Macrovision Killer/eliminator

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Hello everyone, and a happy new year.
I bought a DVD recorder for Christmas a Philips 610 with the intention of
putting all my home Videos onto DVD, for safer keeping. I had tried with a
couple of capture cards in my PC over the years, but always ended up with
files too big and not very good quality, so I abandoned that idea. Anyway
back to the DVD recorder. My boy asked me about a week ago if he could watch
Star Wars, which we have on VHS, so I thought to myself oooh, I might as
well make a backup of it with the DVD recorder, while he is watching it,
completely forgetting that there may be some copy protection on the video.
The reason I tried to make the backup is, that we have lots of video films
and cartoons that we have bought over the years, and one or two of them are
starting to deteriorate. After three or four tries It then dawned on me that
their must be some protection on the video because it wouldn't record it.
After making some enquiries I discovered Macrovision was the culprit. After
a bit more digging round I heard that there was such a thing as a
macrovision killer/eliminator. I found several retailers on the internet but
all except one were in the United States, and the one in the UK where I live
claimed to have a set of scart leads that would do the job, but they just
looked like any other set of scart leads to me, so I didn't bother. I then
found a couple of circuit diagrams but they must be fairly old because one
of the main components on each circuit is discontinued. Now several years
ago I took up electronics as a hobby, I went to college and did quite well,
buying my own oscilloscope, frequency counter, logic probe, etc. I then
bought a PC and that was the end of my electronics hobby. I still have all
my gear, and think I could build one if I can get hold of a good circuit
diagram. I would appreciate any help from anyone.
Thank you very much, Stan.





Re: Macrovision Killer/eliminator
 Hello Stan. I know exactly where you are coming from. I sometimes
shoot short videos and edit on the PC. Imagine my frustration when
this can't be done because of MV. It's not even commercial footage!

 Perhaps this will help.
http://www.google.com/search?&q=macrovision +PIC+4066



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Re: Macrovision Killer/eliminator

Quoted text here. Click to load it

De-Macrovision cables are available from :
www.sonel.com
www.multi-region.co.uk




Re: Macrovision Killer/eliminator
> Hello everyone, and a happy new year.
> I bought a DVD recorder for Christmas a Philips 610 with the intention of
> putting all my home Videos onto DVD, for safer keeping. I had tried with a
> couple of capture cards in my PC over the years, but always ended up with
> files too big and not very good quality, so I abandoned that idea. Anyway
> back to the DVD recorder. My boy asked me about a week ago if he could watch
> Star Wars, which we have on VHS, so I thought to myself oooh, I might as
> well make a backup of it with the DVD recorder, while he is watching it,
> completely forgetting that there may be some copy protection on the video.
> The reason I tried to make the backup is, that we have lots of video films
> and cartoons that we have bought over the years, and one or two of them are
> starting to deteriorate. After three or four tries It then dawned on me that
> their must be some protection on the video because it wouldn't record it.
> After making some enquiries I discovered Macrovision was the culprit. After
> a bit more digging round I heard that there was such a thing as a
> macrovision killer/eliminator. I found several retailers on the internet but
> all except one were in the United States, and the one in the UK where I live
> claimed to have a set of scart leads that would do the job, but they just
> looked like any other set of scart leads to me, so I didn't bother. I then
> found a couple of circuit diagrams but they must be fairly old because one
> of the main components on each circuit is discontinued. Now several years
> ago I took up electronics as a hobby, I went to college and did quite well,
> buying my own oscilloscope, frequency counter, logic probe, etc. I then
> bought a PC and that was the end of my electronics hobby. I still have all
> my gear, and think I could build one if I can get hold of a good circuit
> diagram. I would appreciate any help from anyone.
> Thank you very much, Stan.

Hi Stan,

Macrovision works (IIRC) by messing with the sync signal. It is
therefore *HIGHLY LIKELY* that a successful MV killer *will* be a cable
of some description, as it will have to modify the sync signal.

Cheers
Terry


Re: Macrovision Killer/eliminator
Here in the US, Macrovision Killers are usually advertised as 'video
enhancers' with cute pictures on the advertisements showing the
characteristic darkening/lightening of the image that is the result of
Macrovision processing; this 'politically correct' approach seems to let
them remain on the shelves when perhaps they otherwise wouldn't.

They are pretty ubiquitous; I was in a CompUSA today and they had them.
It's true that there's not a whole lot in the box -- usually a sync
detector/separator IC and some logic for truly 'blanking' the blanking
interval rather than allowing Macrovision to goof around with it, although I
have seen some fancier ones (such as the one at CompUSA) that have, e.g.,
PAL/NTSC selectability, S-Video connections, etc.

I'm sure you can find some schematics of Macrovision killers on the 'net,
but the boxes are usually <$30, so unless you're looking to learn some more
about it, I'd just buy one and be happy.

---Joel Kolstad




Re: Macrovision Killer/eliminator
On Thu, 20 Jan 2005 03:10:58 -0800, "Joel Kolstad"

>Here in the US, Macrovision Killers are usually advertised as 'video
>enhancers' with cute pictures on the advertisements showing the
>characteristic darkening/lightening of the image that is the result of
>Macrovision processing; this 'politically correct' approach seems to let
>them remain on the shelves when perhaps they otherwise wouldn't.
>
>They are pretty ubiquitous; I was in a CompUSA today and they had them.
>It's true that there's not a whole lot in the box -- usually a sync
>detector/separator IC and some logic for truly 'blanking' the blanking
>interval rather than allowing Macrovision to goof around with it, although I
>have seen some fancier ones (such as the one at CompUSA) that have, e.g.,
>PAL/NTSC selectability, S-Video connections, etc.
>
>I'm sure you can find some schematics of Macrovision killers on the 'net,
>but the boxes are usually <$30, so unless you're looking to learn some more
>about it, I'd just buy one and be happy.
>
>---Joel Kolstad
>

Throw a scope on the video output and you can observe what's in
Macrovision... mostly just "whiter-than-white" bursts to confuse the
AGC in the recorder.  Sometimes there's also some extra sync around
the vertical pulse.  All really easy to fix once you think about it...
think REPLACE ;-)

                                        ...Jim Thompson
--
|  James E.Thompson, P.E.                           |    mens     |
|  Analog Innovations, Inc.                         |     et      |
We've slightly trimmed the long signature. Click to see the full one.
Re: Macrovision Killer/eliminator
Hi,

I think Macrovision managed to get a court ruling to prevent such devices
being sold in Europe, as removing the copy protection infringed their
Patents in some way. Such boxes 'Video Enhancers' were quite widely made -
at work we bought one made by Hamma which has S-Video and Composite video
in/out. Although they might not be easily obtainable new Ebay might be worth
checking. There were plenty of magazine articles showing how to build one,
usually involving a sync separator IC and some logic driving an analogue
switch so that the appropriate parts of the video signal were set to black
level. I did build one but seem to remember black level clamping wasn't all
that good. I am surprised that a key component in the design you found is
obsolete, there is probably a substitute out there, perhaps post the name of
the chip you cannot get.

The Macrovision signal on a DVD disc is actually generated in the DVD player
rather than being recorded on the disc, a 'flag' on the disc tells the
player to turn on the Macrovision encoding. Another approach might be to
disable the Macrovision inside the DVD player, back in the days when DVD
players needed some form of hardware change to make them play Region 1
discs, the same modification would often disable the Macrovision allegedly
to stop problems with projection TV's which didn't like the Macrovision
signal. Nowadays in the UK Region modified DVD players are quite common but
I suspect they just play all discs rather than have the macrovision
disabled. Again Ebay might turn up an older DVD player with all the
modifications already done.

Philip

> On Thu, 20 Jan 2005 03:10:58 -0800, "Joel Kolstad"
>
>>Here in the US, Macrovision Killers are usually advertised as 'video
>>enhancers' with cute pictures on the advertisements showing the
>>characteristic darkening/lightening of the image that is the result of
>>Macrovision processing; this 'politically correct' approach seems to let
>>them remain on the shelves when perhaps they otherwise wouldn't.
>>
>>They are pretty ubiquitous; I was in a CompUSA today and they had them.
>>It's true that there's not a whole lot in the box -- usually a sync
>>detector/separator IC and some logic for truly 'blanking' the blanking
>>interval rather than allowing Macrovision to goof around with it, although
>>I
>>have seen some fancier ones (such as the one at CompUSA) that have, e.g.,
>>PAL/NTSC selectability, S-Video connections, etc.
>>
>>I'm sure you can find some schematics of Macrovision killers on the 'net,
>>but the boxes are usually <$30, so unless you're looking to learn some
>>more
>>about it, I'd just buy one and be happy.
>>
>>---Joel Kolstad
>>
>
> Throw a scope on the video output and you can observe what's in
> Macrovision... mostly just "whiter-than-white" bursts to confuse the
> AGC in the recorder.  Sometimes there's also some extra sync around
> the vertical pulse.  All really easy to fix once you think about it...
> think REPLACE ;-)
>
>                                        ...Jim Thompson
> --
> |  James E.Thompson, P.E.                           |    mens     |
> |  Analog Innovations, Inc.                         |     et      |
> |  Analog/Mixed-Signal ASIC's and Discrete Systems  |    manus    |
> |  Phoenix, Arizona            Voice:(480)460-2350  |             |
> |  E-mail Address at Website     Fax:(480)460-2142  |  Brass Rat  |
> |       http://www.analog-innovations.com           |    1962     |
>
> I love to cook with wine.      Sometimes I even put it in the food.

Hi,





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