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  #1  
Old 09-12-2015, 07:52 PM
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CoogarXR CoogarXR is offline
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Is a Fisher FVH-839 worth getting?

I have a soft spot for Fisher audio equipment. But I don't know anything about their video equipment. I saw a FVH-839 VCR at a thrift for $3. It looks like it had a ton of features for it's age (4 head, hi-fi, knobs galore, power meters, etc). I have heard fisher VCRs weren't that great, but I wondered if anybody knows this model specifically. I didn't buy it yet, but I doubt it will get away if I decide to go back for it...

Anybody know the FVH-839?
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Old 09-12-2015, 08:03 PM
dieseljeep dieseljeep is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CoogarXR View Post
I have a soft spot for Fisher audio equipment. But I don't know anything about their video equipment. I saw a FVH-839 VCR at a thrift for $3. It looks like it had a ton of features for it's age (4 head, hi-fi, knobs galore, power meters, etc). I have heard fisher VCRs weren't that great, but I wondered if anybody knows this model specifically. I didn't buy it yet, but I doubt it will get away if I decide to go back for it...

Anybody know the FVH-839?
That must be a higher end unit with power meters and such.
I , for one, couldn't understand why they were so trouble prone, VS the Sanyo's, but for three bucks, go for it.
It might be a low hours gem.
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Old 09-12-2015, 08:50 PM
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Findm-Keepm Findm-Keepm is offline
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3 bucks is a decent price - they sold new in 1989 for about 300 dollars.

I was aboard the aircraft carrier USS Forrestal for a deployment during the winter of 89/90, and the ships store sold Fisher VCRs. Every payday, they'd break them out, and sell them by the dozens to sailors, most making copies of video tapes, or taping one of the ship's movie channels. Blank tapes were a big commodity - one guy sold sealed Kodak tapes he purchased before we left homeport, and was making a pretty penny, something like 6 dollars a tape for T120 blank tapes, sealed.

I replaced a few idlers and belts, and cleaned a lot of video heads -you could smoke just about anywhere on the ship, so particulate matter was everywhere.
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Old 09-13-2015, 07:14 AM
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I had a Fisher FVH-840 for about 4 years. Built by Sanyo.

I bought it when hi-fi sound was beginning to be the rage, around 1984. It ran fine for about a year or so.

THEN:

The rewind-fast forward idler tire started slipping, along with a clutch and belt.

The parts were sold as a kit, which worried me, because they obviously knew that this thing would fail.

From then on, I replaced this kit on average every 10 months. The kits were not expensive to buy from MCM electronics, so I just kept it running.

Then, one day, the machine ate an unreplaceable tape. I removed the tape, and found the timing gear cracked.

Put it back together, and less than 2 days later, it was stolen, along with 14 repaired VCR's belonging to customers. Insurance replaced them all, including the Fisher. I hope whoever stole this junk had much trouble with it.

I never owned another (1980's and up) Sanyo VCR. Too much trouble, and impossible to find parts.
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Old 09-13-2015, 07:18 AM
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pac.attack76 pac.attack76 is offline
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I dont know about 4 head Fishers but i've had 2 of their 6 head units from around 86-87 with meters, fully loaded and i really liked them when they actually worked. Always a problem with slipping and getting the tape to move through.
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Old 09-13-2015, 08:55 AM
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I think Fisher was one of the most unreliable brands. However we were a Fisher-Sanyo authorized service center, so they kept me real busy! Rent-A-Centers etc. rented/sold tons of them. Don't recall if this model was effected but some of the mid-'80s Fishers would quit working with just one LED lit up on the front panel when the supercap for memory backup would fail. The reset circuit relied on the supercap to work.
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Old 09-13-2015, 06:05 PM
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CoogarXR CoogarXR is offline
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Nice info guys, thanks. I think I'll leave it. My "fix pile" is big enough, lol.
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  #8  
Old 09-14-2015, 01:21 PM
centralradio centralradio is offline
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I have my dads and my cousins Fisher FVH 990 VCRs.They were good at the time.I know they sometimes get the munchies and eat some tapes but they were great to use.

For $3 bucks .Where can you go wrong even if its a dead unit.

I'll offer them a buck for it just for parts.

Hahahaha.I understand about big piles of VCRs.I got them in my shed,garage,basement and a spare room.
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  #9  
Old 06-14-2016, 02:03 PM
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I just picked up an FVH-839 for $4.99 from the Goodwill outlet.

It's true that Fisher VCRs were unreliable (mostly due to the poor design of the idler drive). Interestingly, Sanyo and Fisher VCRs used a completely different design until the late 80's. The Sanyos were much more reliable, but didn't offer as many features as the better Fishers.

It's also true that with The FVH-839-840-960 a bad clock backup supercap will cause the syscon circuit to freeze when plugged in. You can work around it by holding down the reset button inside the top control panel when you plug it in.

Finally, if anyone has a parts machine, I could use some cosmetic parts for mine. Mainly, it's missing the play button.
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  #10  
Old 06-24-2016, 03:09 AM
jmm83 jmm83 is offline
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I have parts for this vcr let me know what you need. i have all the boards from it
i have a front panel it has all the buttons. i can send you a picture of it
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  #11  
Old 04-05-2017, 11:29 PM
waltchan waltchan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed in Tx View Post
I think Fisher was one of the most unreliable brands. However we were a Fisher-Sanyo authorized service center, so they kept me real busy! Rent-A-Centers etc. rented/sold tons of them. Don't recall if this model was effected but some of the mid-'80s Fishers would quit working with just one LED lit up on the front panel when the supercap for memory backup would fail. The reset circuit relied on the supercap to work.
According to Studio Sound Electronics' owner, he repeatedly told me the 1987 Fisher VCRs and newer suddenly became one of the more-reliable VCRs he'd seen when they started sharing parts with Sanyo models, and you can ignore what people tell you on Fisher's poor VCR reliability. Only the 1982-1986 were the bad ones with idler problems that received 35% failure rate by Consumer Reports. I'll e-mail to him again for another verification.

Last edited by waltchan; 04-05-2017 at 11:48 PM.
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  #12  
Old 04-06-2017, 02:44 PM
centralradio centralradio is offline
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I have my fathers and my cousins FVH-990 VCRs here.They were considered to be top of the line at that time.Yes .Ditto on the idler issue. The only problems they had with those VCRs was the idler tire and belts issues.Other then that they worked great.I would grab it for that price.I rather have any 1970's , 80's and some early 1990's VCRs .The later 1990s VCR when they started to turn into junk.



Google search Info on the FVH-839.

https://www.google.com/search?q=FVH-...IKz_7xTIhyQMM:
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