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Thread: another question for the techie types

  1. #1
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    another question for the techie types

    With the discussion about longevity of floppies and such, it occurred to me that we have a VHS tape in the safe deposit box that has tremendous personal value to our family.
    I contacted a business locally that has been in the video business for more than thirty years. He told me that VHS images cannot be transferred to CDs or DVDs, only the audio was transferable.
    Seems strange to me since so many old movies are now available on CD and DVD. But, wadda I know?
    In fact, I have been under the impression home equipment was available that would allow this to be done on a computer that can burn CDs and DVDs.
    Wadda y'all know about this?
    "Folks is funny critters."

    Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. ~Voltaire

  2. #2
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    Hey Frank the guy is nuts I copied a couple of VHS tape to DVD so I could watch them in the shop. I had a VCR and DVD recorder that I bought from Wally World it crapped out or I would do it for you.
    Jay

  3. #3
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    Your local guy is blowing smoke. Lotsa ways it can be done.

    http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q...&aq=1&oq=vhs+t

    Probably the most straightforward way is with a set-top DVD recorder like Jay used...something like this:

    http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Sony+-+F...dvd%20recorder

    Or a little less expensive, a video converter that send the VCR signal to your computer for recording on the DVD burner...

    http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Pinnacle...dvd%20recorder

    For a single tape, I'm sure you can probably find companies on the Web who already have the equipment, and can do the conversion for less that it'd cost to buy your own. If you want to convert several tapes, it might be worth the investment to get your own recorder (or video converter that will use the DVD burner in your computer).
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
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  4. #4
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    Some camcorders actually give you the ability to do this. Hang with me here for a minute...

    I've got a little sony handy cam that has a firewire out. I can also use it as a 'recorder'. I've hooked up the firewire to the pc, and the camcorder to ANY video source that has an RCA plug out for video and RCA plug (or two for stereo) for audio.

    Using my camcorder as an intermediary, I can stream the video from that source (perhaps a VHS recorder) straight into a video editing program on my pc. Works like a charm, but it was a pain to figure out how to do it...
    Programmer - An organism that turns coffee into software.
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  5. #5
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    I think Walmart, Samsclub and Costco photocenters offer this service. I bet CVS and Walgreens provide the service as well.
    Dan Gonzales
    Whittier, CA, USA
    Dona nobis pacem

  6. #6
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    Thanks all, I might just buy one of those units and do it myself. We have a lot of other memory tapes that would be nice saved on DVD. This particular one is, for us, super special, that's why I keep it in the safe deposit box at the bank.
    I figgered it had to be simple.
    And, this guy is supposed to be an expert. He makes videos for commercials and stuff. Oh, well.
    "Folks is funny critters."

    Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. ~Voltaire

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Fusco View Post
    And, this guy is supposed to be an expert. He makes videos for commercials and stuff. Oh, well.
    Frank,

    Don't blame him too much. In lay terms, the VHS will be much lower quality than people are used to with DVDs. It's possible he's been burned by high customer expectations on quality issues over which he has no control. It's pretty tough to get HD quality off a VHS tape...

    Thanks,

    Bill

  8. #8
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    I think the issue is still photos - it's possible to capture them, though they'll look awful.

    You can get video input devices for the PC relatively cheaply, though the easiest option is to find someone with a direct video-input DVD burner and use it instead. Buying such a burner secondhand may actually be cheaper than many VHS-to-DVD services, though not by much.

  9. #9
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    Frank, another option would be an all-in-one combo VCR/DVD box that does it all with the push of a button or two:

    eBay Listings


    Not necessarily saying eBay is the way to go (although I've had good success with new electronics on eBay), but it shows there are some pretty reasonably priced devices out there.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Lantry View Post
    Frank,

    Don't blame him too much. In lay terms, the VHS will be much lower quality than people are used to with DVDs. It's possible he's been burned by high customer expectations on quality issues over which he has no control. It's pretty tough to get HD quality off a VHS tape...

    Thanks,

    Bill
    I rephrased the question - again. He responded moments ago saying he can do it. I'll probably let him do it. I know he has professional grade equipment and the price is only $25.00. I can burn copies.
    But, I will look into the items mentioned here. We have many 'memory' type tapes I would like preserved.
    "Folks is funny critters."

    Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. ~Voltaire

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