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The Amiga 2000 only outputs monchrome via the composite jack?

oblivion

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I just wanted to confirm this but does the Amiga 2000 only output monochrome via the rear composite jack? I wanted to do some simple video capturing via composite from my A2000 but all I was getting was a B/W signal. The Amiga is NTSC and not PAL. To firm this I even connected it up to a multi-format PVM with composite and still got a B/W image. After a quick google search I found some sources that indicate that the A2000 as well as the A1000 does indeed only output monochrome through its composite jack which strikes me as odd. I swear I remember capturing color footage from my A1000 through its composite jack. Is there something I'm doing wrong and need to enable to get color composite out? and if not what was the logic in only outputting B/W through composite when "lesser" computers like the C64 could do it.
 

rittwage

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Correct, the A2000 only has Luma on the yellow RCA jack. Why? That was just the design of the A500/A2000 boards. To get color composite, you needed the A520 adapter or the equivalent video card (which the latter was never released to my knowledge).

Everyone just used RGB on these computers. They were too-high resolution for composite anyway.
 

oblivion

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well, thanks for the confirmation. I've always used an RGB monitor myself but I still just find it a bit odd. why even add the composite jack at all? I'm not crazy in remembering the A1000 being able to do color composite out right?
 

rittwage

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well, thanks for the confirmation. I've always used an RGB monitor myself but I still just find it a bit odd. why even add the composite jack at all? I'm not crazy in remembering the A1000 being able to do color composite out right?

You are not crazy. Well, at least not about this. :)

The 1000 does output color composite, as does the 600 and 1200.
 

rpiguy2

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well, thanks for the confirmation. I've always used an RGB monitor myself but I still just find it a bit odd. why even add the composite jack at all? I'm not crazy in remembering the A1000 being able to do color composite out right?

Almost no one used the composite jack as intended - the Luma output of the A500/2000 was very clean and you could get an extremely sharp hi-res picture (640x400 interlaced) on a cheap, long-phosphor monochrome monitor. It was excellent for programming and word processing. You could hook your Amiga 500 up to a ten year old Apple Monitor III and get a great, non-flickery picture, albeit green.

Of course since color was one of the Amiga's selling points, the number of people who actually did this can probably be counted on one hand, lol.
 

gonk23

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I still just find it a bit odd. why even add the composite jack at all?

The monochrome composite signal can be fairly sharp, at least at those Amiga's native resolutions. So you could connect a cheap monochrome monitor, e.g. for word processing. At the time I remember connecting a long persistence green screen monitor and even interlace mode was usable. At the time the RGB colour monitors were quite expensive, so maybe the thinking was that you could connect the Amiga to the TV (via the A520) for games, and to a monochrome monitor for work.
 

eeguru

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On a related note, does anyone know of a (nos?) source for the 23-pin d-sub connectors? Either replacements for oxidized MB connectors or mating connectors for creating adapters/cabling?

I've noticed adapter ebayers using 25-pin and dremelling off a pair of pins!
 

KC9UDX

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They were getting scarce twenty years ago. When I modified a 25pin, I epoxied the empty part.

As for the monochrome output, this is something that apparently only I remember about that time. Colour computers were only for games, and "not for business". So if you wanted to sell your computers to businesses, you had to have monochrome output.

I did use a 12" green monitor for a very long time on that composite connector. I usually had a colour monitor in addition.
 

vwestlife

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As for the monochrome output, this is something that apparently only I remember about that time. Colour computers were only for games, and "not for business". So if you wanted to sell your computers to businesses, you had to have monochrome output.

And remember that the Atari ST came out first and had a hi-res 640x400 monochrome mode (with flicker-free 72 Hz refresh rate) that was popular for desktop publishing and MIDI sequencing. So Commodore probably thought it would be an important selling point for the Amiga to also have a 640x400 monochrome video output -- but the fact that it was interlaced and required a monitor with long-persistence phosphor to use without causing eyestrain was one of the reasons why it was never widely used.
 

ngtwolf

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They were getting scarce twenty years ago. When I modified a 25pin, I epoxied the empty part.

That's apparently pretty common thing, they used to do it for the equally scarce 19 pin connector.

Read this a while back, it was pretty interesting (and someone in the comments also asked about the idea of doing this for the amiga 23 pin connector). This process could be done to make new 23 pin connectors, but honestly I don't think there's enough demand.

https://www.bigmessowires.com/2016/06/04/db-19-resurrecting-an-obsolete-connector/
 

Jo22

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I share the same point of view. The "composite jack" really was just intended a plain VBS output (Colour VBS/CVBS=Composite).
However, it produced sharp and clean pictures on the green monitors of the time, so that's okay. My XT clone, a Nixdorf M35, also has such a "mono" connector on the backside.
Sometimes I wondered why they did this. After several years, I came to the conclusion that companies simply decided that way in order to not have to bother
with different TV standard around the world, such a PAL, SECAM, NTSC in various forms (PAL B/G/M, NTSC 50 etc).
It also simplified the integrated video (just look at how huge Amiga's RGB to Compsite brick is) and gave everything a more professional note.
 

Svenska

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After several years, I came to the conclusion that companies simply decided that way in order to not have to bother
with different TV standard around the world, such a PAL, SECAM, NTSC in various forms (PAL B/G/M, NTSC 50 etc).
It is about image quality. In high resolutions, the monochrome signal contains much higher frequencies (sharp edges) which bleed into the color signal, making those resolutions virtually unusable (especially in NTSC). By not having a color signal in the first place, there was nothing to destroy - and a monochrome screen (or TV) would happily display those high frequencies, giving you an extremely clear image. However, a color screen would filter those high frequencies even in monochrome mode (because they belong to the color circuitry), reducing clarity.
 

Jo22

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It is about image quality. In high resolutions, the monochrome signal contains much higher frequencies (sharp edges) which bleed into
the color signal, making those resolutions virtually unusable (especially in NTSC). By not having a color signal in the first place, there was nothing to destroy -
and a monochrome screen (or TV) would happily display those high frequencies, giving you an extremely clear image. However, a color screen would filter those high
frequencies even in monochrome mode (because they belong to the color circuitry), reducing clarity.
Plus the circumstances that there used to be professional monochrome monitors at the time.
Monitors from the security sector could display 800 lines, for example, which is still relevant for modern b/w cameras.
Another nice side effect was the independace of NTSC alltogether. All analogue video monitors can do both 50Hz and 60Hz (in monochrome),
if the v-sync knob was tuned accordingly. Anyway, these were just my errm. alternate facts to this topic, so please don't mind. ;)
Independendly, the Amiga folks seemed to really care about this contrast issue, also.
If I'm not mistaken, picture quality (sharpness) was the reason to decide for Kickstart's blue-white-orange theme. :)
It provided best contrast on cheap US television sets (I was going to say NTSC, but then I would have insulted owners of High Quality Japanese TV sets, too. :D)
 
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