Originally Posted by rialle
Looks like you may be correct. It just played on my TV perfectly.
He is correct, of course. This has nothing to do with whether you cleaned the head.
A tip before you buy something next time: read 1-star reviews. Here is just one example of a negative review that indicates this device sucks for direct VHS input: https://www.amazon.com/gp/customer-r...SIN=B07H287NRC
1.0 out of 5 stars
Converts to video, but screws it up, not usable
Reviewed in the United States on June 2, 2021
It did create an output file, but it's a mess. It plays about a half second of clean video, then plays a frame from a few seconds ago, then plays maybe a quarter second of clean video then half a new frame then half a frame from some arbitrary time ago. After that it apparently gets bored and shows a frame shifted up by half and something else on the bottom, then repeats that performance but left/right rather than up/down. Designed to give you a headache. Note to Amazon: in the "Products related to this item" and "Frequently bought together" sections, please add Tylenol, Excedrin, and Advil.
Based on other reviews I tried it on three computers. None worked. Two computers (Windows 10) did generate video files, but the files were chopped up sliced-and-diced messes like described above. One of those showed the video live as it was being recorded, and one didn't. Then I tried it on an old Windows 2000 computer. The software installed and ran, but clicking on the tab that provides capture doesn't do anything (it stays on the "edit" tab, not that you have anything to edit). So I couldn't even get choppy video out of that one.
Modern USB capture devices are sold on the promise of converting old home movies, but they don't actually work for this purpose because they aren't engineered to decode the poor-quality sync signals coming from VHS. A common solution is to add a "DVD recorder passthrough" to massage the syncs and give the stupid USB stick a compliant analog signal to digitize.