Hooking up multiple retro consoles to an old TV at once

Everything from Apple to Zerglings

Moderators: Faalstar, Kefka

Post Reply
User avatar
manaman
Spikey Tiger
Posts: 1649
Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2007 4:06 pm
Contact:

Hooking up multiple retro consoles to an old TV at once

Post by manaman » Mon Oct 31, 2011 5:37 pm

Hi all,

Honestly, I'm just interested in you all sharing your setups of game consoles--especially retro ones. The rest of this post is just a story you can take or leave.

A lot has happened since I've last been really active here. My wife and I are living in our first home--one that we bought. It's very exciting and comes with a lot of neat, "Whoa! I'm an adult!" moments. One such moment is when I realized I could hook up all my video game systems and get them set up just the way I wanted them.

One thing I really insisted on was the ability to have every console I've got plugged in and ready to go at any time. I'm not quite done with the setup but in the end, I'm going to have 9 systems all set to go (this number includes a Wii that is upstairs with a home theater PC and a flat-panel TV). Another thing that was important was that I have all my retro consoles (everything that was pre-current generation (ie, my Wii) hooked up to a smaller, CRT TV. Also, I'm done with daisy-chaining all my RF switches together so that the last in line is picking up radio stations and getting groovy distortion waves coming in! No, I want the best picture I can get while maintaining blurry, CRT nostalgia.

Well, what I did is order some equipment. It's on its way. If you're interested (or maybe even if you're not) I'll share what happens. Either way, I really want to know what you all may have done to hook up your game consoles and what considerations you had when doing so.

Peace,

manaman

User avatar
Dr. Sheexy
Site Admin
Posts: 3864
Joined: Sun May 21, 2006 8:49 am
Location: Texas
Contact:

Re: Hooking up multiple retro consoles to an old TV at once

Post by Dr. Sheexy » Tue Nov 01, 2011 3:33 am

manaman wrote:One such moment is when I realized I could hook up all my video game systems and get them set up just the way I wanted them.
Haha, awesome. :P

I only have NES and SNES as far as old systems go, and yeah I just daisy chain those two together. I get enough distortion from just chaining together two... I'd love to see how bad the ninth one looks on your TV. XD
Smart move giving them an old TV with them, the way they're meant to be played. :-)

What all systems did you hook up?

User avatar
Kefka
Whimper
Posts: 1002
Joined: Sun May 28, 2006 6:01 pm
Location: The Netherlands
Contact:

Re: Hooking up multiple retro consoles to an old TV at once

Post by Kefka » Tue Nov 01, 2011 9:42 am

Although we (my fiancee and me) have said that we get a flatscreen soon - for 5 years now- , we are still watching TV on an old CRT television.
hooked up?
- Wii
- NES

my little brother (well.. little? he's 25) has the Playstation One and the SNES hooked up.

EDIT: will make a picture soon. the NES has got a story when i describe it.

User avatar
DeadWolf
Spikey Tiger
Posts: 1456
Joined: Tue Jan 30, 2007 3:09 pm
Location: Deceased

Re: Hooking up multiple retro consoles to an old TV at once

Post by DeadWolf » Tue Nov 01, 2011 1:45 pm

All my new stuff uses HDMI except the Wii. For all the old system that still use composite I have a little switch box that all of the systems go to and then that goes to the 32 inch flat panel TV. Sound goes from the TV to the Stereo (while not 5.1 I'm not complaining about the sound from 330 watts).

User avatar
manaman
Spikey Tiger
Posts: 1649
Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2007 4:06 pm
Contact:

Re: Hooking up multiple retro consoles to an old TV at once

Post by manaman » Tue Nov 01, 2011 4:30 pm

Sheexy wrote:I'd love to see how bad the ninth one looks on your TV. XD
You know, I think for fun I'll hook everything up the old way and record for you a video. Remind me to do this. And I really should use Secret of Mana as the test game since you'll all be familiar with it. :D
Sheexy wrote:Smart move giving them an old TV with them, the way they're meant to be played. :-)
Kyatto wrote:Although we (my fiancee and me) have said that we get a flatscreen soon - for 5 years now- , we are still watching TV on an old CRT television.
Honestly, I think there is a certain charm to older TV's even for television. I often get disoriented when watching anything on newer screens because it looks so real that it looks fake--does that make sense? Thankfully, our upstairs (living room) TV is a little smaller flat screen and it has some good settings that makes a clear picture but one that isn't too good if you know what I mean. The biggest advantage to the TV is widescreen support for the Wii and movies. As for all my classic systems, it's CRT all the way.
Kyatto wrote:will make a picture soon. the NES has got a story when i describe it.
Please do! Can't wait to see! I'll post pictures of my setup once everything is done. I got most of the stuff in the mail today but am waiting on a few key pieces.
Sheexy wrote:What all systems did you hook up?
Well, let's see, I'm setting them up by age (of model in case of revisions):
  • Odyssey 2000
    Atari 2600
    Nintendo Entertainment System
    Sega Genesis
    Super Nintendo Entertainment System
    Nintendo 64
    PlayStation (PSone)
    PlayStation 2
Upstairs, in our living room, is our main TV and hooked up to that is a HTPC and the Wii. The Wii is upstairs because it looks best on a modern TV and because it gets used the most. I'm not interested in starting any kind of debate, but for my money, the Wii has the largest collection of games that interest me. I think it has an awesome library and many of its games are under $20 new. I love the retro-style games released on it and features like Netflix are used a lot in our house as well. I think I'll be expanding my Wii library well into the next generation.

User avatar
Kefka
Whimper
Posts: 1002
Joined: Sun May 28, 2006 6:01 pm
Location: The Netherlands
Contact:

Re: Hooking up multiple retro consoles to an old TV at once

Post by Kefka » Wed Nov 02, 2011 1:10 am

manaman wrote: ....because it looks so real that it looks fake--does that make sense?
Yes i does! Finally i'm not the only one. I've got the same when watching telly at my parents who have a 42"inch Philips 200hz ambilight bla bla Flatscreen.
manaman wrote: Please do! Can't wait to see!
Will do!

User avatar
Dr. Sheexy
Site Admin
Posts: 3864
Joined: Sun May 21, 2006 8:49 am
Location: Texas
Contact:

Re: Hooking up multiple retro consoles to an old TV at once

Post by Dr. Sheexy » Wed Nov 02, 2011 3:49 am

manaman wrote:
Sheexy wrote:I often get disoriented when watching anything on newer screens because it looks so real that it looks fake--does that make sense?
A lot of times this is due to the newer TVs having refresh rates at like 120 hrtz sometimes, and that's way faster than the shows or movies were filmed for. Anything on film is like 24 FPS, so the 120hrtz makes each frame stick around longer than it's supposed to if that makes sense. Gives everything a soap opera look, because soap operas are recorded with that kind of FPS anyway since they're not on film.

If you can change the refresh rate you can maybe fix that problem.

Also it's sad to use any games that use pixel art on those screens, cause CRT monitors tend to blur stuff and people actually took that into account when making games, the best example I can think of is from Sonic. Of course I can't find an example image now, but anyway. The waterfalls in the game are actually checkerboards of opaque sprites, instead of being big transparent sections. This is because they couldn't use transparency or something, but anyway, on CRT monitors the checkerboard of pixels blurs together and looks like a transparent section, but when you do it on LCD there is no blur effect so it looks wrong.

User avatar
manaman
Spikey Tiger
Posts: 1649
Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2007 4:06 pm
Contact:

Re: Hooking up multiple retro consoles to an old TV at once

Post by manaman » Wed Nov 02, 2011 12:44 pm

You know, that's really interesting, Sheexy. I had no idea it had anything to do with refresh rate. I only thought it was due to the different decnologies illuminating the screen.

What I don't understand is why people purchase expensive televisions that have this issue. It ruins movies for me because it makes every microscopic shake of the camera stand out and causes even the best movies to look like they were filmed by armatures.

User avatar
Kefka
Whimper
Posts: 1002
Joined: Sun May 28, 2006 6:01 pm
Location: The Netherlands
Contact:

Re: Hooking up multiple retro consoles to an old TV at once

Post by Kefka » Wed Nov 02, 2011 9:22 pm

sry for the small pics, but the scrolling was unbearable when i posted larger pics.
Attachments
1IMG_0345.jpg
complete setup. Notice the Wii Balance Board covered in dust.
1IMG_0345.jpg (66.96 KiB) Viewed 12717 times
1IMG_0346.jpg
the NES with zapper, four controllers and a big controller (used by the NES support in the days back then). My parents seem to have another box with more games somewhere on their attic.
1IMG_0346.jpg (77.19 KiB) Viewed 12717 times
1IMG_0347.jpg
the NES has a switch so it can play both PAL and NTSC games.
1IMG_0347.jpg (42.6 KiB) Viewed 12717 times

nick912012
Pebbler
Posts: 236
Joined: Tue Nov 07, 2006 4:23 am
Location: Lebanon, Illinois
Contact:

Re: Hooking up multiple retro consoles to an old TV at once

Post by nick912012 » Thu Nov 03, 2011 1:26 am

Oh man, I just bought a 36" flat screen for $200, but there were no RF ports, the ones where you gotta screw in the cable. I don't have AV cables for my SNES either, so I had to hook it up through my VCR and use that. The next problem was that the TV didn't have speakers, but it did have the ability to plug in speakers to it, so I now have computer speakers hooked up to my flat screen with a SNES hooked up to a VCR.

I haven't been able to play it yet, but during Thanksgiving break, I'll be giving that some action.

User avatar
manaman
Spikey Tiger
Posts: 1649
Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2007 4:06 pm
Contact:

Re: Hooking up multiple retro consoles to an old TV at once

Post by manaman » Thu Nov 03, 2011 2:46 pm

Kyatto, I am insanely jealous. I love the woods and colors of your room. And I like the mod to you NES. That is pretty spiffy. Did you do it yourself or did someone else install it? Also, the NES Advantage is a rockin' controller! I use one myself.

Nick, there is a box you can get to connect an RF port to newer televisions. I'm not sure it's worth it and it may not be important to you but it would cut down on clutter if you don't use your VCR.

Well everyone, I'm still waiting to get my packages in the mail. You have given me some more ideas, though. Beyond organizing my systems, I am looking into ways to organize my controllers, games and handhelds as well.

Anyway, I'll be hopefully posting the results of the consoles soon.

Post Reply