Quantcast Registry hack for Tevion USB audio control? - digitalFAQ Forum
  #1  
10-08-2020, 12:59 AM
kingbean kingbean is offline
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I am having some difficulty with my Tevion USB capture device, purchased from LordSmurf a few months back.

In the past few months I've purchased the Tevion, a JVC VCR w/ TBC, an ES10 and an ES15, have performed numerous tests across the whole lot and finally was satisfied to get stuck into digitising my VHS tapes.

My current set-up:

JVC HR-DVS2 >
Video: S-Video > Cypress CYP100G TBC > S-Video > Tevion USB
Audio: RCA > Tevion USB

Previously I was using a non-TBC VCR, into the Cypress, into an ADVC-110.

I captured the first tape yesterday and was blown away by the improvement. I'd previously had troubles with vertical distortions and waviness, which was completely (to my eyes) cured by the new VCR. Coupled with the extra detail I'm getting by not capturing to DV, I couldn't believe just how good the improvement was. The temptation to just get by with what I had was strong, but the improvements were worth every cent I spent (and there was a lot of them!). No regrets there.

With capture completed, I played back the file only to find the audio and video was out of sync. Great. A few more hours of testing, reading forum posts, venturing over to AmaRecTV, back to VirtualDub, back to AmaRecTV... finally I found a combination of settings in VirtualDub that results in a synced output. I captured a second tape, was pleased with the results, and went to bed happy.

This morning I've attempted my third tape, and noticed immediately the volume meter is completely solid. It drops a little during a quiet spot then back to full. And with that I'm back to the forums

The closest solution I could manage was Windows Sound Settings > Input > Line (USB Audio Device) > Device Properties. In here there's a volume slider, which seems to make only a very, very small differnce. If I set it to 0 or 1, there is NO audio coming through into VirtualDub. If I set it to 2, the audio levels hover very close to 0.0db, often touching it. There is no in-between, and this is a slider that goes 0-100!!

Nothing I could find in VirtualDub made any difference. The most common suggestion seemed to be (in capture mode) Audio > Windows Mixer but when I click this, nothing happens. It's not greyed out, it's a valid option but when I click it, the menu disappears and that's that.

I know there's a registry hack for the ATI USB devices, and this Tevion is a 'clone'... so do I need to do the same? I had a bit of a poke around in there but couldn't find anything that really stood out at me. Closest I could find was:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE > SOFTWARE > USB2800

Within here there are two folders:

Audio >
> AudioClass [Yes]
> DeviceName [USB EMP Audio Device]
TwainDS >
> RealDSName [USB 2861 Video]

Any ideas? I do have a Behringer audio mixer I could use between the VCR and the Tevion to lower the volume, but I'd really prefer not to add another device to the chain.

Thanks (as always), and apologies for the long post - turned into more of a yarn than a question!
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  #2  
10-08-2020, 04:48 AM
BarryTheCrab BarryTheCrab is online now
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Does your Tevion have mini jack for audio, rather than have it combined into the USB?
What settings in VDub did you use?

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  #3  
10-08-2020, 03:50 PM
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The input bundle is same as ATI 600 USB, s-video + RCA audio + composite video

Amarec is no good, you need to use VirtualDub.

What OS? Unlike the actual ATI, which needs the audio hack, the Tevion has audio controls inside the OS. In WinXP, these are not available for preview. But in Vista/7/8/10, preview is available.

These are the instructions I wrote, to go with this card:

Quote:
This revision of the Tevion USB card uses the generic eMPIA driver, which controls the eMPIA bridge and audio.

The installer adds two audio drivers to the computer: Vista and XP/other. Windows 7/8/10 thinks it's other, and incorrectly selects the XP driver. The Vista audio driver simply needs to be force selected.

Go into Windows Device Manager
Window 7/8/10 will show Error Code 10 for "USB EMP audio device"

To force install:

Step 1: Right-click the "USB EMP Audio device"
Step 2: Select "Browse my computer for driver software"
Step 3: select "Let me pick from a list of device drivers on my computer"
Step 4: Select "USB Audio Device" instead of "USB EMP Audio device"
Step 5: The error/warning for "USB EMP Audio device" disappears."
Step 6: Reboot.

The driver is now set, and it's time to properly setup Windows.

Step 7: Go to Windows Sound controls. (Tip: right-click on the volume icon in the systray.)
Step 8: Go to Recording tab.
Step 9: Go to Line / USB Audio Device, right-click it, go to Properties.
Step 10: Go to Listen tab, check "Listen to this device". Apply, OK

This enable audio preview at the OS level, and preview is not needed in VirtualDub.


Now the card is fully setup. Overlay video mode should work in VirtualDub, preview is the fall-back. So in-sync clear non-popping audio preview should be available with non-choppy video.

VirtualDub 1.9.x or VirtualDub FilterMod 40121 is suggested.

Note: Contrary to popular misconception, the Tevion is not an Easycap/EZcap rebadge. Yes, the same generic eMPIA drivers are used for both cards. In fact, most USB capture cards are based on the eMPIA design. The eMPIA bridge controls the video chipset in hardware, and the computer only connects to the bridge. Hence one driver for many cards using many different chipsets. The Tevion uses the same Texas Instruments TVP5150 and eMPIA USB audio as the ATI 600 USB card, and is consider an ATI 600 USB clone. Rather than use the generic emPIA drivers, ATI created a custom installer. The Easycap/EZcap uses the inferior Philips SAA7113 video capture chipset, with the AC97 eMPIA audio. Not the same card whatsoever.
This all said ... are you sure it's the card, and not the source tapes with too-high audio?

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  #4  
10-08-2020, 05:24 PM
kingbean kingbean is offline
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Yeah I would definitely prefer to use VirtualDub. Regarding the sync, I was able to maintain it in VD by checking 'Insert null frames when captured frames are too far apart'. This results in some duplicate frames but only at the start or end of my clips - which I will trim off anyway. So I'm happy with this solution.

I'm on Windows 10. I did follow those instructions, which differ slightly in W10:

Volume icon > Windows Sound Settings > Input > Line (USB Audio Device)

It is through here that I do have some volume control, although as noted above it makes very little difference when set to anything between 2 and 100. If I set it to 1, the is NO audio coming through. If I set it to 2, it regularly touches the 0db end of the meter.

The tape in question I suspect has been recorded with high volume, but a previous capture through my ADVC-110 had no clipping issues. It was still louder than other tapes, but didn't seem to clip distort like this one is doing.

So I guess my real question is - is there a way I can lower the incoming volume level, to accommodate high levels on certain tapes? Other than the Windows Sound Settings above which have very little impact.

I've also just noticed, while comparing ADVC and Tevion captures of the two other tapes, that the audio of the Tevion capture doesn't sound as clear - a little muddled. This may be a result of using the new VCR, so I'll have to try another capture on the non-TBC VCR via the Tevion and compare..
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  #5  
10-08-2020, 07:59 PM
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Sometimes you can't avoid a mixer. Behringer is nice, the XENYX 1002 especially.
I have a Tapco, essentially a Mackie.

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  #6  
10-15-2020, 09:59 PM
kingbean kingbean is offline
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Yeah I've got an 802.I'll do some testing tomorrow and work that into the chain.

Does it sound 'normal' that the Windows volume control is so useless? It's functioning essentially as 'on/off' rather than a 0-100 slider.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BarryTheCrab View Post
What settings in VDub did you use?
Sorry, I overlooked this earlier. I don't think this is the issue, as I am getting the audio into VDub.. but I'll report back tomorrow with details.

Thanks!

-- merged --

Update: I tried coming back to this to confirm VDub settings but it kept crashing on me. BSOD with "BUGCODE_USB_DRIVER" error, a few seconds after entering Capture mode.

I tried repairing the driver - crashing persisted. Driver uninstall/reinstall - crashing persisted. I tried it on an old laptop running Win 7 (too old for capture, but just to help me troubleshoot) - and still Windows would crash when I put VDub into capture mode, with the same 'bugcode' error.

I resorted to doing a System Restore on my desktop, rolled it back two weeks and it no longer crashes. What's more - the volume control actually functions now!! So I now have video files with suitable volume levels.

Unfortunately, the sound is definitely muffled compared to captures on my previous VCR. So I'm going to have to clean the audio heads and hope that solves the problem.

Any advice? I have 100% isopropyl alcohol and have just ordered some chamois swabs. I know not to go up and down the heads. How can I identify which is the audio head?
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  #7  
10-19-2020, 06:08 AM
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Are you using this driver?


Attached Files
File Type: zip eMPIA-Driver(Tevion).zip (24.36 MB, 2 downloads)

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  #8  
10-19-2020, 03:42 PM
kingbean kingbean is offline
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Yep, that's the driver I'm using, but since my system restore it's been working fine and functions as intended.

I've since re-captured a tape on both my new VCR, and the old VCR, both using the Tevion - the sound is definitely not as clear on the new machine. Hence my assumption it's head-related. My chamois swabs shipped yesterday.
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  #9  
10-28-2020, 04:04 PM
kingbean kingbean is offline
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I considered making a new thread for this but have continued here for the sake of keeping it in one place. Perhaps admin can break it off or edit the current thread title as necessary?

As noted above, I now have proper volume control of my Tevion USB from within Windows and can successfully control the capture volume in order to monitor clipping within VirtualDub. No concerns there.

But, what I did notice while looking into all of this was that the audio quality of my captures using my new VCR (HR-DVS2) is not up the the standard of my previous captures, using an HR-S5500AM.

My initial thought was the audio head needed a clean. I bought MG Chemicals Chamois Swabs and used 100% isopropyl alcohol but it has not made any difference to the clarity of the sound. So I'm again hoping for some advice!

I have attached three sample audio clips, the titles should be self explanatory:

AudioComparison_DVS2_Tevion_PreClean - Capture using my HR-DVS2, sound muffled
AudioComparison_DVS2_Tevion_PostClean - Capture using my HR-DVS2 after cleaning the audio head, sound remains muffled
AudioComparison_5500_Tevion - Capture using my HR-S5500AM, sound has greater clarity

These recordings are from an amateur video of a band playing live in a pub. Both captures have been performed using all the exact same equipment, bar the VCR. Same cables, same chain, same capture device.

The captures from my HR-DVS2 are lacking some of the highs present in the 5500 capture.

At the very start, you can compare the sound of the drummer's high-hats - the 5500 capture has three clear instances of it, whereas the other two on my DVS2 only has one. The first two are there but very low in comparison.

Other notable examples are the general background crowd sound in the lead up to the song starting, again sounding muffled/muddy on the DVS2 captures. And again once the song starts, it's just noticeably not as clear - drum cymbals, vocal tone, and just general clarity is lacking.

Any suggestions?

Here's some pictures from inside my DVS2, anything obvious that sticks out?

DVS2_Inside_1.jpg
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DVS2_Inside_2.jpg
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Attached Files
File Type: wav AudioComparison_DVS2_Tevion_PreClean.wav (12.56 MB, 0 downloads)
File Type: wav AudioComparison_DVS2_Tevion_PostClean.wav (12.56 MB, 0 downloads)
File Type: wav AudioComparison_5500_Tevion.wav (12.56 MB, 0 downloads)

Last edited by kingbean; 10-28-2020 at 04:08 PM. Reason: noting that I have used same cables for each capture
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  #10  
10-28-2020, 04:56 PM
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I've not overly fond the DVS2. I've had both good and bad units.

Confirm it's on HiFi in the menu.

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  #11  
10-28-2020, 05:15 PM
kingbean kingbean is offline
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I did look through the menu but couldn't find anything specific to audio. I'll give it one last thorough exploration tonight.

The video is definitely doing a good job on this unit, as it has given me a solid picture on a tape that had very obvious vertical distortions on my older machine. I guess at worst I could capture the tape twice, once for video and once for audio - but I'm not especially interested in that solution!
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  #12  
10-28-2020, 05:36 PM
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There is a VCR menu entry for audio: Linear/Mono, HiFi Stereo, L, R

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  #13  
10-29-2020, 04:56 AM
kingbean kingbean is offline
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Thanks, I have the HR-DVS2EU, which after reading through the online manuals I now know has a slightly different menu setup to the HR-DVS2U.

I do not have a menu entry on my machine, but I am able to change the soundtrack directly from the remote, as per the following:

SoundtrackSelection.jpg

Despite the final dot point above, I am not able to change the audio during playback. I can change it when stopped, but no matter what I set it to, it switches to NORM once playback begins. If I press the audio button during playback, nothing happens (no change to audio and no OSD).

I might have to play around with other tapes, try a retail tape.. see if I can get anything to play back in HI FI at all.

Or, is the setting I'm changing here different to the one you refer to? I definitely do not have a menu entry for it.



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  #14  
Today, 02:33 AM
kingbean kingbean is offline
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Update:

I played an ex-rental movie in my DVS2. I am able to rotate through all the audio modes listed above during playback. Best sound is on HI FI L R.
I then played a home made tape recorded from a pay TV broadcast. Sound comes through beautifully on the HI FI L R setting.

So, the problem is not the audio head, nor the audio output.

As I mentioned, the tape giving me grief is footage of a band playing in a pub. It's not a professionally recorded program, nor tape. So it would make sense, perhaps, that it may not have a HI FI audio track - except for the fact that the sound is noticeably more 'hi fi' when played back on my other machine.

I've tried another tape, also a band in a pub (from the same collection but likely filmed on a different camera as it's ~5 years later). This one does let me cycle the soundtracks, and as again, HI FI L R sounds nice and crisp.

For whatever reason, my initial problem tape will not play back hi fi audio on the DVS2. Perhaps the tape is just older, and the hi fi soundtrack isn't being picked up by the DVS2, whereas my S5500 is more forgiving?

Who knows, but at least now I can rest easy, somewhat. I'll just have to confirm the soundtrack prior to each tape's capture, and if I do have other tapes defaulting to NORM, I'll re-capture those in my S5500 and swap the audio out.

One final idea is to use my S5500 for playback, and the DVS2 as a passthrough line TBC...? Bypassing the DVS2 for audio. I don't have enough cables to test just yet but I do have an order due shortly. I'm not hopeful, but I'm willing to try it.
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