Quantcast Using the RetroTINK-2X as an alternative capture device for VHS? - digitalFAQ Forum
Go Back    Forum > Digital Video > Video Project Help > Capture, Record, Transfer

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
  #1  
11-03-2018, 05:55 PM
NJRoadfan NJRoadfan is offline
Premium Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 1,050
Thanked 325 Times in 266 Posts
For more information, including pricing and resellers, see the official website: http://www.retrotink.com/

When I first saw the RetroTINK-2X become available, I saw some potential in the device to possibly replace existing analog capture solutions. HDMI capture solutions have come down in cost and have become commonplace in recent years. Also, classic analog inputs (particularly S-Video) are rapidly vanishing from new TVs. Anyway, here are my initial findings with this little box.

Testing setup:
-JVC HR-S7800U SVHS VCR
-AV Toolbox AVT-8710 TBC
-AVerMedia HD DVR PCIe HDMI capture card
-Various cables
-S-Video and audio are connected to the RetroTINK. Output mode is set to "pass thru".

My first test with the device was to see if I could get away with not needing any TBC at all in the capture chain. The short answer is NO, you definitely need an external full frame TBC. Tape glitches will cause both video and audio dropouts (assuming you are using the RetroTINK's audio inputs and not a soundcard). Keeping video and audio synchronized even with these dropouts isn't a problem though as the RetroTINK's HDMI output seems to remain active at all times to keep the capture card happy (you won't see frame drops in your capture program). Once I added the AVT-8710 into the capture workflow, both video and audio output from the RetroTINK became stable.

I have not done objective tests on video quality (test patterns, etc.), but the device seems to be on par with the ATI 600 and the AIW cards that I have. The ADC has a 5-line adaptive 2D comb filter on the composite input. One downside is that one cannot adjust picture controls like hue, color, brightness, and contrast (HDMI capture devices won't let you adjust this either). You will need a video processor to control that. One good thing is the input video (at least from my test tapes) appears to not have crushed blacks or whites. The histogram in VirtualDUB shows very little video above 240 and below 16. The ADC captures in 4:2:2 YUY.

Also, I have not tested capture with the 2x line doubler enabled. With 480i interlaced video, this applies a bob de-interlace to sources when converting them to 480p, something I wanted to avoid. There is also a video smoothing filter, but this requires the 2x line doubler to be enabled. I am also unable to test PAL and SECAM capture as I don't have any video sources that output those formats.

So should you get one for VHS capture? Maybe....I can't recommend it until I do further testing. If you plan on using it to add composite and S-Video to a new TV, it makes a fine addition. It also works well with its target market of video game consoles, but do try to avoid composite video output. If you console supports S-Video and component, use that instead. Also keep in mind that the device only supports 240p/288p and 480i/576i video. 480p progressive video is not supported at all on the component input (for that get an OSSC).
Reply With Quote
Someday, 12:01 PM
admin's Avatar
Ads / Sponsors
 
Join Date: ∞
Posts: 42
Thanks: ∞
Thanked 42 Times in 42 Posts
  #2  
11-03-2018, 06:57 PM
NJRoadfan NJRoadfan is offline
Premium Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 1,050
Thanked 325 Times in 266 Posts
Quick addendum: The RetroTINK-2X is not immune to Macrovision. Playing back tapes with Macrovision causes random video dropouts, further enforcing the need for an external TBC.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
02-01-2020, 07:43 PM
bakerie bakerie is offline
Premium Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 45
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Hi,

Sorry for updating an old thread, but this is exactly what I'm looking at doing and you're the only one that mentioned it on this forum.

Did you ever get any further with your testing on this?

RetroTINK-2X clones are popping up now. Just wondering if a 'S-VHS -> TBC -> RetroTINK-2X -> HDMI record' might be a feasible workflow.

I've multiple Samsung TVs here that constantly screw up showing broadcast interlaced content, so I'd be encoding in progressive anyway.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
02-01-2020, 07:47 PM
NJRoadfan NJRoadfan is offline
Premium Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 1,050
Thanked 325 Times in 266 Posts
You need a full frame TBC to capture with it, otherwise there will be frame drops. You can directly capture 480i video with it, I would not use the bob deinterlacer (do it in software). I can't vouch for any clone devices as they can be a crap shot in terms of quality (think EZCap clones).
Reply With Quote
  #5  
02-01-2020, 08:11 PM
bakerie bakerie is offline
Premium Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 45
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Quote:
I would not use the bob deinterlacer
Oh, why's that? I was hoping it was decent :/
Reply With Quote
  #6  
02-01-2020, 08:15 PM
lordsmurf's Avatar
lordsmurf lordsmurf is offline
Site Staff | Video
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 8,977
Thanked 1,504 Times in 1,312 Posts
This device was made for playing old console video games. And it's best left to that purpose. Using it for video capture isn't at all suggested. It was not designed for the purpose, and it shows.

Deinterlacing will be atrocious, even bested by an outdated software method, and far behind quality of current methods like QTGMC.

Do not do this. You'll make your videos worse than the original tapes.

- Did my advice help you? Then become a Premium Member and support this site.
- Find television shows, cartoons, DVDs and Blu-ray releases at the TVPast forums.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
02-02-2020, 12:32 AM
latreche34 latreche34 is offline
Free Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 613
Thanked 72 Times in 70 Posts
I'm not a big fan of capturing from HDMI for the purpose of VHS but if you must there are better and more stable alternatives out there such as the KEY DIGITAL KD-VP8 and Gefen CI GTV-COMPSVID-2-HDMIS just to name few, They were designed at the hay day of analog video so they have some sort of frame buffer/TBCish. Again I'm not suggesting to capture that way, I used both the above devices for display purposes and they are amazing.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
02-02-2020, 11:04 AM
bakerie bakerie is offline
Premium Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 45
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Cheers for the input as always LordSmurf!

latreche34:
I really like the look of the "Gefen CI GTV-COMPSVID-2-HDMIS". Especially since it can be got at a reasonable price in the US. Unfortunately the cost will double if I try and import it. You don't happen to know of a similar unit that was more prevalent in Europe/UK?
Reply With Quote
  #9  
02-02-2020, 01:31 PM
latreche34 latreche34 is offline
Free Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 613
Thanked 72 Times in 70 Posts
I listed those two that I personally used and sold them about a year or so ago due to non use, Just check UK websites and type in keywords such as "composite HDMI", "S-Video HDMI", "analog HDMI" ....etc. eBay lets you save a search and notify you by e-mail when it pops up.
Reply With Quote
The following users thank latreche34 for this useful post: bakerie (02-06-2020)
  #10  
02-06-2020, 03:19 PM
bakerie bakerie is offline
Premium Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 45
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by latreche34 View Post
I listed those two that I personally used and sold them about a year or so ago due to non use, Just check UK websites and type in keywords such as "composite HDMI", "S-Video HDMI", "analog HDMI" ....etc. eBay lets you save a search and notify you by e-mail when it pops up.
Yeah, you could wait for ages and you might pick up something used at auction, but for new stuff (at a reasonable price) the whole market seems to be just flooded with the same two units (under different branding, all Chinese stuff).

One is approx <10, the other is around 30. I was willing to pay up to 100, but I don't see anything in that price range. Reviews linking to units in the 100 range lead to products that are no longer manufactured.


The biggest issue, is that apart from a few camera phone pics on eBay, no one has done proper reviews of this stuff.
I just said f*ck it and bought one of each I'll put up a proper video comparison when they arrive
Reply With Quote
  #11  
02-06-2020, 04:15 PM
msgohan msgohan is online now
Free Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Posts: 1,107
Thanked 238 Times in 210 Posts
One problem with the Chinese HDMI converters, besides lack of S-video input, is that they force upscaling.

Also, when I tried one ages ago, I found that I couldn't get a reasonable color/levels output that didn't look super-processed.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
02-06-2020, 04:38 PM
bakerie bakerie is offline
Premium Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 45
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by msgohan View Post
One problem with the Chinese HDMI converters, besides lack of S-video input, is that they force upscaling..
The more expensive one has S-Video in. It remains to be seen if it's actually S-Video, or just converted to composite!


Quote:
Originally Posted by msgohan View Post
Also, when I tried one ages ago, I found that I couldn't get a reasonable color/levels output that didn't look super-processed
Yes, for the cheaper one, any video on youtube that I can find that are probably the same model, have this problem. Blacks are super blacked and colours are over saturated. I'd imagine this is done intentionally as it makes the video look "better" to the casual user. I will be opening these devices up to see what's inside. Colour correction etc is probably controlled by the firmware, but you never know!

It'll certainly be interesting to see if the more expensive one looks in anyway better.
Reply With Quote
Reply




Tags
hdmi capture, retrotink2x, vhs capture devices

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Capture with AVR+HDMI vs. analog capture device? bgalakazam Capture, Record, Transfer 3 10-31-2019 04:39 PM
Capture PAL VHS and Hi8 with USB device? aalucard Capture, Record, Transfer 8 09-24-2017 01:32 PM
What is the best capture device for Mac? waloshin Capture, Record, Transfer 0 07-20-2016 11:22 AM
Advice on VHS capture setup (capture device, proc-amp, recommended connections) Simon76 Capture, Record, Transfer 12 12-23-2010 03:46 AM
I need a capture device that does 768*576! lzrplayr Capture, Record, Transfer 4 02-11-2010 08:38 AM

Thread Tools



 
All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:16 AM