I tried to copy an ON DEMAND Comcast show and my VCR is messed up, what happened? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 02-10-2008, 06:55 PM - Thread Starter
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Hello. My problem may be too low tech for this forum, but I hoped that if you cannot comment directly perhaps you could suggest a different approach. I have Comcast digital cable and I use a (blush) VCR to tape some programs. I attempted to tape an ON DEMAND show. Of course the resulting tape was scrambled. Fine, but now ALL recording is scrambled. Even some tapes recorded long ago are unplayable. Comcast so far has been no help. Ideas? Thanks!
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post #2 of 10 Old 02-10-2008, 07:44 PM
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Well this can't be too hard of a problem to figure out this is not my expertise but I will gladly try to help out. First off is the setup, make sure the cable box is going into the vcr and the vcr is going to the tv. Recording make sure you select what line in input that you are recording and not the actual tv channel. I did this before and got snow for 2 hours. Of course that was back in the day before I had DVR. Plus the recorded show must be on that channel and the cable box must be on. Now that is if you are running composite or S-video. Now if you are using coax and have a vcr with vcr plus then you should be able to record the analog shows with no problem the digital shows will not work. If I was you I would just invest the each 5 bucks to get the cable box with DVR. Once you go DVR there is nothing else!!! I would be dead to the world if I didn't have a DVR now.
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post #3 of 10 Old 02-11-2008, 11:42 AM
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I tried to copy an ON DEMAND Comcast show and my VCR is messed up, what happened?

Did you change any connections?
Did you change settings on the VCR??
Give some more details and I will try to help.
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post #4 of 10 Old 02-13-2008, 04:03 AM - Thread Starter
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Thank you. No settings were changed, no connections were changed. Comcast must send a scrambling signal to the vcr, and it has not gone away.
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post #5 of 10 Old 02-17-2008, 10:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alan892 View Post

Thank you. No settings were changed, no connections were changed. Comcast must send a scrambling signal to the vcr, and it has not gone away.


Connect your VCR to another TV if you can (S-vid, composite or RF to channel 3) and try an old tape. If it is scrambled the likelyhood is that your VCR has failed.

AFIK Comcast has no ability to send a "scrambling" signal that would change your VCR.

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post #6 of 10 Old 02-17-2008, 12:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alan892 View Post

Thank you. No settings were changed, no connections were changed. Comcast must send a scrambling signal to the vcr, and it has not gone away.

No such signal.
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post #7 of 10 Old 02-17-2008, 01:37 PM
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Aren't most of the On Demand programs copy protected? Also, they are all digital, and a VCR won't record digital programs. I am assuming the VCR is directly connected to the Comcast box somehow...
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post #8 of 10 Old 02-17-2008, 03:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ekaxel View Post

Aren't most of the On Demand programs copy protected? Also, they are all digital, and a VCR won't record digital programs. I am assuming the VCR is directly connected to the Comcast box somehow...

Through analog inputs a VCR will have no problem recording what is coming from a cable box.
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post #9 of 10 Old 02-17-2008, 05:08 PM
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Can't a cable company send Macrovision copy protection to prevent analog recording? If you left it recording a Macrovision encoded signal for 2 hours you might have fried the automatic gain control.

How can we say "the digital transition is complete" when thousands of low power stations are still broadcasting in analog?
LOW POWER ANALOG NEEDS TO DIE NOW!!!
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post #10 of 10 Old 02-18-2008, 08:15 AM
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If you can't play a previously working tape on another TV, then you probably clogged the heads and the timing is incidental. (or the VCR just broke on it's own) The AGC in on the input only, not the output. (and it's actually taking advantage of poorly designed VHS electronics - Beta rarely had any problem with Macrovision due to it's superior video processing circuits)

While Macrovision has been seen on HBO and other analog premium channels, digital usually uses flags that newer VCRs (post year 2000) and recording devices detect and just stop recording. Since they have to pay for each use of Macrovision (licensed), it's use is not that common (as I understand it - no personal experience since my recorders don't recognise either protection method)

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