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Thread: White specks when loading - Genesis Model 2 - Normal?

  1. #1
    Devil Man Road Rasher evil_ash_xero's Avatar
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    Default White specks when loading - Genesis Model 2 - Normal?

    I have a Genesis Model 2 and a Mega Drive Model 2. I've noticed that with a number of games there will be white specks when loading a stage. Sometimes a straight line of them, at the top of the screen while the screen is black. Sometimes a little bit in the game, while it loads some text up, like "GO" or whatever. This is especially noticeable in Streets of Rage 2 when the screen is black between stages, or the aforementioned "GO".
    It's not really during the game, unless it's loading a new section of a stage. And it just lasts a second.
    Some games don't have this at all.

    I am using an EverDrive, and using RGB to Component converters. I thought maybe it was Voultar's video chip that I got my Gen modded with, but my unmodded (at the time) Mega Drive Model 2 did the same thing.
    It has these very regularly when I go to the menu of the EverDrive, during a game, and going to the menu or whatever.

    I have tried with normal carts, and they were exactly the same, in the same exact places.

    Is this just a Genesis 2 thing? Unfortunately, I don't have any other ones around that have composite output, so I can't really check.

    My systems are kinda modded out, with Voultars RGB chip, region switch, and CCAM mods. So, I'm just wondering if someone has a virgin Genesis Model 2, that is hooked up the same way and has this quirk?

    A good spot to see if this happens, is when you start Sonic the Hedgehog 1, and right underneath "Sonic Team Presents", you'll get a little line of white.
    Last edited by evil_ash_xero; 05-04-2019 at 07:23 PM.

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    Outrunner Eep386's Avatar
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    I don't notice any such glitches through composite video on my CXA1645M fitted VA2.3 Model 2 Genesis on Streets of Rage 2.

    Sounds like you might have a case of 'mod-itis', brought about by adding too many floating circuit boards to a console. :P

    All kidding aside though, it shouldn't do things like that unless either a) the game is programmed like crap and tries to load lots of data during frame time ignorant of things like DMA overflow or frame sync, or b) maybe there was a severe grounding/noise issue someplace. For starters, check your cabling and the ground wires on the circuit boards. Do bear in mind that having lots of floaty circuit boards connected to a console in areas without EMI filtering etc. isn't usually a very good idea if you're trying to minimize noise, unless you take fairly rigorous precautions with regard to keeping the cable length in check (very long hook up wires tend to pick up noise like an antenna) and circuit board placement (NEVER place audio mod boards close to things like the VDP or video encoder, you're just asking for tons of noise pickup). Also, if you modded a VA0/1/1.8, did you properly terminate the onboard op-amps after installing your CCAM? Most instruction guides on the Interwebs leave out this non optional step. Uncommitted op-amps that are not properly terminated will, not can, will oscillate, saturate (as the signal level is determined purely by noise, sometimes they slam from one rail to the other at very high speeds, which results in terrible power efficiency and extra noise), inject tons of trash into the power rails, and just plain misbehave until something is done to keep their signal levels properly centered.

    On the VA0/1/1.8, after installing a Mega Amp or CCAM you can usually just remove the '324 at IC9 (the one on the right, with the controller ports facing you) entirely, cutting your workload in half. IC10 (the left one) must remain though as one of its op-amps is also driving the reset logic.
    Last edited by Eep386; 05-04-2019 at 11:29 PM.

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    Devil Man Road Rasher evil_ash_xero's Avatar
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    I'll have to talk to my modder about that.
    I do have another fellow on another board who has the same thing happen on his model 1, on SoR2. Shared a video with me.
    I'm not sure if he has any mods though, yet.

    Here's the vid. Don't bother watching it in the browser, as it compresses it and screws it up. It needs to be downloaded and watched. Only 22 MB though.

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/mrcybdj7er...505_012932.mp4
    Last edited by evil_ash_xero; 05-05-2019 at 12:24 AM.

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    Video Game Modder Outrunner segasonicfan's Avatar
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    but my unmodded (at the time) Mega Drive Model 2 did the same thing.
    Am I missing something? Doesn't this rule out the chance of this problem being related to the modding work?

    if this problem shows up on modded and unmodded systems then its time to inspect your AV setup

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    Devil Man Road Rasher evil_ash_xero's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by segasonicfan View Post
    Am I missing something? Doesn't this rule out the chance of this problem being related to the modding work?

    if this problem shows up on modded and unmodded systems then its time to inspect your AV setup
    It's been a while, and honestly, I have forgotten if it was exactly the same, worse, or better. That's why I'm asking a forum of Genesis owners. lol
    I have experimented a bit with what I have. I had the systems running into a switch box, and I hooked them straight into the TV. Same problem.
    I have Voultar's RGB Bypass, so I can't try Composite or RF. So, I'm kind of stuck on that one.
    When I had the other Genesis (the unmodded one), it was hooked into my TV via composite. And it did the same thing. But at the time, I wasn't really playing tons of Genesis...and I only noticed it when I was playing Strider. But it was the same on there, as was when I would restart the Mega Everdrive.
    And then we have the fellow that shared that video (he has an RGB Bypass as well, but I am not sure if it's the same as mine). Which that is the exact thing I am experiencing, to a T. From what I understand, the other forum I am going to think they are just CRAM dots.

    I am interested in any input, because sometimes it is the setup (such as flashing on some games, when hooked into a switch box), and sometimes it is system specific (like white dots appearing in certain games on the SNES mini). I don't want to jump to conclusions too fast.

    Also, it is not every game. Some games like Rocket Knight Adventures, Vampire Killer, and many more, have no issues of any kind.

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    Now with 33% more @$$! Master of Shinobi Assman's Avatar
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    I get the same thing in the same scenarios on my model 1. They just look like CRAM dots to me. I'm not enough of a techie to give you a full rundown on what that means, but essentially, these dots appear somewhere on the screen when a new palette is loaded. The in-game areas I can think of where they're most prominent are during a water level in a Sonic game (the water line has a bunch of flickering dots where the palette is being swapped mid-screen) and on pretty much any screen in Samurai Shodown.

    Admittedly, I could be wrong on the CRAM thing, but nevertheless I'm fairly confident that it's normal and that any official Genesis revision you could find would have the same results. Don't worry about it.

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    Hedgehog-in-Training Hedgehog-in-TrainingSports Talker
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    Yep, those are normal.

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    Video Game Modder Outrunner segasonicfan's Avatar
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    It's been a while, and honestly, I have forgotten if it was exactly the same, worse, or better. That's why I'm asking a forum of Genesis owners. lol
    yeah, that makes sense. its just your own words seemed to rule out the modding work, but then you questioned it.

    Im just looking out for my fellow modders and diy retro game folks. Its good to do some process of elimination before questioning someones hard work as causing a problem, especially if your naming the modder on a public forum.

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    Outrunner Eep386's Avatar
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    EDIT 3 AND KNUCKLES: OK, I also reproduced that part AND got the white flickers (a fairly healthy amount of them too) across composite video on my mostly-stock VA2.3 Model 2 Genesis. Guess I have to agree with the others, it's nothing to worry about.

    In my defense though, it's a bit hard to tell without a picture or video. Thankfully the OP provided a video clip. Now if it were _consistently_ across the screen then it'd be some noise issue as I presumed.
    Last edited by Eep386; 05-06-2019 at 11:40 AM.

  10. #10
    Devil Man Road Rasher evil_ash_xero's Avatar
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    I sort of thought so, but since I don't have an unmodded one now...I was getting a little paranoid.
    Seems like this is totally normal.
    And no, it's not all the time. Just in very select circumstances. SoR2 really made me notice them, though.

    Thanks for the input.

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