Wondering if anyone has any experience of these machines.
My HS950 has become very tired and is going to need a costly overhaul to get it back in shape.
I have a once off/last of encoding exercise to perform on about 70hrs of SVHS tape - some of it generated through 1/2 size heads on C cassettes - so timebase correction is vital.
I am in New Zealand, so available range of decent second hand machines is a bit limited compared to the drooling options on ebay and the like. Someone local is advertising an AG7500 and AG7510. I do understand that these models are very old (late eighties I think) - but am willing to be surprised that despite this they are still usable if in good condition....or NOT!!
I believe that timebase correction was an option (add on card) for the AG7500, but not sure about the AG7510. Assuming that either are so equipped and are somewhere close to original specs: Would they still be up to the exercise?
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Thread: Panasonic ag7500/ag7510
These VCRs are older than Moses, and typically just as creaky. Worn heads are a common issue, and they usually need some hard-to-find part replaced. The 7510 was a feeder/player which doesn't usually have the TBC option installed, and even with the TBC neither would be a good choice for your VHC-C tapes (due to head gap mismatch). I would take any random consumer VCR model over one of these ancient behemoths at this point: they were never intended for use outside a studio with the resources ($$$) to have them serviced regularly. Most of these huge AGs (or similar JVC BRs) you see for sale today have not even been plugged into mains power since 1995: they are arthritic from disuse and neglect.
If you feel you need the TBC, be patient and try to find one of the (consumer) JVC DigiPure SVHS models or look for a Panasonic NV-FS200. The 200 is widely considered the best PAL-format VCR for playback into digital encoders.
Many thanks for the reply Orsetto.
Exactly what I was expecting to hear really. My chance of finding a decent FS200 or similar in plug and go condition in the back end of the world is probably approaching infinity, so I guess my best option is going to be to try and revive the HS950. There has to be a nice sparkling new head sitting on a forgotten shelf somewhere in the world, and I would hope to find enough bits to patch up the K deck.
I have actually encoded all the video through a Canopus from the duff machine, but it is so infuriatingly noisy that I would like to redo the whole lot. My tapes are all virgin masters on good quality tape so, time degradation aside, I know there is still a decent signal locked up in there somewhere. I used to work in a semi-pro store once upon a time and had access to all the nice toys; I have some material that was recorded through a decent camera directly to a brand new FS200, and even that has come out below desired level. So frustrating!
If all else fails I may have resort to cleaning (I think I will try the Neatvideo plugin with Premiere), but unfortunately I recorded all with 3DNR enabled so I have even less resolution to work with. My really old material recorded to one of them portable National VHS recorders with a saticon tube camera is the cleanest of the lot. You just cant win!