AGH- video noise on DVD recorder input!

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Jesse Skeen, Jul 17, 2003.

  1. Jesse Skeen

    Jesse Skeen Producer

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    I just got a Philips DVR-985 recorder, and there seems to be intermittent problems with the inputs on it. My laserdisc player, going through the S-Video jacks, has a horizontally rolling 'ghost' image in the background- when the picture is dark you can see a dark vertical line moving from left to right across the screen, it appear to be the 'ghost' of the line hidden to the sides of the picture. I've noticed this on a VHS tape running through the DVD recorder also, and it also shows up on the final disc recording. It does this even if I don't plug in any other sources and I don't even have the TV tuner hooked up.
    Has anyone else had this problem? I'm going to try calling Philips' 800 number tonight and see if they can help me, but wonder if anyone here knows what the problem is. I hate these types of problems the most because there's usually something very simple behind them but they take forever to figure out! [​IMG]
    It's been having trouble keeping the right contrast level (going from normal to ridiculously bright) on an old Beta tape I have too and I've read that's a common problem with this machine. I'll have to try an external dubbing enhancer to see if that'll fix that problem (it's not a commercially-made tape so it's not copy protection.)
     
  2. Tony Kwong

    Tony Kwong Supporting Actor

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    Have you tried basic cable swaps? And that they are all seated properly?
     
  3. Jesse Skeen

    Jesse Skeen Producer

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    Yes, they all seem seated properly- I plugged my Playstation 2 into the same S-Video input as I used the LD player and its black startup screen looked OK though. Hooking the same cable from the LD player to the TV is fine too.
    Here's another weird thing though- the recorder has 2 S-video inputs (1 on front, 1 on back) and the back jack has the bigger problem. Also, when you plug other jacks into the regular video input on the back, that affects the visibility of the moving line, though it doesn't disappear completely.
    BTW does anyone have an opinion on S-video versus regular video for recording on DVD (whether one's better than the other, or no difference?)
     
  4. Jesse Skeen

    Jesse Skeen Producer

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    Well, it turns out the problem is caused by the cables I was using- I went and bought some expensive Monster cables and the problem went away. I've never been a believer in "high-performance" cables as with normal use they tend to produce the same results, but I guess with DVD recorders it does make a difference.
    However, I would like to say that Philips' customer service completely SUCKS- this is the sort of thing that they ought to know about. Considering the manual says "STOP- Don't take this back to the store, call our 800 number!", you'd expect to get people who know how these things work, but that clearly isn't the case. When I called their customer service number the guy said it was probably a firmware problem and he'd be sending me an upgrade disc. I told him I'd already installed the firmware that was on their website and he said "Oh no, this is brand-new firmware that's better than anything they have on the site right now!" After receiving the disc, guess what? It turned out to be the SAME firmware after all. I called them back and they said I'd have to ship it (through the mail) to their service center in San Jose, unless I could take a day off from work and take it down there myself. There was absolutely no other info they could give me, other than suggesting I send it in. I took the player back to the store and exchanged it for another of the same model, and the problem was still there, so that was when I decided to try some better cables and see if that made any difference.
    Their customer service people should have been told that the type of cables used does cause problems on the inputs, so if anyone else calls them with the same problem they can be advised to try some better cables rather than sending the player to their repair center! I have a job answering phone calls, and if I knew as little about the products as these people do I'd be fired!
     
  5. Tony Kwong

    Tony Kwong Supporting Actor

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    I KNEW IT!![​IMG]
     

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