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  1. Member
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    Has any of you ever seen a Betamax (cord) VCR w/ s-video out? Like, recently, for sale, working condition? I've never seen one. I think I've read it existed tho.

    Edit: PAL
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  2. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    If any did, it'd be SuperBeta.
    But I don't believe those ever had s-video either.

    Note: Not a Betamax user, but I do frequently read posts from other on the topic.
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    Woot! I actually know something ls doesn't! Red letter day!

    AFAIK, only the top SuperBeta machines had it. These are all NTSC.

    SL-HF900
    SL-HF1000

    EDV-7500/7300 (Japanese version)
    EDV-9500/9300 (Japanese version)

    SL-HF2100 (15th Anniversary Beta)
    SL-HF2000 [Edit: Less featured than the 2100 and the last conventional Betamax. Can't remember if the ED-Betas came before after).

    Note that these are all top end models and a working one is $1000+

    Check out mrbetamax.com for details.

    Betamax was[n't] popular in Europe [as I recall, even losing out to V-2000], so I don't think there are PAL equivalents. Here's the PAL Beta site. Note that it states that the SL-HF950 (equivalent to the SL-HF750) is the only SuperBeta Hi-Fi machine [Edit: It's the only UK model. The SL-HF77 was a non UK SuperBeta Hi-Fi model), and doesn't have S-Video.

    Edit: By the time Beta Hi-fi was introduced in 1983 and SuperBeta in 1985, everyone else was out of the market but Sony, not that anything IMO was as good as a Sony anyway.
    Last edited by lingyi; 13th Feb 2020 at 00:39.
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    There's also the EDC-55 ED-Beta Cam which may have had S-video out since it was part of the ED-Beta line. It was essentially a Pro Eng camera with an ED-Beta recorder instead of Beta SP. The MSRP was $7700 and the lowest I ever saw it listed for was $4500-$5000. Unlike all the other Betamax machinese, which I've either owned or saw in person, I never saw this in real life.
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  5. No pal beta with svideo out
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  6. Member DB83's Avatar
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    Not so sure about the comment that Betamax lost out to V2000 in the UK. At least one could get a decent range of home cassettes on Beta. Never saw a single issue for the Phillips.


    And, as you may now have gathered, my very first VCR was a Beta. Technically superior to VHS but even Sony eventually went that way.
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    I'm not sure where I read it about V-2000 beating Beta in Europe. It was either in Akio Morita's Made In Japan or Fast Forward: Hollywood, the Japanese, and the Onslaught of the VCR James Lardner, both excellent reads pre-internet.

    I don't know if there were any V-2000 prerecorded tapes. but it was popular enough for home use to last until 1988, by which time VHS clearly won the format wars. The small number of PAL Betamax machines, especially high end models is testament to the lack of popularity in Europe.

    As much as I loved Sony (had 20+ Betamax(s) at one point), I refused to buy a Sony VHS machine. Seemed like heresy! I owned three VHS machines. The first was a mid-range JVC, replaced by a mid-range Panasonic, both with VHS Hi-FI and the last was a low end non Hi-Fi for the very odd VHS tape I had towards the end of my VCR days. *SIGH*
    Last edited by lingyi; 15th Feb 2020 at 13:25.
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  8. Member DB83's Avatar
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    Apologies to the OP for 'hi-jacking' his topic but I think he already had his answer.


    If memory serves I obtained my Sony SL-C5 in 1981/2. At that time the better choice would have been the C7 but that was beyond my price-range (even the C5 at, I believe, 450 was pushing it).


    And I think the price of these was a big factor in the success (or lack thereof). Really they were niche products for the UK and blank tapes were horrendously expensive. I would have loved to have kept it as I did build up a collection of home-taped material and commercial. But service parts dried out - a mate of mine was in the business of repair - so I bit the bullet and transferred what I could to VHS (and even then VCR to VCR connections were not good) and binned the rest (managed to trade off the commercial ones)
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    Ahhh...I remember drooling over pics of the SL-C7 until I learned it was a SL-5400 or SL-5600 under the skin. If I'm correct, it didn't have the special effects features, clear variable slow motion that was introduced with the SL-5800 (my first Betamax) in 1980. I still drooled over the wireless remote (the SL-5800 was wired), but in 1981? I got the SL-2000 portable that did have a wireless remote as well as variable, though no jog wheel. It wouldn't be until I got my SL-HF900 that I got a real jog wheel.

    Edit: Rightfully so, the SL-C7 and SL-C5 were near legendary "tank" Betamax(s) as where the SL-5400, SL-5600 and SL-5800. It underwent a lot of repairs, but over the ~15 years of my Beta loving years, it probably got the most and longest use, being retired only because it it wasn't SuperBeta and Beta Hi-Fi.
    Last edited by lingyi; 15th Feb 2020 at 14:50.
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  10. Member DB83's Avatar
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    I had a point of reference - twas a month or two before 'Chukka Charles' married Diana. So it was early 1981.


    Mind you, the machine did not come with a remote of any type and I obtained that separately. Pretty sure that itself cost 50.


    And if you told peeps today that you controlled electronic equipment by means of a wire they would laugh at you


    The C5 was a rare beast and I had to wait several weeks or more after ordering it at a local store. There were some horror stories at that time of people opening their boxes only to find them full of bricks.
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    I think the C5 was the equivalent of the SL-5400 and the C7 was equivalent to the SL-5600. I don't know what the C6 was. I don't think Europe ever got equivalent of the SL-5800. The C9 was the SL-2500 which was essentially the portable SL-2000/TT-2000 in one chassis.
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    Originally Posted by lingyi View Post
    I'm not sure where I read it about V-2000 beating Beta in Europe. It was either in Akio Morita's Made In Japan or Fast Forward: Hollywood, the Japanese, and the Onslaught of the VCR James Lardner, both excellent reads pre-internet.

    I don't know if there were any V-2000 prerecorded tapes. but it was popular enough for home use to last until 1988, by which time VHS clearly won the format wars. The small number of PAL Betamax machines, especially high end models is testament to the lack of popularity in Europe.

    As much as I loved Sony (had 20+ Betamax(s) at one point), I refused to buy a Sony VHS machine. Seemed like heresy! I owned three VHS machines. The first was a mid-range JVC, replaced by a mid-range Panasonic, both with VHS Hi-FI and the last was a low end non Hi-Fi for the very odd VHS tape I had towards the end of my VCR days. *SIGH*
    Ginopilotino states apparently quite firmly few posts above there were no PAL s-video machines tho. I was about to take it for granted.
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    Originally Posted by DB83 View Post
    Apologies to the OP for 'hi-jacking' his topic but I think he already had his answer.


    If memory serves I obtained my Sony SL-C5 in 1981/2. At that time the better choice would have been the C7 but that was beyond my price-range (even the C5 at, I believe, 450 was pushing it).


    And I think the price of these was a big factor in the success (or lack thereof). Really they were niche products for the UK and blank tapes were horrendously expensive. I would have loved to have kept it as I did build up a collection of home-taped material and commercial. But service parts dried out - a mate of mine was in the business of repair - so I bit the bullet and transferred what I could to VHS (and even then VCR to VCR connections were not good) and binned the rest (managed to trade off the commercial ones)
    Captain, hijack away. BTW my machine is Sanyo VTC 5000, still quite decent shape, makes VHS machines laughable in comparison. I understand it was quite popular in the UK back in the day. Did you happen to own one?
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    Would it be meaningful to use a BNC to s-video converter on the BNC out of a Beta VCR? I presume it would be completely meaningless?
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    No. The BNC Out is still composite video. Nothing to be gained by converting to s-video and you may actually degrade the signal by conversion.
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  16. Originally Posted by kodec View Post
    Ginopilotino states apparently quite firmly few posts above there were no PAL s-video machines tho. I was about to take it for granted.
    I live in NTSC-land, so I can't speak to that, but I did do some research which suggested that there actually were some PAL S-video VCRs. However, compared to what S-video does for NTSC, I'm not sure the benefit on a PAL VCR would be as large. My memory is that S-video on NTSC eliminated the need for a comb filter which was used to get better extraction of the chroma signal from the composite video. The color on composite video from a VHS (or Beta) consumer VCR was pretty awful, especially at the red end of the spectrum.
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    Please list the machines you've seen referenced.

    Rethinking and re-checking, even the SL-HF900, SL-HF1000 and SL-HF2000 didn't have S-Video out. Only the SL-HF2100 and the ED-Betas did. And these were among the last Betamax machines made. Got confused because the SL-HF900 and EDV-7500 were my favorite machines for playback, giving a better picture than the SL-HF2100.
    Last edited by lingyi; 17th Feb 2020 at 21:32.
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    Originally Posted by johnmeyer View Post
    Originally Posted by kodec View Post
    Ginopilotino states apparently quite firmly few posts above there were no PAL s-video machines tho. I was about to take it for granted.
    I live in NTSC-land, so I can't speak to that, but I did do some research which suggested that there actually were some PAL S-video VCRs. However, compared to what S-video does for NTSC, I'm not sure the benefit on a PAL VCR would be as large. My memory is that S-video on NTSC eliminated the need for a comb filter which was used to get better extraction of the chroma signal from the composite video. The color on composite video from a VHS (or Beta) consumer VCR was pretty awful, especially at the red end of the spectrum.

    He was talking about Beta, as per thread. There are numerous VHS PALs w/ s-video.
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  19. Originally Posted by kodec View Post
    He was talking about Beta, as per thread. There are numerous VHS PALs w/ s-video.
    Yes, I fully understand that the both the OP and ginopilotino were talking about Beta. and there were talking about PAL; they both made that quite clear. I was merely pointing out that even if a Beta PAL VCR did exist that it probably wouldn't provide anywhere near the benefit as S-video provides for NTSC. In other words, whether Beta or VHS the video signal is either PAL or NTSC, and providing a separate signal path for a PAL encoded video will not help as much as doing the same for NTSC because of the significantly different way that color is encoded in the two different standards.
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    Then it would help as little. But since it doesn't exist it doesn't matter anymore.
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