Looking to replace old VCR -- specific needs

Discussion in 'Digital TV & Video Players & Recorders' started by Tomcat76, Mar 27, 2005.

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  1. Tomcat76

    Tomcat76
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    Hi. Thanks for this place; I've found it after a Yahoo search led me to this forum's archived pages.

    I couldn't find an answer browsing through the archive so I'll post a new message.

    I'm looking to replace my old AKAI VS-F497, which was purchased somewhere in the mid '90s, but am having trouble finding a decent one that fits my needs. Somewhere in 2003, I actually bought one but it wasn't good enough so I replaced it with another. That one wasn't good enough either so I replaced it again for a VCR of around $550. That one wasn't good enough either so I went back to the shop with both my old VCR and the new one. The shop keeper (I know these people very well which explains why they were so cool about it) said that he couldn't keep doing this, so I told him that I brought my old VCR to be repaired. With the remaining money (cost price of new VCR minus repair costs for old VCR), I'd buy other things from his shop. He agreed and I continued to use my old VCR since then.

    To cut a long story short... I can't keep repairing this VCR so I would like a new one.

    New features I'm looking for:
    - recording in S-VHS format
    - HIFI stereo
    - multi-system recording (PAL/SECAM/NTSC)

    Features from my old VCR that I can't live without:
    - jog/shuttle on remote
    - "heavy" remote
    - everything should be possible from remote
    - "One Touch Recording"
    - recording starts IMMEDIATELY after pressing button
    - start recording on precise position
    - ultra-fast channel switching
    - multi-system playback
    - tape position indicator in HH:MM:SS

    Optional features:
    - high-speed rewind
    - record volume control
    - 16:9 resolution recording and playback

    You know... when I see this list of features I can't help but think of what the shop keeper told me two years ago when he returned my VCR after repairing. He said that, back when I bought my old VCR, it was considered "semi-professional" but now it's "professional"...

    Any hints, guidelines or tips are highly appreciated. Thanks in advance.


    Thomas
     
  2. MartinImber

    MartinImber
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    I think you will find that we don't deal with VCRs much now, the only one I'd even consider is the full size Sony DV VCR.

    DVD Recording and PVRs have replaced VCRs

    The only use for them is handling DV material
     
  3. Tomcat76

    Tomcat76
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    Well, I still need something to play back my huge stack of VHS tapes. I'm in the process of copying the stuff I want to keep onto my PC but it takes a while and the VCR's head won't live forever either (not to mention the "motor mechanism" (?) which seems to be on the way out again).

    But it could be interesting to know if there are any PVRs with the features I'm after (minus the one for handling S-VHS tapes, of course). If there is one, I'll just get the AKAI VS-J4600 to continue transfering my old tapes onto my computer, and, when that's done, give it to the family.

    Edit:
    I'm not so fond of MPEG2, though, if that's what PVRs use. If they record digitally I'd prefer some uncompressed format or MPEG4 at the most. Also, it needs to have a regular scart or composite out so that I can record onto PC in standard PAL 4:3 format, not some DV format which makes the picture look compressed in the width. I know this is standard for DVD recording but I'm not into that; I mainly record for playback on the PC (in AVI format) or for use on web sites (in MPEG1 format) so I need the correct dimensions.
     
  4. MartinImber

    MartinImber
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    A few points

    Digital PVRs (of which there are a few) do lossless recording by recording the bitstream.

    For playback just look for a half decent deck from Comet or Curries (sorry to recommend but VCRs are not sold in high end AV shops).

    For transfer of tape I find I can do 3 - 4 hours a day quite easily by MPEGing overnight.

    As to VCR life well I am in the position of when mine goes - I am totally stuffed! (last VTCM40 I saw sold fetched £400)
     
  5. Tomcat76

    Tomcat76
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    Just to be sure: you're not saying that I'd need two devices; one for recording and one for playback... right?

    Anyway, I hope that someone can tell me if I can use any PVR in the same way I've been using my VCR. The fast response time (recording, pausing and switching channels) is of primary importance.

    BTW: I live in Belgium. I don't know why it's not displayed below my username.

    I wish I could do that but the chance of getting frame drops is just too big so I have to keep an eye on the capturing and only make fragments of roughly 22 minutes at the most (the latter is because of a problem with Pinnacle Studio screwing up replaying captured video after 23/24 minutes; pasting the parts together and editing them strangely doesn't seem to be a problem at all).
     
  6. Tomcat76

    Tomcat76
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    OK... I've read up a bit on PVRs and it seems that the hard drive would be a limitating factor for me in terms of storage space. Are there any solutions that can work with (preferably inexpensive) removable disks which can be plugged into a computer (not via USB)?
     
  7. MartinImber

    MartinImber
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    Sorry didn't know about Belgium

    Capturing - mine seems to run quite well when I use my video camera as a analogue-digital converter
     

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