Need alot of help hooking up TV/DVD/RECEIVER/VCR ... total newbie here

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Adam-D, Jun 2, 2002.

  1. Adam-D

    Adam-D Auditioning

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    Hello,

    I desperatly need help setting up my system. For some reason i'm very confused. The thing that is confusing me is that my TV is fairly old and it only had a cable outlet on it, it doesn't have the video/audio out things (the red/white/yellow). I have a VCR, DVD and Audio Receiver (SAD-X750). They are all very new and they all have the proper outs and ins. Could someone please tell me how im supposed to hook them all together? SInce my TV can't go directely to my receiver, I hooked it up to my VCR. Then what do I do? Do I just hook my VCR to my receiver, and my DVD player to my receiver? Or do I hook my receiver and dvd player to my VCR? Sorry, I know i'm a total newbie, but i'm also a very frustered newbie and any help would be greatly appreciated. I have 5 speakers and a subwoofer too, so i'm going to be hooking up surround sound, and I would like all my stuff (tv/vcr/dvd) to have surround sound too, and preferably i'd like to beable to control all my stuff through my receiver. If anyone can help me please post here. Sorry if I havent been descriptive enough, if you need more information ask me.

    Thanks tons,
    Adam-D
     
  2. Mark Larson

    Mark Larson Supporting Actor

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    See, the long and the short of it is that you can't hook up your TV to your DVD optimally. The sound won't be a problem, but the video will - you'll have to (probably) get a device to convert the signal from the composite (yellow RCA/phono plug) to RF (antenna). If you connect it through your VCR, it is likely you'll get Macrovision (disturbance in the picture). You can try it, however.
    What size TV is it? This might be an "opportnuity to upgrade"... [​IMG]
     
  3. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    how important is it to you to have your dvd player working right away. if it's a high-priority you're defintely stuck. without your tv having input capability, you're only option is to try to run the video (for your dvd) through the vcr, but like mark said, you may run into macrovision problems.

    i wonder if rat-shack (or anyone else) sells some sort of coax to line-level converter...heck...even if they did i bet the picture quality would suffer too much to make it worthwhile.

    i would definitely look into a new tv - you can get some decent ones at relatively low prices. for suggestions, i recommend you do a search in the tv forum or post a thread there asking for recommendations at a specific price-point or screen size.

    if you're okay on holding off on the dvd player, then you can (at least) get your vcr hooked up to the tv, then run the sound from the vcr to the tv. that'll give you pro-logic decoding for your basic tv/vcr viewing.
     
  4. Eric Walsh

    Eric Walsh Stunt Coordinator

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    If I understand what you are asking I think I had the same problem as you. I had an old T.V. that only had a cable in. I couldn't play my DVD player through my VCR because of the problems already stated above so I went to Radio Shack and bought an RF modulator for around 30 dollars. What this thing does is allow you to connect the yellow video out cord from your DVD player into it and then connect your regular cable wire from the modulator into the T.V.. This should solve your video problem, however I am sure there is a loss of quality of picture from doing this but you just have to decide if the loss in picture is enough to justify a new T.V. purchase.

    -Eric
     
  5. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

    Moderator

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    Adam,
    First, welcome to the Forum!
    What I like to stress to “Newbies” is “keep it simple.” The simplest thing is to run all audio and video signals to the receiver, and only one video feed to the TV. This way a single selection from the remote gets you both sound and picture.
    There are three types of connections in a home theater – audio, video and RF (aka “radio frequency” or “antenna” signals). I’ll take them for you one at a time.
    Video comes in three varieties these days:
    • Composite, which uses the yellow RCA jack you find on most components.
    • S-video, which uses a specific connector different from other video connections.
    • Component video, which uses three RCA cables and jacks, typically red, blue and green in color.
    The thing to remember about video is that none of these formats are compatible with each other. You cannot “mix and match” them if you are sending all video signals to the receiver. For instance, if you connect the DVD player and satellite tuner to the receiver with S-video, and then connect composite video from the receiver to the TV, you will get no video to the TV. To “keep it simple” you will have to use the format that is common to all your equipment. Typically this means either S-video, or more commonly, regular composite video (i.e., the yellow RCA jacks).
    Audio signals come in two subcategories, analog and digital. Analog audio is easy – just connect the red and white jacks from the various components to the red and white jacks on the receiver. This is all you need to do with a CD player and a VCR. Typically the white jacks designate the left signal, and red designates the right audio signal.
    However, 5.1 Dolby Digital audio from the DVD player is a little trickier. To make things needlessly complicated, there are two types of digital connections: (fiber) optical and coaxial. The coaxial connection is yet another RCA jack, typically orange in color. Whichever you chose, coaxial or fiber optic, you have to have the same connections on both the DVD player and the receiver.
    On the receiver you may have noticed that the inputs for audio and video are logically labeled – “VCR,” “CD,” “Satellite,” etc. You may have noticed the digital inputs are not: “Digital 1,” “Digital 2,” and so forth. So which one do you plug the DVD player into? Any one of them, actually. The trick is that you have to go into the receiver’s menu and tell it which digital input the DVD player is connected to. You will have to consult the receiver’s manual for this.
    Further complicating matters, you will have to tell the DVD player to send a 5.1 digital signal to the receiver. You will have to do this from the DVD player’s menu. Again, you will have to find directions for this step the DVD player’s manual.
    RF (radio frequency) signals are the third kind you will deal with in a home theater. Again, RF signals come from a variety of sources like a TV antenna, feeds from the local cable company and/or satellite antennas. The RF signals from the antennas go to the appropriate tuner: TV, VCR, cable box, and satellite receiver.
    There are two types of coaxial cables commonly for used home-theater-related RF signals, RG-59 and RG-6. RG-59 is suitable only for a TV antenna. It should not be used with cable TV or satellite feeds. Cable and satellite feeds require RG-6 exclusively. However, you can use RG-6 with TV antennas, so you can “keep it simple” by using RG-6 for all your home theater RF connections.
    Logically interfacing equipment with RF feeds into the system can be complicated. The “keep it simple” method, in my opinion, is not run any RF signals to the TV. The TV, cable, and satellite feeds go to their appropriate tuners only. The tuners connect to the receiver via the audio and video RCA jacks, and the receiver’s “[Video] Monitor Out” delivers the picture to the television via the TV’s video “Line In” jack. (In your case you would send the receiver’s “[Video] Monitor Out” to the RF converter that Eric recommended.)
    Many satellite and cable boxes these days have digital audio feeds. With these follow the directions given for DVD players, above.
    Hope this gets you going, Adam. If you have any more questions I’m sure we can help you.
    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  6. Allan Jayne

    Allan Jayne Cinematographer

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    Here is one good way:
    (assuming your audio receiver also has video jacks)
    Connect DVD player to receiver using red/white/yellow (RCA jack) connectors. (Use optical audio instead if player and receiver have the appropriate connectors but try the red/white audio at first to get an idea of how things go together or if you are not familiar with the optical output)
    Connect VCR to receiver using red/white/yellow connectors.
    Connect yellow receiver video out (aka monitor out) to an RF modulator (the USD 30. Radio Shack model) sold separately.
    Connect RF modulator output (an antenna coax) to your TV.
    Now you have the fundamental layout that the big boys use, all the video signals controlled by the receiver and funneled into the TV and all the audio signals funneled into the receiver.
    Later when you upgrade to a TV with video inputs, you can remove the RF modulator and substitute better video signal paths (e.g. S-video).
    Video hints:
    http://members.aol.com/ajaynejr/video.htm
     
  7. Adam-D

    Adam-D Auditioning

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    WOW! I'm very impressed. I wanna thank all of you so much for the help. I got it all working and the system sounds great. All of the suggestions were great, but I want to especially thank Allan. That was the answer I was looking for. I'm not a wiz at this stuff, and I dont know what all this optical stuff is, but the picture looks great just from using the standard RCA yellow/white/red coords, so i'm happy [​IMG] Anyways, thanks everyone. Hopefully I will get better at this stuff, and maybe one day i'll get to pass my knowledge onto another newbie, like you've all just done for me.
    Thanks!
    Adam
     
  8. Allan Jayne

    Allan Jayne Cinematographer

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    Refinement to be able to record one channel and watch a different channel but when doing so you will be restricted to the TV speakers for sound:

    Get an antenna A/B switch aka TV/Game switch.

    Connect the VCR antenna output to the A/TV leg of the switch.

    Reconnect the RF modulator output to the B/Game leg of the switch.

    Connect the Output/Common leg of the switch to the antenna input of the TV.

    Remember to (on the VCR) set the TV/VCR setting to TV during the times you are recording something and watching something else.

    This connection is also used in advanced home theater setups. When you upgrade to a newer TV, you can leave the VCR antenna output connected to the antenna input of the TV.
     

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