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CED Digest Vol. 3 No. 33  •  8/15/1998


Date: Sun, 09 Aug 1998 07:52:56 -0500
From: Geoff Oltmans 
To: Tom Howe <>
Subject: Re: CED Digest Vol. 3 No. 32

> Re: CED problems- "snowy" or noisy picture is almost always a stylus
> and/or disc problem, either the stylus picked up a piece of dust or the
> disc itself already has damage. Usually pausing for a few seconds solves
> this problem, as I've had this happen on some discs that was so bad the
> picture went blank completely, but just hitting reverse-scan back to
> where the problem started it played back a decent picture that time. A
> common quirk on my SGT-200 is pictures with a lot of white- black video
> noise usually shows up in the white.

It seems to me that a lot of this problem is caused by static buildup on
the surface of the disc itself. The disc is a good static conductor
(hence why they used it I'm sure), but the downfall I think is that it
can be vulnerable to buildup when inserting or removing the disc. This
is probably more evident now since the coating is drying out on discs,
and doesn't protect it as well.

That's my opinion anyway. :) I could be dead wrong. Sure some of it's
caused by dust particles, but I've seen some that are absolutely sparkly
and I don't think there's much way that much dust could get into the


Date: Mon, 10 Aug 1998 09:40:28 EDT
Subject: Re: CED Digest Vol. 3 No. 32

If the "snowy" picture info was in answer to my request for info re white-
smeary picture -- it is off base.  The problem I have occurs even without a
disc in place -- the SJT400 has black framed messages (such as "LOAD DISC")
that have nothing to do with the stylus or the disc and these are smeared as
well.  Has anyone else had this problem -- and can it be resolved?


Date: Thu, 13 Aug 1998 04:36:59 -0700 (PDT)
From: Jesse Skeen 
To: Tom Howe <>
Subject: Re: CED Digest Vol. 3 No. 32

I may have asked this earlier but got no response, so I'll ask it again: 
What was the very first CED to have closed captions? Someone told me it 
was "Flashdance". I'm not deaf but since my TV has closed captions I 
enjoy looking at them; movies like Flashdance help you learn the words to 
the songs! Also, anyone know why the "Columbia Pictures Home 
Entertainment" tapes were captioned, while the RCA discs which appeared 
to use the same master (nothing before the movie at the beginning and 
that blue and yellow copyright crawl at the very end) were not captioned?
Also, if you have the promo-only "$19.98 Preview Disc", check out the 
clip from "Trading Places". Eddie Murphy says a dirty word which is muted 
out on the soundtrack, but the caption signal is still there so if you 
turn that on the offensive word will appear onscreen! Also on 'Making 
Michael Jackson's Thriller' (a must for any video collection) during the 
TV clip of him singing "Billie Jean" the captions from the show are 
intact too, although nothing else on that disc is captioned.
RCA gave screen credit to the National Captioning Institute on their 
tapes at the very end, after the FBI warning, but notice for the longest 
time it said "Captions Copyright 1984" on tapes made around 1986? Just a 
memory from my tape-watching days, which ended when I got laserdisc (and 

Date: Sat, 15 Aug 1998 23:44:26 -0700
From: Tom Howe
Subject: RE: Washed Out Video on SJT400 Player

From the description of the video problem on the SJT400, it sounds more like a
video mixing problem rather than a carrier distress problem due to intermittent
stylus contact. The SJT400 has two more circuit boards than other players, and
these contain the on-screen display (OSD) and remote keyboard microcomputer
(RKM) functions. Specifically, the problem is probably with the OSD IC (U6103)
on the OSD circuit board. This chip can overlay up to six lines of text on the
video recovered from the CED, even though the SJT400 only uses the bottom line.
When the chip goes into failure, it often generates a weak white video that when
mixed with the CED video results in a washed out appearance over the entire
screen. This chip is susceptible to heat failure, meaning the player may operate
normally for a few minutes before the washed out appearance commences, or the
problem may only manifest itself during the summer in an environment that lacks
air conditioning. The first thing to try is operating the player out in the open
in a cool environment. This may be enough to prevent the chip from overheating,
but if the washed-out video appears the instant the player is turned on, the chip
may have already completely failed.

--Tom Howe


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