I'm planning to look for a good and durable S-VHS which should not need much servicing.
Most of the ones I can find on german eBay are the Panasonic FS88, the NV-HS900 (not 950!) or similar looking models to the NV-HS1000. The others are either too expensive, non-S-VHS models, not working or others which I don't know if they are good enough. Which ones would you reccomend for under 150€ which are service-friendly and good for digitizing many tapes over a long period of time? An good standard VHS recorder would be nice too, but I'd like to get the best out of my tapes. Is that possible? I've already read the reccomendations but what about the FS-88 or a clone of it? Does it fullfill my requierments? It is not listed there.
Currently I am using a PHILIPS VR850 with TurboDrive.
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If a Panasonic FS88 is a good choice also depends on your capture card and your TBC. The FS88 is a Panasonic FS200 without TBC.
At digital.faq I have listed an overview of all Pansonic and JVC devices as they were released in Germany.
I use a Philips VR1100.....a JVC clone. They used to be readily available in Germany but prices have skyrocketed.
The FS88 in combination with a DMR-EH52 would be a good capture option. Provided the FS88 is in good shape. You should not forget that the device is probably about 30 years old and it may well be that some electrolytic capacitors and other parts must be renewed.
In any case, a good alternative to a Panasonic FS200 if its TBC is not needed. If a Panasonic or a JVC vcr best copes with your tapes, you have to find out for yourself.
I want to get the best out of the tapes as I plan to throw some away after digitization.
Some tapes are recorded with an AKAI recorder which the tape is unplayable on any of my machines. (Tracking)
To get the best out of your tapes you need more than just one VCR.
This is also the reason why many people who are more intensively involved in recording analog tapes have several devices to select the best one that fits the video tapes.
Minimum would be 2 VCRs, either a Panasonic FS200 or Panasonic H1000 and a JVC (or Philips clone) VCR built between 1999-2004 with TBC. It is recommended to buy a JVC without the dynamic drum.
In addition 2 different recommendable DVD recorders (Panasonic, Pioneer/Sony) as TBC replacement if the TBC of the video recorder does not bring the desired result. As well as an external frame TBC like Datavideo-1000, AVT-8710, Electronic Design TBC-Enhancer and a suitable capture card.
From the Pinnacle devices are actually only 4 models recommendable the 500,510,700,710 which are all based on the Marvin chipset.
There is no device that plays all tapes perfectly. This applies to the VCR, the external TBC, DVD recorder & the capture card. Each has its weak points.
Which device to use always depends on the tapes to be recorded.
Were the tapes recorded in SP, LP, EP, ET mode?
Are they originals with copy protection (Macrovision).
Are they ...nd generation copy?
Were high quality branded cassettes used to match the recording VCR or only cheap cassettes?
These are just a few points that come to mind.
Everyone wants to get the best out of his videotapes, but then you have to accept that you have to invest a lot or say goodbye to the "best".
As already mentioned, a Panasonic FS-88 in conjunction with your Panasonic DMR and the Pinnacle will give a satisfactory result with some of your tapes but certainly not all.