new to S-VHS...simple questions

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Nathan A, Oct 28, 2001.

  1. Nathan A

    Nathan A Second Unit

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    My VCR puttered out, so it's time for a new one! I mainly used my VCR to record stuff and watch it again (occasionally I'd stick in a movie I've bought that I don't have on DVD). Since buying a new TV (Mits 55807) I've noticed that tapes (especially recorded) look absolutely terrible.
    Here are my questions-
    Do you need special blank tapes to take advantage of S-VHS recording, or will the blank tapes I've already bought work just the same?
    Will an S-VHS player improve picture quality (compared to a regular VCR) when playing movies that I've bought on VHS? Will recorded tapes be watchable on my set?
    and here's the big one- Any suggestions for one? I'm hoping to keep it around $150 or less, but if there's a big difference between a more expensive one I'd certainly consider.
    Thanks!
     
  2. PaulKH

    PaulKH Second Unit

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    > Do you need special blank tapes to take advantage of S-VHS recording
    Yes. S-VHS tapes are higher quality than VHS tapes. An S-VHS VCR can record on VHS tapes though, in a 'VHS' mode. The only reasons to do this is if you either a) only have a VHS tape handy, or b) you need to make a tape to give to someone else whom you know doesn't have an S-VHS VCR.
    > Will an S-VHS player improve picture quality when playing movies that I've bought on VHS? Will recorded tapes be watchable on my set?
    No to the first (garbage in, garbage out, sorry), and yes to the second if by 'watchable' you mean they work.
    > Any suggestions for one? I'm hoping to keep it around $150 or less, but if there's a big difference between a more expensive one I'd certainly consider.
    I'd be surprised if you can find an S-VHS VCR for $150 or less although it's been a while since I got mine. I have (coincidentally since you have a Mitsubishi TV) a Mitsubishi 7080 that's about 2 years old I think. Even S-VHS recordings don't come close to DVD quality, but they're a good bit better than VHS! Most important of course will be connecting any S-VHS VCR to your TV (or via your receiver) using S-Video connections and not the cheesy composite type.
    Hope that helps.
     
  3. Alf S

    Alf S Cinematographer

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    Hey Nathan,
    If you buy a S-VHS ET model VCR (JVC etc) you can get near perfect S-VHS quality on "regular" VHS tapes you record to.
    As for better picture quality with pre-recorded tapes...doubtful. Especially when watched on a big screen TV.
    As for what model... many folks like the cheaper JVC (3800??) I for one went and got a nice Philips version at Circuit City for about the price range your asking for, and it looks and works great.
    Hope this helps
    Alfer
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  4. Selden Ball

    Selden Ball Second Unit

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    There are reasons for getting one of the more expensive S-VHS VCR models. For example, JVC's 7xxx and 9xxx series ($300-$400) both include full-frame time-base-correctors which can make worn tapes much more watchable. The 3xxx, 4xxx and 5xxx models don't: the video signal timing comes directly from the tape. Both 7xxx and 9xxx produce understandable audio when fast forwarding, too. The 9xxx includes video echo-cancellation circuitry which can help with OTA stations and some CATV systems. (I use xxx because the exact model number changes every year.)
    In principle, an S-VHS VCR playing a VHS tape can improve the color and maybe the resolution slightly when compared with a standard VHS VCR. This is because the color and luminance signals are decoded separately and don't get recombined into composite video.
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    Selden
     
  5. Michael St. Clair

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    While the do not have TBC, the Toshiba W804 and W808 have amazing picture quality. Better than the JVCs in my opinion. Especially the W808 using DVNR.
    Search MySimon for prices.
     
  6. John Cain

    John Cain Second Unit

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    I have a SVHS question.
    Do 6 hr record mode on SVHS recordings look better than the 6 hr recordings look on standard VHS??
    I am recording football games, will the extended mode recordings on SVHS lok better than the slow mode (2hr mode) on regular VHS machines ???
    Thanks,
    -- John
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  7. Michael St. Clair

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    John,
    In my opinion, SHVS EP quality varies from model to model, but a good recorder will make SVHS EP recordings (on real SVHS tape) that look better than VHS SP recordings. Tape quality matters, the best is probably Fuji H471S; other good ones are Sony MQST and 3M Master Broadcast.
    Unlike many newsgroups, alt.video.vcr is useful for such discussion.
    [Edited last by Michael St. Clair on October 29, 2001 at 08:38 AM]
     
  8. RoyGBiv

    RoyGBiv Stunt Coordinator

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    I agree completely that you should always use S-VHS tapes for the best quality recordsings (S-VHS ET doesn't look nearly as good), and use a good quality tape.
    I happened to see an add for J & R in Sunday's New York Times which had the JVC 3800 S-VHS VCR for $119. This is last year's model, but certainly a great deal.
    SMK
     
  9. Nathan A

    Nathan A Second Unit

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    Thanks for all the help. I settled on the JVC 3800 for $138 shipped! Looking forward to another new toy...
     

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