Note: The images and information on this page
are free to use but
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These visual aids are designed to give you an idea of how bad NTSC can look. They're not perfect, they're simulated based on technical data, or rather, they're the best reproduction I could make of how a bad system mangles your video quality. The Street Fighter image was created by capturing the RGB output of a Sega Saturn, reducing it to 25 pixels across (but 100% vertically) from 300 pixels, enlarging it, and then using a horizontal 'wind' blur to simulate the horizontal-only blurring of the colour data. Thus the vertical resolution remained as high as a real NTSC broadcast would be, while the horizontal resolution simulates that of a cheap VCR. This doesn't accomodate other NTSC artifacts like hue (tint) imperfections or dot crawl.
The Ogre Battle image was made in a similar fashion, but was reduced to approximately one third of the horizontal resolution (100 from 300) and then cropped so you're left with what's shown see below. The end results are rather stunning in my opinion, the amount of reduction in the horizontal colourspace that can be applied while still maintaining an acceptable image quality is staggering.
Sampling the colour data at a resolution lower than the black and white
can result in a muddy image, as you can see above-left. More details...
Surprisingly you can get away with a lot of colour resolution reduction without
impacting the image quality significantly. See the brief TV History for details.