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  #1  
  12-29-2009, 08:36 PM
 
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Capturing VHS tape to Multi-Media 8.8 PC capture program
12/29/09: Could not record 1949's Gun Crazy movie from VHS V-706 to 720X480 capture on old VPR XP PC (where I record everything else). I believe my VHS tape was recorded from a commercial VHS tape of the movie, rented at a video store. I recorded at SP speed.
Tried recording from Panasonic and Daewoo VCRs. Symptoms:
On both VCRs, video from composite AND S-Video was tearing badly at top, no matter how much tracking adjustments were made on VCRs. At the same time, the tape played fine through TV, via coax cable through channel 3 (also tried channel output from Panasonic and input to MM 8.8; no luck).
MM 8.8's channel 3 setting could NOT get a picture, either from the Gun Crazy or another VCR tape, OR from input of DirecTV, into the Panasonic and out to MM 8.8 via coax. Could not try the RCA VCR/DVD with time base corrector, because it's fried. When turning it on, it goes into RECORD mode and will not respond to any controls.
When trying from Daewoo VCR (which has no Macrovision), a second VHS tape played fine, into MM 8.8, via composite video, but Gun Crazy tape kept tearing at top (again, while simultaneously playing fine via coax into TV).
Playing tape through Macrovision decoder (Panasonic -> composite video -> Macrovision defeater -> composite video -> MM 8.8 did not help. I believe I would have made the original VHS to VHS copy through the Macrovision defeater, but I'm not sure, so perhaps the tearing originated from NOT playing it through the defeater.

Pardon if this subject already is an open thread, but I could not find it, nor could SEARCH. Thanks for any suggestions, Russell
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  #2  
  12-29-2009, 09:24 PM
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Tearing as you see here? (#3)
http://www.digitalfaq.com/guides/vid...tore-video.htm
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  #3  
  12-29-2009, 10:25 PM
 
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uh.....yeah, pretty much. I just deleted, in disgust, the short mpg2 I recorded of it. Could record and send an image of it. So weird that the coax version is fine, but the composite and S-Video versions have the extreme top tearing! I know that Macrovision could be enforced via S-Video, but I didn't know it could via composite. I wish my @#$% time base corrector worked! I don't need it to play a tape or DVD; just sit there and time base correct! Somehow, I think it would stop the tearing, but I don't know.
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  #4  
  12-29-2009, 11:55 PM
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I don't think it's Macrovision, it's probably just an unstable signal. VHS tapes are more or less terrible quality signals. Imperfect signals don't digitize well, reason you often need a TBC and/or frame sync between VCR and digital capture device (ATI AIW card, in your card).

What you had wasn't really a TBC anyway, though it did have some signal-fixing filters inside it. I've been discussing this at length at http://www.digitalfaq.com/forum/show...8710-1853.html recently.

I have to ask -- if the coax is fine (and assuming you're not wanting to spend $200+ on a new TBC or frame sync) -- why not just capture on ch3 of the ATI card coax input?

The only reliable way I've ever found to fix that flaw is using a Panasonic ES-series DVD recorder on passthrough -- name the ES10 model, though other report similar success on ES15 and ES20 models. You can get the ES15 on Amazon used for under $150 right now http://www.amazon.com/gp/redirect.ht...reative=390957 -- maybe a wise long-term investment? Brand new it was $250+ back in 2005.
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  #5  
  12-30-2009, 02:53 AM
 
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Maybe I didn't mention before, but I DID try to run the SAME coax, that played the movie fine, between the Panasonic VCR and the TV, from the Panasonic to the MM 8.8 coax input, then changed the MM 8.8 channel to 3. But, no matter WHAT the originating signal was (2 different VHS tapes and the DirecTV signal, run from the DirecTV receiver to the VCR, then to PC and MM 8.8), MM 8.8's Channel 3 was totally scrambled. I tried every variation MM 8.8's "video detail" settings offered (both NTSCs and even the PALs and SECAMs, just for grins), but nothing but scrambled/garbled video. I had never even tried the coax input before, instead using S-Video (or in some rare cases, composite video) for almost 6 years now.
There's a blurb in the MM 8.8 user manual about a requirement to initially set up the coax channels with their "Wizard" program, and I haven't tried that. Is is worth a shot? (Don't want to take a chance of screwing up the working S-Video and composite inputs!).
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  12-30-2009, 12:24 PM
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The ATI MMC "initialization wizard" just searches for new channels. Won't affect other inputs.

NOTE: It will also ask for your audio input, so don't mess that one up. It varies from AUX to LINE IN, depending on your system.
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  #7  
  12-30-2009, 02:32 PM
 
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Yeah, I thought it was a shot in the dark, but won't get near it now. Think I just need a good ol' TBC. Too bad I can't afford one at the moment. Is that Panasonic DVD recorder the cheapest and best bet?
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  #8  
  12-31-2009, 02:54 AM
 
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Panasonic ES-15 links that refer to it having a time base corrector. (I may have to give myself a late Christmas present...:>)
http://car-insurance-quote-in-ontari...rder-with.html (yes, on a car insurance quote link..weird..)
http://www.avland.co.uk/panasonic/dmres15/dmres15.htm (nice graphics, especially for a company that "will no longer deal with Panasonic"..........
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  #9  
  12-31-2009, 12:00 PM
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Read my recent comments here about TBCs: http://www.digitalfaq.com/forum/show...8710-1853.html
Especially refer to my second post there.

What's written on the box doesn't necessarily mean anything. Not all TBCs are created equal.

But the ES15 would take care of tearing, its frame sync filter work wonders on that errors. It does have some side effects (posterizing/banding, temporal over-processing), so only use it on tapes that really need tearing fixed or have really noisy signals. It's not an "image-invisible" type TBC, it does alter the signal visibly with it's powerful integrated DNR (excessively, at times). But you are "making it better" and that's the goal here, not making it perfect.
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  #10  
  12-31-2009, 01:00 PM
 
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Whew.... I read your TBC information; very interesting! (I DID check my toaster, and no TBC was found...) Will now scout my neighborhood for aluminum cans, so I can buy an ES15!
Russell
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  01-02-2010, 11:35 PM
 
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Well, I bought the ES15 for $139. Seller said it was used only once, and includes all cords, manual, etc. I'm eagerly awaiting it!
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  01-02-2010, 11:50 PM
 
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BTW.... I know you don't think the RCA DRC8295N DVD Recorder/VCR I had contained a true time base corrector, but I had an experience that proved to me that it has SOME kind of advanced restoration circuitry. I had a Beta tape of a Carl Perkins concert from HBO, and it looked horrible. The picture wasn't jerky, but the colors were washed out, wrong color, almost unwatchable. I connected the composite outputs of the Beta to the composite inputs of the RCA, then S-Video and composite audio of RCA to my PC capture program, and the resulting video was NORMAL looking. The colors were there, accurate tints and all. What did the RCA have to correct this?
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  01-03-2010, 02:31 AM
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Frame synchronizer, or a circuit that performs many of the same functions. (Or a TBC-like function, but still not a TBC. The frame-sync like circuit is more likely.) A number of recorders have them, thought it's far from all (maybe not even half).

My research on this topic is ongoing, and has been for a few years now.

Manufacturers are adverse to sharing information -- many times in an effort to hide the fact that "TBC" advertised on the box is partial or pure BS. Several have actually contacted me directly, but ran for the hills when questioned.
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  #14  
  01-03-2010, 03:04 AM
 
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"Thank You to lord...."
Man, that's almost religious.
Well, good info on frame synchronization. I was flabbergasted that I could connect a Beta VCR to the RCA (as I will to the ES15) and it produced a clean image.
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  01-20-2010, 12:54 AM
 
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Well, finally got around to connecting the "new" Panasonic DMR-ES15 last night, and true to your advice, it stabilized that VHS tape of 1949's Gun Crazy. I'm burning a DVD right now, of the 720X480 capture I created. So, thanks again! Now for the weird part. From composite video/audio (Panasonic VHS--> DMR-ES15--> RCA audio/video switcher--> PC with ATI MM8.8 capture, and playing a homemade VHS recording (NOT Gun Crazy, just something from cable or satellite), it works great. BUT, when I add S-Video to all those connections, not only is there no video on S-Video, but none on composite, either. I can only surmise that some insane copy protection circuit is stopping the video, but why? I need to experiment some more...run composite audio and ONLY an S-video from DMR-ES15 straight to the PC and see what that does, with a homemade DVD-R. Any ideas?
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  #16  
  01-21-2010, 04:10 PM
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You're having a problem somewhere in the hardware chain.

Try to isolate the issue. Start by removing unnecessary stuff. The RCA switcher, for example, is not suggested. Even in the chain, it reduces quality.

Some devices won't let you "crossover" from composite to s-video (or s-video to composite). In other words, s-video input would need to be s-video output, too. You can't just random change connection types in the chain. Not all devices have the proper filters to allow it, so they don't.

Your idea of experimenting is on the right line of thought.
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  01-22-2010, 12:50 AM
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kctexan, not trying to discourage you from your conversion project, but are you aware that Gun Crazy is available on dvd already?

single edition: http://tinyurl.com/ydbkgo9

box set: http://tinyurl.com/yasstge

much cheaper to buy the dvd than all that hardware.
and a better quality end product.
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  01-22-2010, 01:42 AM
 
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Yeah, I actually saw that, too, and bought Gun Crazy DVD for c. $6!; Thx. However, I still run into heavily encoded tapes sometimes, that I'm trying to get transferred to DVD, so I think the DMR-ES15 will help. It's also good for cleaning up Beta and VHS tapes I taped years ago. Bummer, though... my Sanyo Beta Hi-Fi seems to have died. I have 3 identical models. Maybe I could take all 3 into a competent electronics shop and have them mold 1 good one from them!
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  02-04-2010, 02:30 AM
 
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Well, I finally got my Beta VCR working again, so am devoting my life (or a month, at least) to capturing what programs I want from my 80 or so Beta tapes, and making DVDs from them (just capturing right now). The ES15 is doing a good job of processing the video. It also fixed that horrible Beta recording of the Carl Perkins concert, so that was good. Wonder, when I search this site for ES15, it can't find it? I have to bookmark this particular page to ever find it.
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  02-04-2010, 05:21 PM
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Awesome news on the Beta deck.

When I search "es15", this is the only thread that comes back. I'll do some checks and re-run the db maintenance, just in case. This site is, after all, still under construction. Don't you just love the temporary pink and purple placeholders?
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