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  #1  
08-03-2018, 08:10 PM
snoker snoker is offline
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Take it from me, a rookie. Hey, sometimes beginners have the best advice. Here's my quick story. I just recently got the bug to try some VHS to digital conversions, found this site, and wanted to try to do it right -- as right as I could afford, anyway. I have set up a PC as if it were 2001, complete with Windows XP and an ATI All In Wonder 8500. Got my hands on a Kramer FC-400, and a Mitsu HS-HD-2000U just arrived today. Still hoping to get a Panasonic AG-1980 but the nicely refurbished ones aren't cheap, so that's coming.

Anyway, I'd been running my "junker" VCR -- the one I had in my closet before I knew any better -- a Panasonic PV-V4523S, through the Kramer, and it was neat to see what the TBC could do. (I'll hold on to that VCR to use when all else fails). So I get the Mitsu hooked up and... all I can get out of it is black and white. I try everything. I switch its built in TBC on and off. I try all the tapes I can get my hands on. I read the manual. I try bypassing the Kramer... boom, color. That's weird. The simple Panasonic gets color through the Kramer. I read more about the ATI card and check all of its settings. I fiddle with the Kramer's AGC and 7.5 IRE switches. Same result. Man, this is all used gear. Maybe the Kramer or the Mitsu or both are bad. But this cheapo Panasonic is fine? Doesn't seem right. I search this site's forums for similar problems, but I can't really find a match.

I have now spent over three hours puzzling over this. Then it hits me. Why haven't I tried a different S-video cable? I don't know. It's worth a try. You guessed it. Everything is in beautiful NTSC (as beautiful as it gets) color now from the Mitsu through the Kramer. (When I was bypassing the Kramer, I was also bypassing the bad cable).

Every single one of us knows that we should rule out the simple things first. But for me, it was the last thing to occur to me... three hours later. Maybe it's human nature? Or ego? Whatever it is, don't make the same mistake I did. Time is valuable. For your amusement, here's a photo of the bad end of that cable. You don't have to be a genius to see the problem. (Needless to say, that cable is in the trash now.) And it's no wonder the color wasn't getting through!


--snoker


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  #2  
08-04-2018, 05:12 AM
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lordsmurf lordsmurf is offline
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I run into bad s-video cables every year. Every year.

The first time I came across a bad cable was probably 5-10 years into doing video, and I remember being confused, then pissed, then dejected, then confused again. Troubleshooting that first time was not fun.

Now I have a drawer of s-video cables, and any that give me grief are just tossed in the trash, no second chances.

In other words, you're not alone.

- Did my advice help you? Then become a Premium Member and support this site.
- For sale in the marketplace: TBCs, workflows, capture cards, VCRs
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  #3  
08-05-2018, 09:50 AM
snoker snoker is offline
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Thanks, lordsmurf. If nothing else, it helps to know that it happens to the best of 'em.

Random coincidence: Yesterday I turned on my XP machine and was greeted with "DISK BOOT FAILURE - INSERT SYSTEM DISK AND PRESS ENTER" I take the side off the case and take one look at that 18-year-old IDE ribbon cable... it looks brittle and old, and I have probably bent it around a bit too much. I swap that cable out, and it boots right up.

I checked the cable first. Lesson learned.
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  #4  
09-02-2018, 03:28 PM
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rocko rocko is offline
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I invested in some high quality S-video cables made by "Blue Jeans" company, after they were recommended here on DFAQ.
A small problem that popped up, was the pins or something on the cables didn't quite fit snug into my AV 8710 TBC. The weight of those cables made them hang slightly down at the TBC connection, so I tied them up to the wall using small bungess, so they fit into the TBC straight in, without drooping!
This fixed an occasional problem I was having with noise in the video signal.

Also funny you mentioned the Mitsubishi HS HD 2000U, I got lucky in 2010, and found a brand new one at a mom and pop TV store.
It works fine so far, only issue was, it tangled up and jammed one VHS tape, had to take it apart, remove tape and clean inside the unit, and after several tapes, no more jamming so far!
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  #5  
09-02-2018, 03:36 PM
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lordsmurf lordsmurf is offline
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Watch snug fits.
I felt ill, literally almost barfed, felt woozy, when I thought I damaged a TBC last month.
All because of a stupid s-video cable.
I threw the cable in the trash.

s-video cables screwing up input/outputs has harmed expensive gear more than once in the past.

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- For sale in the marketplace: TBCs, workflows, capture cards, VCRs
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  #6  
09-02-2018, 03:50 PM
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rocko rocko is offline
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Hello LS!
Do you mean cables fitting too tight and pulling or pushing on the circuit board connections inside the unit? Or also an S-video pin breaking off and getting stuck inside too!
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  #7  
09-02-2018, 03:53 PM
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lordsmurf lordsmurf is offline
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Yes.

- Did my advice help you? Then become a Premium Member and support this site.
- For sale in the marketplace: TBCs, workflows, capture cards, VCRs
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