Video to DVD Service – Saving memories at Tapes2USB
Our video to DVD service continues to broaden here at Tapes2USB. Whilst the bulk of this is converting videotapes to USB these days, we’re still regularly asked to convert to DVD. Some clients prefer this familiar format and the additional features such as adding menus and bespoke artwork to the DVD.
Many were predicting the demise of DVD which was tipped to be overtaken by BluRay or Cloud storage. But good old DVD has managed to keep a firm hold on its position as the playback medium of choice for many – regardless of whether that’s via a DVD player, Games Console or a computer. One of the main reasons it’s held on is that the Standard Definition offered by DVD is, “good enough”. Nearly all older videotape formats and home movies are recorded in Standard Definition, so there is little advantage in converting to a high definition format (such as BluRay).
How much Video can you get on a DVD?
The video files contained on a DVD are compressed using a system or file format called MPEG2. This compression system is variable, but the further your compress the video the lower the picture quality will be. So, you can actually get many hours of video on one DVD but at the expense of quality.
There’s also a variety of different types of recordable DVD media (the blank disks). Some are dual-layered giving you almost twice the capacity, others are re-writable, but there’s one format that is pretty much universally playable on any device. At Tapes2USB we output our customers’ videos using the DVD-R format – which is the only format which complies with the original DVD specification.
It is very rare that a DVD player is unable to playback DVD-R disks from Tapes2USB, but if that does occur we can output using DVD+R (the next most compatible format).
However, we do not recommend the dual-layer formats (‘+’ or ‘-‘). Whilst these are great for converting especially long videos they’re really not as compatible. What we prefer to do is split recordings over a number of DVDs to maintain quality.
Whilst it does depend on the quality of the original recordings on the tape, we usually limit the duration of the video to around 2-hours per DVD. If the quality of the original is suitable this can go up to 2-hours 30-minutes.
Video to DVD service – it’s all about archiving futures
Whilst DVD is still the most appropriate and convenient format to have your family archives copied over to, we also keep our eye on where things are moving to in the future. Online or Cloud storage is expanding fast and it can be a very smart way to share your memories with family and friends through social media platforms or through privately shared online storage solutions. To meet this demand Tapes2USB offer a conversion service to MP4 on a USB stick. These sticks can be played using most modern Smart TV sets – and the MP4 file can be easily shared using platforms such as YouTube (for more information on Video to MP4 see our more detailed article here).
Whilst DVD and USB sticks are a great playback format, some customers want to edit their films further once converted so we offer delivery in a wide range of higher quality editable digital formats which are ideal for either PC or Mac editing programs (please contact us for pricing details).
Growing demand for video on DVD
Besides VHS, the other common formats that we convert to DVD are (from top to bottom) VHS-C, DV (or DVCAM), 8mm (or Video 8, Hi8 or Digital8), Camcorder Cards (or Hard Drives) and Cine Film (Standard or Super8)
VHS tapes were first released in the late 70s and remained as the main consumer videotape format for over 20-years until DVD was introduced in the late 90s. At their peak there were more than 200 million VHS players being sold each year and many, many millions more VHS tapes were manufactured and used for off-air recording as well as for recording home movies. And despite many variations of the format being introduced (Super-VHS / SVHS-ET / VHS-C / W-VHS / Digital-S / D9), the last standalone VHS player was sold by JVC in 2008.
Whilst videotape is now considered to be obsolete, there have been many more tape formats, both analogue and digital, that have been used to record family films and home recordings. The more popular of these include Video 8, Hi8, DVC, MiniDV, MicroMV, Digital 8 and HDV. The result is billions of hours of home movies and family films that are gradually becoming harder for people to see as the players become faulty or discarded. Having a video to DVD conversion is therefore a really great way to bring those memories back to life.
We normally turnaround video to DVD conversions within 10-days – but often much quicker. This does depend on the volume of work as all video to DVD conversions have to be carried out in real time. Our studios are based in Loughton, Essex – but we offer a mail order service to customers further afield.
Please contact us for details on pricing and discounts for bulk video to DVD conversions – call 020 3602 3356 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Kevin Cook – Tapes2USB (Part of Video Artisan)