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Sony SVT-3050 Time Lapse VCR operating question

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I bought a used Sony SVT-3050 time lapse VCR for dirt cheap and no operating manual...


My question is how do you make the "REC CHECK" button work? I think you press this in combination with another button??? and then the tape will rewind a little, play back a little, then return to recording from where it left off?


I press the button (while it is recording) and nothing happens.

I stop it, press the button, and nothing happens.


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Based on a Google search I did, your time lapse vcr specifications are listed here:





Up to 168 hours (1 week) record/playback capability (T-120)

Over 300 lines (Color), 350 lines (B/W) horizontal resolution

RS-232C control via optional SVT-RS1A

Adaptive Picture Control (APC) for optimum head to tape match

Audio recording in 2, 12 and 24 hour modes

Loop through video in power off mode

Menu driven settings - no video input necessary for setup

Alarm scan/log capability

Field advance/reverse playback capability

Built-in time/date generator, 30 day backup

Clock set in/out - Synchronizes time setting on multiple decks

Available in 2, 12 and 24 hour recording speeds

Clear playback with fine detail and excellent signal to noise ratio

Adjusts video head bias to best match the tape being used

A wide variety of recording options to meet virtually every user's needs

Tape Format: VHF

Recording System: Rotary 4-Head Helical Scanning System

Video Signal: EIA/NTSC

Video Input: Composite, BNC x 1

Video Output: Composite, BNC x 1

Recording Modes: 2-168 Hours

Audio Recording: 2, 12, 24 Hour mode

Horizontal Resolution: 350 Lines (B/W); 300 Lines (Color)

S/N Ratio: 44 dB

Time/Date: Yes

Alarm Rec. Speed: 2, 12 hours or No change

Alarm Search: No

Alarm Scan: Yes

Alarm Log: Yes

Power Requirement: AC 120V, 60 Hz

Power Consumption: 17W

Computer Interface: RS-232C VIA Optional SCT-RS1A

Mic. Input: Mini jack, -60 dBs, 600 Ohms

Built-In Timer: 7 day/ 8-event

Dimensions: 16 5/8 x 4 x 13 3/4 inches (420 x 100 x 340mm)

Weight: 12 lb. 12 oz. (5.8 kg)

Record Interval: 1/60 - 1.4 sec


So, it looks like 1 week is the most data retention you can obtain from this VCR on a T-120 tape.


As for your question in regards to the "REC CHECK" button, I would say concentrate on the Record button, insert a blank T-120 tape and plugin a video source and see if the VCR records, then see if you are able to change between speeds (2 hours [sP] thorugh 168 Hours). So in short just pay attention to two major buttons, the one that starts the recording and the other that changes the tape speed. Also you can explore the others that stops the tape, rewind and fast forward.


Now, keep in mind that you only get 350 horizontal TV Lines, this means that if you hook up a 4 CH multiplexer to it each camera will get 1/4 of that pie, thats 87.5 TVL or you can opt for sequencial in which case each camera will be recorded in the full 350 TVL by taking turns once every 5 seconds auto switching in full screen. That's the limitation of the Time Lapse VCR method. I would go the Digital way and get a HiKVision HD-TVI DVR which can be had like for $170 +/1 for a 8CH DVR that would let you record full HD video. But if you would like to make full use of your investment you acquired for dirt cheap you can hook up one camera to your front house and record it using that VCR which will give you 1 week retention period unless you decide to use 4 T-120 VHS tapes in which case you can have 1 month (The standard legal suggestion for video retention).

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