The Hunt for the CRT – Part Two

The Amiga 1438S monitor (taken from http://www.webwood.de/ad31.html)
The Amiga 1438 monitor. Used to own one of these! (taken from http://www.webwood.de/ad31.html)

My hunt for a Commodore 1084S or a similar monitor has been fruitless so far. These screens are certainly hard to come by. I’ve seen one for sale in my country, but it was pick-up only. I got a good tip about e-Bay and the availability of screens from Germany, but the postage is steep and the monitors are not cheap themselves. This led to me to ponder the situation..

What if I got a standard CRT VGA monitor instead?

It’s not exactly what I had in my mind, but combined with one of those wonderful Indivision boards from Individual Computers, the graphics will look just like I want them to.

Both Vesalia and AmigaKit has the Indivision ECS for sale. Both companies charge about 99 EUR for one unit. Not a bad price in my opinion.

The Indivision ECS (photo from http://www.vesalia.de/e_indivisionecs.htm)
The Indivision ECS (photo from http://www.vesalia.de/e_indivisionecs.htm)

If you’re not familiar with the Indivision ECS, here’s a quick run-down. It’s basically a scandoubler and flicker fixer that can be used in a wide range of Amiga computers. Examples are the Amiga 500, 600 and 1500. With this card, you can hook your machine up to all kinds of VGA monitors.

AmigaKit has listed the features of the card on the product page on their website:

Features
Internal fitting plugs into Denise chip socket (Denise chip not included)
8-bit, 15 bit, 16 bit chunky pixel modes (15 bit & 16 bits are converted) to 12 bits
Resolution from 320×200 to 1024×768
Video memory can be directly described by DMA chipset (up to 7.15 MB/s)
All OCS/ECS screenmodes displayed and scan-converted, output is always over 60Hz and flicker-free
Fallback to legacy flickerfixer-type 49.9Hz modes at the user’s choice
Dual monitor support when two Indivision ECS are connected together in one Amiga!
Optional scanline emulation for retro-feeling
Video Toaster compatible
Re-configurable / re-flashable design, new screenmodes can be added with a software upgrade
No fiddling with adjustments, just plug in and use
Low power consumption, no heat problems (3.3V design, 1.5V core voltage)
Highgfx support ( larger screenmodes ). Example screen-grabs: Highgfx 1

Not bad, eh? πŸ™‚

This card should be excellent for the Amiga 500 that I’m bringing back from the shadows (although at a bit slower pace than planned..). πŸ˜‰

I’ve already got the Indivision AGA installed in my Amiga 1200. This computer is connected to an LCD-screen. I’m satisfied with the quality of the picture, but I want more.. I want it like it was on my old Amiga monitor (except for the eye-hurting flickering in higher resolutions)! πŸ˜‰ A VGA CRT monitor will go a long way making this dream come true.

Obtaining a standard VGA CRT monitor shouldn’t be a problem. Seems like a lot of people want to get rid of these monitors. I’ll ask around. Maybe someone has one for me? πŸ™‚

Let the CRT-hunting commence!

 

 

4 comments

  1. It is always about luck. Finding someone near you that has a monitor for sale. Holland is not that big of a country so in 3 1/2 hours I can get anywhere so I would not mind driving that long to pick something up.

    • Hi Coder! Guess what! Picked up an old CRT TV on Sunday! It’s an old Goldstar 14″. Tested it out with my Amiga 1200 and it worked great. πŸ™‚ Part three of The Hunt for the CRT will be published soon, with pictures of course. πŸ˜‰

  2. Great to hear that you’ve got your hands on a CRT monitor too, Puni! That’s absolutely the best choice for retro gaming. I have a lot of these monitors laying around so if you need another one later – maybe I can help you out.. Standard CRT VGA monitors are still easy to find – at least here in Norway. If I were you, I think I would go for an Indivision ECS card instead of buying an original Amiga monitor from abroad. As you say; the postage is steep and these monitors are also quite old now. You never know how long they’ll last before the CRT Tube explodes in a cloud of black smoke… πŸ˜‰

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