Converter box/DVD/VCR/AV Audio Hookup

#1
I have a hookup question. I need to loop several components to my analog TV and new converter box. I have a DVD Recorder/VCR combo, a second VCR, and an A/V receiver. What is the best way to connect the antenna and A/V hookups through these components. I want to be able to record from either the DVD recorder or the stand-alone VCR. I also want to have the DVD & VCR hooked together to be able to dub VHS recordings between the VCR & DVD/VCR combo. I have a basic hookup now that works, but since connecting the digital converter, the picture is not as good coming through the DVD or VCR as it used to be. It used to be clear no matter which component I directed the picture through. Now, it is best only when I turn off the DVD or VCR and watch it through the TV alone. I'm wondering if there is a better progression through the components than I have to get a better picture.

Currently, I have the antenna running to the converter box, then to the VCR, to the DVD recorder, and finally to the TV. I have the A/V composite cords running from the converter to the VCR to the A/V receiver. I have another set of audio composite cords going from the TV to the receiver, and I have a third set of A/V COMPONENT cords going from the DVD to the TV. Finally, in order to dub tapes, I have another set of composite cords going between the VCR & DVD.

I probably have some unneeded connections, but if anyone can help either streamline my hookup or tell me what I did wrong, I'd appreciate it. I would especially like to know what, if anything, I can do to get a better picture through the DVD & VCR.

Thanks
 

Jason Fritz

Administrator
Staff member
#2
Hi Neil,
The poor quality picture you have described is the dreaded anti-piracy (anti-copy) technology that DVD manufactures have built into DVD players. DVD players are encoded wth anti-copy technology that will cause interference with your VCRs circuitry. It will prohibit you to copy DVD movies onto your VCR. This will also prevent you from connecting your VCR in a series to pass the DVD video signals to your television set.

You'll want to probably use a splitter to connect your converter box into your VCR with the other connection for the DVD/VCR Recorder. This will help you avoid having to purchase a seperate converter box for each of those devices. Does this help? From what I understand, you actually have a total of (2) VCRs right (which includes the DVD/VCR Recorder?
 
#3
Reply to Jay

Jay,
Thanks for your response. In answer to your question, I have two VCR's, which includes the DVD/VCR combo. The other is a stand-alone VCR. I was semi-aware of the situation you described regarding looping a DVD and VCR together, so that's why I looped my antenna through the VCR first before going to the DVD. And until I connected the converter box, the reception on the TV was fine. After I hooked up the converter box, it is no longer so. If I watch the TV through the DVD, the picture is not sharp at all. The only way I can describe it is it looks kind of blurred or blended. If I watch through the stand-alone VCR, the picture is better but I get snow on the screen. If I turn them both off and watch only through the TV, it is fine. Also, if I turn off the converter and watch through the DVD or VCR, the picture is also fine. I could watch the TV with the DVD or VCR turned off, but it becomes an issue is if I want to record something - the recording ends up looking like whatever picture I get either through the DVD or the VCR (i.e. either blurred or snowy).

I will try the splitter option and see if it helps. If you have any other input, I would appreciate it. I probably just need to play with the connections until I find one that works.

Thanks,
Neil
 

Aaron62

Contributor
Staff member
#4
Jay,
Thanks for your response. In answer to your question, I have two VCR's, which includes the DVD/VCR combo. The other is a stand-alone VCR. I was semi-aware of the situation you described regarding looping a DVD and VCR together, so that's why I looped my antenna through the VCR first before going to the DVD. And until I connected the converter box, the reception on the TV was fine. After I hooked up the converter box, it is no longer so. If I watch the TV through the DVD, the picture is not sharp at all. The only way I can describe it is it looks kind of blurred or blended. If I watch through the stand-alone VCR, the picture is better but I get snow on the screen. If I turn them both off and watch only through the TV, it is fine. Also, if I turn off the converter and watch through the DVD or VCR, the picture is also fine. I could watch the TV with the DVD or VCR turned off, but it becomes an issue is if I want to record something - the recording ends up looking like whatever picture I get either through the DVD or the VCR (i.e. either blurred or snowy).

I will try the splitter option and see if it helps. If you have any other input, I would appreciate it. I probably just need to play with the connections until I find one that works.

Thanks,
Neil
Neil, you may want to do a little research on an external RF modulator with all of those connections. I'm sure there are about 10 different combinations with your setup that you can actually use to connect everything together, but, the most important thing is keeping the VCR and DVD out of a single series or loop.
 

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