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Thread: How do I convert VHS to DVD?

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  1. #1
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    Unhappy How do I convert VHS to DVD?

    I am sitting on over a hundred Disney and other kid's VHS tapes we still have around from when our kids were little. My granddaughter has found them and finds them fantastically entertaining but VHS isn't exactly hardy for a 4 year old to handle. I'm looking to convert them to DVD for both backup and space savings. Cinderella has already bit the dust and I'm paying dearly for it. I have done some research and every bit of information assumes that I would have an idea of what I'm doing. I do own a DVR but most of them won't copy for copy protect reasons. As far as I can tell the only way I can convert them is by going from analog VHS to digital DVD. Now, I have no clue how to do this nor what hardware I would need if any to do this. I don't know how to hook the VCR to the computer. I'm assuming someone else has run into this problem. If anyone can walk me through this, I will be infinitely grateful. Save me!!

  2. #2
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    Re: How do I convert VHS to DVD?

    Quote Originally Posted by trooperchix View Post
    I am sitting on over a hundred Disney and other kid's VHS tapes we still have around from when our kids were little. My granddaughter has found them and finds them fantastically entertaining but VHS isn't exactly hardy for a 4 year old to handle. I'm looking to convert them to DVD for both backup and space savings. Cinderella has already bit the dust and I'm paying dearly for it. I have done some research and every bit of information assumes that I would have an idea of what I'm doing. I do own a DVR but most of them won't copy for copy protect reasons. As far as I can tell the only way I can convert them is by going from analog VHS to digital DVD. Now, I have no clue how to do this nor what hardware I would need if any to do this. I don't know how to hook the VCR to the computer. I'm assuming someone else has run into this problem. If anyone can walk me through this, I will be infinitely grateful. Save me!!
    Ok, you have several options.

    1. If you have money to burn, bring all your VHS tapes to Wal-Mart or Walgreens for the conversion.

    2. Option # 2 - Do not use Linux because there is no simple way to do this (yes, I have searched and posted for help in this forum without any success). If you have Windows XP (with Service Pack 2) somewhere this would work smoothly.

    Buy a USB video capture device such as Dazzle (made by Pinnacle) from Best Buy for @ $100.00.

    Install the software then hookup Dazzle.

    Buy a Y-audio cable from Radioshack (@$4.00). Plug this cable to the back of your VCR Audio Out (most likely a Mono single plug. If you have stereo out then you do not need the cable).

    Plug the Video (yellow) and Audio cables (red and white connected to the Y-cable) from your VCR to Dazzle.

    Start the software, put in a blank DVD (I assume you have a DVD recorder on your computer - if not, you can get one from Newegg for less than $30.00), hit play on your VCR and start recording.

    3. Option 3 - Buy expensive Video Capture Device. The drawback - Dazzle software can only record 104 minutes. If your movie is longer than that you would have to spend a lot more money for better capturing devices.

    Good luck.

    You can contact me directly if you need additional help.
    Last edited by dnguyen1963; March 4th, 2010 at 11:11 PM.

  3. #3
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    Re: How do I convert VHS to DVD?

    To be honest, the best way could be to accept that technology has moved on and get yourself a cheap DVD recorder (or even hard disk recorder) for TV broadcasts, and simply link a scart cable from the video recorder to the DVD recorder input. Very simple, and you will get better recordings of TV as well.

  4. #4
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    Re: How do I convert VHS to DVD?

    Quote Originally Posted by ajgreeny View Post
    To be honest, the best way could be to accept that technology has moved on and get yourself a cheap DVD recorder (or even hard disk recorder) for TV broadcasts, and simply link a scart cable from the video recorder to the DVD recorder input. Very simple, and you will get better recordings of TV as well.
    Ahh...the problem is that most DVD recorder do not allow recording of copy-righted movies even though we already paid for all those movies. Some of us are still fond of the old movies. Would you spend money on a new DVD format movie if you can easily convert your old VHS format into DVD?

  5. #5
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    Re: How do I convert VHS to DVD?

    I concur that where possible, you should buy a DVD version of your movie. The quality will usually be better, and many DVD versions of movies come with extra features like multiple sound tracks, commentaries, and other extra features that you might enjoy. There's also less risk of potential copyright hassles.

    Having said that, there are options. One of the gadgets I use (for stuff I've recorded myself of course!) is a combination VCR and DVD recorder. I load up the VHS tape and a blank DVD, make sure the tape is rewound, press one button, and most of the work is done.

    I also have a combo HDD/DVD recorder daisy chained off a VHS player which I've used for friends home movies. I copy the footage to the HDD, and when I'm satisfied that copy has worked satisfactoraily (some of the tapes I've encountered have seen better days), I transfer it to a DVD+RW and from there to my computer where I can clean things up a bit if needed, put in custom chapters and other nice things to impress them.
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  6. #6
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    Re: How do I convert VHS to DVD?

    You can get a DVD & VHS combo some of them you can copy from VHS to DVD.

  7. #7
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    Re: How do I convert VHS to DVD?

    Quote Originally Posted by lisati View Post
    I concur that where possible, you should buy a DVD version of your movie. The quality will usually be better, and many DVD versions of movies come with extra features like multiple sound tracks, commentaries, and other extra features that you might enjoy. There's also less risk of potential copyright hassles.

    Having said that, there are options. One of the gadgets I use (for stuff I've recorded myself of course!) is a combination VCR and DVD recorder. I load up the VHS tape and a blank DVD, make sure the tape is rewound, press one button, and most of the work is done.

    I also have a combo HDD/DVD recorder daisy chained off a VHS player which I've used for friends home movies. I copy the footage to the HDD, and when I'm satisfied that copy has worked satisfactoraily (some of the tapes I've encountered have seen better days), I transfer it to a DVD+RW and from there to my computer where I can clean things up a bit if needed, put in custom chapters and other nice things to impress them.

    Well, these VHS-DVD recorder combos work well with home-made VHS tapes. They WILL NOT record any copy-righted movies, especially the old Disney movies (the original post was asking for a way to make backup of paid commercial movies). By the way, I am not promoting any illegal activity. It costs money to make the movies so we should pay for them. Most of the movies boxes clearly state that copying the movies is strictly prohibited. I am not sure if we are even allowed make backups of the movies that we have already paid for. Personally, if I want to watch an old movie I just check it out of the library.
    Last edited by dnguyen1963; March 8th, 2010 at 04:23 PM.

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