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Converting VHS to digital


Novice Member
Hope I am in the right place, I am not a techinical guy but I am reliably informed you are the guys to ask.

The plan is to copy a few VHS tapes to DVD/USB stick. I have looked at Amazon and most products don't review particularly well and seem expensive for what appears to be a cable to connect the VCR to a laptop.

My laptop runs Vista basic and I have Nero 9 installed (if that helps).

Any advice on the software/hardware required and perhaps an idea of the process involved would be gratefully received.


In memoriam
It's not just a cable. To convert analogue video to DVD requires.

The analogue data to be digitised (Analogue to Digital Converter - ADC)

Imagine a PC scanner which converts a photograph to a digital file.

The resulting data then has to be compressed using the mpeg2 codec.

A DVD recorder will do both jobs, note commercial VCR tapes may have macrovision copy protection that makes it difficult to transfer to DVD.


Prominent Member
Connecting a VCR to a DVD recorder or using a DVD/VCR combi is about the simplest transfer method available.

If you want to transfer via your laptop, you will need to get yourself a capture device. These start at around £10 for an entry level device – search for ‘easyCAP’ as an example.

More expensive options are available from Roxio (Easy VHS to DVD) and Pinnacle (Dazzle DVD Recorder). I imagine they include better capture software than cheaper devices, but can’t say for sure.


Novice Member
If you do it yourself with a consumer VHS player (and a video grabber like Magix), the results maybe not as good as you would have them to be. They are very poor. For previous recorded TV show, maybe it would be fine. But if you want to store your family home video´s, you better look for professional (broadcast-) equipment like the Panasonic AG-7750. I made a comparison of 1 movie played on a consumer player and the same selection on the professional broadcast player Panasonic AG-7750. You can watch this video at my webpage video to dvd (it´s only in dutch). Enjoy it and make your decision.


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