The 15 Best Video Games Consoles of All Time

A friend of mine recently posted a link to this Guardian article about the best video game consoles ranked. This absolutely pile of trash disguised an article got me so outraged that it forced me to sit in front of my computer on a Saturday afternoon and write my first blog post in three years and write about the 15 best video games consoles of all time instead of helping my girlfriend paint the utility room.

Despite the fact that I have written the list in usual-listicle-reverse order ensuring there is zero suspense, here is my personal list of the greatest video consoles of all time which absolutely nobody asked for nor is interested in.

1) Nintendo Entertainment System/Famicom

Simple yet elegant. It was always a joy to drop to your knees & blow into that front loader

Whilst Atari were dumping copies of ET into the Nevada desert Nintendo were readying the system which would single-handedly save the gaming industry and sell over 61.91 million consoles worldwide, whilst amassing something like a 92% market share in the USA alone. The NES cemented Mario as the most recognised mascot in the world with Mario Bros 3 (and the Wizard movie, fuck yeah) surpassing even Micky Mouse.

The NES allowed developers to not only create new types of games but entire genres and in Japan was at the forefront of technology with the Famicom Disc System and the Famicom Network System for online access. Mario, Zelda, Megaman, Tetris, Metroid, Castlevania, Final Fantasy, Metal Gear. All these were all essentially born, or at the very least popularized on the NES. In my opinion, if it wasn’t for the NES the gaming industry would be at least 10 years behind where it is now.

2) Nintendo Game Boy

The green screen made it hard to see anything, but we didn’t care on a dimly lit road trip

The Game Boy sold over 118 million units worldwide with the lion’s share of them being in the 90’s. This little system absolutely dominated the handheld gaming space and utterly destroyed any competition who meekly stepped into the ring with the handheld heavyweight. This green screened gem brought the world Pokemon, which is the highest-grossing entertainment media franchise of all time with $90 billion (billion! With a B!) worth of sales. Surprisingly though, the 340 million units Pokemon has sold still pales in comparison to Mario’s 623.4 million units sold, and that data is from December 2017!

3) Super Nintendo Entertainment System/Super Famicom

If you think the North American version looked better then you are wrong!

The SNES took everything its older brother did and improved upon it. The slick machine allowed developers to truly bring their ideas to life in an era where CPU power was still very limited. The system had online functionality in Japan with the Satellaview (man, living in Japan in the 90’s would have been so freaking cool) and sold a total of 49.1 million copies worldwide.

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Sky Cable Philippines’ broken internet connection to Hong Kong and Singapore

I’ll open with this; chances are if you are reading this from a Sky Cable Philippines Broadband connection then it probably took well over a minute to load the page, that’s if the page even opened at all! The reason for this is that this website is hosted in the UK and to connect from your Sky Cable connection to this server you would have likely been routed via ae-13.r01.tkokhk01.hk.bb.gin.ntt.net (129.250.5.31) which amongst a growing number of other hops seems to grind to a halt. You would be forgiven in thinking “If this is happening outside of the Philippines then why are you singling out Sky Cable?”, the answer is because this ONLY happens with Sky Cable and not any other Philippines ISP, and this issue is starting to affect many other websites including Apple’s download servers, Amazon S3 Hosting, and even Sky Cable’s own website hosted in Singapore. All of these sites when served or routed through certain CDNs/Hops in Hong Kong or Singapore will not be able to serve you traffic above 20~100KB/sec, or in the case of Apple a slightly better max speed of about 300 KB/sec. That’ll take you well over 5 hours to download an iOS update!

Introduction

Let me go into more details, and let me get some things out the way first, because I am sure there will be things you are thinking before we get to the end of this post.

  1. My current line speed with Sky Cable in the Philippines is 55Mbps which works out at around 6.875MB/sec when downloading files from the internet. If you do not know the difference between Mbps and MB/Sec then please go read this.
  2. I also have a 5Mbps PLDT line which maxes out with a file download speed of about 600 KB/Sec (Just over half a megabyte a second).
  3. That means the PLDT line is 11 times slower than the Sky Cable line, yet as you will see later on, the PLDT line can reach download speeds on problematic servers well above what Sky Cable can.
  4. All my tests are fully repeatable at ANY time of the day, there is zero argument for network traffic being the cause of these issues.
  5. These issues have been confirmed by two other people using Sky Cable lines.
  6. I had been trying to get Sky Cable to acknowledge this issue for nearly a year without anyone understanding what I’m talking about.
  7. Finally a month ago I started speaking with one of the head engineers for Sky Broadband via Facebook who initially acknowledged and confirmed the issues. I’ll be referencing some of my conversations with him later in the post.
  8. NOTHING has been done to fix these issues and I am sure they are affecting the majority of Sky Broadband customers in some way, the only reason why this has gone unnoticed for so long is because the median speed of Philippines internet users is so slow that everyone is used to things taking an age to download.
  9. I’m certain that if this was a UK or USA ISP that it would be all over Social Media, and in the USA you’d probably see a class action lawsuit or something due to the lack of coming anywhere close to providing a service to these servers that could be deemed reasonable.
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How to get Lightberry to output 4K 60fps with HD Fury Linker

You may have read my previous guide on how to setup and configure the Lightberry HD and come across a line where I said…

If you are a 4K user, then you will want to purchase the 4K kit from Lightberry instead as it uses a different HDMI grabber. If you are thinking “Well, I might upgrade to 4K in the next five years and will buy the 4K kit for future proofing” then don’t bother, get the Lightberry HD kit. If you are unsure of what you need, get the Lightberry HD kit!

At the time I was using my Lightberry HD with a standard 1080p TV so there was no real need for me to push the Lightberry 4K as it is a little overly complicated and also limited in what it can handle. So fast forward to October of last year and I bought myself an nice shiny new LG 65″ E6 OLED which obviously supports 4K. Hmmm, now what am I to do with my Lightberry HD since i’ll now be feeding it some 4K content? Should I upgrade to the Lightberry 4K version?

Well unfortunately, upgrading to the 4K version wasn’t really an option and this is due to a limitation with the Lightberry 4K hardware. Basically the HDMI port on the 4K Grabber is limited to HMDI 1.4, this means that it can only support 4K at 30 frames per second (FPS). Now whilst this is entirely fine for most Movies and TV Shows which are 23-25 fps it is obviously an issue when it comes to PC Master Race 4k 60 FPS gaming, or future 4k 60fps video. After searching the internet I came across a device that should help me out. Enter the HD Fury 4K Linker.

Now what does this strange looking device actually do I hear you cry? Well my friend, the 4K linker is a pretty neat bit of kit and what it does is supposed to do is take a 4K feed and then allows you to down-sample that feed into 1080p or lower. Not only does it do this, but it also sends a fake signal to the rest of your HDMI equipment in your chain to pretend that it is a fully 4K capable device. This is important because of the way HDMi works, basically your highest resolution can only be as large as the lowest resolution in the chain. In English please? If you have a 1080p only device connected to any part of a HDMI chain the the max resolution to be passed along that chain is 1080p, so your lovely new 4k TV will not switch into 4k resolution!

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Lightberry HD Review

How we watch and use our TV has changed so much. I still remember the time of VHS and being grateful that I could even watch my favourite films at home. Now technology has advanced so far that watching a film at home can be more immersive than going to the cinema. Ambient light TVs are one of the latest technological advances for your television creating the illusion that the light from the screen carries on beyond the edges of the TV.  Lightberry HD allows any TV to have this technology using a HDMI cable.

Lightberry HD

Picture taken from Lightberry.eu

The first thing to say is that the Lightberry really enhances the viewing experience.  I ran the kit off of my Sony Bravia 55” TV and was amazed at the results. It is a really immersive way to watch films adding extra atmosphere. I tried the kit out with several genres of films and it worked well for all of them. I suggest the first film you try it out on is an effects heavy film such as Star War as you really notice the difference. I also tried the Lightberry HD out with my PlayStation 4 and it was just as good if not better than the films. I think this is because games have less cut scenes so the changing light seemed a lot smoother.

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