Is the world going CRT crazy?

YouKnowWho

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I'm seeing CRT monitors reach a premium I've not seen. In just the past year 1084s and 1942s have easily doubled, even triple in price. Sony and other aperture grille tubes are fetching premiums too. Has the world realized that the best way to experience retro computing is on a period CRT?

These new Amiga flicker fixers and boards just don't seem to work smoothly with CRT. I tried a few Indivisions, and they just don't seem to work out of the box the way you would expect them to. Vs. for example the GVP IV24 I plugged into the 4000 and it just works beautifully flicker fixing to a CRT VGA.

Every new/modern device for flickerfixing or RTG seems to be geared toward LCD panel usage. And the deeper I dive the more issues those users seem to experience as I read reviews, even on LCDs. From tedious setups, to creating modes, to tweaking each mode, to modes not looking right, to image position being off...it's just a total pain it seems. Even LCD monitors that show 15kHz seem to be a pain. These devices are full of built-in frustration. Not to mention the native resolutions of LCD do all types of messy. things to all the Amiga modes that don't match evenly into it, vs CRTs, which show every res cleanly with no artifacts.

Tell you what is never an issue. Plugging appropriate Commodore monitor into an Amiga. It's simple. Just GO!

Is this the reason CRT monitors are going nuts in prices? Glad to see all of these being refurbished and kept out of the trash, finding years of more use.
 
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SilkWorm

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Haven't you said in another thread(s) the retro sales and prices are dropping, and all our Amiga computers will be worth much less or nothing soon?
It does not stick together what you write now.
 

YouKnowWho

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There will always be segments. While demand for hardware is already dropping as retro nostalgia is satisfied, there is still a market around it related to maintaining and improving that hardware. Although could TerribleFire and their decision to fade out product development be a canary in the coal mine regarding even that market?

This CRT phenomenon is also a delayed admission that modern screen technology just won't do the trick.

Let's call the CRT buying spike a trailing wave of retro accessorizing. After all, buyers likely already have the retro to connect to a CRT they are buying.
 

SilkWorm

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The spike is created because:
- either the supply is extremely low - because all the happy Amiga owners you wrote about in another thread also bought CRTs a long time ago and do not want to sell it, or if they do then only for a lot of money,
- or the demand exploded with supply being not that high to satisfy it - here most likely because as you stated some most likely recent retro users had realize, LCD experience is not what they remember (and I agree with that - it is not)
 
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YouKnowWho

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@SilkWorm I think my view is also tilted a bit towards Europe. For us here, Commodore monitors are going for about as much as they were a year ago. Maybe <Snip> USD or so more at most for cleaner examples. But in Germany for example, I'm seeing 1084s sell for <Snip> Euro each lately, where as last year they were regularly out there for <Snip> Euro range - every day, all the time. Some prime examples that were not yellowed, clean and power switch fixed would get closer to <Snip> Euro. The original square ones can still be had cheap, but the newer ones - two sold today, one nearly <Snip> Euro - and it wasn't THAT special looking. Definitely a wave of Commodore CRT sweeping Amigaland in Europe.

Why am I noticing? I need a flap for a 1084D2. :)
 
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davideo

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Don't forget NO discussion on prices.

I'll <Snip> in a tic or two
 

YouKnowWho

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Don't forget NO discussion on prices.

I'll <Snip> in a tic or two
If only Governments could have such control davideo, inflation wouldn't even be a thing! Just <Snip> it in the bud! :)

By the way...forgive. I did well in my first post, but then things went rogue in the follow up with prices galore.
 

Karlosjackel

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Lately, I've had an "opportunity" to own a CM8833 from my main dealer <it was cheep> - It needed repair (no surprise huh?) and here's the thing... After I cleaned and repaired it, got a proper 23pin - SCART lead... [fiddled about with all the dials etc] gingerly turned it on with one eye closed [safety squints] with a pokey finger on the power button - a rock steady vision of WB3.2 appeared. The picture itself looked as though it belong there... No borders, interpolation, no RGB2HDMI, no GBS-control or any other dongle or widget. I loaded up my fav game atm... Reshootr.. And Wow... What a difference!

I wasn't personally looking for a CRT, my 15kHz compatible LCD is alright (I generally use OSSC adapter) but its not great - but look at the resolutions our Amigas pump out... Not surprised!

CRTs are in demand I believe not only for the eco-system of the tech its going to run on, but again for the nostalgia element. Having a CRT completes the aesthetics of the set up, an LCD although functional looks odd.

A lot of CRT units are now as old as the hills, originally thrown away into into landfil/Weeeeeeeeee bins and majority of the time anything you get now you have to repair the thing prior to use. This stuff was made back in the late 80s onward... Even without being powered up, caps still dry out.. It's inevitable they will eventually give up the ghost.

When LCD came out, I remember wanting to scale the room back taken up by these lumbering beasts (certainly past the 17" mark, remember the WIDESCREEN Sony Trinitrons? Those were as deep as they wide and damn heavy!!!)

The scarcity if these CRTs have certainly pushed values up to nearly their original price. The trouble is.. People pay those prices!

I've been spoilt by LCD and would hate to return to CRT it in everyday life. I spend most of my life staring into a VDU, for work.

For me, CRT is a love hate relationship, yeah, great for a short blast of Amiga Powered nostalgia, but would I had activity seemed one out... Nah. But the native 15kHz signal displayed on an actual 15kHz CRT looks great!
 

YouKnowWho

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@Karlosjackel - great flashback story. I agree fully that a CRT just looks right. Look at Stephen with the new LCD he released - he made it way way deeper, so the thing doesn't look like a 2D nothing. Oh sure, it's OK behind an Amiga 1200, but an LCD sitting on top of a desktop Amiga just always looks silly to me. Odd as you say. Whenever I see an LCD on top of a desktop Amiga case, to me, it looks like it's in for service and will be moving out soon. Like it's not a permanent installation. Flimsy. Not anchored. :)

I have recently got my little hands on a 1942, that's a nice little monitor right there. I put that thing on a period flicker fixer, and my goodness, I could look at that thing all day long. 1084s are fantastic as well, you get the 15kHz, and you can throw in a retro console on it as well. I just recently learned that the Chroma input means that these can also take an S-Video input. Quite a versatile little monitor right there. I guess right there I explained to myself why these have spiked in demand.

I was fortunate to partake in the desktop publishing craze that started mid 90s. Had my hands on all types of monitors, including a 24" Sony Trinitron that came on a pallet and cost decent used car money. These aperture grille tubes were nothing short of amazing quality. The color accuracy, the contrast, the blacks, the refresh rates - just incredible, especially coming from Amiga and then those cheap shadow mask VGA monitors that were everywhere. I gave up my CRT begrudgingly early 2000s, told that these new LCDs are better. They weren't. Sure, we use them today, and the technology has moved along quite nicely. But there are plenty of things CRTs could do better, and still would do better today vs. even some of the best LCDs. Perhaps those things aren't as important to users anymore. I remember doing the math on a 19" LCD and 19" CRT back then. The CRT could do 1600x1200, it was 4:3. 19" LCD was 1280x1024 while still 4:3 - that's 30% less desktop space. Once the 19" LCD went to 16:9 I remember doing the math and saying to myself - wait a minute - that's like 20%+ smaller surface are than 4:3 - nice marketing trick! ...able to advertise 19", yet not be same 19" - consumer was getting way less panel than the 4:3 19" LCD. So 30% lost on resolution difference, and 20% lost on screen area..hmmm. Things have gotten better, but there are still plenty of brand new model monitors out there being released today, which can't hold a candle to a 20+ year old CRT.

Hey...am I justifying the growing prices and the value of a CRT monitor? :)
 

YouKnowWho

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Hey, what happened to IDEK monitors?

I've been reading a bunch of Amiga porn (Amiga World back pages of shopping ads from '92-'94) and I keep seeing Idek CRTs advertised, and I never see these for sale. Never came across them back in the day up here in Canada either. Was this a US only brand?
 

vic20owner

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CRT's just look better imo, and if you are retro computing there is nothing uglier than a modern black flat screen connected to a nice retro computer with display distorted or off center with weird artifacts. I'd rather just deal with flicker!

I think CRT prices will continue to climb personally as they become harder and harder to find in good condition.
 

Karlosjackel

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@vic20owner Funny you should say that, there is a chap on this very bay who is selling a Commodore branded 1960 monitor for .. it appears to be in VGC, plastics look good, picture looks sharp.

No doubt it will tick the box for someone to complete not only the aesthetics but the functionality of the end setup.

But let's think about this, we - the consumers are feeding into the scarcity market and driving up the prices. We could *not* buy these devices, but FOMO (fear of missing out) kicks in... Somebody will buy it and *we* will miss out.

Similar to how much someone is prepared for a Amiga, I would hope CRTs will too hit a plateau. We *the end user/community* could draw an imaginary line in the sand through agreement *not* to buy at $nnn price.

But, in conclusion, this won't happen, and if you want it you will pay whatever the seller asks [and be grateful :D ].

The joys of retro unobtainium!
 
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UberFreak

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I still find CRTs in the street or in recycling centers from time to time, and I still see advertisements in local for-sale boards of people offering big CRTs (29 inch and up) for free, just so someone will do the heavy lifting for them...
At this point I have enough CRTs to last my lifetime, with sizes ranging from 14" up to 29".
 

YouKnowWho

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Not that I want to brag @UberFreak, but my CRT journey eventually took me to a Sony 40" XBR CRT tube HD TV back in the early 2000s. It was 4:3, it did HD beautifully, it was amazing in all the things CRTs do. Reluctantly, I left it behind some 10 years back for free, mostly because it didn't have a HDTV tuner. How would a flickerfixed workbench look on this 40" CRT anyhow?

Why do I mention this? Because you talk about FREE 29" TVs so that someone will lift them and take them out, which are what...little tiny 'light' 50kg? This 40" CRT, at only 11 inches larger was 3x the weight at 150kg! MONSTER. And it needed a special stand, onto which it needed to be lifted and perfectly aligned before being set down. I had to help the 2 guys who delivered it. You dared not even consider some third-party stand for this beast. You actually had to consider if the floor would sag in the spot you were going to set it. Add a 50kg power amp next to it and a pair of 100kg/each speakers on that same wall and all that entertainment weight is adding up quickly. You add a harmless SNES under the TV and the whole thing may end up being a floor down!

Pause for a moment to consider the fun math that goes into screen sizes by the way. The 40" is only 38% larger vs 29", but actual viewable surface area in cm2 of the 40" is nearly exactly double (1.99x) that of the 29". As already mentioned 4:3 is larger than 16:9. Take a 40" 4:3 like this XBR Sony I had, and you have to shave 11% off the viewable surface area to get a 40" 16:9, reminding us that all diagonal viewable inches are not the same.

Not trying to get into contest of any sort, just highlighting that Sony, of all companies, ACTUALLY made this amazing 40" CRT beast, and beside having an incredible HD tube with 4:3 ratio 1080 capability, inputs that basically future proofed it, including DVI if you wanted to use it as a PC monitor (which I did) it had two value-added features. 1. It could not ever be stolen from your home for obvious reasons. 2. It was actually incredibly stamped as Manufactured in the USA! I guess blowing these glass CRT tubes in Asia and shipping these monsters into North America made no economic sense. Amazing that one of the best CRT tubes ever made, was Made here in NA. To be honest, the TV offered an entirely justifiable value and very fair price. Not by today's cheap panel prices, but back then, it was 1/3 the price of a Pioneer plasma TV, which quite honestly was inferior, beside the flat part. Plasma flat TV was new and sooo cool to even say. What ever happened to plasma by the way? Does anyone care about this retro-tech blip?

As a side note, considering CRTs emit radiation - can you imagine the emissions on these giant XBR 40" CRT tubes? I wonder...was it "one full chest X-ray equivalent per hour of viewing?" What if I got closer up on the floor while playing Mario? Mushroom...cloud? :)
 

Watson

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X-ray emissions from CRT aren't significant enough to be a health concern and certainly not equivalent to an x-ray machine lol.

Edit:

Just read the following,

"A CRT operating at the designed operating voltage will have no harmful X-Ray emission. If the high voltage were to go too high then the tube could produce X-Rays however there are safety circuits in place on all modern CRT monitors that are designed to shut the set down long before Xrays are emitted."
 

YouKnowWho

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Watson, sure sure, it's not the x-rays that are keeping you so mesmerized. :cool:

Also, as per below, 2 hours a day of CRT (sure we're talking about something like an average 15" range CRT, not a 40" CRT here) gave you another dose of background annual dose. Considering that I'd often spend double to triple that per day in my young formative years, plus a 20" TV on the side in my room at the same time...yikes. Then I finished it off with the 40" CRT for desert in early 2000s. Of course there were those Amiga Toaster suite users, 8 hours a day or more, multiple monitors again...yikes. RADIO-TOASTED! :)

CRTs can emit a small amount of X-ray radiation; this is a result of the electron beam's bombardment of the shadow mask/aperture grille and phosphors, which produces bremsstrahlung (braking radiation) as the high-energy electrons are decelerated. The amount of radiation escaping the front of the monitor is widely considered to be not harmful. The Food and Drug Administration regulations in 21 CFR 1020.10 are used to strictly limit, for instance, television receivers to 0.5 milliroentgens per hour at a distance of 5 cm (2 in) from any external surface; since 2007, most CRTs have emissions that fall well below this limit. Note that the roentgen is an outdated unit and does not account for dose absorption. The conversion rate is about .877 roentgen per rem. Assuming that the viewer absorbed the entire dose (which is unlikely), and that they watched TV for 2 hours a day, a .5 milliroentgen hourly dose would increase the viewers yearly dose by 320 millirem. For comparison, the average background radiation in the United States is 310 millirem a year.

I like how ...since 2007 most CRTs have emissions that fall well below this limit. Since 2007? When no one bought a CRT? When no one manufactured CRTs? Thanks for looking out for us consumers.
 

Watson

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Watson, sure sure, it's not the x-rays that are keeping you so mesmerized. :cool:
Haha :cool:

I like how ...since 2007 most CRTs have emissions that fall well below this limit. Since 2007? When no one bought a CRT? When no one manufactured CRTs? Thanks for looking out for us consumers.
Maybe this is why some of us people were going bald before our time haha, all jokes aside, that's messed up!
I still have all my hair though! YouKnowWho are you bald yet? :LOL:
 
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