Saturday, April 12, 2014

A Scare

I had an incident yesterday. It was maybe an hour before I was heading out for an improv performance. I still had to shower, so I had relatively little time to spare It was at this time that I became keenly aware of how much noise my VCR was making. I don't mean the sound of the movie it was playing, of course. I mean the inner workings of the VCR itself. Even turning up the sound of the TV, the whining and whirring of the player were more than a match.

I noticed a flutter on the screen, and I decided that enough was enough. As it happens, I had two other VCRs sitting around. I had earlier determined them also to be broken, but with that other player acting up, I wondered if they were as bad as I thought. Maybe sitting idle had cured them of their ills, or I could figure out what what wrong with at least one of them and thus have a satisfactorily working player once more. It was worth a shot.

I never got anywhere with that whirring one. It plays, but I just can't bear the noise and the fluttering. One of the other players displays an error message reading "E4" and chews up any tape I put in it. I was unable to really uncover the source of the problem, let alone eradicate it. I read in some places what that error is supposed to mean, but I couldn't make any sense of it. I haven't entirely given up hope on that one, but I don't know what to do.

The third one had been playing tapes for a couple seconds and then quitting. For a bit I thought I had it going again (quite by accident, as I'd been pounding with my fist on another VCR that was sitting on top of it). I found that it was still having problems, and I'd about given up on it all over again, but I finally resolved to start opening up VCRs, and once I cracked open this one I discovered that the label had fallen off a tape and into the workings of the VCR.

I extracted the label and found the thing was running better, but not perfectly. I then wondered if running a head cleaner tape would do any good. I tried it and found that it did plenty of good. The player was as good as new, so now I have at least one. I'd like to get three good players so that I can have one in the bedroom, one in the living room and a third for supplementary purposes. All that's a little down the line. Decent VCRs aren't necessarily really easy to come by at any reasonable price, and I'm getting picky.

No comments:

Post a Comment

What say you, netizen?