Back in the day VHS tapes were the primary means of storing home videos and movies but with the introduction of DVDs and camcorders that record to DVDs or a hard drive, VHS tapes, VCRs and video cameras have become all but obsolete. However people often find themselves with VHS cassettes that hold precious memories such as a wedding, baby’s first birthday, or something similar that cannot be thrown away, or the cassette may be going bad and there is a danger that the recorded data might be lost forever; in cases like this it becomes necessary to convert VHS tapes to DVDs. You may think it is a project you will have to pay to have done but the process is actually pretty simple if you have the required tools.
THINGS YOU WILL NEED
• Blank DVD R
• VHS Tape
• DVD Burner
The steps necessary for converting your VHS tapes will vary depending on the method you use for the conversion; here are the three main options available and the steps required for each.
1. The easiest method if it is available would be to use a combination DVD/VHS converter; these devices allow you to transfer data directly from VHS to DVD using a single device by simply following the instructions provided by your particular device. The only downside to using one of these converters is that you cannot add menus and titles as you would when burning a DVD in a computer.
2. Another method available is to convert from a VCR to a computer; to do this an analog-to-digital converter box would be required to connect both devices. You would simply place the VHS tape into the VCR, plug the VCR into the converter box and then connect the converter box to a computer; you will need a program such as WinDVD Creator to record the VHS in a format your computer can read and then you will need a DVD burner and the appropriate software to burn the data to a DVD.
3. The third alternative is to use a video camera for the conversion; you can either connect the video camera to your VCR and then to your computer following the steps above, or you can get a video capture card for your computer and use composite video cables to connect the video camera directly to your computer. Some video cameras will have an analog-to-digital converter built in while others will require you to use a converter box. Whatever you need to do, once the camera is connected to your computer this is done you can copy your VHS cassettes to your computer and then burn it to a DVD.
DO’S AND DON’TS
• Never place a dirty VHS cassette into any of the mentioned devices as it will dirty the head of your converting devices and ruin the end product.
• If your VHS tapes are copy protected or are very dirty, or if you don’t have the required equipment to do the conversion, it might be best to just pay a conversion service to do it for you.