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Still Lynx video - best shots?


Clint Thompson
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So, I'm sure there are ways to make the Lynx display more than just 16 colors at a time. What are some of the best examples you've seen of static images or near photorealistic images produced on the Lynx? Also, does the images compress rather well on the Lynx? Have there been any 2MB or even 512k carts released?

Edited by Clint Thompson
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So, I'm sure there are ways to make the Lynx display more than just 16 colors at a time. What are some of the best examples you've seen of static images or near photorealistic images produced on the Lynx? Also, does the images compress rather well on the Lynx? Have there been any 2MB or even 512k carts released?

 

You can get more colors in a couple of different ways, the same as other platforms:

 

- Use an interrupt timed to the scanline to change the palette, giving you more than 16 colors on the screen, but only 16 unique colors per scanline

- flip between two palettes every "screen", creating the appearance of more colors (and also some flickering.)

 

Alpine Games, I believe, uses the second technique on some screens.

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You can get more colors in a couple of different ways, the same as other platforms:

 

- Use an interrupt timed to the scanline to change the palette, giving you more than 16 colors on the screen, but only 16 unique colors per scanline

- flip between two palettes every "screen", creating the appearance of more colors (and also some flickering.)

 

Alpine Games, I believe, uses the second technique on some screens.

 

Do you know if this will play out ok with the new LCD screen that everyone is installing?

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So, I'm sure there are ways to make the Lynx display more than just 16 colors at a time. What are some of the best examples you've seen of static images or near photorealistic images produced on the Lynx? Also, does the images compress rather well on the Lynx? Have there been any 2MB or even 512k carts released?

There are a few good examples. CGE 5th, Bitchy, and Lynx Invades Japan, all have examples of photo realistic images on the Lynx.

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You can also swtich between 3 displays with only red, green, or blue values to get the maximum of 4096 colors on screen at once. The output is a bit more dark than a regular image.

Sage improved on this by alternating R,G and B per scanline, to diminish the flickering effect.

 

Sage also came up with more variations, using cyan, magenta and yellow to make the display brighter (and slightly washed out IIRC). As well as some cool palette flickering tricks.

 

I coined the idea of 16 colors per scanline here, because I knew that trick was used on the Amiga. Sage then quickly came up with some demos showing it was possible on the Lynx, but I think he couldn't do all of the 16 colors per scanline.

Converting the images to 16 colors per scanline is a bit tricky, because you don't want solid areas of color to slightly change per scanline and you also want vertical gradients to display nicely, while still keeping detail color looking correct.

 

Also most of these high color images use a lot of memory, or performance, making them impractical to use in games.

 

EDIT: Shawn, are you also on the gearslutz forum working on the firmware of the Andromeda synthesizer? That guy uses the same avatar as you.

Edited by Lamer Deluxe tm
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There are a few good examples. CGE 5th, Bitchy, and Lynx Invades Japan, all have examples of photo realistic images on the Lynx.

 

Thanks. I couldn't find any screen shots of CGE 5th neither here on AA, Songbird's site or Google image search. Nothing came up for Lynx Invades Japan either, at least that I'm familiar with, outside of a cart pic.No idea about Bitchy, though I can only imagine lol

Edited by Clint Thompson
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  • 2 weeks later...

A couple of things to note.

On both the modded and unmodded Lynx the Lynx I seems to have a better picture. It isn't apparent as much when just playing games, but when running this little test it was evident, even more than what the camera shows.

 

Both of the modded screens had a lot of flicker just like when playing Alpine games, I find it interesting that the Lynx I pics look pretty good in all the photos, both modded Lynx had just as much flicker and looked a lot more similar in quality than in the picture. Even with timing quirks considered with the photos of the modded Lynx the Lynx one had a slightly noticeable better picture quality.

 

I wonder why the Lynx I seems to produce a better picture both modded and unmodded. Evidently something more than LCD quality is at play or, this is just the skewed results of a small sampling pool. What do you think?

Edited by MrBland
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That is interesting... something seems wonky with the mod or is it just the pictures from this cart and how it converts since it's a different LCD screen? I don't know... but it definitely looks worse with the modded screen haha...

 

*EDIT: With that said, I think this pretty much kills off any ideas of creating any sort of game using photorealistic pictures. Oh well..

Edited by Clint Thompson
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It is because of the method used to produce Highres pictures on the old Lynx Hardware. I am far from a tech guru, but I believe the gist was to refresh the the pixels at a certain rate between two states. You'll notice that in some pics of the modded screen the picture looks to be a negative. So basically you had two sets for an image that the screen refreshed between giving the appearance of a single highres picture. With the modded screen the refresh rate is different and you end up seeing a flicker between both sets for the picture separately, giving a flickering low res image.

 

That is my understanding of it anyway. Someone with a better understanding please feel free to set me straight ;)

Edited by MrBland
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So yes I think a game with photo quality images is possible if you have enough memory. It may be difficult though to make the game compatible across all platforms (modded and unmodded) because the different refresh rates would have to be taken into consideration to make this trick work.

Edited by MrBland
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I finally got around to testing Bitchy out on the modded Lynx and the results were really good. So first look here:

http://atariage.com/forums/topic/203163-mr-blands-handhelds/?p=2925527

There you can see some videos of Bitchy on unmodded hardware and here:

post-33058-0-99708700-1438390110_thumb.jpg

Is a pic of Bitchy on a modded Lynx I.

 

Evidently Rygar didn't use the same trick as was used on Alpine Game and CGE 5th because there is no flicker and I think the image turns out quite nice.

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Just a small experiment with 16 colors. If you first make the image greyscale and posterize it to 16 colors. Then scale it and colorize it you get pretty good results with just 16 colors and Lynx resolution 160x102 (Here I duplicated the pixels to 320x204 to make it a bit larger).

 

post-2099-0-35473100-1438420413_thumb.png

Edited by karri
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Just a small experiment with 16 colors. If you first make the image greyscale and posterize it to 16 colors. Then scale it and colorize it you get pretty good results with just 16 colors and Lynx resolution 160x102 (Here I duplicated the pixels to 320x204 to make it a bit larger).

 

attachicon.gifeatyourheartsout2.png

 

Hey, that picture looks familiar :-D

 

I think bitchy might be using a 16 colors per scanline mode, which should probably work okay with the modded display (haven't tested it myself).

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I think bitchy might be using a 16 colors per scanline mode, which should probably work okay with the modded display (haven't tested it myself).

 

I dont think so. there is not enough time to change more than than a few colors per scanline, didnt remember the exact number. If you got down with the framerate and reorder colors, you might get close. sure, if you put the framerate below 50Hz you might reach 16 (different) colors per scanline.

 

We had the discussion (here) years ago. Feel free to search the forum (coding maybe).

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