llllllllllllllllllllllIllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll USOO5194963A United States Patent 1191  Patent Number: Dunlap et al.   DUAL DECK VIDEOCASSETI'E RECORDER 4,404,601 SYSTEM 4,543,618 4,577,239 4,630,133 4,651,230  Inventors: R. Terren Dunlap, Scottsdale; John B. Berkheimer, Tempe, both of Ariz.; C. Duane Woodmas, Empgria, K3115, Date of Patent: 5,194,963 Mar. 16, 1993 9/1983 Sakamoto .................. .. 360/7716 X 9/1985 3/1986 12/1986 3/ 1987 4,768,110 8/1988 Dunlap et al. ................... .. 360/331  Assignee: Go-Video, Inc., Scottsdale, Ariz. FOREIGN PATENT DOCUMENTS  Appl. No: 230,181 2013865 2/1933 United Kingdom ................ .. 360/15  Filed:  Int. Cl.5 ....................... .. H04N 9/80; H04N 9/88 . 2164194 3/1986 United Kingdom ................ .. 360/3l Aug. 9, 1988 1  U.S. c1. .................................. .. 353/314; 358/316; OTHER PUBLICATIONS Sharp M°d=1VC—5W20E owner’s Manual, May 1988 358/321; 358/343; 360/15; 3160/38.]; 369/84  Field of Search ................... .. 358/181, 191.1, 314, 358/315, 316, 318, 321, 335, 341, 343; . . 5'9"”? lii‘am'f'eklzgylgl-fnvani J‘ “mm x“'"‘"e’—, - - “"8 360/l4_1_14_3 15 33.1 3&1 61_63 7102 73.04, 73.11, 77.12-77.14, 77.16; 369/6-7, 12, 84 References Cited U.S. PATENT DOCUMENTS Attorney, Agent, or F1rm—Jerry Cohen; Harvey Kaye; Edwl" H- Paul  nnsmcr A videocassette deck and taping system includes two videocassette decks therefor (A and B) included within 3 560 666 2/1971 Bookman ...................... .. 369/7 a Single housing utilizing 3 “mm” Pow‘:r supply’ 316201476 11/1971 Cervantes v360/15, x tuner, controls, and switching and control circuitry to ........ .. 360/15 enable simultaneous multiple functions using both decks 360/7311 X and to also enable tape to tape duplication (dubbing) in gamml ------------------ -- 32%;}? a manner avoiding degradation of video information  """"" ' 3,767,206 10/1973 Rehklau et a1. . 4,224,643 9/1980 Nakano et a1. .... .. , , ates ............. .. . 4,276,562 6/1981 stcwan at a]. . 4,396,941 4,400,742 369/7 X ' 8/ 1983 Nishimura ct a1. . 369/7 X 8/1983 Yamamitsu et al_ .............. .. 358/318 DECK A ' ' ' content, as well as additional funct1on select1on. 2 Claims, 9 Drawing Sheets [28 HEAD I96 FA DUB V F0 CIRCUIT HEAD 192 ‘96 I-— MOTOR DR'VE \ PLAY \ ||| OUT _ SERVO m; CONTROL. CONTROL news \50 \“_32 z'msmc HEAD 304 AUDIO U HEAD & AUDIO O2 HEAD I97 US.‘ Patent Mar. 16,1993 Sheet 1 of 9 5,194,963 DU FIG. I‘ l4 DECK-B I0 FF 1i; Q l2 DECK-A FF HS PRW E] 5 E L: / 5Q, I I8 US. Patent Mar. 16,1993 Sheet 6 of 9 5,194,963 302 \\\\\\\\\\\\\ \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\ \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\ \ 300A 3°?’ FIG. 4A 302 AUDIO TRACK L 308 2 3'9 30s ////Ill/lll/l/l/l/l/l/l/l/l/lI/l/l/IIl/ll/I/[l/ /////////l I \ \ 3008 303 FIG. 4B IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIJIIIIIIJIJIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIU \ \sooc \ 303 . FIG. 4C 1 5,194,963 2 home-consumer uses (i.e., expensive, occupied too DUAL DECK VIDEOCASSE'ITE RECORDER SYSTEM FIELD OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to a dual deck videocassette recorder (“VCR”) system that enables the user to have two decks available for selective simultaneous func tions, including playback and recording capability of the system such that pre-recorded material can be trans ferred from a videocassette tape in one such deck to a blank tape in the other deck. Related subject matter ap in the Dunlap-Lang application, Ser. No. 07/048,521, ?led May 8, 1986 (as a continuation of Ser. No. 06/652,820, ?led Sep. 20, 1984, now abandoned), and now U.S. Pat. No. 4,768,110, granted Aug. 30, 1988. The present invention provides an integrated (single much space-large footprint, cumbersome, complicated to use, short recording time capacity). This capacity problem and some portion of the other shortcomings were caused by the excessive space required in the recording method used to lay the signal on the video tape. Space needs were generated by (l) the large size of the recording heads’ gap (85 microns) and (2) the neces sity of a guard band (the unrecorded space or distance between the recorded information of the video track) on the tape to prevent “cross-talk.” Although azimuth recording was patented in 1958 it wasn’t perfected until 1974 when Sony introduced the Betamax brand i-inch VCR designed for the home set) dual-deck VCR system usable with a fully featured consumer and comprising the feature that slant azimuth recording was incorporated into videocassette record ers by using smaller narrow gapped heads (58 microns). Azimuth recording uses two heads mounted with head gaps at angles slightly off perpendicular to the head television set or with one or more components of a path (at a six degree angle to true perpendicular to video system (e.g., antenna, monitor, tuner) enabling direction of the head), one slanted to the left and the play of a pre-recorded videocassette tape from one deck other to the right. This azimuth head con?guration chassis, single tuner, single power supply, single control of the dual deck VCR system to an associated television reduces cross-talk and eliminates the wasted, unused set or monitor while simultaneously recording an off space that was required on the bulky commercial the-air broadcast to a videocassette tape in the other 25 VTR’s and 2-inch VCR’s. deck of the dual-deck VCR system. BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION One of the features of the present invention is the ability, in context of a dual-deck VCR system, to dupli cate “high quality” videocassette tapes (speci?cally, those videocassette tapes with azimuth recording char acteristics as used in home-consumer VCR’s) with good Matsushita and Victor Company of Japan (JVC) immediately introduced their version of a consumer VCR format, viz: 5-inch VHS (Video Home Systems), which incorporated the azimuth recording system but also extended the recording time to six hours using T-120 tape or eight hours using T-l60 tape. This was accomplished by using a smaller recording head gap (29 microns), by creating a one-half track width and by ?delity and avoidance of copy degradation where a slowing down the running speed of the tape. copy is made from a copy in two or more generations. 35 VCR technology was then commercially practicable A further feature of the invention is the maintenance of the integrity of pre-encoded copyright protection systems in a manner that makes defeat of protection systems by ordinary consumer devices (generally re ferred to as “video stabilizers” or “black boxes”) im practicable. The user of the consumer grade azimuth-recorded at a consumer market level as the cost had been re duced, the machines were smaller, the cassettes were pocket book size, the loading of tapes and operations was now simple and a long series of television programs could be recorded. With the addition of a tuner/timer, time shifting was available so the user could watch programs during leisure time. videocassette tapes can, with this invention, simply and The introduction of VHS and Beta for consumer easily duplicate (or dub) tape contents from one (source recording of broadcast television shows immediately tape) to the other (target tape) through FM dub cir 45 raised the question of legality of selling the VCR ma cuitry provided in this invention to achieve a clear, chines, which was resolved by a U.S. Supreme Court high-quality, videocassette target tape which is indistin decision in 1984 (Sony Corp. of America v. Universal guishable from the original (source) videocassette tape. Studios, 464 U.S. 417 (1984), favor of continued sale. Further, several generations of duplicated videocassette The door was opened for order of magnitude expansion tapes maintain the high quality visual characteristics of the original videocassette recording. Azimuth-recorded videocassette tapes can, with the present invention, be pre-encoded with a signal (or various signals) that actuate the circuitry of the dual deck VCR system to prevent the duplication of said tapes (through a closed, sealed circuit device which makes it impracticable and cost prohibitive for the con sumer to bypass this system and impossible to use a video stabilizer and still maintain the quality as pro vided by the dub circuitry of- the invention). Commercial “reel-to-ree ” videotape recording (VTR) was introduced to the public by the U.S. com in the U.S. sale of VCR’s. This was followed by a prolif eration of videocassette recordings from various sources (i.e., home movies, business productions, educa tional programs, news releases, etc.) and many VCR owners began wiring their single deck machines to-' gether to make copies of their tapes. However, the quality of the copies made by wiring two VCR’s was and is marginal. A major problem of such copying was and is the inability to effectively transfer an azimuth recorded video signal and lay it on a blank tape in the same azi muth format without loss of signal, the creation of noise and the experience of severe degradation of signal. Sev pany, Ampex, Inc., in 1956. In 1969 Sony Corporation eral efforts of the art to solve the problem included (Japan), and its U.S. marketing subsidiary, introduced the ?rst 2-inch U-Matic “videocassette” recording 65 video enhancers, detailers and other such means to ?ll (VCR) unit for commercial broadcast TV studio re cording purposes. These systems although excellent for broadcast TV studio purposes had major drawbacks for in or alter signals but none of these devices could “save” the original azimuth recorded signal in an unaltered state for duplication of like kind and quality. 3 5, l94-,963 d break or wear in the wire which can permit interference llt is, therefore, the object of the present invention to in the signal transferred. The connectors can easily overcome the prior-art drawbacks of dubbing technique and apparatus. become damaged or worn or broken through constant use or misuse and, therefore, cause interference in the It is a further object of the invention to enhance the usefulness of videocassette recorder (VCR) systems. signal transferred. It is a further object of the invention to provide a low cost, mass-marketable dual deck videocassette recorder system which is easy to understand and use, reliable and The present invention is directed to a videocassette recorder and taping system which includes at least two multi-functional, with a range of selectable useful opera tions for entertainment, educational and/or business tape therein. An output selection switching means is provided for selection of the video output to a video purposes. monitor from among a plurality of signals including the videocassette recorder decks receiving videocassette signal from a videocassette tape in either of the ?rst or the second decks and the input to the ?rst VCR. Other SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention which solves the above de standard signals which may be selectively directed scribed tape duplication problems is related to the fol 15 through the output selection switch include a TV tuner, a video line, and a camera. A second selection switching lowing retrospective analysis made with bene?t of the means is also provided for selecting the desired record present invention itself. The major road block of the ing input when one of the lines connected to this switch state—of-the-art was created by the modulation and de is also connected directly to the second videocassette modulation process which is inherent in any single deck consumer 5-inch VCR. Conventional single deck 20 deck. Thus, a prerecorded tape that is located in the ?rst videocassette deck may be recorded on a blank video VCR’s modulate outgoing signals to prepare the signal cassette tape located in the second videocassette deck while selection of a program for monitor viewing is unrestricted among the original alternatives. It is also for transmission to the monitor and demodulate incom ing signals to prepare the signal for azimuth recording on the tape. Therefore, the conventional method for duplicating videotapes from one VCR to another (i.e., 25 seen that the proposed system provides the signi?cant advantage that a prerecorded tape may be viewed dur VHS to VHS, Beta to Beta) was accomplished by in ing a recording session. serting a pre-recorded cassette into one VCR and a ' The complexity and problems that exist with cabling blank tape into a second VCR. The video “out” from and jacks can be eliminated with internal wiring but the ?rst VCR was cabled to the video “in” of the sec ond VCR and the separate recorders were turned on. 30 only through the creation of a dual-deck VCR system The second VCR was programmed to record informa tion input to it and the ?rst VCR was programmed to play the information recorded on it. When the VCRs were run, the information of the cassette in the ?rst VCR was recorded onto the cassette in the second 35 with internal circuitry. The primary problem remains unresolved, “How can one eliminate the degradation of signal caused by modulation and demodulation and still prevent ‘crosstalk’ because part of the color process in converting from 629 KHZ to 358 MHZ helps eliminate the crosstalk?” This is required to process out the inter ference in the color signals to ensure quality and, there fore, preclude the ability to record color 629 KHZ to color 629 KHZ directly. It has been determined that the VCR, making a duplicate. Another approach is to track the above process, with the exception that the corresponding RF or radio fre quency is used as output and input. This alternative is less preferred since additional processing of the video 40 circuitry could be designed with minimal processing and maintaining a clean FM/629 dub transfer process which would allow the recording tape to preserve the signal is used to modulate the RF carrier output which is directly demodulated by the receiving VCR to pro duce the video again. This unnecessary modulation and demodulation further degrades the signal quality of the duplicate tape. original high de?nition signal coming from the prere corded tape. An FM/629 dub circuit provided in accor 45 Apparently, video is used because that is what most VCR manufacturers provide as convenient output jacks. But successive duplication from tape to tape to tape and so on, using these artifacts, is detrimental to the dance with the present invention comprises, primarily, an automatic gain control (AGC) ampli?er, a dropout compensator with delay line, a buffer and then a high pass ?lter to separate luminance for passage through a limiter and equalizer plus a low pass ?lter to separate quality of the signal recorded, although less so than 50 the color for passage through an AGC amp and then when using the RF outputs and inputs. The deteriora recombination with the luminance in a buffer. It was tion in signal quality is due to the same reasons. The video signal, as de?ned in many handbooks, is not di rectly recorded onto the tape. Instead an PM or fre further discovered that the original azimuth recorded quency modulated signal is recorded onto the tape. 55 Thus when a duplicated tape is made by using the video signals, there is an unnecessary and redundant forma tion of the video from the FM and then the FM from the video which degrades the resultant signal recorded on the duplicated tape. This use of cabling from one VCR to another (whether through video jacks or through RF jacks) creates a system of exposed connectors and cables. These connectors and cables are subject to several in signal could be substantially maintained using the smaller (29 micron) heads at the standard play (SP-2 hours) speed because a guard band is created and, there fore, less processing is required. Another unresolved problem that this invention ad dresses is the ‘policing’ of unauthorized duplications of copyrighted Videocassettes. Copy-coding systems are being marketed and employed to protect encoded copy righted videotapes from illegal or unauthorized copy ing. Currently, all duplication of videocassette tapes is accomplished by cabling together two single deck herent shortcomings and problems. The length of the 65 VCRs. However, in response to video copy-coding systems, “video stabilizer” systems have been devel cables promotes degradation and interference of signals by picking up unwanted signals and the cables through“ oped to interfere between the two single VCRs via the cabling system. The explicit purpose of “video stabal exposure or use can become easily damaged causing a 5 5,194,963 6 dual deck system providing off-air taping and play con trol and utilizing duplicating fetures hereinafter de scribed and generally indicated at 10. The system 10 is contained within a single housing generally indicated at izer” devices is to intercept the video signal and un scramble the copy-coding system. Thus, the present method for duplicating videocassette tapes can be readily con?gured to defeat copy-coding systems. The editing and duplication in the invention, dual deck FM dub VCR, is accomplished through the inter 11 and, as will be described, includes a dual deck ar rangement for receiving conventional videocassette tape therein. The term “deck” as used herein comprises a platform for a videocassette, hubs for engaging drive wheels of the videocassette, motor means for driving one or both hubs, motor controls and electromagnetic electrostatic and/or optical transducer heads for ex nal circuitry of the system. Any attempts by a home consumer user to intercept the video signal through external cabling will be unsuccessful for three reasons: ?rst, an external signal would have to pass through the demodulation-modulation process and would not be of change of control signals and information with the vid original high quality for duplication process. Secondly, eotape medium of the videocassette. Each deck has an access port-12 for ?rst deck A and 14 for second deck within the play machine electronic circuitry by the ‘play’ machine which will instruct‘the ‘record’ machine 15 B. A ?rst deck (designated as deck A in FIG. 1) may be used for playing a prerecorded video tape located in a to scramble or not record the signal. Thirdly, the video cassette. A second deck (designated by deck B in FIG. stabilizer cannot be plugged into the sealed integrated 1) is used also for playing and recording videocassettes. circuits of the dual-deck VCR without substantial engi An output selection switch 18 is located on the front of neering, tooling and understanding and impracticable 20 the housing 11 below the port 12 and, as will be de cost. scribed, selects a line which will be connected to the The combination of the dual-deck con?guration and video monitor for viewing. A recording selection the FM dub feature with video copy-coding systems switch 18 is also located on the front of the housing 11 serves to provide signi?cantly greater protection the copy code will be read by a sealed integrated circuit against unauthorized copying of encoded videocassette tapes. Other objects, features, and advantages will be appar ent from the following detailed description of preferred embodiments taken in conjunction with the accompany ing drawings in which: BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING FIG. 1 is a front view of the control panel and hous ing of a dual deck VCR utilizing features of the present below the port 14 and is provided for selecting the input 25 line from which a program or prerecorded material will be recorded onto a blank video tape cassette that has been inserted into deck B(14). The recording selection switch 16 is only used when a blank tape is inserted into port 14, deck B. 30 therefor is schematically illustrated and in this connec tion it is understood that the electrical components, as invention, according to a preferred embodiment ‘ thereof; FIG. 2 is a circuit block diagram of a dual-deck VCR system of the present invention which can be associated Referring now to FIG. 2, the videocassette deck and taping system according to a ?rst preferred embodiment illustrated in block diagram form, are composed of 35 conventional circuitry well known in the art except as otherwise speci?ed herein. As shown in FIG. 2, the electrical inputs into the system include a TV signal that is directed through a TV tuner 20, a video input that is directed through an isolation ampli?er 22, a camera FIG. 3A is a circuit block diagram of a dual-deck VCR system of the present invention which can be 40 video input socket 24, and (also as an “input”) the ?rst videocassette deck (Deck-A). All of the input signals _ associated with the FIG. 1 control panel and housing are selectively directed into the ?rst video cassette deck (but in a different preferred embodiment construction with the FIG. 1 control panel and housing; relative to FIG. 2); (Deck-B) that is accessed through the port 14 for re cording onto a blank tape located therein. A ?rst four circuitry utilized with Deck A of FIG. 3A; FIG. 3C 45 position (1, 2, 3, 4) selection switch 16 can direct a selected one of the inputs to deck B and simultaneously shows a more detailed level of the FIG. 3B circuitry to a second (output) switch 18 (with positions 1-6). utilized with Deck B of FIG. 3A; The input signals may also be directed to the TV FIGS. 4A-4C show the organization of information monitor for video display thereon. For this purpose, the recorded onto magnetic videocassette tapes in speed output selection switch 18 through the switch positions modes of SP and EP respectively; 1-6 thereof is moved to the appropriate position for FIG. 5 is a block diagram of a duplicating sub-system selecting the desired signal among the six inputs for usable with various embodiments of dual-deck VCR connection to the TV monitor. As shown in FIG. 2, the ' systems, e.g., the one shown in FIG. 3A, showing the FIG. 3B shows a more detailed level of the FIG. 3A relationship of the duplicating circuitry and the play output line from the second videocassette deck B as and record heads and the formation of the synchronous signals used for the motors which drive the videocas~ sette tape on which information is being recorded (tar selected by the output switch 18 is connected through switch position #6 thereof to the video monitor for set taP6); FIG. 6 is a circuit block diagram of the FM dub processing portion of the duplicating circuitry of FIG. 4; and viewing the program material of a videocassette in deck B The combination of the selection and output 60 switches, 16 and 18, enables a versatility of operation that includes use of the selection switch 16 to record either a TV program through the TV tuner 20 that is connected to selection switch position #4, a video input external controller means. that is connected to selection switch position #3, or a DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED 65 camera input that is connected to selection switch posi EMBODIMENTS tion #2, while at the same time viewing on the TV monitor a prerecorded tape that has been inserted into Referring now to the drawings and particularly to port 12 of Deck-A and by activating the play function FIG. 1, the housing and front panel of a videocassette FIG. 7 is a system block diagram modi?ed to include 5,194,963 7 on Deck-A and movement of the output switch 18 to position #4. It is also possible by use of the subject invention to duplicate material as prerecorded on a tape that is inserted into the videocassette recorded at port 12 of Deck-A by locating the selection switch 16 at position #1 while displaying the prerecorded program, which is accomplished by locating output switch 18 at position #5. In this manner, the material prerecorded on the for example, by leaving out commercials, on a blank cassette tape located in Deck-B. The videocassette lo 8 dual purposes of playing or recording as in FIG. 3. The functional keyboard can be programmed to either play or record from the VCR-A circuit. A frequency modu lated (FM) signal, 159 can be recorded onto a tape videocassette tape loaded into deck VCR-A via switch 169 and the heads 196 on drum 194. A second FM signal 170 can be selected for recording through switch 169. This second signal is formed by modulating an input video signal 158 with the Y/C Modulator/Processor cated in Deck-A can then be viewed while the edited 164. The Y/C modulator/processor 164 transforms the video into an FM signal suitable for recording onto version is produced in Deck-B. magnetic tape by conversion of the Y signal to FM, Referring now particularly to FIG. 3, a second em bodiment of a dual-deck VCR system's basic circuit is which is well known in the art. The PM signal on the tape is a luminance, referred to as Y, signal. The tape also contains a chrominance signal (C), which is a het diagramatically illustrated in which the ports 26 and 28 provide access to decks A and B, both of which com erodyned color signal in accordance with NTSC Stan prise VCR play and record capability and may be con dard (phase and amplitude modulated). Heterodyning mixes two higher frequency signals, producing a lower frequency signal equal to the difference between the TV tuner 20 for receiving a TV signal, a video input 20 two higher frequency signals wherein all the informa tion contained in the higher frequency signals is pre that is directed to the isolation ampli?er 22, and a cam served in the side bands of the lower frequency signal. era video input that communicates with the system The Y signal which carries all the luminance and TV through the socket 24. In order to select the input into de?ection synchroniztion information, is direct FM VCR-A, a ?rst (selector) switch 30 is provided and modulated on a carrier to a frequency spectrum above 1 includes switch positions numbers 1-4. Switch position MHZ. The C signal carries the color information and is #1 for selection switch 30 directs the signal from the ?gured for similar or different VCR formats. VCR deck-A (V CR-A) is adapted to communicate with the TV tuner into VCR-A. Switch position #2 directs the signal from the isolation ampli?er 22 into VCR-A, and switch position #3 directs the signal from the camera video into VCR-A. A second (output) switch 32 and switch positions 1-4 therefor are disposed in parallel relation with respect to switch 30 and the switch posi heterodyned into a frequency spectrum below 1 MHZ. These two signals are separated by a high pass ?lter and tions thereof and directs the signals from the inputs into VCR deck B (VCR-B). Thus, the input signal from the 158. This information is input to a servo control 191 which forms that signal which drives the drum motor 176 and the capstan motor 178 which drive the drum TV tuner is directed to VCR-B through switch position #1 of the selection switch 32, while the signal from the isolation ampli?er 22 is directed to VCR-B through switch position #2 of the selection switch 32, and switch position #3 directs the signal from the camera video to the VCR-B. - Both VCR-A and VCR-B are arranged to not only record but to play back. One purpose of the dual system as illustrated in FIG. 3 and as described hereinabove is a low pass filter. The Y-FM/C629 signal 159 has corre sponding parts. The Y/C modulator/processor also extracts the ver tical synchronization information from the video signal 194 and the capstan, respectively. All the resulting sig nal recorded on the tape must be synchronized in order to produce a tape suitable for viewing. When a VCR tape is played on deck VCR-A the FM signal is buffered by the ampli?er 192 and can be sent out through switch 195 or through the Y/C demodula tor/processor 160 which reproduces the video 162. The description of FIG. 3B for the circuit of deck VCR-B, corresponds to that of VCR-A (FIG. 3A). to enable a VHS cassette as located in VCR-A to record information from a Beta tape as located in VCR-B. The 45 Consider a pre-recorded tape loaded in deck VCR-A contrary circumstances are also available, wherein a and a blank videocassette tape in deck VCR-B and the Beta system with a Beta tape located in the deck of function keyboard 197 being programmed to duplicate VCR-B can record information from a VHS tape as from the videocassette tape in deck VCR-A. located in the deck of VCR-A. Switch position #4 in both of switches 30 and 32 provide for connecting the output of VCR-A with VCR-B, or conversely, connect ing the output of VCR-B to VCR-A. Thus, it is possible recorded on a magnetic tape with and without utiliza tion of the present invention is shown. The signal on to record (“dub”) video/audio information from a tape located in VCR-A onto a tape located in VCR-B; con versely, it is possible to record such information from a source tape located at VCR-B onto a target tape located at VCR-A. The system can also be used for simulta neously recording from a broadcast or auxiliary input to the videocassette tapes in both decks. The above de scribed structure can also be used with minor modi?ca tion, now apparent, to dub between source and target tapes of different formats or to apply an external source Referring to FIGS. 4A-4C, the format of signals tape 300A, 300B, sooc (of FIGS. 4A-4C, respectively) I has three parts. The audio signal is recorded on 1-2 audio-tracks (302) at the speci?ed level using an AC bias current recording system. The control track 303 is recorded along the other edge of the tape and contains the vertical synchronization signals. Each video track 306 contains one complete TV ?eld including the lumi nance, chrominance and the TV de?ection synchroni zation signals. Track 308 contains the successive TV ?eld information following 306. In the prior art situa tion of FIG. 4A, the two tracks 306 and 308 are physi tapes of different formats at the two decks. The avail able formats include, but are not limited to, 8 MM, cally adjacent and tend to overlap (either physically overlap or virtually overlap-Le, where the magnetic ?eld effects of adjacent tracks overlap). This situation VHS, S-VHS, Beta, ED-Beta. of FIG. 4A occurs under the conditions of standard FIG. 3A shows the functional blocks needed for the tasks using each of ‘VCR-B and VCR-A decks for such heads. HG. 4B illustrates this same relationship under signal for recording simultaneously to videocassette play (SP) tape speed using standard play (SP) recording 9 5,194,963 the conditions of extended play (EP) tape speed using extended play (EP) recording heads. Both FIGS. 4A and 4B illystrate that no guard band exists between recording tracks, and in fact physical or virtual overlap of these magnetic ?elds occur in both of these condi tions. A signi?cant improvement in this condition is achieved by this invention. FIG. 4C illustrates that guard bands are established between sequential record ing tracks 306 and 308. This eliminates the physical or virtual overlap of magnetic ?elds and resultant degrada tion of information. The new topographical relationship is accomplished under the condition of standard play (SP) tape speed using extended play (EP) recording heads, the the FM signal dub process as described here inafter. However, it is the establishment of the guard band which enables practical utilization of FM dubbing. Such utilization, in turn, enables a system which affords 10 response to the average signal rising or lowering. The resulting signal is fed to a “drop out copensator" 114. The circuitry includes a delay line 116 where the previ ously received FM signal, which is equivalent to one TV horizontal line, is stored. If a “drop out” or loss of signal is detected the information stored on the previous line replaces the lost information until the “drop out” disappears. This signal is buffered by 118 and fed to the Y/C processor 160 (FIG. 4) on line 140 (FIG. 5) and also fed through a signal splitter represented by the resistors 120 (FIG. 6). The circuitry following this sig nal splitter processes the FM signal to prepare the sig nals for recording onto another videocassette tape. As described above the FM signal on the tape has two parts, the luminance and the chrominance, which are easily separated by ?lters. The chrominance (color) carrier at 629 KH is separated by a low pass ?lter 130 and sent through the AGC ampli?er 132 where the signal level can be set by a color level control 133. generational losses and avoiding cost, complexity and 20 The high pass ?lter 122 separates out the luminance FM signal, which passes through a common FM limiter ccunterproductivity of additional modulation (coding). repeatable high ?delity of dubbing avoiding progressive /demodulation (decoding) subassemblies. 124. This removes any amplitude variations from the The FM signal from the pre-recorded tape is read by FM luminance signal preserving only the frequency described below. The play out signal 140 from the dub processor 111 is fed back through switch 195 to the Y/C teristic that higher frequency signals will have a higher amplitude when read from the tape than lower fre quency signals all else remaining constant. The lumi information. This signal is then fed through a common the heads 196 (FIG. 5) ampli?ed and buffered by play amp 192 and fed to the dub processor 111, which will be 25 equalizer 126, which compensates for the tape charac demodulator/processor 160. The resulting video signal nance FM signal level can be set at 128 and this, to 162 is input to the Y/C modulator 264 in deck VCR-B. This processor extracts the synchronization signals re 30 gether with the setting of the chrominance signal 133 level, can compensate for proper record level require quired by the record mechanism. This processor also regenerates the FM signal from the video, but this sig ments. The levels can be set so as to ensure that the nal is deselected by switch 269. Instead switch 269 se lects the output from the dub processor 111 via line 138, which is a Y-FM signal and C-629 which has not been demodulated. Both the color and luminance signals are added to The synchronization pulses extracted by 264 are needed by the capstan and the drum motors of deck ,, signal when read back from the tape will contain rea sonable levels for the color and the luminance signals. gether through the resistors 134 and buffered by 136. The resulting signal is suitable for direct connection to a record ampli?er 168 as shown in FIG. 5. The resulting VCR-B, 26 to properly synchronize the information signal is added back with the color signal through the being recorded onto the tape with the actual drive mechanism. A sync signal 271 is input to the servo other resistor 134. FIG. 7 is a block diagram of an enhanced system control 291 where the appropriate speci?c signals are generated for the drum motor 276 and the capstan form, of the previously described embodiments, in which simple or sophisticaled editing capabilities can be aarily demodulated and modulated. The audio from the tape in deck VCR-A is recorded onto the object tape in deck VCR-B via the play elec tronics 202 and record electronics 304. tive edit choices, text and/or graphic and/or audio overlays, audio/video section deletions, addins and controlled (AGC) ampli?er 112. This ampli?er 112 maintains a given signal level by changing the gain in conversion (beginning with the readily accessible and convertible FM signal) for computer modi?cation and achieved (a) through an internal or external micro motor 278, which maintain synchronization as de processor which serves as an edit controller and 45 scribed earlier. video/audio switcher; (b) via an edit controller which The approach also preserves the copy protection permits pre-set “in” and “out” edit points, and/or (c) capability. It is practical and cost effective to insert a via means permitting an automated preview of the edit variety of copy protection means in the signal transfer function. Additionally, the FIG. 7 system can be path to cope with essentially unmodulated FM (apart equipped with an interface that allows the optional use from relatively minor modulation/demodulation associ of an external computer for automated control of both ated with the copy protection. The latter demodulate/ decks and all simultaneous functions. This external, modulate (usually related only to sync’ pulses) does not computer interface may be selected from the class com diminish the FM signal quality and (re)recording prising but not limited to RS 232, SCSI, IEEE-488, and thereof. The video information recorded on each track undergoes little or none of the demodulate/modulate 55 RS 422 types, or other classes of interfaces. The forms of external control can include, e.g., jog processes under most copy protection systems. wheel hand controls, voice or motion activation, mouse The FM signal 138 from the dub processor 111 is controllers, button or switch panels, tablets, etc. input through the switch 269 to the record ampli?er 268 The edit control, whether effected by internal or and drives the head 296 on the record drum 294. As external means, can be constructed and arranged to explained above, this FM signal has not been unneces e?'ect in/out edit points, synchronized preview of tenta transfers, simple analog-to-digital conversion (begin FIG. 6 shows further aspects of the dub processor. 65 ning with the readily accessible and convertible FM signal) for computer modi?cation and digital-toanalog The FM signal is input on line 110 to an automatic gain ll 12 digital-to-analog reconversion and restoration on an other tape. It will now be appreciated that there is a (c) user controlled switching means to effect selective coupling of the broadcast signal to one of said decks, one of said decks to the output and one deck synergistic relation among the various elements of the system, including the following features: to the other, > (d) means for receiving the frequency modulated (1) Whereas a single videocassette tape has a limited capability to receive edit processing, transfers can be made fron a source tape to a target tape (or from a source tape and auxiliary inputs) to a target tape signal from a read head within a first deck’s play back electronics; (e) means for storing part of said received signal, said going from, say, Deck VCR-A containing the part being at least equivalent to one complete tele source to Deck VCR-B containing the target; the vision horizontal line, roles can be reversed, with Deck VCR-B as source with the old videocassette tape (or a new blank one inserted) in Deck VCR-A, now the target, for a further series of edit steps. (2) This pour back and forth sequence with a feasible 15 set of edit steps at each pour using a series of inex pensive videocassette tapes and an inherently inex - (f) means for detecting when any part of said received signal has been lost, and for replacing said lost signal with a corresponding signal from an adja cent previous television line from said stored sig nal, resulting in a signal with no drop outs; (g) means for receiving said resulting signal and for separating the chrominance signal from the lumi nance signal; pensive and easy-to-understand-and-operate appa ratus and method (for educational, entertainment 20 and/or business purposes, all feasible at mass mar ket levels) is enabled by the low loss, dub process (h) means for adjusting the relative amplitudes of said chrominance and luminance signals to compensate for tape read head output versus frequency charac teristics, and controller accommodating capabilities, de scribed above. (3) Consistent with the foregoing, copy and/or non 25 edit protection can also be provided for special classes of source tapes and the system as a whole is also utilizable for the various basic purposes set (i) means for combining said chrominance and lumi nance signals; (i) means for providing said combined signal to re cord structure within a second deck’s recording electronics via said switching means, (k) means for extracting synchronization information forth in the above cited Dunlap-Lang patent. The above described embodiments and varriants of 30 structure, operation, features, uses and advantages can be extended within the scope of the present invention to from said frequency modulated source; (1) means for forming from said synchronization in formation synchronized drive signals for the ?rst deck’s mechanical drive mechanisms and for main commonly controlled arrays of Deck A/Deck B dual taining synchronization of the record heads, cap deck systems and/or to tri-deck, four deck, etc. systems. It will now be apparent to those skilled in the art that 35 other embodiments, improvements, details, and uses can be made consistent with the letter and spirit of the fore stan motor, control head and drum motor with the information recorded on the tracks of said video cassette tape; going disclosure and within the scope of this patent, which is limited only by the following claims, construed in accordance with the patent law, including the doc trine of equivalents. (m) means for synchronously recording audio from said ?rst deck onto said cassette in said second deck, so that resulting audio and associated video information is synchronized as on said ?rst video cassette; resulting in a duplicate of said ?rst video cassette from said first deck on said cassette in said What is claimed is: 1. A dual deck VCR system including two videocas sette decks, each including playback electronics to ef fect playback of audio/video/control information from 45 second deck; (:1) means for azimuth video information recording in the second deck; and (0) speed control means and a I a videocassette therein using read heads and associated frequency modulation and at least one of said decks including means for recording such information to a related miniaturized recording head gap of said second deck to establish guard bands between adja videocassette therein, (a) means for selectively providing a playback output 2. A dual deck VCR system in accordance with claim 50 l wherein both decks are arranged with recording capa cent tracks. hility to serve as second declrs, each constructed and of one or the other of said decks of the system, arranged to generate said guard hands. (b) means for receiving and providing a broadcast signal to the system, Ill! ‘as 60 65 ill Ill! til It!
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