Disappointed with my Panasonic DMR-EH57 - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 12 Old 12-27-2007, 11:02 AM - Thread Starter
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I bought Panasonic DMR-EH57 last week and tried all recording modes and menu settings and here are the problems or disadvantages I found:

1- I faced this problem when I started to copy my old coloured VHS tape . My recorder shows strange colours which is close to black & white (in fact worse). In some periods, the colours appears for seconds and the strange colours appears again. When I plug my VCR directly to the TV, the colours appears perfectly !!

I tried different RCA cables (the regular brands). Do you think if I try an expensive brand, my problem will be solved? Or I need to try another recorder
And which one do you recommend?

I have many OLD VHS tapes and I feel I didn't get benefit from my Panasonic.


2- the second thing is lacking of saving edited part. I can only cut the selected area.


3- The lacking of auto chaptering. I can do it only if I change the copying mode from the original recording.



These are my 3 problems.
The first one is the most annoying problem. Please provide any solutions if you can.

I'm waiting for your replies.
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post #2 of 12 Old 12-27-2007, 11:44 AM
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Do you see it in a menu somewhere where you can activate a "digital comb filtering" sort of function while recording from composite input? Try recording a sample of your vhs with that enabled.

Experimenting with a fancy composite cable is your own prerogative, but I don't think it would really help your situation. A standard cable should work fine, and it would have to be a stellarly poor construction to not be able to transfer a signal properly within the performance constraints of a composite design.

The appearance/disappearance of strange colors could also be an analog copy protection system at work, as well. In that scenario, your tv is designed to properly lock into the signal for optimal display, but the recorder will not be able to "lock in" the signal, by design.

As for your point #3, I'm thinking the auto-chaptering function would come into play "if" you were recording direct to disc, rather than hdd (my apologies, if I am mistaken that the eh57 is an hdd model).

On point #2, this could actually be in direct conflict with point #3, depending on how you are actually making your recording. (You may be able to have one or the other, but not both at the same time. You might be able to do both, but it will require another "realtime" step, I'm guessing.)

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post #3 of 12 Old 12-27-2007, 12:58 PM
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I agree with the thought that may be the tapes are copy protected. Are they commercial tapes? If so you may need to buy one of the current filters. I personally have not used the EH-57, but I've done plenty of VHS to DVD conversions with my other Panny's, and the PQ of the DVD is almost always better than watching the tape direct.
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post #4 of 12 Old 12-27-2007, 01:23 PM
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This unit may be PAL by default and may require adjustment in the set up menu for NTSC compatability. I had this issue with a multistandard Pioneer DVD recorder.
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post #5 of 12 Old 12-27-2007, 02:55 PM - Thread Starter
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First of all, Thank you all for your replies.

The old VHS tapes I have are not copy protected. They are movies and shows that I recorded from tv long time ago.

The picture doesn't always have strange colors. Just in some positions where the source picture has (weak) colors, because the tape has been copied several times to VHS tapes and also played many times, so the colors became (let's say weak), but watchable clearly when I connect the VCR directly to the tv. I hope you understood what I mean.

Yes Mr. Hanky, the recorder has HDD and it's an international edition, it has both PAL and NTSC, but I use PAL system and all my tapes are recorded in PAL. And I set the (comb Filter) ON, but nothing changed.

I found a sony cable, but I'm not sure if this will solve the problem.

Sharp recorders have both (save and cut edited parts), I don't know about other recorders.

I'm still waiting for other opinions.
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post #6 of 12 Old 12-27-2007, 03:16 PM
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Why wouldn't you prefer to manually insert chapter marks at more precise points? It's very easy to do with the Pannies, once you've transferred to the hard drive.
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post #7 of 12 Old 12-27-2007, 04:55 PM - Thread Starter
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OK, I can live with the manual chaptering although it's difficult if the video is 4 hours or longer, but what about the picture problem? any suggestions?
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post #8 of 12 Old 12-27-2007, 05:33 PM
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I get chapter points recorded on my Panasonic dvdr's when I use Autocopy on dv input from my digital camcorder, a chapter between each camcorder STOP, but I've not heard of chapters automatically generated from s-video or composite input.

You've tried changing cables, so continuing a trial-and-error process of elimination, and they play good on tv-- have you tried a different vcr? (Just in case the tv tolerates a lower signal threshhold).

Does the problem show up on all your tapes?

Good Luck!
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post #9 of 12 Old 12-27-2007, 05:39 PM
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If I had to guess I'd say the synch signal coming off the tape is very weak. The TV is able to play it correctly, but the signal is not quite strong enough for the DVDR to record.
I also had some old tapes that were many generations old. I was getting less than desirable PQ going to the DVDR. Even though the tapes were also not CP'd, I used my Sima CT-2 copy device. I believe it recreates the vertical sync signal? Anyway using that device I was able to get better copy results to my DVD's.
I think it was one of the few legitimate uses for the CT-2. I also think the CT-2 would work for PAL. At least it has a switch on it for PAL, but I've never had a PAL tape, or multisystem TV to try it.
You could try to find one of those devices, I don't think there made anymore though. You could also try another brand DVDR, may be another brand would be able to record with a weaker sync signal? If that is indeed the issue. Good luck!
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post #10 of 12 Old 12-27-2007, 06:18 PM - Thread Starter
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Thank you RichardT.
I will try another VCR and see.
The problem shows up only with weak sync signal tapes (as jjeff discribed).

Thank you jjeff.
I have DVDExpress device, but it takes very much time to transfer and burn tapes to DVD. And it doesn't have TBC, so the DVD recorder is easier.

I can't return my Panasonic now since I bought it more than a week ago (The store won't return it after 7 days).
But if someone assures that certain recorder will transfer my old VHS tapes perfectly, I will buy it.
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post #11 of 12 Old 12-28-2007, 05:37 PM - Thread Starter
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I found the solution !!

I tried two other VCRs and three cables, but nothing changed.

I tried RF cable... no positive result

Then, I entered the tuning menu. The default setting of the system was (auto), I changed it to PAL then to SECAM and vuala...problem solved

My old programs was recorded in SECAM and I thought they were recorded in PAL. Now the digital transmission is in PAL.

I'm so happy now. I thank all the wonderful members who tried to help me. This is a great forum. I will participate and try to provide any info about my Panasonic if anyone wants to know about it.
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post #12 of 12 Old 12-29-2007, 10:59 PM
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Wow! Who would have thought to try that! Glad you found the solution, and thanks for reporting it. Happy rest-of-the-year, and have a Great 2008!

Richard
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