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Thread: Sony EV-C200 comet streaks on white peak unique to Sony TRV-138 camcorder? Help!

  1. #1
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    Default Sony EV-C200 comet streaks on white peak unique to Sony TRV-138 camcorder? Help!

    I need a real expert's help here.

    I shot many of my home videos on a Sony TRV-138 camcorder. I recently decided to convert my Hi8 tapes to digital. I bought a Sony EV-C200 Hi8 VCR to use as a workhorse to play the tapes back into my Dell XPS 420. I wanted the S-video output that the camcorder does not have. The computer capture works great, but on playback I noticed these strange comet looking white streaks continually to the right of white saturation areas.

    I thought it was a problem with the VCR, and eventually I purchased a second, supposedly unused EV-C200 and noticed the same white peak problem! Now I've got a lot of money in VCRs! These are not cheap even used.

    Then I rigged up an experiment. I purposefully shot a scene with a lot of white saturation using the TRV-138, and then the very same scene using a somewhat older but top-of-the-line for it's day Sony CCD-TRV99. Both scenes were shot using the same tape, one after the other.

    I played the tape back in my newer EV-C200 and the scene recorded with the TRV-138 had the comet streak on the white peak, but the scene recorded with the TRV99 did not.

    I also played a tape that was shot using a Sharp Viewcam, and a tape shot by someone else, both with white saturation in places, through the EV-C200, and there were no comet streaks on the white peak.

    I shot a further white saturation scene on a second TRV-138 and the comet streaks were there on playback on the EV-C200.

    So, is it possible that I could have two perfectly good EV-C200 Hi8 VCRs, but this particular model of Sony camcorder, the TRV-138, records white saturation in such a way that the EV-C200 shows comet streaks on playback?

    I need a real wizard's help here.

    Oh, and by the way, I can play any of my TRV-138 made tapes back on the TRV99 and they play perfectly with no streaking. Just to make the situation even more confounding for me.

    What's going on? Any help would be hugely appreciated.

  2. #2
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    Quite a puzzling situation! I don't have a solid answer, only a few suggestions...

    Just to be sure, you're not experiencing interlacing streaks, are you? ...






    If not, then it could be something to do with the capture card not being able to transport the data quickly enough. If this is the case, try changing the colour space.

    What capture card have you got, and have you tried recording the output of the camcorder directly?

  3. #3
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    No, they are not interlacing streaks. This has nothing to do with the computer at all. The comet streaks show up only to the right of white peak areas and they happen when I connect the VCR directly to a television.





    Quote Originally Posted by MatthewPerks View Post
    Quite a puzzling situation! I don't have a solid answer, only a few suggestions...

    Just to be sure, you're not experiencing interlacing streaks, are you? ...


    If not, then it could be something to do with the capture card not being able to transport the data quickly enough. If this is the case, try changing the colour space.

    What capture card have you got, and have you tried recording the output of the camcorder directly?

  4. #4
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    Can you post a screen grab of the problem on here?

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    Default Here is a screen grab of the comet streaking problem!

    Here it is. Look at the right edge of the mouse. And again, this very same saturated mouse shot with a Sony CCD-TRV99 did not show streaking on playback on the same VCR.












    Quote Originally Posted by Nikosony View Post
    Can you post a screen grab of the problem on here?
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    that just looks over exposed to me.

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    Looks like over exposure as said above but the three lines on the side of the mouse are weird looking. They look like streaking as imaging chips in older camcorders couldn't cope with really high levels of light. Were you panning at the time?

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    Default Thanks for the first genuine insight!

    Hi Nikosony,

    Well, you're the first person to actually understand the problem here.

    To answer you question, I was moving the camera. That is, it was not on a tripod. I'm not sure exactly what "panning" means technically, but the camera was moving slowly as I tried to maximize the constrast between the over exposed mouse and the black mousepad.

    As far as the "older" camcorder is concerned, it was a TRV-138 purchased in 2005. This was as far as I know the last Hi8 camera before they all went away. It was also the bottom of the product line, however.

    The TRV-99 that shot the same scene, way overexposed, with no streaking on playback from the VCR was the top of the line for it's day, though it is more of a circa 1999 unit.

    And to it's credit, the very lightweight 11 year old Sharp Viewcam simply won't overexpose the shot. I pointed at the same thing and the playback was perfect, not overexposed at all.

    So, maybe the word "cheaper" is more appropriate than "older"? What do you think?





    Quote Originally Posted by Nikosony View Post
    Looks like over exposure as said above but the three lines on the side of the mouse are weird looking. They look like streaking as imaging chips in older camcorders couldn't cope with really high levels of light. Were you panning at the time?

  9. #9
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    Default Mystery Solved! I think anyway.

    The tape(s) that have the comet streaking on over exposure were 8mm tapes that were used in a Hi8 camcorder TRV-138.

    I bought a tape explicitely marked Hi8 and recorded some test overexposed stuff in the TRV-138 and then played it back in the EV-C200 VCR and it played back perfectly. Here's my chance to use an emoticon.

    So I was an idiot, but all my equipment seems to be working well and more importantly is resaleable for good money if I ever want to.

  10. #10
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    I don't think that's the reason why you are getting those lines in your picture. You can put an 8mm tape into a Hi-8 camcorder and it will recognise it as an 8mm tape and record lower quality video onto it.

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