#1  
02-05-2023, 02:48 AM
aminadav aminadav is offline
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Hello fellow history enthusiasts! I am reaching out for some advice and guidance on purchasing a new VCR to play my collection of important historical video cassettes from the 1990-1995 era. As we all know, preserving and archiving historical artifacts is crucial in maintaining the accurate depiction of our past and the events that shaped our world.

The problem I am facing is that my current VCR is supported SVHS as I need but it is not of good quality and does not include a Time Base Corrector (TBC).

With that in mind, I am looking for the best available VCR currently on the market that I can buy. I understand that technology has advanced significantly since the 90s, and these types of products may not be as readily available as they once were. However, I am hoping to find a solution that will allow me to properly preserve and archive my collection for future generations to enjoy.

I would greatly appreciate any recommendations or suggestions from anyone who may have experience with this issue. Thank you in advance for your help and support in preserving our important historical legacy!
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  #2  
11-24-2023, 12:53 PM
Idocinthebox Idocinthebox is offline
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I would look for a Mitsubishi HS-HD2000U DVHS High-Definition Digital VCR Video Cassette Recorder. I does SVHS and VHS. The unit also has a TBC. This unit is better than the JVC prosumer units. I have seen them on EBAY. I have one that I use to digitize all of my VHS tapes.
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  #3  
11-24-2023, 01:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Idocinthebox View Post
I would look for a Mitsubishi HS-HD2000U DVHS High-Definition Digital VCR Video Cassette Recorder. I does SVHS and VHS. The unit also has a TBC. This unit is better than the JVC prosumer units. I have seen them on EBAY. I have one that I use to digitize all of my VHS tapes.
Those decks have very common audio issues.

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  #4  
11-24-2023, 01:28 PM
latreche34 latreche34 is offline
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No one knows what's available in your location market, The only way is search and ask sellers, There is no such "best VCR", every VCR has its own pros and cons and you wouldn't know until you put your tapes in it, because it's based on tape problems. Good prerecorded SP tapes should work fine no matter what VCR.

The advice here was, is, and will always be a S-VHS VCR with S-Video out and built in line TBC, must be in good working condition but that can interpret to different things based on the seller, from fully restored to it turns on, However be prepared to do minor refurbishing on your own, if not, have it sent to someone who have the knowledge and tools.

https://www.youtube.com/@Capturing-Memories/videos
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  #5  
11-25-2023, 06:57 AM
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Originally Posted by latreche34 View Post
There is no such "best VCR", every VCR has its own pros and cons
Well, don't say that, because you falsely create that idea that any VCR can be fine, which is completely false. There is definitely a group of "recommended VCRs", and a much larger groupd of "not recommended VCRs" (ie, lots of low-end crap).

Now then, when selecting the exact unit, from the list of recommended VCRs, is where "there is no best" comes into play. You choose the recommended model based on source needs. Not petty preferences, or the cheapest price -- source needs, the tape needs.

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and you wouldn't know until you put your tapes in it, because it's based on tape problems.
Nah. Give me enough info, and I can select the best deck for you 90%+ of the time. I've been doing this for 30+ years now, I've gotten pretty good at it over the years.

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Good prerecorded SP tapes should work fine no matter what VCR.
Sadly, not true anymore. Condition matters, and 75%+ of all decks are now shot. Most of them were mishandled by goons, the rest were used into the ground.

Quote:
The advice here was, is, and will always be a S-VHS VCR with S-Video out and built in line TBC, must be in good working condition but that can interpret to different things based on the seller, from fully restored to it turns on, However be prepared to do minor refurbishing on your own, if not, have it sent to someone who have the knowledge and tools.
Never, never, never trust eBay sellers.

Because quality VCRs are getting harder to locate, a couple months ago, I decided to play the eBay lottery, hoping to find refurb candidates. What a nightmare that was, and a total waste of probably at least 40 hours (yep, a whole work week of time pissed away). Out of 10 decks, 8 arrived as garbage. All "tested" and "working", of course! The final 2 are not great, with 1 being a deep refurb for later (frankenstein parts work), and the other getting my B+ grade after working on it.

eBay = play stupid games, win stupid prizes.

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  #6  
11-25-2023, 11:50 AM
latreche34 latreche34 is offline
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I'm not putting any false information, The best VCR is a S-VHS VCR with line TBC regardless brand if it's in good working order and because there is a handful with those requirement the choice is very limited, If you know VCR's out of this category that are better please list them.

Most JVC VCRs have linear audio problems, Some Panasonic have video board problems due to failed components, D-VHS decks have problems with certain LP types, SECAM by design cannot benefit from line TBC regardless the VCR, Low speed tapes can suffer from TBC being ON, the list goes on, and threads of these problems have been documented already here and everywhere.

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Sadly, not true anymore. Condition matters, and 75%+ of all decks are now shot. Most of them were mishandled by goons, the rest were used into the ground.
I literally put the condition as good at the first of the sentence and previously said good working VCR, what the hell are you quoting me wrong for?

https://www.youtube.com/@Capturing-Memories/videos
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  #7  
11-25-2023, 01:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by latreche34 View Post
I literally put the condition as good at the first of the sentence and previously said good working VCR, what the hell are you quoting me wrong for?
Sometimes I quote simply to expand the discussion, not in reply to anybody in particular. And that was the case here. Didn't intend to confuse.

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I'm not putting any false information
No, nothing you said is false. But sometimes newbies get the wrong takeaway, they don't understand, they read what you write wrong, ie their false impression. Not you, but them. Sometimes I try to clarify something before novices read it wrong.

As in "Oh, any VCR is fine, good to know, thanks!" ... and then they toddle off to use a POS, blissfully unaware until issues come up later.

Did that clarify it?

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  #8  
11-25-2023, 02:56 PM
latreche34 latreche34 is offline
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In that regard, Yes. a lot of members gloss over posts and they don't get the correct information to sink in until several tries made.

https://www.youtube.com/@Capturing-Memories/videos
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  #9  
11-25-2023, 09:17 PM
Idocinthebox Idocinthebox is offline
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The Misubishi Deck is probably the most reliable, audio issues occur with the JVC as well. There are are ways to enhance and clean up the audio now so it is less of a problem. Lord Smurf has a lot of experience with all the decks, software ect. read everything he posts. There are a lot of ways to get to your goal. You may find ways that no one has so post your results in the forum. I use Windows 11 a Diamond USB adapter and Davinci Resolve as well as Topaz Video AI. Lord Smurf does not like that approach but it works for me. He uses Windows XP and ATI USB adapter and mostly JVC decks. I am sure he will comment more, I always learn something from his posts though.
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  #10  
11-27-2023, 11:26 PM
Haunted_TBC Haunted_TBC is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by latreche34 View Post
There is no such "best VCR"
My understanding is that, at least for VHS-C tapes (and given the tape is played correctly by the deck), itís the AG-1980 full stop.
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  #11  
11-28-2023, 05:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Haunted_TBC View Post
My understanding is that, at least for VHS-C tapes (and given the tape is played correctly by the deck), it’s the AG-1980 full stop.
Unfortunately, other aspects of that deck is a reason to also avoid it.

It's a total money pit now, and only the most serious of hobbyists and professionals should own one. The AG-1980 does not comport to the idea of "buy it, use it, resell it" as it may fail during usage. And sadly, that even applies to so-called "refurbished" decks, as those were not 100% refurb'd as needed. (Deter is the only persopn who does this to my knowledge, and it has costs. Plus he may turn down decks, no guarantee on some units, too far gone, or production version apparently not reparable.)

Certain EOL JVC decks are equally as good as the AG-1980 at -C, arguably even better at it.

The real advantage of the 1980 is the EP performance, but even that's no longer quite as true as it once was. But it does take some ability to manually realign as needed. Even the AG units have aged so much that realign can be required now.

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  #12  
11-28-2023, 08:33 AM
aramkolt aramkolt is offline
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AG1980 from my experience is a bit different. If it's appropriately re-lubricated and the loading motor coupler is replaced along with the standard recappings (TBC board, front display board at a minimum), I don't see why it would fail during use. The original caps on most of those boards lasted a good 10+ years, so I'd expect a similar life out of these without having to recap again - especially if you completely unplug the VCR when not in use (certain sections remain powered on in standby mode that do get quite warm, especially the display board). The absolute worst original lubrication area is the pinch roller which invariably has the original lubricant turn to cement over time and that probably is what leads to a lot of the motor coupling failures as well. Luckily, it's easy to check if your pinch roller is freed up without needing to disassemble anything other than the top cover - my ebay listing here for some replacement couplers has a short video showing what that you should easily be able to "wiggle" the pinch roller around the post it sits on if it's properly lubricated: https://www.ebay.com/itm/276155981871 Even if that does need to be re-lubricated, it's pretty easy without fancy tools and one drop of a synthetic oil or grease after cleaning off the old lubricant.
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