VHS to DVD: Roxio Easy VHS to DVD or Elgato Video Capture?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by dugost, Nov 4, 2011.

  1. dugost macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2011
    #1
    Years ago I bought an ADS Tech Pyro A/V Link converter box to transfer my VHS to DVD via Firewire. It turned out to be a big waste of money. Commercial VHS usually captured fine but home movies didn't have a consistent or strong enough signal, resulting in a lot of dropped frames, segments and audio. I was told to try running it through a time-base corrector first (never did do that) but thought perhaps my G4 Mac at the time just couldn't handle the throughput. I'm on an 3.06 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo iMac now and it can't capture it any better.

    I've since transferred most of my VHS to DVD with a DVD set top recorder. The captures worked perfectly but I want to edit some of this video and don't want to go through the messy capture and conversion process from MPEG-2 to a format for iMovie or Final Cut Express.

    Has anyone here transferred VHS home movies to DVD/computer using either Roxio Easy VHS to DVD for Mac or Elgato Video Capture? I’m interested to know what real world experience people have had. Reviews online aren’t telling me a whole lot other than their ease of use. I want to know if the lower to average video quality of home movies transfers well through either of these devices. I don’t want to drop the bucks to find out they drop the frames.

    I also want to capture this to my Mac for editing, not strictly direct to DVD burning.

    Thanks.
     
  2. flynz4 macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2009
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #3
    I used the Elgato video capture to transfer all of my VHS and 8mm camcorder tapes to digital. It did the job just fine. Of course, the resolution on those old tapes are not great... but they transferred.

    I had one tape that lost sync for about 5 minutes.... but the others all worked ok. I probably transferred about 20 hours of home video to my Mac.

    I have no interest in physical media, so I never tried to write them to DVD. I certainly would not recommend DVD as a storage medium. Get them onto your Mac... and then make sure your Mac is getting double backed up, with one of the copies being backed up offsite.

    /Jim
     
  3. dugost thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2011
    #4
    Thanks. I may look into that this year as a new project then using Elgato. The DVD burns were mostly out of desperation to transfer them off VHS in case I couldn't ever get them on my Mac.
     
  4. Ccrew macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2011
    #5
    The Roxio Easy VHS to CD works ok, I just bought it to get a bunch of old camcorder video over to digital. It works under Lion if you go to their site to get the software update.

    Only thing I really don't like about it is you pretty much have to watch the video you're transferring, which makes it a longish process, although the software does allow you to set a time length so you can walk away. That came in handy when I was transferring old VHS tapes over and I knew how long they were. All in all I don't regret the purchase, but don't expect HD output either. Let's just say it works as designed.

    The video is editable, but the software included does not include a video editor.
     
  5. flynz4 macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2009
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #6
    The problem with tape is that it is wound onto a reel, with magnet material squeezed between other magnets. Over time, the signal will degrade until you cannot even get a sync signal.

    Of course, the problem with CD/DVD is even worse, as they seem to degrade and fail faster than tape.

    That is why I recommend to get your video off of tape/CD/DVD and onto your HDD... and then make sure you have a solid backup plan.

    /Jim
     
  6. dugost thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2011
    #7
    Thanks, Ccrew. I'll look into Easy VHS a little more. Need to weigh some options I guess.

    Jim, I'm worried that the signal may be the problem in that it's too weak from my recorded VHS. Like I said, commercial VHS captured fine but I ran into problems with my own recordings. Maybe one of these other units will do the trick though.

    As for backups, I have multiple DVD copies with dupes kept off-site. They're mostly "just in case copies" and used for quick reference should I need to find anything. But if I can get the video onto my Mac, the data will be duplicated on external drives that I rotate between here and off-site. Time Machine has certainly been a big help!

    Thanks for the info about optical media too. I'm in the middle of the process of duping all of my CD/DVD work files/etc. to drives as well.
     
  7. Flynnstone macrumors 65816

    Flynnstone

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    Feb 25, 2003
    Location:
    Cold beer land
  8. dugost thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2011
    #9
    Awesome. I'd love to know how it works for you. I may go the same route.
     
  9. Jamie0003 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2009
    Location:
    Norfolk, UK
    #10
    Me too, I had been using this rubbish Pinnacle DVD recorder thing for Windows, but it only works half the time and you can only burn directly to DVD which is very limiting.

    Elgato Video capture is available on the mac so obviously it's simpler and you get it in an Apple friendly format. It has also received updates for compatibility, which is a plus.
     
  10. omr macrumors member

    omr

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2012
    Location:
    Las Vegas, NV
    #11
    I'd be interested in user experience with the Elgato...
     

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