Quantcast ATI TV Wonder USB 2.0 works, power supply issue - digitalFAQ Forum
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09-15-2017, 07:32 PM
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I wanted to let people know this before they threw one out.

The ATI TV Wonder USB 2.0 device works perfectly fine on Windows 7 x32 with the drivers from the cdrom.

I tested it with Virtual Dub 1.9 x32

The issue I had before was not that the device was broken or not working, it was that (a) it came with a power supply I cannot verify it was designed to work with (b) the second unit I acquired came sealed in its original box and had a different (more powerful) power supply.

The first unit would only produce a [green] raster and would frequently go offline or report to the operating system that something was wrong with the driver with a yellow triangle in device manager.

I thought it was damaged by heat or something.

The second unit immediately produced an image in Windows Media Encoder, then I transitioned to Virtual Dub and made captures.

The back of the ATI TV Wonder USB 2.0 only lists the Voltage required and Polarity of the connector from the power supply.

The unidentified power supply provided 600 mA
The verified to work power supply provided 1.66 A

So the non-working power supply provided the correct Voltage and Polarity but (not enough) amperage.

I'll learn how to post video samples soon, but the picture is beautiful, just what you would expect from a Theater 200 chip.

And it captures audio at the same time, extra external sound card not necessary.

Virtual Dub 1.9 seems to be picking up a VBI line but not decoding it properly and produces a "pop" sound in the audio track at regular intervals. Windows Media Encoder 9 does not do this.

I also could not get MMC 9.08 TV software to work on Windows 7 x32 it says it cannot start the tuner.. but since its is analog.. no great loss.

I was quite surprised to try the new power supply with the old ATI TV Wonder USB 2.0 (that I thought) did not work, and it performed exactly as well as the second one I had acquired.

Don't throw these out

I have attached a picture of the two (different) power supplies below.

The one that (does not provide enough power to the ATI TV Wonder USB 2.0) is on the Left.
The one that (does provide enough power to the ATI TV Wonder USB 2.0) is on the Right.
The one that works has model number: PSM11R-060

Some are available on Amazon or eBay but the model seems obsolete from the original manufacturer.

The dimensions from Digikey for the connector are:
Barrel Plug, 2.1mm I.D. x 5.5mm O.D. x 9.5mm

I do not have a direct source to point at but if you match both the Voltage, Amperage and Polarity of the connector you should be good to go. I found some 2 Amp replacements but nothing at exactly 1.66 A which is ok, the device will only use what it needs with respect to amperage, but an under powered supply can't provide enough amperage to properly drive the device.

Since USB 2.0 ports are limited to 500 mA this also explains the reason they had to provide a power supply with the ATI TV Wonder USB 2.0 (its also a less noisy and more stable way of powering the device).

To be clear, the power supply on the Left (did not) properly power the ATI TV Wonder 2.0 USB device.

The power supply on the Right (did) properly power (both) the original unit I acquired and the one it came with today.

Be careful !

Label your Power Supply !!

6 volts is an uncommon voltage
most are either 5 volts or 12 volts (many) connectors look the same

12 volts would probably destroy the device

(ha) I may have had the composite signal RCA connector in the Left audio input port.. if that was it, then the audible "pop" was probably the VBI on the audio channel


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File Type: jpg IMG_20170915_193949.jpg (72.4 KB, 6 downloads)
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File Type: jpg IMG_20170915_195728.jpg (48.1 KB, 5 downloads)
File Type: png vlcsnap-2017-09-15-20h13m38s505.png (473.8 KB, 7 downloads)

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Last edited by jwillis84; 09-15-2017 at 08:30 PM.
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  #2  
09-15-2017, 08:50 PM
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Nope it was Overlay vs Preview in Virtual Dub.

I had it set to Overlay and that introduced the audible and visible "pop" in the video stream.

When I disabled Overlay and switched to Preview. The "pop" went away.

The snapshot is without any TBC or DNR at all.

My current vcr is a JVC HR-S5902U which doesn't have those, and I didn't have the TBC-1000 plugged in for the test.

Also WDM and VFW modes in Virtual Dub didn't work for me, I had to select (DirectShow) and that worked.

The Tuner apparently works as well, it autotunes and switches channels, but nothing is on.. how could I tell? mostly static but the raster was different for each analog channel. Since the change over to Digital in 2009 this is no surprise.

-- merged --

Curious
Another data point.

In the ATI TV Wonder 650 USB - User Guide page 3
It says: "Connect the AC power adapater to the 6 V DC connection located on the back of the TV Wonder 650"

Important: Use only the model PSM11R-060 adapter included with your TV Wonder 650

That is the [same] model power supply that [did] work with the ATI TV Wonder USB 2.0

And on eBay I did find that model power supply, also curiously, these wall adapters were in boxes labeled as ATI power adapters.

This is becoming a virtuous circle of re-enforcement.

That model power supply was obviously important to the ATI USB products from at least the TV Wonder USB 2.0 to the TV Wonder 650 USB 2.0 capture devices, probably because at the time they were some of the highest Amperage switching power supplies available in a compact wall adapter.

-- merged --

Tips for running ATI MMC 8.9 on Windows 7 x32

I am all over the map right now trying things with XP and Windows, and XP in VMware on Windows x64.. so its a mess.

But I wanted to offer a few quick non-obvious tips.

First when installing ATI MMC or individual packages (be sure) to copy them to your hard drive and (modify) their compatibility [Tab] when you right-click and ask for their Properties page.

This has to be done [super individually with tenacious care] the Installer is InstallShield and its a vintage that came from Windows SP1 days, so it expects things that often will crash the installer, even when running on XP.

The Installer can also run "other" installers like .msi packages and they will [NOT] inherit the "Compatibility" rights and support granted to the starting program. This isn't like starting a "shell" on Unix and running things by the "grace" of the ran as user.

All that matters, All that counts.. is the Compatiblity mode assigned "like a right" under Windows to the file object. When it starts, the operating system pays attention to that.. it doesn't care who started the program or the compatibility mode of the program that start it.

[This is Super Important !!]

After install ATI MMC smears a bastion of programs around in the file system.. none-of-them .. have any "Compatibility" mode rights or support assigned to them.

Some like the launcher "kind of" start up.. and sort of launch.. but frequently die later apparently without warning.

TVDS.DLL is a frequent party crasher

Its used by things like the ATI TV program, you have to manually "visit" each program in the file system and anonit it with the "Compatibility" mode rights and support, generally XP-SP3 works for me.

For some crazy reason, the crossbar settings for the video proc in the Settings/Config window for ATI MMC are [all] unique and individual.. and set to (zero).. you know this because [contrast] and [brightness] are "set to zero" when switching to [s-video] or [composite].. everytime you switch.. you start out with them all set to [zero] and a blank/black screen.. raise them and you will immediately see the screen video appear out of the darkness. And the Tint and Saturation are also set to zero.. so orange martian goo isn't the actual color of whatever is coming out of your vcr.. its the default setting for the video processing properties page for the crossbar input source.

The Settings page where you change the video window size, tiny, small, medium, large, custom - does not apply any selection change until you switch away to a different Settings tab page.. then its applied.. snap

The Setting page where you change the video input source or the video proc settings are immediate and responsive to twiddling knobs.. which is counter intuitive when you compare fiddling with the video window size page.

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09-16-2017, 11:12 PM
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You're taking on the impossible task of force-installing ATI AIW in Windows Vista/7/8/10
And then trying to use the quirky USB version Theatre chipset.

I want you to have success at this. I doubt you will! But one can hope.

I tried the former for years, and had extremely mixed results. Trying to replicate was often impossible.
The latter, the USB, is newer to me as well. Yet I've had no luck with it.

The main capture system is down right now. I've added a HDD, and will install XP SP2 tonight. We'll see what happens.

My main concern with the USB AIW card is that's it runs really hot.
Really, really hot!
Like unsafe to leave near wood/paper/etc hot!

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09-17-2017, 12:30 AM
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I completely agree it runs hot ! ! ! waay to Hot !

I found it was a simple thing to poke a hole in the label on the back and unscrew the single wood screw holding the plastic together and remove the card.. with no damage to the case. It just sort of all fell apart into pieces like a kit of parts.

Then I put a USB computer fan on top of it, its USB just because.. it could have been anything.

[see: picture attached below]

And then it stays really, really cool to the touch.

The case is just the worst piece of thermal engineering I have ever seen.

After that however its of no concern at all.. its just a computer card attached by a USB port.

I am thinking it needs a new heatsink and case design to make it much more comfortable to use.

Dissasembly however is incredibly simple.. no plastic locking tabs.. nothing.

After the [warning] about properly setting the Compatibility "rights & support" above on both the Installer, Expanded subinstallers, and Actual programs "after" install. I have not had a single crash from any of them.

The programs work fast, fluid and with no problems.

What really annoys me however are the [defaults] for a lot of the settings.. they are wacko.. to put a nice spin on them. They seem designed to make you think the device is DOA from the factory.. but its not. Just reset (don't use "their" RESET button it sets them back to factory default wacko settings) them to sensible settings.. like they should have been defaulted to and it seems very reliable.

Another [Tip] is the Aspect ratio and Zoom (pan) handle feature that doesn't seem documented.

You can [Zoom] with a black box that appears dynamically [on the TV or Video image] and it also lets you [pan] with a little popup hand instead of any arrow.. but you can very easily do this accidentally and get the window [cropped] when you didn't know you did it.

The Aspect ratio can also be greyed out by accident and lock you out of the crop and ability to change the aspect ratio of the pixels.. very very annoying. Getting them back has been a bit of an accident so far.. so I don't know reliably how to get it into and out of that mode.. lots of "hidden" features in the user interface. -- I sadly suspect its greyed out "by default" and getting it out of sad default with them greyed out and into a sensible "normal" state of not-greyed out is the trick.

I did learn the [Performance] settings can reliability disable your ability to change the video proc setting per composite/s-video/tvtuner set them too low and they are greyed out, set them back up to normal or above and they are un-greyed and usable again.

This thing just really needs a new thermal box with a fan, sensible default settings for the software and a truly good user manual.

Together the hardware and the software are "phenomenal" but the delivered box and software defaults and "lack of good documentation" seem its vulnerable spot. I fear this may have been the problem with the company products across the board at the time. Its over engineered with features and abilities and someone tried to "slim it down" to not overwhelm ordinary consumers. Then tech support either didn't materialize or something happened.. old forums went with questions unanswered.. as if tech support were not there or (Maybe) were busy working on new products?


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  #5  
09-17-2017, 12:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jwillis84 View Post
The verified to work power supply provided 1.66 A
Correct.

The OEM supply is
model number: PSM11R-060
input: 100-240V ~ 0.3A 50-60Hz
output: 6V 16A
polarity is center positive: (+) -- o)) -- (-)

Quote:
I also could not get MMC 9.08 TV software to work on Windows 7 x32 it says it cannot start the tuner.. but since its is analog.. no great loss.
No. Wrong.

This is a huge loss! Without ATI MMC, the card is neutered. You lose the ability to capture as MPEG, including 15mbps (semi-archival!) Blu-ray spec. It's just another AVI-only USB card, and you may as well grab a ATI 600 USB, Tevion, etc. Granted, ATI Theatre chips do have superior color values, but still. To me, it's such a waste to only use 50% of the card.

Quote:
Be careful !
Label your Power Supply !!
12 volts would probably destroy the device
Good advice in general.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jwillis84 View Post
Nope it was Overlay vs Preview in Virtual Dub.
I had it set to Overlay and that introduced the audible and visible "pop" in the video stream.
When I disabled Overlay and switched to Preview. The "pop" went away.
I hate not being able to use overlay for preview. The "preview" mode has various problems, most notably lag.

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09-17-2017, 12:52 AM
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I've learned since about using Compatibility on files like a "rubber stamp" use it liberally, use it everywhere.. and it seems to make things work that caused me a lot of problems in the past.

TV Tuner works perfectly now.

Green screen.. which I think was both a symptom of using the [wrong] power supply, and an overheated box, and not using Compatibility mode.. have now been solved. The problem has not come back.

I am not certain about the Overlay problem of Virtual Dub on Windows 7 x32 I suspect it could also be a Compatibility mode problem. VD seems to expect a lot of feature or abilities that Windows Vista and 7 locked down.. making it run in Compatibility mode seems to "free" it up and it runs much faster.

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09-17-2017, 01:05 AM
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Did you install and use ATI MMC? (TV icon)

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09-17-2017, 01:11 AM
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Although I am very new to this.

I have made a test recording running ATI MMC 8.9 and in the mpeg2 mode.

[see: attached video]

I see what you mean about the TV Tuner being the gateway to choosing MPEG2 or MPEG4 encoding.

Didn't so much as sniffle.. but I did have lots of unpredictable problems [before] I worked out the powers supply, cooling and compatibility modes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
Did you install and use ATI MMC? (TV icon)
Yes Its working now.. the shortcuts in the menus call different programs in the file system for different functions.

I had to trace down all the runnable executables in the ATI MMC directories and tag them as must be run in Compatibility mode.. small pain.. but the result is rock solid stability since.

The one thing I wish/would like to do.. is access the Win7x32 box from my main Win7x64 box over microsoft rdp, but so far I can see everything "except" the video in the MMC video box. That is I can setup and manipuate all of the controls, but can't see the results over an RDP session.

I may eventually figure it out, or not.. but this "poor mans" kvm over the network could be nice.


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09-17-2017, 01:18 AM
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BTW, I have an HP laptops that I refer to as my "portable studio", so I capture tapes on-site. All I need is the laptop, a green AVT-8710, and a SR-V10. This ATI AIW USB is the first USB card that's ever failed on it. It runs Windows XP SP3, and it causes a hard fault that locks up the system.

^ This was the main reason I ever bought the card.

But it was failing on other desktops as well. All of those were XP SP2.

Currently installing 7 x86 on spare drive. If you can do, I should be able to also!

BTW: You have rolling interference in that blue screen video.

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09-17-2017, 01:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
Currently installing 7 x86 on spare drive. If you can do, I should be able to also!
Well.. far be it from me to encourage you..

But I think you will be able to...

I haven't codified all this into a [guide] but don't forget to disable driver signature verification and run the operation system in test mode.

There's still a lot of details to document to make sure this is a reliable system for daily use.

I think that it is.. and it will be something you and anyone can use.. but working out which steps are unnecessary and overkill.. are still down the road.

The big wins the last couple of nights are (a) it works and (b) it was a combo of hardware and software and cooling glitches

Quote:
Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
BTW, I have an HP laptops that I refer to as my "portable studio", so I capture tapes on-site. All I need is the laptop, a green AVT-8710, and a SR-V10.
BTW nice kit

-- merged --

Rolling video.. lol.. its raw feed straight from the vcr over a dubious cable. I wasn't exactly being careful with the signal.

The thing I like about this development.. which I was (not) expecting.
Are that its based on the ATI Theater 200 chip
Are that is based on a 12 bit ADC
Are that its based on a video decoder that includes the audio
Are that a separate sound card isn't needed
Are that its over USB 2.0 (not USB 1.0 like the older ATI version)
Are that the MPEG2 encoding is done on whatever CPU is in the computer
Are that you don't have to do lossey capture, you can do lossless
Its not as small as a typical 550 or 650 dongle, or any of the emPIA based dongles
But for the extra quality carrying a separate power supply around is a small penalty
And its a bit more future proof than PCI/AGP/PCIe cards

.. I'm even encouraged that a virtual machine with a USB bridge running a 32 bit OS might be able to do this on a 64 bit OS like Windows 10

I'm going to turn in for the night. I hope you get yours working too..
I'd really like to hear about your results.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jwillis84 View Post
I'm going to turn in for the night. I hope you get yours working too..
I'd really like to hear about your results.
Still headed off to bed.. but my mind is full of details now.. to empty a few.
Don't forget to disable UAC mode as well, and [future] planning

Compatibility mode is set per program by a registry entry, described in Option 3 at this website
https://www.sevenforums.com/tutorial...lity-mode.html

Should be possible to write a batch file or powershell script to recurse a directory looking for executable files and [auto-tag] or write them as entries into the registry.

It might also be possible to simply [export] the reg_key with all the [known] programs that do exist (or will) exist after they are unpacked by the InstallShield program and [pre-add] them to the registry.. so that when the Driver and App installer actually "run" they will already be identified as needing to be run in Compatiblity mode

So for example:

Step 1: run the reg.bat file that adds the Compatibility "import" procedure that "preps" the Win7 x32 or Win10 x32 system to [accept] and install the XP version of the ATI MMC

Step 2: proceed to run the XP installers as you normally would under XP, the underlying Win7 x32 or Win10 x32 would then "know" what to expect and ensure there are no errors during installation

Step 3: run wacko-default upgrade.bat file to pre-configure the settings in ATI MMC so that when the programs are run for the first time, they do not default to "play dead" factory settings

This assumes you did verify you have an approved ATI Power Supply

This assumes you did install the special augmented heatsink and windmill cooling top to the existing ATI USB 2.0 case

A side-effect of this might also mean.. same procedures would work in supporting PCI or AGP cards under newer Win7 x32 and Win10 x32 operating systems natively. TRIM command support would be one reason, or having access to MMC or more modern NLE editors and post processing tools.. Yaaawn.. very tired

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09-17-2017, 04:46 AM
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I see video in VirtualDub at 720x480, but it's only with preview mode, not overlay. And to me, that's a problem. You can see the interlacing lag. It doesn't affect the actual capture, but it can cause issue if your trying to verify quality during capture.

When I select the ATI AIW USB audio, it crashes VirtualDub.

The ATI AIW SB drivers installed without issues, unlike the ATI AIW PCI/PCIe cards. This was a breeze, those are a pain.

I have both my ATI AIW USB and my ATI AIW PCI installed.

USB:
- Audio crashes VirtualDub; I have to use the internal Turtle Beach card instead
- ATI MMC black
- VirtualDub only shows video in preview mode

PCI:
- ATI MMC black
- VirtualDub black

It's looking to be an overlay issue. I don't know what to do.

This is farther than I'd gotten in 2012-2015, but not by much. I'd actually had ATI MMC working in Windows 7 x86 with an AGP card, but it suddenly stopped and I could never get it to cooperate again on any system. Getting VirtualDub to work was about 50/50, and of the installed instances, about 50% of those were preview and not overlay.

The next step is to remove the PCI card, and try a newer PCIe. But I do not have any.

I'm tempted to get an i3-6100 built for capture, using an Asrock board, which would have the onboard Intel graphics. If it fails, I could give a free upgrade to a family member that needs it. Hmmm...

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09-17-2017, 02:59 PM
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USB:
- Audio crashes VirtualDub; I have to use the internal Turtle Beach card instead
Yes, I saw that device appear as an option in Virtual Dub 1.9 but learned to ignore it. The audio seems to be sent and integrated into the general PC audio mixer.

- ATI MMC black

Yes, This is the default setting on the Video tab in "Settings" in ATI MMC, all of the values are set to (zero) by default so the screen appears "Black".. go into ATI MMC and simply raise them to about half-way and the picture is there. (Its also set per Input "type") so the same values for Composite, S-Video and TV Tuner are (all) set to zero, as you select one input after another revisting the Video settings tab you will see they are also set to (zero). Grab the horizontal control sliders and raise them. Contrast and Brightness are the most important, but Saturation and Tint are also important.. the color is all wrong until the Tint is corrected at least.

- VirtualDub only shows video in preview mode

I think this might be a Virtual Dub version issue. The GraphEdit2 render of the driver also has pins for Overlay and Preview which it can auto-render. I haven't looked very far into it but the Overlay render is determined by the program and it can set things to some unusual defaults.. so like the "Black" screen.. they may have done something not quite (sane?) with the VBI setting that feeds into the Overlay mode.

All of the Settings are in the registry (I think) so coming up with sane defaults may be the convenient solution. In the meantime getting it to work at all may just be a matter of tuning the defaults.

BTW I found that ATI MMC actually detects if you are trying to use Microsoft Remote Terminal Service with ATI MMC. It throws up a little message that says you can't do that. (funnily) I found if you left it running and connected to the running ATI MMC it did not do that but the picture was awfull. The error message pop-up was captured and is attached as an image file below.

-- merged --

Where to Next?

I am thinking there are several issues with the USB that need to be addressed, any one of which is a distraction to working on the others.

0. dissassemble and augment the cooling inside the case (got some ideas)
1. power supply issues (done, use the correct "ATI approved" adapter)
2. insert an "install prep step" to prepare the registry to receive and run the XP installers
3. insert a "setup prep step" to prepare the registry with (sane) default settings for the ATI MMC, and other programs
4. better understand if there is a version of Virtual Dub that works, or remove the reg setting that exposes audio device

The cooling issue might be solved by removing the metal plates surrounding the antenna coax and the type-A USB connector and power connector. Then placing a USB powered laptop cooling fan on the antenna coax opening. It has a silicone conduit to provide a tight seal. Also chip "fins" with thermal adhesive are available from Amazon for low cost.

This would be easy, and wouldn't require replacing the case or modiying it.. just removing some plates and adding on a cooling stack and fan.

There are much cheaper models, but here is a laptop side fan:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01NACVLWM...d=TXTJA0E44WRM

And here are some chip fins with 3M adhesive tape:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01KHIBEKY...ing=UTF8&psc=1

I am [also] thinking a lot of precautions I took to get it working are overkill and the install and setup "prep steps" will be the real deal.

The cooling, power suppply and virtual dub issues may just be a matter of learned behavior, nice to haves.. or "Really should" haves.. but not strictly necessary to get it working close to flawlessly.

(oh...) and write a [good] user's guide manual which tells you about the pitfalls of some features that may look like bugs but are actually (laugh) features

The Virtual Dub 1.9.11 x32 (is the one that I am currently using) it does not expose the separate audio device, except as use [capture device] for audio, not as specific.. but if they changed Virtual Dub this way.. might indicate they were aware of the problem (totally guessing).

I have attached a snapshot of the VirtualDub 1.9.11 audio choices presented on my system, using them doesn't crash VirtualDub for me. I do recall having a version of VirtualDub that (did) crash but I think sanlyn said something about it being an unstable version and that most people chose to use an earlier specific version. I chose 1.9.11 from the 1.9 recommendation and didn't give it much thought after that.

I have also attatched the registry file entries I am currently using for installing and running ATI MMC 8.9 there is also some junk in there from previous experiments. I just used regedit [export] and saved the file, then renamed it to a .txt file so it doesn't look dangerous to any online filters. ( I'm uploading it just to toss something out there that works, always get annoyed by people who figure something out and then disappear with the answer never to be heard from again..)

Obviously I need to repeat and distill the steps for install.

The third attachment is of the registry setting I have set from ATI MMC 8.9 that bring up the brightness and contrast. I have found the video proc amp page for DirectX that should appear in VirtualDub or other third party programs is not appearing.. it could be many things, even my messy install blocking it.

For now.. I know if ATI MMC 8.9 is installed you can go to settings and bring the brightness and contrast up and the Black Screen begins showing video. Possibly you just have to start ATI MMC TV and revisit the settings to make sure it initializes the USB device with [other than (zero) values]


Attached Images
File Type: png ATI MMC RDP.png (4.2 KB, 2 downloads)
File Type: jpg virtualdub1911-audio-choices.jpg (41.9 KB, 3 downloads)
Attached Files
File Type: txt app-compatibility.txt (5.6 KB, 1 downloads)
File Type: txt ati-video-defaults.txt (2.4 KB, 1 downloads)

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  #13  
09-17-2017, 05:36 PM
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lordsmurf lordsmurf is offline
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Raising ATI MMC video levels makes the image, at most, turn light gray. Zero input is detected.

The audio selected in VirtualDub is the one it records. Not selecting the correct audio should result in a muted video capture. I do not have "Capture device" as an option, only the ATI USB card. In fact, merely having "Capture device" as an option is unusual, and I rarely see that option available.

Getting ATI cards to function in 98/2K/XP is already difficult enough. Trying to force it onto an OS it doesn't want makes the entire process an ordeal, with failure and wasted time the likely outcome. I've been down this rabbit hole before. I gave it one night, and I'm going to quit now.

I'm really glad you got it to work, but it's not a situation that can be replicated easily.

I think ATI install on WinVista+ is really hardware dependent (motherboard, sound card, CPU, etc), and as well OS version dependent. For example, I have an old MSDN copy of Win7 x86, not a retail version.

I'm also still not truly convinced you've worked the bugs out. We'll see. For example, you must be careful in how the OS treats audio values. You don't want it to redline/distort (too loud!) the audio, which is a common problem in WinVista+ due to how MS f'd up the audio controls. FYI, that's also a primary reason that XP is still the OS of choice for video capture, it's not just the video hardware drivers.

I may attempt this again sometime, but not for a while. Can't spare the time.

However, do keep sharing your findings -- especially on hardware mods.

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  #14  
09-17-2017, 06:29 PM
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jwillis84 jwillis84 is offline
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Sure

I completely understand

Its smart to know when to back away

I released this information prematurely anyway, it works for me, but I don't have the steps documented yet.

I am working on that

I'm seeing some (unsual) choices in the default install available on the cdroms that makes me wonder how they ever worked.. so I'm guessing its not only the defaults that were misguidedly set in the original product.

I "blindly" ran through a standard compatibility setup making the choices I'm familar with.. assuming ATI did the same is wrong.. they made some .. hmm .. questionable choices?

I'll get the software install "repeatable" before I post about that again

The hardware mods I'm pretty confident are minor and simple.. even the external laptop fan idea may be extreme.

A simple heatsink fin stack.. which didn't exist way back in 2003.. or were hard to get.. might be all that's needed and proper venting on the case, leaving out one metal connector plate might provide sufficient airflow.

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  #15  
09-22-2017, 03:42 AM
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A short update.

I turned on the MMC 9.08 installer extended logging.

The software was designed for 95, 98, NT and W2K and no further... warnings have been configured off in the InstallShield script engine for any other OS. The older msexec engine packages crash the msiexec service frequently during install on XP-no SP and SP2, SP3, it looks like a bunch of security enhancements to impersonation and COM in XP prevent the installer from completing its scripts and it fails to copy software to the file system. The registry adds do succeed however. Script logic prevents it from installing known compatible requirements of COM objects if there are newer versions already installed by the os or updates. (not good) if it was ever XP compatible it was probably briefly during beta testing. XP came out in 2001, this came out in 2003 they had an install base and focused on that I guess.

The MMC 9.08 installer doesn't crash on Windows 2000 server and seems to work as designed.

The MMC installer will silently decline to install if the USB drivers for the ATI USB are not loaded at the time the installer is run.. it doesn't crash.. it just quits without installing. That means you can't install MMC while the ATI USB unit is unplugged or powered down. Some of the script logic seems to "test" the device while its installing.. if it can't find the device.. the script gives up.

Power profiles also tends to turn unused USB ports "off" when they are not in use.. if they are not configured to remain always "on" they can and do shutdown and the operating system removes the device drivers for the ATI USB device from the view of the MMC installer.. and it will silently decline to install. -- this is not intuitive and annoying, since it doesn't draw power from the PC, it has its own power brick.. but the PC USB port still powers down and hides the device. Best practice is change the PC Power profile (not) to turn USB ports off.. ever. -- this is probably true of any USB video capture device, but especially if it doesn't draw power from a USB port. On a laptop however this could be a hard decision to make.

Life is an education, in the art of Listening.

Last edited by jwillis84; 09-22-2017 at 04:04 AM.
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  #16  
09-23-2017, 05:41 AM
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You know, this whole ATI AIW/MMC Windows 7 thing has pissed me off for years. I'm seriously tempted to pack up a system, drive down there, and let you see what you can do on it. A best friend from high school lives in College Station. But with his on-the-road work schedule, a visit has never worked out. Just a thought. Perhaps, someday, maybe.

Until then, curious to read your repeatable method, if ever you find one.

I'd be especially interested to see what you could do with a PCI AIW in a modern PCI-capable board. Windows 7 x86, though I also had some mild successes with Windowsw 7 x64. PCIe was a brick wall. AGP 9000 cards worked best (with "worked" being a loose term), but new Windows on old hardware seemed almost pointless.

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  #17  
09-23-2017, 03:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
Getting ATI cards to function in 98/2K/XP is already difficult enough. Trying to force it onto an OS it doesn't want makes the entire process an ordeal, with failure and wasted time the likely outcome. I've been down this rabbit hole before. I gave it one night, and I'm going to quit now.

I may attempt this again sometime, but not for a while. Can't spare the time..

Quote:
Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
I'm also still not truly convinced you've worked the bugs out. We'll see. For example, you must be careful in how the OS treats audio values. You don't want it to redline/distort (too loud!) the audio, which is a common problem in WinVista+ due to how MS f'd up the audio controls. FYI, that's also a primary reason that XP is still the OS of choice for video capture, it's not just the video hardware drivers.

This 1000 times over! Just when you think you've got it working it will fool you. After many many hours of finagling, I finally got my Hauppauge card to "work" with VirtualVCR. And it did, for a while. Until it didn't.

When it comes to issues like these, that are niche issues for our already niche purposes, it's never worth the headache!
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  #18  
09-24-2017, 02:36 AM
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Update.. update.

After a lot of fiddling... it may be stable on XP for now.

The ATI USB 2.0 was released in 2004 with software 9.03 and 9.06 which installs and works fine on Win2000.

That same software 9.03 and 9.06 does not install on XP, instead they both produce 0x80040750 String Out of Bounds.

I took the CIM (Catalyst Install Manager) apart to see how it worked. Its basically a WinAmp Nullsoft Installer - to provide sequential install of prerequisites. The CIM "wraps" a setup.exe from InstallShield Scriptable Installer DevStudio 9 which unpacks a setup.inx scrambled script file. Logging indicates when InstallShield finishes unpacking the msiexec packages and decorating the registry, its about to hand over the task of adding the features in the msi to the Add/Remove programs database and crashes the msiexec windows installer. I manually by-passed the InstallShield scriptable installer and was able to install the msi packages but they were orphaned because they didn't have the regisistry and com support to actually run. So the core problem is the setup.inx file supports Windows 2000 (and presumable 95, 98, Me, NT) but was never tested on XP. I tried XP0, XP1, XP2, XP3 same crash every time.

I also ran up the line trying 9.01, 9.02, 9.03, 9.06, 9.08, 9.14, 9.16 they fixed it in version 9.16 but it doesn't seem to recognize the ATI USB 2.0 device drivers properly. I think by then they were on to the next generation of USB Capture cards after the company was long re-imagined for the Theater 550, 600 and 750 USB devices.

Its too bad since later support for Win7 x64 for the ATI USB 2.0 would have been great.. but no company supports hardware it made and no longer sells forever.

The [best] option has turned out.. to.. not be so bad.

Retro-actively, or because they're lifespan overlapped during the product and software lifecycles.

ATI MMC 8.9 does recognize the ATI USB 2.0 device and appears to work as designed. Video Soap is available and works.

Its even a somewhat smooth install on XP, which means it "might" work well on Windows 7x32

The thing is... this combination.. of ATI USB 2.0 drivers + DirectX9 + ATI MMC 8.9 was never aligned on a "single" cdrom.

They were targeting and encouraged people to use the new CIM (catalyst) installer which worked with Windows 2000, but not Windows XP.

I'd really like to fix the setup.inx file, or adapt the setup.inx from 9.16 to go back and support the ATI USB 2.0 .. but to what end? While it is possible, unscrambling then re-scrambling the script at this late date is not a hard thing to do.. lots of tools do it.

But MMC 8.9 works just as well.

I did make a discovery on the old ATI infobase, that (a) they were aware of the support problem regarding XP but nothing ever came of it.. the next year the company had a near death experience and was then acquired by AMD (b) by design the software capture field is "cropped" to 320x240 (or something like that) and limited on purpose.. they were targeting the PVR market so archival purposes were not on the radar (c) they were aware of the sleep problem with the USB port and referred people to Microsoft for a patch to fix the problem.. which I don't think Msft really actually fixed.. the problem continued.

A curious artifact of the "Era" was the ATI MMC software came with MPEG "encoders" but not "decoders" unless you had an official copy of the ATI DVD playback software.. which you had to get separately.. so you could not "playback" capture files made by the ATI MMC 8.9 software in .vcr format unless you exported them.. and the exports if in MPEG format could not be played back by any other program unless you had an MPEG decoder.

Its laughable now.. but VLC didn't exist.. and MPEG codecs for decoding were licensed for money. Microsoft XP did not come with a "Free" MPEG playback codec decoder.. but you could buy a software decoder from several online vendors.. or "burn" a DVD and play it back on your DVD player.. "ick".. Windows 7 would change all that.. and the codec-"warz" would make it kind of not a problem in later years.. but its a funny situation on a nearly 18 year old operating system.

I feel like I'm recanting "star wars" to myself.. in order to explain why everything is so "clunky" in the ATI MMC world of yarons ago..

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  #19  
09-24-2017, 02:58 AM
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A tale of two Overlays and Previews

I did not mention:

I was doing most of my explorations on virtual machines running on Win7x64, with the one ATI USB 2.0 connected to the host machines USB port.

So for clarity.. that's Win2000x86 and WinXPx86.. running as virtual machine "guests" on a single Win7x64 machine, and at the same time.

Switching the ATI USB 2.0 capture device "between" the Win7 and Win2000 or WinXP system worked pretty well.

The ATI USB 2.0 hardware was a real trouper.

And a pretty old virtual machine platform at that:

VMware Player 5.0.2

I started out using a dedicated box and an SSD flash drive to quickly backup and reprovision images using Macrium to snatch and grab different versions from different partitions.. but that got old.. and I went the way of the vm.

The down side is I don't even have software assisted Overlay.. it just flat out doesn't do overlay and MMC seems to always want to do Overlay. So my capture or Live window is Black.. but my headphones merrily play static while I switch channels or record stuff. When I play back the file in the MMC File Player.. glorious minutes of static in full rich color entertain my tired eyes.

Windows Media Capture or Encoder programs display Live images, but automatically disable them once capture is engaged in their softwares. Transcoding I can see a preview playback in an output window but nada in the input.

Virtual Dub blows right through all the rules and "Seems" to instantiate its own version of software Overlay even though DirectX9 says "nope.. ain't gonna do it.. on this lousy [virtual] hardware". Which is where the "green pops" appear on Virtual Dub capture files.. that seems a result of Virtual Dub "synthetically" emulating a true Overlay.. but either not keeping up.. or just soundly failing to prioritize the capture over the Live view experience.

I have "heard" on more modern virtual machine platforms.. Overlay support in DirectX9 is possible and not all that bad..

I would guess the "proof" would be to put this back on a hardware platform with a decent video card and see how stable it actually is. My test platform has an ATI HD6450 which might work. I do worry however about ATI vs ATI software stacks competing.. or walking over each other in the single registry and COM space.

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  #20  
09-24-2017, 03:56 AM
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I have an i7-6700K running Win7 x64, Asrock Extreme7+ with onboard Intel video. I won't install native, but if you read about a way for a VirtualBox session to see overlay, while passing a USB signal from host to VM, let me know. That's be interesting.

In fact, XP in a VM would be fine, too.

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