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Need help recording protected VHS to DVD

  Thread Last Poster Posts Last Post
Archive through November 16, 2006David Massey100
Archive through August 13, 2006James Churchwell100
Archive through June 25, 2006Debra Ledford100
Archive through June 12, 2006David Massey100
Archive through May 25, 2006David Massey100
Archive through April 15, 2006Simone Holcomb100
Archive through February 01, 2006chris lindgren100
Archive through September 16, 2005Chico_ca_phoenix100
 

Bronze Member
Username: Crazide

Post Number: 27
Registered: Apr-06
Me again ...
Are you saying the RCA cables that are attached or kinda molded together .. will work? I have two sets of them. There are a Red, White, and Yellow molded together ... If I'm thinking correctly That would equal 4 ... Two red, two white and of course two yellow ... and then Yellow cables are coming with the Sima.
No cables goes to the TV?
 

Bronze Member
Username: Crazide

Post Number: 29
Registered: Apr-06
Trouble posting ... Lets try it one more time.
I have two sets of RCA cables ... there are a white, red and yellow kinda molded together in each set ... if I'm tinking correctly that would be 4? Will those type work? Then there are yellow cables coming with the Sima.

No cables go to the TV?
 

Bronze Member
Username: Lthompson

Alabama

Post Number: 51
Registered: May-06
Hi G, you can actually take those wires and strip them apart. As long as you connect yellow ends to the correct place on your VCR and your DVD recorder. Dont matter if they are still molded together or split apart. I split some of mine, it was easier.
And I dont think that I got yellow cables with my CT 200 , you will need 2 sets of those one from VCR into CT200 and one set out of CT200 into the DVD recorder. Orange to Orange, White to White.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3120
Registered: Jul-04
You'll need cables to the TV too. If the TV has component inputs, those are the best, if not s-video, if the TV doesn't have either, then you'll have to use RCAs. If using component or s-video, you still need RCAs for audio.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 129
Registered: Mar-06
G -

I would recommend that you don't split your cables apart and leave them "molded together." But they will work as well either way.

You say you have two sets. Assuming that you're going to use one set to connect the recorder output to the TV (which means that your TV has RCA inputs) then you'll use the other set to connect your player to your DVD recorder. The red and white cables go directly from player to recorder. The yellow goes from the player to the input of the Sima. That leaves the output of the Sima not yet connected to the recorder. You'll need one more yellow cable to make that connection.

Note that, as I've said before and as David also just mentioned, it doesn't actually need to be yellow since the color coding is only for convenience sake and all of the RCA cables are "the same" in that a red one or white one will work just as well as a yellow one and vice versa. So if you have another red or white cable around, you can use that. And, you can use it even if it's molded to another color cable. So, for example, if you have a red and white pair of molded cables (from your stereo, most likely), you could use the red (or white) cable and just leave the other cable hanging at both ends.

The connections are simple and so I'll post this link AGAIN!!! You want to hook it up just as you see in the first diagram as you scroll down the page -

http://www.xdimax.com/dvd/dvdredpro.html

Obviously, you'll be using your Sima, and not the Red Pro. But the hookups are the same. You said you got the CT-2 (not the CT-200), so there won't be any S-video connections on it.

You didn't say whether or not your Sima is coming with the extra yellow cable that came with it when it was new. If your seller is supplying it with your Sima, then that's the one you'll use and you'll have all you need.

Now, if your Sima isn't coming with the extra yellow cable, I can confuse you some more. Because if your TV has an S-video input, then you could use your S-video cable to connect your recorder to your TV. But (as David said) you still need to use the red and white audio cables between the recorder and the TV. Soooooo, you could THEN split one of your RCA sets (or just split off the yellow cable and leave the other two molded together), which would then give you the extra yellow cable you need for the Sima connection, and use the leftover red and white set to make the audio connection from the recorder to the TV.

Is that confusing enuff?

David, I checked both my D-R4's and you were right on target. The one that changed was set to "use" and the other was set to "no use."

So that indeed was all that was about.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jchurch43

Denver, Colorado USA

Post Number: 84
Registered: May-06
Hi Ya'll,

Just thought I would jump in here since I haven't posted for awhile. Been keeping up with all the questions & info, just not getting involved right now. Looks like you guys are doing pretty well without me.

My D-R4 is doing great. I finally ordered the Dimex stabilizer. It is doing great too.

Keep posting. Later, Jim
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3125
Registered: Jul-04
You can pick up D-R4s from 2ndturn on ebay dirt cheap right now, they don't have a remote, but I use a One For All 8910 to operate mine. The only thing I had to teach it was the easy navi, if it's in the advanced functions they e-mailed, I haven't been able to find it. There's a navagation code, but it isn't easy navi. So for someone without the original remote, you can't finalize the discs without easy navi. You can't even set the clock without the remote and you can't do anything without the clock set. The easy navi function is probably in there somewhere, but I haven't been able to find it. I just bought 3 of them for $65 total.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3126
Registered: Jul-04
OK, I just looked through the functions again and easy navi is there, it's called virtual remo. So someone can buy a D-R4 for $20-25 and get a One For All 8910 and upgrade it to operate the Toshiba. You can buy the remote at Amazon for $20 new or $9 refurb.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Crazide

Post Number: 30
Registered: Apr-06
Good Morning and a big THANK YOU to all that posted with such HELPFUL information!
My Sima arrived Friday ... and as I type I am transfering! Yippee! Yeah, Yeee Hawww!!!

I was a little confused last night as I was connecting cables to player - recorder - TV. Whew! Wires, wires, wires!!!!

At first the RCA molded wasn't working ... I found some seperate RCA cables that came with the Magnavox player and they worked ... I don't think there's any difference but I'M NOT TAKING THEM LOSE TO SEE!

And David thank you for posting that there DOES have to be a cable ran to the TV from the player.
I guess your post was on but here I didn't take time to check as I was connecting and disconnecting wires. But I knew in my mind there HAD to be at least one! So I found a yellow RCA and put it from player to TV ...Voila! a picture when I put my DVR on input2 front.
Oh yes! I got my VCR hooked up that I can transfer from VCR to DVD using my MCM stabelizer ... and I got mt DVD player hooked up to transfer to DVD-R with my Sima, I don't have to re-connect or undo any wires to do this. It is stationary. Yes there are a LOT of wires here! Only I know and can understand what I've done. Really I don't understand ... but I know it works.

I used the front connector jacks on my DVD-R for DVD transferring (that is input2 front) ... and used the back connectors for VCR. (that is input 1)

Oh yes, Please Tell me what component connection is. My recorder has Svideo but not sure about my TV. Right now evething is RCA cables ... for I don't know what component is ???

And Tmax my Sima CT2 does have a place for Svideo conection, but I only had 1 Svideo cable. It came with 2 Yellow cables.}

Once again, THANK YOU, THANK YOU VERRY MUCH!
 

Bronze Member
Username: Crazide

Post Number: 31
Registered: Apr-06
A correction on my last post ... so I won't confuse others. The RCA cable to TV is from Output on DVD-R.

Just wanted to clear that up.
Good day...
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 130
Registered: Mar-06
G -

Yes, now I see that the CT-2 does apparently have S-video connections. I also see that it apparently also uses (or can use) an AC adaptor. For some reason, I wuz thinking the CT-2 could only be used with a battery.

So it would seem that the only difference(s) between the CT-2 and the CT-200 is that the latter has more enhancement modes and an auto shut off feature (which is good because these units apparently can overheat if left on too long).

As to my S-video cable suggestion, I was suggesting you might use that from your DVD player/recorder output to your TV (if your TV has an S-video connection), which would save you one RCA video cable. Thus you only need one S-video cable.

But it seems you have plenty of RCA cables anyway.

Now, if you want to see ANOTHER connection diagram, check out ebay item 270056368658.

He's selling a CT-2 but the connection diagram is shown with a CT-200. But it matters not since the two are (apparently) the same as far as connectors/connections go.

As far as connecting these things up goes, it seems that you and some others here try to set it all up so that you can record everything and play back everything without changing any connections. Frankly, I think it's not such a good idea.

For example, you undoubtedly have your DVD player's output going to your DVD recorder's input, then the recorder's input going to the TV.

That's great for recording a DVD and monitoring it as you're recording it, but to play back and watch a DVD, you can't use your player. You can only use your recorder (as a player). AND, you'll also have to have your CT-2 powered up because ya can't see the video unless it's powered up.

Unless you disconnect it and run that video wire directly to the recorder.

Now, you COULD use your DVD player to play the DVD, but you'd have to then have both your recorder and CT-2 on so that the signal would pass thru them to the TV.

So you're always "overusing" your recorder and CT-2, which is why I think it's a bad idea.

Better to use the recorder and CT-2 only for recording, and use the player to play and watch your DVDs (including the copies you've made).

All you need to do is unplug the player's output wires and plug them directly into the TV.

So maybe it's a lot more convenient to do it the other way, but I think it's not such a good idea at all. The connections really aren't all that confusing once you get the hang of it.

That's just another of my 2 cents' worth.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3127
Registered: Jul-04
If your TV doesn't have s-video, it definitely doesn't have component. The components are the triple RCA connections red/green/blue. Look on the back of the recorder, you'll see them.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jchurch43

Denver, Colorado USA

Post Number: 85
Registered: May-06
David,

G brought up a good point. I've seen the RCA red/green/blue connectors on the back of my recorders too, but I never knew what they are for. What is the difference and/or advantage of the red/white/yellow RCA connetions and the red/green/blue RCA component connection?
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3128
Registered: Jul-04
Composite sends the entire signal on 1 cable, s-video seperates luminance and chrominance, component seperates luminance and red/blue/green. In other words, component is better than s-video or composite and s-video is better than composite. The difference you'll see between them mostly depends on the TV. On a cheap TV there may be little or no difference, on a good TV, there will be a big difference.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Crazide

Post Number: 32
Registered: Apr-06
Tmax, I'm not disputing you ... but ... I unpluged the Sima CT 2 from the wall outlet, and I hit record on my DVD-R to record from TV and or cable TV(Meaning antena) and it worked ... then to see IF I could view it thru my TV without the CT2 powered up ... and I could.
You are correct on the player, it won't allow me to view anything unless the CT 2 is powered up. But my VCR and DVD-R works fine. Right now I can't describe the connection, but if you want me to I can look on the back and try to draw a diagram.

I'm just HAPPY that I found the CT2 at a reasonal buy and it WORKS!!!!
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 131
Registered: Mar-06
G -

That sounds right to me. You should be able to use your DVD recorder as a player without the CT-2 being powered since the CT-2 is hooked between your DVD player (your other machine) and the DVD recorder. So it's not between your recorder and the TV, thus it's not involved in that process.

So I was wrong when I said that you'd need the CT-2 powered up when you use your recorder as the player. But I guess I was right when I said it would have to be powered up if you wanted to use your player to view DVDs (as presently set up). You seem to have confirmed that.

I THINK the same should be true of your VCR (your MCM would have to be "active") tho' you seem to be saying it works fine. That might be because the MCM is "on"(?). If you try it with that turned off, I think you won't see the tape you're playing.

So the relevant part of what I said before is that you have to use your recorder to play and view DVDs (as presently set up) rather than your player, which is "overuse" of your recorder. Better to use your player for watching DVDs because those are much cheaper to replace. Save your recorder for making recordings.

And I think I was correct when I said that your recorder would also have to be turned on (as well as the CT-2) when using your player to view DVDs. You've confirmed the CT-2 has to be on (powered up) but you didn't say whether the recorder needed to also be on. I think it does, but I could be wrong again.

If it does, that's also not such a good thing since it requires you to have your recorder turned on more often than "necessary." If you just run your player's connections directly to the TV when you want to watch a DVD, you save all that extra "on time" for both your CT-2 and your recorder.

Glad to hear that it's all working and your ebay CT-2 works fine. You should be all set now. If you've got a lot of stuff to copy (like 200), you might want read some of the old posts earlier this year and go get some TY discs from meritline @ 25 cents apiece (or 100 for 30 cents apiece). David recommended them to me (us) and now I can highly recommend them based on my experience with them.
 

New member
Username: Quickbeam

Post Number: 2
Registered: Nov-06
Now that I have a bit more experience transferring VHS to DVD, I'd like to restate a question. I've recorded about 150 movies with about 15 kicking out for copyright protection. My plan is to finish the whole library then go to a stabilizer to complete the copy protected films.

What I still can't figure out is the logic and timeline to copy protection. My experiences show me that some studios copy protected some things and not others. Disney and the Turner catalog? Early adopters. WB and Paramount? Really hit or miss. Are there any time or studio rules of thumb here? Any way to tell before I set up to record? I hate surprises.

I have read through the archives so if this is there, I missed it. Thanks.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3140
Registered: Jul-04
The only way you'd be able to tell is to connect 2 VCRs together and have the TV connected to the 2nd VCR.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 132
Registered: Mar-06
I finally got a bad TY disc. I recorded ~30 min. on it and then it bombed out. When I looked at it I found a small dot right at the point where recording stopped. It looks like a physical defect in the disc. Now it won't play or accept any more recording. Too bad I can't figure how to "skip over" the bad spot.

David?

(I hate wasting 25 cents)

So I have now used 70 TY discs and gotten one bad one. Which translates to 25 cents wasted on the $17.75 I spent on the 71 discs.

Assuming the same success rate from here on (next 70 discs fine), that'll be 25 cents wasted for $35.25 invested (for 141 discs) and 50 cents wasted for the $50 I spent on the 200 TY discs.

Or 2 bad discs out of 200. I think that's a 1% failure rate.

Ya can't beat that, especially considering how inexpensive these discs are.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3142
Registered: Jul-04
The few discs that are defective you can't do anything about. I've only seen about 6-10 or so in over 2000 discs. Most of them had chips in the outside edge of the disc. If you looked at them before burning, you'd clearly see it. I had 1 with a bad spot in the dye, and another with a small crater near the outside edge.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 133
Registered: Mar-06
Ya, I looked at the spot thru a lens and it's definitely a small crater in the disc. The disc loaded fine and recorded fine up to that spot. But now it can't be read or played.

I guess if you have a problem like that near the outside edge -- and know it's there -- you can still record to that point. But can you finalize the disc? If so, a problem like this on the outside edge still allows you to use most of the disc's recording space.

Looks like once you record to the bad spot, then there's nothing that can be done with the disc. But if you stop short of it, can the disc be finalized?
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3143
Registered: Jul-04
Yes, if the recording was stopped before the bad spot, it could be finalized.
 

New member
Username: Laurachester3

Post Number: 1
Registered: Nov-06
I have read all the about messages and was wondering if anyone was sucessful in recording Disney VHS to DVD with the CT-200? and is there any stores you can buy it at or do you have to order it? I hate to wait. LOL
 

New member
Username: Jemboyd

Trinidad & T...

Post Number: 1
Registered: Nov-06
There are certain channels on cable tv that when I try to record them to DVD, the resulting picture changes every few seconds from full screen to letterbox, and back again - not all the channels do this, but quite a few. When I record to VCR, this doesn't happen, and if I copy the same programme to DVD from the VCR the picture is fine - what's wrong?
 

New member
Username: Rawhit

Post Number: 1
Registered: Dec-06
Okay here's a twist.

I am copying my vhs tapes to my computer to burn to DVD. I am doing this through my MiniDV camcorder Canon E100. (camcorder has firewire to PC and a single AV jack for the cord from my VCR) Some VHS tapes copy to my PC just fine and some don't because of the copyright restriction.

Will the CT-200 (or any other stabilizer) work if I hook it up between my VCR and my MiniDV camcorder?

Thanks.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Crazide

Post Number: 33
Registered: Apr-06
MERRY CHRISTMAS to all ... and once again THANKS for ALL the help and info. You are a GREAT group of people.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 134
Registered: Mar-06
Thanks G. Same to you and everyone. Happy New Year too!!

 

New member
Username: Olinger_78

Saltville, Virginia United States

Post Number: 1
Registered: Jan-07
Hey Everyone!
I have a major problem that i am hoping someone can answer. I have a little girl and i have always bought VHS movies for her. Now she has two DVD players and i want to take her VHS movies and record them to DVD. I have a sv2000 DVD recorder vcr combo and another Magnavox DVD and VCR combo player. I have the two connected by RCA cables. The problem i am having is that that the VHS tapes are copy protected and I can not record them over to DVD. Please tell me how to go around this and what will work to get this done. I would like to be able to Copy from VHS to DVD and from DVD to DVD. Please understand that I am only doing this for personal use and not to make Money .....Thanks}
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jchurch43

Denver, Colorado USA

Post Number: 86
Registered: May-06
You need to purchase a stabilizer to place between the source player and the target DVD recorder. There are many brands available and many places to purchase them. If you go back through this message board, you will find that David Massey (our resident authority on this subject) recommends a couple of stabilizers. Several people have had good luck with the CT-2000. Personally, I the Dimax. You can also go to eBay and search for Digital Video Stabilizers. Just make sure that whereever you purchase it, that it is compatible with your brand of Recorder. Most stabilizers are compatible with most recorders.
You will need to connect the video out jack from your source (VHS) to the video in jack of the stabilizer. Then connect the video out jack of the stabilizer to the input jack of the DVD recorder. The audeo connects directly from the source to the recorder.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 136
Registered: Mar-06
David -

Do you have any recommendation on an RW disc for the D-R4?
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3205
Registered: Jul-04
I use 2x Verbatims. You probably can't get 2x discs in a B&M store, but they're on ebay. I don't know if 4x will work or not. I've got some 2x Fuji RWs too, they're both MCC, Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation or whatever it's called.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 137
Registered: Mar-06
Thanks David. I hope these are the ones - verbatim 2x dvd-rw media

because I just placed an order for 10 of them w/ free ground shipping. The same thing at meritline would have cost me $18.56, so I guess this is a good price (?).

Let me know if these aren't the right ones. Thanks.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3218
Registered: Jul-04
That looks like them. I bought them in a cake box, but that should be the right ones. I always do a full erase on the PC before reusing them, but you shouldn't have to. I had problems with a couple of them way back, I think because they were used in 3 or 4 different burners without ever having a full erase, so I just do the full erase each time to be sure. After erasing them they were fine. You can only do a full erase in a PC burner.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 138
Registered: Mar-06
Okay, they arrived a couple of hours ago and I'm recording on one now. Having had no experience with these RW discs, I just put it in the drawer, then quickly learned ya have to format it first. I got prompted to go to "Disc Management" and format the disc. Not taking the time to read my owner's manual, I just did that and formatted it. There didn't seem to be anything more to do except maybe number the disc (like a disc name or label?). Anyway, I tried it and it works fine. I guess you erase them by simply reformatting them again -- but I'll pull out my owners manual and check it out tomorrow.

I got these for several uses. The main one is that I'm now into OTA digital TV (I loathe paying for TV because I really don't want to watch it very much other than PBS and sports) and one of the channels I'm getting is The Tube, which is all music videos and nothing else. Being a bit of a guitar player, I'm going to record whatever they're broadcasting during the day (2 hours to a disc) and then see what I get and transfer what I want to keep to the TY discs. That way, I can rip off some good riffs and also have some interesting music videos.

It's a poor man's TiVo kinda thing.

If these work as advertised, ya can't beat them for $1.19 each (with free shipping!). And each came in its own jewel case to boot.

If you have any more suggestions, let me know. Thanks much for all the good info.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3251
Registered: Jul-04
Instead of reformatting them, just erase them. Go into easynavi and select delete title. I don't know about RW discs, but RAM discs don't like being reformatted over and over. When a RAM disc dies, it's usually from reformatting instead of just deleting.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Lthompson

Alabama

Post Number: 52
Registered: May-06
I use the RW disk in my DVD recorder like I use my VCR to record things I want to see while I am at work and then Delete the Title Plus I have to Erase them also, 2 different steps to use them again and again, only had to format mine once.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jchurch43

Denver, Colorado USA

Post Number: 87
Registered: May-06
I bought two different brands of DVD-RW, Maxell & Ridata. My Emerson recorder will format both, but my Toshiba won't format either. I couldn't find any TY-RW. I don't think TY makes them. What brand will the Toshiba D-R4 format?
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jchurch43

Denver, Colorado USA

Post Number: 88
Registered: May-06
David, what is the difference in a Gold member and a Bronze member?
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3255
Registered: Jul-04
I use Verbatim 2x RWs. They are MCC (Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation). I have some old Fujis that are MCC too, I don't know if the new ones are. I don't know if the new ones are. I bought mine in a 30 spindle on ebay for $20 plus $5 or $6 shipping. Tmax bought some in cases a week or so ago. Look at his January 18 post, there's a link there. Gold and Bronze is amount of posts. You start out Bronze, then go to silver at 100 I think, then Gold at 1000 I think.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jchurch43

Denver, Colorado USA

Post Number: 89
Registered: May-06
Thanks for the info. Do you know if there is a way to get around the Cannot Format problem with my current disks? Probebly not, or you would have said so. Thought I would ask. I will check out the link on TMax's post. Thanks again.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3258
Registered: Jul-04
There's a firmware update for the D-R4 that Toshiba will send for free, you just have to call them, it's not on the website. It's for finalization problems, so I don't know if it will help. You could try a full erase in Decrypter. Click tools, drive, erase disc, full erase. It takes a half hour with 2x discs. If the discs are 4x or higher, they may not be compatible with the recorder.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 139
Registered: Mar-06
Okay, now I have a question. I have a full disc (-RW) that I'm done with and want to use over again. I didn't finalize the disc because there was no need to. But I don't see how to "erase" it without re-formatting it. I see how to cancel the finalization so that it can be re-recorded, but I didn't finalize it. So do I have to finalize it just so's I can cancel the finalization (and re-record on the disc)? Seems silly. Liz says she "Delete(s) the Title Plus I have to Erase them also, 2 different steps to use them again and again, only had to format mine once."

So, is that what I have to do? I can't find anything in the owners manual that tells me how to do it other than "canceling the finalzation."

Deleting the title(s) doesn't do it. I deleted a title and that didn't create any new space on the disc when I checked the "disc infomation" window.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3262
Registered: Jul-04
You only get more space on the disc when you delete the last title. If you have 4 titles on a disc, deleting 1-3 won't give any more record time, deleting the last title will. The discs don't have to be erased, there's no erase option on the Toshiba.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Lthompson

Alabama

Post Number: 53
Registered: May-06
Tmax, I dont have to finalize my RW to play on other machines. I have an RCA recorder. Everything is a little different.
Linda
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3263
Registered: Jul-04
+ discs sometimes don't have to be finalized - discs do.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 141
Registered: Mar-06
Thanks David, that did it.

Linda, sorry I called you Liz.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 142
Registered: Mar-06
Linda, your post got me thinking. I have another player which is a Toshiba. I tried one of my unfinalized discs in it and it won't read it. So I finalized one of my -RW discs and am now using that player with one of my two D-R4's to take what I want from the finalized disc while I'm using the other D-R4 to continue to record raw material to sort thru later.

The only drawback would seem to be if continual unfinalizing shortens the life of the -RW disc, as opposed to never finalizing it and just deleting titles instead.

???

 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3264
Registered: Jul-04
Finalizing and unfinalizing shouldn't hurt the discs, I do it all the time. It's reformatting instead of just deleting that may shorten disc life. I don't know if that's true of RWs or not, it may just be RAM.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 143
Registered: Mar-06
Thanks David. I like hearing that.

It's all going smoothly now.

Looks like the process to "erase" these -RW discs is this:

Using Quick Menu, go thru the unfinalizing process. Then using EasyNav, go back and delete the "title" that remains. If you don't delete that "title" (which looks like blank information on the EasyNav screen) then when you check "disc information," you'll see that the disc appears full w/ no available space to record on.

If ya go to EasyNav before unfinalizing, the option to delete titles is disabled and so you can't delete any titles.

At least, that's how it was with me.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3265
Registered: Jul-04
You can't delete anything until it's unfinalized. You can record an hour or however long you want, finalize the disc so you can watch it, then unfinalize it and keep recording on it. You can repeat that until the disc is full. If you select no menu when you finalize, the process will take less time. I make menus with Rs but not RWs since they are just going to be reused anyway.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 144
Registered: Mar-06
Okay, now I think I see how it works.

You unfinalize the disc, then you go to EasyNav and delete all titles. Or maybe only delete that last one? I dunno about that -- does deleting the last title free up all the space on the disc?

Bottom line is to go back to Quick Menu and check Disc Information and make sure you have the full disc space freed up to re-record on.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 145
Registered: Mar-06
Nope, deleting the last title only doesn't do it. Ya have to delete all titles (until it says "No Title" in EasyNav and the "Delete Title" option is disabled)
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3269
Registered: Jul-04
Deleting the last title doesn't free all the space on the disc, but it will free however long the title is. If the last title is 30 minutes and you delete it, you'll add 30 minutes to whatever was left on the disc. If you want the full 2 hours, all titles have to be deleted.
 

New member
Username: Lissylee

Post Number: 1
Registered: Jan-07
Hi~I'm a newbie here. I'm just wondering if anyone has had any experience with the ct-100? Most of the talk is about the ct-200, but will this work as well. Thanks!
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 146
Registered: Mar-06
You asked 2 questions. My answers are "no" (at least as far as my own experience) and "no."

As to the 2nd "no," I'd say don't waste your money on the 100. It's a "first generation" stabilizer and will not handle later copyright protections. So it will work for older tapes and DVDs, but not for the newer ones, which have "later generation" protection.

I DO have the CT-200 and I've not yet found anything it won't handle. Someday it will most probably be "outdated," but apparently not yet.

Just get the 200 and don't waste your time and money on the 100.

Unless somebody else knows better and jumps in here.
 

New member
Username: Lissylee

Post Number: 2
Registered: Jan-07
Thanks, TMax! I'll stick with the 200.
 

Gold Member
Username: Edster922

Abubala, Ababala The Occupation

Post Number: 4622
Registered: Mar-05
The CT-200 seems to have vanished, can't find it anywhere online!
 

Silver Member
Username: Rysa3

Houston, Texas

Post Number: 112
Registered: Nov-06
Eddie- Have you returned?
 

Bronze Member
Username: Lthompson

Alabama

Post Number: 54
Registered: May-06
Edster, I found 2 listed on Ebay the item numbers are.
290083050128 and 270089338518
Linda
 

Gold Member
Username: Edster922

Abubala, Ababala The Occupation

Post Number: 4623
Registered: Mar-05
hi Marc,

no I am still in NM, just got a little free time and some Internet access this week. : )

Hoping to get a chance for a week or two in Houston in April though, will give you a yell if/when I do.
 

Gold Member
Username: Edster922

Abubala, Ababala The Occupation

Post Number: 4624
Registered: Mar-05
thanks Linda, I'll keep an eye on them.

wish it were still available at the usual places though...did Sima get sued or something?
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 147
Registered: Mar-06
Edster922 - You are correct that the CT-200 seems to have "disappeared." I presume you already know, but it's no longer listed as a product at the Sima site.

I did see it listed on Amazon dot com (used) as "Sima/First Alert" -

http://www.amazon.com/Sima-First-Alert-Digital-Enhancer/dp/B000AEFVVE

so maybe that division or product was sold to First Alert (?)

Anyway, it'll still be around on ebay, I'm sure.

I probably should have gotten a spare when I had the chance.
 

Gold Member
Username: Edster922

Abubala, Ababala The Occupation

Post Number: 4625
Registered: Mar-05
thanks TMax, I'll try looking under First Alert too.

There are a few on eBay but they are being snapped up fast!

I find it hard to believe that Sima would've stopped making this for any reason other than legal pressure.

Am looking into the DiMax device which seems to be made in Israel (or more likely, in China and then shipped from Israel) but don't find as many confirmed good reviews as the Sima, which I used to own and was very happy with.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 148
Registered: Mar-06
Ya, I am very happy with my CT-200, which is why I now wish I'd gotten a 2nd one. I hope this one never quits on me!

If you look at the reviews for it @ that Amazon dot com link I posted, you'll see one guy who said it's crap. I'm convinced that there are people out there who go around giving those kind of reviews for stuff just to get the overall rating down. I see it all the time and it always sounds to me like the guy never owned the item at all. He just can't stand seeing something get a high rating, so he's gotta throw in his low rating just to screw up the overall number.

People sure are "funny" like that. I guess it makes them feel important or something.

Maybe the guy did get a bad one, but gee, don'tcha think maybe he'd acknowledge that possibility if that really were the case and he really was legit?

I'm very happy with mine, and so is everybody else who really owns one.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jchurch43

Denver, Colorado USA

Post Number: 90
Registered: May-06
I've had my DiMax for about 6 months. I wouldn't trade it for anything. I haven't found anything it won't decode.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 149
Registered: Mar-06
One quick note on the D-R4 that made me a little crazy last night. The input selection on the D-R4 is made via the remote; namely, there's an "input select" button on the remote. You press that button and the input changes from L-1 to L-2 to (whatever the next one is), then back to L-1 again. Well, that button is located right above the "menu" button and I guess I accidentally hit the input button by mistake without realizing it. As a result, I was unable to record anything and I couldn't figure out why. I checked the cables, the GoDVD stabilizer, yada yada yada until I finally realized what the problem was. And all this happened just as I was getting ready to record a television program, so there was a time constraint that had me crazy.

So be careful with that darn button. I think it's a real bad idea to have that button on the remote; they should have designed it so's you select the input via one of the setup modes. But that's the way it is, so there ya go.

Also note that whenever you power up the unit, it displays "On" followed by "L-1" (or "L-2" or whatever input is selected), so at least you can see which input is set when you turn it on. If you don't have the correct input selected, you're not going to record anything and you won't know until you go to play back what you think you've recorded.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3401
Registered: Jul-04
Unfortunately, the Toshiba will record with no signal present. Some recorders won't record unless there's a signal, some will.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 150
Registered: Mar-06
FYI, Supermediastore is having a sale on the 200 pack of TY discs that I previously purchased. Use code tai20poff to get 20% off for a sale price of $37.99. The coupon expires 5/24, so don't wait to use it. Here's the specifics on the discs -

Taiyo Yuden 4.7GB 8X DV-001-0855
DVD-R Media Silver
Thermal Lacquer (Value Line) 200 Pack in Tape Wrap

Now, this is not free shipping, so the coupon basically offsets the shipping charge for me ($11.50) which means I end up paying $49.49. That's 51 cents less than I paid last time when they were on sale for $50 w/ free ground shipping.

I've used 100+ of these discs and have not yet had a problem. So for a quarter each, ya can't beat 'em. At least, not for use with the D-R4.

Since I recently purchased 500 more paper sleeves on sale at a great price, I figure I should grab 200 more discs now at this price. I originally purchased just 100 paper sleeves, so I needed another 100 since I'm now into my 2nd 100 discs. I didn't need 500, but now I do!!

I highly recommend these discs. Thanks again to David for turning me on to them.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3416
Registered: Jul-04
Shop4Tech has 10% off sales all the time, I get those discs for around $17/100 with free shipping after the 10% off code and Google checkout, another $10 off. The Google checkout is only good the first time, but you can use the first time on as many e-mails as hou have, I've used it with half a dozen different e-mails and got the $10 off on all of them.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 151
Registered: Mar-06
Ya know, I WAS going to say that if you know of a better deal, let me know about it.

Guess I didn't even have to ask, huh?

$34.00 for 200 discs sounds better than $49.49 to me, so I went ahead and canceled my Supermediastore order. I'll get them at Shop4Tech next time the deal comes around. I don't need the discs right now, so there's time.

Thanks again, David. You da man!
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3417
Registered: Jul-04
I'll post the 10% off code here next time they send one. The last one ended May 15. There's a holiday coming, so they may have another sale soon. To get them for that $17/100, they have to be bought 100 at a time, not 200. But just sign up for a few free e-mail addresses, and you can use each one to order 100 discs. I've used Hotmail, Google, AOL, Yahoo, and my service provider e-mail. There's other free e-mail services too. I also used another family member's few e-mail addresses.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 152
Registered: Mar-06
Thanks in advance for the code.

I had a little trouble canceling my order with Supermedia store (via email) because they claimed they had already processed it. So I called the 800# and spoke to someone who canceled it right away and refunded my payment right away (at my request). If you ever want to cancel an order with them, CALL! Also, I called twice and was assured both times that she'd already sent a confirming email on the cancellation, but I never received either email. I only felt confident when I got my email from Paypal (right away) on the refund -- which I actually received while still on the phone with the Supermediastore gurl (!!).

I think this is the outfit I had trouble with b4 and had to go to meritline to get my stuff. But I'd have to check back to be sure.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3418
Registered: Jul-04
It was probably Meritline you had the trouble with. They like to sell stuff they don't actually have in stock. I've never had Supermediastore do that.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3429
Registered: Jul-04
I got a Shop4Tech 10% off coupon today, the code is ss10. I don't see the $10 off for first time Google users anymore though.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 153
Registered: Mar-06
Ya, I got mine today too. I guess I had signed up for their email specials awhile ago and forgotten that I'd done it. Anyway, I got the same code (SS10). I'll go sniff around on the site and see what I might want to get. I've still got plenty of TY discs left but I'm always up for a good deal on 'em.


Thanks again for the heads up on the coupon.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 14
Registered: Jun-06
I'm baaaaaaaack,
I have been copying vhs to dvd for some time now, suddenly I can't get completely through one movie without it stopping or going blank, sometimes it picks back up but mostly just no pix or sound. I'm usually about 1/2 way through the video when it quits. I unplug the stablizer everytime I finish, I even unplug the transformer. Could my stablizer be going bad? I hope not, the prices of them have gone over a $100 each on ebay. What's a girl to do? Still have many movies to copy. Help!!!!!!!
 

Bronze Member
Username: Lthompson

Alabama

Post Number: 55
Registered: May-06
JoAnne you might try putting a fan on the machines as you are using them. I had trouble last summer when the weather got so hot. And dont stack the machines. I usually do one movie then let it cool for a while.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 15
Registered: Jun-06
I tried letting it cool, but have not tried the fan approach. Do you imagine the humidity is causing the problem? I am running the air conditioner most of the time, except at night. I live in Iowa and the heat is horrible during the day as is the humidity right now. I don't have the machines stacked, but the television sits atop the dvr, could that be a problem? I can't even finish one movie with out a problem so will try the fan.

Thanks Linda
 

Bronze Member
Username: Lthompson

Alabama

Post Number: 56
Registered: May-06
If I remember correctly that is the problem that I had last summer in July. David had mentioned keeping them cool, or at least not stacking any of them, so it might be the problem. I bought a 6 inch fan and turned it on the DVR to keep it cool. I can't recall any problems after that. If there is any way I think I would try moving the TV and using a fan. David would know more about this
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 16
Registered: Jun-06
Thanks Linda

I will unstack the dvr and tv, and use the fan, I thought it might be a problem, but has worked for so long without any trouble that I couldn't imagine it causing this problem.

JoAnne
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3430
Registered: Jul-04
Make sure the exhaust fan in the back of the recorder isn't blocked.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 17
Registered: Jun-06
Hi David
The exhaust fan is not blocked. Thanks for another option to look for though.

JoAnne
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3431
Registered: Jul-04
What brand of recorder are you using? What brand discs?
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 154
Registered: Mar-06
David, I just ordered another 200 TY discs at shop4tech using the coupon. So it comes out to $50.40 for the 200 discs, or 25 cents apiece. This is what I paid for my original batch which was, indeed, from supermediastore and not meritline. I originally ordered them from Meritline but, as you correctly noted (they tend to do), they were out of stock (!!) so I canceled that order.

Do you have any recommendation on the -RW discs that Shop4tech has? I bought 10 Verbatim discs on your prior recommendation and I should have bought more because the sale price was good at the time. Shop4tech doesn't carry them. They have Leda, Optodisc, Ritek and "branded bulk by TDK." The Riteks are "Ridata DVD-RW 6X Full Logo Bulk" and don't say that they are 4.7G (like the others do) so I'm wondering if they are.

The prices are pretty good (especially w/ the coupon) and they are all free shipping, but do you have any opinion on these?

Thanks
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3432
Registered: Jul-04
If you don't need them in cases, you can get Verbatim 15/$13.21 shipped if you use Google checkout at Buy.com.
http://www.buy.com/prod/verbatim-dvd-rw-15pk-4-7-gb-storage-media/q/loc/101/1037 0851.html

If you want cases, you can get 10/$11.96 shipped with Google.
http://www.buy.com/prod/verbatim-dvd-rw-4-7gb-2x-branded-10pk-jewel-case-94918/q /loc/101/10364883.html

I've never tried any others. Stay away from Ritek and I don't think TDK is any better these days. Those links and Google checkout should be as cheap as Shop4Tech.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 155
Registered: Mar-06
Thanks again, David. I don't need cases. I'm "off" cases (take up too much space) except to use for transporting discs someplace (taking them on vacation, lending to a friend, etc). In fact, the 10 Verbatim -RW discs I bought came w/ cases and I proceeded to take them out of the cases and keep them in paper sleeves instead. I think I paid something like $1.19 each for the discs (w/ cases). So since I don't want cases anymore, your prices beat that.

I'll go get some.

Thanks again.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 156
Registered: Mar-06
David -

I just ordered the Verbatim 15/$13.21 at Buy.com per your advise. Ya can't beat 88 cents apiece for them. that gives me 25 of these puppies now. That should do me fine. In fact, my original 10 would be enough if I wasn't so lazy that I keep neglecting to transfer my stuff to permanent disc and thus clear my discs for re-use.

As to my earlier TY disc order from Shop4tech, Supermediastore sent me an email this morning which led me to this link of possible interest -

http://www.supermediastore.com/taiyo-yuden-how-to-tell-fake-or-real.html

BTW, the email also included a sale on a 200 spindle pack of Verbatim 4X DVD-R for $49.99 shipped.

Do you have any experience with these?

I think I'm set for blank discs for now, but that seems like a pretty good deal if they are as good as the TY's.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 18
Registered: Jun-06
Hi David

My recorder is a Panasonic dual vhs and dvd recorder, and the discs are Verbatim. These are the same as I have been using all along.

JoAnne
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3433
Registered: Jul-04
Did the discs come from Sams Club? There's been posts about defective Verbatim discs sold at Sams Club in other forums lately. Combos are more prone to heat problems than seperates.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 19
Registered: Jun-06
Thanks David

No the discs did not come from Sam's Club. I wonder why I did not have any problem for over a year, and now it starts. Oh well, I am unstacking my tv and dvr, and buying a small fan to help keep it cool. We'll see what happens.

JoAnne
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3434
Registered: Jul-04
There may just be something wrong with the recorder. If you have any tapes that aren't copy protected, take out the stabilizer and see if it works without it. That should tell you if it's the stabilizer or the recorder. If you're using a seperate VHS, it could be that too.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 157
Registered: Mar-06
Wow! My Verbatim -RW discs from Buy.com (15/$13.21) arrived just a bit ago. That was really FAST. I just ordered them yesterday morning.

How did they do that?????

Anyway, these are in the 15-pack spindle (I like that) and are different than my other ones. These are "DataLife" and those are "DataLifePlus." I don't know what the difference is but I tried one already and it worked fine. I imagine the others claim to have longer life but I doubt I'll use any of them enough for that to be a factor.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3435
Registered: Jul-04
I don't know what the difference between DataLife and DataLifePlus is. I wouldn't be surprised if you used a PC burner and checked the media code and they were the same. I've been using the Verbatim Videoguard RWs lately. My RWs always seem to get dusty and dirty in no time, then cleaning them scratches them. The Videoguard discs are supposed to be 40x plus more scratch resistant, not hardly. They do seem to be a little more scratch resistant than the regular discs though. I've always been happy with Buy.com. If they don't have something in stock, it'll say on the website. They aren't like Meritline, selling stuff they don't have and not letting you know they don't have it.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 158
Registered: Mar-06
JoAnne -

I just read over your post again (1st one on Monday) and have some thoughts:

If it's the stabilizer, then I would think that your recorder would give you the "copy protected" message when the stabilizer poops out (from heat or whatever). That would then trigger the recorder to quit recording. You know what I mean. Try recording a copy protected tape w/o the stabilizer and you'll see what I mean. You get a few seconds of recording, then the message and the recorder stops recording.

You seem to be saying that the "recording" continues without any message or interruption, but that you get a blank disc after it's half done (or so). So I agree with David that it could be your source VCR (it's not putting out the signal after awhile) or your DVR (after awhile, it's not recording the signal it's getting from the source player).

But it doesn't sound like it's your stabilizer.

It could be, but I tend to doubt it.

You'll just have to keep troubleshooting it to find the problem. Fiddle around with things but change only ONE thing at a time, so you know that's it.

Also, I suggest you might try using -RW discs until you think you've got the problem licked. I'd try transferring the tapes to -RW disc and if you get a successful transfer, then transfer from the -RW disc to the -R disc using any DVD player as the source to play the -RW disc.

You probably don't need any more coasters over at your place.

I'm doing quite a bit of recording on the -RW discs (which is why I bought some more of them) and then transferring what I want to keep to -R discs.

Poor man's TiVo. Kind of.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3436
Registered: Jul-04
If you are transfering from RW to R, you really should use a PC burner. There's no loss in quality and they last a lot longer than a DVD recorder.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 20
Registered: Jun-06
Thanks TMax

I think you are right I should use the RW as I do have enough shiny frizbees. My daycare kids love them though.

I have not been able to start the troubleshooting process yet but will be doing so this weekend.

You guys are the best. I will let you know what I find out. Hopefully its not the dvr or stablizer.

Thanks again.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 21
Registered: Jun-06
Ok, I'll try this again, my previous message went into the wild blue yonder somewhere.

I spent the weekend troubleshooting this problem. Still no solution. I unstacked the tv and dvr, set the fan to cool things. and I was able to copy a non-copyrighted tape to dvd using the dvr only. So I think the dvr is fine.
I tried copying a copyright protected tape and again it stopped this time only 17 minutes into the movie. So I swapped vcrs, was able to copying for 45 min before it stopped.
When it stops the picture on the tv goes blank, and the dvr does not record anything. But when I stop the record process, the tape is still playing in the vcr but can only hear the audio, no video. So I don't think the vcr is the problem, since it is happening on both vcrs.

Now the only thing I have not changed is the tv, I may try that next time but it works to play movies and can record from it, so doesn't sound like it would be the tv either.

I wonder if I may be getting an electronic spike occasionally since it happens at different times during the record process. What do you guys think, any more ideas. I've run out of ideas, and if it is an electronic spike, how can that be stopped?

By the way, I am using an RW now until I get this resolved.

Thanks again for all your help

JoAnne
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3440
Registered: Jul-04
Unless you live in an old house with poor wiring, electricity shouldn't be a problem. Is there an air conditioner or refrigerator on the same breaker? Did you disconnect the stabilizer to do the non-protected tape?
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jchurch43

Denver, Colorado USA

Post Number: 91
Registered: May-06
JoAnne, I had the same problem some time back. I found I had a video cable (the one with the yellow end) that was overheating. It drove me crazy because it would happen at different times of the recording. I just happened to touch the cable while checking the connections and noticed it was very, very warm. I replaced the cable and haven't had the problem since. It is certainly worth checking. A cable is cheaper than a stabilizer.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 159
Registered: Mar-06
That's a great thought that James had. Try other cables first. The TV shouldn't have anything to do with this, so I wouldn't worry about that.

I said previously that it didn't sound like your stabilizer was bad but it could be that it is overheating. I say that because your problem happened after 17 minutes and then 45 minutes. But if it's the stabilizer, it's not that it's not filtering out the copy protection or your DVR would give the error message and stop the recording process. Your DVR wouldn't continue recording blank information (that IS what's happening, right?) if the stabilizer wasn't still working to filter out the copy-protection signal. So it must still be doing that okay.

So if it's the stabilizer, it must be killing the video signal entirely. Soooooo, try copying a non-copyprotected tape WITH the stabilizer in the line (as you would do with a copy-protected tape). See if you get the same blank result at some point.

I think you've already done a non-copyprotected tape WITHOUT the stabilizer, correct? That seems to be what you're saying. If you HAVE already done that, then it would seem that you've confired that it's not your DVD source player OR your DVR (assuming you can copy a tape completely when you don't use the stabilizer at all).

If it IS your stabilizer, it sounds like it's failing because it's getting too hot. Try moving it away from the equipment and blowing over it with the fan, etc. Do whatever you can think of to keep it cool (but avoid getting it wet, of course).

How about setting it on one of those plastic liquid-filled thingies that you put in your freezer until they are frozen (and then put into your cooler to keep things cool)? Get one of those well chilled (frozen), then put an envelope on top of it (to keep the stabilizer dry) and then put the stabilizer on the envelope. That might chill it TOO much, but I think not.

Something like that. Just don't let any water or moisture get into the thing.

You're not going to ruin it by chilling it a bit (I don't think), but lower temperature does have an effect on electrical resistance and thus you can ruin electrical equipment by running it at TOO cold a temp (lower temp = less resistance = higher voltage to some components = something burning out). Since these things do run hot, I can't imagine chilling it down a bit as per my suggestion would cause the thing any kind of serious problem because the heat it generates in use is going to keep it from getting supercooled.

Try cooling it with the fan first and see if that gives you a longer recording session before it craps out. Maybe try putting the freezer thingie between the fan and the stabilizer so that the fan is blowing the cold air from the thingie onto the stabilizer. Then as a last resort, set it onto the thingie as per my suggestion.

If you see any improvement by cooling it, then you'll pretty much know that the problem is the stabilizer getting too hot.

I think you're getting close.

Maybe it IS a cable. Try that first for sure.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Lthompson

Alabama

Post Number: 57
Registered: May-06
JoAnne I still think its the hot weather and the DVR, try the fan blowing on it,I had this problem last summer until I got my little desk fan. I would think if its the stablizer going out that you would get the message on the screen as soon as it did. I cant see anything about the stablizer to overheat. Maybe a cord but thats about all there is to it.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 22
Registered: Jun-06
Wow, I never even thought about the cables becoming hot. I will check that out this weekend.

I tried the fan when troubleshooting last weekend, did not seem to change anything.

Yes, the dvr continues to record blank video and no audio at the point the tv screen goes blank.

The stablizer was not used when I copied the non protected tape, so I will try taping from the external vcr to the dvr without the stablizer connected to see if that works. I know if I use a protected tape it gives me that 'message' when not using the stablizer.

I will replace the cables first, I have other cables, then try the cooling process if new cables doesn't help. Thing is nothing seems to be that warm when I touch it but will check the cables.

Thanks again for these new suggestions. Will let you know what happens. Boy, what a process.

JoAnne
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3441
Registered: Jul-04
If you took the stabilizer out when it worked, then one of the cables you use with the stabilizer that you didn't use without it is bad, or the stabilizer is bad. If the stabilizer gets hot, try using it with the cover off. My Dish Network satellite receiver gets so hot, I just leave the cover off. If I don't it has video problems from overheating.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 160
Registered: Mar-06
JoAnne -

You said "the dvr continues to record blank video and no audio at the point the tv screen goes blank."

The stabilizer has no effect on the audio one way or the other. If you lose audio, then it's either the source player or the dvr (or an audio cable). If you're losing the video and audio at the same time, then it's not likely that the video problem is your stabilizer. As I said, the stabilizer is not involved in the audio at all; so if you're losing audio, it's the player or the recorder (or an audio cable).

If you have the same problem using a different source player, then it's your dvr.

But you said earlier that "I was able to copy a non-copyrighted tape to dvd using the dvr only. So I think the dvr is fine."

That would seem to indicate that it's NOT your dvr. But if you have the problem using your combo's tape player as the source, and also when you use a separate VCR, then I'd suspect your DVR.

Since you're losing both audio and video, I don't think it is a cable problem. It would have to be two bad cables (video and audio).

David said "If you took the stabilizer out when it worked, then one of the cables you use with the stabilizer that you didn't use without it is bad, or the stabilizer is bad."

I think that's consistent with what I'm going to say now, which is:

After you were "able to copy the non-copyrighted tape to dvd using the dvr only" (I assume you mean without the stabilizer), you should have then tried copying that tape WITH the stabilizer. If you got the problem when you were using the stabilizer, then the problem would likely be either the stabilzer or that one yellow cable you use with the stabilizer.

Either that or it IS a bad player or dvr and you just happened to get lucky when you were able to copy the tape without the stabilizer (which isn't very likely). Trying that again (without the stabilizer) would probably confirm it (you'd probably see the problem again because I doubt you'd be lucky twice in a row).

When you're troubleshooting a problem, you have to do things stepwise so that you narrow things down and zero in on the problem. If you jump around changing this and that in a haphazard fashion, you'll go crazy and just waste your time.

At this point, I doubt it's your stabilizer. Had I known that you were losing both video and audio at the same time (maybe you mentioned that and I missed it), I would have steered you away from the stabilizer at the outset.

Because since the stabilizer isn't involved in the audio part of things at all, it cannot be the cause of your audio loss. And since both the audio and video are going out at the same time, it's HIGHLY unlikely that you have a stabilizer problem that just happens to pop up at the exact same moment as your audio problem (which HAS to be a problem totally unrelated to the stabilizer).

I'm guessing that it's your dvr and that it's just getting too hot. If I'm right, then you should see the problem regardless of what VCR player you are using as the source, especially if you are using separate VCR players (not the combo's VCR player).

One more point on that: If you use your combo's player, then you're making the unit work harder and also running "more of it" than if you use a separate VCR player as the source. Thus, using your combo's tape player would probably cause your DVR to run hotter because the whole unit would run hotter.

Maybe that's why you were able to copy that non-copywrited tape? You said "I was able to copy a non-copyrighted tape to dvd using the dvr only." Did you mean you were using a separate VCR as the source (rather than your combo's player)? I'm just not sure what you meant by "using the dvr only."

David, thanks for the tip on removing covers. My Voom OTA receivers run quite hot (even when they're not turned on) and I think I may now take the covers off them during the hot weather this summer.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3444
Registered: Jul-04
I just bought one of those Voom receivers on ebay. Do they get all digital channels or just the HD ones? I haven't got it yet. Hopefully they get all digital channels. There's quite a few digital channels in my area that aren't HD.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 161
Registered: Mar-06
David -

The Voom box will receive all digital channels, not just the HD ones. I hope yours has the OTA tuner, the correct software, and was activated and never deactivated. If you don't have the relevant websites on all of this, I can give them to you. But I'm guessing you already know all about it. A lot of the Vooms on ebay list those websites in their auctions (there are 2 main sites).

I have two Voom boxes. They work great although they are probably "2nd generation" tuners. The latest ATSC tuners out there are probably 6th generation and thus do a much better job in pulling in signals, etc., but my Vooms do very well for me. I'm in central NJ and pulling in all of the Philly channels despite the fact that they are 50+ miles away.

The only issue I have with the Vooms is in regard to one PBS station in Bethlehem, PA. They have 3 channels and my Vooms will not "discriminate" between them properly. I get the main channel just fine. The 2nd channel is different programming but I get the same programming as the main channel. The 3rd channel is different programming and I get "no signal" on that channel (despite the fact that I AM getting the signal and thus locked that channel in).

Other than that one issue, I'm a happy camper. I paid ~$60 and ~$45 for my boxes (including shipping). If you go out and buy a digital tuner retail you're going to pay something like $200-$500 or more. Which is why I went for the Vooms. I got my first one in January. Prior to that I knew nothing about digital OTA. Now I'm getting all the Philly stations and some of the NYC stations. I'm closer to NYC but I'm at the base of a ridge which is partially blocking me from NYC signals. I have a clear shot to Philly, so I mainly watch those stations. Here's a link to a forum site that's helpful. You can find your local OTA thread there -

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=453241

Combining my Voom(s) w/ my D-R4(s) and -RW discs gives me DVD quality recordings of broadcast programs for free. Thus I have the Cream reunion concert (for example) for free in DVD quality video and audio.

Rock on.

Feel free to email me if you have any questions on the Voom, antennas, etc. nowan@Safe-mail.net

P.S. My shop4tech order of 200 TY discs arrived a week after placing the order, which is good service. So I'm now all set to crank out many more DVDs @ 25 cents each as long as my Vooms and D-R4s keep on trucking.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 162
Registered: Mar-06
PPS on my long post to JoAnne above (which I'm re-reading now with a fresh mind) -

If I've mistated something -- or just got something wrong -- someone please jump in and correct me. I won't be offended.

Sadly, I'm not perfect.

Yet.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 163
Registered: Mar-06
I gotta get off this site and get some work done.

However ......

I re-read your post above, JoAnne, and you said:

"I tried copying a copyright protected tape and again it stopped this time only 17 minutes into the movie. So I swapped vcrs, was able to copying for 45 min before it stopped.
When it stops the picture on the tv goes blank, and the dvr does not record anything. But when I stop the record process, the tape is still playing in the vcr but can only hear the audio, no video. So I don't think the vcr is the problem, since it is happening on both vcrs."

Taking what you said there together with what you told us in your later post, I THINK what you're saying is that at 17 minutes and 45 minutes, the recording of both audio and video onto your DVD disc quit. (meaning you confirmed that later when you took a look at what got recorded onto the disc).

And as you observed the process while it was happening (when the problem occurred), you saw the video on your TV go blank, but you were still able to hear the audio.

If all that is true, then I think the problem has to be your DVR. It's not the source VCR because it happened with two different VCRs. It's not a cable problem because it's both audio and video. It's not a stabilizer problem because the stabilizer affects video only and cannot affect audio.

At this point, it sounds to me like Liz is correct and it's your DVR that's the problem and it's most likely due to the fact that it's just overheating.

You probably could have confirmed that it wasn't the stabilizer if you had taken that out of the mix after you made those two recordings (that bombed out @ 17 & 45 minutes) and switched to a non-copywrite source tape and tried it again. You probably would have gotten the same problem again at some point prior to the end of the 2-hour recording (I'm guessing).

That's what I mean by troubleshooting in a stepwise fashion to eliminate things. Had you done that, you would have eliminated the stabilizer as the source of the problem.

But not to worry since I think we now know it's not the stabilizer anyway.

One more bit of advice from a long-time troubleshooter with a bit of a short fuse at times:

Don't overdo it all at once. If you feel yourself getting frustrated because you don't think you're getting anywhere, just stop. Quit working on it and come back to it tomorrow.

Otherwise, you might end up launching it out the window -- as some folks have been known to do.

You don't need to fix it today. It can wait till tomorrow.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3445
Registered: Jul-04
The Voom receiver came today. Are you using yours with a 4:3 TV? No matter how I set the picture shape it always looks the same, everything streched vertically, and bars on the sides on 4:3 material.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 164
Registered: Mar-06
David -

No, I do not have a HDTV. I'm using mine with a regular old NTSC TV. The picture you describe is simply a function of the broadcast (assuming you're looking at a broadcast picture). Assuming you've got it all set up and scanned local channels in and are receiving digital TV, what you're seeing is simply the station's SD broadcast. Some stations broadcast their SD like that (a LOT of commercials are broadcast like that) and other stations broadcast their SD so that you get a normal picture. It fills the screen and there's no distortion, but it's not hi def (HD).

Even some hi def broadcasts come thru with the bars on the side and the stretched picture, but that's usually a screw-up on the station's part. That Bethlehem PBS station I referred to previously does that sometimes. Their engineers are a little shakey, it seems.

I have "Picture Format" set to "Stretch" and "Squeeze" (which I think are default settings) and Output Resolution set to 1080i

Even on an old NTSC TV, the hi def broadcasts are pretty impressive as far as the picture quality goes. I can see a difference and so say most folks.

That picture you describe made me crazy when I was a newbie and I spent some considerable posting time on the forum about it. None of those guys simply told me what the story was. Maybe they were kidding the new guy.

Just keep watching and switching around to different stations and you'll see a full-screen broadcast pretty soon. And a HD broadcast as well.

I use the Zap2it site for my TV schedule. They finally got their act together (until they change it again) and now they have all the HD broadcasts delineated in the schedule. Tune to one of those and you'll see the difference.

Pretty much all of the sports broadcasts are in HD now. Football is pretty impressive and golf is awesome in HD. I'm sure it's REALLY awesome on a HDTV. I might pick one up once they drop the prices on the older sets that don't have an integral tuner. All TVs manufactured this year and onward have to have an integral tuner, so I'm hoping there's some left-over non-tuner jobs that go on the cheap.

The changeover date to all digital is still February 2009 as far as I know. So if you are an OTA (non-cable or satellite) guy like me, it's good to get things in place before your analog signal goes dead in ~ 1.5 years (if they don't extend the deadline again).

I didn't even know about all this until last January. But I'm all set now. And it looks to me like the broadcasters are really serious about their free OTA signals. If they keep putting 'em out, I'll keep watching 'em. It does seem that's their intention.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3446
Registered: Jul-04
I have a 16:9 HDTV. This was for someone else with a 4:3 TV. I guess I'll have to buy one of the Hisense receivers on ebay. That stretched partial picture has to go. Oh well, I should have done some research before I bought the Zoom receiver. No wonder they went bankrupt when they can't even put a 4:3/16:9 selection that any $20 DVD player has on their satellite receivers.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jchurch43

Denver, Colorado USA

Post Number: 92
Registered: May-06
JoAnne,

I'm pretty sure you already thought of this, but, just in case you overlooked it, have you tried the whole troubleshooting gambit with a different vhs tape? Just a thought. It is possible it could be the tape and not the equipment.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 23
Registered: Jun-06
I am becoming really frustrated with this problem!! Yes James, I have tried several vhs tapes. I have attempted to watch a movie, not record it, and it stopped about 30 min in. Now I still had my equipment setup to record but did not push the record button.

Ok, now I can record directly from the combo vhs drive to the combo dvd drive with no problem, ie a non-copyprotected vhs tape. So does that sound like a problem with the dvr overheating. Anyway,
I have a fan blowing on the dvr when attempting to record. This does not seem to help at all when recording from an external vhs player.

I am going to buy a better surge suppressor as I still think it has something to do with the AC kicking on. It seems coincidental but twice the AC kicked in when the tv went blank during viewing and once when recording. These are the only times I paid any attention to this though. Do you think a better surge suppressor will help if this is the problem?

JoAnne
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3458
Registered: Jul-04
What you need to do is get the AC or the recording equipment on a different circuit breaker. I doubt a surge protector will make any difference.

When you say the movie stopped 30 minutes into it, the VCR stopped? Or the VCR was still playing but nothing was coming through?

The recorder would run hotter when the VHS and DVD were both being used than when the DVD only was being used. So no, it doesn't sound like an over heating problem.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 24
Registered: Jun-06
Actually my AC is not on the same circuit breaker that's why I thought a surge suppressor would help. It may have only been a coincidence. David, the VCR is still playing but the TV goes blank even when only viewing but works fine when playing and recording from combo vhs to combo dvr.
Don't worry TMax, I not the type to throw things, and I just walk away when getting frustrated.
I am going to move this whole setup to another area of the house to see if it makes a difference. Will let you know if it helps!!

Thanks again for all your help.
JoAnne
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 25
Registered: Jun-06
PS: Just a few other notes to let you know that I have checked and re-checked some of these options.

I know this has to be something simple.

None of the cables are hot or even warm not even the stabilizer. Although it is a little warmer than the others but definitely not hot. The transformer plug gets a little warm but I unplug it after each recording or recording attempt so it can cool down just in case.

JoAnne
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3459
Registered: Jul-04
If the AC isn't on the same breaker, there shouldn't be a problem, unless you have poor voltage where you are.

I'd try this, take the stabilizer out and try playing a copy protected movie through the recorder. If it plays fine, then it's either the stabilizer or a cable. Cables can be bad without getting hot. I've never had one get hot. If you have an ohm tester, you can check the cables with that. They should only have a few ohms of resistance and shouldn't change when you wiggle them around.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 165
Registered: Mar-06
JoAnne -

I just finished a VERY long post, which I now won't post because I kinda figured some things out in writing it, so it's really largely irrelevant.

Point being, I'll cull some of the stuff from that one and put it in this one.

I agree with David's approach. It sounds like your stabilizer (or maybe a cable) is the culprit. If you are playing your video feed THROUGH the stabilizer, and you lose video (which you say you are), then it has to be the stabilizer or a cable or the VCR or the TV. I doubt it's anything other than the stabilizer.

If you set it all up exactly the same way (as when you "had my equipment setup to record but did not push the record button") but WITHOUT the stabilizer, and you DON'T lose video, then it's likely the stabilizer that's the problem (or a cable, and likely the lone yellow cable you use with the stabilizer). I believe this is what David is suggesting you do now.

In any event, to focus on whether your stabilizer is the problem, I'd do as David suggests.

I'd also then "put this stabilizer thru its paces" by using it to view tapes. You can try both copy protected tapes and non-copy protected tapes and see if there's any difference, but you want to be sure the video signal has to go through the stabilizer (it's hooked up "in line").

You seem to have confirmed it's probably the stabilizer because you said the video bombed out after 30 minutes and you WERE using the stabilizer "in line" on that attempt. You weren't recording, but you were viewing.

It could have been a cable (or the VCR or the TV), but I think likely the stabilizer. I say that because it worked for 30 minutes and then failed. A cable woudln't likely do that. And I doubt its either your VCR or TV. It sounds like the stabilizer is getting too hot and then "bombing out." The good news is that it works again after it cools off. It's not dead (yet).

Now, what I DON'T know is whether a bad stabilzer would also kill the video signal on a non-copyprotected tape. Maybe it would, and maybe it wouldn't. You may just find out if you fiddle with this long enough. But it really doesn't matter much unless you want to use it with non-copyprotected tapes too.

So, I recommend that you repeat your first experiment above and just view some copyprotected tapes through the stabilizer. If it repeatedly fails, then it's likely the stabilizer (or a cable, but much more likely the stabilizer overheating).

THEN, if you do as David suggests (take the stabilizer out of the line and changing nothing else) and JUST VIEW some copyprotected tapes, and you DON'T lose video, then it almost certainly is the stabilizer (or a cable, but much more likely the stabilizer simply overheating).

At that point, I'd be betting on the stabilizer rather than the cable.

If you can confirm that it's the stabilizer that's the problem, THEN you can focus on whether you can still use this one -- perhaps by "packing it in ice" to keep it cool. As I said, it's obviously not permanently "dead" when it quits on you. It seems to come back to life after it cools off. Otherwise, you'd know by now that it was just completely dead. Your first experiment wouldn't have worked for 30 minutes -- you wouldn't have had any video at all.

I hope I haven't confused things more.

Bottom line is that I'm back to suspecting the stabilizer. I'd focus on that at this point. If you do, you'll either confirm it's the problem or confirm that it isn't.

Good luck. It sounds like you're getting close.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 166
Registered: Mar-06
Also, you said:

"Ok, now I can record directly from the combo vhs drive to the combo dvd drive with no problem, ie a non-copyprotected vhs tape. So does that sound like a problem with the dvr overheating."

My answer is "no," it doesn't sound like you have any overheating problem with your DVR.

You also said in one of your earlier posts:

"I tried copying a copyright protected tape and again it stopped this time only 17 minutes into the movie. So I swapped vcrs, was able to copying for 45 min before it stopped. When it stops the picture on the tv goes blank, and the dvr does not record anything. But when I stop the record process, the tape is still playing in the vcr but can only hear the audio, no video. So I don't think the vcr is the problem, since it is happening on both vcrs."

I presume that when you say "the dvr does not record anything" you mean it doesn't record any VIDEO (picture), but that it did record the audio (sound).

Anyway, your statements there are also consistent with the problem being overheating of the stabilizer. The problem occurred with two different source VCRs and also happened after successful recording for some period of time (17 min & 45 min).

Of course, you said in your first post on this problem:

"I have been copying vhs to dvd for some time now, suddenly I can't get completely through one movie without it stopping or going blank, sometimes it picks back up but mostly just no pix or sound."

The "no pix or sound" part is what isn't consistent with it being the stabilizer. The stabilizer has no effect on the sound recording, so are you sure there was no sound recorded?

That's what got me away from thinking it was your stabilizer in the first place.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 167
Registered: Mar-06
I got a Shop4tech email with the 10% off coupon code today. It's "PC10" and expires on the 24th.

David, you mentioned awhile back that you didn't see the Google checkout at that site anymore. I went there at that time and got 200 more TY discs and didn't use the Google checkout (for an additional savings) because I didn't see it either.

But it may still be available.

If you Google "Shop4tech", the first hit has a button for Google checkout. So it may be that Google checkout is still available, but only if you get into the site from Google (?).

Also, the 2nd hit is for BradsDeals.com and says "Get 10% off at Shop4Tech with Free Coupons from BradsDeals.com"

So maybe you can always get a 10% coupon there?

If Google checkout still works for an additional 10% off, you can get 200 TY discs for 22.4 cents each ($44.80 total, which includes the free shipping).
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3465
Registered: Jul-04
They probably still have Google, but they didn't have the $10 off for first time users last time. Google finally got smart, it can only be used once per person or credit card or something. I used Google with half a dozen different e-mails to get the $10 off with each e-mail, but it doesn't work anymore.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 168
Registered: Mar-06
I might find out about that -- at least at Buy.com

I went there this morning as well and they DO have a Google checkout thing right on their webpage (for 1st time buyers). I'm thinking of getting some more of those -RW discs, so I might try to be a first time buyer again.

If you use a different computer (to get around the cookie thing), different email and different credit card, the only way they can deny it is because the address is the same. Which may happen. I'll let you know if/when I do it.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 26
Registered: Jun-06
Well guys and gal,

I switched my whole system to a different room, No Help. But I do believe it is my stablizer, I only record audio when the picture disappears from my screen. I tried the fan thing, but still bombs out. I am now going to try the ice thing to keep the stablizer cool. It works fine when recording nonprotected tapes without the stablizer.

I am becoming crazed with this problem.

If it didn't work at all I would know that something needs replaced but it works anywhere from 17 minutes up to 45 minutes so it's got to be the stablizer or a video cable getting hot/very warm or something. I also added a better surge surpressor, needed another one anyway.

Still working on this, haven't thrown it out the window. I am very persistent.

Thanks again for all the helpful advice. I will let you know if the ice thing works.

JoAnne
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 169
Registered: Mar-06
JoAnne -

NOW, you're cookin'. Sounds like you're becoming a troubleshooter. As I've been trying to emphasize (probably ad nauseum), you need to approach it step-wise (systematically).

It does look more and more like it's the stabilizer.

1) The problem doesn't happen when you're not using the stabilizer. Therefore, it's not any other piece of equipment (source VCR, recording DVR, surge surpressor, appliances on the same circuit, cables(?)).

2) The problem involves only the video and not the audio. Since the stabilizer's not involved in the audio transfer at all, this is again pointing toward the stabilizer as the problem AND (again) confirming that your other equipment is not at fault (at least as far as the audio portion of your other equipment goes).

3) The problem occurs after some period of time. Since these stabilizers are known to tend toward overheating, this aspect points toward the stabilizer as the probable suspect.

Now, as far as the cables go, I doubt there's any problem there. Your audio cables are irrelevant since they're not involved with the stabilizer in any way. So it's only the two yellow cables that connect the stabilizer that could be the source of the problem. You can confirm neither of these are the problem by simply using each of them without the stabilizer. If each performs okay on a 2-hour recording session, then neither one is the source of the problem.

You could confirm this easily enough, but I frankly doubt you need to.

As far as what can be done with the stabilizer at this point, have you told us which one you have? I looked back to see and didn't see it, but maybe I missed it. If you have the CT-200 (and for some reason I think you do), you can see from my November 18, 2006 post above that it has an "auto shut off feature (which is good because these units apparently can overheat if left on too long)."

It sounds like your auto shut off feature is shutting it down. Thus, when it cools down the unit comes back to life.

If that's what's going on, it's good news and bad news. The unit is shutting down so that it doesn't burn out, but it's messing up your recording sessions.

It may just be that the auto shut down circuit is a bit iffy. If you've cooled it with a fan and it still is shutting down, it sounds like it's shutting it down prematurely.

You might want to noodle around on Google and in the various forums to see if someone else has had this problem and maybe come up with a fix for it. Perhaps the auto shut down can be bypassed.

Assuming you are operating things under reasonably normal conditions (not excessive room temperature or on top of a hot appliance, near a hot lamp, etc.), the unit's most likely not getting "too hot," and it's just a flukey auto shut down circuit that's causing it to shut down when it shouldn't be doing so.

Of course, it could be that the unit itself is the problem and it's just running "too hot," and thus the auto shut down circuit is doing its job properly.

You're zeroing in on the problem. Keep at it and see if you can pinpoint it. Then you can decide what to do about it.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 27
Registered: Jun-06
To answer your question TMax I have the CT2. I am still trying to troubleshoot this problem. I think you may be correct, the stabilizer is the problem. I tried this past weekend to figure it out again and could copy over 1 hour before it blanked out. This time I unplugged the ac adapter and plugged it back in and could continue copying the video for a while longer. So now I think it could be the ac adapter causing the problem, it seems to get very hot. I placed an iced gel pack on the plug but it only seems to correct it temporarily, just a few more minutes.
Now my question, can I use any ac adapter or does it have to be one that is exactly like the one the stabilizer came with? The one it came with states: input - 120vac, 60hz, output - 9vdc, 100mA on the label. What do you think? Is this a viable solution or am I just going to have to bite the nail and buy a new stabilizer? I have been checking them out on ebay and other sites and it seems they are going for a premium price or can't find one at all. Are there any other stabilizers available that would work better, if I have to pay a premium price I want to be assured that this will not happen again?

Thank you for all your great help and advice.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3520
Registered: Jul-04
Transformers get hot, that's normal and doesn't mean there's a problem. I work on electronics and have never seen a problem with an adapter unless it failed completely. The problem is the CT2. Don't waste your money on a new adapter, it won't fix it.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 28
Registered: Jun-06
Thanks David

Why then is it, when I unplug the adapter from the stabilizer and plug right back in it will copy for 5-10 more minutes before going blank again? Then if I unplug and replug it in it continues for a few more minutes.

This is driving me crazy. I guess the answer is buy another stabilizer, right? What one do you suggest? I'm afraid to buy another Sima product for fear this will happen again.

Thanks again

JoAnne
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3521
Registered: Jul-04
The stabilizer resets when you unplug it, that's why it will work for a few minutes. I've read some pretty good reviews about the Dimax Grex. You might be able to find one on Ebay or Amazon marketplace.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 29
Registered: Jun-06
Thanks David

I think I read a while back in an earlier post from James that he uses a Dimax stabilizer. I checked Amazon and ebay for them but nothing. I checked out the Dimax website and they have one for $89 which is less than most GoDVD's are going for right now used.

James if you are out there, give me your opinion on the Dimax Grex stabilizer, ok?

David & Tmax, do you agree that I should replace my stabilizer? I just want to be sure that I have done every thing to make it run correctly. I am taking far to much time trying to diagnose this problem and getting nothing done.

Thanks for your help through all of this mess.

JoAnne
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3523
Registered: Jul-04
If you can record without the stabilizer and you can't with it, then unless it's a bad cable or connection, it's the stabilizer. If you buy straight from the manufacterer, you probably have 30 days to return the new one if it doesn't work. You might want to check into that just to be sure though.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 30
Registered: Jun-06
Thanks David

I am waiting to hear from James to see if he recommends the Dimax. I really value your opinions. I also checked to be sure it would work with my dvr combo and it is on their list of compatibles. They even gave instructions regarding setting up without the need for an external vhs player. I'm not holding my breath but that would be great.

Thanks again

JoAnne
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 31
Registered: Jun-06
David

I forgot to tell you, here is a copy of the guarantee:

The Grex video stabilizer units are unconditionally guaranteed by Dimax. If Grex has not performed to your satisfaction, you can simply return the undamaged unit within 60 days period with the original sales receipt to the distributor from whom the unit was purchased and your money will be promptly refunded. You can also request the exchange of your broken (not properly working unit) with new one. This warranty applies only during normal use and care and is absolutely void if the product is misused, neglected, damaged, altered, or repaired by someone other than DIMAX.

That sounds pretty good doesn't it!!

JoAnne
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3524
Registered: Jul-04
I don't think from what I've read you'll have problems with the Dimax.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 170
Registered: Mar-06
Hi Everyone -

Boy, I hit this site everyday (to get my Firefox browser working properly -- don't ask, long story) and no new posts for a long time. Then all of a sudden this morning I get a raft of new ones all at once.

Anyway, interesting stuff. JoAnne, good to hear from you again. And good catch on the possibility that your transformer could be the problem. I totally missed that one (I think). Indeed, that could easily be your problem (as opposed to your CT-2).

Now, as to James' opinion on the Dimax, he previously said "I've had my DiMax for about 6 months. I wouldn't trade it for anything. I haven't found anything it won't decode."

That was on February 24, 2007, so he can update you now when he logs on.

Just do a word search of this page for "James" and you'll find his posts and that opinion.

Now, as to your transformer, I agree w/ David that they run "hot" to the touch. So the fact that it feels "hot" doesn't indicate that there's a problem with it (unless it's REAL hot).

But I don't know that I agree that one will either work or not work. Therefore, I don't know that I agree that your transformer might not be the problem here. I have quite an assortment of them around here and some work and some don't and some "kinda" work. I tend to buy them at yard sales and such for 50 cents or whatever, which is why I have a bunch of them.

If you want to try a new transformer you can probably get away with spending ~ $15 or so at Radio Shack or some such place. The 9 volt DC output is quite common so you might be able to use it on other stuff and thus not completely waste your investment. And buying a new one would confirm the problem as either being your CT-2 or it's current transformer.

BUT, be careful if you do buy a new transformer. The one thing you didn't mention about yours is the polarity of the output connection. You need to get a new one that matches your current one. That is, the connector that plugs into your CT-2 has a round outer metal rim and a center metal ring that connects to the center pin on your CT-2. That center pin could be either the positive (+) connection or the negative (-) connection. Your CT-2 might show the polarity with a little diagram right by the connection. My CT-200 does, and it shows that my outer rim is negative (-) and my center connector is positive (+). But yours could be the opposite, so you have to be aware of that and get a transformer that matches your CT-2's connection polarity.

Your transformer may also have this information on it. Most do. Mine does.

Interestingly, my CT-200 takes a 7.5 volt DC, 500 mA power supply. So it's less voltage but more amperage than your CT-2.

Your 100 mA transformer is very low power and I'm sure you will have no problem finding a new one of equal or greater power cheaply enough. You don't need to match the "100 mA" and can use one that puts out more (like 500 mA). David can chime in here, but I think I'm correct about that.

But you can't use one that is less powerful (like 50 mA). So you need 100 mA or more.

And make sure the connection polarity is correct.

And the 9 volts DC, of course.

Radio Shack used to sell a universal power supply that puts out a variety of voltages at various powers AND also has adaptor plugs so's you could match any polarity connection. Thus you could make the outer rim either positive or negative and vice versa for the inner ring. That's a pretty handy item and I don't think it was all that expensive.

Anyway, if I were in your shoes, I'd probably try a new or different transformer first, and one that I knew was working properly. You might even have one around your house already, powering a telephone handset or some other device. I have a few cordless phones at my place and they tend to use 9 volt DC power supplies of at least 100 mA. So all you need to match is the connection polarity. If you have one of those that matches, you could try it.

The reasons I'd try a new power supply first are: 1) It's a less expensive potential solution, and 2) It could prove that your CT-2 is still good. If you just buy another stabilizer, you still won't know for sure whether your CT-2 is good or bad.

But that's just me. I'm cheap, which is why I'd go that way. But sometimes being cheap ends up costing more cuz you could end up spending $$ on a new transformer that you don't really need.

So it's entirely up to you. Good luck.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 32
Registered: Jun-06
Thanks TMax for the again valuable information. I will try the transformer idea first. If it does not work, then I guess I will order the Dimax. It seems like a good deal and the guarantee is very good.

Have you ever heard of being able to hook up the combo vhs/dvd recorder so you do not need an external vhs or dvd player? Dimax shows a diagram that will let me hook mine up that way, specifically my Panasonic DMR35V. I'll let you know if I have to buy that stabilizer from them.

JoAnne
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 171
Registered: Mar-06
JoAnne -

Yes, I have heard of being able to use the VHS-player-half of a combo as an "external" VHS player, but it depends on the particular combo unit.

Namely, it needs to have an "external output" for the VHS player. If your Panasonic DMR35V has that (those) output(s), you can do it. You're simply bypassing the internal connection of the two units (the VHS and DVD units), and thus can connect the stabilizer in the video line, which you obviously can't do "internally."

Your owner's manual for the Panasonic should tell you whether you have these outputs, which should be labeled as such on the unit itself. You'll most likely have the same three RCA connections (red, white, yellow = right audio, left audio, video). Connect the stabilizer to the yellow (video) line same as you'd do with an external VHS.

I have NO experience with this, I've just read about it. David probably knows much more about it. Indeed, you might only really have the video output since that's the only one that needs to be "stabilized" (translation: filter out the copyright signals!). Thus it could be that your audio would be transferred via the internal connection and the video via your external connection (thru the stabilizer).

I doubt it's that way, but it could be. More likely (I'd guess), it would be all three red, white and yellow RCA outputs, all labeled "external" or something like that.

As for an external DVD output, that wouldn't do you a lot of good unless you had another DVD recorder to connect it to. Then you could make DVD to DVD transfers. But you could do that anyway with any DVD player -- same as you're doing now with your external VHS player. Ya just connect the DVD player instead of the VHS player.

I do that all the time with my two D-R4 units or using one of my other DVD players as the source. The input connections are the same regardless of whether it's a VHS or DVD player that's "inputting."
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3527
Registered: Jul-04
A new transformer isn't going to fix the problem. If it was the transformer, the Sima would lose power completely. Unless that's the case, it's not the adapter. Adaptetrs either work or they don't, there's no in between.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3529
Registered: Jul-04
Does the Sima lose power when recording stops? If not, and you want to rule out the adapter, unplug the adapter at the Sima instead of unplugging it from the wall. When the Sima does the same thing, you'll know it's not the adapter. All that's in an adapter is a transformer, 2-4 diodes and a couple of capacitors. All of that stuff is very reliable and when something goes, the adapter will fail. The transformer getting hot and the Sima working again for a few minutes after unplugging power is no reason to suspect the adapter.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 172
Registered: Mar-06
Hmmmmm. David's posts got me thinking about the adapter (power supply, transformer, whatever!!). I won't dispute his expertise on the subject and I suspect he's probably correct about your power supply (adapter) working properly here.

And I think I may have good news for you, JoAnne.

Let me ask you this: Does your CT-2 indicate what voltage should be used with it? My CT-200 has this information printed right on it (right next to the plug where the power supply plugs in). As I said before, mine says "7.5V" and right below that "0.5A" and right below that there's the diagram of the polarity of the plug (with the center post being positive). Looks kinda like this (if you were to put a dot in the center of the "C") -

- ------C----- +

This means the outer rim (indicated by the "C") is negative, and the center post (indicated by the dot in the center of the C [which I can't draw here] is positive.

By the way, "0.5A" = 500mA

Now, if your unit has this info, does it really call for a 9 volt power supply?

I'm wondering if you have the right power supply for your unit. I think you got this on ebay, correct? If so, your seller may have given you a non-original power supply that didn't come with it at all.

After reading David's posts, I noodled around on Google and stumbled on this Crutchfield (archive) page -

http://www.crutchfield.com/cgi-bin/ProdView.asp?g=15270

Scroll down to the "What's Included" box and see that it says that it comes with:

AC adapter (7.5 VDC/500mA) with attached 6.25' cord

That's the same power supply I have for my CT-200, and I know mine is the correct power supply.

And if that weren't enough, click on that link there in that same box. It's the link that says "Download Owner's Manual." It will come up in Acrobat as a PDF document.

Then click the "Specs" link (on the left) and you'll see that the CT-2 is indeed supposed to come with a 7.5 VDC/500mA power supply. That's the same power supply my CT-200 came with and that makes sense to me. I can't see Sima changing the power supply from 9 volts to 7.5 volts when they upgraded the CT-2 to the CT-200. The two units are basically the same but for the 200 having some additional features.

So it looks like you got the wrong power supply with your CT-2. The higher voltage is probably causing it to overheat, thus causing it to shut down. Apparently, your Sima "works" okay with the higher voltage (for awhile anyway) and hasn't (yet) been damaged by it. That's good.

The lower power of your power supply (100mA vs the 500mA called for) could also be causing some related problem.

So I suggest that you take a close look at your CT-2 and see what it says on it, then consider the possibility that you have the wrong power supply.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3530
Registered: Jul-04
1.5 volts over what it's supposed to be usually won't cause any problems. Most stuff would rather have too much power than too little. It's the low amperage that would be the problem. I didn't read through all these posts. If you're trying to operate something rated at 500ma with an adapter rated at 100ma, that's not going to work and could have damaged the Sima. Like I said before, too little power is usually worse than too much.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 173
Registered: Mar-06
And here's a universal power supply for ten bucks -

It's rated at only 300mA but would probably be enough power for your CT-2. It has switchable polarity and 6 different input jacks, so it'll work with your unit. They also have a 1000mA version, which is twice as much power as you need and is the same price -

I'd check out Radio Shack to see what they have. Then maybe some electronics supply stores, etc. But if all else fails, you could go with these guys (or somebody like them).
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 174
Registered: Mar-06
It's the low amperage that would be the problem.

Most stuff would rather have too much power than too little.


That's interesting. I didn't know that. I also didn't see your post before I posted mine just now.

So maybe JoAnne could just try a 9 volt 500mA (or larger) power supply? Those are quite common, as I said. As long as the polarity is right, she could try one of those if she can find one around the house (or around a friend's house).
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 33
Registered: Jun-06
I'm always amazed by your knowledge. I have learned so much during this ordeal.

Ok, if I am getting this right, David you are saying that my problem is that the 100mA is too low because my Ct-2 does show exactly what yours does TMax. 7.5 volt, 0.5A. My adapter is 9 volt, 100mA. So I have just checked around the house and found an adapter that is exactly what the Ct-2 shows. I am going to try it. Yes, I checked to be sure the polarity is correct too. Will get back to you after I check this out on my system. Maybe we have hit upon the problem. I only hope my ct-2 was not damaged by this.

TMax you are correct I did purchase it on ebay.

Thanks again

JoAnne
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 175
Registered: Mar-06
So I have just checked around the house and found an adapter that is exactly what the Ct-2 shows.

You gotta be kidding me!!

 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3532
Registered: Jul-04
Yes, the problem is the 100ma adapter is too low. Now you'll just have to hope that giving the Sima too little power didn't damage it. If you did need to buy one of those 2 adapters, the 1000ma one would be the one to get. You can go over on amperage, the Sima will only use what it needs, but you can't go under, that will strain the Sima and the adapter both.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 34
Registered: Jun-06
Yes, it is amazing that I found one so quickly. I won't be able to test this theory until tomorrow(Saturday)since I have kids until 10pm tonight. But I will let you know if we have a fix to this long drawn out issue. Here's hoping it isn't already damaged beyond repair.

Thank you both so very much.

JoAnne
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 176
Registered: Mar-06
I have learned so much during this ordeal

JoAnne, a couple of other things while we're on the subject -

David mentioned about whether your Sima was losing power, etc. I noticed that your CT-2 has the same green light in the bottom corner that my CT-200 has. That light will be on whenever the unit is powered up (assuming it's working properly). But the light on mine blinks slowly whenever it's not receiving a signal to record. So before I start my source player, the light is blinking. As soon as I start my source player, the light burns steady.

So if the problem had been your source player, your light would have probably been blinking, not steady. That's assuming yours works like mine, which I think it probably does.

If the problem was that your adapter wasn't working, your light would likely be out (I think this is the question David was asking you).

I don't know if you ever noticed what your light was doing when your recording stopped. Did you?

It sounds like your CT-2 was shutting itself off because your adapter wasn't right for it, but I don't know if the light goes out or stays on when a Sima shuts itself down. I suspect that the light would go out, but it might just blink.

Anyway, you should pay some attention to that green light and what it's doing. If everything is plugged in and you're trying to record something and the light is either out or blinking, you can be pretty sure there's a problem.

The light should come on when you power it up, then be blinking before you start your source tape player, then stop blinking and burn steady when you start your source player.

At least, that's how my CT-200 works.

You probably should download and save that Owner's Manual I mentioned yesterday if you don't already have one. Or just print it out. I was a little surprised that link still works given that these units are no longer available. So you might want to avail yourself of that link before it goes away.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 35
Registered: Jun-06
Thanks TMax for the heads up on the Owner's manual, I saved a copy to my computer.

I will pay attention to the lights tomorrow when I am testing this other adapter. Will let you know.

The owner's manual does state if you are using certain enhancement modes the light will be blinking. Wish there was a way to tell which enhancement mode it is set on. I usually press the button until the picture looks good. Then record.

More during the weekend.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 177
Registered: Mar-06
The owner's manual does state if you are using certain enhancement modes the light will be blinking. Wish there was a way to tell which enhancement mode it is set on.

JoAnne - The blinking light they are referring to is the LED up by the input plug (green or orange), not the green power light down in the lower right corner that I was talking about.

As far as telling which enhancement mode you are in, you start with a steady LED. That's the "normal" mode. Pushing the "video enhancement" button moves to the next mode (Enhanced) and the LED will be blinking. Pushing the "video enhancement" button again moves to the next mode (Darken) and the LED will be blinking. Pushing the "video enhancement" button again moves to the next mode (B + W) and the LED will be blinking. Pushing the button again moves back to the "normal" mode and the LED will be steady (not blinking).

All of this is in the manual. READ THE MANUAL!!

I know it's confusing, but read the manual and fiddle around with it.

Which LED is lit (green or orange) depends on which input you've selected -- either composite (yellow RCA plug) or S-video. The green LED should be lit when you are using the yellow RCA cable (which I believe you are). You MUST select the input (it doesn't do it for you). I'm sure you have selected the correct input or you wouldn't have been getting any recording at all.

So, you should have the green LED lit and the green "indicator light" (the one I was talking about before) also lit when you are using your Sima. The green LED should be steady when you are in normal mode and blinking when you are in any of the other enhancement modes. The green indicator light should be steady when you have an input signal from your source VCR (as when you are recording) and blinking if you have no input signal.

If you were to connect using an S-video cable, you'd select that input and the orange LED would light up. Steady when in normal mode and blinking when in one of the other modes.

That's about it.

READ THE MANUAL!!

 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 178
Registered: Mar-06
David -

Do you think that JoAnne's Sima might have some type of protection (diodes?) against being powered by a power supply with a reverse polarity connection?

Is that something that's common? Because without that sort of protection, it seems like hooking up one of these things to a power supply with reverse polarity could instantly ruin it.

And it's an easy enough mistake to make.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 179
Registered: Mar-06
JoAnne -

I was just fiddling around with my CT-200 and you can pretty much IGNORE my post right above (my "READ THE MANUAL!!" post).



It seems that there's just the one light on our units. That's the one you and I both know (the one that's called the "Power" light in my owners manual, and "Indicator Light" in your owners manual). Indeed, it's the light that turns orange when the S-video input is selected. There's no other LED light(s) on the unit.

It's also the light that does indeed blink when you are in any of the enhancement modes other than the "Normal" mode.

But that is a fast blink. The other blink on my unit (when there's no input signal present) is a slower blink (every 2 seconds).

I'm not sure yours even blinks at all when there's no input signal present. It might not. It probably doesn't.

My owners manual says that mine blinks when there's no signal present because it has "Auto Off/On signal detection" that automatically shuts the unit off when there's no signal present and thus causes the light to blink every 2 seconds.

Your unit has no auto off feature (or ANY off feature or switch) so I doubt it has this slow blink.

If yours is blinking, it's probably because you are in one of the enhancement modes (other than the "Normal" mode).

I think I have it right now. You probably should read over the manual anyway. And fiddle around with yours to get the feel of moving between the enhancement modes.

 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3534
Registered: Jul-04
If you connect an adapter with the wrong polarity, it will cook the Sima. You can test polarity with a voltage meter if one is available.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 36
Registered: Jun-06
Well guys, I hooked up my ct-2 using the adapter that came with the unit this morning and the light does not come on. I guess that last hour of recording that I did was it's last hurrah. I tried the adapter that I found with the same exact requirements and no light. Using it with the adapter that was sent with it when I bought it must have fried it finally. I am upset that someone on ebay would send it with an adapter that was not correct for the specs.

I am going to order the DiMax I was looking at on the website. Maybe I will be back in business again.

Thanks for all your help. It has been an education and I love learning. A good education is well worth the cost.

Will let you know how the DiMax works for me.

JoAnne
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3540
Registered: Jul-04
You might try looking inside the Sima for a fuse. I haven't seen inside one so I don't know if it has one or not.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 38
Registered: Jun-06
Nothing inside that looks like a fuse? Just a circuit board, unless it looks completely different than any fuse I am aware of. Was a great idea though.

Thanks
JoAnne
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3541
Registered: Jul-04
There are what they call IC protectors that look like a transistor but work like a fuse. If there are any they are usually labeled on the circuit board as ICP. The power light could be burned out, not very likely, but possible.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Lthompson

Alabama

Post Number: 58
Registered: May-06
JoAnne I have the same Sima. you might try the adjustment to the light and see if you can get it to work.The button is right beside it. It is used to adjust the color or so I think. It can blink slow or fast.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Lthompson

Alabama

Post Number: 59
Registered: May-06
David I ran into something that I never relized was a problem. My RCA DVD VCR Combo DRC8295N the book that came with it says use only DVD +R so I have been. I was using 8X until i ran out and I bought 16X thinking it didnt matter. They will not record , they go about 15 seconds and stop recording. I tried 4 of them and then put in a DVRW and it worked perfect. I read the book and it says plainly use only 2.4x 4x or 8x. I would have thought 16x would work but I guess not.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3544
Registered: Jul-04
16x discs work in some standalones and don't in others. There may be a firmware update to allow using 16x discs. Look on the manufacterer's website or call and see.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Lthompson

Alabama

Post Number: 60
Registered: May-06
Thanks David.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 180
Registered: Mar-06
JoAnne - You might want to try your Sima again even tho' the light doesn't seem to be working.

If you haven't already tried it, that is.

Use an -RW disc and just try copying a bit of a tape and see if it worked.

It seems strange that it would die just as we figured out what the real problem was.

And thus came up with the real solution (a proper power supply).
 

New member
Username: Soccertl

Post Number: 1
Registered: Sep-07
I just stumbled on this forum while looking for a copy device for VHS to DVD conversion. I have so many VHS movies I want to copy them before they fall apart. I wound up ordering the one from Star Development called the Video Ultra. I hope it works fine. Some people have said they liked it but have not found much information on it.

Anyway, on the Sima no light thing. If not a fuse it could a fuseable resistor. It looks like a resistor and has the resistance needed to control the current input but they can blow if they overheat. Chargeable devices use these a lot since they take up less space. Worth a shot unless you do not know anyway inclined to soldering.
 

New member
Username: Soccertl

Post Number: 2
Registered: Sep-07
That was suppose to be:

anyone inclined to soldering

not

anyway inclined to soldering
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 39
Registered: Jun-06
Hi

Well, I gave up on the sima and bought the DiMax. It is working great, no problems at all. I was amazed that it arrived so quickly when it was shipped from Israel. Only took a week, I guess customs was feeling good to me that day.

Want to thank every one of you that have helped me through this ordeal.

Tony, I am not one inclined to use a soldering iron and wouldn't know what to do with it anyway. That's one thing I have never tried to use.

Anyway I'm again able to copy these vhs tapes to dvd and not so frustrated anymore. It was a great learning process.

Thanks again

JoAnne
 

New member
Username: Soccertl

Post Number: 5
Registered: Sep-07
I am glad you have it working again JoAnne.

I am happy myself with the Video Magic/Ultra I got from Star Development. It enhances the video and the audio runs through it as well for some reason, though it is probably just a passthru. Anyway, it is working great and makes the DVD look very good.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jastme

Post Number: 40
Registered: Jun-06
I'm glad you found one you like, Tony. The verdict is still out on the quality thing with the dimax, it seems to be fine. I don't have any way of adjusting anything on it, but the quality looks as good if not better than the original vhs tapes. I am happy that I can get these tapes over to a more storage saving size. Daycare kids just want to watch movies they are not yet into high quality stuff. I will let you all know how I like it after a few more uses.

Thanks again

JoAnne
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 181
Registered: Mar-06
Well, all good things .....

After lying around idle for the past few months, I fired up my CT-200 the other day and found that it's not working properly. Skipping ahead to the bottom line, I just called Sima's toll free number and was told something that moments later was confirmed to me via an email reply to my email query which I had sent moments before calling -

Sorry due to a court order we are not permitted to manufacture, sale, support or service that line of products. They've been taken off the market and no longer sold. Thanks for your interest in Sima Products.

So that's the story there.

As to my unit, it's giving me a black and white scrambled picture UNLESS I use the s-video output, in which case I get an unscrambled picture, but still black and white. The power supply seems to be working fine and the unit itself seems to be functioning properly from all outward appearances. If I use a Macrovision source DVD, it does filter out the copy protection, but it's still black and white. It's black and white with a non-copy protected source disc as well.

Any thoughts????
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 182
Registered: Mar-06
Hold on .....

I'd edit my last post if I could, but I don't see that I can do that. Sooo, to update things, I just happened to check my Sima right after posting and I noticed that I had the little output switch to "PAL" instead of "NTSC." I had fiddled with all the buttons and switches and apparently forgot to switch this one back to its original position.

And now it's working fine again. BUT, only with the s-video output cable. If I use the composite output cable, I still get a scrambled picture.

So it looks like there's some sort of problem with the composite output. The user's manual notes that both outputs (composite and s-video) output a signal regardless of which input is selected. So they are both active, but only the s-video output is working properly.

I checked the cable itself and that's okay. So it's not the cable, it's the composite output on the unit.

That's the latest.

I'm still open to suggestions.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Lthompson

Alabama

Post Number: 61
Registered: May-06
TMAX, on my CT 2 the button beside the light is what controls the color.I can move it and it makes it black and white and then again I can adjust the color.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 183
Registered: Mar-06
Hi Liz -

Ya, I know about that button. Mine doesn't do anything when I'm using the composite output (the RCA cable output).

In fact, even the color bars are black and white.

It's a mystery why this happened although I did have it hooked up wrong at first, so maybe something happened then. Still, the only thing that was hooked up wrong was the composite INPUT (not output). The composite output has always had the lone yellow wire connected to it, and that was properly hooked up to the input of the target recorder.

I had the composite input on the Sima hooked up to something other than the output of the source DVD player at first. That might explain why the composite input is messed up, but I don't quite get how the would mess up the composite output.

Anyway, it's useable via the s-video output, so I'm still good to go.

Your CT-2 is virtually the same as my CT-200 but for the automatic power shut off on my 200 and (I think) maybe a couple more enhancement modes on my 200. That's the button you're talking about.

Thanks for the suggestion. Maybe the thing will clear its head and start working 100% properly again. In the meantime, I can still use it via the s-video output. So if I'm forever stuck with that output, it's not the worst thing that could happen.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 184
Registered: Mar-06
Just got an email from Meritline.com advising that they are having a sale on the discs I've been using (thanks to David's suggestion) with 100% success.

These are the Taiyo Yuden Valueline 8X Silver Thermal Lacquer DVD-R Blank Media Shrink Wrapped discs.

200 Pack Only $42.49 Shipped after Instant Coupon.

The coupon code is Taiyoyuden15P [Expire:2008/04/03]

Get 'em while they're hot cuz they are well worth it. This is the cheapest I've seen them and I kinda wish I'd waited cuz I paid $50 for my last batch, which is a very good price ($0.25/disc), but not as good as this price. Duh!
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3796
Registered: Jul-04
I've been seeing some complaints about new batches of TY discs. I decided to switch to Verbatim.

Newegg has 100 packs of Verbatim for $29 shipped with a $9 rebate. I stocked up on them when Office Max had them for $20/100 and a $15 off coupon if you bought 4 packs.

I got 2 50 spindles from Meritline awhile back, one of them was completely trashed and was shipped that way, the broken pieces weren't in the box. I've dug about halfway through the discs, all of them are trashed. I'll never buy from them again. That said, you would probably be safe with shrink wrapped discs.

My last batch of those value TYs had a lot of discs with scratches, spots, etc. I don't think they are as good as they used to be. The made in Taiwan Verbatim discs are great, I don't know about the made in India ones. I haven't seen any MII discs yet, but there are some out there.
 

Silver Member
Username: Tmax59

Post Number: 185
Registered: Mar-06
David -

Thanks for the heads up on the current status of TY discs. Also, I note that Meritline is a company that I had trouble with in the past. In fact, I never did end up getting anything from them. I noted my difficulties in various posts on this page and ended up dealing with Supermediastore instead.
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 3797
Registered: Jul-04
Supermediastore has always been better than Meritline for me. I got a busted up spindle from Meritline once before too, the discs were good that time at least. Look at the feedback about new TYs at Supermediastore, that's where I've seen more than a few complaints.

The Office Max Verbatims I got came with basically no packing material in the box and the spindles were trashed pretty bad, but luckily there's an Office Max not far away, I just exchanged the trashed ones for new ones in the store.
 

New member
Username: Amarillistarshot

Post Number: 1
Registered: Sep-08
Hello...I'm not a member here, and I'm certainly not good with electronics. But I've been having difficulties with my VHS to DVD recorder when it comes to Disney movies. I've read through some of these pages, and found that I need a 'stabilizer'? It would be much appreciated if someone could recommend a few brands, and name a few ball-park prices. Thanks!
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jchurch43

Denver, Colorado USA

Post Number: 94
Registered: May-06
Can anyone recommend a good forum for networking 4 TiVo units together?
 

Gold Member
Username: Samijubal

Post Number: 4022
Registered: Jul-04
Did you try here?

http://forum.videohelp.com/

If you can't get an answer there, it's not going to be easy to get one.
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