A system and methods are disclosed for monitoring a home TV viewing system which may include a TV, a VCR and one or more cable converters. The system obtains information for identifying the source of video displayed or being recorded, i.e., off-air antenna, satellite antenna, cable converter tuner, VCR, personal computer, video game, etc. The system also obtains information identifying the video path of the video being displayed and/or recorded. The system "fingerprints" video recorded by the VCR so that the played back video may be identified as having been previously recorded. The system may record the date and time of recording and the video source of the video being recorded. The system includes probe/detector devices which obtain signals related to the frequency to which the TV, VCR, and cable converter are tuned, and a higher level processor which receives and processes those signals to identify channel tuning of the TV, VCR, and cable converter. The probe/detector monitoring the VCR includes a lower level processor and circuitry which fingerprint a video signal being recorded by the VCR. The system generates timing signals to record and detect fingerprints in the vertical blanking interval of the TV signal. The system has multi-level processing, and may be programmed to include a number of down-loadable and up-loadable parameters. The system also includes an alphanumeric display and data entry unit for each TV being monitored, and provides for interactive information entry by TV viewers including guests and by an installer.