Question about Zenith VR4257HF VCR

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Possible Video swich failure?

During playback, my vcr's video signal fails to switch over thus continuing to display what is on my tuner. However, the audio DOES switch over like it's supposed to. Is this a common problem? The VCR is getting some age, but I hardly use it because I mostly deal with DVD's these days. I'm hoping that the circuitry responsible for playback video switching is in the form of a bad connection or easy-to-replace components and is not part of a static-sensetive and expensive IC. If simple, I see no reason to buy a new vcr being that no new machine can compare to this one. I'm also expecting to transfer any irreplacable must haves in my VHS collection to DVD/Blu-Ray within a couple years. And since I've hardly used this machine, a fix should buy me the time I need until I phase out my VHS. I'd appreciate it if someone can help me. J

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SOURCE: Need help recording with my Zenith VR4206hf

Depends on what you have for digital cable, but assuming you have a connection for that, you don't need to worry about the other inputs, just find the on-screen menu page that selects the proper input.

Posted on Dec 29, 2007

  • 291 Answers

SOURCE: dubbing from vcr to vcr

Connect with RCA cable to RCA jacks\plugs::
output [player] audio to INPUT [recorder]
OUTPUT [player] Video to INPUT [recorder]
Place blank tape in RECORDER, Tape that you want to record from into PLAYER.Press Record [recorder machine], wait one second, press PAUSE.( thats to give record tape "breathing" space.) Set up your player tape to start playing. When you know what you want to record, press PAUSE again to begining recording. Press PAUSE after the recorded section to install 2nd tape, etc. etc.
NOTE:: some VCRs use PAUSE 2nd time to release and continue recording, while some machines you must press RECORD button again to release PAUSE. you must expirement before begining your project.

Posted on Aug 16, 2008

  • 1 Answer

SOURCE: want to purchase a vcr/dvd recorder combo for our hdtv

decided not to buy one

Posted on Jan 19, 2009

  • 4 Answers

SOURCE: No video on VHS tapes playback. on a Zenith VR4257HF

Sounds like the video heads are worn and time to replace them. You can try Asti Magnetics. The part number you are looking for is "378". Sells for $55 plus shipping. A bit cheaper but quality parts. I've dealt with them in the past. You can decide if the VCR is worth it to repair.

Posted on May 04, 2009

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turn DTV tuner on (VCR should have a TV\VCR switch that makes signal coming from tuner BYPASS VHS right into TV) note:: change channel FROM tuner.You should be able to record by placing a blank tape and pressing RECORD.
2ND. DTV tuner, VCR, should have a RCA in\out connections...Audio & video.You need a RF\RCA bypass switch. It has a INput with RCA connections to a RF signal out that goes to the RF Input of analog TV

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The VCR would then connect to the HDTVs inputs (yellow, white) for playback.

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Provided that you have given a good confirmed signal into the VCR or is using the tuner to record. If so then the fault is within the VCR recording biasing of the signal. The rrecorrded signals ahve to eb written to the tapes after mixing up the spectrum of information that comes along. failure of theprocessing IC must be the fault to this and will require expert testing within the VCR for signal trace before we can pinpoint. I hope you will need expert help to confirm onthe head amp section/ video processing stages preferably with the manual in hand. Helpful to decide? Good day

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If you mean during playback, then all you need to is clean the Video Head with Servisol Video 40.

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you have to connect VCR output cable to your TV input, thats all, it will be in series, if u want to record any program then on your TV and on record switch of your VCR.

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I would be inclined to say that there are only two likely problems that you may be encountering. Either you are getting a bad signal feed, or the connectors on the cable are getting old and need replaced. The connection to the cable can break down over time, especially if they have been connected and reconnected several times. I cannot rule out problems caused by the transition to DTV, but that doesnt seem likely if there are only a few channels affected. As far as "selective failure" of the VCR's built-in tuner, I would say that that is also a very unlikely source for the problem If the tuning components inside the tuner had gone out, I would expect to see a problem on all channels watched through the system. If you are having this problem on all channels of the sony, then the tuner could surely be the problem, but if you haven't used it much that would indicate a problem at manufacturing, however since at least one of the machines is working fine on some channels and not on all of them, I would suspect the connections or the signal from your cable company. Contact them first ands see if they are having signal issues, if not try replacing your connectors.

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1 Answer

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You don't say what kind of tv,model,etc. or if the tv tuner is 'solid state', push button, knob type channel changer.
If you REALLY, REALLY have to use the tv through the the signal [antenna, cable box, cable antenna (signal) in vcr RF a blank vhs tape to record, use the RCA jacks[AUDIO & VIDEO] in back of the VCR to INPUT of TV video & audio ( if you have then ) While you are recording, you will be able to see the tv program.
p.s. place the TV\VCR switch to vcr.

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1 Answer

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Because the cable signal is OK, this eliminates the tuner as your problem and leaves the power supply which is a common problem. It is a switch mode type which often have trouble maintaining control of its output voltages and produce trouble downstream in the video circuitry. Either the power supply is failing which can be wholesale replaced for about a $150, or something somewhere else is failing and loading down the supply causing it to overwork. Usually in this case, you can hear a whine noise if you listen close.

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RCA audio/video receiver fallacies......

Sounds like overheating. Make sure it is clean and has good ventilation. Try putting it in a cold location and see if that makes a difference. Or get some cold spray and see if that helps it to turn back on quickly after it fails. If it works properly, but is just shutting off, possibly the output amps are starting to lose efficiency and if nothing is done will continue to degrade until you have a real failure, which will at least be easier to troubleshoot.

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1 Answer

VCR tuner cannot tune in my cable channels

It is working as designed. The purpose of your cable box is to take in a wire containing all of the possible channels you might watch, and then extract *one* channel, and force it to appear as channel 3. If you connect the cable directly to the VCR, then the VCR's "tuner" (ie, channel selector) has an opportunity to extract any channel it wants. But... as you point out, your VCR won't be able to "see" any of the digital channels. So... if your goal is to be able to watch any of the digital channels, the signal must pass through your cable box, which will put the selected channel on channel 3. There is no value in going from the VCR to the cable box, since the VCR's tuner will have already filtered out all but one channel. It would be helpful to make a list of what your useage goals really are, since there are so many different ways to hook these things up. Are you interested in: - watching digital channels? - recording digital channels? - watching one channel while recording another? - using higher quality video signals (composite, s-video, component, etc) rather than RF (ie, channel 3) And so on. Keep in mind that you have *three* tuners: Your cable box, your VCR, and your TV. It sounds like only your cable box can tune in the digital channels. If your cable box puts out any non-RF signal, then the best choice would be to go: Coaxial Wire -> Cable Box -> Video Connection -> VCR -> Video Connection -> TV, with the VCR and the TV both set to "video". Then you would only use the cable box as a tuner, the VCR would only see the tuned channel (via video in), and the TV would see the same channel (or whatever tape you are playing) on its video input.

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