LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

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paulv
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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby paulv » Sat Jun 22, 2013 9:32 am

What are the full specs of the monitor? 1280x1024@60Hz is the maximum resolution it can handle but the Arc only is pushing out 640x480 at 57.6Hz (or 60Hz if you have a 25.175MHz clock installed) or 800x600 (MODE 31) @ 56.2Hz with a 36MHz clock installed.

Some monitors are really fussy about what refresh rates they accept so knowing what you screen can accept and what the Arc is pushing out is really important.

Paul
Last edited by paulv on Sat Jun 22, 2013 9:56 am, edited 1 time in total.

steve3000
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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby steve3000 » Sat Jun 22, 2013 9:38 am

Looking at your pictures, you have Risc OS configured as VGA. You should really change this to SVGA, as your LCD screen is SVGA... Although practically it won't make much difference unless you have a VIDC enhancer fitted :) Remember, you will also need to reset the computer after making any changes using !Configure, before the changes become effective.

When you have LDCGameModes loaded, press f12 and type *LCDGameModes, it should confirm whether the module is switched on or off. Also type *Help LCGGameModes. Let me know what version you are running, and whether it is on or off.

Steve

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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby martinw » Sat Jun 22, 2013 9:59 am

It sounds like I need some hardware bits and bobs then to use this monitor ..... :?:

A new crystal maybe? or an enhancer (or something :? :))

Martin

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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby martinw » Sat Jun 22, 2013 10:11 am

Changed to SVGA and here's what I've got.

LCDGameModes Status.jpg
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BTW what's the best way to get out of the F12 window?

Cheers,

Martin

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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby paulv » Sat Jun 22, 2013 10:31 am

martinw wrote:BTW what's the best way to get out of the F12 window?


Just press enter with no command.

Paul

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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby martinw » Sat Jun 22, 2013 10:40 am

paulv wrote:
martinw wrote:BTW what's the best way to get out of the F12 window?


Just press enter with no command.

Paul


Cheers, told you I was a newbie to this :)

Martin

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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby steve3000 » Sat Jun 22, 2013 10:48 am

Ok, all looks well there. After confirming LCDGameModes is enabled (which it looks like it is), enter Mode 9 from the desktop - does it still show a blank screen?

If it does, reset the computer, and enter Mode 9 without loading LCDGameModes. Does this display a thin 'letterbox' screen? (This will confirm whether your monitor actually accepts 70Hz input).

And you don't need any additional hardware to use your computer, but a VIDC enhancer will give higher resolution :)

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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby paulv » Sat Jun 22, 2013 11:12 am

steve3000 wrote:And you don't need any additional hardware to use your computer, but a VIDC enhancer will give higher resolution :)


... and make it produce real, bona-fide VGA refresh rates if you have one with both 25.175MHz and 36MHz clocks on like the ones I've built or the Watford "Super" VIDC Enhancer.

This can be quite important as some monitors don't like going below 60Hz for VGA screen modes whereas others will sync down to 55/56Hz and with an Arc, that makes all the difference.

Paul

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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby steve3000 » Sat Jun 22, 2013 11:18 am

paulv wrote:This can be quite important as some monitors don't like going below 60Hz for VGA screen modes whereas others will sync down to 55/56Hz and with an Arc, that makes all the difference.

Quite right, some monitors can be particularly fussy...

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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby martinw » Wed Jun 26, 2013 6:08 pm

Well, thank you to Steve and Paul =D> I can now see this on my Archimedes monitor, where before it was just a load of wavy lines :D

It looks like I had a fussy monitor after all :idea:

VIDC plus LCDGameMd plus Saloon Cars Deluxe.jpg
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Fitting the VIDC enhancer was really easy after I'd worked out what colour wire was what, as they were different to the instuctions, sneaky Paul [-X

VIDC Enhancer 1.jpg
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BTW I put some electrical tape under the speaker just in case it shorted out on the PCB, not sure if it was necessary but it's always belt and braces for me when it comes to electronics :wink:

I decided to solder two of the wires to the pins of the IC (instead of using the clips provided) as my IDE mini-podule would not have fitted on otherwise.

VIDC Enhancer 2.jpg
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As you can see from the following picture link 24 is north (it was originally south) and link 25 is closed (it was originally open). I couldn't see anything with the enhancer in place until I'd set *CONF. SYNC 0, after which everything sprung into life =D>

VIDC Enhancer 3.jpg
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Powering the PCB was a doddle with the clips provided.

VIDC Enhancer 4.jpg
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And I also didn't have to remove the keyboard I just shuffled it to one side (carefully) and I didn't disconnect the floppy drive, just undid the four screws and flipped it on its back.

Job done :!:

Couple of questions ..... how do I put this (LCDGameMd) in the system somewhere so it runs on boot up and is it possible to move the image around on the screen as I've run out of movement on my monitor and it's still a bit high (not a biggy but would be nice if possible).

Cheers to all involved 8)

Martin

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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby paulv » Wed Jun 26, 2013 8:05 pm

Yay! Glad it's working. Sorry about the confusion with the cable colours, I'll review the manual. I assume it was the Aux cable that was different colours as in my A3000 I switched out a dual VIDC enhancer config and replaced it with the Ultra VIDC enhancer but left the existing wires in place.

As for your question, if you're running Uniboot, drop LCDGameMd and AutoVIDC modules in the predesk folder and they'll both be loaded automatically.

Paul

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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby paulv » Wed Jun 26, 2013 8:20 pm

I forgot to mention, the screen location thing is fixed at the mo. Steve is working on an update which will address this though. He was waiting for me to add in the full clock detection which is in the version of AutoVIDC you're running. Using the added SWI's, the next version of LCDGameMd will be able to figure out what clocks are available in hardware and then fettle the display accordingly.

Currently LCDGameMd always goes for the 24MHz clock. This will be the basic fallback setting when AutoVIDC isn't running or it is running on an Arc without a VIDC enhancer or equivalent circuitry.

Paul

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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby AndyGarton » Wed Jun 26, 2013 9:34 pm

How does one "run Uniboot" please?

(BTW Paul, the cable didn't arrive yet, hopefully not lost.)

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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby paulv » Wed Jun 26, 2013 10:13 pm

AndyGarton wrote:How does one "run Uniboot" please?


Uniboot is basically a group of files that when installed on your HDD replace the boot sequence with one that more resembles later versions of RISC OS and provide a heap of useful extras such as networking capabilities.

If you have a !Boot folder instead of a !Boot file in the root of your HDD then it's likely that you have a variant of Uniboot installed and running already.

AndyGarton wrote:(BTW Paul, the cable didn't arrive yet, hopefully not lost.)


That's odd. I sent it first class. It should have been with you days ago :?

I'll contact you off list about this...

Paul

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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby martinw » Thu Jun 27, 2013 12:43 pm

Slightly confused, what does the AutoVIDC module do (probably in the manual sorry, RTFM) :?:

I haven't run that at all yet ...... :?

Cheers,

Martin

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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby paulv » Thu Jun 27, 2013 1:12 pm

martinw wrote:Slightly confused, what does the AutoVIDC module do (probably in the manual sorry, RTFM) :?:

I haven't run that at all yet ...... :?


AutoVIDC is effectively the driver for the VIDC Enhancer hardware. Without it, you will not be able to achieve MODE 29-31 (MODE 31 being 800x600 @ 16 colours) and the VGA modes you're currently using will be running 4.7% slower (refresh rate wise) than they should be.

Check it out by looking at your refresh rate on your monitors OSD in MODE 27, then run AutoVIDC and double check the refresh rate again. It should read around 57.2Hz and 60.1Hz when it's off and on respectively. :D

For MODE 31 it should read at about 56.2Hz which again is correct for that mode and is the same across all Arc's.

AutoVIDC also provides various SWI services that other modules can take advantage of. For instance, AutoVIDC detects all the VIDC clocks that are available in an Archimedes from the A305 right up to the A5000 and then be queried on what it's found at a later date. This allow modules like Steve's LCDGameMd to choose the best clock rate available on the hardware it's running on.

As you're running RISC OS 3, AutoVIDC can run in a fully automated fashion. Just load it and forget about it :D

If you want to do anything more advanced with your set up like create custom screen modes etc. Take a look at how to do all that in the AutoVIDC manual.

Paul

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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby martinw » Thu Jun 27, 2013 3:29 pm

Thanks for the explanation Paul, i'll definitley have a look at that then :)

Martin

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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby sirbod » Thu Jun 27, 2013 8:49 pm

jms2 wrote:do you have any plans to release a version for the RiscPC?

We are planning on releasing a RiscPC version. Paul, Steve and I have been working on it all year, with ADFFS providing the VIDC1 to VIDC20 translation and LCDGameModes providing the TV to LCD conversion.

It's nowhere near ready for public release, however today is a milestone as we've managed to get a working image for the first time ... the attached photo is of the original release of James Pond, running under ADFFS/LCDGameModes on a RiscPC.
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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby trixster » Mon Jun 22, 2015 3:01 pm

Sorry to pull up an old thread.

LCDGameModes and AutoVIDC work really well on my A3020 when using a 5:4 monitor. Games seem to scale as they would on a crt.

When using my widescreen lcd however, games scale less well and still seem a little flattened. The RiscOS desktop seems to do a good job with coping with the wider screen real estate but games do less well. LCDGameModes does a decent enough job (ie games arent completely letterboxed and stretched from edge to edge) but is there a way to get widescreen monitors working as well as 5:4 ones when it comes to handling ratios?

Thanks,

Andy
A3020 | A3000 | BBC B + 128K RAM/ROM + 20K Shadow + RPi2 CoPro | A420/1
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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby paulv » Mon Jun 22, 2015 3:34 pm

I suspect this is beyond the capabilities of the software as LCDGameModes pretty much assumes a 4:3 screen ratio as that's what the machines natively output on and AutoVIDC doesn't actually care about aspect ratio at all.

For a bit more info as to how it all works....

Essentially Steve's LCDGameModes does all the hard work WRT altering the screen modes to work on the fly. It detects the screen mode on change, knows the monitor type and fettles the screen mode settings and VIDC clock speed in order to achieve the best 4:3 screen mode approximation possible on the actual screen mode/refresh rates combination in use.

RISC OS 3 effectively fettles the 50Hz PAL modes in the first place on a VGA monitor to make them work which turns them into "letterbox" modes.

Image

LCDGameModes, optimises those letterboxed modes in order to achieve something better.

So what does AutoVIDC do?

When AutoVIDC is running on an A3010/A3020/A5000, it's only concern is with presenting a standard way to control the VIDC clock selection that works across every Arc. As not all machines had the same clock control hardware, there was never a standard so AutoVIDC attempts to fill that gap by working out what type of VIDC Enhancer is installed (Aux I/O (Various), I2C (Watford) or Acorn) and then presents one set of SWI's to any software that needs to control the clock rate.

So LCDGameModes might do something like this which would check for a 25.175MHz clock being available and select it if it's there. If it's not there, LCDGameModes would select the 24MHz clock instead.

Code: Select all

MOV R0,#25175 ; Set the clock speed in kHz
SWI AutoVIDC_ClockAvailable ; Is it there?
CMN R0,#1 ; If it isn't there
MOVEQ R0,#0 ; choose the 24Mhz clock (always in slot 0)
SWI AutoVIDC_SetClock ; pass R0 back into AutoVIDC to set the clock.


IIUC, most (if not all) of the trickery that LCDGameModes does actually works using the standard 24MHz clock speed across all the Arcs but in order to select it correctly, AutoVIDC provides that shim.

So getting back to your actual question....

Does your 16:9 monitor have a 4:3 aspect ratio option in the options menu or other form of "stop stretching my 4:3 image to make it 16:9" option somewhere in there? It may be your only option.

Paul
Last edited by paulv on Mon Jun 22, 2015 3:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: LCDGameModes released for RISC OS 3.1 computers!

Postby trixster » Mon Jun 22, 2015 3:42 pm

Thanks for the reply. Sadly no, it's an old LCD monitor I picked up off gumtree for £20 to replace my dead even older 2nd PC display! I can mitigate the stretch somewhat by altering a few monitor settings but it's not quite perfect. Never mind!
A3020 | A3000 | BBC B + 128K RAM/ROM + 20K Shadow + RPi2 CoPro | A420/1
BBC Master Turbo + DC | Atom | A1200 + 80Mhz 060 | A500 | Jaguar
A4000/040 + 66Mhz 060 | Atari Falcon 060 | Saturn | PS1 | SNES | CPC6128 | C64 | 3DO


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