FANDOM


White Screen of Death

What happens when a tape from Thorn EMI, Columbia, Paramount, or MCA tape from the early to mid '80s ends

The Bell & Howell - Video Systems/Rank Video Services America/Deluxe Video Laboratories test pattern is a British-Worldwide test card that appears at the end of a videocassette that is duplicated at Bell & Howell - Video Systems, Rank Video Services America and Deluxe Video Laboratories. It actually looks more grayish in color when compared to real white, but people call it the White Screen of Death because it comes after a black screen on a videocassette and does so in a manner that may startle most inattentive viewers. It has so far appeared on Rank-duplicated tapes distributed by: 


Here is what tones were used on tapes from these companies:

400hz (Lowest Pitched)Edit

  1. Columbia Pictures Home Entertainment (in 1982)
  2. RCA/Columbia Pictures Home Video (in 1982-1983)
  3. MCA Videocassette Inc. (in 1982)
  4. Golden Book Video (1985) (Heard on a pressing of Mercer Mayer's Stories)

500hz (Lowest Pitched)Edit

  1. Paramount Home Video (heard on a 1980 pressing of The Shootist)
  2. MSD Video (heard on a 1986 pressing of The Adventures of Classic Cartoons: Woody Woodpecker and Friends)

880hz (Lower Pitched)Edit

During this tone, a single click can be heard every second.

  1. MCA Videocassette Inc. (1980-1981)
  2. Paramount Home Video (1981) (some tapes)

933hz (Low Pitched)Edit

  1. Paramount Home Video (heard on a 1984 pressing of Hatari)
  2. MCA/Universal Home Video (on some printings of The War)
  3. RCA/Columbia Pictures Home Video (on some printings of Shocking Treasure)
  4. FoxVideo (on some printings of True Lies)

963hz (Low Pitched)Edit

  1. Fotomat Video (heard on a 1979 pressing of Nashville)
  2. RCA/Columbia Pictures Home Video (in 1983)

1000hz (Normal Pitched)Edit

  1. Paramount Home Video (Slightly higher pitched 1020hz tone as heard on a pressing of Footloose 1984 VHS)
  2. Walt Disney Home Video (heard on tapes distributed by VideoVisa)
  3. MCA Videocassette Inc.
  4. MCA Home Video
  5. MCA/Universal Home Video
  6. Columbia Pictures Home Entertainment
  7. RCA/Columbia Pictures Home Video
  8. Columbia TriStar Home Video
  9. SVS Triumph
  10. Sony Wonder
  11. Diamond Entertainment Corporation (heard on some copies of Legends of Entertainment Video among other tapes.)
  12. MGM Home Entertainment (on tapes distributed by VideoVisa)
  13. Warner Home Video (heard on some pressings of Batman, Wrongfully Accused, City Of Angels, Battlefield Earth, Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever and The Avengers and on tapes distributed by VideoVisa)
  14. D.K. Vision (Dorling Kindersley) (heard on some pressings of the Hullaballoo Videos)
  15. New Line Home Video (heard on some pressings of Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me)
  16. CBS/Fox Video (some tapes)
  17. Key Video (some tapes)
  18. Playhouse Video (some tapes)
  19. FoxVideo
  20. 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment (heard on a 1999 British pressing of The Simpsons: Oh Brother Where Art Thou?)
  21. View Master Video
  22. Thorn EMI/HBO/Cannon Video
  23. J2 Communications
  24. Golden Book Video
  25. Random House Home Video
  26. Pacific Arts
  27. Feature Films For Families
  28. Brentwood Home Video
  29. International Video Entertainment
  30. Live Home Video
  31. Family Home Entertainment
  32. Hallmark Home Entertainment
  33. Vidmark Entertainment
  34. Simon & Schuster Video
  35. Republic Pictures Home Video
  36. Price/Stern/Sloan Video
  37. Nintendo of America INC
  38. VideoVisa Video
  39. Central Park Media
  40. Continental Video
  41. RTC Video
  42. Tycoon Home Video
  43. Spartan Home Entertainment
  44. Mattel Video (heard on a pressing of The Story of P.J. Sparkles)
  45. MSD Video

1120hz (High Pitched)Edit

  1. Paramount Home Video (heard on a 1980 pressing of Star Trek: The Motion Picture)
  2. MCA Videocassette Inc. (heard on a 1981 pressing of Flash Gordon)
  3. Family Home Entertainment (heard on a 1995 pressing of Nick & Noel)

1200hz (Higher Pitched)Edit

  1. Fotomat Video
  2. MCA Videocassette Inc. (heard on a 1982 pressing of The Amazing Spider-Man)

With clickingEdit

  1. Paramount Home Video (sometimes with an 880 Hz tone)
  2. MCA Videocassette Inc. (with an 880 Hz tone)
  3. MCA Home Video
  4. MCA/Universal Home Video
  5. RCA/Columbia Pictures Home Video
  6. Columbia TriStar Home Video
  7. SVS Triumph
  8. Sony Wonder
  9. Warner Home Video (heard on some early pressings of Batman)
  10. CBS/Fox Video
  11. Key Video
  12. Playhouse Video
  13. FoxVideo
  14. View Master Video (sometimes with letterboxing)
  15. J2 Communications
  16. Golden Book Video (sometimes with letterboxing)
  17. Random House Home Video (sometimes with letterboxing)
  18. Pacific Arts
  19. International Video Entertainment (sometimes with letterboxing)
  20. Live Home Video
  21. Family Home Entertainment (sometimes with letterboxing)
  22. Vidmark Entertainment
  23. Simon & Schuster Video
  24. Republic Pictures Home Video
  25. Price/Stern/Sloan Video
  26. Central Park Media
  27. Mattel Video (heard on a pressing of The Story of P.J. Sparkles)

Letterboxed with red barsEdit

This variant only appears on SLP-mode tapes and some SP-mode tapes from before late 1989.

  1. Golden Book Video
  2. International Video Entertainment
  3. Family Home Entertainment
  4. View Master Video
  5. Random House Home Video

SilentEdit

Sometimes, a version with no tone can be heard. This is usually seen on tapes duplicated somewhere other than B&H/Rank/Deluxe, such as:

  1. Simon and Schuster Video (1986)
  2. Blockbuster Video (1993)
  3. WorldVision Entertainment (1993) Seen on a pressing of Happily Ever After.
  4. Universal Studios Home Video Canada (2001) Seen on a Canadian pressing of Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas.
  5. ABC Video (1994): Seen on a pressing of Leslie Nielsen's Bad Golf Made Easier.
  6. MCA/Universal Home Video (1995): Seen on a pressing of Freddie the Frog.
  7. Nintendo of America INC. (1997-2000)
  8. Sony Music Entertainment (1994-1999, 2002): Seen on pressings of The Beginner's Bible: The Story of Noah and Elmo's World Family Feature, perhaps among other tapes.
  9. Sony Wonder (1994-1999, 2002): Seen on pressings of The Beginner's Bible: The Story of Noah and Elmo's World Family Feature, perhaps among other tapes.
  10. Columbia Music Video (1994-1997)
  11. Epic Music Video (1994-1997)
  12. Random House Home Video (1997): Seen on a pressing of Green Eggs And Ham.
  13. Pioneer Entertainment (1999): Seen on a pressing of the English-subtitled version of Sailor Moon S: Hearts in Ice.
  14. Walt Disney Home Video (2001): Seen on a pressing of Recess: School's Out.
  15. Manga Entertainment (2002): Seen on a pressing of the English-dubbed version of The End of Evangelion.
  16. VCI Entertainment (2005)
  17. Dreamworks Home Entertainment (2000-2005): Seen on a pressing of The Road To El Dorado as well as a pressing of Shark Tale
  18. Sony Pictures Home Entertainment (2005)

Other colorsEdit

This test pattern has also been seen in other colors apart from white.

BlackEdit

  • The Adventures of Classic Cartoons: Woody Woodpecker and Friends (MSD Video, 1986 pressing, 500 Hz tone)
  • Battlestar Galactica (MCA Videocassette Inc, 1980 pressing, 1000 Hz tone)
  • Catch-22 (Paramount Home Video, 1982 pressing, 1000 Hz tone)
  • Escape from Alcatraz (Paramount Home Video, 1983 pressing, 1000 Hz tone)
  • The Shootist (Paramount Home Video, 1980 pressing, 500 Hz tone)
  • Smokey and the Bandit (MCA Videocassette Inc, 1980 pressing, 1000 Hz tone)

Lime greenEdit

  • Nashville (Fotomat, 1979 pressing, 963 Hz tone)

Red Edit

  • The Simpsons: Oh Brother Where Art Thou? (FOX, 1999 UK Pressing, 1000 Hz tone)

How to Find a Tape With This Ending Edit

  • To find White Screen of Death and the Moaning Sound at the end of a tape, make sure that there's a sticker under the tape label and no barcode on the tape guard.