Connecting multiple devices

December 10, 2008 at 10:25:08
Specs: N/A, N/A

A friend of mine has many devices at home that he wants to connect up into one system, im a bit lost so wanted advice please.

He has:

VCR Player/Recorder
DVD Recorder
Blue Ray Player
Virgin Midia Box

My question is how can he connect up all these items so that he can Record TV using his DVD/CD recorder, Use his virgin media box, play blue ray - not all at the same time but without the need of having to continuously connect each device when he needs to use it.

Im totaly new to this so a diagram would be awesome if someone doesnt mind taking the time, im not trying to be lazy, its just he lives an hour away from me so if i gave him a diagram he can go away and follow it.

Any help would be much appreciated.


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December 10, 2008 at 12:01:55
It is impossible to answer your question because you provide no specifications as to the input/output capabilities of these various devices. For example, I have a 37" HDTV which has 2 A/V inputs (conventional composite/S-video connections such as VCRs have had for years), 2 component inputs (YPb/CbPr/Cr), 2 HDMI inputs, 1 RGB input (VGA from computer), and finally the COAX input for cable/antenna. I could simply connect all the devices you listed to any one of these inputs (dependent on the output from the devices) and then select the desired device from the on-screen menu.

You add in the desire to record "TV" on the DVD recorder. I also have a DVD recorder. It only has composite & S-video inputs, plus a COAX connection to the built-in TV tuner. Is your friend's DVD recorder capable of tuning to his source of "TV"? In my case, both the TV and the DVD recorder are connected to an antenna and the recorder can be set to record from it's built-in tuner.

The point is, you have to look at each one of the different devices and input/output connections available. Then, you have to determine what you want to be able to do, such as record VCR tapes or Virgin Media to the DVD recorder, etc. Then determine how to hook things up accordingly. In some cases you may determine that the only way to get what you want is to add an A/V switch of some kind to avoid having to manually change the plugs.

But, nobody can determine how to do any of this without knowing the specifications of all the devices involved and the functional desires of the end user.

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December 10, 2008 at 12:31:06
Something like the following 'might' help:

But as pyrolitic said, you would need to know the specs of all the devices and exactly what your friend's needs are.

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December 11, 2008 at 02:24:23
Hey guys thank you so much for taking the time to reply, your right i havent provided enough info at all, i have asked him to provide me with the various inputs he has on each device and i will post pictures of them.

If then you can again give me a bit more help in connecting everything up that would be much appreciated.


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Related Solutions

December 11, 2008 at 17:10:35
You also need to get your friend to describe how he wants it to work. For instance, does he want to be able to record VCR tapes to DVD? If yes, then that means the VCR output will have to be connected to one of the DVD recorders inputs. Now, the problem with that is if he just wants to watch a VCR tape without recording it, he will still have to have the DVD recorder turned on because the VCR output will be going to the recorder and not directly into the TV. The same situation with the Virgin Media box. If it only has one output and he wants to be able to try and record DVDs from it, then he will have to have it plugged into the DVD recorder. And, again, he will have to have the DVD recorder on every time he wants to watch Virgin Media videos, regardless if he is recording them. This is what I was trying to point out in my first response. It's pretty stright forward as far as describing how to connect all the devices listed to a HDTV, but it gets complicated when you want the different devices to work both, together and independently at different times.

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December 12, 2008 at 01:38:03
What he wants is to be able to record the Virgin Media programs to his DVD, he is one of those people that will leave all the devices on regardless of what he is watching.

I will get together all his requirements along with the spec of each device and post back. proberbly on monday.

Thanks a lot,

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December 15, 2008 at 05:39:30
Hello again,

ok so i have pictures of each device (the I/O) and so was wondering could you guys please help me connect this up?

Blue Ray Player


VCR & Cable Box


please remember i am totally thick when it comes to this sort of thing i have no clue as to how this should be.

He would like to be able to record his Virgin Media (Cable) to his dvd recorder. I hope all this information is sufficient?


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December 17, 2008 at 11:09:37
I sure hope the noted setup is utilizing a newer LCD or Plasma TV that comes with all kinds of ways to connect to.

I have an HD TV with two HDMI connections a few Component (5 wire) and a couple of (RCA (3 wire)) composite connections in addition to the F-Type (Cable) connectors.

I also have a DVD Recorder, a DVD Player, a VCR/DVD Player combo and an HD Cable box.

I split the line cable line coming from the wall and out to the Cable box and to the F-Type connector on the TV.

I ran the Cable box to one of the HDMI connectors on the TV.
I ran the DVD recorder to the second HDMI connector on the TV. This recorder has a QAM tuner so I can watch free in the clear cable broadcasts.

I used the composite Out from the cable box to the In on the VCR/DVD player so that I could record from the cable box but found that I never use it anymore and will likely remove it from the setup.

Using the TV's remote control I can choose to watch the DVDs or HD Cable box by switching between HDMI1 or HDMI2.

If I am recording two programs at the same time then I switch the TV to TV (which also has a QAM tuner) so I can watch HD programming.

Also hooked up to the TV I have Nintendo 64 using composite and Nintendo WII using the special "Ultimate cable" (Component cable).
Occasionally I also hook up the Nintendo Game Cube. (This TV like most new LCD TVs has a bazillion ways to connect things but only two HDMI on this cheaper model)
It's remote control has 11 connection options that can be switched using the remote control.

(I also have the HD Cable box connected to the DVD Recorder but don't remember right now what kind of cables I used to do it but not HDMI as it was not a choice option)


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December 17, 2008 at 12:07:10
The information is sufficient if assumptions are made about how these componets actually work. The primary question is if the VCR's RF "out" will output the video captured from the VCRDECODER SCART PERITEL (which is the video coming from the cable box's SCART VIDEO output), OR if the VCR's RF "out" is just the pass-through signal coming from the areial cable. IF it's the latter, then there is no way to connect the cable box output to the DVD recorder, the components are just not compatible without some kind of adapter. But, if it's the former, here is how I would connect it:

1. As depicted in the vcr1qi2.jpg, the SCART video output of the SMT-2100C is connected to the VCRDECODER SCART PERITEL, which will decode the cable box video and, hopefully, re-modulate the signal to the RF OUT on the VCR. NOTE: the TV SCART PERITEL can still be connected directly to the TV to provide a better picture when watching live video.

2. Connect the RF OUT from the VCR to the RF SIGNAL INPUT of the DVD recorder. This requires that the RF modulated output of the VCR (if there is any) is in the same "format" as the RF tuner capability of the DVD recorder, such as NTSC or PAL. If it is, then the "channel out" of the VCR's RF OUT has to match the "channel" that the DVD recorder is set on, or "tuned to". IF this is all compatible, then the DVD recorder will "receive" the re-modulated signal which originates from the SCART VIDEO on the cable box (as long as the VCR is turned on!).

3. Connect the DVD recorder to the TV using the Component out from the recorder to the Component in on the TV.

4. OF COURSE, connect the Blu-Ray to the TV with the HDMI. Any other type of connection would be absurd. The only way to get the full capabilities from the Blu-Ray to the TV is through the HDMI connection.

5. You could also connect the Blu-Ray to the DVD recorder by using the S-video out on the Blu-Ray to the S-video input on the DVD recorder and possibly be able to record DVD disks. But, you will NOT be able to record Hi-Def DVD in this way. The final recording will only be a "fair" standard DVD recording.

Again, this setup is only based on if a working RF connection can be made between the VCR and the DVD recorder. Otherwise, some other type of componet or adapter must be purchased which will convert the SCART VIDEO output from the cable box to match one of the DVD recorder's inputs.

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December 22, 2008 at 04:30:22
Hey everyone,

Thank you very much for the help you have provided, im going to draw a diagram of the devices and the way they should connect to each other from the information you have provided, hopefully he will be able to do as you suggested.

Thanks again for the help, its been very helpful.

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January 6, 2009 at 05:23:35
Thanks everyone, we were able to solve this one, it worked great.

Thanks for all your help.

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