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Television Standards Converters, Modulators etc Standards converters, modulators anything else for providing signals to vintage televisions.

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Old 11th Nov 2004, 8:01 pm   #1
ppppenguin
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Default Aurora converter - Review

I have had a sample of the Aurora standards converter for review. Unfortunately I missed the deadline for the Christmas edition of the BVWS Bulletin so it won't appear until the spring. In the meantime I'll publish a short extract here. Inevitably I have to compare the two converters that are currently available. I hope I have been fair to both Aurora and Domino.

INTRODUCTION
The Aurora multistandard converter can not only produce 405 line pictures but a whole range of other standards from 819 all the way down to 30 lines. It can also accept PAL, NTSC or SECAM inputs. It does not have a modulator.

CONCLUSIONS
How do you choose between Domino and Aurora, both fine products at comparable prices. The Aurora is a beautifully engineered product and is difficult to fault. The main omission is a modulator. If you have any interest in vintage standards apart from 405 then you have just one choice.

If your sole interest is UK 405 line TV then the Domino converter provides a very effective solution that will do the whole job straight out of the box.


Look on this web site for price, availability and ordering:
http://converter.home.comcast.net/

For the Domino converter look at:
http://www.domino405.co.uk

Last edited by Dave Moll; 4th Jun 2007 at 2:59 pm. Reason: update URL link
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Old 11th Nov 2004, 8:15 pm   #2
BlowFish
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Default Re: Aurora converter - Review

The price of the Aurora is quoted at $599 which is about £325 (GB Pounds) based on current exchange rates, allowing for shipping, Vat and custom charges then the price would be similar to the Domino converter. (Not inclusive of the modulator)

Its a very good thing if you collect sets from other countries, especially from the US

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Old 11th Nov 2004, 8:49 pm   #3
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Default Re: Aurora converter - Review

My Aurora arrived without suffering customs or VAT charges. I think the package is smaller than the critical weight at which customs take a serious interest. Ultimately it's the luck of the draw.
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Old 11th Nov 2004, 10:02 pm   #4
evingar
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Default Re: Aurora converter - Review

Quote:
My Aurora arrived without suffering customs or VAT charges. I think the package is smaller than the critical weight at which customs take a serious interest. Ultimately it's the luck of the draw.
Yes, I have found for smallish packages it seems to be a 1 in 3 chance of getting " caught " - Get a kind vendor to state it's a " commercial sample” and the chances fall still further


Onto the matter of the converter its self. I have just read the manual and for what it does this bit of kit is **astounding** value for money IMHO,!! The problem being of course (from a marketing point of view) is that most of us only want to deal with the one standard (405 Line) Therefore, the extra features will mean little to us.

Never the less, my hat comes off to Darryl
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Old 12th Nov 2004, 12:17 am   #5
Steve
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Default Re: Aurora converter - Review

I've just ordered an Aurora, so I'm awaiting its arrival with interest. In truth, had the Aurora not been available I would have happily plumped for the Domino.

But the main selling point, for me, was the fact that the Aurora is software based, which means the converter can be updated with new features, fairly easily. I guess I'm too used to buying equipment these days and then being able to apply fixes/enhancements by downloading images from the internet. Then again, most consumers buy equipment and never bother updating the firmware - so I guess I'm in the minority.

The ability to support other standards - particularily the low-def mechanical standards - is certainly an added bonus and I intend to play around with a homebrew televisor at some point.

But, horses for courses, and it's good to see that even in this limited marketplace we do have a choice. And that there isn't a clearcut winner. Well done to Malcolm and Darryl for having the dedication (and nouse) to produce their products.
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Old 12th Nov 2004, 9:04 am   #6
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Default Re: Aurora converter - Review

Quote:
the Aurora is software based, which means the converter can be updated with new features
Updating the Aurora firmware needs a PC and a simple adaptor attached to a printer port. The software to do the updates can be downloaded free of charge. If Aurora users are unable to do this themselves I have agreed with Darryl that I will offer a service within the EU. The cost will be just that of return postage which is £5.65 by Royal Mail Special Delivery in the UK. Possibly less since leaving out the power supply may bring the package under the 500g weight threshold.
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Old 12th Nov 2004, 4:52 pm   #7
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Default Re: Aurora converter - Review

Quote:
Updating the Aurora firmware needs a PC and a simple adaptor attached to a printer port.
Could you point me at a circuit diagram and the programming software for the adaptor?

Thanks.

Last edited by Paul Stenning; 29th Dec 2004 at 1:33 pm.
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Old 13th Nov 2004, 10:45 am   #8
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Default Re: Aurora converter - Review

Hi,
I read Darryl's website again.
He made a 16/9 letterbox to 4:3 zoom!
I am very impressed :.

Hope to hear from people watching it tomorrow
at Harpenden.
It is sad that there is no demotape available.
Please watch moving images like films and not test patterns and fotos. Are fast moving things jumping
or getting defocust?

Kind regards,
Darius
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Old 13th Nov 2004, 10:50 am   #9
ppppenguin
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Default Re: Aurora converter - Review

Aurora has no problems with moving pictures. No blurring, no jumping, no interlace problems. The problem with a demo tape is that it would probably degrade the picture quality when compared to the direct output from the converter.
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