Should CRT shaders only be used with native res?

I tried to use the CRT-royale shader (NSCS S-Video preset) on Symphony of the Night, and the results at native res are significantly better. Is this how it’s supposed to be or can you do something to make the results at higher resolutions better? Here’s the comparison:

Native res



Anything greater than 320 x 240-ish doesn’t look very good IMHO.

I have heard people refer to it as 240fying a game.

There are methods to downscale in some of the shaders. I think Guest ADV can, and I know the Mega Bezel has downsample resolution multiplier settings for both horizontal and vertical axes.

If I increase internal res I usually accommodate with the multiplier.

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What do you mean with multiplier?

It is just the parameter name that @HyperspaceMadness uses in his Guest ADV implementation in the Mega Bezel.

In the Stand-alone Guest Advance it looks like this.


I think this is SOTN on PS1 correct?

If so, the answer is for a crt shader you probably want to use native res with no core upscaling, so the image coming from the core is the original res with corresponds to the scanlines.

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The Shaders of type Scanline and mask are designed for work with low resolution, native to the console. The resolution scaling has a better result in 3D graphics. For 2D Graphs, smoothing shaders can be used and random results.

If you want to improve 2D graphics by maintaining the original design, activating the SSAA in 8x of the core options, it may be the best option.

Yes. CRT shaders, especially Royale, output an image that takes advantage of your screen’s individual pixels (R, G and B sub-pixels, even.) This can only happen at the native resolution of your screen. If you use any other resolution, the effect gets ruined because the shader then tries to manipulate fake scaled pixels that don’t actually exist on your screen.

However, more real pixels are better. Royale for example looks OK-ish on 1080p screens, good on 1440p screens, and great on 4K screens. But running 4K on a 1080p screen through DSR/VSR downscaling will hurt rather than help.

But, this is also subjective. Some people actually prefer how downscaled CRT shaders look. Even though the actual CRT effect doesn’t look as intended by the shader, some people like it more than the native res look.

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You can try different CRT Mask Types and Sizes at 4K if you want things to look more like the native screenshot.

You can also give my preset pack a try. There are a variety of presets to choose from. One of them might give you the look that you’re aiming for!