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VCR Tracking Reminder IDs

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Background: Many home video companies placed these bumpers at the beginning of VHS tapes to remind the viewer about adjusting the tracking feature on their VCR for the best quality. When auto-tracking became the standard in the late 90's, these bumpers ceased to be used.

Strand/VCI EntertainmentEdit

1988-1993Edit

VCI Entertainment Tracking Control

Bumper: On a black background, the screen reads "For best picture quality, please adjust the tracking control on your VCR." in a white Arial font.

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Seen on Strand/VCI Entertainment releases such as Thomas Gets Tricked and Tenders and Turntables. Both are in EP Mode. It also made a surprise appearance on Thomas Breaks the Rules, which was actually recorded in SP Mode instead of EP.

Scare Factor: None.


GoodTimes Home VideoEdit

1984-1989Edit

GoodTimes Home Video Tracking Control

Bumper: On a black background, there is white text in a blocky font reading: "FOR BEST PICTURE QUALITY ADJUST TRACKING CONTROL" or "FOR BEST QUALITY PICTURE ADJUST TRACKING CONTROL".

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Uncommon. Seen on some GoodTimes and Kids Klassics releases of the time. Also seen on some MCA(/Universal) Home Video tapes co-distributed with GoodTimes.

Scare Factor: Minimal.

Turner Home Entertainment/GoodTimes Home Video/Orion Home Video/Cabin Fever EntertainmentEdit

1987-1992Edit

VCR Tracking Reminder IDs

Bumper: On a black/gray gradient background, we see white text reading "This video is recorded in E.P. mode. For best picture quality please adjust your tracking."

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Used on early Turner Home Entertainment releases and some by GoodTimes Home Video, Orion Home Video, and Cabin Fever Entertainment (such as Lonesome Dove).

Scare Factor: None.

Orion Home Video (standalone)Edit

1987-1998Edit

Bumper: On a blue BG with the Orion Home Video wallpaper, we see the words "This video is recorded in the EP mode. For best picture quality, adjust the tracking on your VCR".

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Seen on some Orion releases such as Mac and Me.

Scare Factor: None.

Feature Films for FamiliesEdit

1980s-2004Edit

VCR Tracking Reminder IDs-0

Bumper: On a black background, the screen reads "If the picture on your screen is not clear, please adjust the tracking on your VCR." in a white Arial font.

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Seen on certain Feature Films for Families releases.

Scare Factor: None.

UAV Corporation/Sterling Entertainment GroupEdit

1984-1988 Edit

Bumper: Over the American flag, we see the words "For best picture quality, adjust tracking control on VCR." with the wiping effect with red, white and blue lines.

FX/SFX: The wiping in of the text.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Seen on early UAV tapes.

Scare Factor: Minimal.

1989-1991Edit

Bumper: On a blue background, we see the words "For best picture quality, adjust tracking control on VCR." before the UAV logo appears.

Variant: An additional screen is used on tapes of public domain cartoons: "These classic cartoons were mastered from the best original film print available. Slight imperfections common in early cartoon animation may be visible."

FX/SFX: The fading in of the text.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Seen on UAV tapes such as Daffy Duck and 43: The Petty Story. On Samuel Goldwyn Home Entertainment releases like Southern Comfort and Lovers and Liars, the tracking control screen is replaced by the blue background variant of the 1981-2004 Warner Home Video warning.

Scare Factor: None.

1991-2004Edit

UAV Tracking Control
Sterling Entertainment Tracking Control

Bumper: On a black background, we see the words "For better picture quality adjust tracking control on your VCR" in a white typewriter-like font.

Variant: A different bolder font with a louder version of the same voiceover is on some Sterling Entertainment Group releases (and its sub-labels Gemstone Entertainment and Ovation Home Video).

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: Just a man reading the message.

Availability: Seen on some UAV tapes, such as Casper the Friendly Ghost and the UAV print of Felix the Cat. Don't expect to find this on releases with the first 2 logos, as they have their own tracking control disclaimers in their logos. This screen appeared on all UAV tapes that have the early 1990s "UAV Home Video" print logo on the box cover, but also appeared on some UAV tapes that have the "UAV Entertainment" print logo on the box cover. Most UAV tapes, such as UAV Gold releases, don't have this screen and therefore place the company's FBI warning screen at the beginning of the tape.

Scare Factor: None to minimal. If you're not expecting the man reading the message, it may scare you, but it's otherwise harmless.

Media Home Entertainment/Maier Group/Random House Home Video/StarmakerEdit

1980s-1990sEdit

Bumper: On a black background appears the white text "FOR MAXIMUM PICTURE QUALITY" and the red or blue text "IT MAY BE NECESSARY TO ADJUST THE TRACKING CONTROL ON YOUR VCR". The screen lasts for 15 seconds until it finally fades out slowly.

Variant: There is a version on a different font.

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: 3 seconds of silence, then a man reads out loud by saying "Please note: For maximum picture quality, it may be necessary to adjust the tracking control on your VCR." After that, the rest of the screen remains silent.

Music/Sounds Variant: Sometimes, a different announcer is heard on the variant.

Availability: Uncommon for the most part, but it was seen on a 1990 Media Home Entertainment Video copy of Madeline (released through Hi-Tops Video). It was also seen on some Random House Home Video releases such as a few The Bernstein Bears videos as well as Maier Group's Inspector Gadget tapes. It was also seen on some Festival of Family Classics tapes from Starmaker and the VHS of National Lampoon's Class Reunion. Also makes a surprise appearance on the VHS of Three Amigos! and The Jungle Book: Kichi Is Alone.

Scare Factor: None to minimal. If you're not expecting the man reading the message, it may scare you, but it's otherwise harmless.

Media Home Entertainment (standalone)Edit

1981-1987Edit

Bumper: On a blue background is the white text "PLEASE ADJUST TRACKING FOR BEST PICTURE QUALITY." and "THANK YOU".

Variant: On Burbank Video releases, the text is smaller and "THANK YOU" is missing.

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Seen on certain Media Home Entertainment releases of the era. It was also preserved on several Video Treasures re-releases of the aforementioned titles.

Scare Factor: None.

1987-1993Edit

Bumper: On a red/orange gradient background, there is a white figure guy holding a wrench and the white text "FOR BETTER VIDEO VIEWING HAVE VCR SERVICE CHECKS." on the top. Below them is a white bar, and underneath it is the first portion of another white text, which reads:

MEDIA HOME ENTERTAINMENT
& YOUR VIDEO ENTERTAIN-
MENT RETAILER RECOMMEND
YOU HAVE YOUR VCR
ROUTINELY SERVICED
TWICE A YEAR TO
IMPROVE THE QUALITY OF
YOUR VIEWING, PROLONG
THE LIFE OF THE VCR, AND
TO MINIMIZE THE RISK OF
DAMAGE TO THIS VIDEO
CASSETTE.

4 seconds later, the figure with the wrench slides away to the right (as if he was running) and then 5 seconds later, the bottom text scrolls up, revealing the rest of itself. After that, it stops scrolling to show the last portion.

FX/SFX: The figure sliding away, the scrolling of the second text.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Seen on certain Media Home Entertainment tapes of the era.

Scare Factor: Low.

Celebrity Home EntertainmentEdit

1985-1997Edit

Bumper: On a white background, we see the text "FOR THE BEST POSSIBLE PICTURE PLEASE ADJUST THE TRACKING KNOB ON YOUR VIDEO MACHINE", with "THE TRACKING KNOB" blinking on and off.

FX/SFX: The blinking of "THE TRACKING KNOB".

Music/Sounds: A man reading the message, which sounds like it was recorded in an auditorium.

Availability: Found on some Celebrity Home Entertainment releases, most notably the Mighty Mouse compilation tape, the Celebrity print of Superman, and the Celebrity print of Felix the Cat.

Scare Factor: None to minimal, if you're not used to the man reading the message, it may at least surprise you, but it's otherwise completely harmless.

Just for KidsEdit

1988-1995Edit

Bumper:

  • Version I: TBA
  • Version II: TBA

FX/SFX: Live-action.

Music/Sounds: Noel C. Bloom, Jr. talks about their tracking message.

Music/Sounds Variant: On some tapes that has previews at the end, Noel C. Bloom, Jr. talks about their message about their upcoming releases after the program.

Availability: The first version is extremely rare and seen on early 1-hour tapes from the era. The second version is common, and seen on Just for Kids tapes such as Gulliver's Travels, and the stay tuned version seen on some prints of Rude Dog tapes.

Scare Factor: Minimal.

Simitar EntertainmentEdit

1990?-2000Edit

Simitar Entertainment Tracking Control Navy Blue Variant
Simitar Entertainment Tracking Control

Bumper: On a sky blue background, we see the words "Recorded in EP Mode If you experience picture problems, adjust Tracking Control" in silver Times New Roman font.

FX/SFX: None.

Variant: There is an early variant which is in a blue background and is not in a gradient, and includes a different font which is narrower.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Seen on Simitar tapes with the Gold S logo (currently unknown if it appears on releases with the Other S From Hell logo). The easy way to find this is by looking at the tape to see if it says EP Mode. It was rarely seen on the Awesome Series and the I Wanna Be Series but it might be on other tapes as well, such as Godzilla tapes. The Early Variant can be seen on Awesome Airplanes, Awesome MotorcyclesAwesome Trains, The Star Packer/Lawless Range and The John Wayne Anthology. It also made a surprise appearance on Awesome Mining due to the fact that the tape has been recorded in SP Mode instead of EP.

Scare Factor: None.

Vestron VideoEdit

1989Edit

Bumper: On a blue background is the white text "This Cassette is Recorded In The Extended Play Mode. Please Adjust Tracking" in quotes.

FX/SFX: None.

Cheesy Factor: Is there really any reason for the text to be in quotations?

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Extremely rare. Found on the screener demo VHS of Gleaming the Cube.

Scare Factor: None.

Parade VideoEdit

Late 1980s-Early 1990sEdit

Bumper: On a black/blue gradient background appears the white text:

ALL VCRs ARE DIFFERENT
TRACKING ADJUSTMENT
MAY BE NECESSARY.

FX/SFX: Fading in of the text.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: This can be seen on some Parade Video releases that have been recorded in EP Mode.

Scare Factor: None.

Malofilm VideoEdit

1990sEdit

Bumper: On a black background we see the words "For Maximum Picture Quality, It May Be Necessary To Adjust The Tracking Control On Your VCR" in a typewriter-like font.

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: This can be seen on some Malofilm Video releases that have been recorded in EP Mode. It was seen on The Best of Mighty Machines.

Scare Factor: None.

Burbank VideoEdit

1985-1991Edit

Bumper: Same as the Media Home Entertainment tracking reminder, but the text is smaller and the words "THANK YOU" is missing.

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: This can be seen on some Burbank Video releases that have been recorded in EP Mode. Also seen on some Video Treasures releases such as Class.

Scare Factor: None.

Cinema ClubEdit

????Edit

Bumper: We fade in to a yellow filmstrip at the size of the screen and in the middle is a grey gradient background with "CINEMA CLUB" at the top and the tracking reminder information at the bottom reading: Cinema Club has recorded this programme on high quality video tape to provide you with great sound and vision quality." "in the unlikely event of any picture interference, please adjust your video recorder's tracking control. his will, in most cases, rectify both sound and vision quality." and the grey background and the information fades out leaving the filmstrip on screen transitioning to the warning screen.

FX/SFX: The text and the info fading out (minus the filmstrip).

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Seen on Cinema Club videos in the United Kingdom.

Scare Factor: None.

Blay Video/Embassy Home Entertainment/Nelson Entertainment Edit

(1981-1991)

Bumper: On a blue screen, we see the text "ADJUST TRACKING CONTROL FOR BEST PICTURE QUALITY".

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Seen on Blay Video, Embassy Home Entertainment, and Nelson Entertainment releases such as The People That Time Forgot and The Day After.

Scare Factor: None.

Video Treasures Edit

1985-1990 Edit

Bumper: Same as the 1981-1987 Media Home Entertainment tracking reminder.

Variant: On some releases, the text is smaller and the words "THANK YOU" is missing.

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Seen on several Video Treasures releases of the era.

Scare Factor: None.

1989-1998 Edit

Bumper: On a rocky Video Treasures wallpaper background, the words "Please adjust tracking for best picture" slide in at a slow-like speed and at both sides. They stay there for a few seconds. Later, they slide out and go backwards.

FX/SFX: The words coming in and out.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: It appears on all videos from the Video Treasures era, such as Thomas The Tank Engine, but sometimes, it skips to the FBI Warning. For some reason, this also appears on a few tapes recorded in SP mode, including Zombie. Also seen on early Anchor Bay Entertainment releases and 1995-1998 Starmaker releases.

Scare Factor: Low, as it makes a jarring cut to the FBI warning used during this era. This factor may lower for the tapes that skip this bumper altogether.

Parents Approved Video Edit

1980s Edit

Bumper: On a black background, we see the words "PLEASE ADJUST TRACKING" and "FOR BEST PICTURE QUALITY".

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Rare. Seen on the VHS of Baseball Funnies and Great Plays.

Scare Factor: None.

3-G Home Video Edit

1981-1992 Edit

Bumper: On a green-purple-orange gradient background, we see the odd font with the words "FOR BEST PICTURE ADJUST "TRACKING" ON YOUR VCR".

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: None.

Availability: Rare. Followed by the 3-G Home Video logo. Until 1986, it is after the warning screen.

Scare Factor: Low. The odd font may catch you off-guard.

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