Quantcast JVC SR-S388E (PAL model) has frame TBC? - digitalFAQ Forum
05-17-2019, 03:52 PM
D.Page D.Page is offline
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Hi all.

Darren, from London.

Some help with the JVC SR-S388E (PAL model) would be appreciated, as I've just purchased one and there is limited info about this model.

I've read talk on an old thread regarding this model that its built in TBC is able to defeat copy protection. I find this hard to believe seeing as the JVC's built in TBC is presumably line-based.

Could he be mistaken about its ability of defeating copy protection, or is it the case that a line TBC is capable of defeating copy protection (potentially)?

The SR-S388E seems to be based around the HR-S7000EK. I don't know if there was ever an NTSC equivalent over the pond. The HR-S7000EK was a great deck, I had two (I still have one). This model, however, lacked any built in TBC, sadly.

The HR-S7000EK had a significant inherent design problem, though - the head drum was designed in such a way that could suffer from insufficient grounding. When new, there was rarely any problem wih them, but as they age, the characteristic horizontal comet tails at certain horizontal locations on screen ruined an otherwise great playback picture.

JVC did subsequently release a mod pack to fix the issue. Sadly, the one I have here does not have this mod pack installed and it has horrendous on-screen horizontal comet tails as a result of static/insufficient grounding. No amount of cleaning/polishing of the physical link between top contact points and the top of the head drum has led to any success in clearing the issue up with my one.

Will be keeping a close eye on this pro version when I get it. The first sign of Hailey's comet shooting across the screen and it will be going straight back.

Last edited by D.Page; 05-17-2019 at 04:02 PM.
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05-17-2019, 04:08 PM
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Do you have a link to that old thread?

JVC VCRs don't have frame TBCs. Just line.

Remember that copy protection is an artificial video error. Not only are there different types of Macrovision, but implementation can vary. And Macrovision isn't the only anti-copy scheme. What this means is that, perhaps, for a tape, as a one-off oddity, a line TBC was actually able to quash the false protection. But that's not normal.

I believe that the 388E isn't too dissimilar from the HR-S7600U (NTSC). I'm not 100% certain, but like 90%.

These days, for PAL VCRs, VCRshop.nl tends to be your best bet. He has lots, for a decent price, and is a nice guy. There's even a chance he can add the mod pack, ask him. If he's anything like me, he has spare parts from various models, for repair/mod needs.

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05-17-2019, 04:27 PM
D.Page D.Page is offline
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Sure, LS.

Post #3, in the following thread:


I recently had to return a JVC HR-S9600EU back to VCRShop.nl where I purchased one from. He described condition as being "good", but it had several bad digs and scrapes to the front and top. I saw the one I received reappear back for sale on his site (same four digit number printed on a label on the top of the unit, a system he likes to use with the products he has for sale) and he didn't amend his description to more accurately reflect its condition. I conclude from this that descriptions on this site have to be taken with a 'large pinch of salt'.

Incidentally, I now have two HR-S9600EU decks I am happy with.
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05-22-2019, 01:07 PM
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Received my SR-S388E today.

As soon as a tape has been playing for five or ten minutes, and the unit begins to warm up from cold, the comet tails begin to appear in various locations on the screen, just like with the HR-S7000EK without mod pack.

So disappointing. I will be returning it for a refund and will not try to purchase another of these models.
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