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Set Up New Set Top Box Along With Dvd & Vcr


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#1 spalmills

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 05:10 PM

Hi guys

Can you help with something please.

I am going to set up a set top box for my mother.
The issue is that the oldish CRT TV (TEAC) that she has only has one INPUT which is a SCART connection that has got a little SCART to RCA box plugged into it with red yellow white.

The issue i have is this.

I have to connect Set top box to TV via Yellow Red White - easy
Then the Loop from the set top box to the VCR which is fine.

Then i have to connect the DVD player to the TV and also thethe VCR picture back to the TV. All by composite connections

She doesnt have a scart cable but i dont know if buying one would allow set top box to tv, vcr back to tv and dvd to tv.

Can anyone temm me what the simple solution is - would scrat solve all this or would i need to get one of those multi a/c connector box thingos.

Cheers

#2 moes486

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Posted 01 November 2009 - 05:31 PM

Can anyone temm me what the simple solution is - would scrat solve all this or would i need to get one of those multi a/c connector box thingos.


Yes, sounds like you need an A/V switch.
e.g. you can usually pick one up starting from around $10 from those $2 shops. Like this one : http://www.sansai.co...asp?prod_id=243

#3 spalmills

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Posted 02 November 2009 - 02:05 PM

Yes, sounds like you need an A/V switch.
e.g. you can usually pick one up starting from around $10 from those $2 shops. Like this one : http://www.sansai.co...asp?prod_id=243


Thanks for your reply Moes. Gee i must have been having a good typing day the other day. Im surprised that you even knew what i meant.

Well i did get one of the a/v switch boxes - it was a 3 input to 1 output which did the trick as far as getting the STB, DVD and VCR displayed on TV.

My next question is

How do i get the VCR to record shows from STB? I have the loop out cable from STB to VCR and composite outputs from VCR back to A/V switch box.
I dont know if i have to scan the vcr frequencies until i get the picture from the set top box - is this what i have to do?


OK thinking after the info above - if i use the composite output from STB and connect to VCR input (rather than connecting to a/v switch box) then would the picture come through a particular channel on VCR which could then be recorded?

Edited by spalmills, 02 November 2009 - 02:40 PM.


#4 moes486

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Posted 02 November 2009 - 05:20 PM

OK thinking after the info above - if i use the composite output from STB and connect to VCR input (rather than connecting to a/v switch box) then would the picture come through a particular channel on VCR which could then be recorded?


Well, on my old Sony VCR, the input is called "LINE" (which shows as "channel" "L"). There's also an "Input select" button on my VCR's remote. Pressing it toggles between the normal TV channels and the LINE input. Your VCR might work slightly differently, (including using different terms like possibly using "A/V" instead of "LINE" input), but yes, there should be some way of doing what you want on your VCR.

This setup should let you record from STB to VCR, but there are a few drawbacks :
1) you'll have to have the VCR turned fully on (not just on standby mode), to watch the STB, even if you are not recording.
2) you won't be able to record an analog channel on your VCR, and *at the same time* watch something on the STB.

If these limitations bother you, you can get around it by getting *another* A/V switch, and use it in the reverse direction to split one set of inputs to two outputs. You use this second A/V switch to split the STB's output into two sets - one set to the VCR, and another to the TV (or rather, in your case, to one of the inputs to the other A/V switch). This is the setup I use - it works, but is fairly messy, and many times I've recorded an hour of black screen due to forgetting to put the A/V switch in the correct position. Maybe this is why many people are fans of PVRs :)

#5 spalmills

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Posted 02 November 2009 - 08:47 PM

Well, on my old Sony VCR, the input is called "LINE" (which shows as "channel" "L"). There's also an "Input select" button on my VCR's remote. Pressing it toggles between the normal TV channels and the LINE input. Your VCR might work slightly differently, (including using different terms like possibly using "A/V" instead of "LINE" input), but yes, there should be some way of doing what you want on your VCR.

This setup should let you record from STB to VCR, but there are a few drawbacks :
1) you'll have to have the VCR turned fully on (not just on standby mode), to watch the STB, even if you are not recording.
2) you won't be able to record an analog channel on your VCR, and *at the same time* watch something on the STB.

If these limitations bother you, you can get around it by getting *another* A/V switch, and use it in the reverse direction to split one set of inputs to two outputs. You use this second A/V switch to split the STB's output into two sets - one set to the VCR, and another to the TV (or rather, in your case, to one of the inputs to the other A/V switch). This is the setup I use - it works, but is fairly messy, and many times I've recorded an hour of black screen due to forgetting to put the A/V switch in the correct position. Maybe this is why many people are fans of PVRs :)

thanks very much moes i truly appreciate your effort with all this. i will consider both options and check them out.
i'll let you know how i get on

thanks again buddy

#6 deuxliquid

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 07:28 PM

Yes, sounds like you need an A/V switch.
e.g. you can usually pick one up starting from around $10 from those $2 shops. Like this one : http://www.sansai.co...asp?prod_id=243

What is A/v switch?

#7 moes486

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Posted 13 November 2009 - 09:15 AM

What is A/v switch?


AV refers to Audio Visual. This is the set of red, white and yellow cables that carry the sound and video. An AV switch (or selector), is a small box which lets you select which set of AV inputs is connected (at any given time) to a single set of outputs.

#8 diesel

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Posted 13 November 2009 - 11:31 AM

Think of it like a double adapter for AV leads, becasue you don't have enough AV inputs on the back of your TV or AV reciever

#9 zef

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Posted 14 November 2009 - 03:07 PM

I'm glad I came across this thread as I have to do pretty much the same for my Mum. She currently has an analog crt tv, a vcr and a dvd player connected. She wants to be able to watch all the new digital channels (it doesn't matter whether it's HD or SD, she just wants to view the channels). I've been reading up so much on all of this and it gets confusing so I just want to clarify a couple of things if I may.

If I buy her a SD set top box will she be able to view all the extra channels or are some only available if you have a HD set top box (it doesn't matter if she can only view them in SD, as long as she can view them).

Secondly, will she still be able to tape one channel and view another at the same time? This is a major point as she has friends who say she won't be able to do this anymore. I'm unclear as to why that would be so I need some expert opinion.

Really appreciate the help.

#10 moes486

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Posted 15 November 2009 - 11:41 PM

If I buy her a SD set top box will she be able to view all the extra channels or are some only available if you have a HD set top box (it doesn't matter if she can only view them in SD, as long as she can view them).


Generally speaking, the answer is yes, the SD box will let you view all the extra content. Have a look at the first post at : http://www.dtvforum....p...t=0&start=0 . The SD box will not be able to pick up channels marked "HD" in the list. But it won't usually matter, because most of the HD channels show the same content as their SD counterparts. e.g. channel 1 (One HD) shows the same content as 12 (One SD). There may be some minor exceptions. e.g. I thought I'd read somewhere that ABC HD shows *national* news at 7pm, wheres ABC1 SD shows *state* news. If it were me, I'd pay the extra dollars and get a HD box, just in case things change in future.

Secondly, will she still be able to tape one channel and view another at the same time? This is a major point as she has friends who say she won't be able to do this anymore.


In the analog world :
Think of your VCR as having an analog tuner. And your CRT TV also has an analog tuner. So you can happily watch one channel and record another at the same time, since you've got two analog tuners which can be tuned to two different analog channels.

Now with digital in the mix :
Neither your VCR nor CRT TV has a digital tuner. They both depend on the STB to provide the digital signal (typically via the A/V, or white/red/yellow cables). STB's only have one tuner (unless it is a PVR), so, this means it will be impossible for both your TV and VCR to receive different digital channels at the same time from this STB. So you won't be able to tape and record different *digital* channels at the same time.

However, it is possible to set things up (with the right number of AV switch boxes, antenna cables etc), so that you can record a digital channel via the STB, and simultaneously watch an analog channel, OR record an analog channel and simultaneously watch a digital channel.

If being able to record a digital channel, and simultaneously watching another digital channel is important, (in cases when neither of the digital channels are available on analog), then you should probably look into getting a PVR.

Edited by moes486, 15 November 2009 - 11:46 PM.


#11 pgdownload

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Posted 16 November 2009 - 08:55 AM

Hi Zef,

At this I'd stage buy a HD STB. It should only cost $50 or so more than a HD one and then all channels are definitely available (now and into the future).

As for combining a STB and VCR, this is definitely doable, however its pretty awkward to use. For example to record something and watch another channel you need to do the following:

1) First up the antenna will need to be split (simple 'T' plug $5) and one lead to the STB and the other to the TV.

2) Second note that here only one device can get the signal from the STB (ie your Mum could watch the old analogue on the TV and record all the digital channels or visa versa.) Assuming STB => VCR to record and watch she'd need to

1) Turn the STB to the required channel
2) Turn on the VCR and start it recording
3) Turn the TV to its analogue tuner to watch.
4) Switch back the TV to the DVDR input to watch the recording.

********************************

So yes she could record and watch but one would be the analogue source and one would be digital. I always suggest in this situation to get a twin tuner PVR. This become the single item (remote) your mum needs to use. Plug the areial into it and the PVR in to the TV and she has full record/watch capability for all digital channels. She can set timers like on the VCR. She can even set two things to record at once.

A HD PVR though costs around $500 or more. However a good SD PVR should cost around $200 and might be the go?

Regards

Peter Gillespie

#12 zef

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Posted 16 November 2009 - 03:43 PM

Thank you very much for your replies, both moes486 and pqdownload. Very much appreciated and clarified a few things for me.

I would much rather go with the pvr solution however my Mum has a heap of video tapes she doesn't want to get rid of and can't obtain anymore. That's the main reason for wanting to hold on to the vcr but I think I might have another chat to her and she how she feels. I know she would appreciate reducing the remotes so that is certainly in the pvr favour. I did look into the cost of transferring the tapes she wants to keep to dvd but it wasn't going to be economically viable. I know you can do this yourself but it sounds awfully time consuming.

Anyway, I now understand what is needed and why for all the options I was considering, so once again thanks. :)

#13 pgdownload

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Posted 16 November 2009 - 07:27 PM

I would much rather go with the pvr solution however my Mum has a heap of video tapes she doesn't want to get rid of and can't obtain anymore.

A common scenario. In practice a VCR and PVR can work side by side without any hassles. The VCR simply becomes a 'play' box that plug into the TV. If your Mum wants to watch an old tape then swith the TV to the VCR input and watch it. Otherwise, she records and plays stuff in the PVR. Usually people find after a month or two they haven't touched the VCR and you can safetly disconnect it :)

FWIW I might have a Topfield 5000 SD PVR you could buy second hand ($150 + postage) that might be a good fit. Let me know.

Regards

Peter Gillespie

#14 zef

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Posted 16 November 2009 - 08:43 PM

In practice a VCR and PVR can work side by side without any hassles. The VCR simply becomes a 'play' box that plug into the TV.


Ah, that might be the way to go then.

With regard to your offer, I think I would like to get her a HD pvr with dual tuners so she's basically covered, however thank you very much nonetheless.

You've been a great help. Now to go and read up on what HD pvr dual tuner to get her.

EDIT: Oh, I see the Topfield 5000 does have dual tuners, it's only missing the HD part. That makes it a lot more enticing. I just keep getting told to get HD because more and more programs will only be available through the HD channels and I don't want to have to explain to my Mum (now or in the future) that she can't watch something she wants because she only has SD.

Edited by zef, 16 November 2009 - 08:49 PM.


#15 diesel

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Posted 16 November 2009 - 08:59 PM

I just keep getting told to get HD because more and more programs will only be available through the HD channels and I don't want to have to explain to my Mum (now or in the future) that she can't watch something she wants because she only has SD.

Pretty much every thing on the HD channels are also simulcast on an equivlent SD channel. Get HD for the PQ improvement (when broadcast), not for extra content

#16 burningdesire

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Posted 22 November 2009 - 04:39 PM

Hi, we have Toshiba Territorial Set Top Box that is flashing HE. Does anybody have any idea.

#17 Dupeykaz

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 09:44 PM

Thank you very much for your replies, both moes486 and pqdownload. Very much appreciated and clarified a few things for me.

I would much rather go with the pvr solution however my Mum has a heap of video tapes she doesn't want to get rid of and can't obtain anymore. That's the main reason for wanting to hold on to the vcr but I think I might have another chat to her and she how she feels. I know she would appreciate reducing the remotes so that is certainly in the pvr favour. I did look into the cost of transferring the tapes she wants to keep to dvd but it wasn't going to be economically viable. I know you can do this yourself but it sounds awfully time consuming.

Anyway, I now understand what is needed and why for all the options I was considering, so once again thanks. :)


Hi Zef
You can keep your mum's VCR plugged into TV and add PVR either HD or SD to VCR via red, yellow, & white leads and tune VCR into set top box to view (can't remember how I did this). She would need to turn both VCR & set top box on to view via TV, but works and she can view video tapes and record via VCR whatever is showing on tv screen. I have had this set up for my mum for years and is going well. I have two antennaes one on VCR & one on STB to make reception better.
Regards
Dupeykaz