20 Questions To Ask Yourself When Buying A VCR

20 Questions To Ask Yourself When Buying A VCR

VCRs are quickly becoming a thing of the past and becoming increasingly difficult to find. If you are fortunate enough to find one, you’ll be lucky if it works. If you’re on the search for one and need to understand your options, you’re in the right place. If you prefer, we offer a buying option where we pick the VCR for you. Check that out here.


1. New or Used?

The first thing to consider is if you want new/unused, Pre Owned or refurbished. Bear in mind that if you find a new one, it most likely won’t include the manufacturer's warranty. New ones are rare and will cost much more. A refurbished one means that it has been professionally inspected and will work just like new. Used means that it is working according to a user or a reseller. You need to be careful here because people often don't test what is sold.

Find New Options Here

Find Refurbished Ones Here

Emerson EWV404 VHS VCR Video Cassette Recorder (Unused)-VCR-For The Low-For The Low


2. Do you want a warranty?

All VCRs from our store include a limited lifetime warranty. Most others don’t offer any sort of warranty and often do not accept returns. 

Checkout what you get with the limited lifetime Warranty HERE.


3. Do you need Hi-Fi audio?

When picking out a VCR, you have two options. Either Mono (single channel audio) or Hi-Fi (stereo). Mono audio gives only one audio output and is fine if your TV has only one speaker. Most TVs have a left and right speaker though, which is where Hi-Fi becomes quite handy. 

Find All Hi-Fi Stereo VCRs Here.

Hi-Fi Stereo Audio Surround Sound Left and Right


Mono Audio One Wire audio



4. Do you care about the brand?

There are many different brands to choose from and some of the best include Panasonic, JVC and Sony

Browse Brands Here


5. What should it look like?

Do you want it to be Black, Silver, Purple? Are you looking for that classic look, or something more modern?


6. Do you need TV Guardian?

This will block out most or all swear words from your movies and tapes. This feature is more common among the Sanyo brand

Browse TV Guardian Options Here.


7. Do you need a DVD VCR Combo? 

Save space by getting a DVD VCR in one. You can copy VHS to DVD with certain models too. 

Funai DV220FX4 DVD VCR Combo Player-DVD VCR Combo Player-For The Low-For The Low

Browse DVD VCR Combos Here


8. Do you require SVHS Playback / S-Video Connectivity?

If you have SVHS tapes, you want to get a compatible player. Most VCRs won’t play SVHS tapes, some VCRS will play SVHS tapes at VHS quality, and very few will play SVHS at SVHS quality. Look for a VCR with an S-Video port if you want the best quality.

JVC HR-S3902U VHS VCR Video Cassette Recorder-VCR-For The Low-For The Low


Browse S-Video VCRs Here.


9. Would you like DVHS playback?

If you want an unequaled VCR experience, get a DVHS player. It plays DVHS tapes in HD at 1080i resolution.

DVHS vcr with HDMI output 1080i


10. Would you like rapid rewind?

Rapid rewind will rewind your VHS tape in seconds. Without it, you'll be waiting a whole year for it to rewind.

Browse Options With Rapid Rewind


11. How many heads do you need?

Six head VCRs will produce high quality EP recordings .The Extended Play Recordings created by 6 head VCRs are very, very comparable to Standard Play (SP) recordings created by 4 head VCRs. 

Browse Six Head VCRs


12. Do you require front AV Ports?

Get this if you want to connect an external device easily. With a front input, it saves time and hassle from having to reach the back inputs.


13. Do you need Child Lock?

Lock the buttons on the front panel of the device so your young ones can't mess with it and lose your spot in the movie.


14. Does the Jog function pique your interest?

The jog feature allows you to adjust the speed of the video more precisely. Anywhere from .1x speed to 5x speed if the VCR is capable.

Browse Jog Dial VCRs


15. Do you require a Dual Deck VCR?

Playback two movies at once and easily dub your non copy protected movies.

GoVideo DDV9500 Dual Deck VCR Player-VCR-For The Low-For The Low

Browse Dual Deck VCRs


16. Does Commercial Skip strike your fancy?

This will seamlessly fast forward a whole 30 seconds so that you don't have to watch commercials.


17. Does adjusting tracking bother you?

There are several models that have Auto-Tracking, but if you want more control of your viewing experience, many models have the manual tracking option.


18. Is a remote necessary for your situation?

Most of the basic functions of a VCR are just as easily used from the buttons on the front of the unit as they are from the remote control. If you're just using your VCR for basic operation, maybe a unit without a remote is a price-saving option for you.


19. Do you do a lot of re-recording on one tape?

 The Flying Erase Head feature is usually found on high-end models, and works better to preserve the tape, and retain better quality after recording over a used VHS tape. If you are recording a lot to one tape, a Flying Erase Head might be something to consider.


20. Tired of sitting through annoying commercials?

The Commercial Advance feature is a must if you have a lot of things recorded from televised programs. It takes a few minutes to scan through your recording, then on playback will automatically fast forward through all commercial breaks. Movie Advance will ask if you want to either skip the previews or skip to the first preview, fast forwarding through all the useless warnings and garbage. A definite time-saver and 


Still aren't sure how to decide?- Check out our recommendations here.



456 E Juanita Ave Suite 8
Mesa, AZ 85204
(480) 207-1511


Previous article Fun Facts About VHS Tapes and VCRs
Next article How Do I Connect a VCR to my TV?

Leave a comment

Comments must be approved before appearing

* Required fields