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  1. Member Leighgion's Avatar
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    Hi folks, extensive reader first-time poster here.

    Have a question, as the subject line says, about priority of hardware in the capture chain. At this time, my lineup in order is:

    JVC HR-S3901U VCR
    Datavideo TBC-1000
    Aurora IgniterX

    As you can see, it's a short chain. I was about ready to bite the bullet and add a Sign Video proc amp, but after some further reading I'm wondering if it another valid choice is to upgrade that VCR. My experience with the S3901 has been smooth enough and I definitely have seen a quality improvement with its s-video output vs my old composite output VCR's, but it lacks any of the snazzy digipure features the nicer models like the HR-S9800, 9911 and the like discussed in these forums have.

    I've got a few well-aged (and probably rather "well-loved") tapes I need to convert, so now's the time to enhance the chain. In theory, I might be able to afford both upgrades, but it'd be a budget strain, so I figured I'd ask for the experienced advice of you folks.

    Is the proc amp foremost, or should the VCR get first consideration?
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  2. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    I would do the VCR upgrade first.
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    I agree, a VCR would definitely be a smart decision. There are several older posts w/ screen caps comparing differnt VCRs...the difference that a highly-rated prosumer VCR makes is pretty obvious.
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  4. Preservationist davideck's Avatar
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    IMHO, the shorter the chain, the better.

    Do you need to adjust any proc amp parameters? If so, a new VCR won't help you there.

    The DataVideo TBC is likely providing some improvement in picture quality.
    (Color regions are a bit more uniform, and less jitter on luminance edges.)

    You seem satisfied with the 3901; what are you hoping that a 9000 will do for you?
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  5. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    Standalone TBCs are not made to "clean" a picture. They are there to cleanse the signal.

    The TBC/DNR system inside the VCR is meant to "clean" the image. It does not provide much in terms of signal cleansing.

    Cleaning the image and cleaning the signal are separate concepts, although they are closely related and do tend to have a degree of overlap. This is often why people have BOTH a VCR with a TBC and a full-frame TBC in the chain of hardware, to get both services.

    Again, the VCR upgrade.

    A Proc amp is for color correction, so if you need one, you'll need one. It's a seperate kind of device altogether. If you need a better image quality, and color correction, you'll need both the VCR and the proc amp.

    If you cannot afford both right now, and do need them both, save your tapes for now, do them later. Buy the VCR, and move on to other projects until you can also get the proc amp. I've saved aside tapes, sometimes for years, so I could acquire the hardware I needed, or waited for software to be further developed.
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  6. Preservationist davideck's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by lordsmurf
    Standalone TBCs are not made to "clean" a picture. They are there to cleanse the signal.
    Any timebase corrector (stand alone or otherwise) will attempt to remove the "timebase" instability of a video signal as much as possible and reinsert a "clean" synthesized sync/burst signal. This tends to improve the luminance timing and chroma purity on anything attempting to display or capture the signal, making the image look better.

    I'm surprised that you have never noticed the image improvement provided by your TBC-1000. But if you're always feeding it with your 9800 with TBC/DNR on, then the image has already been "cleaned" by the VCR, and the TBC-1000 provides no additional improvement to the image.

    Originally Posted by lordsmurf
    The TBC/DNR system inside the VCR is meant to "clean" the image. It does not provide much in terms of signal cleansing.
    The JVC TBCs reinsert a "clean" synthesized sync/burst signal just like any other TBC. You can verify this with a scope or a waveform monitor.

    Originally Posted by lordsmurf
    Cleaning the image and cleaning the signal are separate concepts, although they are closely related and do tend to have a degree of overlap. This is often why people have BOTH a VCR with a TBC and a full-frame TBC in the chain of hardware, to get both services.
    I think that your concept of "cleaning the signal" involves the fact that your TBC-1000 provides an uninterrupted sync output at all times. The JVC built in TBC doesn't do this, and it's a shame because if it did it would eliminate the need for the TBC-1000.

    You should read my TBC description...
    https://www.videohelp.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=279530
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  7. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    Well, the issue with JVC cleaning the image is that it's not ONLY a TBC that is at work. There is other circuitry at work there.

    The TBC alone simply cannot provide image cleaning. That's not what a TBC is for. While it undoubtedly can clean the image, that's not its goal, and it's not as effective as hardware (like the JVC units) that is aimed specifically at NR.

    Inversely, the line TBC of the JVC cannot adequately remove all signal noise that confuses digital equipment, often seen in the form of false MV. This requires a full-frame unit, there is no way to avoid it, aside from not transferring severely messed up tapes, not transferring Macrovision-encoded tapes, and owning a device that simply does not care about signal quality or MV issues.

    And then neither the JVC S-VHS or full-frame TBC has sync filters that perform as well as those found in the JVC D-VHS series of units (yes, D-VHS, not a typo), nor the newer ES10 DVD recorders. Sort of a partial TBC at play here.
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  8. Preservationist davideck's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by lordsmurf
    The TBC alone simply cannot provide image cleaning. That's not what a TBC is for. While it undoubtedly can clean the image, that's not its goal
    So do you agree or disagree that a TBC can improve image quality?

    Originally Posted by lordsmurf
    Inversely, the line TBC of the JVC cannot adequately remove all signal noise that confuses digital equipment, often seen in the form of false MV. This requires a full-frame unit, there is no way to avoid it,
    MV is a disturbance in the Vertical Sync Interval.

    The amount of memory in a TBC has nothing to do with the way it processes the Vertical Sync Interval. It just so happens that your TBC-1000 blanks the MV lines, but the fact that it happens to have a full frame of memory is irrelevant.

    There are MV Removers out there that simply blank the affected lines in the Vertical Sync Interval; no memory required...
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  9. Member Leighgion's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by davideck
    Do you need to adjust any proc amp parameters? If so, a new VCR won't help you there.
    Originally Posted by lordsmurf
    A Proc amp is for color correction, so if you need one, you'll need one. It's a seperate kind of device altogether. If you need a better image quality, and color correction, you'll need both the VCR and the proc amp.

    If you cannot afford both right now, and do need them both, save your tapes for now, do them later. Buy the VCR, and move on to other projects until you can also get the proc amp. I've saved aside tapes, sometimes for years, so I could acquire the hardware I needed, or waited for software to be further developed.
    The ideal is to have both, since I know these tapes as well as tapes in my future could use all the help they can get. I'm fully cognizant of the fact the two units do very different things. The question was just which thing should be reached for first. Unfortunately, I don't really have the choice to set the current set of tapes aside and wait for more than a couple weeks as I am going to accept some money for doing them which will defray the cost of new equipment.

    There's an HR-S9600 on eBay I'm eyeing, but failing that (as is most likely) I'll probably go for a 9911 since those are easier to find. Thought about getting a Sima SCC to save money on the proc amp side, but I'm leaning away from that since I think I'll probably regret it as I now do for having skimped on my VCR. I guess I may just bite the bullet and pay for the Sign Video proc amp too so I can end up with this chain:

    JVC HR-S9600 or 9911
    Datavideo TBC-1000
    Sign Video proc amp
    Aurora IgniterX

    Thanks for the input, guys.
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    Try the JVC SR-V101US. It offers the same features as the 9911, but is CHEAPER. I believe the only differnce is that it has 2MB of TBC memory instead of 4MB that the 9911 has. Put the money you save toward some of your other gear.

    I've had nothing but positive experiences with the SR-V101US so far!
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    Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't the Aurora IgniterX a very expensive capture device (like $2000)? If so, why did you spend so much when your goal is VHS captures? I mean, the money could go much further...have you looked at some of the less expensive solutions recommended around here? Surely these would suffice for VHS caps...?
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  12. Member Leighgion's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by anitract
    Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't the Aurora IgniterX a very expensive capture device (like $2000)? If so, why did you spend so much when your goal is VHS captures? I mean, the money could go much further...have you looked at some of the less expensive solutions recommended around here? Surely these would suffice for VHS caps...?
    Yes, you're quite right, but that IgniterX was purchased a couple years ago, so the money is long spent and it might as well continue to serve me. It was a bit of madness I prefer not to dwell too much on. Back then, I didn't understand as much as I do now about the role of all the hardware that goes into a good analog capture chain and just how limited the VHS format really was. My primary motivation in buying the Igniter at the time was to eliminate any DV codec artifacts from the process, as the Igniter I bought is capable of completely uncompressed capture as well as capturing in MJPEG format. While I wouldn't do the same thing again, I am glad I have a capture device that will produce MJPEG files for me to edit rather than DV. MJPEG, while producing some fat files, is much more flexible than DV.

    I'd be willing to consider a SR-V101US, but I think I looked and had a harder time finding one. If you've got any recommendations of where I look, I'll check it out.
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    Oh I see, no worries. You should see how much money I wasted on Comic Books & baseball cards back in the day...make that couple grand look like pocket change. Really though, there's always ebay.

    I got my VCR from http://www.bhphotovideo.com. It looks like they are out of stock of that model, but you can have them notify you by email when it's in stock.
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  14. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    I would concur, the SR-V101US would be a great model, just $270 new. Shop B&H

    And the find a used Vidicraft Proc Amp for about $40-70 or so. An Elite Video BVP-4 Proc Amp is more advanced, but not sure if you need it or not. Those run about $200-400 used. Shop eBay.
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  15. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by davideck
    Originally Posted by lordsmurf
    The TBC alone simply cannot provide image cleaning. That's not what a TBC is for. While it undoubtedly can clean the image, that's not its goal
    So do you agree or disagree that a TBC can improve image quality?
    Agree. Always have. But it's minimal as compared to what a JVC S-VHS unit can do. The reason is simply because the JVC is made to clean, and implores more than just a line TBC.
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  16. Member Leighgion's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by lordsmurf
    I would concur, the SR-V101US would be a great model, just $270 new. Shop B&H

    And the find a used Vidicraft Proc Amp for about $40-70 or so. An Elite Video BVP-4 Proc Amp is more advanced, but not sure if you need it or not. Those run about $200-400 used. Shop eBay.
    Looked again and that SR-V101US does look like a nice alternate option. Thanks for the heads up, folks.

    I've looked at the Vidicraft proc amps on eBay, but as they've been described on these forums, all of them seem composite-only and I have a kind of personal allergy to composite video ports. Economical as it would be to go with a used Vidicraft, I don't think I can bring myself to do it. I don't have a laserdisc player where there'd be some technical argument to use composite video over s-video.

    Am currently watching one of those BVP-4's on eBay, but my luck with auctions doesn't seem great. Always get out-sniped by the more determined and cutthroat buyers. Also, nice as those Elite Video units sound, if the price rocketed up towards $400, I'd feel better about just going for a Sign Video unit, since they're still sold new. We shall see.
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    LS, what about d-vhs? I see JVC HM-DH40000 D-VHS HDTV recorder for $299.99, cheaper than the 9911.
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  18. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by anzimike
    LS, what about d-vhs? I see JVC HM-DH40000 D-VHS HDTV recorder for $299.99, cheaper than the 9911.
    The D-VHS has nice sync filters. It's also nice for recording.
    But it's no competition to the high end S-VHS units, for cleaning VHS/S-VHS tapes.
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    thanks!
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  20. Member Marvingj's Avatar
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    The Shorter the chain is probably the better but mines is Super Long....Check this out JVC 7900>AVT-8710>Vidicraft Detailer 2> Panny ES10>Sony EV-500w Color Corrector> Laird Pro Amp> Hauppauge 350.............Can't Decide what I need to take off But I get the Greatest Picture...When I Dubbed Of Course it goes to the JVC DVD Recorder!!!! I need to shorten the chain OH Yea Nothing But Monster Cables Of The Way!!
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  21. Preservationist davideck's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by anitract
    Try the JVC SR-V101US. I've had nothing but positive experiences with the SR-V101US so far!
    Originally Posted by lordsmurf
    I would concur, the SR-V101US would be a great model
    As long as we're pluggin' VCRs, I cast a vote for my JVC HR-S6800U.

    Now, let me be the first to acknowledge that my JVC HR-S9600U through my TBC-3000 makes fantastic pictures! I use it for capturing whenever it is the best choice.

    But, for tapes with good quality recordings, I prefer the capture quality of my HR-S6800U through my TBC-3000.
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  22. Preservationist davideck's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by lordsmurf
    Originally Posted by davideck
    Originally Posted by lordsmurf
    The TBC alone simply cannot provide image cleaning. That's not what a TBC is for. While it undoubtedly can clean the image, that's not its goal
    So do you agree or disagree that a TBC can improve image quality?
    Agree. Always have. But it's minimal as compared to what a JVC S-VHS unit can do. The reason is simply because the JVC is made to clean, and implores more than just a line TBC.
    I Agree.
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  23. Member Leighgion's Avatar
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    Following the advice of all you helpful folks, I've got a JVC SR-V101US on order.

    Going to hunt on the proc amp to see what I can get.
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