|Black boarders, which can be cropped.|
|Crop. Black line at the bottom added by VI.|
|PAL version. Crop can't do anything with black horizontal boarders.|
I was remembering about that not-critical but annoying problem. Crop of rendered buffer was quite easy and fast to implement. Removal of black boarders added by VI is harder. Recently I got one spare day and decided to make ultimate solution for that problem. The idea has direct analogue in real life. If whole TV picture looks like this:
TV could be tuned to enlarge the picture and move its edges out of visible area:
I made Overscan feature, which, when enabled, redirects output of Video Interface from screen to auxiliary render buffer. Part of that buffer then mapped to screen. In fact, it is Crop, but moved to the final stage of image processing. Offsets from each edge are user defined:
Of course, Overscan is compatible with widescreen hack:
|PAL game in FullHD + Overscan|
Why do that? I don't know. Just an option.
The only problem I see with Overscan feature is that I don't know how to make it automatically pick necessary offsets. User have to do it manually. Overscan settings can be added to ini file with custom game settings. That is, user may pick offsets for a game, save them as custom game settings and never return to that procedure. Custom settings use internal rom name, which is usually the same for PAL and NTSC versions. Since PAL and NTSC versions usually need different Overscan offsets, Overscan has two set of settings.
File with custom settings has plain text format. It can be modified in any text editor and until now it was the only way to update the custom settings file. I implemented save of current settings to custom ini from GUI to simplify that task for end users. If option "Use per-game settings" is enabled, GUI will suggest user to save current settings to custom section. Settings with non-default values will be added to custom section. Run a game, enable Overscan, pick offsets and when everything is Ok save settings to custom ini.
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