video games

Open-Source Scan Converter Pro Released

The Open-Source Scan Converter (OSSC) is a long-running hardware project to scale and convert your classic analog video signals coming from older game consoles to digital signals over HDMI that modern displays (like TVs and monitors) will understand better.

Instead of relying on the weak scalers built into the new displays, the OSSC gives you higher resolution video while also adding more options and connection types. The upscaling the original OSSC does was as close to adding no-lag as possible by simply multiplying the original video input lines without a buffer. This strategy has its benefits and weaknesses. The main benefit is that it is very fast. The weakness is that it can’t have more advanced effects and output compatibility on the video signal that you might get from a more full featured scaling device.

Just released today is the Open-Source Scan Converter Pro, an updated version of the OSSC that has a few improvements over the original but doesn’t replace the OSSC. The Pro’s main addition over the original OSSC is a built-in scaler as an option in addition to the line multiplication features.

The OSSC Pro also has an HDMI input to accept modded consoles and more, and take them from their original lower resolutions up to 1440p at a maximum.

That 1440p maximum output resolution is the biggest limitation of the new OSSC Pro.

Both OSSC projects also have the benefits of their open-source firmware and a community of interested developers and users making the product better over time.

The original OSSC costs about $150 USD with all the needed accessories from the main hardware seller, VGP in the UK. The new OSSC Pro is about $340 from VGP and currently out of stock at the time of writing.

Coming next month is the RetroTINK4K, a competing scaler from Mike Chi that supports a 4K resolution output signal. That 4K resolution comes at a high price, $750 USD. The $325 USD RetroTINK 5X from Mike Chi was the highest end modern scaler until the RT4K was announced.