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  #1  
06-21-2011, 09:17 AM
Bilge Bilge is offline
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Hi,

I live in the UK and need some help capturing both PAL & NTSC VHS tapes. I was thinking of buying a ATI AIW card so then I could edit the videos on my PC, but I was wondering if there are other cards more suitable before I bought one?

But more importantly I need advice on a good multi system/region VCR. I don't really have the money or space for 2 seperate players, so I'm hoping there are some good multi region players available.


I hope i've made some sense because i've never done anything like this before, thanks for reading.
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  #2  
06-22-2011, 04:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bilge View Post
I live in the UK and need some help capturing both PAL & NTSC VHS tapes. I was thinking of buying a ATI AIW card so then I could edit the videos on my PC, but I was wondering if there are other cards more suitable before I bought one?
That card would do exactly what you want -- record both native PAL and NTSC video, and in high quality.
Some other alternatives were recently mentioned here: Best ATI All In Wonder card alternatives, to transfer tapes to digital?
However, the ATI All In Wonder Radeon cards come highly suggested for your exact needs.

Quote:
But more importantly I need advice on a good multi system/region VCR. I don't really have the money or space for 2 seperate players, so I'm hoping there are some good multi region players available.
While I can understand the desire to have fewer VCRs, it's really not possible to do if you're seeking any degree of quality. Very few multisystem VCRs were ever manufactured, with almost all of them be re-brands of Panasonic AG-W2, AG-W3 and AG-W4 models. That includes the Aiwa, JVC and Samsung branded VCRs. Externally they looked different, but internals were all Panasonic. Although sold as professional equipment (and priced as such!), these are normal VHS players, and are very consumer in quality. You can expect a low-end tracking system, little in the way of video improvement filters, and no internal TBC. Yes, it works, but it's not really going to give you archival quality. If you're converting VHS tapes to DVD, that tends to insinuate a desire to archive something.

At most, the multi-system VCRs are suggested as secondary VCRs, because they'll often work with now-exotic tape formats (French SECAM, PAL-60, etc), and because it will give you a secondary VCR. That's important for those times when your primary better-quality player simply cannot track a tape properly -- it's nice to have various transports in a rack, to better guarantee you can always play tapes, even the stubborn badly-recorded ones.

Multi-system VCRs are quite pricey even by today's standards ($400+ at best, when in excellent condition), while prices were closer to $600 new 10 years ago (when the VCRs were still being sold, from old stock), and well into the $1,000+ range in the mid/late 1990s (when manufacturing was still ongoing). The same funds could easily be spend buying a separate PAL and NTSC S-VHS VCR, used or possibly new, either JVC or Panasonic.

For the best quality, get one of the suggested VCRs: VCR Buying Guide (S-VHS, D-VHS, Professional) for best video capturing

People who ignore the advice to buy separate VCRs (as opposed to a "combo" of PAL+NTSC together), or even separate DVD/VHS devices (as opposed to a combo VCR/DVD recorder), are always regretful of their purchase decisions. At some point in time, the devices break, taking out both parts of the "combo", amd the person usually gets aggravated, refusing to ever buy a combo type unit again. And when they see the quality that could have been had from two separate units, they wish they'd have done the non-combo method from the outset. I've seen that happen over and over and over again since the 1990s; back then, you had the super-crappy "dual-deck" VCRs from GoVideo, which were simply awful at dubbing tape-to-tape copies.

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  #3  
06-23-2011, 01:31 AM
Bilge Bilge is offline
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Thank you for replying, you've pretty much confirmed what I thought anyway, I keep reading that it's best to have seperate VCRs, so I guess that's what I will do. My friend has told me I can have his old VCR which will be PAL, I have no idea what it is but it's a start.

So I may aswell start by buying a capture card and a NTSC VCR. I have had problems with my sound card on Win7 so I'll be reinstalling XP x64, is there a prefered OS for the AIW capture cards?

My motherboard only has 1 PCI-E & PCI slots, should I be looking for a PCI capture card or one the USB devices?


Thanks for your time, it's much appreciated and I will be happy to donate to this great site.
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06-23-2011, 01:49 AM
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Quote:
is there a prefered OS for the AIW capture cards?
Windows XP -- and it's not just preferred, it's required.
When it comes to audio/video, XP is far more user-friendly and programmer-friendly for av software/hardware.

Quote:
My motherboard only has 1 PCI-E & PCI slots, should I be looking for a PCI capture card or one the USB devices?
This changes things. If you have a PCIe ATI AIW card, then Windows XP.
If you go for the ATI 600 PCIe or USB cards, then you can use Windows XP, Vista or 7. However, these cards are more limited.
This is discussed here: Best ATI All In Wonder card alternatives, to transfer tapes to digital?

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and I will be happy to donate to this great site.
Excellent.

Donate link.

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  #5  
06-23-2011, 11:03 AM
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Having no AGP slot has really hit my plans for a AIW card, I'm struggling to find any of the PCI-E cards listing in the post below;

http://www.digitalfaq.com/forum/13441-post6.html

I don't know what to do now
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  #6  
06-23-2011, 03:16 PM
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It may simply take a little longer to find the cards. Keep looking, don't give up.
Or as an alternative, look into the ATI 600 cards.

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  #7  
06-23-2011, 03:39 PM
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After abit of digging around I found an ATI All-In-Wonder Radeon X600 Pro, I just need to readup and see if that can capture both PAL & NTSC in MPEG-2. And would your hacks work with this card?

I'm also interested in the Blackmagic Intensity Pro, but I think i'll be paying extra for features that I will never use.
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06-23-2011, 03:51 PM
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Quote:
see if that can capture both PAL & NTSC in MPEG-2
It does.

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  #9  
06-23-2011, 04:36 PM
Bilge Bilge is offline
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Cool, well i've just bought one, if I don't like it I can always sell it on eBay.

Now the fun part, choosing a good VCR, time to read your guides again.
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  #10  
06-25-2011, 02:30 PM
Bilge Bilge is offline
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As I said earlier in the thread my friend has a JVC HR-J785EK, I can't seem to find much information other than a manual.

Does anybody here know anything about it?
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  #11  
06-26-2011, 02:16 AM
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It has B.E.S.T. and PICTURE CONTROL, making it somewhat comparable to the lowest-end JVC S-VHS NTSC VCRs (2901, 3600, 3800, 4600, 4800). But it's still just a consumer VHS VCR. Note that the "SQPB" quasi-playback of S-VHS is VHS quality, and it's not a S-VHS VCR. (Some people mistake SQPB for true S-VHS.)

You could do better, but you could also do worse.

It's a standard PAL VCR, not a multi-format VCR. (Though PAL VCRs do tend to play other formats, like NTSC, using the quasi PAL-60 like output. Or was that NTSC-50? I forget. Anyway, it's not real NTSC output, so you cannot capture it as NTSC. It's a messy output quasi signal for a TV, not a capture card/device.)

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  #12  
06-26-2011, 02:33 AM
Bilge Bilge is offline
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I wasn't expecting much anyway, I can use this as abit of capture practice until I can hunt something better down

Cheers for the information!
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  #13  
07-02-2011, 08:58 AM
Bilge Bilge is offline
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I got hold of the ATI Radeon X600 Pro, but it never came with any cables. Do you guys know any good places to buy them?
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07-04-2011, 03:49 AM
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There are some on Amazon right now: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...SIN=B003VD0S8M
Or search eBay for "ATI purple" and you'll get several returned results for the purple breakout box dongle.

Beyond that, you'll need either the internal or external audio wiring.
External wiring for sale: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...SIN=B003L1AF0K
Count the pin holes on your card -- be sure it's 8-pin. Not all cards were.

The internal wiring can come from any computer store.
More on that wiring here: No sound on ATI All In Wonder capture?
Some cards use 3-pin to 3-pin, 4-pin to 4-pin, or even a crossover of 3-pin to 4-pin.
A recent example of the crossover was discussed here: What type of internal audio cable for my AIW 7500 and which sound card!?

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  #15  
07-04-2011, 01:25 PM
Bilge Bilge is offline
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Thanks kpmedia!

I've already ordered the Purple ATI box, but I think I need one of these too;



I can't seem to find one anywhere To be honest i'm not even sure what it's called!
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07-04-2011, 01:47 PM
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The name for it is in the manual. I don't have a manual for this card, however.
A similar brick is on the ATI AIW 9600 that I have, but I misplaced its manual years ago.

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  #17  
08-31-2011, 11:56 AM
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A few weeks back I found a VGA AVI/O Hub, I installed my x600 using Catalyst v6.2 & MMC 9.06.1, but I could not get a video signal from my VCR, I did recieve audio in the right channel only. After a lot of messing about reinstalling Catalyst and buying new cables I just gave up.

Now it's been a couple of weeks and I'm ready to try again, I was wondering if anyone has heard of anything like this before or is it most likely a problem with the x600 (bought used) or maybe a faulty purple box or vga hubcable (they were both bought as new).

I don't know if it matters but I used Windows XP Media Edition, I hope somebody can help
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09-01-2011, 07:44 AM
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Faulty cables is always possible.
Verify that all of the pins are in the purple breakout box, and match to the pins on the card input cable.

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09-04-2011, 07:37 AM
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I've checked the pins and bought a replacement video cable, still no joy

I may have to look for alternatives..
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09-04-2011, 11:03 AM
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Here's a link to the users guide for the AIW 9600 Pro. How to hook up, purple monster v. internal etc, I found it to be very useful. If the link does not work search Google for "aiw 9600 users guide", that should find it for you.


Attached Files
File Type: pdf ATI All In Wonder 9600 Manual (000039021).pdf (611.2 KB, 64 downloads)
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