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Written By: James Dunford
|What is the best way to view a PSX
The easy answer to the above question is to use your eyes. However once you tire of that gag (like I did the minute I wrote it), then you can get to the serious options.
This is the one subject that seems to garner the greatest number of queries regarding Next Generation consoles. The answer is pretty simple too, but with the wealth of options it is easy to get confused. Recently I have seen worried postings from people concerned that they will need a special monitor to be able to use these 'Next Gen.' machines, but rest assured Sony or Sega et al would not release a mass market product that couldn't be used with a regular tv.
Here is the run down of connections from your machine to your tv, going from worst to best:
The RF lead:
The cheapest, most common and certainly the worst, this was the lead you traditionally got with games consoles. It carries a modulated tv signal combined with mono audio. (In the UK Sony are bundling this cable with the PS. I can only assume this is a nervous reaction after Sega sold out of RF cables on day of release, because they had shipped with the Saturn with a far superior RGB SCART cable. Top marks to Sega for that brave choice, bottom marks for charging UKS 20 ($30)) My opinion is this if you are spending $300 - $400 on a machine, why would you want to cripple the picture you get from it?
Composite audio video cable:
This three lead cable has one for video and two left and right audio leads for stereo sound. (This is what is getting bundled in America with the PS.)
Now we are getting somewhere, this is the first of the two high-end and most suitable options. It is a combined cable with 6 pins carrying a chrominance and luminance signal and the usual two stereo audio outputs.
The second high-end option is the best, it has three separate lines for the video, each one carrying the colour signal for each of the tvs 'guns'. (Red, Green and Blue). The essential thing about RGB is that the video signal is split into it's constitutent parts, so any cable that does that job can be called an RGB cable. In Europe the standard connection is called SCART (also Euroconnector and Peritel), which carries stereo audio, RGB video and composite video. Hopefuly a cable specialist will make an RGB cable that could be used with a common games computer monitor like the Commodore 1084S or the Philips CM8833 (so could get the authentic arcade experience by playing Raiden in arcade mode with the monitor on it's side with a crystal clear picture!! Dreamy stuff)
Please note that the views expressed in this review are those of the writer and not of A.P.I