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Composite cleans up old VHS better than S-video?

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  • Composite cleans up old VHS better than S-video?

    I'm trying to capture a bunch of grainy old VHS home movies that were dubbed using very low-quality cables and a low quality VCR from Sony 8mm to VHS in the early 1990s. The tapes definitely display some color banding and flickering (flashing rainbow effect), and I'd hoped the ADVC300's "3D Y/C Separation" would help clean this up.

    However, the VCR I'm planning to use for playback has S-Video outputs, which, while theoretically higher quality than composite/RCA video, CANNOT make use of the ADVC300's Y/C Separation (because S-Video already carries the Y and C separately).

    Here's my question: Would I get better cleaning up of the VHS tapes if I used COMPOSITE instead of S-Video cables?

    The Sony 8mm tapes were originally dubbed to VHS using low-quality composite cables, so I'd imagine they suffered a lot of damage as they were written to tape using the low quality VCR.

    If by using a composite cable instead of S-Video to transfer the tapes to the ADVC300, would the "3D Y/C Separation" undo some of the damage done by the ORIGINAL composite dubbing?

    Thank you.

  • #2
    S-Video will be better because there is no need to split a signal that is already split

    if using composite, you need to split and degrade quality

    ideally, start shopping for a good TBC with NR
    Anton Strauss
    Antons Video Productions - Sydney

    EDIUS 9 WG with BM Mini Monitor 4k and BM Mini Recorder, Gigabyte X299 UD4 Pro, Intel Core i9 9960X 16 Core, 32 Threads @ 4.3Ghz, Corsair Water Cooling, Gigabyte RTX-2070 Super 3X 8GB Video Card, Samsung 860 Pro 512GB SSD for System, 8TB Samsung Raid0 SSD for Video, 2 Pioneer BDR-209 Blu-ray/DVD burners, Hotswap Bay for 3.5" Sata and 2.5" SSD, Phanteks Enthoo Pro XL Tower, Corsair 32GB DDR4 Ram, Win10 Pro

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    • #3
      The only time to even consider using Composite over S-Video is if the original source recording was stored in a composite manner (this has nothing to do with the original video signal input), for example, a laserdisc, and even then, usually S-Video is still better because of the better signal preservation along the signal path.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by erikl7 View Post
        I'm trying to capture a bunch of grainy old VHS home movies that were dubbed using very low-quality cables and a low quality VCR from Sony 8mm to VHS in the early 1990s. The tapes definitely display some color banding and flickering (flashing rainbow effect), and I'd hoped the ADVC300's "3D Y/C Separation" would help clean this up.

        However, the VCR I'm planning to use for playback has S-Video outputs, which, while theoretically higher quality than composite/RCA video, CANNOT make use of the ADVC300's Y/C Separation (because S-Video already carries the Y and C separately).

        Here's my question: Would I get better cleaning up of the VHS tapes if I used COMPOSITE instead of S-Video cables?

        The Sony 8mm tapes were originally dubbed to VHS using low-quality composite cables, so I'd imagine they suffered a lot of damage as they were written to tape using the low quality VCR.

        If by using a composite cable instead of S-Video to transfer the tapes to the ADVC300, would the "3D Y/C Separation" undo some of the damage done by the ORIGINAL composite dubbing?

        Thank you.
        I have done this myself with from a scart (video) to svideo (pc) you just have to make sure you have a two way cable as some are only one way. I got mine from www.thegadgetshop.net it is called the TV KIT.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by GrassValley_BH View Post
          The only time to even consider using Composite over S-Video is if the original source recording was stored in a composite manner (this has nothing to do with the original video signal input), for example, a laserdisc, and even then, usually S-Video is still better because of the better signal preservation along the signal path.
          Can you clarify this for me, as it seems to contradict something I was told on the forums a couple of years ago.

          Are you saying that a VHS video tape should be played out on an SVHS player through an S-VIDEO cable to ther ADVC? This will give better quality than composite from a high quality (but not S-VIDEO) player to the ADVC?

          In the past I was told to use composite out of the vcr unless I thought the Y/C separation by the VCR was significantly better than that provided by the ADVC?

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          • #6
            Originally posted by JackB View Post
            In the past I was told to use composite out of the vcr unless I thought the Y/C separation by the VCR was significantly better than that provided by the ADVC?
            That is correct, as long as the recorded signal (on tape, disc or whatever) is not already Y/C separated, then composite is a "straight off the media" signal. If the playback device has a better Y/C separation circuit than the receiver, then it is advantageous to separate on the player and use S-Video, otherwise it is better to let the receiving device do the Y/C separation and use composite.

            If the recorded signal is Y/C separated, then S-Video will always provide a better transfer since the signal is not Y/C combined then separated again.

            Avoiding any unnecessary combination/separation steps is akin to avoiding any unnecessary compression/decompression steps. The more you can avoid, the better the final signal or image quality, at least from a technical point of view.

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