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02-23-2024, 07:31 AM
Thermaltake Thermaltake is offline
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Hi everyone,

I am in a lot of pain and dilemma what VCR to choose. So I registered here to ask you for some help of picking up some good VCR and not to spend fortune on it hehe

I used to have some garbage LG LV4981 with 6 head, and now that head is half dead, so I decide to buy new second hand one on ebay, but I can't figure out what to choose. I have some tapes from 70/80/90 and 2000. And I'm digitalizing them so it's important to have VCR that reproduce good picture quality and soundand to read PAL and NTSC.

I was planning to buy some panasonic brand VCR but if you think some other brand and model for same money is better let me know.

I was doing a little reasearch on google, and I found on ebay NV-HS850 from panasonic is that ok VCR for 210 euros ? Or do you recommand some better one for price around that one ?

I know HS860 is better but his price is 350 euros, and for that one seller even offers 1 yr warranty.

NV-FS90 I found for 180 euros, but don't know anything about that model...

I found also JVC HR-S9500 for around 250 euros, don't know if this one is ok. Is there a difference between S9500 and S9500U ?

So any help would be appriciated (I also read a lot of posts here about VCRs)

EDIT:
On one other video forum, some user told me that JVC DD system is not good and that I need to aviod it. He told me that it tends to fail a lot. So if that's true I would avoid JVC's with that DD system.

Last edited by Thermaltake; 02-23-2024 at 08:16 AM.
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  #2  
02-23-2024, 08:22 AM
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Welcome.

That LG wasn't "6 heads". that was marketing nonsense. Almost all VCRs have 2 SP, 2 LP/ELP, and 2 audio. That includes all "4-head" and sometimes even "2-head" marketed units. The "6-head" was measurbating.

You're making a huge mistake shopping by price. These are not new items from Amazon, but used items that are 15-30 years old. Condition matters.

99% of eBay sellers morons, recyclers that think they found a brick of gold at an estate sale, boot sale, flea market, abandoned storage unit, etc. eBay descriptions of "tested" and "working" are total BS, with either ridiculous "testing" having been done (lights come on, etc), or the seller just lies about having done anything at all. These days, often the latter.

These VCRs were all in the $1k+ range when new.

Being PAL, you're actually lucky. PAL VCR prices are 25-50% of the used prices for quality NTSC VCRs. Part of that is because most of the world is PAL (thus more existed), but also some other reasons.

If you have PAL sources, and are in PAL lands, then buy from VCRshop, and only VCRshop. Don't screw around, don't take chances. Unless you want to spend your time fixing VCRs like he does, and not actually using VCRs to accomplish conversion projects.

If you try to skimp on $100, to be blunt, you're foolish. That's how you'll longer-term end up spending more money. It's negative economics. Yeah, some people will probably get all pissy that I wasn't super nicey-wicey here, that I wasn't overly gentle as if you were a scared kitten. But sometimes a person needs bluntness. I don't want you to make a costly mistake.

Only certain JVC DDs seem to be failing, not all. Mostly the 9600-9911 NTSC, and 8600-9700(ish) PAL. Other DD failures are rarer.

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  #3  
02-23-2024, 08:40 AM
Thermaltake Thermaltake is offline
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Hi, thanks for info. I was reading other posts and most of them are from you, so I guess you have a lot of knowledge about VCRs. And thanks for slap in the face hahaha I know that's a lot of money and it really hurts me to spend that much money on VCR. I'm in PAL land yes. Unfortunately I don't have VCRshop here in my country (Croatia), is there any website you suggest me to look at, that is not ebay or amazon. And is there any specific brand and model that you would suggest me to look at, and not to spend fortune on it ? I would like to have VCR that reads PAL and NTSC, and to have all that stuff to enhance picture so I could digitalize all my cassettes in highest video/audio quality as possible.
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  #4  
02-23-2024, 08:55 AM
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I started to use VCRs in a serious way back in 1992. I adopted S-VHS by the late 90s. So yeah, I've probably learned a few things since then.

When it comes to money spent, I often find it ironic that a person spends $1000+ on an iPhone with no second thoughts. Or they sign a contract for an overpriced carrier, to get a "free" phone -- with added insurance costs, of course!

Or they blow money on other worthless crap, be it daily Starbucks coffee, or even weed and hookers. It's about priorities. If you have decided to DIY a video project, I would suggest it's some % of a priority. Do it right, do it once. Do it cheap, do it wrong, do it again later, and for twice+ the price.

VCRShop is online, based in Netherlands, and he ships all over Europe.

JVC/Panasonic S-VHS VCr line/field TBC is what you need/want.

You do not want a VCR that reads both. Those VCRs are compromised in quality. Get a good PAL VCR for transfers. All PAL VCRs play NTSC as a non-format for capturing, but good enough to watch.

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  #5  
02-23-2024, 09:17 AM
Thermaltake Thermaltake is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
I started to use VCRs in a serious way back in 1992. I adopted S-VHS by the late 90s. So yeah, I've probably learned a few things since then.

When it comes to money spent, I often find it ironic that a person spends $1000+ on an iPhone with no second thoughts. Or they sign a contract for an overpriced carrier, to get a "free" phone -- with added insurance costs, of course!

Or they blow money on other worthless crap, be it daily Starbucks coffee, or even weed and hookers. It's about priorities. If you have decided to DIY a video project, I would suggest it's some % of a priority. Do it right, do it once. Do it cheap, do it wrong, do it again later, and for twice+ the price.

VCRShop is online, based in Netherlands, and he ships all over Europe.

JVC/Panasonic S-VHS VCr line/field TBC is what you need/want.

You do not want a VCR that reads both. Those VCRs are compromised in quality. Get a good PAL VCR for transfers. All PAL VCRs play NTSC as a non-format for capturing, but good enough to watch.
Thanks.

I am having dillema between Panasonic and JVC.

Still in VCRShop I am searching there now, and I didn't find anything worth for what I need under 200-300 euros.
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  #6  
02-23-2024, 09:31 AM
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Your numbers are too cheap. He currently has nice JVCs for 349 and above.

BTW, anybody getting a deck from him, and reading my psts like this one, should tell him lordsmurf sent you. I don't get anything for it, but I just want him to know where his traffic is coming from.

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  #7  
02-23-2024, 09:36 AM
Thermaltake Thermaltake is offline
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Yeah I saw models like S9500 that doesn't have that little doors on the front of composite and s vid. outs.

Or that HR-S9600EU that have cracked front plastic of VCR for ridiculus 500 euro lol

I am a little picky when it comes to that.

Kind of not sure if I should really buy anything from seller like that.

Is JVC better than panasonic in terms of viewing picture on TV when you compare it to similar priced model ?

Last edited by Thermaltake; 02-23-2024 at 09:50 AM.
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  #8  
02-23-2024, 10:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thermaltake View Post
Yeah I saw models like S9500 that doesn't have that little doors on the front of composite and s vid. outs.
I am a little picky when it comes to that.
I think your expectations are clouded by seeing low-end consumer deck "features". However, look at 7600.

Quote:
Or that HR-S9600EU that have cracked front plastic of VCR for ridiculus 500 euro lol
Again, unreal expectations. What matters is performance, for these 20- to 30-year-old VCRs. Not scratche, little cracks in the plastic, etc. These are functional tools, like a hammer or refrigerator, not collectible vintage Star Wars figures (but noting even those have little imperfections, even AFA graded 9.x)

Quote:
Kind of not sure if I should really buy anything from seller like that.
A seller like what?

Quote:
Is JVC better than panasonic in terms of viewing picture on TV when you compare it to similar priced model ?
In general, yes, JVC is best. Panasonic tends to be a problematic money pit, and best reserved for situations where you longer term need it for certain tape issues you'r likely to face. JVC is best in 90%+ of situations. That's why pros and hobbyists have multiple decks. That's why a home DIY'er generally just needs a single really good JVC, and then outsource the few remaining tapes (if any) to a competent service that's equipped to handle those stubborn few tapes.

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  #9  
02-23-2024, 11:12 AM
Thermaltake Thermaltake is offline
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Well I know they needs to have some kind of scratches but not half of front face cracked

Seller that sell that kind of cracked VCRs for price like that, that's too high, because of that crack price needs to be way lower than that.

Ok JVC it is, but someone told me that DD systems tends to break or something and that I should avoid them. Is that true ? Or is it just some models that needs to be avoid from JVC ?

That one looks just fine yes, but it's out of stock.

Last edited by Thermaltake; 02-23-2024 at 11:25 AM.
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  #10  
02-23-2024, 11:24 AM
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VCR pricing is not based on cosmetics. Again, functional tools, not trophies. Furthermore, again, those units were closer to $1k when new, so it's a 50%+ discount now.

"someone told me" is not a valid reference. Again, the DD issue is partially correct, but it does not affect every deck. It's mostly concentrated in latter/EOL 9000 series NTSC and 8000/90000 PAL. (PAL used 8xxx/9xxx where NTSC used 9xxx only.)

7600, 7611, 7700, 7711

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  #11  
02-23-2024, 11:31 AM
Thermaltake Thermaltake is offline
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Got it.

I found JVC HR-S7711EU probably EU plug I assume that letters at the end, and S7722 also. How come that S7711 don't have that foldable front and all those sharpness correction and other options like some models do, I would like to have that kind of stuff.

-- merged --

I found here

https://forum.videohelp.com/threads/...-JVC-SVHS-VCRs

you are telling that "the only filter the 7700 doesn't have is video stabiliser and possibly audio level control"

Do need that video stabiliser and audio level control ?

What about model JVC HR-S7960E is this better than 7722 ?
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  #12  
02-23-2024, 02:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thermaltake View Post
Do need that video stabiliser and audio level control ?
Stabilizer causes problems. Never use it.
Audio level is for recording.
So no to both.

Quote:
What about model JVC HR-S7960E is this better than 7722 ?
Not better, not worse, just different.

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  #13  
02-23-2024, 02:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
Stabilizer causes problems. Never use it.
Audio level is for recording.
So no to both.
Not better, not worse, just different.
Thanks for info.

Should I go for that one or 7722 ? What do you recommand ?

-- merged --

I kind of like that S9760E it looks dope

-- merged --

I don't know about you, but I find that vcrshop very unprofessional shop. I email them, send offer, send offer on ebay no answer.

Any other vcr shop in europe you suggest, or maybe I should look on ebay for that 1-2 yr warranty ones.
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  #14  
02-24-2024, 08:03 PM
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WTF? It's the weekend.

You seem to be confused about what you're buying here, and from whom:
- This isn't some new Chinese garbage sitting in an Amazon warehouse. Operators are not standing, there's no 24/7 customer service.
- You're dealing with 20- to 30-year-old tech here, and it must be painstakingly refurbished to be in proper condition again. It's essentially slow custom work, and is only done by individuals or tiny shops. (And if you piss them off this early in a transaction, realize they can, and sometimes do, tell you to bugger off. You need them more than they need you.)

I suggest you recalibrate your expectations here.

If you want to buy some eBay garbage, and learn your lesson the hard way, by all means, go for it. And good luck on "warranties" past 30 days, does not exist, no way to hold them to it.

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  #15  
02-25-2024, 01:50 AM
Thermaltake Thermaltake is offline
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I send offers on Thursday, no concrete answer. Only and just one answer that I got from seller on ebay was yesterday. Looks like they answer on weekends too, if they feel like it Guess they don't want my money, it's that big of a deal to lower the price for 40 euros or just to say no it's too low or something, but no answer and knowing that they can answer if they want, sorry but to me that's unprofessional.

There are few more VCR shops with 100% rating giving 1-2 yr warranty instead of only 30 days on device, so I'll take a look what they have to offer instead.

Last edited by Thermaltake; 02-25-2024 at 02:20 AM.
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  #16  
02-25-2024, 02:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thermaltake View Post
I send offers on Thursday, no concrete answer. Only and just one answer that I got from seller on ebay was yesterday..
So you're making offers on eBay, even though we've warned you about bad VCRs on eBay?

... noting that VCRShop does sometimes sell a few select units on eBay, but it's better to visit him online directly.

You have no patience.
Asking a question Thurs, and receiving a reply Sat, is perfectly fine. eBay is mostly individuals, not megacorps with 24/7 support staff. (And congratulations. You're actually making me defend eBay sellers from your unreal ridiculous expectations.)

However:
He doesn't owe you anything.
He doesn't have to lower prices.
He doesn't even have to acknowledge your eBay offer at all, and can simply let it expire.

To sum up this thread so far: You want a cosmetically perfect VCR, for cheap, and yesterday.

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  #17  
02-25-2024, 02:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
So you're making offers on eBay, even though we've warned you about bad VCRs on eBay?
To that vcrshop on ebay yes.

I know you warned me, but like I said I'm not sending messages to individual persons, I send them to other vcr shops that offers 1-2 yr warranty and have good selling rating, so they are sure not fake or scam.

What do you think about S6850 is it better than 7722 and S9760E ?
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  #18  
02-25-2024, 02:30 AM
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6850 is inferior to 7722, assuming condition on both equal. The TBC is the different factor. Obviously good 7722 best, but not if it's semi-functional junk. And when you shop eBay, semi-fuctional junk is the norm, not the exception.

Those "warranties" are a joke. No way to enforce.

I'm tired of seeing people screwed over by bad eBay sellers, but some people just will not listen. (And I'm not even suggesting my own gear here, but somebody else I respect. For the conspiracy nutters that would suggest my advice is tied to me selling something. Nope!)

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  #19  
02-25-2024, 02:47 AM
Thermaltake Thermaltake is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
6850 is inferior to 7722, assuming condition on both equal. The TBC is the different factor. Obviously good 7722 best, but not if it's semi-functional junk. And when you shop eBay, semi-fuctional junk is the norm, not the exception.

Those "warranties" are a joke. No way to enforce.

I'm tired of seeing people screwed over by bad eBay sellers, but some people just will not listen. (And I'm not even suggesting my own gear here, but somebody else I respect. For the conspiracy nutters that would suggest my advice is tied to me selling something. Nope!)
Oh ok.

I really like that S9760E but I won't give 400 euros for that VCR, that's way too much. 350 would be still high but I would go for that. I mean 10 year old device for price like, it's just funny. I know they cost 1000$ but as soon as they leave store their price went down, as for everything else smartphones, cars, TVs...and as time past price went down a lot for it. So that's more for VCR enthusiast price realisticly max. price for VCR like that would be more 200-250 euros.

I services few VCRs myself I work with electronics and stuff, and it's not that big of a deal. Picked few from garbage and service them and they still work fine. I know not all models are same, some are more complex, but still it won't be problem to me to service them.

I don't know that much about models and features that they got so, that's why I ask here for help.

-- merged --

Just bought JVC HR-S7960E for 350 euros.

Did I got the good VCR, what do you think ? Could I get anything better for that kind of money, your opinion ?
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  #20  
02-25-2024, 09:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thermaltake View Post
I really like that S9760E but I won't give 400 euros for that VCR, that's way too much.
Based on what metrics? Because just stating "400 is too high, but 350 is fine" is completely random numbers.

Quote:
I mean 10 year old device for price like, it's just funny. I know they cost 1000$ but as soon as they leave store their price went down, as for everything else smartphones, cars, TVs...and as time past price went down a lot for it.
No, your understandings are wrong, very pedestrian.

Quality AV/photo gear is not the same as typical overpriced smartphones, or depreciating cars, or obsolesced disposable TVs. Quality AV/photo gear holds values (not consumer fodder gear sold in Walmart/Asda), and generally commands a 50%-200% price depending on what it is, condition, who's selling it (ie, quality of refurb'er determines quality of unit). In fact, many cars, phones, and TVs now sell for more than MSRP. It entirely depends on (1) exact models, and (2) exact condition.

If you just want some random junk VCR, you can find those under $20 easily at thrift stores, boot sales, flea markets, etc. But if you want JVC/Panasonic S-VHS VCRs with line TBC, then you'll be paying anywhere from 50% to 200% MSRP to get them. Why? Because it takes times, parts, efforts, customizing, to restore that to original condition. Those were $1k machines that were 2x+ as complicated (to repair, maintain) as a compared to generic consumer VCR.

Consider one of these S-VHS VCRs more like a restored/"used" classic car, not a junker from online Facebook/etc classified.

Quote:
So that's more for VCR enthusiast price realisticly max. price for VCR like that would be more 200-250 euros.
This is not realistic for quality JVC/Panasonic S-VHS VCRs with line TBC. You price yourself out of TBCs, which harms quality. But it's not just about the line TBCs. The stability of the tape is better, due to the better build quality of the units. It is often literally night-and-day quality difference, as if it were two entirely separate recordings being played back (and not the same tape in different decks).

Quote:
I services few VCRs myself I work with electronics and stuff, and it's not that big of a deal. Picked few from garbage and service them and they still work fine. I know not all models are same, some are more complex, but still it won't be problem to me to service them.
I don't know that much about models and features that they got so, that's why I ask here for help.
Your limited knowledge of consumer VCRs pulled from the bin does not matter here. That's like you comparing a microwave dinner to a meal from a professional gourmet chef. Or more accurately, "found" food from a dumpster to a chef.

Quote:
Just bought JVC HR-S7960E for 350 euros.
Did I got the good VCR, what do you think ? Could I get anything better for that kind of money, your opinion ?
7960 is a good model. But whether the exact unit you bought is actually good is another story entirely. Condition matters more than exact models. This is why who/where you get a deck matters more than price.

€350 is currently about $375. In NTSC, $375 buys you untested/"tested" eBay schlock from a recycler, gear that was often literally dumpster dived offline and sold online. So you need to realize how insanely cheap $375 for a PAL deck is. Trying to squeeze out another $50 is asinine, you're already at the price point that tempts fate (ie, buys junk).

I don't want to seem harsh in this thread, but it's as if you're not reading what I'm writing. You seem to want perfection for pennies, and instantly. Karen'ish, even. But unicorns will not fly out of your ass on command. Video can be very formulaic, with certain expectations, and certain near-guaranteed results for doing or not doing certain things. Buying cheap VCRs from random people on eBay is a consistent formula for disappointment or disaster.

So far, you are avoiding cheap VCRs, but you're grousing about it the entire time. I've explained why those prices are what they are, and why you're also already getting a bargain in PAL. You need to resist barfing out random numbers, thinking those are in any way realistic.

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