The EVR Player, rare as hens teeth

This page is an important plea for help

Do you have any familiarity with either of these?

A Motorola/Hitachi EVR player


A Rank EVR player

Electronic Video Recording(EVR)  was a format intended for playback only, where the luminance and chrominance signals were recorded in a unique way. The film was about the size of an 8mm film but had two tracks of photographic frames. One track contained a normal monochrome image or luminance track, while the other contained a pictorial representation of the chrominance waveform information. The player read both tracks back simultaneously using a flying spot scanner device, and thus re-assembled a good colour picture.

I do not know how popular these were, but they seem to be very rare, and I had been told they were used, for example, on oil rigs. Films were hired rather than bought, so the existence of the films seems to be even rarer.

I have two examples of the machines. One, I was told, was sold off in quantities to radio amateurs in the 1970s to experiment with the manufacture of flying spot scanners for amateur TV. That is the older version I have, badged by Hitachi, but possibly actually by Motorola. Possibly dating from the late sixties?

The other is a more recent model, probably from the early 1970s, which is British built by Rank. There seems to be one of these later Rank machines in the science museum. I have not heard of anyone who claims to have one that works, most do not have films.

The important point to make here is that I have a number of these films which appear to contain episodes of material which may be offically missing believed wiped. For example, The Avengers, Benny Hill etc etc.

My Hitachi machine appears to work to some extent, and I may yet have some success with it, but I need to make belts and the other problem is that it is an NTSC 60 Hz machine and probably will play the UK films at the wrong speed, but this may or may not be overcome in various ways.

The Rank machine appears to have a CRT with blown heaters, so is a none starter for me.

My plea would be for anyone who may have access to the service manuals for either machine. I only have a circuit diagram for one of the Motorola versions which differs from mine. Or, possibly, access to another machine that may work, or even another Rank machine that may be able to yield a good CRT.

These films are important, and something needs to be done to save the material on them.

Can you help?

If you can, please email me,  Martin

Thank you.

UPDATE February 2014

I have been loaned another Rank machine by a good friend, which has an intact CRT heater (currently!) and so far I have been producing sound and pictures from it! More work is needed to repair a second failure of the power supplies but after that I am optimistic that cleaning and adjustment may enable me to play and copy the rare TV programmes on the films I have. Progress is very slow because I STILL need the technical sevice manual!! I am working blind having to draw out circuits and work out how everything works, which takes hours and hours. Can you help??

If you can, please email me,  Martin

UPDATE April 2014

It works! Its been hard work and a long and frustrating journey, but the EVR plays the monochrome films I have, now to find out if  I have anything valuable and missing on them!

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