Quantcast Should I build a new VHS capturing desktop? - digitalFAQ Forum
  #1  
03-16-2021, 12:14 PM
vacantrush vacantrush is offline
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I have an old desktop I recently repurposed for transferring DATs via the M-Audio Delta DiO 2496 PCI soundcard I've had for twenty years. I'm running Windows XP SP3 on it.

I have been thinking about and/or approaching transferring a bunch of VHS tapes I have and/or could borrow for years now. Last year, I purchased a couple Panasonic AG-1960 VCRs via a local university's auction site and I just missed out on what was probably a decent JVC SVHS VCR. I picked up a Hauppauge USB-Live2 last year and after reading further, learned they are just okay for transfers. I am currently in the process of purchasing lordsmurf's last ATI AIW PCI he has for sale.

I do realize I need to reinstall the OS from scratch due to XP SP3 being problematic compared to XP SP2, though more so because I used an SSD which would be problematic for storage over the long term. I ordered a 2TB WD Black SATA HDD yesterday and I'm already committed to an OS reinstall. The question is do I need to build a new desktop with better old hardware due to my current old hardware not being up to the task of transferring VHS?

Desktop specs:
mobo: Gigabyte M61PME-S2P
cpu: AMD Athlon X2-7850 2.8GHz Socket AM2+
RAM: 2GB DDR2 PC2-6400 RAM

CPU benchmark: https://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu.php...al-Core&id=101
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  #2  
03-16-2021, 12:54 PM
latreche34 latreche34 is offline
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You could still use the same desktop for capturing analog tapes unless you are doing this as a business and you need two desktops running at the same time to save time and avoid CPU overload.

Speaking of saving time, do you know that you can transfer your DATs at 2x the speed in a bit perfect way? There is a DDS DAT computer drive that you can install into your desktop slot and hooks up to a PCIe SCSI card internally and you can transfer or make audio DAT's with an app like WaveDAT, The drive has to be a certain model with a modded firmware, I've been doing this for a while now, I've transferred over 200 DAT tapes to WAV then FLAC for end user.
My setup is a little different, it works with a laptop and an ExpressCard slot, See this thread I made.
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  #3  
03-16-2021, 01:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vacantrush View Post
I have an old desktop I recently repurposed for transferring DATs via the M-Audio Delta DiO 2496 PCI soundcard I've had for twenty years. I'm running Windows XP SP3 on it.

I have been thinking about and/or approaching transferring a bunch of VHS tapes I have and/or could borrow for years now. Last year, I purchased a couple Panasonic AG-1960 VCRs via a local university's auction site and I just missed out on what was probably a decent JVC SVHS VCR. I picked up a Hauppauge USB-Live2 last year and after reading further, learned they are just okay for transfers. I am currently in the process of purchasing lordsmurf's last ATI AIW PCI he has for sale.

I do realize I need to reinstall the OS from scratch due to XP SP3 being problematic compared to XP SP2, though more so because I used an SSD which would be problematic for storage over the long term. I ordered a 2TB WD Black SATA HDD yesterday and I'm already committed to an OS reinstall. The question is do I need to build a new desktop with better old hardware due to my current old hardware not being up to the task of transferring VHS?

Desktop specs:
mobo: Gigabyte M61PME-S2P
cpu: AMD Athlon X2-7850 2.8GHz Socket AM2+
RAM: 2GB DDR2 PC2-6400 RAM

CPU benchmark: https://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu.php...al-Core&id=101
My suggestion is to install XP Integral edition, which is years beyond SP3, updated last in 2020, an unofficial build of the OS.

SSD is a problem with all XP, no TRIM.

We had those exact CPUs for years, on Foxconn and Gigabyte boards. It was fine. I didn't use those for capture myself, but I built AIW systems from those when we retired them (and sold those on the marketplace). Nice systems. The card you're getting from me from me will be perfect for this.

The 1960 is a ho-hum model, nothing really remarkable, no TBC. Maybe just better than a consumer VCR. But I'm sure it was cheap coming from a college auction. Those auctions are often "as is", and in my experience at least 50% are fubar decks. The "testing" they do, if any, is often laughably ridiculous ("I see lights! It works!"). So hopefully you got a good one.

That Hauppauge has not-great Conexant chips (almost nothing Conexant has ever been good in 20 years).

Quote:
Originally Posted by latreche34 View Post
You could still use the same desktop for capturing analog tapes unless you are doing this as a business and you need two desktops running at the same time to save time and avoid CPU overload.
Yes, multi-tasking not allowed!

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  #4  
03-16-2021, 01:15 PM
vacantrush vacantrush is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by latreche34 View Post
You could still use the same desktop for capturing analog tapes unless you are doing this as a business and you need two desktops running at the same time to save time and avoid CPU overload.
It's for personal transfers, not for a business, and my question was more about whether or not my CPU and DDR2 memory are up to the task...


Quote:
Originally Posted by latreche34 View Post
Speaking of saving time, do you know that you can transfer your DATs at 2x the speed in a bit perfect way? There is a DDS DAT computer drive that you can install into your desktop slot and hooks up to a PCIe SCSI card internally and you can transfer or make audio DAT's with an app like WaveDAT, The drive has to be a certain model with a modded firmware, I've been doing this for a while now, I've transferred over 200 DAT tapes to WAV then FLAC for end user.
My setup is a little different, it works with a laptop and an ExpressCard slot, See this thread I made.
While this is outside of the scope of my thread's intent, I can't help myself from nerding out on this stuff... Yes, I am aware of there being a DDS drive solution. I only just resurrected the old desktop I have last summer. I did not know if my old Tascam DA-20mkii DAT deck was operational after being in a box for over a decade - thankfully it was! Same with the Delta DiO 2496 PCI card - it worked too! I only utilize this XP desktop for transferring 32k DATs as the Marantz PMD670 I use for 44.1/48 kHz DAT transfers cannot do 32 kHz digitally. I did a few 32k transfers last fall without issues. This spring, I did a few more transfers of an old trader friend's 32k DATs. Looking at the transfers in Adobe Audition, there are tiny clicks at random intervals. It's like this on every single 32k DAT transfer I made using the Delta Dio 2496 PCI card. The recordings sound fine when I am listening to the DATs, so it's the transfers that have these clicks and not the DATs that are not the problem. I don't know how to diagnose the issue but it makes me think the card is having problems or dying. Maybe a capacitor is blown or something, who knows... I tried re-transferring one DAT twice more. Each transfer has those clicks, but at different times of the recording on each transfer. It's both consistent and inconsistent at the same time! I purchased an M-Audio Audiophile 2496 off eBay and will see if a new-to-me card does the trick. Suffice it to say if that does not work, I will probably start looking into the DDS drive solution!
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  #5  
03-16-2021, 01:33 PM
latreche34 latreche34 is offline
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With a DDS drive the data will be packed in packets and sent via SCSI just like USB or firwire, so there is no chance of introducing any audio artifacts like in SPDIF or TOSLINK streaming schemes. Good luck.
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  #6  
03-17-2021, 08:06 AM
enois enois is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vacantrush View Post
Looking at the transfers in Adobe Audition, there are tiny clicks at random intervals. It's like this on every single 32k DAT transfer I made using the Delta Dio 2496 PCI card. The recordings sound fine when I am listening to the DATs, so it's the transfers that have these clicks and not the DATs that are not the problem.
Have you checked in the M Audio Delta Control Panel, in the "Hardware Settings" tab, that Master Clock is selected "S/PDIF In" and not "Internal Xtal"?
Is important for the -DAT player to MAudio card transfer- that S/PDIF from the player give the clock. If you leave Internar Xtal may encounter a similar problem you have experienced.
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  #7  
03-25-2021, 07:53 PM
vacantrush vacantrush is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enois View Post
Have you checked in the M Audio Delta Control Panel, in the "Hardware Settings" tab, that Master Clock is selected "S/PDIF In" and not "Internal Xtal"?
Is important for the -DAT player to MAudio card transfer- that S/PDIF from the player give the clock. If you leave Internar Xtal may encounter a similar problem you have experienced.
My experience has been this:

If I set the Sync Source in the M-Audio Delta Control Panel to "external - spdif" I get a flashing "unlocked !" box when playing a DAT connected via coax. See attached M-Audio_Control_Panel.jpg

If I set the Sync Source in the M-Audio Delta Control Panel to "internal" I get a solid green "locked" box when playing a DAT connected via coax. I am able to record in Cool Edit Pro without any issues.

Even if I leave Sync Source in the M-Audio Delta Control Panel set to "external - spdif" and ignore the flashing "unlocked !" message, Cool Edit Pro will not record anything. See attached CEP_Error.jpg


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File Type: jpg CEP_Error.jpg (39.1 KB, 2 downloads)
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  #8  
03-27-2021, 07:25 AM
enois enois is offline
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That's error is strange. Sample rate from DAT to sound card is equally setted? In "spdif setting" have you tried mode "consumer" instead "professional"?
The tiny clicks at random intervals, happen only with 32k tapes?
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  #9  
03-29-2021, 04:15 PM
vacantrush vacantrush is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enois View Post
That's error is strange. Sample rate from DAT to sound card is equally setted? In "spdif setting" have you tried mode "consumer" instead "professional"?
The tiny clicks at random intervals, happen only with 32k tapes?
I took another approach at this...

I should remind you that I have only been transferring 32k DATs via the Delta Dio 2496 on an XP desktop as I already have a 44.1/48k transfer solution. Well, I played a 48k DAT while connected to the Delta Dio 2496, and it was able to lock on to the signal while set to "external - spdif"! So it is only 32k DATs that are the issue - weird!

I previously ordered an M-Audio Audiophile 2496 PCI card off eBay without realizing I would need the breakout cable with SPDIF connector as well. I've now ordered a breakout cable and will give this a shot via the Audiophile 2496 when it arrives

If that fails, I will be looking at the DDS drive option. I thought others might like to know that there is a vendor selling audio-capable DDS drives:
http://www.mashek.com/SGIstorage/DATdrives.php
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