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  #21  
06-17-2021, 01:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pk_vhs View Post
If he were to make a "RetroTINK-VHS" what would the ideal set of features, inputs, and outputs be?
Don't get fancy, s-video.
Composite if you must.
HDMI is a can of worms, don't go there.

Quote:
Is there an existing good modern software application
The VirtualDub2 fork is current. The TINK devs just need to work with the VirtualDub2 dev, to ensure compatibility without dropped frames. The major issue with Vdub2 is that it actually causes dropped frames internally, especially at start/stop. It's a mix of the older hardware, and the hackish/forked programming expansions. VirtualDub 1.9.x was usually flawless, while 1.10.x induced errors, the pre-2 FilterMod continued that, and the 2 made it worse.

But Win10 is still the main issue. It nukes capture cards, treats them like webcams. Stupid.

You're fighting VCRs, (lack of) TBCs, capture hardware, capture software, capture drivers, and OS
Any OS updates changes things, you're often screwed. And Win10 loves to update stuff, even if it breaks. The last Win10 update screwed my tablet, had to roll it back.

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(especially for Mac?!)
Nope. Good luck with that.

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  #22  
06-17-2021, 08:06 AM
hodgey hodgey is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by latreche34 View Post
Frame TBC alone is not enough, it could have problems locking on the VBI signal, A line TBC is a must for the frame TBC to work reliably. Like mentioned above if they offered lossless 480i out via USB or HDMI I will consider testing one.
Based on the pictures I've seen it seems to be using a Analog devices chip (though can't quite see which) so it's quite possible it has a line tbc feature as many of those do feature it. A few of their chip even feature an integrated frame tbc function, though that can also be implemented outside the chip as it's more about what's done with the raw output from it. As far as I've seen reported from other users, the line-tbc in those are pretty decent though not quite at the level of the stuff panasonic put in some of their dvd-recorders.

While it may not be the 100% best setup out there, a cut-down variant of it with line/frame tbc designed more towards videotape would be a big upgrade from your average usb dongle, I guess a bit like a cheaper, more user friendly ADV eval board, so interested to see where it leads. I guess a setup for tape capture would have only composite + s-video in and not need the scaling and deinterlacing stuff used for game stuff, so one could maybe use a simpler FPGA setup and hdmi chip.
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  #23  
06-17-2021, 02:57 PM
pk_vhs pk_vhs is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
Don't get fancy, s-video.
Composite if you must.
HDMI is a can of worms, don't go there.
So on the ideal "RetroTINK VHS", what hardware would the output be? USB?

Are there specifics for what the output signal format should be? If we were to contact Mike Chi and say "output hardware should be X, output signal should be Y" what are the answers?

Quote:
Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
The VirtualDub2 fork is current. The TINK devs just need to work with the VirtualDub2 dev, to ensure compatibility without dropped frames. The major issue with Vdub2 is that it actually causes dropped frames internally, especially at start/stop. It's a mix of the older hardware, and the hackish/forked programming expansions. VirtualDub 1.9.x was usually flawless, while 1.10.x induced errors, the pre-2 FilterMod continued that, and the 2 made it worse.

But Win10 is still the main issue. It nukes capture cards, treats them like webcams. Stupid.

You're fighting VCRs, (lack of) TBCs, capture hardware, capture software, capture drivers, and OS
Any OS updates changes things, you're often screwed. And Win10 loves to update stuff, even if it breaks. The last Win10 update screwed my tablet, had to roll it back.
Is modern computing really so bleak?

If the TINK-VHS had ideal output hardware and signal, could it be captured with a modern OS?

Last edited by pk_vhs; 06-17-2021 at 03:14 PM.
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  #24  
06-17-2021, 08:38 PM
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USB? Probably. Really no other choice.

I would not waste time simply having him create another capture card that already exists, and works in x64 Windows (aka, all of the eMPIA-based USB capture cards). I'd be far more interested in something modern that could improve on the ATI AIW aka Theatre 200 chips. MPEG hardware compression to 15-50mbps (Blu-ray and broadcast specs), adding 4:2:2 encoding profile. Potentially also (not instead of MPEG!) interlaced x264 at the "lossless" profile. Possibly even hardware based/assisted FFV1. Don't worry about the line+frame TBC aspect here (again, it's NOT a simple single-chip solution, regardless of Analog Devices marketing, or casual low knowledge on TBCs), and instead focus on quality capturing. If he has interest in quality capture cards like this, by all means have him contact me. Skip HD, skip cheap, niche quality card needed by videotape users.

Yes, modern OS sucks. It's bleak. Neither Microsoft nor Apple give a rat's ass about video capture, and Linux programmers don't seem to understand it very well either. Everything is treated as webcam and screen capture these days, which is bad for video.

The key for a bullet-proof TINK-VHS, in this anti-capture OS era, would be to create a custom software like ATI MMC. But better than MMC. For starters, MMC did too much (player, images, TV tuner, etc). But MMC's "TV" (capture) would always work (when the card drivers installed properly, using good driver versions, which was the thorn in user's sides), even when VirtualDub failed (in the old days, before VirtualDub 1.8.x and better 1.9.x). Most people don't remember how crappy VirtualDub 1.2/3/4/5 (and maybe .6?) were. VirtualDub's capture mode was vastly redone for those final versions (but again, the final 1.10.x version had problems for capture that was never fixed, and continued into FM/2 fork).

I have a wish list. Not anything frilly or stupid. And most users don't yet realize they'd need or want the features. It's not even a large list, just some essentials for quality capture, improving on the best we had during the peak of analog videotape capture cards.

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  #25  
06-22-2021, 01:23 PM
pk_vhs pk_vhs is offline
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Received a RetroTINK-2X MINI, if anyone has suggestions for how capture from it can be tested.
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  #26  
06-28-2021, 09:42 PM
cygnals cygnals is offline
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I've got a handy dandy dream device in mind, if ideas are still being welcomed.
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  #27  
06-28-2021, 10:55 PM
latreche34 latreche34 is offline
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We all got dreams but making the dream reality is the hurdle.
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  #28  
07-01-2021, 12:48 AM
ENunn ENunn is offline
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I'd love to get my hands on a Tink-5x, mainly to replace my OSSC, but I'd love to see how it handles VHS, especially when paired with a JVC with a line TBC. From what I've heard it's excellent. If it's really good with that, I wouldn't be surprised if this was a frame TBC alternative. That is, if there was 480i passthrough and if a high quality HDMI to S-Video converter exists out there (which is unlikely). Obviously a dedicated device with analog inputs and outputs would be preferred, but it's a thought. Maybe I'm a bit too ambitious. It's a very powerful device for analog signals, even if it is mainly meant for old game consoles.

Last edited by ENunn; 07-01-2021 at 01:00 AM.
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  #29  
07-01-2021, 02:19 AM
latreche34 latreche34 is offline
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There is new kid in the block, The company in the link below has 3 devices, One composite only for laser disc capture, one Y/C for use with an existing VCR and they have a moded VCR with a board in it for RF capture, They even claimed to have been working on a VCR mechanism that can capture at higher than real time speed:
https://forum.videohelp.com/threads/...alternative%29
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  #30  
07-16-2022, 02:52 AM
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I bought a RetroThink 2x Pro, mainly to connect my retro gaming consoles to modern monitors, but just tested it with some VHS material. Waiting on a S-Video cable, so it will be even better.

It puts out a nice picture, coming from my JVC with TBC.

--

On a side note: every time I research something VHS capturing related on Google, I end up here. And almost every time the census is "what you are trying or doing is nonsense". First it was BlackMagic being not good enough, now I read the same here about RetroThink.

I have owned some of the best (S)VHS recorders back in the 80s and early 90s, and my current JVC is up there too, so I know what a good recording looks like. What I captured recently isn't far off from what is possible, especially considering that today's tapes are all aged and deteriorating.

While some around here seem to hunt for the last few percent in image quality, others have long succeeded with their setup.

Somebody I know and have talk to a few times on this topic has been capturing VHS tapes for years. Just a week ago or so one of his suggestions was dismissed around here as "idiots on YouTube". Reality is, that he was able to grow a channel to 100k subs, all around captures from the 80s and 90s. I don't see anybody around here having any comparable success.

He has no problem using Blackmagic and 17 million views are a testament in itself.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9W37qO4fnjQ


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  #31  
07-16-2022, 03:44 AM
lollo2 lollo2 is offline
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I did not chek in detail, and the captures from your friend may be the best in the world, but just looking to the first 2 randomly chosen:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lvbrSjADEv4
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qIq3Xda9Qqc
I was not impressed. I can also be that the conditions of the tapes were not good, I don't know.

The large success of his video may be related to the content rather than on the quality of the captures/restoration.
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  #32  
07-16-2022, 05:04 AM
McCarthy McCarthy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lollo2 View Post
I did not chek in detail, and the captures from your friend may be the best in the world, but just looking to the first 2 randomly chosen:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lvbrSjADEv4
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qIq3Xda9Qqc
I was not impressed. I can also be that the conditions of the tapes were not good, I don't know.

The large success of his video may be related to the content rather than on the quality of the captures/restoration.

Vast majority of the quality is determined by the tapes and most tapes from the 80s and 90s have issues. Some around here need to put things into perspective. When I want the highest quality, I place my ass in-front of my 85 inch 4k OLED TV with a dedicated Dolby Atmos 5.2.4 system (no soundbar, no up-firing nonsense, 4 in-ceiling speakers) and watch 4k content from a Blu-ray.
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  #33  
07-16-2022, 06:02 AM
lollo2 lollo2 is offline
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Some around here need to put things into perspective. When I want the highest quality, I place my ass in-front of my 85 inch 4k OLED TV with a dedicated Dolby Atmos 5.2.4 system (no soundbar, no up-firing nonsense, 4 in-ceiling speakers) and watch 4k content from a Blu-ray.
Or you just compare what you consider "good VHS captures" from your friend with real good VHS captures, from 80s and 90s. There are a lot around.

A channel on S-VHS / VHS capture and AviSynth restoration https://bit.ly/3mHWbkN
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  #34  
07-16-2022, 07:29 AM
Eric-Jan Eric-Jan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McCarthy View Post

He has no problem using Blackmagic and 17 million views are a testament in itself.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9W37qO4fnjQ
What i saw in his video, he has a device that very much looks like mine Panasonic DMR-ES35V which outputs a rocksteady VHS signal, which even BlackMagic Design capture devices have no problem with, which means a lot, because that's the difference between crappy and picky, which some people mix up, so my guess is, luck is more of an important item with capturing

And…. there's nothing wrong with BlackMagicDesign equipment.
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  #35  
07-16-2022, 09:06 AM
hodgey hodgey is offline
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Yeah, north american ES45/46 seems to be same as north american ES35 + SD card slot and HDMI out judging by the manual. So, essentially a mid 2000s panasonic VHS hi-fi deck + a dmr-es15/16. So output from that (other than maybe one of the composite outputs) will already have gone via dvd-recorder stabilisation as if hooking a vcr to a ES15 and will be stable for any device to capture.

If he had used one of the newer north american panasonic dvd-recorder/vcr combos it would probably have looked worse given that they changed the chipsets in those to some combo of LSI logic system chip + cheap video decoder IC like a TVP5150 which don't have the TBC-like features of the panasonic chips. Hence I'm a bit sceptical of blindly suggesting getting a vhs/dvd-recorder combo with HDMI out as not all are as nice as the early panasonic ones in this regard.

My Personal opinion/2 cents:

IMO Using a blackmagic device in this manner is totally fine, though maybe a bit overkill if the setup is pure used for vhs capture and one could go for something a bit more budget friendly than what he has if one doesn't use e.g SDI/HDMI capture for other stuff too. As long as the capture device/pc interface is of somewhat ok quality (i.e not a $10 chinese easycrap clone) and gives you lossless direct output (not deinterlaced and/or compressed or whatever), the quality difference between devices decoding a s-video signal from a tbc or dvd-recorder is going to be very small. The choice is as much up to what fits into one's existing setup, and that the drivers etc work fine, so if they already had SDI capture set up for something else that part is probs fine.

The hard job, and where the larger difference is is always gonna be for the quality of the output is the device that receives the messy/unstable output from the VCR and turns it into whatever you are ingesting, whether it's a TBC, dvd-recorder or something else, as it's not something that can be fixed later in the chain. Very few capture deal with that particular well on their own as we've discussed countless times. In this regard that youtuber is fine given the panasonic.

As for the VCR part itself, I think you can get a very good result with a newer mid-range non-SVHS deck provided you have something that can stabilize the output, at least for SP tapes LP and I assume SLP in NTSC land is more variable both due to slower tape speed, narrower track width making precise mechanics more crucial and extra filtering steps. I find the main thing is that many decks tend to overdo the primitive analog noise reduction and/or sharpening by default resulting in washed out details and excessive ringing/haloing. Annoyingly, newer vcrs often lack much options to adjust it, more so on the lower end though it varies, but also a few SVHS decks like the latest panasonic ones sigh. These days it's better to let digital tools do handle the brunt of that in post if possible.

As for the original topic:

I have read that the non-PRO Retrotink 2X had a tendency to lose sync on instability and as such didn't work all that well for VHS, but maybe the 2X PRO is different. Looks like it might have the same issue though when looking at the linked time in this video while on the 5x side there is no black frames. (Differences in contrast are not all that meaningful either way as long as they don't clip as that can be, and usually has to, be sorted in post.) In that clip the 5x looks maybe a tad less wiggly too, but it's hard to give a good judgement based on that clip due to scaling, deinterlacing , not knowing how it compares to a in-vcr tbc/es10 or similar etc.

I haven't seen any "torture testing" of either other than that it at least seemed to handle a vcr switching between playback and trick play without dropping like the 2x, and they don't look excessively wiggly like what you get from some capture cards either.

I am curious about the 5x still, like how it reacts to tape issues, copy protection, and what hardware it actually uses.

My Video gear overview/test/repair/stuff yt channel http://youtu.be/cEyfegqQ9TU
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  #36  
07-16-2022, 09:41 AM
Eric-Jan Eric-Jan is offline
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The use of HDMI directly from a consumer device like DVD recorder or such will not work for capture most of the time, a passthrough device would be a cheap one, (bad quality?) or a too expensive one, for that job,
component or s-video is always better, my good working setup is now Panasonic ES35V > BMD Analog to SDI > BMD Video Assist, or from the BMD Analog to SDI > BMD Micro Converter SDI to HDMI > BMD Hyperdeck Shuttle HD, so for capture there's no PC or MAC needed, and all aspect ratio's stay in tact, according NTSC or PAL is used, IRE needs to be set to the correct value with dipswitches or by software.
The retro tink is meant for gaming consoles, which give a stable video signal in the first place…
A BMD device is no overkill when you have to pay $1000 or more, for a "pro" TBC...

Last edited by Eric-Jan; 07-16-2022 at 09:56 AM.
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  #37  
07-16-2022, 11:56 AM
lollo2 lollo2 is offline
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Quote:
As long as the capture device/pc interface is of somewhat ok quality and gives you lossless direct output (not deinterlaced and/or compressed or whatever), the quality difference between devices decoding a s-video signal from a tbc or dvd-recorder is going to be very small.
I agree. The key part of a good capture is the "player": S-VHS VCR with lineTBC or S-VHS VCR with a DVD-R Recorder in passthrough mode, and eventually a frameTBC. A "simple" good quality capture card is then adequate to give good results.

A channel on S-VHS / VHS capture and AviSynth restoration https://bit.ly/3mHWbkN
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  #38  
07-16-2022, 02:57 PM
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lordsmurf lordsmurf is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by latreche34 View Post
We all got dreams but making the dream reality is the hurdle.
Quoted because it needs to be stated again.
Furthermore, lots of gimmicky fake items claim to do what is needed, but few to none ever do. So as a buyer (pro or consumer) you have to learn to research and vet carefully, and spot the BS. Some of us warn others of said BS.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ENunn View Post
I'd love to get my hands on a Tink-5x
to see how it handles VHS, especially when paired with a JVC with a line TBC.
I wouldn't be surprised if this was a frame TBC alternative.
Replacing a frame sync TBC isn't possible on a mere capture card. Why? Because those require multiple chips on a board, all to itself. There is not a single chip, never has been, and probably never will be, that can handle to this function. At best, capture cards could have line TBC, but none to date has surfaced. All use the Analog Devices chips, which had been shown to be weak. The inverse could be true, frame sync TBC with added capture cards -- because those are a mere 2-3 chips. SDI boxes sorta-kinda were like this, but also not.

Quote:
Originally Posted by McCarthy View Post
On a side note: every time I research something VHS capturing related on Google, I end up here. And almost every time the census is "what you are trying or doing is nonsense". First it was BlackMagic being not good enough, now I read the same here about RetroThink.
That's because this site has serious users, and we don't fall prey to fluffy marketing. I hate cliches, but "when the rubber meets the road", a great many devices fall short, often far short, of the claims and expectations. Gullible lemmings buy what is marketed to them, and they simply accept whatever quality is given from it, good or bad (usually bad, when it comes to analog video conversion). They don't know any better, they don't know what they don't know. This site teaches them what's what. This is a no-BS zone. Fluffy marketers need not apply.

Quote:
While some around here seem to hunt for the last few percent in image quality, .
Some, not most. Those are mostly Avisynth discussions, never hardware discussions. And there is big different between a small %, and removing major errors by adding or upgrading a device.

Quote:
Somebody I know and have talk to a few times on this topic has been capturing VHS tapes for years. Just a week ago or so one of his suggestions was dismissed around here as "idiots on YouTube". Reality is, that he was able to grow a channel to 100k subs, all around captures from the 80s and 90s. I don't see anybody around here having any comparable success.
Having a Youtube channel is your measure of success?
Youtube does have a lot of idiots -- the comments alone (on almost ANY video) should prove that. You can find some brilliant stuff there, but it does tend to get drown out by the peanut gallery.

Quote:
He has no problem using Blackmagic and 17 million views are a testament in itself.
That video has 3k views.
And that logic is flawed. I viewed the video. Does that mean I'm now a testimonial, regardless of if I agreed with what I saw?

Any upsize using HDMI, to HD, in hardware, is a mistake.
Upsize needs to be done in Avisynth, not Topaz (too many artifacts, too slow, overall crappy output and experience).

Quote:
Originally Posted by lollo2 View Post
I did not chek in detail, and the captures from your friend may be the best in the world, but just looking to the first 2 randomly chosen:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lvbrSjADEv4
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qIq3Xda9Qqc
I was not impressed. I can also be that the conditions of the tapes were not good, I don't know.
The large success of his video may be related to the content rather than on the quality of the captures/restoration.
He sometimes has no line TBC, which makes for ugly video. Mostly Betamax. He need to add ES10/15 for the Betamax. He has AG-1980 for VHS.

I think he also considers noise to be "aesthetics" of the era. Of course, that's false, the CRT corrected some of this, whereas line TBC must in the digital realm (and was ideal even in analog era). So he's maybe misremembering seeing these on CRTs? Or perhaps too young at the time?
For example: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Es193vBJCdQ

Source may indeed be an issue, nth gen.

Quote:
Originally Posted by McCarthy View Post
most tapes from the 80s and 90s have issues.
No. VHS itself inherently has flaws. But beyond that, little is era based. Offhand, early 80s large home camcorders are terrible. BASF tapes were good, now a problem. Cheap 90s tapes and cheap 90s VCRs are a problem. I have 70s tapes that are better than 80s-00s, but it has nothing to do with the era, purely about the quality of the Panasonic Japanese tape, and good deck at the time. You got what you paid for.

Quote:
Some around here need to put things into perspective. When I want the highest quality, I place my ass in-front of my 85 inch 4k OLED TV with a dedicated Dolby Atmos 5.2.4 system (no soundbar, no up-firing nonsense, 4 in-ceiling speakers) and watch 4k content from a Blu-ray.
That's not perspective. That's applying modern luxuries to the average of decades past. That often leads to revisionism. It's like some modern Twitter kiddie wanting to rant about my deceased grandfather using racial slurs in WWII letters. That's just how things existed at the time. It just has to be understood, sometimes handled (intro it, to provide perspective about how times have changed, what was considered normal then is not accepted now). Same with analog era VHS tapes, understand the issue, deal with them. And when converting analog formats/tapes to digital, you must compensate (using TBCs, etc) to recover the actual image/audio data as faithfully as possible. Noise is NOT data (timing wiggle, etc), that gets removed in a quality conversion, to reveal the true quality video/audio.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lollo2 View Post
Or you just compare what you consider "good VHS captures" from your friend with real good VHS captures, from 80s and 90s. There are a lot around.
Yep.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric-Jan View Post
What i saw in his video, he has a device that very much looks like mine Panasonic DMR-ES35V
Are you referring to his TBC? Then nope. Vastly different, leagues apart. A very pro item not comparable to a DVD recorder monkeying with the signal and quality before output.

Quote:
And…. there's nothing wrong with BlackMagicDesign equipment.
There is a distinct infamous well-known issue with BM cards (one that even Blackmagic acknowledged!), when used for analog ingest. Even with proper TBC'ing (frame and line), the cards can blackout, or even drop frames with reporting the drops/inserts/dupes. It's nasty, pervasive. Capture cards should never act this way. Even craptastic Easycaps don't do that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hodgey View Post
Hence I'm a bit sceptical of blindly suggesting getting a vhs/dvd-recorder combo with HDMI out as not all are as nice as the early panasonic ones in this regard.
Random suggestions give random quality.

Quote:
I am curious about the 5x still, like how it reacts to tape issues, copy protection, and what hardware it actually uses.
I don't expect anything better or different. Video game capturing has become a completely different animal than analog tape format capturing. I'm glad that niche has a device that works well for them, but it doesn't translate well (or at all) to capturing videotapes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric-Jan View Post
component or s-video is always better,
Component is never better. It is double processed from the native Y/C (s-video) of the signal. Furthermore, most decks offering this are combo decks, and combo decks almost always internally composite down the video first. This is very deck specific, and you must know the internal path before using or suggesting. Either that, or you don't care about getting random quality.

Quote:
The retro tink is meant for gaming consoles, which give a stable video signal in the first place…
A BMD device is no overkill when you have to pay $1000 or more, for a "pro" TBC...
- Correct, video game systems are more stable.
- There's nothing "pro" about time base correctors. It's just a tool for the task of converting video, where you don't want the video to look like complete garbage. Is a hammer or screwdriver a "pro" tool?
- With BM, it's not about price comparison vs. TBCs. It has useless HD features that you're paying for. In fact, the entire intention of the card is HD, the SD is an "also does" afterthought. There are better SD cards for this SD tasks, and those cost less.

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  #39  
07-16-2022, 08:54 PM
McCarthy McCarthy is offline
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I was talking about the 80s and 90s as a measure of time, not hardware. That recorders used to be better than the last models is nothing new. 30 to 40 year old recordings lose signal strength on the tape, period. Trying to argue about the last 5% of quality makes no sense when you already lost 20 to 30% from the data on the tape.

I just bought over 100 pre-recorded VHS tapes, they all have lost image quality due to age.

How Do Magnetic Tape and VHS Tapes Decay?
- Magnetic particles gradually lose their charge through remanence decay, which results in color shifts towards weaker hues and a loss of overall detail
- As the lubricant layer erodes, the binder becomes more prone to wear and tear, which directly affects the magnetic particles and causes loss of information
- The polymers in the binder absorb water even in a moderately humid setting, creating a sticky, unplayable mess known as sticky-shed syndrome
- Repeated rewinding and playback can cause the backing and substrate to stretch, thereby causing tracking errors and dramatically reduced playback quality
- Successive recordings and copying can causes progressive generation loss of information and sync signals

Smurf: please upload a few photos of your current setup including hardware from BM and Retrothink with a monitor displaying the image and capture issues you keep talking about.
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07-16-2022, 09:33 PM
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lordsmurf lordsmurf is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McCarthy View Post
That recorders used to be better than the last models is nothing new.
That was never true either. Again, age/era doesn't determine quality, Quality determines quality. While you had advancements such as HiFi, there were many older linear VCRs that outperformed HiFi units of the 80s, 90s, and 00s.

Quote:
30 to 40 year old recordings lose signal strength on the tape, period.
Signal strength? No.
Other age based progressive issues? Yes.

Quote:
Trying to argue about the last 5% of quality makes no sense when you already lost 20 to 30% from the data on the tape.
This is a nothingburger statement. You've not lost 20-30%, no idea why you think that. Such myths were long ago dismissed, having been FUD by various manufacturers and opposing industries. For example, scare tactics to get you to convert videos. Or scare tactics (by magnetic media companies) to not rely on optical media. Boogey, boogey, boogey!

Quote:
I just bought over 100 pre-recorded VHS tapes, they all have lost image quality due to age.
Explain how, explain why you think that. Details matter.

Quote:
How Do Magnetic Tape and VHS Tapes Decay?
- Magnetic particles gradually lose their charge through remanence decay, which results in color shifts towards weaker hues and a loss of overall detail
This is not true. Tape "fade" was long ago proven to be BS. VHS color data is not that finesse. It's not film, but modulated data on a magnetic carrier, which makes your statement impossible. Any magnetic shifts result in catastrophic image loss, not some slight shifts in tint. 99.999%++ of these myths are the direct result of equipment errors, such as caps in bad decks failing (an actual cause of image value shifts), or simply revisionism (false memories) regarding the original recordings.

Quote:
- As the lubricant layer erodes, the binder becomes more prone to wear and tear, which directly affects the magnetic particles and causes loss of information
- The polymers in the binder absorb water even in a moderately humid setting, creating a sticky, unplayable mess known as sticky-shed syndrome
Binder is issue, oxide shedding.

Quote:
- Repeated rewinding and playback can cause the backing and substrate to stretch, thereby causing tracking errors and dramatically reduced playback quality
Eh... less so. The inherent play in a VHS tape is far more a problem that any perceived/believed "stretch" issues. Repeated use of a tape generally results in several other more likely wears, stretch is virtually never one of those.

Quote:
- Successive recordings and copying can causes progressive generation loss of information and sync signals
Reusing a tape was never suggested, and nth gen copies of copies degrades signal (unless TBCs used, but that only last a few extra gens). This was known even by laymen in the 1980s, not a secret, not even technical.

Quote:
Smurf: please upload a few photos of your current setup including hardware from BM and Retrothink with a monitor displaying the image and capture issues you keep talking about.
The internet has plenty of samples of these issues already, more are not needed. This is long ago settled and known, the BM card issues for about a decade now.

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