Design considerations – part 2

In our earlier post we explained a little about all the choices that have to be made when developing new hardware for MSX. One of those choices was whether we  should support input connectors on Franky for the MSX video output signals. After looking at all the options, we decided not to support this functionality. Let me explain this decision. First of all, there are a lot of MSX computers which have different types of output signals. We can simply not support all (TV PAL/ TV NTSC/RGB/CVBS). Second, space on the Franky PCB itself is limited (take a look at the earlier posted photo of the Franky PCB).  Third, all that extra logic to reroute input signals not only costs money in terms of electronic parts and thus the final sale price, but also makes the design even more complex than it already is. And bigger and more complex designs are more vulnerable for errors, during assembling and operation.

Now, before everybody start throwing tomatoes; we did include one thing and that might also solve a lot of problems regarding your monitor setup, namely the inclusion of a PAL/NTSC encoder for CVBS (composite) output . If you have a TV or monitor with support for switchable RGB and CVBS input signals (Like most TV’s have, and for example the Philips CM 8833 MSX monitor) you can connect your MSX to RGB and Franky to the CVBS input signals (or vice versa) and there you go.

Another option is to buy an external switch box for video signals. There’s one lying here, it costs about 15 euros  and it eats multiple SCART and CVBS input/output signals.