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RGB SCART TV Buying Guide

Here's our RGB SCART TV Buying Guide

 

It's 2017 guys, so if you're still on the hunt for an old CRT TV to enjoy those light gun games and the vivid colours from RGB SCART with scanlines, then you better hurry up! Most of them are long gone.

 

Finding an old TV like this is getter harder and harder by the day. Drive down any street and you will invariably see a discarded CRT on the side of the road, face down in the dirt. As I drive past I have an overwhelming urge to rescue them all like a stray dog, but unfortunately space, time and my wife harmony permits.

Retro Gaming CRT

 

 

 

So let's get straight to the point. You're looking for a CRT that is one of the 'good ones' right? I hear these questions all the time, so let's go over it.

 

Which is the best CRT TV for retro gaming? Loewe, as they look amazing!

Which TV has RGB SCART inputs? Many, keep reading.

Are 100hz TVs any good for retro gaming? No! Don't even go there. Typically all widescreen CRTs are 100hz, so that's an easy way to tell.

 

Right off the bat, Loewe CRT TVs from the late 90's to early 2000's are the best ones to look for. Why? Because they were sold locally here in Australia and distribution was in Melbourne. You'll often find them in the prime real estate suburbs such as Melbourne's Inner East. They also perform better than any other consumer TV tested.

Make - Loewe German TV (Pronounced Lur-Ver)

Tubes - Phillips

Inputs - They nearly always have SCART (One enabled for RGB)

Size - Anything around 27 to 28 inch is the best with a square 4:3 ratio. Avoid anything widescreen 16:9 as they were usually always 100hz and just too modern for retro gaming. The image will tear and blur as they had early forms of image processing enabled.

Models - If you see an ad always check the rear label for the model number. Ask the seller to take a quick photo on their phone and send it to you. Here's the summary of what you're looking for.

If the label says 100hz or has a Z anywhere, let it go. It's common to see PIP (Picture in picture) feature of the newer 100hz ones, so that's another tell tail sign of ones to avoid. You want an older 50/60hz model. Generally, these older ones just don't say anything like that on the rear label.

Good - 50/60hz with E3000 Chassis!

loewe calida 5072 crt rgb scart

 

Bad - 100hz image processing

100hz crt tv

 

Loewe model numbers follow this format:

Brand | Style | Model | Features

Loewe | Calida | 5072 | 

Loewe | Ergo | 6772 | ZP

Loewe | Profil Plus | 3472

There are so many variants, but steer clear of any models ending in ZP or a Z in general as they are all 100hz

Once you have the model number such as 5072 you can look it up in this PDF to see which type of chassis it had. This list is not 100% perfect, but it's a great start to decode the models and find the desirable chassis codes.

You see in this case the "LOEWE Calida 5072" has an E3000 chassis. Perfect!

The ideal chassis type you want are either of these:

C9003

E3000 - Link to Manual

E3001

 

 

You may find further specs here to help decode the model - Link 

 

Good example TVs matching the right specs are:

Calida 5072

Profil Plus 3472

Loewe CT1170

Contur 1470

Loewe ART 9500 (very large)

 

 

Entering the Service Menu

Press the front menu button on the TV until "Service" is displayed, then quickly press Menu on the remote.

 

Where to find them?

Well, I find https://www.gumtree.com.au/ the best location as the seller wants a cheap and easy way to get rid of the TV. eBay is too expensive, so I focussed my search on Gumtree. Put in a search term of "Loewe tv" (without quotes) and just subscribe to the listings. If its widescreen, forget it. If it's a 4:3 then dig a bit deeper and look up the model number on the PDF listed earlier.

 

What about VGA input for SEGA Dreamcast?

Well, that's a rare beast indeed, but if you come across one you should grab it as they can look stunning in VGA and high resolution. These models are 100hz and generally, I would avoid them, but, if it rear of the TV also has a VGA input socket (DB15) it means it was fitted with the optional VGA card from the factory. These are highly desirable and look absolutely stunning for Dreamcast! (not other consoles) Still always aim for a 4:3 ratio one, not a 16:9 widescreen.

Good example models are:

Loewe Ergo 6772 ZP

You'll notice the ZP on the end. That's 100hz, but it also has VGA and in that mode can accept the Dreamcast signal in 640x480 (480p progressive scan) in RGBHV at 31 kHz. Games like House of the Dead 2 look and play exceptionally well on this VGA TV. Yes the Dreamcast light guns work on these TVs.

So it's tempting to pick up a VGA TV for Dreamcast, buy you'll need another one for all the other consoles.

Remember that old light gun games like NES Duck Hunt operate at very precise timings that are based on standard TV definition 240P and 50/60hz, and not the faster 100hz screens. These are too fast and will mess with the timing of the gun and the position that you're aiming. Some HDTVs from those days can work, but more often than not your light gun games won't be accurate or work at all.Always stick to a 4:3 screen at 50/60hz!

Always stick to a 4:3 screen at 50/60hz!

 

 

If you can't find a Loewe TV, here's some other makes and models to look out for that are also good.

 

Grundig

These are also German TVs sold in Australia that use Phillips tubes and are 50/60hz with SCART inputs.

Models

Gundig M95-795 89cm around 1996 with RGB SCART

Grundig Xentia MFW 82 490 9 - This one is 100hz but it has VGA, so it's good for Dreamcast only.

 

Metz

Another great German brand sold here, but quite uncommon. I don't have any experience with these but they do have RGB SCART inputs and were 50/60hz. I think the later 100hz models were more common so do your research on the exact model number before buying. 

 

Bang & Olufsen

Another great European brand sold here that ticks all the boxes.

I've used a few of these and generally think they are good, but not as sharp or vivid as the Loewe models.

Models: MX7000 & MX8000. The older models like Beovision MX4000 are OK.

 

Siemens

Another German TV which is very uncommon in Australia, but I have had good results with this model. I found this one in Melbourne.

Model: Siemens FS247 with RGB SCART

 

NEC

Japanese maker NEC had one or two great consumer grade TVs. If you can find the XM29 you should buy it. It's very rare TV but an amazing unit as it performs somewhat like a PVM monitor as it has a lof of inputs and looks fantastic.

Model: NEC Multisync XM29 monitor

 

Sony

They are better known for their later models for actually watching TV instead of gaming. The Sony Trinitron range was exceptional for TV and Video back in the day, but unfortunately, they went the best for 240P retro gaming. They almost never came with RGB SCART inputs and maxed out with Component video input.

If you're lucky enough to find an imported TV from the UK you may get a SCART one but even then they are not as good as the German brands.Sony KVA2942U

Model: Sony KVA2942U

Model: Sony KV2900T is a good performer

 

Mitsubishi

Very old models sometimes had RGB SCART, so it's a real treasure hunt to find one of these. In my opinion, it's not worth the hassle as they are not as good as the German TVs and very old and heavy.

Model: Mitsubishi CT-3762QEM

 

 

Regardless of which CRT you end up with, at least you'll be enjoying your retro gaming the way it was meant to be played! ...and once you have your RGB SCART TV, you'll need a proper cable to go with it.

We only recommend the cables from retrogamingcables.co.uk

 

 

 

 

RGB SCART input

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Comments

  • Hal - November 14, 2018

    Do you know of any consumer TVs that have both Scart and component inputs and are 4:3? Preferably 21" to 24"

  • Roddi - February 25, 2018

    Bought a 50hz Loewe Planus 4072, which has the E3000 chassis. Works great with my Amiga. Came with a manual that I think is for all the E3000 models. On the back cover it lists the following models – these could be the ones to look out for:
    Calida 5155, Calida 5063, Calida 5072
    Contur 1263 S, Contur 1270 S
    Planus 4063, Planus 4072
    Profil 2163, Profil 2163 S, Profil 2170, Profil 2170 S, Profil 3070, Profil 3070 S
    Modus 4472

    Good hunting!

  • Billy - February 06, 2018

    Hi! Nice blog. I would like to know if the sony Trinitron kv x2571a is a 100hz one. Ive already tried to find something about it in the manual but…its pretty difficult! Cause there is no information on it

    Nothing about pip by the way..

  • Darren - Admin - September 24, 2017

    Tony – The reason I didn’t mention Sony Trinitrons is because they don’t support RGB like you said. They only support Composite and Component. They’re good but not as good as German TVs in my opinion.

  • Tony - September 09, 2017

    Yeah I am shocked to see nothing about Trinitrons and only about Loewe TVs. I have never used a Loewe but I suppose in order to run rgb, its the best money can find,

  • Guy - July 29, 2017

    Love your work as always.Thanks for an awesome write up!

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