VCR/DVDr combo player turns off when there is no light
So I'm looking at a parent's Magnavox zv420mw8 VCR/DVDr combo machine which hasn't worked properly in years by just powering off after a couple seconds of powering on. What I've discovered after playing with it is the DVD portion anyway will run correctly as long as the top of the player is removed and receiving light. If you make the room dark or cover the top with the machine with its cover it'll power itself off because of something in the VCR section. Anyone heard of sensors causing this?