Do you have a collection of old VHS tapes that you want to convert into digital files? It is certainly possible to do that, but first you should ask yourself whether you really want to.
To Convert or Not to Convert
The fact of the matter is that the quality of videos on VHS tapes is not good by modern standards. If you haven’t watched yours in a long time you should first do so to determine whether or not you still want to convert them.
Watching the videos will also provide you with the opportunity to check that the VHS tapes are still in good working order, and aren’t too dusty or damaged in other ways.
If your tapes contain movies or TV shows, you may want to consider replacing them with DVD or Blu-ray equivalents that will have far superior quality. However if they contain family videos or other content that isn’t replaceable – you may still want to convert them.
What You Need
Assuming you decide that you do want to convert your VHS tapes, there are a few items that you’ll need to pull it off, such as a:
- Working VCR that you can use to read your tapes.
- USB capture device that you can use to connect your VCR to your computer.
- RCA or S-Video cables to make the connection depending on the ports on your USB device and VCR.
- Recording software to capture the video and save it as digital video files.
In some cases the USB capture device may include recording software of its own that you can use – or you could use any other recording software that you prefer.
How to Convert VHS Tapes
Armed with everything listed above, you should be all set and ready to convert your VHS tapes. While the exact steps can vary depending on the device and software you’re using, essentially you will need to:
- Connect the VCR to your PC using the USB capture device. If you’re using an S-Video cable you will need a separate connection for the audio.
- Launch your recording software and set the video input to the USB capture device. The audio input should be either the USB capture device or your sound card.
- Start to play the VHS tape on your VCR and begin recording on your software.
- Stop the VHS tape when it is done, and stop the recording on your software.
- Export the video and encode it in the format that you prefer.
If you want more detailed instructions on how to convert VHS to digital files, you can refer to the link.
By following the steps described above you should be able to convert your old VHS tapes to digital files and preserve them more effectively. The fact of the matter is that VHS tapes and the VCRs that play them are a dying breed, so the sooner that you do it – the better off you’ll be.
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