I've encountered several problematic Video8 tapes lately, that I can't get to track properly in any of our cameras or VCRs. I can't really upload an example capture right now as it's customer tapes, though it's similar to the example here
here, though in my case there has usually been only one taller (maybe 1/4 - 1/5 of the image) noise bar on the top or bottom.
Do the other people here that digitize video8 have any suggestions for dealing with this sort of problem tapes? I've seen trying the original camcorder suggested, but though that's not possible in all cases as it may be broken or unavailable.
Playing tapes back on our Sony EV-C2000 Hi8 deck in shuttle mode (at normal speed) can be helpful for tracking on some tapes, there seem to be some sort of frame sync in the deck that's active when using jog/shuttle and pause and for some reason the tracking is different from normal playback. Unfortunately the sound is muted in this mode, but at least it's helped me get a stable picture on parts even my TBC-3000 couldn't handle.
On the flip side my Sony CCD-TR840E camcorder seems to have a special ability to play back sound where none of the other devices do, no idea why, maybe they mute if the sound is to crackly?
All of the Sony camcorders I've used (except the really old CCD-V100 video8 PRO camera) has had tendency to blue screen if the signal is too bad, don't know if there is a way to disable this? The Sony VCRs, Hitachi D8 cam and Samsung Hi8 cam (though this one's missing a tape guide so the image output is super warped and unusable anyhow) we got don't seem to do this.
I even tried to mess with the alignment on one of my cameras to see if it could help track a bad tape, but it didn't seem to work. Though, at least I'm starting to get a hang of aligning these things now.
Do the Sony D8 cameras track any better? I don't have any working ones at the moment, I've been trying to get a pinch roller for my DCR-TRV460, either new or from another camera but no luck so far.
Alternatively, do the high-end TBC-equipped decks, or the professional broadcast decks, or any other device have any extra tracking capabilities?
The current working video8/hi8 gear we've got if you got any extra suggestions (not including D8 only gear):
2x Sony CCD-TRV66 Hi8 XR camcorder
Sony CCD-TR840E Hi8 XR camcorder
Sony CCD-TRV218 Hi8 Camcorder
Sony CCD-TR805E Hi8 Camcorder
Sony CCD-V100 Professional Video8 camera
Sony EV-C2000 Hi8 VCR
Sony EV-C400 Hi8 VCR (though I think this has some head damage, not really using it)
Sony EVO-250 Video8 portable VCR (NTSC)
Hitachi VM-D865LE Digital8 camera (with Hi8/Video8 playback)