I've played a wide variety of hardware with it, ranging from huge multi-layer '80s PCBs to systems like Atomiswave, MVS, CPS2, F3, G-NET & PGM. It's even capable of running a Naomi 2 GD-ROM & DIMM setup through a Capcom I/O interface, after adjusting the voltage a bit. An important thing to note is that I've always used 15 kHz compatible RGB CRTs for the display. One of the more common issues I've read about regarding superguns involves the video signal and getting them to work with upscaler devices.


I have a Sigma AV7000 now and it works great via S-video and composite into my Dell LCD with everything I've tried except Raiden 2, Raiden Fighters 2, Strikers, and UN Squadron (CPS1). I get audio but no video with the first two, brightness is way too high and colors way too washed out with Strikers, and UN Squadron has funny vertical lines through certain sprites. I was also able to try with a Sigma Hakuryu and the results were the same. Have you tried any of those boards?


Out of your list I just have Raiden 2 and all four Strikers games. But I also have Viper Phase-1 which is on the same hardware as Raiden Fighters 2, plus a handful of CPS1 titles.

As mentioned earlier, I only use the RGB port from either the Sigma AV7000 or Raijin and connect that directly to my CRT monitors (a 13" Amiga 1080 and a 19" Sony GVM-2020).

The only display issues that I've had are a skewed image or edges of the screen getting cut off from the top or side. You can kinda see it in these pics I took a while ago, excuse the poor quality: LINK

I've never had problems like non-working video or too much brightness & washed out colors with any of those titles. But the lines in the sprites you described sounds like it might be a graphics problem with the PCB. If you can compare the S-video or composite to the RGB output of the supergun you can determine if it's caused by the video signal or the game board itself.
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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2018 11:55 pm 



Joined: 13 Aug 2018
Posts: 128
What connection type are you using for RGB to those TVs? I need to buy a small 9" composite CRT just for testing.

Care to give any of those a try with composite (or S-video) to see if there's an incompatibility with the encoder in the Sigma?

EDIT: FWIW it's not Raiden Fighters 2 I'm having trouble with it's Raiden Fighters 1.


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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Wed Nov 14, 2018 3:00 am 


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Location: NJ USA
I'm using modified cables that an old forum member here made for me. They have a DIN 8 plug for the Sigma RGB port which connects to M/F DB9 plugs for each of the monitors' inputs.

If you're going to buy a small CRT, why not get one of those pro broadcast monitors? Just look up the model number beforehand to confirm that it has an RGB input & support for 15kHz horizontal frequency.

If it has BNC connectors on the back panel then you can just buy a SCART cable for the Sigma superguns along with a BNC adapter. For RGB connections other than BNC, you would need to look up the pinout for that monitor and get a custom made video cable.

An old CRT that accepts "low res" 15kHz RGB signals just works a lot better with most arcade boards. The screen geometry won't be perfect, but I think that's a small trade-off for the zero input lag, faster response time and better handling of nonstandard refresh rates vs. modern displays.


As for testing the Sigma's encoder- sorry but I never really used the composite & S-video cables with the supergun and lost track of them years ago. I already had my RGB monitor setup when I first started to collect arcade games, and it's all I've ever needed since then.
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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Wed Nov 14, 2018 3:52 am 



Joined: 26 Jan 2005
Posts: 951
The big advantage I see with Sigma AV7000 vs Sigma Raijin is the ability to use your own custom joystick as a supplement to the already awesome Sigma TB9000. The pinout via Din-13 is one to one so you can built your own rotary or spinner controller to work with the AV7000 and enjoy Ikari Warrior , Arkanoid etc... without having to mess with the Supergun's chassis (i.e. Raijin).


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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Thu Nov 15, 2018 12:22 am 



Joined: 26 Jan 2005
Posts: 1346
Location: Vienna, VA
The Raiden Fighters games have a vertical refresh rate that most LCDs aren't going to handle (54hz). If your'e connecting directly to an LCD panel, even through svideo or composite that is why you aren't getting video. It's not an issue with the supergun, it's the display. The only way that game is going to work on a random Dell LCD panel is if you use a scaler that also does frame rate conversion.



shmupsrocks wrote:
What connection type are you using for RGB to those TVs? I need to buy a small 9" composite CRT just for testing.

Care to give any of those a try with composite (or S-video) to see if there's an incompatibility with the encoder in the Sigma?

EDIT: FWIW it's not Raiden Fighters 2 I'm having trouble with it's Raiden Fighters 1.
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 Post subject: Re: Japanese superguns
PostPosted: Thu Nov 15, 2018 2:00 pm 



Joined: 13 Aug 2018
Posts: 128
I received an XRGB mini so I was able to test the problematic boards and Strikers 1, Raiden 2, and Raiden Fighters 1 all work fine via RGB even though they don't work properly via composite or S-video out of the Sigma AV7000 or Hakuryu. Unfortunately I still have the vertical lines through some sprites in UN Squadron.


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