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 Post subject: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorder?
PostPosted: 25 Apr 2019, 17:37 
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Hey guys,

So a few weeks ago I purchased a Pioneer CLD-1080 locally. It's single side only, but works perfectly. Honestly, the single side doesn't bother me since I'm using this for captures, and most discs I'm dealing with are single side anyway.

I also had a CLD-D604 before that with a broken m-holder, but I recently got a VNL1700 in the mail and repaired this player.

The same day, I got a new CLD-D703 in the mail from eBay. It's a little wonky - sometimes it spits out the disc but generally always works on the second attempt. I assume this is an easy fix (a belt cleaning or something), but I haven't had the time/need to look into it yet. Playback seems fine.

------------

Anyway, I was doing comparisons between the 3 players and honestly, I'm not seeing a whole lot different between them. There are a few things I can see, but not at all the night-and-day difference that I think I should expect based on the many posts I've read. I'm wondering if my passthrough device (Panasonic DMR-EZ47V) might be limiting the quality I'm getting.

I've read the entire sticky thread about DVD recorders and I don't feel like I have a definitive answer on what's good/bad. I know the ES10 and ES15 are highly recommended, but my problem with those is that they limit to 704x480 rather than 720x480. I know it seems mostly academic, but I'd like to make sure I am capturing in full D1 if at all possible. Secondly, I have had several Panasonic recorders from that era die on me. I'd ideally like to get something newer. And while this may seem like a stretch, I'd ideally like to find one that can do HDMI out at 480i. If that's not possible, staying with component out is fine.

Can anyone recommend a model that fits the bill and has a good comb filter? I think I have an EH50 and E20 in working condition (as well as a Samsung model somewhere), but these don't seem like the best candidates from what I gather (even though the EH50 seems to share the same chip as the ES10/ES15). Thanks in advance.
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 Post subject: Re: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorde
PostPosted: 25 Apr 2019, 18:28 
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Most DVD recorders do a huge amount of signal conditioning. My JVC is borderline miraculous. This is probably why your two players look the same. All seven of mine look the same going through my DVD recorder.

Hook them to an SD CRT. You’ll see the difference. Understand that people only had SD CRTs back then so all the improvements and upgrades that made the difference between the $500 machine and the $5000 machine are made to improve performance in SD, not through a stack of digital stuff. They may be invisible on your setup.
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 Post subject: Re: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorde
PostPosted: 25 Apr 2019, 18:47 
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Yeah the signal conditioning is what I was afraid of. I really am hoping that I can just take one of the D > A conversions out of the mix by capturing 480i over HDMI, and also if I know it's got a good comb filter in it, I'm willing to take a gamble on a new DVD recorder. It's just kind of a crapshoot because you have to trust people on the internet for recommendations and you don't really know all the variables in their chain, nor their personal standards of quality.
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 Post subject: Re: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorde
PostPosted: 25 Apr 2019, 22:58 
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Well, I looked in my closet of old goodwill electronics finds, and I had a DMR-E20 and a DMR-E30 (both working), as well as a dead DMR-ES20 and (a second) dead EH50. The E20 and E30 both have 3D comb filters according to the menu. Surprisingly, they both show up as 720x480 in my capture device - maybe I was just remembering them being 704x480 when recording onto a disc.

I tested both the E20 and E30 and they brighten the image enough to where it's hard to do comparisons, and essentially makes it necessary for post-processing. I think this puts these two out of the running.

The DMR-EH50 does seem to do something different that eliminates some chroma noise, but it's still pretty hard to tell if this is a 3D comb filter. I feel like it also introduces a little bit of MPEG encoding artifacts during transitions and fades. Honestly, I've got like 20 files to compare between the different LD players, the different DVD recorders, V-DNR on/off/tweaked, etc. This is the type of judgement-call vortex that I really hate being in - just kinda wish there was someone saying "hey, buy this and you're good to go"...
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 Post subject: Re: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorde
PostPosted: 25 Apr 2019, 23:44 
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alexpigment wrote:
This is the type of judgement-call vortex that I really hate being in - just kinda wish there was someone saying "hey, buy this and you're good to go"...


Since you are the only one interested in this type of thing its hard to do so.

I had a DVD recorder about 6? years ago and it was great to rip some stuff but I no longer have it nor do I care to make copies of my discs.
I like watching my LDs with an LD player, that's why I collect them.
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 Post subject: Re: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorde
PostPosted: 26 Apr 2019, 00:16 
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rein-o wrote:
alexpigment wrote:
This is the type of judgement-call vortex that I really hate being in - just kinda wish there was someone saying "hey, buy this and you're good to go"...


Since you are the only one interested in this type of thing its hard to do so.

I had a DVD recorder about 6? years ago and it was great to rip some stuff but I no longer have it nor do I care to make copies of my discs.
I like watching my LDs with an LD player, that's why I collect them.


I'm the only one interested in this type of thing? I know I'm not the only one capturing laserdiscs for posterity. Also, the only discs I own are ones with music videos on it, and those are better served in a file system where you can quickly access each video. Imagine having to put in a new laserdisc every 4 minutes! ;) At any rate, I'm trying to get the best possible capture setup within reason. When I find problems, I try to solve them rather than live with them. I know there are experts here who have put the time into this and know what works well what doesn't. Maybe they don't read the forums actively or maybe they just don't care to respond.

Also keep in mind, the DVD recorder is just there as a passthrough to convert from composite to component (or HDMI preferably) - I wouldn't be putting this much time and effort into it if I were limited to ~8mbps MPEG-2 and the fine details were destroyed. I also wouldn't be investing in Laserdisc if I were perfectly happy with VHS captures on high end equipment. Hopefully that put things into perspective.
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 Post subject: Re: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorde
PostPosted: 26 Apr 2019, 01:49 
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alexpigment wrote:
I know I'm not the only one capturing laserdiscs for posterity.

Well then, you should ask them what they are using. :ugeek:
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 Post subject: Re: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorde
PostPosted: 26 Apr 2019, 02:29 
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rein-o wrote:
alexpigment wrote:
I know I'm not the only one capturing laserdiscs for posterity.

Well then, you should ask them what they are using. :ugeek:


Put yourself in my shoes. I'm asking a question in a subforum that's described as "Scalers, Filters, Video Processors, and Displays" and asking a question about a DVD recorder as a comb filter. There's a *sticky* that's 14 pages long in this subforum about using DVD recorders for this exact purpose, which I read through pretty thoroughly. You tell me you don't use a DVD recorder as a passthrough and that I should just watch the laserdiscs. Given that, do I assume you're just busting my balls, or should I actually be taking you seriously?
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 Post subject: Re: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorde
PostPosted: 26 Apr 2019, 03:26 
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Sort of both.
I am busting as the resident copy police. Yes, yes, yes I understand all the rights you have to copy stuff that you own etc. etc.

But on the other hand I watch my LDs and run them straight from the player to the TV or Projector without any scaler, I don't see the need for one.
There are people who do use them and do get good results from them but I can't see and won't spend the money for a personally very small improvement.

If you do the copy route I would say its best to pickup some of the stuff that you are mentioning that you have and do the capturing.
How to get better results is not an easy thing to find out. As you know already there are many pieces and they differ from quality to company etc.

I think you may end up spending hours and hundreds or thousands of dollars to only see a 5,8 or even 10% improvement and then by that time
the disc may be released from an original master on the next new format that hasn't even been offered.

Anyway if you get this far from reading, sorry about the bust and all honesty good luck doing the captures as its not a fun thing to deal with and
since you have so many options you will really just have to do the trial and error.
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 Post subject: Re: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorde
PostPosted: 26 Apr 2019, 03:30 
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You can do anything you want with your LDs. Only your business. Back to original topic, you can try late jvc dvhs decks. Jvc hm dh30000u are fairly reasonably priced nowadays. You can feed composite and connect it’s firewire output to your computer. I had the 40000u, the comb filter was on par with the one in cld-99 or better.
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 Post subject: Re: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorde
PostPosted: 26 Apr 2019, 03:44 
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substance wrote:
You can do anything you want with your LDs. Only your business. Back to original topic, you can try late jvc dvhs decks. Jvc hm dh30000u are fairly reasonably priced nowadays. You can feed composite and connect it’s firewire output to your computer. I had the 40000u, the comb filter was on par with the one in cld-99 or better.


You know who has one of these obscure beasts in his goodwill finds closet? ME! I don't have a native firewire port on my PC, but I have a Sound Blaster audio card that has one, so I guess I could install that. Hopefully a project for tomorrow or this weekend. Thanks for the tip!

Out of curiosity, does the video get encoded before being sent firewire, or is it a direct stream of data?
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 Post subject: Re: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorde
PostPosted: 26 Apr 2019, 03:58 
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rein-o wrote:
Sort of both.
I am busting as the resident copy police. Yes, yes, yes I understand all the rights you have to copy stuff that you own etc. etc.


Got it - makes more sense now :) As for the rabbit hole of money and time for minimal payoff, I'm well aware that I'm headed there - I just want to make sure I'm doing it right as soon as possible, so I don't keep redoing the captures (for minimal gains in improvement). I also - like you - don't see the benefit of using scalers since scaling algorithms and hardware get better and better over the years inside computers, so it's easier to just stay in 480i. Nvidia does a great job at deinterlacing and scaling via DXVA2. Right now for me it's all about having a good source and making sure the composite signal gets handled as well as possible. I didn't realize how non-trivial that last part was until recently. I had taken it for granted that all of my VCRs were sending out S-Video signals.

And as for the prospect of some of these things being released on DVD in the future, I welcome it. My wallet is ready. The market just doesn't seem to be with me on this.
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 Post subject: Re: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorde
PostPosted: 26 Apr 2019, 04:19 
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I hear you, and now it seems that they are not releasing as much as they once did for anything, as others said no later seasons of Muppet show and other stuff.
There are even some things being released on bluray only that I'm not interested in owning more formats.

I've got to focus on more important things like heat and house repairs LOL
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 Post subject: Re: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorde
PostPosted: 26 Apr 2019, 11:45 
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If I remember correctly, it’s direct stream.
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 Post subject: Re: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorde
PostPosted: 26 Apr 2019, 23:43 
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Well the JVC DVHS (3000) was a bust. I got it out to test just going through component and the colors are almost nil. Probably some bad caps inside I'd guess. That may be a project for another day. Working on VCRs makes my brain hurt :)
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 Post subject: Re: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorde
PostPosted: 27 Apr 2019, 02:01 
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I have a 2009 JVC DR-MV150B combo DVD/VCR thing. In my option it’s absolutely amazing but I don’t do a lot of capturing or even watching LD on flat panels so I don’t know a lot or have strong opinions on any of it. I usually just watch movies on my Sony XBR 960 since I rarely copy things I own. I will %100 enjoy getting out an LD just to watch a four minute video. It’s not anything like a hassle.*

These captures were made with the device, simply playing a CLD-99 straight into it then dropping the resultant VOB file into YouTube:

https://youtu.be/6oK6X5uikyI

https://youtu.be/8b5vec5hZbQ

https://youtu.be/fU1JWHDPc0o

https://youtu.be/q5jOMLbyozg

Is that massively better or worse than your results? The player outputs HDMI at 480p so I was thinking about capturing that but then I’d have to tie my computer to it for hours so I haven’t actually done it.




* I will however complain about menus and loading times on BR/DVD all day and night.
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 Post subject: Re: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorde
PostPosted: 27 Apr 2019, 05:03 
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It's a lot more likely the music videos will be officially released on YouTube than a BluRay these days. And DVD's of music videos are a bit hit or miss, sometimes they're worse than the YouTube postings!

I'm pretty sure the firewire output is a different encoding, but it shouldn't be very different from MPEG-2 output.
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 Post subject: Re: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorde
PostPosted: 27 Apr 2019, 05:09 
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signofzeta:

Definitely not massively worse but I’m focusing on background noise (chroma and luma), which instantly disappears when you upload to YouTube and take the file down to sub-1mbps H.264. I want to preserve as much analog detail (grain and all) as possible with a high signal to noise ratio. I’m not really complaining about the quality I’m getting - just trying to make sure my chain is ideal. It’s hard to compare it to anything without a comparison rip of the same content.

FYI when you upload to YouTube there is no 60p option for 480p nor do they properly deinterlace from 30i to 60p anyway. So you’re destroying the 3/2 pull down cadence of telecined film and getting jerky motion. If you’re interested in improvinig your uploads let me know and I can let you know the optimal encoding settings prior to upload.

As for JVC recorders, I rarely see those second hand. It would be nice to pick one up though. I appreciate the recommendation. You don’t happen to know if it does 480i over HDMI do you?
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 Post subject: Re: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorde
PostPosted: 27 Apr 2019, 05:13 
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happycube wrote:
It's a lot more likely the music videos will be officially released on YouTube than a BluRay these days. And DVD's of music videos are a bit hit or miss, sometimes they're worse than the YouTube postings!

I'm pretty sure the firewire output is a different encoding, but it shouldn't be very different from MPEG-2 output.


Yeah, that's a big annoyance for me. When YouTube is the only choice to watch a music video, the bar is set very low. They really just do not care about quality, period. And I don't see enough people complaining about it. The general public has gotten so used to subpar quality in the digital era. Why is is acceptable to see large macroblocks everywhere?

As for music video DVD releases, I own hundreds. There are some duds, but 99% are much better than YouTube, and the difference is not at all subtle.
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 Post subject: Re: New player acquisitions, repairs - advice on DVD recorde
PostPosted: 27 Apr 2019, 05:32 
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To illustrate this - I'll attach screenshots of a video with a scene that was shot on old film and has a lot of (intentional) grain. DVD first, Youtube second. Unfortunately, PNG is too big for forum attachments, so there is some JPEG compression that will minimize a bit of the stark difference, but still, night and day.


Last edited by alexpigment on 27 Apr 2019, 05:34, edited 2 times in total.
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