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noggin14,946 posts since 26 Jun 2001
D-VHS decks were sold in the US with Firewire inputs and outputs that could be fed to/from cable (and modified satellite) set top boxes and would record a lossless stream of a single channel (which had been decrypted I believe). Many D-VHS decks sold in the US didn't have MPEG2 encoders - so couldn't record baseband composite NTSC or HD component signals in high quality (eventually some did have this functionality). Some early decks didn't have MPEG2 decoders either - so you had to play your recordings back into your cable box (for it to decode).

ISTR there may have been a route to recording terrestrial 8VSB ATSC as well. It had a moderate degree of success in this niche format for HD archive and time shifting. It was possible to ingest recordings made on D-VHS into PCs ISTR (though the copy protection on some cable broadcasts inhibited this ISTR)

The D-VHS format in the US was allied closely to the encrypted D-Theater movie format that allowed for HD movie releases on VHS shape tapes.


European D-VHS decks didn't have any way of taking in an external transport stream lossslessy - they only had MPEG2 hardware encoders fed either via SD composite/S-Video (possibly component - but I think the lack of RGB SCART was an issue on at least one model?) and possibly also DV25 via Firewire (which was re-encoded to MPEG2). As HD hadn't' really launched in Europe, and DVB-T was still relatively new, D-VHS was really only sold as a higher-quality / longer-recording SD format and went nowhere as it was so expensive...
2
UKnews and Inspector Sands gave kudos
noggin14,946 posts since 26 Jun 2001

BBC Bristol used DVHS on Antiques Road show,


No - Antiques Roadshow didn't use D-VHS, they used JVC's Digital-S (aka D9) format. (By then BBC Bristol's OB base had closed and they used a Kendal Avenue Type VII?)

Digital-S/D9 used a VHS form factor (and larger) cassette to record a 4:2:2 Intra DV50 bitstream (not a 25Mbs 4:2:0 LongGOP MPEG2 stream as per D-VHS). The results were identical to DVC Pro 50 (the 50Mbs 4:2:2 DVC format that EastEnders used) and visually very similar to IMX50 and Digital Betacam.

D-VHS was a consumer format, and would have been a nightmare as a broadcast format with it's LongGOP format (insert editing would have required a lot of buffering and GOP mangling)

Digital-S was a broadcast format, and used an intra-frame codec (so insert editing was easy), and the range included broadcast VTRs and a camcorder (which was dreadful).

Arguably Digital-S was the 1/2" equivalent to the Sony 1/2" Digital Betacam format (just as M-format was the 'VHS' answer to Betacam, and MII was the their answer to Betacam SP), however Panasonic had already moved on to the DVC family.
Arguably JVC then pivoted the D9 format to compete with the DVC Pro range - as just as DVC Pro HD used a 100Mbs DV codec to add (reduced resolution) HD compatibility to their DVC Pro range, JVC introduced a D-9 HD based on (I think the same) 100Mbs DV codec. There were arguments that D9 was more robust than DVC Pro because of the larger tape area used.

(Just as HD Cam was 1440x1080 3:1:1, DVC Pro HD 100 was either 1440x1080/50 or 1280x1080/60 subsampled)
Last edited by noggin on 18 April 2020 8:24am - 3 times in total
1
UKnews gave kudos
noggin14,946 posts since 26 Jun 2001
Thanks for the correction ..... I knew the form factor was the same ...
The DV50 formats were not widely recognised .... Or used ...


Indeed - DV25 (in either 4:1:1 or 4:2:0) was 'good enough' for News and low-end docs, and for higher-end production DigiBeta (which used a higher bitrate proprietary codec that remained sealed within the VTR, which only had baseband I/O) was used for acquisition and delivery, and inter-frame codecs used for post (DNX, ProRes etc.)

DV50 performed largely as well as the higher bitrate DigiBeta visually - but Sony made the better cameras - so DigiBeta camcorders became the de facto standard, and Digital Betacam had become a de facto delivery standard (apart from Channel 4's blip of using D5 because of their fear of codec concatenation impacting on their new 34Mbs (?) component transmitter circuits). Sony were very careful not to make a camcorder format that would have cannibalised their high-end DigiBeta sales (as DV50 models would) - leaving you with a choice of DV25 or DigiBeta if you wanted a one-piece Sony camcorder.

IMX33 and 50 could have made more in roads - but by the time it arrived everyone was looking towards HD production. IMX33 was in widespread use as a News-quality SD server format (Quantel used it in their news editing platform - and AIUI it outperformed DV25) and IMX50 is the SD standard used for DPP (largely used for delivery of archive shows). The 1/2" Sony IMX VTRs are a very neat cul-de-sac to go down - and it was the point at which Sony 1/2" formats finally really embraced native compressed data interchange?

DVC Pro 50 only really saw use at the BBC on EastEnders ISTR (where it was used as a location camcorder format and ISTR DV50 codecs were used on the Ingex open source hard drive recorders the BBC used for a while). I'm guessing some DVC Pro 50 VTRs were used as backups for this - but that delivery was on DigiBeta.
1
UKnews gave kudos
Technologist152 posts since 10 Oct 2018
London London
SABC was also a user of DVC pro 50 ....
but as you point out for a total system Sony had things well Sewn up with DigiBeta....
Of course the USA was well stuck with BetaSP....
( the BBC owned more DBetas than in the whole of the USA)!
And there was also the move to record directly to file / Avid
Or for quick turn round on EVS
So DV50 did not get a foothold ...
And then there was HD .....
Ne1L C1,825 posts since 11 Sep 2011
D-VHS decks were sold in the US with Firewire inputs and outputs that could be fed to/from cable (and modified satellite) set top boxes and would record a lossless stream of a single channel (which had been decrypted I believe). Many D-VHS decks sold in the US didn't have MPEG2 encoders - so couldn't record baseband composite NTSC or HD component signals in high quality (eventually some did have this functionality). Some early decks didn't have MPEG2 decoders either - so you had to play your recordings back into your cable box (for it to decode).

ISTR there may have been a route to recording terrestrial 8VSB ATSC as well. It had a moderate degree of success in this niche format for HD archive and time shifting. It was possible to ingest recordings made on D-VHS into PCs ISTR (though the copy protection on some cable broadcasts inhibited this ISTR)

The D-VHS format in the US was allied closely to the encrypted D-Theater movie format that allowed for HD movie releases on VHS shape tapes.


European D-VHS decks didn't have any way of taking in an external transport stream lossslessy - they only had MPEG2 hardware encoders fed either via SD composite/S-Video (possibly component - but I think the lack of RGB SCART was an issue on at least one model?) and possibly also DV25 via Firewire (which was re-encoded to MPEG2). As HD hadn't' really launched in Europe, and DVB-T was still relatively new, D-VHS was really only sold as a higher-quality / longer-recording SD format and went nowhere as it was so expensive...



If that had been possible then it may have looked something like this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vkZX6Nt4NYs
noggin14,946 posts since 26 Jun 2001

Or for quick turn round on EVS
So DV50 did not get a foothold ...
And then there was HD .....


Yep - ironically DV100 has done FAR better than DV50 did. For ages it was the only HD codec that bridged the Avid / FCP / Prem Pro and Windows / Mac divide... (Just). It's still the standard codec in BBC News believe it or not - with all its lovely 1440x1080 subsampled loveliness.

You'd see DV100 clearly in use on EVSs that had chroma key stings, as there was a thin line on the right of frame that would appear when a CSO (aka chroma key) sting was keyed in waiting to be run. EVS had a bug (feature...) that meant the right hand column of samples had blanked chroma (so the final column was B&W only) due to a 1440->1920 resample... As a result the CSO magenta or green background didn't fully key on the right hand column... Was a feature of Strictly for quite a few years...
noggin14,946 posts since 26 Jun 2001
D-VHS decks were sold in the US with Firewire inputs and outputs that could be fed to/from cable (and modified satellite) set top boxes and would record a lossless stream of a single channel (which had been decrypted I believe). Many D-VHS decks sold in the US didn't have MPEG2 encoders - so couldn't record baseband composite NTSC or HD component signals in high quality (eventually some did have this functionality). Some early decks didn't have MPEG2 decoders either - so you had to play your recordings back into your cable box (for it to decode).

ISTR there may have been a route to recording terrestrial 8VSB ATSC as well. It had a moderate degree of success in this niche format for HD archive and time shifting. It was possible to ingest recordings made on D-VHS into PCs ISTR (though the copy protection on some cable broadcasts inhibited this ISTR)

The D-VHS format in the US was allied closely to the encrypted D-Theater movie format that allowed for HD movie releases on VHS shape tapes.


European D-VHS decks didn't have any way of taking in an external transport stream lossslessy - they only had MPEG2 hardware encoders fed either via SD composite/S-Video (possibly component - but I think the lack of RGB SCART was an issue on at least one model?) and possibly also DV25 via Firewire (which was re-encoded to MPEG2). As HD hadn't' really launched in Europe, and DVB-T was still relatively new, D-VHS was really only sold as a higher-quality / longer-recording SD format and went nowhere as it was so expensive...



If that had been possible then it may have looked something like this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vkZX6Nt4NYs


Wow - that must have been a bit of a turkey, launching as an SD-only recorder just as HD was about to launch...
robertclark1251,591 posts since 13 Jan 2009
STV Central Reporting Scotland
It's hard to believe that, at first, films on video did NOT have a BBFC certificate. It was only in the mid 1980s (someone will have the exact date I'm sure), that the BBFC started to issue certificates for items on video. Some firms folded, wheras the likes of Guild Home Video went and got everything certified. Guild were also lucky to have the video distribution rights for the likes of Thomas the Tank Engine, which proved very popular, and no doubt helped fund the costs for getting other things recertified.

I also remember the two video shops that used to exist here in Cardenden. One was called Video Den, and is now a hairdressers, next to a funeral parlour. The other was almost across the road, JJ video, and is now a fishmongers. It reminds me of an advert for the Natwest bank from 1991, "the greengrocers son", where the man was saying his dad had a greengrocers. He then says "Nah, it's a video shop now!". Love to know what it is nowadays!