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VHS to DVD using miniDV Camcorder

Discussion in 'Digital camcorders' started by andhrite, Sep 2, 2004.

  1. andhrite

    andhrite Guest

    I want to transfer my old VHS cassettes to hard drive and then make DVD out of it. One way to do is to buy a video capture card and try to get it straight from VCR. But lot of people complained about the quality of the capture being very poor. Besides i donot want to spend money just for VHS transfer.
    The way iam thinking is to connect VCR to a DV camcorder. Play VHS in VCR and get the picture in camcorder. At the same time connect the camcorder to a laptop via firewire and capture it on hard drive. This should be possible right?
    Did anyone try this and succeed?
    Also do i need to record on a mini DV tape and then capture on HD or can i play and directly capture at the same time.
    Please post your opinions.
     
  2. vurbal

    vurbal Administrator Staff Member

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    Yes you can use a DV camera for that. Whether you need to record to a tape first depends on whether yours has a "pass-through" feature or not. If it does, you can use that to simply convert to DV on the fly and send it to your PC. Otherwise you'll have to record to a tape first.
     
  3. andhrite

    andhrite Guest

    Thanks for the reply.
    How do i know if the camcorder has passthru feature or not. I mean will i know only after testing or will it be given somewhere in the manual.
     
  4. vurbal

    vurbal Administrator Staff Member

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    It should say in the manual.
     
  5. andhrite

    andhrite Guest

    I was able to do the VHS to digital conversion with out any capturing cards.
    You need :
    VCR (stereo)
    DV Camera
    Computer with firewire port
    Firewire cable.
    Capturing software (Movie maker, premiere pro etc)

    Procedure
    Connect the VCR out to DV camcorder. Set the menu option in camcorder to accept the video. Play a VHS in VCR and you should be able to see the film in camcorder. If you could not, read the camcorder manual. Once you get that part working, connect the DV output of your camcorder to PC using firewire cable.
    Then use any software to capture the video.
    one thing is you should have lots of hard drive. 10 GB for every 1 hour video.
     
  6. andhrite

    andhrite Guest

    One small thing is that i was able to do this as my camcorder allowed the passthrough.
    If not, you will have to record the VHS in the DV tape and then transfer it to computer.
     
  7. dougal58

    dougal58 Regular member

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    Hi andhrite,
    I tried to transfer vhs the way you did it and any software i use stops after 23 seconds,What it does copy is excellent quality but i can't get it to record the full tape,I have plenty space on my hdd about 15 gig and my camera has passthrough but i can't find the manual,Maybe i'm missing something that's in the manual,Any ideas?.
    Cheers
     
  8. andhrite

    andhrite Guest

    Hi dougal58,

    Iam not sure why but i was able to copy 2.5 hours with out any issue.
    Basic questions.
    I hope your tape is more than 23 seconds. I mean you may need to rewind it.
    What does teh software say after 23 seconds? Does the screen go blank or recording stops etc??
    Are you abel to see the picture in camcorder after 23 seconds. Basically try to divide it and see that you are able to see the movie properly in camcorder.

    Try again and let me know. I used movie maker and premiere pro and both worked fine.
     

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