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   /  Classic Amiga Hardware
      /  A noob got real - advice needed!
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AmiKit 
A noob got real - advice needed!
Posted on 19-Oct-2019 11:11:47
#1 ]
Super Member
Joined: 18-Jul-2004
Posts: 1117
From: Europe

A miracle happened at Amiga34 event in Germany. After more than 15 years of me not having any "real" hardware, Simon Neumann from Alinea Computer gave me an Amiga 1200 which he had just won in a raffle. Amazing, isn't it? Thanks again, Simon, and thanks to Markus Tillmann too, the Amiga34 organiser, who actually donated the A1200 to the raffle!

Btw. if you want to know what else happened to me at Amiga34, check this Facebook post of mine. It's quite unbelievable and funny too

So I am getting a basic A1200 soon, but since I've forgotten everything regarding "real" hardware, and I haven't followed any hardware news either, could you please help me to get started?
I would like to use it for games, mainly. Probably with some must-have expansions or add-ons - providing they all fit into the original non-tower A1200 case.



1. What is the most elegant solution to connect A1200 to a modern LCD monitor?

One of my monitors has DVI-D and VGA/D-SUB inputs. The other one (preferred) has HDMI, DisplayPort and USB-C inputs. Back in the times I used 1084 monitor with Amiga, but for these new monitors I need something like flickerfixer or scandoubler, right?

The Indivision AGA MK2 for A1200 seems to be sold out. The ScanPlus AGA might be still available but it connects to VGA monitors only? Or can I use some VGA to HDMI adapter with it?

Does the Indivision or ScanPlus fit into the regular non-tower A1200 case or it has to be placed aside?

Or maybe I can use the following alternative instead? Amiga to SCART cable combined with SCART to HDMI convertor? Again, I'd like to play games, mainly.



2. I'd like to boot games from USB instead of regular floppy disks.

Is Gotek the best option out there? And can it fit into the A1200 case completely by replacing the original floppy drive?



3. Some extras would be nice too - providing they all fit into the original non-tower A1200 case. What would you recommend?

- SD HardDrive seems cool so I can boot Workbench anytime. It fits into the case, right?

- Maybe ACA 1221EC 25MHZ accelerator? I am not sure about its benefit, especially if I want to play games only? Maybe just some FastRAM expansion would be enough?

- Arcade Evolution joystick and/or Captain Grand-Marathon joystick.

- anything else?


THANK YOU!

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OldAmigan 
Re: A noob got real - advice needed!
Posted on 19-Oct-2019 15:58:19
#2 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 25-Dec-2003
Posts: 606
From: Dumfries, Scotland

@AmiKit

1. Amiga to SCART works well with TV's. It bypasses the tuner so on old CRT TV's it displayed directly into the screen circuitry and is nice and crisp.

However, the Amiga output is analogue and HDMI is digital (it's the same spec as DVI-D)

I have successfully used a 23-pin to 9-pin converter and VGA cables without flicker fixer. It's a while back but I think I used DblPAL. If I remember rightly it was limited to 640 x 480 but I suppose for games only that might be OK. For everything else, there's not enough screen.

I've never had a flicker fixer so no idea with that.

2. Gotek does fit instead of a floppy. You can get a 3D printed bracket and you can also buy a remote screen which you can fit on top of the Amiga as the existing one is a little difficult to see.

3. SD Hard Drive - SSD - you can buy an adaptor for the IDE (even one on a ribbon cable which enables you to fit it so you can exchange cards) and you can buy the SSD with the OS of choice (3.1 or 3.1.4 anyway) already installed.

There are quite a few peripherals available through most of the resellers.

Has the A1200 been recapped? If it hasn't it may very well be worthwhile getting it done/ doing it yourself. The caps are available as complete sets.

Best of luck with it Jan.

Fred

PS - an accelerator allows it to run souped up OS's better, like....oh yeah, Amikit!

Last edited by OldAmigan on 19-Oct-2019 at 03:59 PM.

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========================================
A500, A600, A1200 c/w Mediator and 030
AmigaOne and OS4.1
Mac LCII, G4 Powermac running OSX + Amigakit and MorphOS 3.0
Dell Mini 10 Netbook running IcAros and AmigaForever+Amikit+AmigaSys
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OldAmigan 
Re: A noob got real - advice needed!
Posted on 19-Oct-2019 19:28:32
#3 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 25-Dec-2003
Posts: 606
From: Dumfries, Scotland

@Amikit

My bad! I've just been looking through some Amiga stuff and found a SCART to HDMI Scaler/Converter. It does either 720p or 1080p (switchable).

I've never got around to using it yet but bought it off ebay.

Fred

_________________
Fred Booth
========================================
A500, A600, A1200 c/w Mediator and 030
AmigaOne and OS4.1
Mac LCII, G4 Powermac running OSX + Amigakit and MorphOS 3.0
Dell Mini 10 Netbook running IcAros and AmigaForever+Amikit+AmigaSys
2006 Macb

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g01df1sh 
Re: A noob got real - advice needed!
Posted on 19-Oct-2019 19:40:13
#4 ]
Super Member
Joined: 16-Apr-2009
Posts: 1667
From: UK

@OldAmigan

WHDLoad is a great way to experience the old classics. I would go with a cheap LCD tv and use scart. For what you pay for a converter you can most likely get a TV. I use a Samsung 933hd and it even does hires laced with very little flicker but you really need 060 for hires screen modes. I also have a indivision which is ok but the software is not very user friendly.

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klx300r 
Re: A noob got real - advice needed!
Posted on 19-Oct-2019 20:43:03
#5 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 4-Mar-2008
Posts: 3514
From: Toronto, Canada

@AmiKit

congrats on getting your 1200 Jan! my advice is:

1- get yourself an 030@50 accelerator so you can run 95%of all classic and new games coming out and majority of demos
2- buy SSD or DOM card as HD
2- change all caps asap if they were never changed
3- if you can't find a 1080 or RGB monitor get yourself a scan doubler/flicker fixer
4- get an PCMCIA CF card transfer kit like this: http://amigakit.amiga.store/product_info.php?products_id=440
5- smile with the rest of us amigans worldwide

Last edited by klx300r on 19-Oct-2019 at 08:43 PM.

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c64-2sids, A1000, A1200T-060@50(finally working!),A4000-CSMKIII
! My Master Miggies- Amiga 1000 & AmigaOne X1000 !
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AmiKit 
Re: A noob got real - advice needed!
Posted on 20-Oct-2019 8:26:33
#6 ]
Super Member
Joined: 18-Jul-2004
Posts: 1117
From: Europe

1. Regarding A1200 and LCD monitor - still need help

@OldAmigan Quote:
I've just been looking through some Amiga stuff and found a SCART to HDMI Scaler/Converter. It does either 720p or 1080p (switchable).

Thanks Fred! So do you think I don't need to buy Indivision or ScanPlus at all and just use Scart converter > HDMI cable to connect my A1200 to LCD? This is the very first step. If I don't plug the A1200 to at least one of my existing monitor, the rest doesn't matter, you know.

@g01df1sh Quote:
For what you pay for a converter you can most likely get a TV.

Nope. It's 9 dollars thing. Just click the link in my initial post.

klx300r Quote:
if you can't find a 1080 or RGB monitor get yourself a scan doubler/flicker fixer

I already have 2 LCDs. An Amiga monitor is not an option. My wife would notice it ;)



2. So I'll get the Gotek. Seems like very convenient solution. I don't even know where I would buy floppy disks these days :)



3. Regarding the hard drive

I did not mean SSD. I mean exactly this INTERNAL 44-PIN SD CARD IDE ADAPTER A1200 with 4GB SD card. That is all I need to have a working "hard drive", right?

Regarding the accelerator
@OldAmigan Quote:
an accelerator allows it to run souped up OS's better, like....oh yeah, Amikit!

klx300r Quote:
get yourself an 030@50 accelerator so you can run 95%of all classic and new games coming out and majority of demos

Ou yeah, I had Blizzard 1240/40 with 32GB RAM back in the times. But this time I want to play games on A1200 only, so I guess plain A1200 is enough and most compatible solution. For fast Workbench (and maybe AmiKit too) I bought Vampire V4 ;)

Misc
@OldAmigan Quote:
Has the A1200 been recapped? If it hasn't it may very well be worthwhile getting it done/ doing it yourself.

Uh oh, I googled it and now I know what you mean. I will check that for sure. Thanks!

klx300r Quote:
get an PCMCIA CF card transfer kit like this: http://amigakit.amiga.store/product_info.php?products_id=440

Thanks!

klx300r Quote:
smile with the rest of us amigans worldwide

Last edited by AmiKit on 20-Oct-2019 at 08:27 AM.

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g0blin 
Re: A noob got real - advice needed!
Posted on 21-Oct-2019 11:04:59
#7 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 31-Mar-2009
Posts: 642
From: Unknown

@AmiKit

You see, Jan? Good things do happen to good persons!
Cheers
Gianluca

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Cool_amigaN 
Re: A noob got real - advice needed!
Posted on 1-Nov-2019 14:35:07
#8 ]
Super Member
Joined: 6-Oct-2006
Posts: 1189
From: Athens/Greece

@AmiKit

Yo! It was nice meeting you in A34, once you 'll be in Thessaloniki again, drop a PM, perhaps I 'll be might be there as well ;)

Ref to A1200 and LCD monitor: I am on the same boat since I want to restore my A1200 into being fully functional. So I investigated all aspects:

- Still have my original 1084s but in general I discarded classic CRTs due to high radiation and in need of recap among others.
- MK2cr was rejected because even though it's the only solution that produces true digital signal through DVI (and has the best screen quality) one must find a compatible monitor that does smooth 50Hz. If not, forcing you to usual 60Hz will result to tearing experience thus losing the smooth scrolling of most Amiga games. Also, messing with timings of a particular monitor and locking them for good WB experience doesn't equal that these timings will be smooth when loading a game. Perhaps a 100Hz monitor might be a better solution but 4:3 or 5:4 ratio screens with 100Hz might be extremely difficult to find.
- OSSC is an external alternative where you can connect a RGB-Scart cable (or RGB-VGA, but it's better to use scart, since it has better filters on it). Again you must play with the timings but it is considered a worldwide solution (not Amiga specific) with acceptable image (output in hdmi or dvi). However it's a converter (analog - digital) suffering whatever loss of the signal might happen in the process (and it's external, which I didn't like :P).
- RGB-SCART is the easiest and safest solution for basic results since the connection will result to a specific percentage of blurriness compared to MK2cr and OSSC. You must find a compatible TV-Monitor with scart input. Prefer an IPS model since color will look much better.Most TV-Monitors accept changing ratio to 4:3 or 5:4 even if it's widescreen.
- RGB-VGA cable w. compatible 50Hz monitor, this is the solution I ended up with. Source a BenQ bl702a, BL912 or NEC 1970VX (even better) along with a quality cable from AmiBay. Scrolling is smooth due to h/v sync compatibility and the only compromise on the bl702a (most popular) are some side blank stripes (around 2cm). To get rid of the them, buy a c-sync cable (though monitor has to be re-adjusted each time, otherwise use the h/v compatibility and live the blank stripes). There are also some bendings on dblPAL but this can be minimized by messing with the phase on the menu.

So, to sum up, there is no perfect or universally acceptable solution. There is some compromise here and there and a certain cost for each one. Perhaps the best available option is to combine the Mk2cr with BL912 and a high quality DVI cable but buying the set might exceed 300 euros from my research, whereas bl702a plus a good RGB - VGA cable sums around 140eur. (and the monitor I sourced is brand new).

Last edited by Cool_amigaN on 01-Nov-2019 at 02:35 PM.

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AmiKit 
Re: A noob got real - advice needed!
Posted on 1-Nov-2019 18:52:42
#9 ]
Super Member
Joined: 18-Jul-2004
Posts: 1117
From: Europe

@g0blin

Quote:
You see, Jan? Good things do happen to good persons!

Thank you for your kind words, Gianluca!


@Cool_amigaN

Thank you for your comprehensive post, Stefanos! In the end I've ordered new BenQ BL702a as I read only positive reviews from Amiga people. I've also bought RGB-VGA adapter, so let's see how it works. I was also considering OSSC, but BenQ was cheaper... even though it will take more space on table

Since I want to use the A1200 mainly for games, I've ordered A1200SDE+ card from from Amiga On The Lake. It seems like a nice add-on with extra features. And I think I grabbed the last one they had!

Other than that I've ordered internal Gotek floppy emulator, CF hard disk, Amiga mouse and joystick and capacitor pack for recapping. Seems the Christmas came earlier this year!

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g0blin 
Re: A noob got real - advice needed!
Posted on 2-Nov-2019 16:51:36
#10 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 31-Mar-2009
Posts: 642
From: Unknown

@AmiKit

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