VCR as "Tuner"

Discussion in 'Beginners, General Questions' started by Freddy_D, Sep 16, 2003.

  1. Freddy_D

    Freddy_D Auditioning

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    Hello All:

    After a long abscence from the forum (but NOT from my 8 foot wide screen [​IMG] I'm back with a question...

    I have a S-VHS VCR tht I would like to use as a simple tuner for my local networks (It's great to be in the NY Metro market [​IMG]

    My question is: How do I accomplish this task? Weather I attach an antenna to the "In" jack on the VCR or not, all I get is a flat blue field... No matter what channel I tune to. What am I doing wrong?

    Thanks in Advance,
    Fred
     
  2. ChuckSolo

    ChuckSolo Screenwriter

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    Usually the VCR has to be "told" what kind of service it is receiving, i.e., over the air channels, cable, etc. This is usually done in the setup menu of the VCR. Also, the TV has to be tuned to either a direct video connection, i.e., Video1, Video2, etc., if the VCR is connected to the video "in" ports of the TV or tuned to the channel that the VCR is broadcasting to. This would apply if the VCR is connected to the RF antenna "in" on the TV. These channels are usually either VHF channels 3 or 4. Normally a switch on the back of the VCR will allow you to set which channel the VCR will broadcast to. The most common channel is VHF channel 3. Remember that the cable connection coming in from the wall has to connect into the RF antenna "IN" on the VCR and the RF antenna "out" on the VCR goes to the RF "in" on the TV. This has to be regardless of whether you use the "video" ports on your TV or not.
     
  3. ChrisWiggles

    ChrisWiggles Producer

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    I find that channels that dont come in (via cable) will turn blue. Channels that dont exist, or scrambled channels it will just leave blue. Scrambled channels sometimes have a decently enough normal signal that it pops in and out of blue. Perhaps if signals are weak (lots of fuzz and the like) it's just leaving it blue like that. Just a thought.
     
  4. PienSavaca

    PienSavaca Stunt Coordinator

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    Vcr and tv makers thought they were doing us a favor by replacing loud static channels with a calm blue screen with no sound. Unfortunately, that makes it hard to acquire a signal via analog antenna, since you will not see a picture until it is strong enough.

    There may be an option of turning the blue screen off, to see the static; or use an alternate method--a tv or vcr that does not invoke the blue screen.
     
  5. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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    Freddy,

    Chuck’s info for accomplishing this were pretty good, considering you didn’t really give us much details on your system, so hopefully you can pull off what you’re trying to accomplish. If not here are a few more things to keep in mind.

    First, since you noted you have an 8-ft. screen, I’m assuming you don’t have a regular TV, but a projection device, which is why you need a separate tuner. Yes, the VCR can be used for this – I do it in my own system. As Chuck noted, the antenna cable must be connected directly to the VCR’s “antenna in” RF jack.

    Since the VCR is only a tuner, it must be connected to the system like any other audio/video component (i.e., DVD player, mini-dish receiver). That is, the VCR’s RCA jacks for audio must be connected to the 5.1 receiver, and I assume a video connection as well. The trick with the video connection is that it probably has to be the same as used elsewhere in your system.

    Since you have an S-VHS player, your video delivery options are composite (yellow RCA jack) or S-video (S-connector). If everything else in your system is connected using say, component video (red, blue green RCA jacks) that may be why you’re getting the blue screen. If this is the case, you may have to connect the VCR directly to the projector via another input.

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  6. Greg*go

    Greg*go Supporting Actor

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    To add to what Wayne said, if you only have the VCR connected with the S-video, check to see if you need to use the composite video cable for the TV tuner. The VCR might only be able to output a VHS tape through the S-video. Does the VCR work when you're trying to watch a movie with it?
     
  7. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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    S-VHS VCRs output video through both the composite and S-jacks at all times.

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     

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