VHS VCR to DVD problem? - AVS Forum
DVD Recorders (Standard Def) > VHS VCR to DVD problem?
DigitalfreakNYC's Avatar DigitalfreakNYC 10:19 AM 03-17-2013
So I went to archive some VHS today and I haven't used my VCR in quite some time. I noticed a problem on the left side of the screen that has, what appears to be, some red and blue video noise running vertically down the picture. Any idea what this is? Is it just the VCR crapping out on me finally? I tried cleaning the heads but this looks more to be a different issue.


Any advice would be appreciated!



DigitalfreakNYC's Avatar DigitalfreakNYC 03:36 AM 03-18-2013
Btw...someone on DVDRhelp posted this:



Same picture with brightness and saturation pumped up.
DigitalfreakNYC's Avatar DigitalfreakNYC 04:26 PM 05-05-2014
I know it's been a while but I figured I would ask this again. Any suggestions?
plplplpl's Avatar plplplpl 05:57 PM 05-05-2014
Just a WAG, but is it possible to adjust the tracking on your machine? Most likely not the problem, but worth a shot. Or head alignment?
DigitalfreakNYC's Avatar DigitalfreakNYC 08:38 PM 05-06-2014
Quote:
Originally Posted by plplplpl View Post

Just a WAG, but is it possible to adjust the tracking on your machine? Most likely not the problem, but worth a shot. Or head alignment?

It's definitely not the tracking...

How do you change the head alignment?
plplplpl's Avatar plplplpl 09:21 PM 05-06-2014
Unless you know what you're doing, it's best left to a qualified VCR technician, which these days is rarer than hen's teeth. He'll do a cleaning at the same time, which certainly couldn't hurt. But then again, this is just a SWAG. smile.gif
DigitalfreakNYC's Avatar DigitalfreakNYC 09:27 PM 05-06-2014
Quote:
Originally Posted by plplplpl View Post

Unless you know what you're doing, it's best left to a qualified VCR technician, which these days is rarer than hen's teeth. He'll do a cleaning at the same time, which certainly couldn't hurt. But then again, this is just a SWAG. smile.gif

Yeah, tell me about it. I live in NYC and I'm not sure I'll even be able to find someone to do it. frown.gif
CitiBear's Avatar CitiBear 12:58 AM 05-07-2014
Quote:
Originally Posted by DigitalfreakNYC View Post

I live in NYC

Bingo! Any chance you live in Brooklyn or Queens? Because I had the same problem, and the causes/cures can be weirder than you'd think: the VCR itself may not be at fault.

Years ago we moved into an old house on the border between Bklyn/Qns, where the electricity quality coming from Con Ed is sketchy at best. Throw in the previous owner being a delusional Mr. FixIt who rewired the entire house with Christmas tree tinsel, and I had the most crap-quality AC power of anyone I knew.

This crummy power quality turned out to be the culprit in my case. Every new VCR I brought into that house would develop your greenish-blue shadow bar running down the side of the recording, with a fainter echo down the middle. It drove me crazy, because once a new VCR got contaminated with it there was no getting rid of it. I suffered with it a few years until I got *very* lucky, and some tech wrote an article about it in "Video" magazine. He claimed the green bar was caused by power irregularities (esp sags) messing up a sensitive circuit, particularly in Panasonic VCRs of the day. The recommended cure was to clean the incoming AC with an active power conditioner, and connect the VCR to the filtered outlet of that box. It sounded ridiculous, but I was desperate and "Video" was the VCR bible of the time, so I went out and spent $270 on a TrippLite 1200-watt power conditioner. To my surprise, it worked: new VCRs powered by this box never developed the green shadow bars, and some of the old ones even got a little better.

That TrippLite box ran continuously for 25 years, until it finally died on me, so I got my money's worth. I tried looking for a new one, but apparently they aren't in production anymore: they were supplanted by the UPS battery units. Kinda bummed me out, because the UPS boxes don't perform the same active conditioning function and the battery creates some other issues. Luckily I don't rely on VCRs anywhere near as much: my DVD/HDD recorders seem content running off simple surge protectors.

Re not having any decent VCR repair techs in NYC: isn't that a headscratcher? Nada, zip, bupkis: might as well be in the wilderness. Hard to believe there are still pro techs in small town Texas, but nothing in NYC. Thats why I won't spend big bucks on second-hand fancy TBC/DNR-equipped VCRs anymore: they all need major overhauls, and there's no one around to do it.
DigitalfreakNYC's Avatar DigitalfreakNYC 08:34 AM 05-07-2014
Quote:
Originally Posted by CitiBear View Post

Bingo! Any chance you live in Brooklyn or Queens? Because I had the same problem, and the causes/cures can be weirder than you'd think: the VCR itself may not be at fault.

Years ago we moved into an old house on the border between Bklyn/Qns, where the electricity quality coming from Con Ed is sketchy at best. Throw in the previous owner being a delusional Mr. FixIt who rewired the entire house with Christmas tree tinsel, and I had the most crap-quality AC power of anyone I knew.

This crummy power quality turned out to be the culprit in my case. Every new VCR I brought into that house would develop your greenish-blue shadow bar running down the side of the recording, with a fainter echo down the middle. It drove me crazy, because once a new VCR got contaminated with it there was no getting rid of it. I suffered with it a few years until I got *very* lucky, and some tech wrote an article about it in "Video" magazine. He claimed the green bar was caused by power irregularities (esp sags) messing up a sensitive circuit, particularly in Panasonic VCRs of the day. The recommended cure was to clean the incoming AC with an active power conditioner, and connect the VCR to the filtered outlet of that box. It sounded ridiculous, but I was desperate and "Video" was the VCR bible of the time, so I went out and spent $270 on a TrippLite 1200-watt power conditioner. To my surprise, it worked: new VCRs powered by this box never developed the green shadow bars, and some of the old ones even got a little better.

That TrippLite box ran continuously for 25 years, until it finally died on me, so I got my money's worth. I tried looking for a new one, but apparently they aren't in production anymore: they were supplanted by the UPS battery units. Kinda bummed me out, because the UPS boxes don't perform the same active conditioning function and the battery creates some other issues. Luckily I don't rely on VCRs anywhere near as much: my DVD/HDD recorders seem content running off simple surge protectors.

Re not having any decent VCR repair techs in NYC: isn't that a headscratcher? Nada, zip, bupkis: might as well be in the wilderness. Hard to believe there are still pro techs in small town Texas, but nothing in NYC. Thats why I won't spend big bucks on second-hand fancy TBC/DNR-equipped VCRs anymore: they all need major overhauls, and there's no one around to do it.

Citibear!
Thanks for the info!

i actually live in Queens, believe it or not! Do you still live in the city? I had emailed a few places that I found online last night to see if they still service VCR's. Haven't heard back from anyone yet.

Mine is a VHS/DVD recorder combo and, believe it or not, is from Panasonic! So there's NO way of getting rid of it? frown.gif

Do they make a variation of that box anymore? Even on ebay? Do you have any suggestions of what I should be looking for?

THANK YOU SO MUCH!!
CitiBear's Avatar CitiBear 09:39 AM 05-07-2014
Quote:
Originally Posted by DigitalfreakNYC View Post

Do they make a variation of that box anymore? Even on ebay? Do you have any suggestions of what I should be looking for?

I just checked, and it seems the TrippLite boxes are available again (for the moment). The current version of the one I had is this. Not sure this power box would cure your already-afflicted Panasonic DVD/VHS combo: my only experience was with older models, and the box was more a protective device for new VCRs than a cure for VCRs already affected.

Modern VCRs and combos draw much less power than older VCRs, so if you want to test you could try the less expensive 600w version of the Tripplite which runs about $70 on Amazon. But again, IDK if it can really do anything for your Panasonic combo deck. These line conditioners prevent damage to new hardware: they can't do much to reverse existing damage. Instead, you might try buying an external VCR and connect that to the DVD portion of your combo to make VHS dubs. Good quality, mint VCRs are easily found for $20-$30 on Craigs List and eBay (asking friends-family-coworkers often leads to free VCRs they don't want anymore). If the external VCR works great for awhile, then develops the greenish blue noise issue, you'll know you need the Tripplite box (and yet another cheap used VCR).
DigitalfreakNYC's Avatar DigitalfreakNYC 02:17 PM 05-07-2014
Quote:
Originally Posted by CitiBear View Post

I just checked, and it seems the TrippLite boxes are available again (for the moment). The current version of the one I had is this. Not sure this power box would cure your already-afflicted Panasonic DVD/VHS combo: my only experience was with older models, and the box was more a protective device for new VCRs than a cure for VCRs already affected.

Modern VCRs and combos draw much less power than older VCRs, so if you want to test you could try the less expensive 600w version of the Tripplite which runs about $70 on Amazon. But again, IDK if it can really do anything for your Panasonic combo deck. These line conditioners prevent damage to new hardware: they can't do much to reverse existing damage. Instead, you might try buying an external VCR and connect that to the DVD portion of your combo to make VHS dubs. Good quality, mint VCRs are easily found for $20-$30 on Craigs List and eBay (asking friends-family-coworkers often leads to free VCRs they don't want anymore). If the external VCR works great for awhile, then develops the greenish blue noise issue, you'll know you need the Tripplite box (and yet another cheap used VCR).

Thanks for the info. The other problem is that there's no guarantee that that's the problem either. frown.gif The thing that I liked about this is that it had the digital output that I was using for some audio captures....and it had HDMI out.

Argh. There's a place that got back to me and said that they service VCR's like mine. It's free to have them check it out...so I might bring it into the city and see what they say. frown.gif I guess it can't hurt, eh?
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