Please Help with NTSC Video to PAL DVD Transfer

lowdowndave

Standard Member
Hi everyone. I'm new-ish to the forum (been lurking quite a bit as I'm about to purchase a HDTV) and have a question. I emigrated back to the UK from Canada a few years ago and brought with me a number of VHS home videos which were recorded using NTSC format over there. With VCRs quickly disappearing, I want to convert these video tapes to DVD before the VCR becomes completely extinct. I was wondering whether it would be possible to simply (or not so simply these days) buy a VCR (as my last one packed up) and send the NTSC video signal from the VCR to my Sony DVD recorder to record my videos onto (assumedly PAL) DVD? I know it is possible to WATCH NTSC videos using most of the available VCRs in this country, but I wasn't sure if the NTSC signal is converted BY the VCR when it leaves the VCR, or whether it is the TV that translates the NTSC signal into PAL for viewing. If it is the latter, then I assume I can NOT record my NTSC vids using a VCR with a PAL DVD recorder. I've also seen there are a few companies on the net that will transfer NTSC vids to PAL DVD for you, but I'd rather not post my vids if they could potentially get lost (lots of old family stuff I wouldn't want to lose as they are the only copy) and there is also a cost issue. As I have quite a few vids to convert, it would be cheaper to buy a VCR if this set-up will work. Any help/advice (better transfer method suggestions) you can give me would be greatly appreciated.
 

jetinder

Active Member
If your VCR can play NTSC tapes then in theory you could hook your PAL-DVD recorder to your VCR and copy the VHS tapes to DVD.

or

Buy some thing like Magix Movie Edit, hook your VCR to your PC via the tv card and sound card, record the VHS tape in to the PC.

Then via Magix Movie Edit convert that to PAL DVD and save it.

I did that with a few American VHS tapes i had and it works.

or

Get one of these VCRs with built in DVD recorders
:-
http://www.nextag.co.uk/Samsung-VCR-Recorder-DVD-540143524/uk/prices-html

Then just put the VHS tape in, follow on screen instructions and let the VCR transfere your NTSC tapes to DVD.
 

redsox_mark

Distinguished Member
Capture to PC; using a TV card or other device to convert ( e.g. camcorder with DV in) will certainly work.

Recording on a DVD recorder may or may not work, depends if the recorder will accept a PAL60 signal. (VCRs which play NTSC tapes convert them to PAL60, which PAL TVs will play).
 

lowdowndave

Standard Member
Cheers for all the suggestions. I've got an eMac, so I suppose I'd need some different software to peform the conversions, but you've definitely given me some other options to consider. By the sounds of it, I'm going to need a new VCR in any case, so may as well make the purchase and try to transfer to my DVD Recorder. If that doesn't work, then I'll think about the other options. The VCR/DVD multi-recorder could be a good idea, but potentially a little expensive if I can successfully transfer using other methods. I've bookmarked that model as a Plan B/C as it seems a lot of the combi units don't play NTSC video tapes. Reading the specs on that model provided me with yet another learning experience. NTSC 3.58 vs NTSC 4.43!!! The confusion never ends!
 

redsox_mark

Distinguished Member
Yes....

The PAL that we have here is 4.43 MHz. NTSC 4.43 is the proper name for what is commonly called PAL60. I.e. what a PAL VCR which can play NTSC tapes does is convert the colour information to something which resembles 4.43MHz PAL, whilst keeping the 60 fields per second.

So what you need to check is will the DVD recorder handle this NTSC 4.43 (PAL 60) input correctly. I think some will and some won't.
 

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