Question about Sony SLV-N55 VHS VCR

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Sony SLV-640HF Problem

I'm hoping a VCR guru out there might have some ideas on a problem I am having with my little-used Sony SLV-640HF: When the cable signal is run through the VCR (VCR plugged in and off), the picture on the TV is snowy.  When using the tuner on the VCR, the picture is snowy. The VCR's OSD menus are crystal clear.  Pre-recorded tapes play crystal clear.  If I try to record off of cable, it plays snowy.  I have not tried using the video inputs, but it seems to me the problem lies somewhere in the tuner section. Any ideas on where to start to find the problem?  I hate to dump it. Thanks, Joe Woosley I have an slv-n55 with a similar problem. It has a built-in tuner; the cable comes into the house, into the VCR, and then from the VCR output on the VCR into the TV set so I can watch one program and record another at the same time. There is no "box" involved. The TV also has its own tuner. Until a few months ago, everything was working perfectly. No problems with picture or audio even when I was watching a different channel on the TV while the VCR was recording a different channel. Now I've started having audio and video problems with certain channels (mostly local channels, for some reason) with all others ok, even if I'm watching one channel and recording another. Hookups are tight, and no settings have been changed. All things being equal: 1. My cable connection is from Mediacom Cable. Could my problems have anything to do with the signal I'm receiving from the cable company during the run-up to digital conversion? 2. Is it possible for the built-in tuner in my VCR to fail selectively and affect some channels and not others?

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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.

Posted on May 11, 2009


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