Quantcast Problems using the JVC HR-S9600 S-VHS VCR? - digitalFAQ Forum
05-22-2018, 09:31 AM
MrMaki MrMaki is offline
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Hello everyone!

I've been digitizing our old home videos (PAL region) for maybe two years now. It turned out to be such an interesting hobby that I found myself buying more and more hardware to get the best quality possible of our old memories.

Out of 4 VHS players I own now, I'd prefer to use the apparently high end JVC HR-S9600, basically the latest of the JVC S-VHS line in Europe, but it comes with its own set of problems, which I'll describe here in hopes of finding a solution.

1. When enabling TBC/DNR, the image sometimes jumps up and down, especially on older tapes. I know this is a known problem, but I've never seen a recommended solution if one wants to keep the TBC activated for those special tapes.

2. Muffled audio output on older tapes. I can capture the same section of a certain tape 6 times and always get totally different audio output, but most of the time, it's really dull compared to a different VCR (which sadly introduces audio noise). I had the JVC in for a checkup but they couldn't find anything wrong with it. It also looks really clean on the inside, and I cleaned the heads with isopropol alcohol. The only thing that might need renewing is the grease at the bottom, but I'm not sure. Any guides to restore VCRs out there? Anyway, is this a common problem with JVC?

Anything I can do about these issues?

That's it for now, thanks.
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Someday, 12:01 PM
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05-22-2018, 03:03 PM
themaster1 themaster1 is online now
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it's probably a calibration problem( to do on a tape by tape basis)
Recently i have found out that my jvc can play hifi perfectly well (with no picture jumps, drops...). All i did was to put a s-vhs inside and press record. Doing so triggered the auto calibration checks.
My gut feeling says to me it's all about tape tension in there and old tapes don't help either (become loose with time and sticky somewhat)

What you can try is go to the end of your tape and press record for a brief moment so it can calibrate finelly
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05-23-2018, 01:23 AM
MrMaki MrMaki is offline
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Originally Posted by themaster1 View Post
What you can try is go to the end of your tape and press record for a brief moment so it can calibrate finelly
Wow, I didn't know that was possible. The tape with audio problems seems indeed to be rather loose around the audio head. It kind of ripples on one side. That's why I brought it in for Check-up, I assumed it had something to do with the grease being bad. I'll try out your suggestion as soon as possible.

I've read in some threads around here talking about a great book on maintaining VCRs or something. Can't find them at the moment, does anyone know which one it was?
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12-01-2019, 06:03 AM
tcpcs7027 tcpcs7027 is offline
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I've had two HR-S9600s now and there have been consistent problems which have ended up making me dump both of them -

1. Linear audio being extremely poor, as described above - no amount of realignment of the heads does any good;

2. The Dynamic Drum crunching the top edge of the tape (coincidentally where the linear audio is recorded) - I found wherever I'd searched using Time Jog, the edge of the tape was crinkled, but not where I hadn't;

3. When stopping Fast Wind in either direction, the feed spool in either case doesn't stop immediately and loosely spools a load of tape into the cassette and sometimes into the machine. So unless you immediately follow that up with playing the tape for about 20 seconds until it's all drawn back in again, you'll get a screwed up tape and, if Ejecting straight afterwards, the loose tape gets caught over the loading posts.

Meanwhile, I've had 3 HR-S8600s and found them consistently perfect. The only reason I've ever had to replace those is when the dreaded "now I'm dead" problem has surfaced, which is the 8600's major downfall - once that happens there's hardly ever any hope for it no matter what you do which can buy some time but that's all. But my biggest regret was replacing my 2nd 8600 with a 9600 (my 2nd 9600) thinking I couldn't possible have the same problems I had with the 1st 9600, but I did, after not very long. I went back to a 3rd 8600 and now I'm happy as Larry.
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12-01-2019, 09:47 AM
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lordsmurf lordsmurf is offline
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DD doesn't cause feathering, that's overall alignment. Now something may be misaligned when the DD is engaged, but the DD itself doesn't cause it.

Linear audio from JVC has never been great, and highly depends on the tape itself.

The slack in the tape is from either a mistiming between drives, or just a weak motor that will eventually fail.

I've seen all of this. And not just on 9600 models, or the 9000 series, but pretty much any mid/late 90s to 2000s JVC S-VHS deck. This is just what happens when JVC decks age, often due to poor storage or lack of maintenance (though not always). Climate also plays a role. Do not consider JVC "bad" because of these faults, because all VCRs have typical/standard symptoms of aging. Panasonic has caps (and some other things, all of which take a backseat to caps).

8600 .... that's a PAL deck, correct? HR-S8600 is PAL, similiar to 9600.
BR-8600 would be a really old feature-less NTSC "editing" No deck that not at all in the same league as the 9600. No TBC, etc. Not suggested.

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12-01-2019, 10:19 AM
hodgey hodgey is offline
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I believe it's possible to adjust the dynamic drum tilt for seeking, but it needs a service remote which is hard to come by. Granted there may be something faulty with it too, the DD system can be a bit fragile as many forum users can tell you,. I suppose the dynamic drum makes correct tape alignment and tension (for the whole tape path, not just the main guide posts) extra important.

8600 .... that's a PAL deck, correct? HR-S8600 is PAL, similiar to 9600.
It is a PAL one. PAL has a HR-S8xxx series sitting in between to the HR-S9xxx and HR-S7xxx series. It looks like the EU 8xxx models are closer to the equivalent US 7xxx models, while the EU 7xxx models are a bit more basic. The EU 7500 has no TBC or DD, 7600 TBC but no DD. Then there are also a few similar Philips models with TBC but no DD. As LS mentioned there are some older models with similar (or in some cases the same?) model numbers which makes everything a bit more confusing.
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