Dreamcast VGA Adapter

Posted by snake911 (164 posts) -

I recently got myself a Dreamcast and I love it!  However, I noticed how horrible it looked when it was plugged into an HDTV via composite cables (the yellow, red, and white cables).  The colors of the video looked very washed out and the sharpness was very cruddy.  It was so bad that I even considered not playing it on an HDTV because it looked so terrible!  I needed a solution, so I checked the web to see what was out there.

VGA input on my HDTV

Luckily, Sega was on top of it when they designed the Dreamcast because they also made the system compatible with VGA (way ahead of its time when considering that the Dreamcast came out in the US in 1999).  This was great news for me because my HDTV has a VGA input.  I found a store on EBay called fourtriangles and they sold their version of the VGA cable for a little over $13.00.  After testing it out, I’m happy to say that it works…beautifully!  WOW!  You can see every marvelous pixel on the screen!  The sharpness is fantastic and the colors are vivid and pop out right at ya!


VGA adapter from fourtriangles











There is, however, a negative side to outputting your video via VGA.  Not all games are compatible with VGA output.  The upside to this is that only a small amount of games are branded as not compatible.  Check out a compatibility list by clicking here.

I took some screenshots comparing the video output between the composite and VGA cables.  The pictures were taken with my digital camera and not with some type of throughput capture device.  Yes, this means I took pictures of the display from the HDTV.  Even though I took the comparison images this way, you can still see a significant difference of output quality between the two types of cables.  View the full gallery of comparison images by clicking here (check out the original sizes to see the true details).

Test 1 with composite
Test 1 with VGA









Original Size of image for test 1 with composite

Original Size of image for test 1 with VGA



Test 3 with composite
Test 3 with VGA









Original Size of image for test 3 with composite

Original Size of image for test 3 with VGA


Later!

#1 Posted by snake911 (164 posts) -

I recently got myself a Dreamcast and I love it!  However, I noticed how horrible it looked when it was plugged into an HDTV via composite cables (the yellow, red, and white cables).  The colors of the video looked very washed out and the sharpness was very cruddy.  It was so bad that I even considered not playing it on an HDTV because it looked so terrible!  I needed a solution, so I checked the web to see what was out there.

VGA input on my HDTV

Luckily, Sega was on top of it when they designed the Dreamcast because they also made the system compatible with VGA (way ahead of its time when considering that the Dreamcast came out in the US in 1999).  This was great news for me because my HDTV has a VGA input.  I found a store on EBay called fourtriangles and they sold their version of the VGA cable for a little over $13.00.  After testing it out, I’m happy to say that it works…beautifully!  WOW!  You can see every marvelous pixel on the screen!  The sharpness is fantastic and the colors are vivid and pop out right at ya!


VGA adapter from fourtriangles











There is, however, a negative side to outputting your video via VGA.  Not all games are compatible with VGA output.  The upside to this is that only a small amount of games are branded as not compatible.  Check out a compatibility list by clicking here.

I took some screenshots comparing the video output between the composite and VGA cables.  The pictures were taken with my digital camera and not with some type of throughput capture device.  Yes, this means I took pictures of the display from the HDTV.  Even though I took the comparison images this way, you can still see a significant difference of output quality between the two types of cables.  View the full gallery of comparison images by clicking here (check out the original sizes to see the true details).

Test 1 with composite
Test 1 with VGA









Original Size of image for test 1 with composite

Original Size of image for test 1 with VGA



Test 3 with composite
Test 3 with VGA









Original Size of image for test 3 with composite

Original Size of image for test 3 with VGA


Later!

#2 Posted by raven_squad (438 posts) -

Neat. I'll have to try to get my hands on one of the VGA adapters. Ever since I bought my HDTV ive just been settling for the shoddy video quality when I want to revisit some of my Dreamcast favorites. 

#3 Posted by LiquidPrince (16158 posts) -

Ahh, Dreamcast...

#4 Posted by Emilio (3380 posts) -

Man... I wish my TV had VGA. I just have to do with S-Video for now. :(

#5 Edited by Linkyshinks (9880 posts) -

I have one and use it all the time. My VGA adapter has the other inputs also including a stereo speaker output, so if you are playing a game that happens not to be compatible, which is rare, you can still play it. Most of the Japanese games I own are VGA compatible.

Vista Gaming VGA Adapter




























Here is a pic of Project Justice Rival Schools 2 on my monitor, the clarity is awesome-

caption


























#6 Posted by Lemegeton (780 posts) -

i remember when i had my dreamcast and i wanted to play it on my monitor i went looking for a vga adapter. i went into one store and asked about them and the woman looked at me as if i had just asked her for the location of the Holy Grail.
didn't have a notion what i was talking about, lol.

it was a great peripheral and defo ahead of its time, much like the system was

#7 Posted by Linkyshinks (9880 posts) -

OK, so that link does not work, the compatibility list link. I have looked on the net and cannot find one. GB should definitely have that on site. The old Racketboy link is dead, which I am guessing is what the OP used.  If anyone can obtain the list could you please add it to the Dreamcast page.

#8 Posted by Emilio (3380 posts) -
Linkyshinks said:
"OK, so that link does not work, the compatibility list link. I have looked on the net and cannot find one. GB should definitely have that on site. The old Racketboy link is dead, which I am guessing is what the OP used.  If anyone can obtain the list could you please add it to the Dreamcast page."
The link works. I'm on it right now.
#9 Edited by Linkyshinks (9880 posts) -

Where does it take you, what site?, because I am not moving off this page.

EDIT:

Thanks :)

#10 Posted by oldschool (7264 posts) -

It took me to racketboy.com with the list of games.

#11 Posted by Emilio (3380 posts) -
Linkyshinks said:
"Where does it take you, what site?, because I am not moving off this page."
Well the link takes me to the list of games. PM'ed anywayz.
#12 Posted by oldschool (7264 posts) -

It took me to       www.racketboy.com/retro/2006/05/dreamcast-vga-cable-compatibility-list.html 

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