View Full Version : The official "I still use VHS" thread


classictv80s
03-27-2010, 07:42 AM
Does anyone here still use the VHS format? What kind of VHS VCRs do you all have or want to have? How many VHS tapes do you have in your library? Anyone still use VHS to record?

radiotvnut
03-27-2010, 11:58 AM
I still use VHS to record older shown on RTN that I may want to watch again. My Mother fails to see why I want to record those older shows; but, I know there will come a time when they will no longer be on regular TV. I will continue to use VHS as long as I have a working VCR and can get tapes.

My main VCR is nothing special - a late '90's BPC Sharp four head hi-fi stereo that I bought from a neighbor. It seems to do fine for what I need.

I do have an '86 entry level GE (Panasonic built) and an '83'ish Panasonic top loader. Both work; but, could stand a head cleaning and some new rubber parts. I also have an early '80's Hitachi top loader with the old style mechanical function keys. That one is non functional due to, I suspect, stretched/broken belts.

I'm always on the lookout for QUALITY VCR'S; but, all I've been finding here lately is modern Funai crap that weighs all of 1/2 lb.

Electrohome
03-27-2010, 12:42 PM
Yes, I still use my good ol' VHS to watch my older VHS tapes from my collection of older TV broadcasts w/commercials and when transferring these tapes to DVD as well for trades. I'm really beginning to miss VHS a lot as I grew up with VHS. It's just finding those good qaulity blank VHS tapes I can use to record my programs when I do see something good which is not very often anymore. Also, that Funai stuff is "Made In China" thus explaining the such poor qaulity of Funai products.

radiotvnut
03-27-2010, 01:06 PM
I can remember when we got our first VCR, an '86 Magnavox rebadged Panasonic. It was a basic two head model with the thumbwheel varactor tuning presets. I was on cloud nine b/c I could finally record "MacGyver" and the Saturday morning cartoons that I liked at the time. Back then, VCR's were the cool thing to have. Now, my flea market friend is lucky to get $10 for a good used one.

Besides tapes of programs recorded off of regular TV, I have a ton of home videos that were made when we got a camcorder in '89. Also a Magnavox and I still have it. My Mother thought we couldn't go anywhere without taking the camcorder.

Many of those tapes are 20-25 years old and still play fine. I wonder if DVD's will hold up that long.

Dude111
03-27-2010, 05:22 PM
I love VHS!!

I prefer watching GOOD MOVIES in ANALOGUE on my VHS tapes :)

colortrakker
03-27-2010, 09:35 PM
Just watched some VHS a few nights ago. My Sony monitor has 2 decks on it now: a Panasonic AG-1950 pro-fesh VHS machine and a 1995 JVC HR-S5200U Super VHS deck. I may swap the JVC for my Sony SuperBeta eventually, but no rush since good VHS is so much easier to find. 'Fact, I just got a Crash Test Dummies video today: Symptomology Of A Rock Band. Lots of good musical finds on VHS.

jedo1507r
03-28-2010, 10:07 AM
I still use a portable Sharp VC-363, as it moved with me to the dorm for watching educational/documentary videos from the school's library that aren't on DVD, and that's hooked up to a TV to VGA tuner/AV box connected to a 19-inch ViewSonic monitor (curb find). The machine's form factor does not take up much space and unlike my attention span of the videos, the 363 never gives up.

Sadly, a friend on campus has a 19-inch Funai VHS combo with well-known mecha problems, but surprisingly has not held his TV viewing hostage. I cringe when I see those, as I've worked on a few before. :yuck:

At home though, I have a few machines (NV-SJ200, VT-33, VT-3, SLV-M11HF, HR-783U) and 30+ tapes of mostly show recordings from the early-2000s.

Username1
03-28-2010, 02:51 PM
I started recording tons of stuff on vhs. Get the used tapes off ebay for about 50 to 60 cents a tape. And I got a buncha used S-VHS machines and use them. Since now we got digital tv the picture on the fewer channels we now get are nice and clear. I tape Nature on pbs, and other stuff. S-VHS in great for editing too. I think now I got about 300 tapes. And original movie tapes from garage sales can be had for one of two dollars. I know people who have said they got rid of all their vhs and got all their movied in DVD. And the same people got rid of their records and tapes to get CD's. I can't see it. Why rebuy stuff like that? I have some vhs movies I watch 100 times or more and they still look like the first watching......

AUdubon5425
03-28-2010, 03:19 PM
I regularly taped old movies off of AMC and Columbo from 1992-97 on a two-head Magnavox. Never did much recording after that - only historical programs of local interest. Sadly, many of my tapes have white powdery mold (I guess) and have degraded from two years of storage in a dry but non-climate controlled shed. I bought a DVD recorder to save what I couldn't replace off of the VHS tapes.

But we still record a program on tape once in a while, usually something my wife wants to watch but won't be home for. We may buy 2-4 blanks a year. My wife also has an extensive collection of Disney movies and such on VHS.

Our "daily driver" is a Philips stereo 4-head from around '99. It makes some noise rewinding, so we picked up a couple of old rewinders from a thrift store. I have a Canon VCR that needs belts as a back-up, along with a mid-80's top-loading Quasar.

Interestingly, I never have recorded an on-air program to DVD, although I'm pretty sure there ought to be a timer on the thing (no tuner though!)

Username1
03-28-2010, 03:35 PM
I got a box of older tapes off ebay with the white mold, no smell just powder looking stuff. I put the tape into the machine rewind it once at fast speed and the stuff is gone, no effect on the tape, and the mold was only on the tape edge. Here PBS channel 13 from NYC has a program on Sat evenings called Reel13 its on the internet too, they run classic movies a short, and then an indie. Makes for a great evening and I tape them all.

electroking
03-28-2010, 09:43 PM
I got a box of older tapes off ebay with the white mold, no smell just powder looking stuff. I put the tape into the machine rewind it once at fast speed and the stuff is gone, no effect on the tape, and the mold was only on the tape edge. Here PBS channel 13 from NYC has a program on Sat evenings called Reel13 its on the internet too, they run classic movies a short, and then an indie. Makes for a great evening and I tape them all.

Aren't you worried the machine will now be contaminated, and will transfer
the mold to other tapes you might be playing? Just an idea.

I tape shows off my analog cable feed for later viewing, several hours
a week, using a JVC model HR-A591U.

Dude111
03-29-2010, 08:30 PM
Yes but doing that isnt any better nowadays! (Recording off ANALOGUE cable feed) because the stuff THEY ARE SENDING IS SENT IN DIGI (Just converted to ANALOGUE for the ANA tier so its not much better unfortunetly)

An in the 80s and before,IT WAS MUCH MORE "ANALOGUE" RECORDING OFF TV! (Cable,etc)

Jeffhs
03-30-2010, 01:18 PM
I can remember when we got our first VCR, an '86 Magnavox rebadged Panasonic. It was a basic two head model with the thumbwheel varactor tuning presets. I was on cloud nine b/c I could finally record "MacGyver" and the Saturday morning cartoons that I liked at the time. Back then, VCR's were the cool thing to have. Now, my flea market friend is lucky to get $10 for a good used one.

Besides tapes of programs recorded off of regular TV, I have a ton of home videos that were made when we got a camcorder in '89. Also a Magnavox and I still have it. My Mother thought we couldn't go anywhere without taking the camcorder.

Many of those tapes are 20-25 years old and still play fine. I wonder if DVD's will hold up that long.

I have a rack full of 25-year-old VHS tapes as well; mostly old TV series, a few movies, and several commercially-recorded tapes. All still play as well as when they were new, with no white mold. :thmbsp: I never had that problem with any VHS tape I have ever owned or currently own, either here in my apartment or at my previous residence. Some of you who have had the problem must have stored your tapes in a high-humidity environment. However, it's a good thing that the mold does not affect the tapes. Most of my VHS tapes are irreplaceable, as they have old TV series that didn't last long enough to be released on DVD. If I can find or borrow a DVD recorder some day, I'd like to transfer those old tapes to DVD.

My current VCR is a Panasonic PV-4022 from 2002. It replaced another Panny that ate a tape; I had just taped a movie and was never able to watch it, as the tape jammed in the mechanism. :no: I literally had to wreck the VCR to get it out. Hated to lose that VCR, as it had VCR Plus+ and a beautiful picture; however, I saved the remote, which I found out will work with my PV-4022. I think my VCR has the thick toothed drive belt between the motor and the transport mechanism, which probably explains why this machine has lasted as long as it has without problems. I had a GE-branded Panasonic VCR, my first VCR, in 1984; it lasted six years and worked well, until the heads wore out. When I found out, at a local TV repair shop, that a new head drum would cost $250, I forgot about having the recorder repaired and bought an Emerson VCR shortly afterward. That machine lasted a few years (don't quite remember how many) and was eventually replaced, IIRC, by a Magnavox VCR. I got the latter in the early nineties, so I don't know if it was actually a rebadged Funai (!) VCR or if it was made by some other offshore entity. The Maggie VCR lasted quite a while (probably as long as my Panny has so far), but then, shortly after I moved here in the late 1990s (1999), the machine first stopped recording, then the playback got flaky and eventually stopped. At this point, knowing that the Maggie VCR wasn't worth repairing (I don't remember how much I paid for it when I bought it, but it couldn't have been more than $120), I threw in the towel and bought my first Panasonic. That machine lasted about two or three years (! ! ! -- see above for the story), then was replaced by my present Panny PV4022. That machine is now seven years old and still works as well as it worked the day I bought it.

I also have several DVDs and box sets, now at least three years old, that still play well in my Memorex DVD player. Unless one stores DVDs in an excessively humid or dusty environment, however, I cannot see how DVDs can wear out if they are not played often, since they are not magnetic media. After all, this is why many folks transfer VHS video tapes to DVDs--so as to preserve the programs on the tapes, since VHS videocassettes can and do jam and wear out over time, whereas DVDs have no moving parts whatsoever. Moreover, DVD players have error-detection systems that will compensate for slight scratches on the surfaces of DVDs, so these discs should last quite a while -- a lot longer than VHS tapes.

It will be interesting to find out, however, how many DVDs bought new this year are still playing well, say five or ten years from now. Of course, if anyone needs to replace DVDs these days or are in the market for new discs, most programs, movies and so on are now on Blu-ray discs -- which will not play in standard DVD players; however, ironically, the reverse is absolutely true -- standard DVDs will play in Blu-ray players. Is this a marketing ploy to get people to buy new Blu-ray players, even if their old standard DVD player is working well? :scratch2:

radiotvnut
03-30-2010, 03:25 PM
The tapes that remained in the house look as good as they did when new. There were a few tapes that, somehow or another, made their way to the basement and they developed that white mold. I didn't even try to save them as I was afraid they might gunk up my machine.

jstout66
04-01-2010, 07:52 AM
I still do, and joke that the show "Hoarders" will come when it comes to the point I'm buried under VHS tapes. I still have VCR's hooked to all my main TV's. A Sony SLV-690HF is in L/R. A Sony SLV-N71 is in B/R, and I have a Toshiba VHS/DVD Combo in my "office" room. The Sony's are fine. The Toshiba will play and record ANY tape, but if I take a tape over to a friends, the tapes recorded on it, does NOT play well in other machines. Also, if it's run over 3 hours, the motor starts getting weird.

I have machines horded in the basement in case my main ones go out. I'll still pick some up at thrift stores as long as they are Stereo and come with the original remote. I have some higer end Panasonics and I noticed that they do not play ANY tapes well recorded on other machines. Doesn't matter what model, they all do that, so I don't use them. I keep my eye out for Sony or RCA decks, as they seem to be the best. I still have the first VCR I bought. A 2 head mono RCA purchased in 92 for $249.00. It still works, but you always had to insert the tape "just right" from day 1.
I'll have to admit I tape less and less now. I just got DVR, and man.... MUCH easier.
Blank tapes are getting more expensive, and seem to be of an inferior quality.
I have hundreds of movies and series recorded, so will probably never be without a VCR.

OvenMaster
04-01-2010, 02:22 PM
Yup. I use VHS daily to tape shows for the family. I have my DTV converter connected to the line inputs, and I am presently putting the right cables and adapters together to try to play S-VHS video from my computer and have it recorded on the VCR.

rpm1200
04-02-2010, 11:06 AM
http://www.videokarma.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=166666&stc=1&thumb=1&d=1269787681 (http://www.videokarma.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=166666&d=1269787681)

Is that a Whirlpool Gold Series laptop in the foreground? I knew Westinghouse was getting into computer equipment, maybe Frigidaire and Kitchen-Aid will be next!

(j/k!!! I put a Sony badge on my Heath/Zenith DMM and occasionally get questions about it!)

Nice Sharp, I always liked that variety of portable deck with the vertical cassette layout.

rpm1200
04-02-2010, 11:17 AM
Oh yeah, VCRs.... I used to have a house full of them. For many years I amassed a full Simpsons collection, now the DVD sets are coming out so I don't need the VHS tapes except for the newer seasons. I'll keep the first/second season tapes with vintage ads.

There's a VCR hooked up to my living room, bedroom and basement systems. All hi-fi and late 90s vintage. The basement has a Sharp, Sonys in the other two rooms. The kids use the living room Sony a lot, the other two are rarely used. I recorded much of my VHS programming to DVDs using an awful Polaroid DVD/HDD recorder.

I also used to use hi-fi decks for live audio recording. Nowadays it's easier to use a laptop but 10+ years ago that was not practical, and you could get 6-8 hours of good quality sound on a tape.

I do have a soft spot for cheesy 80s digital video effects. There was a brief fad of including those effects in high-end VCRs. I have a broken Toshiba and Sears and a working Sharp that have picture-in-picture, mosaic, solarization, freeze-frame, etc. I'll hang onto those decks.

jedo1507r
04-02-2010, 11:39 AM
Is that a Whirlpool Gold Series laptop in the foreground? I knew Westinghouse was getting into computer equipment, maybe Frigidaire and Kitchen-Aid will be next!

(j/k!!! I put a Sony badge on my Heath/Zenith DMM and occasionally get questions about it!)

Nice Sharp, I always liked that variety of portable deck with the vertical cassette layout.

LOL, I had people ask me how old my computer was as it was so thick, even though it was made in 2005. One day, I put the old Whirlpool badge on the Panasonic CF-29 as a gag, as the badge was lying around when my parents had disposed of the refrigerator (after saving quite a few quality parts from it). :D Oddly, I do leave my computer on like an appliance, clocked at 12k hours according to the BIOS and no failures--yet. :banana:

Thanks, the Sharp has been my favorite despite the immensely dull videos I have played with it.

Dennman6
04-02-2010, 08:13 PM
I have NEVER given up on VHS taping! I just don't trust recordable DVD-Rs to still function after 27 years, as my 3 oldest VHS tapes still do(Maxell). Of course I have a pair of Pioneer DVD recorders for transfers, & I always tell friends who want me to do transfers to hold onto your original tapes, "just in case". I became a tape-a-holic in 1984, using an RCA VJP-900(convertible), which I still have. Then came a VKP-925 in 1985, still got it. Got a stereo hi-fi RCA VLP-950HF in 1986. This one could PLAY hi-fi tapes, or record in stereo thru the aux in jacks but had a MONO tuner in it. Great machine, did double duty taping off cable & for family home videos using my 1984 RCA Small Wonder-yep, still got it.

I have 3 Mitsubishi hi-fi VCRS here, 2001-2004 models. In between these "eras" I had a 1994 Panasonic, which at 4 years old wouldn't load tapes & would just quit & turn off. Then in 1995 I got a pair of RCA 603HFs, really good hi-fi VCRs. Gave one to a friend, kept the other. Also got a nice JVC that year, still tapes off of TCM for me every week:) I liked them better than the competition as just by looking inside them you can see a much larger loading motor to pull the VHS tape into it-that's gotta be a good sign.

I am a vintage movie buff, & will BUY DVDs(pressed) without hesitation, but for my own archive(1,000 tapes plus) I will use VHS tape til good ones are no longer made. And stay away from TDK VHS tapes, now made in China. ALL 4 of the ones I tried to use for the Obama inauguration clogged heads on 3 machines! Sony, Fuji, & Maxell still seem good-made in either Mexico or Korea. And if you run out of new, buy old stock from the Goodwill, still wrapped! I found 35 unwrapped Scotch-3M Pro VHS blanks at a buck a piece last year. You bet I bought 'em all up at once!

radiotvnut
04-03-2010, 10:33 AM
The question is: How long will we be able to buy good quality VHS tapes at retail stores? Around here, wal-mart and rat shack are the only two places that I've found that still stock VHS tapes. IIRC, RS has TDK and WM has Sony. WM used to carry Durabrand, as well; but, I think they are down to Sony now.

And, none of the newer tapes feel as heavy as the old ones did.

Back in the '80's and '90's, I could pick up tapes at just about any store in town. Back then, I mainly used Scotch, Maxell, TDK, BASF, Fuji, and Memorex. I remember the Memorex tapes coming in hard plastic storage cases.

It probably won't be too much longer before we are forced to either buy NOS tapes from wherever we can find them or buy used tapes and record over them.

Like has already been said, I don't put a lot of trust in DVD's lasting for 20+ years like my VHS tapes.

Username1
04-04-2010, 03:25 AM
While I quit buying new tapes, I tend to judge quality by the picture stability on my worse machine at the slower speed. For that I found that Fujifilm HQ tapes still available believe it or not at Hanaford supermarket for $7.99 t-160 3 pack. Target has Sont HQ T-160 8 pack for $18.00 and Sont T-120 4 pack for $6.99 I also found that lots of people who sell lots (Lots as in 10, 20, 30 tapes) of tapes on ebay have for the most part only used them once or twice, are pretty good quality and even the old off brand tapes work very well. I guess Sony and Fuji either had good quality, or were manufacturers for other branded tapes, and these two actually "make" the stuff.??? Anyway those two brands seem to be in most stores. Sears has some off brand I don't remember the name. Iff you look around near the bottom of the shelf between the moth balls and esso motor oil you can still find VHS tapes in yer town. Funny thing also seems the really old stuff came in so many different lengths. I got 100 minute, 130 minute, 145 minute, 170, 180, I even got a buncha MGM Studio Grade T-120's Neato package, nothing special but they do weigh a bunch more than the FUji's and Sony's. And if you type in blank VHS tapes into Google there are lots of mail order places to get them at less than walmart prices for new ones. Buy.com and others.

Ed in Tx
04-04-2010, 08:53 AM
While I quit buying new tapes, I tend to judge quality by the picture stability on my worse machine at the slower speed. For that I found that Fujifilm HQ tapes still available believe it or not at Hanaford supermarket for $7.99 t-160 3 pack. Target has Sont HQ T-160 8 pack for $18.00 ...
Personally I would avoid T160-T180 etc tapes unless you really need the extended time. The tape is thinner and that includes a thinner oxide coating, which yields less of the FM-RF signal (b&w or luminance part at 3.4-4.4mHz on standard VHS) from the tape picked up by the heads and on to the head amp circuit. Can be several dB lower, which makes for a noisier picture. Also can reveal minor tape path or skewing problems that a T120 tape works fine with. More dropouts in the video and hi-fi audio too. Did a lot of testing on various brands of tapes when I was in the VCR repair biz for 25+ years. My favorite brand of tape is/was Fuji. Fuji supplied OEM tapes for JVC the "Inventor of VHS".

Username1
04-04-2010, 02:29 PM
Fuji ROCKS! and the JVC s-VHS ET machines have about 1/4" wider video bandwidth for recording than standard VHS and the "ET" means you can use non S-VHS tapes in the unit and get almost all of the advantages of the "S", but on a regular tape. We have only one plane jane Magnavox Hi-Fi plastic VCR that comes close to the picture quality of our JVC S-VHS ET machines. And a plus to those JVC S-VHS machines is that they seem to have a super ultra supreme tracking system that we can play tapes recorded on any of our VCR's on, and they are stable and free of lines etc. Until the S-Vhs we had a Magnavox, Bon-Sonic, and another Philips/Magnavox. Each had really good pictures at slow speed, but the tape had to be played only on the machine it was recorded on. I think the Bon-Sonic, which has a really good picture, when you open the hood to do a tune up you can see its only got 2 heads but the front cover says 4 head. But to make up for it, the machine has a built in tape head cleaner and the front cover, and instruction manual don't say anything about it. Anyway all these plastic vcr's all come from the same automated factory just a different assembly line. Good for $7.00 at garage sales. I'm always a sucker for a $7.00 garage sale vcr. The squirrel finds 'em for me early in the morning so I don't have to drive around all day following signs.

NowhereMan 1966
04-04-2010, 03:03 PM
I still use VHS. We have a Toshiba combo from 2003, the DVD does not work but the VHS tape does, I had to fix it once though. It is on the main set, the 1982 Zenith. For DVD's, my friend gave me a Blu-Ray player, I hook it into the Line 2 inputs of the Toshiba combo. I have a Maggie VHS/DVD combo in my room and I have an old Samsung VCR, an old RCA VCR and a Hatachi from 1986.

Dave A
04-04-2010, 09:45 PM
I have had so many DVD recorders die on me, I may go back to my JVC SR-V10U decks. They are the best I have ever seen for playback with it's TBC/DNR playback.

And I still have one of the digital decks RPM1200 describes and still working. It is a RCA with freeze/posterization, etc. It cost me a bundle in the late 80's.

zenith2134
04-06-2010, 10:30 PM
2 Sony decks here. One is circa 1994, recall it being very high end for it's time 4 head hi-fi stereo 'flying erase-head' for editing and APC button.

Other is a 1999-ish Malaysian 4 head hi-fi stereo... both work well.

Robert Grant
04-08-2010, 10:55 PM
Has anyone out here noticed that the VCR is alive and well. I see most mass-retail stores these days still offer new VCRs from several brands. Sure, they are bundled with DVD players, and they no longer have tuners (a cheap way of dealing with the mandate that devices with tuners be digital-ready), but the VCR lives!

OvenMaster
04-08-2010, 11:50 PM
Has anyone out here noticed that the VCR is alive and well. I see most mass-retail stores these days still offer new VCRs from several brands. Sure, they are bundled with DVD players, and they no longer have tuners (a cheap way of dealing with the mandate that devices with tuners be digital-ready), but the VCR lives!
What stores offer these combo machines? In my area, the only place that still offers any VHS/DVD units is Costco, and most are VHS-playback only, no recording. Even Wal-Mart offers only DVD players in my area.

Username1
04-10-2010, 08:13 AM
I was thinking about Robert's comment above and VCRs being alive and well but stand alons that record not for sale anymore. But I remember seeing them on ebay, I guess as reconditioned factory returns.... Don't remember. But I did find one like the Magnavox, Philips that I have.
http://cgi.ebay.com/MAGNAVOX-4-head-hi-fi-vhs-VCR-w-REMOTE-MANUAL-NEW_W0QQitemZ230458691803QQcmdZViewItemQQptZVCRs?h ash=item35a86890db
This is the one unit I have that comes very close to matching the picture performance
of my S-VHS machines with ET. Same cabinet, and remote. I guess the 19Micron head
gap makes for a pretty nice performance improvement.

Dude111
04-27-2010, 01:08 PM
Yesterday i saw an episode of "ALL MY CHILDREN" that my mom used to watch in the 80s (Part of it is still @ the end of one of my VHS tapes that i now have)

I tell you,THE CLEAR 0db ANALOGUE SIGNAL IS BEAUTIFUL!!

I rekcon buying a VHS tape with prerecorded content from the store IS THE CLOSEST TO FULL ANALOGUE you could get these days!

colorfixer
04-28-2010, 11:21 PM
I find that the biggest issue with anything mechanical is the belts and idler tires that are becoming unobtanium. My Panasonic NV-G50 has a great picture, if I could only get an idler tire for it.

Don't forget that laserdisc still offers an analog picture as well ;)

Jeffhs
04-29-2010, 06:59 PM
These formats may still produce excellent pictures, comparable to analog TV. However, it is next to impossible to find prerecorded VHS videos (except on the used market; look on eBay or CL) these days -- the same goes for laser discs. LD was popular 25+ years ago, with several major US manufacturers, RCA among them, marketing players that hooked up to standard TVs the same as a VCR. These were the late '70s-'80s forerunners of today's DVDs, but the picture quality was almost certainly nowhere near that of today's digital media; it didn't have to be, as digital and high-definition TV hadn't been thought of yet in this country. Consider as well the fact that laser discs were about the size of an LP phonograph record and could only hold one movie at a time, whereas today it is possible to fit an entire season of a TV series on one DVD.

The cost of laser discs was a factor as well. Whereas today DVDs can be obtained in department stores for dirt-cheap prices in many cases (I have a DVD with 1970s police programs like Charlie's Angels, et al. that I purchased for $3 at Big Lots a couple years ago) and are even available for rent from Netflix, Blockbuster Video and even machines in some stores, new laser discs often went for $10 or more apiece in their heyday.

If laser discs are available used, however, I would think they would sell for a fraction of that, as hardly anyone uses them anymore. If anyone here has (or knows someone who has) a laser disc player or VCR and is looking for prerecorded discs or VHS tapes, the only place, again, to find such is probably on eBay or perhaps at garage/yard/moving sales.

Jeffhs
04-29-2010, 07:08 PM
I find that the biggest issue with anything mechanical is the belts and idler tires that are becoming unobtanium. My Panasonic NV-G50 has a great picture, if I could only get an idler tire for it.

Don't forget that laserdisc still offers an analog picture as well ;)

The "unobtanium" nature of parts for older VCRs is why so many of them show up on eBay or CL, or even in the trash (!), these days. As for the current crop of DVD/VHS players, I'd say forget trying to repair them after the warranty expires, the reason being that they are built cheaply to sell cheaply -- to have one of these looked at in a repair station is likely to cost more than the owner originally paid for it or than the machine is worth, and this is before any work is ever done on the unit.

holmesuser01
05-08-2010, 09:10 PM
I got a Sony SLV-900HF VHS machine today at the thrift store for $3. It has a flying erase head. The only thing wrong was the arm that pulls the tape out of the cassette and guides it behind the pinch roller was sticking and caused the tape to jam up when you eject the tape. One drop of oil, and about an hour of sitting there cured it.

This is the 7th Sony from around 1990 or so that had this exact problem that has come across my workbench.

The machine records and plays fine as found. I'm going to use it as a recording dubber. I'm going to be transferring a load of 3/4" UMatic cassettes, and this machine has a flying erase head, so, I can make clean edits between tape reels.

I was explaining to a friend yesterday that I couldn't dub an old home video of his until I found a decent machine to use. I usually skip the VHS machines at the stores, but today I saw this one. Cleaned up good, too!!

I've attached a pic I found on the net. Mine looks as good as this, but has no remote, yet.

jln1966
05-09-2010, 09:13 AM
I have picked up 4 vcrs in the last month. The first is a Zenith from around 1990 for 2.00 at an auction. I havent tried it yet. It has the book and remote. I got 2 from a woman who was putting them out for the trash. One is a Hitachi and the other is a Daiwoo AC/DC player only. She said they didnt work but I tried them and both work. No remotes though. The last one is a Goldstar AC/DC player only from a thrift. They had 15.00 on it but it was half price day so I got it for 7.50. It has the remote and looks and works like new. I get lots of tapes at thrifts and yards sales. I just got a box of 26 mainly older movies for 10.00. I still record daily on VHS.
John

Dude111
05-10-2010, 12:29 AM
Its sad seeing people throw out these wonderful units!!

I prefer the picture/sound quality of ANALOGUE over anything digital!!


Good luck on all your new VCRs buddy :)

Barry777
06-19-2010, 08:16 AM
I repair professional studio VHS VCR's as a hobby, and have the following JVC machines: (3) BR-S822U, (2) BR-S500U, (2) BR-S800U and (3) of the BR-7000 series. All fantastic, stable machines with great features and performance once they are serviced.

Of course, I also have a full-blown VCR repair bench including (4) Sencore VC93 All Format VCR Analyzers, (2) Sencore VA62 Video Analyzers, (1) Sencore VA48 Video Analyzer, (1) Sigma Electronics TSG375 NTSC Video Generator, (1) Sony 13" Video Monitor, (1) Commodore Video Monitor (don't laugh, it still looks and works great!), (2) Tektronix Oscilloscopes, (1) HP Scope, (1) Tektronix 1760 Vectorscope, (10) Tentel gauges, plus signal generators, (2) Editing Controllers, many frequency counters, multimeters, alignment and torque meter tapes, blah blah blah. All stuff I could never afford when I repaired VCR's back in the 80's.

I love JVC machines, and also have a Sony SLO-1800 Professional Beta machine I just finished tuning up. I may have more Beta tapes than VHS, around 300 - haven't finished counting the VHS movies. I also have (2) Alesis ADAT (digital audio) 8 track recording decks which use Sharp VCR mechanisms for the tape transport. Most professional VCR's are all direct drive, with no belts, tires or idlers to wear out (except a loading belt here and there). I use rewinders to save wear on the motors.

For viewing, I have a Toshiba 50" Projection TV, a Panasonic 47" Projection TV and a Sony Bravia 40" LCD TV. Each room has a big screen TV, VHS, Beta and DVD players, with my main playroom also having a Pioneer VP-1000 Laser Disc Player. I guess you could say I'm a heavy video enthusiast!

After seeing "disc error" one time too many, I decided to go back to VHS, Beta and Laser Disc and stay there. I will only purchase a DVD if the content is not available in any other format, and I immediately make a VHS copy. As mentioned before in this thread, you can get VHS movies extremely cheap, and even free if you hit up the right DVD enthusiast or yard sale. You can find belts, tires and other scattered VCR parts at www.studiosoundelectronics.com

All these morons get rid of their VHS in order to spend big bucks on crap that will only work for a few years, and marginally at that. Fine with me!

Ed in Tx
06-19-2010, 09:22 AM
I repair professional studio VHS VCR's as a hobby..

Welcome! Repairing "as a hobby" is right. I repaired VCRs for a living including warranty for JVC consumer and pro lines for about 25 years. The '80s and '90s were very good indeed. Then they stopped coming in, and I retired. Good timing. Before that I worked for Pioneer, toward the end of my stint there worked on many of those VP-1000s. Do you have the CX noise reduction box for yours? The VP-1000s aren't the greatest for CLV playback as they typically exhibited some adjacent track crosstalk in the video. You probably have one of the last remaining functioning VP-1000s! I have a friend that has one that works too but he hasn't used it in years.

Barry777
06-19-2010, 03:31 PM
Hi Ed,

I don't have the CX box for the VP-1000. I found the unit at the Goodwill for $9.99 and was always a little curious about them, so I brought it home. To my surprise and pleasure, it worked great for the most part. A few days later, there was a box of about 50 discs at that same Goodwill, so I nabbed them up as well. After some obsessing on eBay, I'm now up to around 100 discs and will probably stop there.

It falters on a few discs towards the end, and not just the Discovisions which I hear had this problem. But it plays most discs flawlessly from start to finish. I know a guy who has the service manual and some of the jigs and gauges for it, but I'm not enough of a LD enthusiast to make the investment.

I was a little surprised that the programming on any given side ends without notice or warning, and simply starts again if you don't flip the disc over. And I never mess with the numeric keypad or explore any of the features, so I can't be sure the unit is fully functional - but it's a pretty cool thing to play around with. I do notice some snow and video noise on some discs, but not enough to really bother me.

If you don't mind, I might be picking your brain from time to time about these great JVC pro machines. My immediate question is whether they have some sort of circuit to ignore the anti-copy signal, as I don't seem to have any trouble at all copying movies from - well, anything! My uneducated guess is that they had to duplicate movies that were manufactured with the anti-copy signals, and thus needed to somehow bypass the protection.

Most of my other questions deal with using SMPTE time code, as there doesn't seem to be an introductory tutorial on its basic use. I'd like to sync 2 or more recording VCR's with Alesis ADAT machines so I can record local bands and myself playing, and have 16 tracks of audio - or 20+ tracks if you count the normal and Hi-Fi audio functions in the VCR's. I understand you need an Alesis BRC to translate the time code between the ADAT's and VCR's, but haven't gotten quite that far yet.

I do have 2 JVC editing controllers - the GR-800U and 860U, but I don't think they are of any use as far as the ADAT machines go. I'll do as much studying as possible before I bug you about the technical end of it. Nothing to bug you about on the VCR's, as I was able to get them all working with fairly simple mechanical fixes, and was able to confirm a bad video head (or something on the flying head preamp board) using a substitution signal from a VC93. Funny that I have pretty good head protrusion on the drum and no visible broken ferrite chunks, so possibly the preamp - but that's as far as I felt like going that day.

Very thankfully, generic pinch rollers are still available for the BR-S822U's and my S500's and S800's which appear to all use the same roller assembly. I'm curious about your warranty work on these - were there any certain common failures you had to fix on many machines? I work in Avionics these days, and most of our "warranty work" is the pilot not knowing how to use the equipment, or something else in the aircraft malfunctioning and making it look like the culprit. Or more likely, the designers trying to pack more and more performance into smaller boxes, and the fact that it's a harsher electronic environment behind the yoke than in the circuit simulation software!

Ed in Tx
06-19-2010, 04:21 PM
Hi Ed,

I don't have the CX box for the VP-1000. I found the unit at the Goodwill for $9.99 and was always a little curious about them, so I brought it home. To my surprise and pleasure, it worked great for the most part.


I know a guy who has the service manual and some of the jigs and gauges for it, but I'm not enough of a LD enthusiast to make the investment.



I do notice some snow and video noise on some discs, but not enough to really bother me.

If you don't mind, I might be picking your brain from time to time about these great JVC pro machines. My immediate question is whether they have some sort of circuit to ignore the anti-copy signal, as I don't seem to have any trouble at all copying movies from - well, anything! My uneducated guess is that they had to duplicate movies that were manufactured with the anti-copy signals, and thus needed to somehow bypass the protection.

Most of my other questions deal with using SMPTE time code, as there doesn't seem to be an introductory tutorial on its basic use. I'd like to sync 2 or more recording VCR's with Alesis ADAT machines so I can record local bands and myself playing, and have 16 tracks of audio - or 20+ tracks if you count the normal and Hi-Fi audio functions in the VCR's. I understand you need an Alesis BRC to translate the time code between the ADAT's and VCR's, but haven't gotten quite that far yet.

Nothing to bug you about on the VCR's, as I was able to get them all working with fairly simple mechanical fixes, and was able to confirm a bad video head (or something on the flying head preamp board) using a substitution signal from a VC93. Funny that I have pretty good head protrusion on the drum and no visible broken ferrite chunks, so possibly the preamp - but that's as far as I felt like going that day.


I have the training and service manuals for the VP-1000, and the predecessor commercial player PR7820, an alignment disc, but no jigs. Yours uses the old Helium-Neon tube laser. I have an optical laser block out of one, and a laser from one set up with some tracking mirrors X-Y for horizontal and vertical, driven with a small stereo amplifier, had this set up in the den years ago to draw Lissajous patterns on the wall!

http://i125.photobucket.com/albums/p72/tblazed/laser-he-ne1.jpg



Laserdiscs can get noisy when the aluminum reflective layer starts to break down. Some much worse than others that still play remarkably well. But even new discs would have a speck here and there, or an occasional crawling dot as a minor defect passed by.

I think my friend has a CX box if you ever decide you need one.

Those pro machines were probably designed to ignore the macrovision garbage, and some may have manually adjustable video rec level controls so that also makes the copyguard signal ineffective since that messes with the recorder's video record automatic gain control to disrupt the picture.

You have a nice project getting all that to interface and work together.

Without looking as I no longer have access to any of the JVC service manuals at the old shop, if the heads seem OK might be a failed electrolytic on the head amp board, or on the cylinder stator board if it has a similar setup I am thinking about as many JVCs had in the late 80s-early 90s which caused the phase of the head-switching signal to be all out of whack from where it's supposed to be. I've also seen heads that were clogged with something that would not clean off no matter what, and I would have to use a head lapping tape to polish off the crud. What happens if you record on that one with no playback and play that tape on a good machine?

Barry777
06-19-2010, 07:22 PM
Hi Ed,

These machines do have adjustable video record level as an option, along with seemingly hundreds of menu-driven adjustments I dare not mess with for lack of knowledge of what they do! I hadn't considered recording on the bad one and seeing how it plays on another machine, thanks very much for the tip. I'll also study the service manual for more clues - too bad I can't twirl my hand fast and accurately enough to inject a head signal into that large SMT chip on the spinning board. I have one of those cheap handheld video head testers, but of course they won't identify a clogged head. Well, maybe I can look for a dramatic change in inductance between the heads just for fun. I also haven't tried a dry type cleaning tape, and I might just have one around.

A machine of that age could definitely have bad electrolytics pretty much anywhere; in fact I stole the audio output board from the bad machine over this. I stock hundreds (or thousands) of all standard values up to 1000 uF, but generally don't keep many NP's around which were the culprits in this case. I could get really intense and try measuring in-circuit capacitance of the SMT caps, but I'm more likely to just replace them once I determine the values. I'll try to shoot you a protrusion measurement in microns on these heads if I can find time over the weekend, but a quick and gentle finger-rub feels like well over 20 microns on all of them. I had pretty much written the machine off as a parts unit, but here's my chance to really make sure it's the heads, and learn a lot besides.

Considering the way these machines performed after routine mechanism removal, cleaning and lube, looks like the previous owner(s) kept up the maintenance and alignments very diligently. Almost a disappointment for a curious technician, but at least I have some Beta machines to mechanically align and keep any hair from accumulating on my head!

Thanks again for the tips, I'll keep you posted. Cheers!

P.S. - If I keep getting older, I may need to project scope waves on my wall too! My wife is an old California hippie, so the process is sort of pre-approved if I play some Iron Butterfly while I troubleshoot.

Delawheredad
06-20-2010, 08:05 AM
I am catching up on movies that i missed by buying them real cheap at thrift stores. My local Goodwill store sells VCR tapes for a buck a pop. That's less than a Netflix rental. Most play beautifully. No it is not DVD quality but those of us who grew up on analogue it doesn't matter. Even if I only watch them once they pay for themselves. I was never much of a recording enthusiast however.
My VCR is nothing special, a 90s era Sylvania.

Ed in Tx
06-20-2010, 12:47 PM
Hi Ed,
I could get really intense and try measuring in-circuit capacitance of the SMT caps, but I'm more likely to just replace them once I determine the values..

Do you have an in-circuit ESR meter in your arsenal of testing tools? I've had pretty much 100% positive results testing surface-mounted electrolytics with my ESR meter equipped with sharp tipped probes.

http://i125.photobucket.com/albums/p72/tblazed/esrmeter-testing-1.jpg

(Hi-fi audio board out of a 20 year old JVC HR-S5800.)

Barry777
06-27-2010, 10:19 AM
Hi Ed,

An ESR meter is one of very pew pieces of gear I haven't acquired yet, and thanks for the tip. I'll try to get one as soon as budget permits. Looking at the service manual for my BR-S822U, there are 4 SMD electrolytics (.47 uF) that appear to deal with the headswitching on the flying PRE/REC board. I'm tempted to temporarily swap standard electros (all I have in stock) just to see what happens. These 4 electros appear to be in identical circuits, looks like they all supply DC control voltages to op amps inside the UPC2320GS chip on the flying board - but this is strictly a half-educated guess.

There's also a control signal that comes from the slip ring, but I admit that I've traditionally been a "belt and tire" guy and haven't studied the deeper areas of VCR electronics to know what this control signal should be or where it comes from. I should have all the equipment I need to troubleshoot - just need a bit more knowledge which I will study as time permits. But since the 4 electros in question are in identical circuits, maybe I can do a quick-and-dirty comparison of capacitance before pulling anything up. Here's a schematic of the flying preamp board:

www.barrys8trackrepair.com/PreBoard.html

Sorry it's not the clearest. Have a great Sunday!

Ed in Tx
06-27-2010, 11:16 AM
Hi Ed,

An ESR meter is one of very pew pieces of gear I haven't acquired yet...

Here's a schematic of the flying preamp board:


You NEED an ESR meter. Has saved me countless hours of time and trouble. Where a cap might test good on a Sencor capacitance meter, would be bad with the ESR meter. I rarely if ever measure capacitance now, I just check ESR. I can go through a board checking ESR of all the electrolytics and mark any that don't test good with a felt-tip marker, then go back and replace those.

I see now what you are dealing with. This is where I need the rest of the manual to follow the schematic. The pinout of the cylinder assy to the boards it connects to might help. Not the motor but the signal part. I would look at the +5V, the PB head-switching signal, the amp mode signal, the slip ring condition, and if there's any PB FM signal coming out while it trys to play a tape.

Barry777
06-27-2010, 12:49 PM
Hi Ed,

Thanks to your tips, it looks like I've found the video heads to be okay. I recorded color bars on the bad machine, and I do get a constant video signal when played back on a good machine. The color flickered in and out, so I tried a monochrome crosshatch pattern. It played back with constant video again, and was very jittery both up-and-down and left-to-right, but at least it appears that the heads are recording, so they should be capable of playback also? The head switching point was near the top of the screen which doesn't seem right. I checked the menu settings on the bad machine (and also reset everything per the manual) which didn't seem to fix anything. I took care to make sure the switching point is properly adjusted at 6.5H for recording and 4.5H for playback in the menu adjustments - but I know the software controls can only do so much if the circuit itself is faulty.

So now it's starting to look like an electrical alignment issue. I don't know if anything on the flying REC/PRE board would continue to be suspect now, but I did check those 4 electros with a cheap cap meter - all read around .56 uF though I'm sure the ESR could still be bad. My control signal (30 Hz?) is making it to the slip ring, and the ring and brushes appear okay visually. I do have about +2 volts of DC offset in the control signal, not sure if that would throw off any bias stuff in that preamp chip - and it might be normal anyway. I think it's time I spent several evenings learning some basic VCR theory, studied the manual intently, then set up the bench for a full check of the alignment. I haven't checked the servos yet with the VC93, but the head switching point pretty much stays in the same place and the video playback is consistant on the good machine, albeit jittery. My limited knowledge at this point suggests a problem somewhere in the head switching circuitry and probably more (sheepish grin).

Sounds like an ESR meter is great for in-circuit cap checking? Which one would you recommend? I'll quit for today and let my brain soak up what I've learned so far, then maybe hit it again next weekend. This VCR is more a fun project rather than anything urgent - my chance to learn something about electronics which I somehow manage to do for a living :-)

Ed in Tx
06-27-2010, 01:44 PM
I took care to make sure the switching point is properly adjusted at 6.5H for recording and 4.5H for playback in the menu adjustments - but I know the software controls can only do so much if the circuit itself is faulty.

So now it's starting to look like an electrical alignment issue.
Sounds like an ESR meter is great for in-circuit cap checking? Which one would you recommend?

Are you looking at the head switching signal in one channel and the video in the other channel on an o'scope? I figure you are. PB sw-pt should obviously not be at the top of the picture. Sounds like the old symptom of a surface mount electrolytic in the head drum PG circuit, not producing a good PG pulse so the servo knows where the heads are, the FG is working since it's running at the right speed. A lot of those combined the FG and PG on the drum stator board into a single signal the servo IC could sort out. The cap that would fail on those was on the drum motor stator board.

About a year ago I bought my 2nd ESR meter in kit form:

http://www.anatekcorp.com/blueesr.htm

If you shop around for this one, you can find a deal that might still include the optional stand for it, free.

I also still have my original Dick Smith Electronics from Australia ESR meter, from about 10 years ago. It was also a kit, but it's been discontinued for a few years.

http://www.electronicrepairguide.com/esr-capacitor-tester.html

I'm not sure what's available these days, but I think there are some lower cost already assembled ESR meters. Others I see are now combining ESR and capacitance test in one meter.

Barry777
06-27-2010, 01:46 PM
Well, this is interesting. My control signal is reading 15 Hz during playback of any tape, even a brand new blank tape. It reads the usual 30 Hz until it loads a tape, then reads 15 Hz thereafter. When I eject the tape, it goes back to 30 Hz. So there's a good starting point - surely a 15 Hz control signal can have something to do with this. I'll see what happens when I force it to 30 Hz with the VC93.

Barry777
06-27-2010, 10:24 PM
New developments: On the bad machine, the control signal's duration is much longer on the positive half-cycle than on the negative half-cycle with the machine in PLAY mode. About 2 and a half times as long. Eject the tape, and it goes back to the correct symmetrical 30 Hz signal. Also, it looks like my service manual was written before this serial number, as the FM PRE board near the head drum is completely missing, with the wiring going instead to the Audio 3 board - which only contains about 30% of the circuitry as the Audio 3 board on the good machine. Looks like they replaced a lot of discrete circuits with some kind of microprocessor - somewhere.

So now I'm not sure if the same check/alignment procedures would apply. Both my good 822's have the optional Time Code boards installed. Time to check the manual supplement for more clues.

Barry777
06-28-2010, 07:50 AM
Please forgive the excessive individual posts; for some reason my edits won't take when I try to update. I'm going to recap the CTL/Servo board before I go taking the drum assembly apart to work on the stator board, which looks fairly involved on this machine. My PG pulse is clean and strong, just has that strange duty cycle problem. Since the pulse goes through so much junk on the CTL/Servo board, I figure it can't hurt to replace thoese caps before going much further.

I see now that the pulse is still effectively 30 Hz, but that long duration of the positive half-cycle is what the counter is triggering on. There are some electronic switches (IC's) on that board also which explains why the pulse would abrubtly change when in PLAY mode. I think a few bad caps could wreak this kind of havoc, so you know what I'll be doing after work this evening.

Barry777
06-28-2010, 07:52 AM
Incidentally, I did replace the .47 uF caps on the flying preamp board, with no change.

National
06-28-2010, 11:29 AM
Love VHS here, i prefer it over dvd. i like to have a full screen, and moreso like not having to worry about it skipping 3/4 through a movie

My Decks National NV850A x3 (3 head HiFi) 1st HiFi vcr on the domestic scene.
National NV-870A (4 head HiFi)
Panasonic NV-HD100 (4 head HiFi / 6 rotary heads)
National NV-F70A (4 head HiFi / 7 rotary heads)
Panasonic AG-MD835 x4 (HiFi Stereo 8 rotary heads)

- Baily :)

Barry777
06-28-2010, 07:33 PM
You got it, Baily. I got so frustrated at the "disc error" messages, the digital checkerboards and the freeze frame, I now only play a DVD if it's not available on other formats - and I immediately transfer any DVD's to VHS, a format that actually works every time. Plus I love working on VCR's, pretty much a requirement if one does a lot of VCR'ing.

ceebee23
06-28-2010, 10:52 PM
I have a three current VHS units ..

a Sony from 1996
an RCA from around 1999
a JVC SVHS from 2002
and a combo DVD/VCR unit by Samsung 2009

All are 6 head stereo units and the Sony, JVC and RCA are multi-standard PAL/NTSC capable of recording in PAL, SECAM and NTSC and NTSC4.53
(the Samsung will play NTSC but not record it..well it sort of does ..it outputs PAL at 625/30)

We still use VHS for recording long programming eg. football or special events where either the DVD or PVR are unsuitable or unavailable.

And my partner has some hundreds of programmes recorded from German television...I have similar number of VHS and Beta tapes of material from as far back as 1978.

I specifically bought the Samsung unit to supplement the other VCRs because of VHS is gradually disappearing from the shelves..so it is grab 'em while you can!

Barry777
06-30-2010, 11:44 PM
Ed,

If you're out there, thanks a million for the shortcut on my JVC BR-S822U. I injected a 30 Hz pulse from my VC93 to TP7 on the D/C Servo board, and the picture popped in clear as a bell. The only thing before TP7 is the head drum, so I think we got it licked. The picture comes and goes at regular intervals of course, since there's no sync between the VC93 and the rest of the VCR, but I got what I was looking for - a steady picture for a few seconds to tell me the heads are definitely good.

Being me, I started off getting too complicated again and recapped the D/C Servo board before I did some simple scoping around. Where I should have gotten a PG pulse, I was getting nothing but square wave harmonics and noise, probably leakage from nearby circuitry. Well, now I'll know I have a healthy servo board ~ ~ ~

Over the weekend I'll pull the mechanism for a good cleaning and lube, at which time I'll replace those caps on the stator board. With any luck, I'll have (3) good 822's which will complete the video portion of my makeshift studio. $100 to get a used BRC for the time code translation to the ADAT's, and I'm in like Flint and can start some serious band recording. I sure didn't expect it to be this easy, since VCO's and PLL's drive me crazy at work - these PG feedback circuits don't seem too dissimilar. At any rate, you pretty much fixed it for me.

Thanks again Ed !!!

Barry777
06-30-2010, 11:44 PM
Darn - now I don't have a parts unit anymore :-)

Ed in Tx
07-01-2010, 08:08 AM
Well I hope I was right, and you will end up with a good spare machine. :thmbsp: You will probably need to realign the PB switching point when you put it back together. There's usually enough play in the mounting to change the relation of the PG pickup to the head position.

I know what you mean though about losing your parts unit. I bought a spare turntable back in Feb after looking for one for over a year, intending for it to be a parts unit should my main TT fail, like a DD motor or somesuch failure of a non-available part. Got this "parts unit" going so well now, I've been using it for my daily player since. Retired the original one I bought new in 1979 for a while, give it a rest!

Barry777
07-01-2010, 09:22 PM
Hi Ed,

You were right indeed. I lifted the mechanism and was able to stand it on its side without disconnecting ALL the cabling, and saw a single 3.3 uF, 50v electro on the stator board. Replaced it with a standard one, put 'er back together - the picture came in beautifully. Recorded a signal and played it back on another machine - again, wonderful!

I would have likely found it eventually depending on how persistent I felt, but I may have never even considered caps on the drum assembly - especially since this tiny board is not to be found in the manual. I may have written it off as a weak magnet in the upper drum - so I say again:

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!

Ed in Tx
07-01-2010, 10:04 PM
Hi Barry Glad to help! Good to know that's what it was.

pugs5061
07-05-2010, 12:22 AM
I have a top of the line Zenith Stereo VCR from the early to mid 80's. My wife bought it for me new when we were dating for over $500. I used it every day until about 1995 because of the stereo option and I still use it quite often. Here are the problems I've had with the machine and the maintenance and repairs I've done:


:D I spose I should clean it some day. This thing is better than a Timex. Probably keep it until I die, I use it now for my older sets. I will follow up with a model number tommorrow.

Ed in Tx
07-05-2010, 07:52 AM
I have a top of the line Zenith Stereo VCR from the early to mid 80's.. A post-Beta Mid-'80s Zenith VHS? Probably one of the JVC-made machines. JVC originally manufactured Zenith VHS VCRs, until Goldstar bought out Zenith.

pugs5061
07-05-2010, 05:31 PM
Its a Zenith HI-FI HQ Model VR2225. Heavy too! It's made in Japan but still has the Glenview IL. address. Most likely JVC.

stacyellenk
07-09-2010, 08:26 AM
I'm in, I still have many vcr's, including one I bought a few months ago that is more of a prosumer machine to play tapes that have tracking issues.

I'm just an analog girl living in a digital world:thmbsp:

zenithfan1
07-09-2010, 11:28 PM
Welcome to VK stacyellenk! If you say you're an analog girl, then you found the right website:yes:
What other analog goodies do you have? Any old tube tv's?

stacyellenk
07-10-2010, 08:09 AM
Welcome to VK stacyellenk! If you say you're an analog girl, then you found the right website:yes:
What other analog goodies do you have? Any old tube tv's?

Nope, just my Sony Wega that I still have from the pre-flat screen/HD era that I bought in 2002:D I do also however have a Beta machine that I bought on Craigslist a few years ago and had restored so that I can access some of those tapes that I have as well.

VHS is my analog passion for video, but other than that it's all about music for me - i actually make my way over here from Audiokarma, where thanks to the help over there I'm now the owner of a 70's analog stereo setup.

I have hundreds and hundreds - and hundreds - of videotapes, so I've made sure that I have enough vcr's to support them. And thankfully I am in L.A. so there is a VCR repair shop down the road from where i live.

I appreciate computers and the technology, and being able to carry around video and music on my ipod etc. but I will never give up my analog media.

Cogsinister
08-05-2010, 02:42 PM
I use VHS HiFi for audio...

http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4077/4863504113_6f9fb9dd75_b.jpg

My main audio machine is a Mitsubishi built Eletrohome model......sounds fantastic !!

radiomojo
08-10-2010, 02:02 AM
I still use a VCR but I don't watch too many movies. I don't like the DVD format at all. In fact, I am still PO about the whole digital TV transition and plan on picking up some more VCRs and a couple of agile modulators because I am going to stay analog.
Rod

Barry777
08-11-2010, 07:25 AM
Yep - just last night the wife and I were watching a DVD player I purchased brand new about a year ago, and cleaned the lens about a month ago. Started hanging up, stuttering and broke into that wonderful digital checkerboard pattern. Looked at the wife and said, "That's why I went back to VCR's".

Hi-Fi VCR's come in handy for recording long periods of time off the radio, like if you play in bands and need tons of songs to learn and add to your song list.

Dude111
08-28-2010, 07:07 PM
VCRs are the way to go my friend :)

soundman2
09-11-2010, 12:28 PM
I, personally, do not trust those DVD recorder things as far as I could throw one! I own a DVD recorder as does a friend of mine but hardly use it. I always use my machines (Panasonic) to record from digital satellite and a separate FREEVIEW digital terrestrial box.

The main advantage of a VCR over a DVD recorder is, when a DVD recorder comes across a bad disc....it just gives up therefore losing the programme you want to record. A VCR does not give a hoot about a bad bit of tape and just carries on regardless.:yes:

I have a stockpile of machines (about 22 last count) and even though we will be the last area to switch to digital full-time here in the UK, September 2012, I will continue to use VHS as long as I can. :thmbsp:

jedo1507r
09-11-2010, 01:23 PM
The main advantage of a VCR over a DVD recorder is, when a DVD recorder comes across a bad disc....it just gives up therefore losing the programme you want to record. A VCR does not give a hoot about a bad bit of tape and just carries on regardless.:yes:


That is so true. I've had a particular machine, a Funai-built DVD recorder, throw its hands up in the air (by way of an error message on the screen) after 10 seconds of recording a disc it didn't like--in this case, some Memorex DVD-Rs... though it certainly loved the Verbatims I regularly use. OTOH, that recorder has clocked at least a thousand hours of recording since it is used for tape transfer of old education videos for the department I work for, so they can abuse the discs instead of the tapes that are approaching 25 years of age.

The 1999 Sony SLV-M11HF I use for the transfers is a dream to use for this task because of the insanely fast wind/rewind and its picture quality. The 2000 Panasonic NV-SJ200 is also used for the few mono PAL tapes in the collection. :D

Jeffhs
09-11-2010, 03:50 PM
I have an 8-year-old Panasonic Omnivision VCR that still works every bit as well as the day I bought it. Also have VHS videos I recorded from TV (old TV series and movies from the '50s through the '80s, plus a few professionally-recorded movies and travelogues) that still play well today, most of them (except the professionally-recorded ones) now at or approaching 25 years old. I do not own a DVD recorder, although I do have a Memorex DVD player I bought some 2.5 years ago that still works very well (despite a warning I read on one of the TV repair websites that recent-vintage Memorex DVDs have a capacitor that will swell and split open within nine months of initial purchase; the one in mine hasn't yet, knock on wood :yes:).

soundman2
09-12-2010, 02:07 AM
It's good to see others have the same mind-set when it comes to VHS. Surprising enough the vast bulk of my VCR's have come from the local dump or "tip" as we call them in the UK. Many people are now buying those PVR machines with HDD units in them and that includes SKY Plus satellite units as folks just throw their VHS machines.

Another thing I love about VHS is that you don't have to tell the machine how many hours recording you want on a disc as there are only 2 speeds SP/LP (or on Panasonic VHS machines EP) never used it myself but I understand that it slows the tape to a THIRD of normal speed enabling 9 hours recording on an E-180 cassette. No finalising needed either.

Some people I know have actually laughed at me for still having VHS in use, but I like to see it this way. All those with the fancy DVD recorders will probably cry their eyes out when the laser dies and all they can do is throw it away. :tears:

Whereas my VHS recorders will still be running like a dream. :D

By the way, has anyone noticed the rising prices of blank VHS tapes - a conspiracy I think!

site123a
09-18-2010, 11:03 PM
Does anyone here still uses a VHS camcorder to record home movies (either full size or compact)?

The Doctor
09-30-2010, 11:05 PM
The battered, beaten and bruised yet still working JVC BR1500U. Found upside down in a pile of dirt, I took it home expecting it to be fried, however this machine refuses to die. And it has possibly the niftiest remote I've ever seen.

http://img839.imageshack.us/img839/2756/dsc00363p.jpg

Click here fore some other pictures (http://img839.imageshack.us/gal.php?g=dsc00363p.jpg)

I've got three other cheap VCR's but I love the old JVC. I've got no clue to the age but from what I can figure from the dates on back it's about 25+ years old.

Barry777
10-10-2010, 12:43 AM
Yes, I use a couple VHS camcorders, except that I installed BNC jacks and standard DC power jacks so that I can use them as cameras only. Then I run the cables to my VCR's. I do this because I need to record time code in order to sync the video to my ADAT machines for multitrack (24 track) audio capability. Poor man's production studio.

soundman2
12-17-2010, 12:21 PM
They knew how to make VCR's back then - built like a tank:D:D:D

Dude111
12-17-2010, 12:36 PM
Yup!!

The VCRs made in the 80s WERE THE BEST!!!!!!

Beautfiul picture The Doctor :)

Jeffhs
12-17-2010, 12:57 PM
I had a Panasonic-built GE top-loading VCR in 1984. I'd probably still have it today if the heads had not worn out after six years. Today, 26 years and several VCRs of various makes later, I have another Panny VCR, model PV-4022, which hasn't given me five minutes' worth of trouble and still works amazingly well for its age (eight years), except that it makes a loud screeching noise in rewind or fast forward -- but not in forward or reverse search mode. :scratch2: I also had a Panny VCR with VCR Plus (my current VCR's predecessor), but I had to trash that one when it ate a cassette. I nearly had to wreck the VCR to get the tape out. :no:

BTW, speaking of VCR Plus, whatever happened to it? I think that was one of the best things to happen to VCRs since the machines first came on the market. :yes: :thmbsp: I think as well that this feature would be useful with today's DVRs, as it would allow viewers to set the machines for recording simply by entering a three- to five-digit code, as VCR Plus for VHS worked. Some local newspapers, such as the Cleveland Plain Dealer, had VCR Plus codes in their TV listings as late as the 1990s.

fifties
12-17-2010, 03:26 PM
We bought our first two Beta-Maxes, one new and one used, in 1978.

One of 'em (I think it was a Zenith) had metal piano keys on top.

We must still have hundreds of Beta tapes, and I bought a Sony Super Beta Max off Flea-bay to watch 'em a few years back, but it gets little use, since I am always on the internet, and the wife likes to channel-surf, lol.

We also have two VHS machines, each bought -I dunno, within the last 15 years- that as well get little use, a Panasonic and a Sharp.

Beta always had the superior picture though.

Dude111
12-17-2010, 10:34 PM
I had a Panasonic-built GE top-loading VCR in 1984. I'd probably still have it today if the heads had not worn out after six years.Wow im sorry... That wasnt common back then i dont think for stuff to give out so soon :(

Ed in Tx
12-17-2010, 11:04 PM
Not really that uncommon to wear out heads. Those old mechanisms would go many more hours than the heads might last. I used to replace a lot of VCR head assemblies back in the heyday. Ordered a lot of them from a company called ASTI Magnetics (which surprizingly is still in business) aftermarket at a fraction of the OEM price so the repair cost would be affordable, and performance as good or better than original.

Dude111
12-18-2010, 01:12 AM
Yes i imagine it would be if better stuff was put in :)

waltchan
12-21-2010, 03:50 AM
The battered, beaten and bruised yet still working JVC BR1500U. Found upside down in a pile of dirt, I took it home expecting it to be fried, however this machine refuses to die. And it has possibly the niftiest remote I've ever seen.

I've got three other cheap VCR's but I love the old JVC. I've got no clue to the age but from what I can figure from the dates on back it's about 25+ years old.
This one was made in 1984, so 27 years old when 2011 hits.

Trance88
12-22-2010, 01:06 AM
I still use VHS but I'm starting to have second thoughts. The machines I get always turn to crap on me or were crap to begin with. Then, when I go to try to fix them, I only make them worse.

I once had an 1984 JVC top loader that had major problems. I only got it to play a tape once before it popped fuses and got a tape stuck in it. I then got an early 90's RCA VCR that lasted a couple of years and then something broke inside, I opened it up and it literally crumbled in my hands. I then got a free from craigslist late 80's Hitachi made Sears branded VCR. It worked great and had a great picture to boot. A couple months back I decided to give it a head clean so I popped in my cleaning cassette and it nearly ruined the picture quality. I used Q-tips and some rubbing alcohol to bring it back to how it was before. A second Q-tip cleaning later on killed it.

Now, I just have a late 90's Philips Magnavox VCR that has some quirks of its own. It displays a pretty grainy picture, most likely from a previous attempt to clean it with Q-tips and alcohol but at least it records and plays tapes!!!

dieseljeep
12-22-2010, 09:38 AM
I still believe in my VCR's . I can buy brand new blank tapes 3 for a buck at the thrifts. I don't fool around with any Funai built units. The 2000 or newer units that seem the best are Sanyo, Sony and RCA/GE. Pre 2000 Panasonic with the cast aluminum decks are the only ones that seem to hold up well.

waltchan
12-22-2010, 02:43 PM
I still believe in my VCR's . I can buy brand new blank tapes 3 for a buck at the thrifts. I don't fool around with any Funai built units. The 2000 or newer units that seem the best are Sanyo, Sony and RCA/GE. Pre 2000 Panasonic with the cast aluminum decks are the only ones that seem to hold up well.
None of these I can recommend. The Sanyo would be made by LG, Sony would be made by Samsung, and RCA/GE would be made by Daewoo or Samsung. In my opinion, the best and most reliable VCR made in the new era is the 2002 and newer Mitsubishi units, such as HS-U449, HS-U749, HS-HD1100U, and HS-HD2000U.

jbivy
12-22-2010, 09:27 PM
Well unfortunately my old sony top loader died and it was beyond my means to fix it and the repair shop guy just laughed at such an old beast. So I picked up a pair of modern modern ones. Another sony and a phillips-magnavox. Well it keeps me from having to rebuy all my movies on dvd and well, i get a bit nostalgic for popping in a tape, rather than a dvd.

Just recently bought a front loader sony super hi-fi betamax player for reasons even i dont understand. Though now im searching on ebay for tapes, to actually test it.

But id like to keep these old babies working for as long as possible. If for any other reason, it was interesting to see my 6 year old nephew wonder over the vhs tapes. Its odd to know that he has never seen them before.

Dude111
05-07-2011, 04:00 AM
This page tells the truth about DVD and VHS quality audio/video (Which i think is much better)

http://www.adequacy.org/stories/2001.8.24.112921.289.html

Ed in Tx
05-07-2011, 09:39 AM
This page tells the truth about DVD and VHS quality audio/video (Which i think is much better)

http://www.adequacy.org/stories/2001.8.24.112921.289.html

Whoever wrote that mentioned "vertical resolution" but failed to mention horizontal resolution (i.e., video bandwidth or frequency response) which is the important "spec" since NTSC is fixed with 525 vertical lines. Standard VHS reproduces 250 lines horiz resolution (or about 3 mHz video bandwidth or frequency response) at best, likewise Beta. DVD has a video bandwidth out to over 6 mHz. equal to 480 horiz lines. Both VHS and Beta downconvert the chroma which kills the color resolution into color blurs superimposed onto the b&w image. S-VHS and ED-Beta achieved up to 5-6 mHz video equal over 400 horiz lines but they still downconverted the chroma. S-VHS/ ED-Beta at their optimum, and with time base corrrection, can certainly look about as good as a DVD.

Dude111
05-07-2011, 12:18 PM
But they sound MUCH BETTER than DVD! (I have many movies i am grateful to have on VHS :) (Recorded in the 80s)) you can hear and see the difference!! (@ least i can)

Ed in Tx
05-07-2011, 06:00 PM
Well that's certainly debatable too. VHS Hi Fi sounds excellent when all's right, but can have artifacts in the audio like head switching noise, tape path misalignment noise, and varying noise floor from the compander noise reduction Hi Fi uses to get the s/n down to a low level. But it's sure a hell of a lot better than the linear stereo tracks (mono track split in two) Hi Fi replaced before that stereo format got too far.

I have plenty of examples of DTS and Dolby Digital that are incredible audio quality wise. Several music albums released in multichannel DVD-A, DTS and Dolby Digital. Funny that writer prefers old 2-channel Dolby Surround which as I recall was derived from their early QS-SQ matrix surround. Heck I still have a Sansui QSD-1 4 channel synthesizer-decoder circa about 1976 set up for 4 channel listening but things have improved greatly since.

ChrisW6ATV
05-08-2011, 11:56 PM
This page tells the truth about DVD and VHS quality audio/video (Which i think is much better)

http://www.adequacy.org/stories/2001.8.24.112921.289.html
Maybe someone believed that article when it was written in 2001, but in 2011 it is a joke. VHS in a "home theater"?

The one thing they got right may be the name of the Web site itself, "adequacy". Home theater is about excellence, not adequacy.

Dude111
05-10-2011, 09:58 AM
....I know people who have said they got rid of all their vhs and got all their movied in DVD. And the same people got rid of their records and tapes to get CD's. I can't see it. Why rebuy stuff like that? I have some vhs movies I watch 100 times or more and they still look like the first watching......Yes its stupid....

They are losing quality and dont care...... I am a purist,I PREFER QUALITY!!

Visual
07-01-2011, 12:29 AM
Not really that uncommon to wear out heads. Those old mechanisms would go many more hours than the heads might last. I used to replace a lot of VCR head assemblies back in the heyday. Ordered a lot of them from a company called ASTI Magnetics (which surprizingly is still in business) aftermarket at a fraction of the OEM price so the repair cost would be affordable, and performance as good or better than original.

hi-here a cool Pioneer beta vcrhttp://img331.auctions.yahoo.co.jp/users/4/9/7/7/mayumitomitsuru-img600x450-1304929542rt26bv24732.jpghttp://img331.auctions.yahoo.co.jp/users/4/9/7/7/mayumitomitsuru-img600x450-1304929542fct1ox24732.jpg

Dude111
12-08-2013, 12:52 AM
Maybe someone believed that article when it was written in 2001, but in 2011 it is a joke.I dont see why you think the page is a joke.....

VHS is analog and ANALOG HAS ALWAYS BEEN NICER!! (The sound is nicer and a true analog picture is quite nice too!!)

I have cable and DirecTV so i have to look @ compromised video and its horrible! (Sound isnt as natural sounding either (compromised) (I dont care to watch much of it to be quite frank with you about it!))

Also I would rather watch movies I have loved ALL MY LIFE in the same analogue format I have always loved them in! (I want them to look/sound EXACTLY THE SAME) I want them to be THE BEST THEY CAN BE and its sad this digital crap has infested our world.... Its total garbage!!


Its sad today: People are satisfied with LESS and its quite sad.........

walterbeers
12-08-2013, 03:05 PM
I still use my VHS, and have a bunch of movies that I watch from time to time. Also there is always a good selection of cheap tapes at thrift stores, and lots of people just give away there collections. It a good way to get retro movies for cheap or even free. I used to repair lots of them when I was doing electronics repair as an income, and generally all they required was cleaning, belts, idler tires, and an occasional plastic gear or some other little piece in the tape mechanism. Occasionally I had to replace/ re cap switch mode supplies in the "newer models".

Electronic M
12-08-2013, 03:59 PM
I dont see why you think the page is a joke.....

VHS is analog and ANALOG HAS ALWAYS BEEN NICER!! (The sound is nicer and a true analog picture is quite nice too!!)

I have cable and DirecTV so i have to look @ compromised video and its horrible! (Sound isnt as natural sounding either (compromised) (I dont care to watch much of it to be quite frank with you about it!))

Also I would rather watch movies I have loved ALL MY LIFE in the same analogue format I have always loved them in! (I want them to look/sound EXACTLY THE SAME) I want them to be THE BEST THEY CAN BE and its sad this digital crap has infested our world.... Its total garbage!!


Its sad today: People are satisfied with LESS and its quite sad.........
The single scratch ruining a disc argument in that article is complete rubbish, but the rest is fairly accurate.

I'll add the following arguments to the topic to stimulate thought. Because DVDs are compressed the video compression usually has a threshold for how small of motion it will capture...This reduces noise, but also causes problems like causing a smooth pan to become choppy, and causing a distant characters mouth not to move on some words or not move at all after compression. basically reducing motion resolution.

One thing to keep in mind is that regular VHS has resolutions below that of the NTSC standard so a properly mastered DVD will likely have more resolution on a stationary image and possibly less noise. This can be noticeable even if your TV is a NTSC unit as mine are, especially if it is one of the higher performance models.

Both methods have their drawbacks, but I rather average noise in my head than deal with compression artifacts. Another thing to consider is that there are better analog formats than VHS. S-VHS, LaserDisc, SuperBetamax, ED Betamax, and W-VHS all have better resolution than regular VHS, and in the case of W-VHS analog HD resolutions were the goal of the design!

When it comes to prerecorded stuff analog may never be fully displaced in my entertainment system. Though it has been displaced in my archiving of broadcast programs. Since DVD-Rs are cheaper than tape(and easier to find), smaller, and all broadcast material I can get is hopelessly compressed anyway so the main advantage of tape is not achievable....It is interesting to go back to before the compression was so egregious and compare my early DVD recordings of TV shows to the S-VHS-ET recordings I made. I literally ran a DVD recorder and a VCR and taped the same thing on two different formats for a while before deciding DVD better served the purpose. S-VHS in SP is virtually indistinguishable from DVD as far as resolution of material recorded off a cable TV source...S-VHS is especially hard to distinguish from the cable source since it lacks the added compression artifacts of DVD.

KV-1926R
12-08-2013, 04:04 PM
I still use my VHS, and have a bunch of movies that I watch from time to time. Also there is always a good selection of cheap tapes at thrift stores, and lots of people just give away there collections. It a good way to get retro movies for cheap or even free.
Oh yeah, my store rocks for tape selection. I haven't watched any of mine yet, both of my VCRs are getting re-belted first. I have the Sharp VC-581C and a Hitachi-built RCA VMT285. One of the best things about working at that store, I don't have to deal with flakes not answering emails as I did with the online classifieds. Also, a lot of them wouldn't hold an item until I could get there on the bus even if it was a free give. At the store, it's just find, buy, done. The prices are a lot better too. I'd rather pay a nominal fee for something I want than deal with those online flakes.

TVTim
12-08-2013, 07:14 PM
I still record TV shows on VHS. So much easier than DVDs. I've had DVDs mess up and not record the show. Never an issue with VHS.

Combo units are great also. They are very difficult to find as newer recorders are taking over.

Dangler
12-08-2013, 07:23 PM
I record shows that I want to keep that are on the hard drive of my Directv receiver to VHS. It won't let me copy anything to DVD from the hard drive, but I can record them from the VHS to DVD with no problem.

Dude111
12-08-2013, 10:54 PM
Oh yeah, my store rocks for tape selection. I haven't watched any of mine yet, both of my VCRs are getting re-belted first.I hope they come home soon buddy!

Did ya ever get that movie I found for ya in the other thread??

KV-1926R
12-09-2013, 06:09 PM
Did ya ever get that movie I found for ya in the other thread??
I forgot, what movie is that?

Dude111
12-09-2013, 06:50 PM
This one bud :)

www.videokarma.org/showthread.php?p=3087303#post3087303

KV-1926R
12-09-2013, 07:50 PM
This one bud :)

www.videokarma.org/showthread.php?p=3087303#post3087303
Ah, gotcha. I hadn't followed that thread beyond my post. Thanks for that link. I'm hoping it will show up at my shop, but that seems unlikely.

Obviously, Hollywood blockbusters are not my thing.

Dude111
12-10-2013, 04:34 AM
I thihk your quite lucky having a shop that collects VHS to sell!!

ChrisW6ATV
12-11-2013, 03:59 AM
I dont see why you think the page is a joke.....

VHS is analog and ANALOG HAS ALWAYS BEEN NICER!! (The sound is nicer and a true analog picture is quite nice too!!)
Analog sound and video can be fine, but it is not "always nicer" in my opinion, or the opinion of most people I know. Digital is not "always nicer", either.

I have cable and DirecTV so i have to look @ compromised video and its horrible! (Sound isnt as natural sounding either (compromised) (I dont care to watch much of it to be quite frank with you about it!))
You and I agree 100% here. Cable and especially satellite TV almost always look very lousy. It is their exact business model to do the maximum amount of digital compression they can get away with, without getting too many complaints from customers (but definitely accepting SOME amount of complaints as meaning "good enough").

Also I would rather watch movies I have loved ALL MY LIFE in the same analogue format I have always loved them in! (I want them to look/sound EXACTLY THE SAME)Either that, OR
I want them to be THE BEST THEY CAN BE
You cannot have both-those are opposites!

Technology does improve. Even late-release commercial VHS tapes looked mich better than the early 1980s releases of the same movies. But Blu-ray versions of almost any movie just completely blow away and crush ANY previous home-video version in every case that I have seen. I hope you have a chance to see a Blu-ray movie on a good high-definition display; it is really a wonderful experience to see the fine detail and full wide-screen picture exactly as the director intended theater-goers to see, but in your own home (or a friend's home). That does not mean you cannot enjoy movies or other programming in various analog formats; I do so here as well, primarily Laser Discs of many music-video releases that are not available on newer formats (or indeed do not look any better in a DVD version; it does happen!). One of these days, I will pull out some of my video tapes recorded in 1979-1990 and watch them, too. its sad this digital crap has infested our world.... Its total garbage!! There is no point in trying to respond to such a comment.

beat_truck
12-12-2013, 01:01 AM
I like the crisp picture of a DVD, but I have no problem watching VHS tapes. I grew up with VHS and still use it. I have hundreds of pre recorded movies, and still buy them. They are $.50 at the local thrifts and are plentiful. I don't record much anymore unless it is just something on TV that I want to watch later on.

I used to record from TV all the time, but now there isn't hardly anything on that I want to see. Nearly all of the movies I taped years ago have been replaced with DVDs, pre recorded tapes, and some downloads because the cable we had years had a very crappy picture.

snelson903
12-12-2013, 04:36 AM
i still use vhs ,and even cassetts in cars & truck, if isnt broke why fix it. we use everything dvd cds , hook the ipod to a 1966 floor model stereo , it all works together.

Charlie
12-23-2013, 07:49 PM
My main video recorder is a Panasonic VCR/DVD... have had it about 10 years I think... maybe more.

I also have an LG VCR/DVD recorder, but the DVD's dont always come out... you get halfway through recrording something and it tells you "you cant do this." Or, it gets to the end, finalizes the DVD, and then says ERROR. You might get lucky and find you can still play it.

So, I will continue to use my Panasonic because it seems to be bullet proof. Now and then, I will use the VCR in the LG just to keep the belts exercised.

Before my Panasonic, I had a Teac HIFI 4head VCR bought back in the early 90's... got ten years use out if it. I liked that machine.

Electronic M
12-24-2013, 04:52 PM
Could it be macrovision messing it up?

Dude111
12-25-2013, 03:59 PM
I HATE MACROVISION!!

I have the movie HOUSE ARREST on VHS (HBO Video) and its got MACROVISION and looks like crap!!

I would LOVE finding a copy on VHS that was not by HBO video!! (Probably wouldnt have this garbage)

Harvestman
01-08-2014, 11:05 PM
I have begun cataloguing my VHS collection, and currently have around 120 tapes.

My parents were clearing out their VHS tapes, so I gladly acquired tapes like the Beatles' Anthology (sadly not in optimal quality) and 12 hours of "Friday Night Videos" from 1982 to 1986.

I've just finished setting up a two-deck setup for recording short segments of particular tapes onto a separate tape - a sort of "best-of" compilation, if you will.

Just out of curiosity - does anyone know when the first VCRs with stereo RCA outputs came onto the market?

Ed in Tx
01-09-2014, 07:36 AM
First stereo VCRs I recall, linear stereo, no stereo tuner, not Hi Fi, Panasonic PV-1780 and the PV-6000 portable and about 1983. I owned one of each. I have old MTV recordings I made on them in stereo, when the cable co. carried the stereo audio on an FM frequency around 88 mHz, and used the "simulcast" function of the VCR to record video from the cable box and audio from an FM tuner. First Hi Fi came 1984, still no MTS stereo tuner until late '84-85 models.

Ed in Tx
01-09-2014, 07:45 AM
I've just finished setting up a two-deck setup for recording short segments of particular tapes onto a separate tape - a sort of "best-of" compilation, if you will.
Also, when you do that, copy a tape to another, you lose another generation of quality. More video noise, wow and flutter, other artifacts of the process get added every time you copy.

Let me know when you're done with those. I have about 1,000 tapes tapes here you can go through! :D

Harvestman
01-09-2014, 09:44 AM
Also, when you do that, copy a tape to another, you lose another generation of quality. More video noise, wow and flutter, other artifacts of the process get added every time you copy.


Hey, it comes with the format...

Besides, it's better than rewinding and fast-forwarding 90 million times to find a certain clip. :yes:

ChrisW6ATV
01-11-2014, 09:26 PM
Just out of curiosity - does anyone know when the first VCRs with stereo RCA outputs came onto the market?
If I remember right, Akai was the first to manufacture and sell stereo (VHS) VCRs, probably in 1981. As Ed said, they (and the others that followed) split the audio track space on a regular VHS tape into two halves to record in stereo, and they added Dolby noise reduction to help compensate for the half-size audio recording area. Later, Hi-Fi audio (audio multiplexed onto the video signal/recording area) came along, that blew away the linear sound quality.

ChrisW6ATV
01-11-2014, 09:32 PM
12 hours of "Friday Night Videos" from 1982 to 1986.
Totally awesome! I still have all of my original Friday Night Videos recordings on Beta tapes from that same period.

I have old MTV recordings I made on them in stereo, when the cable co. carried the stereo audio on an FM frequency around 88 mHz, and used the "simulcast" function of the VCR to record video from the cable box and audio from an FM tuner.

That is how I made my Friday Night recordings, on a Sony Beta Hi-Fi VCR, with the stereo audio from the local FM radio station that transmitted the matching audio.

ChrisW6ATV
01-11-2014, 09:38 PM
Also, when you do that, copy a tape to another, you lose another generation of quality. More video noise, wow and flutter, other artifacts of the process get added every time you copy.
My hope is to someday bring my recordings into the 21st century, or at least the late 20th century, and copy each song video into an individual computer file. Then, I could either make DVDs with directly-accessible songs, or even make rearranged tapes if I ever want to play with that for fun. Or, just let a computer play them infinitely as desired with no further quality loss or wear. :)

Ed in Tx
01-11-2014, 09:52 PM
Would be nice to get all the good stuff on DVD or digitized. Trick is in the conversion process. And good tape machines for playback.

Yes I remember now, had forgotten the Akai portable 7350 (?) that was linear stereo. Notice the dual L and R mic inputs on the front. I remember working on these. Seems I recall a lot of head drum motor problems. Had a tuner that matched, mono of course.


http://www.videokarma.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=181328&stc=1&d=1389498542

TUD1
01-11-2014, 11:38 PM
I am proud to record and watch VHS regularly. My main VHS machine is a 1985 Magnavox VR8520SL01 Rebadged Panasonic, original idler tire, untouched Switch Mode Power Supply.

Countryford
01-15-2014, 10:49 AM
We have a RCA VCR that my partner bought new in 78. He says he paid over $1,000 for it. While it isn't our everyday VCR it does still work, with the exception of the clock. We have over 500 VHS tapes and still buy them every now and then. Some we have gotten rid of for DVDs. There are some movies we have, that have not as of yet been released on DVD. We also have over 100 laserdiscs.

pac.attack76
01-19-2014, 04:46 PM
I have several vcrs. My daily use is a Toshiba 6 head. i also have a jvc svhs and about 5 other decks. i keep about 300 vhs and still buy something every now and then. biggest problem is storage. I'm not a big fan of dvd but i do have quite a few. mostly for tv serires.

Dude111
01-21-2014, 09:15 AM
I am proud to record and watch VHS regularly.

Retro in RI
01-25-2014, 01:02 PM
I still use a VCR regularly. I have what I call Poverty Cable, $25 a month, which is about 20 channels including over the air, home shopping, Spanish etc. The only reason I still have it is becaus they haven't taken away Discovery Channel (new subscribers to this package don't get Discovery). I get no on demand, dvr, etc with this package so it's use a VCR, miss the show or stay home to watch it.

I also have a TV set up for DTV and I use another VCR to record and save my favorite METV shows.

I also find a VCR is handy as a tuner. My cable package has no box, just a cable to the TV. Fine for an 80's electronic tuner set, but knob tuned will only get to channel 13. So I run the cable throught the VCR first then channel up/down with it.

I also have quite a few movies on VHS.

I buy every working VCR with remote I see. usually for $5 or ten bucks.

Retro in RI
01-25-2014, 01:27 PM
Does anyone here still uses a VHS camcorder to record home movies (either full size or compact)?

I own a compact but haven't used it in years. Keep forgetting I have it actually. Just don't find the urge to record anything these days.

Al

LuTELLO
04-03-2014, 01:46 AM
Generally I'm digital but I still like to "fool around" with analog a lot.
I save a lot of videos on DVDR but occasionally like to use something with NTSC out to record videos I get online to VHS once in a while for the heck of it. And yes, I also sometimes watch/transfer recordings I find in stores/grandpa's house/etc.

centralradio
04-03-2014, 12:28 PM
I still use mine daily.I dont trust the digital crap of DVR or DVD recorders.If the power goes out.Atlease I have some of the recording left to watch.

tvtimeisfun
04-03-2014, 12:31 PM
Vcr taprs have better pix quality than some dvds...Timothy

Dude111
04-04-2014, 10:54 AM
SOME??

All in my opinion........ Digital is artifical crap that has ruined video and audio!!