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Long play on DVD-R disks

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD Players & Recorders' started by Schumi, Feb 5, 2005.

  1. Schumi

    Schumi
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    I have a DVD/VHS combo, and I am looking to transfer some programmes I have on tape to DVD-R disks. I wouldn't normally think about using long play etc, as if the quality is anything similar to VHS, it will be very poor. But the disks I have can only hold 2 hours, which obviously wouldn't be enough if I wanted to copy over 3 hours of programming.

    Any advice would be great, thanks.
     
  2. jpurkey

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    All DVD-R discs should hold up to either 6 or 8 hours (depending on the recorder) in EP mode. However, at over 2 1/2 to 3 hours the quality does becomes poor, especially if there is any fast motion.

    One way to avoid the quality problem when copying tapes is to split the copy between two discs. I've started doing that on some of my VHS to DVD copies, especially when it is a two part movie and the total time is >3:00. I'd rather have to swap discs when watching the movie instead of ending up with a copy at a quality I'm not happy with.
     
  3. Rasczak

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    What DVDR/VCR combi do you have Schumi? If it is Panasonic or JVC then you have Flexible Record which can still achieve decent results at under 3hrs. Frankly though I would try to avoid putting more than 90mins content on a DVDR from a VHS recording if you can help it.

    You could always consider the PC route. Use your VCR/DVDR recorder to record the long programme in two parts to seperate DVD-RAM/DVD-RW and use a PC DVD authoring package and a 8.5GB DVD+R DL disc. See the 'DVD-RAM to DVD-R' link in my signature for advice on that.
     
  4. Schumi

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    It's a panasonic. I can use DVD-RAM and DVD-R disks to record, but not DVD-RW. I haven't as yet copied anything over from VHS to DVD, so I'll have to look over the instructions to see how it is done. I'm thinking it's best to leave it at 2 hours, as I want all recordings to be of decent quality.

    I also have a DVD-RAM disk, which was expensive, and that is double sided. The man in the shop said these are ideal for regular recordings, but not if you want to keep things on them, as buying a load of them will cost a lot of money. As far as I know, both sides of the disk can hold 4.7GB, which is 4 hours. That makes it an 8 hour disk. Does that sound about right?

    Any help would be great, thanks.
     
  5. jpurkey

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    Each side of a DVD-RAM disc can hold up to 8 hours. Picture quality at 8 hours is bad, but if you need to record a lot overnight and don't have a recorder with a hard drive then they do come in handy. I use DVD-RAM for time-shifting and they are great since they can be re-used 100,000 times (or so the specs claim.)

    I'd do recommend getting the cartridge type as they protect the discs inside from dirt and dust, which can cause recording errors. There is a seller on eBay who sells a 10 pack of double sided DVD-RAM cartridges for $43 and that price includes shipping within the U.S.
     
  6. Rasczak

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    DVD-RAMs can be picked up very cheaply these days (as little as £2 each - which isn't much more than a branded DVD-R disc) - and are ideal for long term storage of recordings. However what prevents many people from using these exclusively is their lack of compatibility with existing DVD players.

    You can fit anywhere between 1 hour and 8 hours onto a DVD-RAM. Obviously the picture quality reduces the more time you put on a disc. Have a look here for an explanation.

    I suggest you try some test recordings to DVD-RAM so you can judge picture quality before you try to properly archive anything. This will allow you to determine how much you want to put per disc. Some people are quite happy with the 4 hour mode, others won't put more than 90mins per disc. It all depends on your personal preferences and the size and quality of your TV/screen.
     
  7. El_JimBob

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    It might also be worth mentioning that half-res mode on dvd recorders can sometimes lessen the effect of 'grain' from VCR transfers, making the end result far easier on the eye, albeit losing some of the finer details....
     
  8. SDHoward

    SDHoward
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    That aside the resolution of a standard VHS tape is probably about half res....
     

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