This video from a youtube member shows that the Grass Valley CVR600 a.k.a Snell & Wilcox TBS190 can be used as a classic TBC in analog passthrough mode, Though it will give better results if the signal is kept digital and fed to the computer using a SDI interface. I recently acquired two of these babies and I will be doing extensive testing in analog passthrough and in digital passthrough, though analog passthrough is not my prefered method since it has a slight loss of quality. I will report back.
The models I got are slightly different, they have analog audio inputs and an ethernet port for ftp control, The one in the video doesn't have analog audio input and have USB 2.0 for control, Never the less all models are fully controled from the front panel and its display.
+ Reply to Thread
Results 1 to 17 of 17
Awesome please let us know. Do you have a TBC to compare it to? And hopefully an old tape you can confirm has issues a TBC would resolve.
I don't use consumer TBC's such as the TBC1000 so don't expect such comparaison, I don't like the way they convert the signal back to analog, I use a workflow that stays digital after the ADC and the TBC is applied, But before you ask where can I get one keep in mind such devices are hard to find and require a SDI to USB or SDI/PCI interface. But capturing with them is easy since they don't rely on computer resources such as CPU and HDD speed or drivers, therefore they have no audio sync problems or dropped frames, they work on any OS. The reason is because capturing is done inside the device into a SDI digital signal, All what the computer has to do is transfer that signal into hard drive via an SDI interface, Kind of like transfering DV to computer using a firewire interface.
I will however do an analog passthrough like in the youtube video and capture with a Pinnacle device just for shits and giggles.
SDI doesn't remove I/O problems. It might not drop frames on I/O issues, but the capture will still abort or crash.
It also doesn't prevent audio sync problems. Anything can, and will, drop frames if the input is unclean. There's nothing special (beneficial) about the SDI method here.
The SDI method was made for clean studio sources, almost never consumer analog. Those that "can" accept it run quality risks, because it's a closed-loop system, and prevent workflow changes to accommodate pesky tapes. It's usually not a 1:1 capture card replacement, but has some % of embedded processing.
The SDI ingest often requires proprietary software, which does have CPU/RAM overhead, often at a usage higher than VirtualDub, more like an NLE.
The SDI-USB bridge interface still requires a driver, and is at risk for Win10/11+ nuking like other hardware not developed for Win10/11 (or probably even if developed for Win10/11!).
If it worked as perfectly as you suggest, I'd have been using it years ago. But SDI workflows, and for consumer analog, has downsides like everything else. It can have issues with the actual digitizing, like everything else. Some don't even output ready-to-use files, but add a processing step due to resolution, etc.
SDI pricing was, and still is, high compared to standard quality USB capture cards (or legacy boxes with internal AGP, PCI, PCIe). I know you got yours during that early/mid 2010s lull, when cheap.
To refer to a specific SDI card, I was never overly impressed by the BrightEye series TBCs. It checked a lot of boxes, but nothing wow'ed.
I'm not anti-SDI, but not pro-SDI either. It's just an option.
Lots of "also has TBC" type devices have always been mixed, mostly bad. I think the BrightEye was decent, but it wasn't going to outperform others, neither for line nor frame performance. For that reason, anytime I see "___ (device) also has a TBC?" I'm immediately skeptical. Too many of those unicorns are horses (or cows or donkeys) with a toilet paper roll duct taped to their head.
Do test it anyway.
This is a situation where I want to be wrong, but almost never am.
I'm glad that my experience with such workflow is otherwise, I do agree and I already mentioned that such devices are hard to come by and very expensive due to limited supply. OS compatibility? Microsoft gets big money from the pro who still use SDI so nuking SDI compatibility will hurt their revenue, Bill Gates is not that dumb.
If it worked as perfectly as you suggest, I'd have been using it years ago.
I'm glad that my experience with such workflow is otherwise
Microsoft isn't dedicated to legacy anymore, and are constantly cutting ties to older hardware and software. In their opinion, you don't need to use anything older than 3-5 years old. Not hardware, not software. It's the kiddie mentality, people that don't really use computers for productivity beyond the new whiz-bang "in" task, games, and Facebook.
At some point, you'll find yourself OS-locked, drivers won't function anymore.
SDI is not legacy, It is standardized to work with every video generation from its creation (SD) to present (4K), it is even proposed to work with 8K. So it is not up to Bill Gates (Which is a referal to Microsoft only) to decide which version of SDI should be allowed to work in the OS, that's up to the SMPTE (The Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers) who defined those standards and the OEM (Original equipement manufacturer) to make the version backward compatibility rules. So finding myself driver locked is slim to none.
I agree, Microsoft doesn't want you to do any creative work besides social media and online shopping, They think only proffesionals with their top dollars equipement and software are entitled to using the full potential of the OS.
Last edited by dellsam34; 19th Jul 2021 at 13:45.
I got my two S&W Kudos Plus TBS800 devices, The first thing I noticed the fans are too noisy from wear and they got to be replaced, I ordered two exact model replacement, I also ordered a DB25 cable to make a custom audio cable to RCA breakout, I will be doing some test in the weekend, Here is some pictures of the inside for the aficionados, Compare the size to the BE75:
Not seeing recognizeable video decoder ICs, so it looks like they may be using some custom FPGA solution + A/D converters (maybe the ADV chips) though the writing is very faint on many of the ICs so can't make out the naming. The chips around the heatsinked one look like memory, and there is also an Atmen ARM chip of some sort, and what looks like video amp/buffers connected to some of the BNC ports.
More wisdom in the community is always good, positive or negative. Please keep us updated on how this goes!
For the life of me I couldn't get the FTP interface to work to access the setting from computer, But I believe because I need a special ethernet cable, The instruction were made for Windows XP, Win 7 is a little different, I will make the special cable and go from there.
The devices tested are Snell & Wilcox TBS800, Ensemble Designs BE75 connected via a SDI-USB3 and capturing with MediaExpress, And the Pinnacle 500-USB (no external TBC) connected to USB2, Windows update nuked 500-USB driver so had to re-install it to be able to get CaptureFlux to work again.
First series of tests, I found a black and white tape that is at least second gen dub, The line TBC of the VCR wouldn't work because it gets confused and makes the picture more wiggly, So for this test the VCR's line TBC is turned off. Samples are in mp4, no cropping and no de-interlacing.
- The first sample is the 500-USB no frame TBC, no line TBC, quality is the worst, image is slightly darker.
- The second sample is the BE75, It has a frame TBC but no line TBC, quality slightly better
- The third sample is the TBS800, It has a frame TBC and it appears to have some line TBC functionality, I'm surprised that it gave a pretty good output and the best out of the three.
More tests with other tapes will follow.
I viewed few tapes with the TBS800 and it's a solid performer so far, I'm impressed. Will take some more comparison samples when I get time.
I took the second unit completly a part and the main video chip is the Analog Devices ADV7802, From the specs all those features are enabled and tested, The only features I didn't test and I leave off all the time are the de-interlacing, upscaling and format conversion.
My next project is making an all in one box since it has some room inside as you can see from the pictures above, I want to fit in the SDI to USB box after removing it from its box and an unbalanced to balanced box after removing it from its enclosure as well as its 24V power adapter, So that way I will only have Y-BNC, C-BNC, L-R RCA Stereo inputs, a USB 3.0 port, ethernet port for ftp control, and a power socket. As soon as I get all the parts and start working on the project I will update the thread.
So it's a ADV7802 under the central heatsink and not some FPGA? I noticed traces going straight from the analog inputs to the chip under the heatsink.
Tough to tell from the pictures, but looks like a ADV7340 or ADV7341 on the output side, near as I can tell. CPU looks to be an AT91SAM7X512. Audio looks to be 4-in/4-out job based around the WM8778?
InSync also looks to be the actual designer and manufacturer of the hardware inside?
Last edited by energizerfellow; 6th Sep 2021 at 23:31.
No, the ADV7802 is on the opposite side not under the heat sink, Under the heat sink is the FPGA judging by the memory modules surrounding it. The model I have is the TBS800BD.
I wish I can find the pins that carry the unbalanced analog audio before it goes into the ADC so I don't have to use an external Unbalanced to balanced converter connected to the D-sub 25 connector.
Last edited by dellsam34; 6th Sep 2021 at 23:43.