Jvc hr-s8000u s-vhs vcr (1988) - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 22 Old 11-14-2014, 08:51 AM - Thread Starter
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Jvc hr-s8000u s-vhs vcr (1988)

this machine.. seems peerless. it's got classiness to spare, cosmetically speaking, seems a virtually indestructible workhorse,
and has an amazing picture quality, for VHS. this has got to be the very best of the 1980's VHS VCRs,
and surely one of the best ever made in the history of the format. the JAMES BOND of VCRs, in my opinion anyway...

























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post #2 of 22 Old 11-15-2014, 12:14 AM
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Okay... and your point would be?

Luke

Evil is charming and beautiful. It makes you doubt yourself. It asks for one small compromise after another until it whittles you down, and it functions best when no one believes in it.-JOA
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post #3 of 22 Old 11-15-2014, 08:36 AM - Thread Starter
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i guess there is none...
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post #4 of 22 Old 11-15-2014, 09:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tasuke View Post
this machine [...]seems a virtually indestructible workhorse
Never, EVER say this out loud regarding any JVC product in your possession, *especially* one of their high-end vintage VCRs. Its like daring fate to make it self-destruct next week.

You are extremely fortunate to have laid hands on one of these in apparent brand-new condition with box and papers. That is utterly surreal: like finding a unicorn. If you bought it to make digital transfers of your VHS collection, begin the work immediately until you either finish or this VCR starts blowing its transport gears out the front slot (or more typically for this model series, partially erasing tapes as you play them). The HR-S8000 is a fabulous VCR in theory, but in durability, not so much. Unless one is very, very lucky.

Sending you a virtual rabbits foot...

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post #5 of 22 Old 11-15-2014, 09:41 AM - Thread Starter
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i was gifted this 8000U from a forum friend back in 2008. he bought it for me from an EBAY seller that claimed that he only ever used it to watch his Aviation tapes. it has seen hours upon hours of use from me since with seldom a glitch of any sort, except for it's occasional rejection of the odd newer (late-90's/early 2000's) era prerecorded cassette. i usually just had to reload it once or twice to get the deck to play nice with it.

more recently, however, the deck has developed this habit of randomly beginning playback in some sort of
high-speed PLAY with sped-up chipmunk audio. whenever it pulls this weirdness,

-ONLY occasionally, mind you, when i first load a cassette and hit PLAY-

- all i seem to need to do is to hit STOP and then PLAY again for it to return to it's usual normal operation...
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post #6 of 22 Old 11-15-2014, 01:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tasuke View Post
…the deck has developed this habit of randomly beginning playback in some sort of high-speed PLAY with sped-up chipmunk audio. whenever it pulls this weirdness,

-ONLY occasionally, mind you, when i first load a cassette and hit PLAY-

- all i seem to need to do is to hit STOP and then PLAY again for it to return to it's usual normal operation...

Is this happening with EP recorded tapes? If so it seems like the deck is trying to play them in SP speed. First thing I would do is clean the control track head. Or it could be the speed sensor going.

Regarding JVC VCRs I would never again buy a different brand of VHS/SVHS VCR. At the moment I have two SVHS JVC VCRs and both of then still work like brand new machines. One has probably ten million miles on it and I bet the other one is approaching the half a million mile mark. Did I mention both of them still work like brand new…
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post #7 of 22 Old 11-15-2014, 11:10 PM
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I owned the same model back in the day. Brought a returned model from the Army PX. I believe it cost me about $400.
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post #8 of 22 Old 11-16-2014, 02:56 PM
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The first VCR I bought was a JVC, bought at the Great Sounds electronics store at 15 Warren Street in downtown Manhattan. That unit also had wooden sides. From my experience with it, that wood must have come from the Demonwood tree. Later, I bought JVC recorders to take advantage of their flying erase heads, which allowed for seamless edits. My experience is that JVC took planned obsolescence to new heights when it engineered their VHS machines. JVCs will find a way to break down, whether with the tray loading mechanism going kaput, the tracking control going haywire or the machine just chewing up your tapes. When I bought my JVCs over the years, I never came across one review saying that JVC VCRs were crap. The JVC reviewers then must now have jobs with TV's nightly network news. The happy talk I read above about JVC VCRs will eventually vanish. Siegfried and Roy had a great run with their performing tigers, but eventually one of those tigers showed its true colors. Your JVC VCR will do likewise, it is the nature of this beast to self-destruct. Probably when you are playing back an irreplaceable tape the VCR will chew it up and spit it out. JVC VCRs are 100% reliable in jamming you in due time.
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post #9 of 22 Old 11-16-2014, 04:56 PM
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Why would someone be so dunce to keep buying a product over and over again – a product that he/she deems to be an unreliable piece of junk???

Back when I was a teenager I had a Ford Custom 500. Someone I knew

Told me:
“You’re crazy for getting that car”

I said:
“What do you mean?”

He said:
“Oh I bought a Ford with the same transmission and it blew within a few months.”

I said:
Oh I’m sorry to hear that. My tranny seems to be pretty tough. So what did you replace your Ford with?

Oh later I bought other fords with the same tranny to take advantage of the OverDrive, which allowed me to seamlessly pass other cars with great ease.

I said:
Oh?

He Said:
Ford transmissions are a piece of crap and eventually they will all break down. You will be driving someone in your custom 500 to the hospital and your tranny will break.

I said:
You’re an imbecile
(I’m a nice guy normally but I couldn’t help myself)
You crapped out your tranny, blamed the manufacture and kept buying that same tranny over and over again even after crapping out all your previous trannies. Now you have the nerve to tell me that my tranny will crap out even though I put on over 100,000 miles on my transmision and there is no sign of shimming, slippage, or clunking in my tranny???


----------------------
Sorry but memories came back - to this day I can’t help but wonder why someone would be stupid enough to keep buying a product over and over again – a product that he/she deems to be an unreliable piece of junk???
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post #10 of 22 Old 11-16-2014, 07:03 PM
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Champ, you are insane, a split personality, first claiming JVC VCRs are great, than insulting me because I bought more than one JVC VCR. I don't believe a word you said about the longevity of your JVC VCRs. As CitiBear has often noted, JVC VCRs internal works wear out and can be tough to repair. For a while, JVC's super VHS recording works very well. But keep your old machines and continue to record on VHS tapes while anyone with any brains would have switched over to recording on the Magnavox HDD DVD recorder.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Super Eye View Post
Regarding JVC VCRs I would never again buy a different brand of VHS/SVHS VCR. At the moment I have two SVHS JVC VCRs and both of then still work like brand new machines. One has probably ten million miles on it and I bet the other one is approaching the half a million mile mark. Did I mention both of them still work like brand new…
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post #11 of 22 Old 11-16-2014, 07:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gerrytwo View Post
Champ, you are insane, a split personality, first claiming JVC VCRs are great, than insulting me because I bought more than one JVC VCR.
Well I didn’t directly insult you that would be against AVS forum rules. I insulted the guy that kept buying the same car over again year after year after claiming that the car is a piece of crap. You gotta admit – kinda funny something only someone really dunce would do, no?

Another funny thing is telling someone:

Quote:
The happy talk I read above about JVC VCRs will eventually vanish. Your JVC VCR will do likewise, it is the nature of this beast to self-destruct. Probably when you are playing back an irreplaceable tape the VCR will chew it up and spit it out. JVC VCRs are 100% reliable in jamming you in due time.
Due in time?? We’re talking about a a 26-27 year old VCR.
Eventually the happy talk will vanish and his JVC will break down on him???
The VCR is 27 years old, champ.

OH for your info I no longer record on my JVC SVHS VCRs. For time shifting I use my Motorola DCX3400 PVR and for archiving I use my Sony RDR-HX780 HDD/DVD recorder. I do however often use my VCRs to play back my tapes, even though most of them are archived on DVD, Champ.

Everytime some newbie comes on here to show off his/her "almost 30 yr old vintage" piece of gear someone has to come on here and burn him/her down. Personally I'm getting pretty tired of this crap and the crappers responsible...

Last edited by Super Eye; 11-16-2014 at 08:01 PM.
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post #12 of 22 Old 11-19-2014, 07:17 AM - Thread Starter
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i have no idea how much my 8000U may or may not have been serviced before i came to possession of it,
-though it had showed no overt, obvious signs of ever being worked on when i first got it-
however, i figure that day after day, year after year of near-trouble-free operation from when i received it in 2008,
up to present day, is a pretty damned awesome track record for such a "notoriously troublesome" 25+ year-old model of VHS VCR...
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post #13 of 22 Old 11-19-2014, 10:16 AM
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Insults to other members, veiled or overt, do not further anyones point. We all have subjective opinions based on personal experience: averaging those reported experiences to arrive at reasonable expectations is what a forum is all about. Some hardware and software is almost universally praised for quality and reliability, because vast majority personal experiences have been positive. Others can be sharply divisive, because personal experience is not as consistent across the population. Neither is "right" or "wrong" - it is your personal experience, period, and reporting it here has value as part of an ongoing data spectrum. Bullying negativity or bullying boosterism, with no allowance for nuance, accomplishes nothing.

Super Eye has been using fairly recent midrange JVC SVHS models he picked up a few years ago at giveaway prices from an overstock dealer. This model series (HR-S59xx) is widely considered the most reliable vcr JVC ever sold. So if you own one, odds are good you will enjoy them long-term without incident.

Those who have bought, owned and used JVCs from the purported "golden age" of the 1980s will report more mixed experience. Some have never had an issue, while others such as gerrytwo and myself had no end of grief, JVC vcr after JVC vcr (the worst being the models that came with 'skinny-button" remotes, like the HR-S8000U). Obviously if you've suffered greatly thru several defective JVCs (and lost your hard-earned money buying them new back in the day at $400-$700 a pop), you will have misgivings about recommending them now as ancient players for a digitizing project.

Lets address a common "insult" - why did we keep buying JVC vcrs over and over when each time the result was disaster? Answer: because in the1980s, there was often no other option on the table. Year after year, JVC was the only brand with the crucial flying erase head feature available in at least two models at different price points. If you were the type who needed to do a lot of editing, flying erase was essential, so you put up with potential JVC pitfalls. Also, at the time, JVC was the only brand that included ALL of the enhancement features of the now-forgotten "VHS HQ" spec. It made a big difference in standard VHS recording quality, esp dubbing, so again if you wanted it: you rolled the dice with JVC. Maybe you got lucky, maybe you didn't, but even if you didn't, the more obsessive among us felt the few good months we got out of a JVC justified the aggravation and expense when it croaked. After a couple honest repairmen admitted the funky defects could never be completely dialed out after onset, I took to just dumping them when they broke and putting the repair money into the next new JVC.

As to why we continue to post this experience today: well, newbies are still seeking out these ancient VCRs based on reputation of their TBC/DNR feature (hoping it will give them an advantage in digitizing their VHS). A newcomer who casually skims ten year old VCR>DVD threads may not realize: that vaunted TBC/DNR feature did not exist in a vacuum- it came attached to prima-dona, one-off, flakey, top-of-the-line VCRs that were often the most problematic of any particular brand. The midrange and low-end models were mass produced with consistent simplified parts, the high end were all over the place with inconsistent QC. An issue, BTW, not limited to JVC: Panasonic, Toshiba, Hitachi and Mitsubishi all had their struggles with high-strung top-line VCRs (don't even ask about Sony SVHS- yikes). The old high-end JVC SVHS and similar Panasonic AG1980 are aging out, many you see trading hands today have been used to death by five owners before you who had their own dubbing projects. The eBay feeding frenzy for these models from 2002-2008 had to be seen to be believed.

The available supply of fully-operational top-line JVC and Panasonic VCRs with TBC/DNR has dwindled to almost nothing, which means potential purchasers really do need to consider both positive and negative feedback from owners. These are very old units which were not designed to last decades, at least not without proper servicing and replacement parts, which are incredibly scarce now. So don't overpay for an old VCR, just because it has a great PQ rep in old threads: chances are are the seller has beaten it to death and it will need repairs you may not be able to source or afford. If you MUST have the TBC/DNR feature, look for the much newer and more reliable JVC and Mitsubishi "DVHS" models instead of the older SVHS. The DVHS units are not discussed much because they were not well marketed or publicized: they have roughly the same playback quality as older SVHS models with more reliable mechanics / electronics. They cost about the same or perhaps slightly more as "legendary" SVHS vcrs, but with much better odds of getting a good functional low-miles sample.

In regards to this PARTICULAR thread by Tasuke (and his other one about the Mitsubishi HS-U80): they could be (and were) easily misunderstood as displaying recent purchases off eBay with a request for comment on their usefulness for making DVD dubs. That is why some of us posted our mixed experience with a suggestion to do the work as soon as possible in case of eventual breakdown. It was only after multiple responses that Tasuke clarified these threads are simply "VCR porn" showing off miraculously mint-in-box ancient VCRs he purchased years ago, and just now decided to post on AVS for our entertainment.

Nothing at all wrong with that, and the photos are sensational. But future threads of this nature should make clear the intent is display only, not a request for owner experiences in a digitizing task. May you have many more years good luck with your prizes, Tasuke!
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Last edited by CitiBear; 11-19-2014 at 10:31 AM.
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post #14 of 22 Old 11-19-2014, 04:34 PM
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I’m glad that you’re still here with us Tasuke. In the past many good folks like you were driven away from here – just for displaying their vintage gear in good faith.

I have no idea were some of these folks get their ideas and why they speak for me. For instance I bought my JVC HR-S3911U locally brand new. I bought my JVC HR-5911U locally used off craigslist. So again I have no idea why someone is spreading misconceptions about me claiming that I bought my VCRs from some overstock dealer. There is someone that for the last few years has been selling JVC SVHS VCRs out of Texas, (not an overstock dealer but a private seller that somehow got a hold of hundreds of used JVC SVHS machines from some hotel chain or something.) Get this Tasuke, the guy from Texas sold over three hundred of these JVC decks and the buyers, 99.999 percent of the buyers are publicly reporting that these decade + old decks they bought off this Texan still work great. Yet the people above will try to make an excuse saying things like these buyers don’t know a damn thing. Search the threads and see for yourself. BTW, in case you’re wondering I’m no were near Texas, I’m a couple thousand miles northwest from Texas...

Tasuke when I joined this forum and posted my gear, this same person awoke like a bear from hibernation and started telling me that my midrange line JVC SVHS will self destruct within’ a month. A few years later when I mentioned my deck is still working like new he said it’s a fluke – it’s only my deck and all other JVC decks will self destruct – like he told you regarding your deck in this thread. (same line for a new poster in a new thread) Then when I said Oh but I now have a 3911 and a 5911 and they both work great there was silence for a while and then I started being accused of lying. Kinda like the other guy is accusing me now – see post #10 in this thread.

The fact is that its near impossible to show off your vintage gear at this place because someone will come here and try and burn you down - either accuse you of selling something or lying about something. If the above anti-JVC poster claims to have had so many JVC VCRs on his bench and claims to know so much about JVC VCRs then please tell me how come he didn’t even know a simple fact like the measurement of the SP heads? Jesus, I worked around broadcast gear for nearly 4-decades and every real tech I ever talked to knows that VTR head replacement and head alignment is one of the most performed tasks and this above guy doesn’t even have a clue about the SP head width these JVC decks have – he will insist that they use EP heads for SP even though not one JVC four-head SVHS deck ever used EP heads for SP recordings ever. So go ahead above poster – you keep buying a new JVC VCR year after year and keep trashing ‘em and see what others will think of your smart decision-making.

Future newbies trying to show off their perfectly working VCRs should be forewarned – some self described know-it-all will come on here and try to insult you and your gear and in fact will disgrace this whole forum. Tell me how this forum benefits when you show off a 25 plus year old vintage piece of gear that appears in pristine condition and than someone will tell you that your 25 plus year old deck will self destruct any second now - look up the definition “Internet Toll”.
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post #15 of 22 Old 11-19-2014, 05:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CitiBear View Post
Insults to other members, veiled or overt, do not further anyones point. We all have subjective opinions based on personal experience: averaging those reported experiences to arrive at reasonable expectations is what a forum is all about. Some hardware and software is almost universally praised for quality and reliability, because vast majority personal experiences have been positive. Others can be sharply divisive, because personal experience is not as consistent across the population. Neither is "right" or "wrong" - it is your personal experience, period, and reporting it here has value as part of an ongoing data spectrum. Bullying negativity or bullying boosterism, with no allowance for nuance, accomplishes nothing.

Super Eye has been using fairly recent midrange JVC SVHS models he picked up a few years ago at giveaway prices from an overstock dealer. This model series (HR-S59xx) is widely considered the most reliable vcr JVC ever sold. So if you own one, odds are good you will enjoy them long-term without incident.

Those who have bought, owned and used JVCs from the purported "golden age" of the 1980s will report more mixed experience. Some have never had an issue, while others such as gerrytwo and myself had no end of grief, JVC vcr after JVC vcr (the worst being the models that came with 'skinny-button" remotes, like the HR-S8000U). Obviously if you've suffered greatly thru several defective JVCs (and lost your hard-earned money buying them new back in the day at $400-$700 a pop), you will have misgivings about recommending them now as ancient players for a digitizing project.

Lets address a common "insult" - why did we keep buying JVC vcrs over and over when each time the result was disaster? Answer: because in the1980s, there was often no other option on the table. Year after year, JVC was the only brand with the crucial flying erase head feature available in at least two models at different price points. If you were the type who needed to do a lot of editing, flying erase was essential, so you put up with potential JVC pitfalls. Also, at the time, JVC was the only brand that included ALL of the enhancement features of the now-forgotten "VHS HQ" spec. It made a big difference in standard VHS recording quality, esp dubbing, so again if you wanted it: you rolled the dice with JVC. Maybe you got lucky, maybe you didn't, but even if you didn't, the more obsessive among us felt the few good months we got out of a JVC justified the aggravation and expense when it croaked. After a couple honest repairmen admitted the funky defects could never be completely dialed out after onset, I took to just dumping them when they broke and putting the repair money into the next new JVC.

As to why we continue to post this experience today: well, newbies are still seeking out these ancient VCRs based on reputation of their TBC/DNR feature (hoping it will give them an advantage in digitizing their VHS). A newcomer who casually skims ten year old VCR>DVD threads may not realize: that vaunted TBC/DNR feature did not exist in a vacuum- it came attached to prima-dona, one-off, flakey, top-of-the-line VCRs that were often the most problematic of any particular brand. The midrange and low-end models were mass produced with consistent simplified parts, the high end were all over the place with inconsistent QC. An issue, BTW, not limited to JVC: Panasonic, Toshiba, Hitachi and Mitsubishi all had their struggles with high-strung top-line VCRs (don't even ask about Sony SVHS- yikes). The old high-end JVC SVHS and similar Panasonic AG1980 are aging out, many you see trading hands today have been used to death by five owners before you who had their own dubbing projects. The eBay feeding frenzy for these models from 2002-2008 had to be seen to be believed.

The available supply of fully-operational top-line JVC and Panasonic VCRs with TBC/DNR has dwindled to almost nothing, which means potential purchasers really do need to consider both positive and negative feedback from owners. These are very old units which were not designed to last decades, at least not without proper servicing and replacement parts, which are incredibly scarce now. So don't overpay for an old VCR, just because it has a great PQ rep in old threads: chances are are the seller has beaten it to death and it will need repairs you may not be able to source or afford. If you MUST have the TBC/DNR feature, look for the much newer and more reliable JVC and Mitsubishi "DVHS" models instead of the older SVHS. The DVHS units are not discussed much because they were not well marketed or publicized: they have roughly the same playback quality as older SVHS models with more reliable mechanics / electronics. They cost about the same or perhaps slightly more as "legendary" SVHS vcrs, but with much better odds of getting a good functional low-miles sample.

In regards to this PARTICULAR thread by Tasuke (and his other one about the Mitsubishi HS-U80): they could be (and were) easily misunderstood as displaying recent purchases off eBay with a request for comment on their usefulness for making DVD dubs. That is why some of us posted our mixed experience with a suggestion to do the work as soon as possible in case of eventual breakdown. It was only after multiple responses that Tasuke clarified these threads are simply "VCR porn" showing off miraculously mint-in-box ancient VCRs he purchased years ago, and just now decided to post on AVS for our entertainment.

Nothing at all wrong with that, and the photos are sensational. But future threads of this nature should make clear the intent is display only, not a request for owner experiences in a digitizing task. May you have many more years good luck with your prizes, Tasuke!
Citibear, when I read some of your scathing reviews of JVC VCRs, I thought, those JVC defects you described were exactly the same as I encountered. Super Eye's lame defense of his flaming comments was that I said something mean about Tasuke. I didn't do that. His pictures of the JVC VCR look great. I was just letting him know of my experiences. At first, JVC VCRs do work fine. Super Eye, after claiming his JVC VCRs are working fine, now says he or she doesn't use them at all. Tough to wear out a VCR if you don't use it. I now have only a Panasonic VHS player / Blu-ray player with HDMI outputs (DMP-BD70V) that Panasonic only sold for two years, through 2010. The VHS player on this combination unit works great but came out just as VHS technology became a memory for almost all consumers. I paid $140 at Amazon for it, a clearance price, but these multimedia units have vanished, now selling used for $1,000. For some people, bit torrent download sites like Torrentday have taken over the role of VHS recorders in time shifting recording of TV shows. For others, cableco set top boxes or streaming video sites like Hulu handle time shifting playback of TV shows. For a tiny niche minority, there are DVD HDD recorders. For even a smaller set of users, there is still the VCR recorder. And in the final microscopic set here is Super Eye, the self styled hallway monitor who is very common in the outside world. Classless human beings who get a thrill from anonymously insulting strangers.
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post #16 of 22 Old 11-20-2014, 08:22 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CitiBear View Post
It was only after multiple responses that Tasuke clarified these threads are simply "VCR porn" showing off miraculously mint-in-box ancient VCRs he purchased years ago, and just now decided to post on AVS for our entertainment..

sorry about the misunderstanding. to be clear, this JVC was gifted to me by a good Forum friend from over on "TAPEHEADS"
back in 2008 or so. not long afterwords, he bought himself a copy of this same model, but it had issues right off the bat, and he has yet to get it serviced.

my own, incidentally, has been nothing short if a total champ to this very day, so Luck of the Draw i guess.

this example came with just the VCR and it's remote, all it's other accessories and paraphernalia i had to track down in the interim years.
guess i was lucky, as it did not take too long to find most of it.

the MITSUBISHI HS-U80 i am currently enamored with i acquired much more recently, just a couple weeks ago in fact.
i've been putting it through a vetting process, using up those 40 S-VHS it came with, recording 1-2 per day,
and while the VCR is a somewhat inferior performer to the 8000U, it has been chugging along with aplomb so far,
with not even a single malfunction yet...
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post #17 of 22 Old 08-04-2015, 12:46 PM
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Is the original remote for the 8000 the one pictured above?

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Tom

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post #18 of 22 Old 01-16-2016, 01:55 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Monahan View Post
Is the original remote for the 8000 the one pictured above?

Thanks,
Tom
this is it, model no. PQ10607B. the original panel door hinges are prone to breakage, so i've replaced mine
with essentially indestructible homebrew hinges;






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post #19 of 22 Old 07-10-2016, 12:26 PM - Thread Starter
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HR-S8000U S-VHS as featured in 2015 Film "Joy"


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post #20 of 22 Old 07-10-2016, 04:07 PM
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Ouch, a 20 inch (maybe bigger) CRT on top of the VCR.
I know it’s only a movie but some folks are stupid enough to actually do that in real life.
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post #21 of 22 Old 07-11-2016, 10:07 AM - Thread Starter
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indeed, no VCR deserves such abuse, lest of not which a virtually peerless deck such as the HR-S8000U...

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post #22 of 22 Old 10-23-2016, 07:06 PM
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I just bought a working specimen for a good reason: I had to fill a void in my "silver and wood" rack system! I have about 20 Hi-Fi tapes of an audio only music show I recorded in 1992-4 off the radio. I used a 1990 Sanyo VHR9431 deck that I just recapped and got working again (perfectly, but no remote so no tape speed change) but its black and I really like the wood sides of this JVC unit...plus it has VU meters for further taping radio programs... Looking forward to trying it out.
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