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VHS to ???
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Chad Johnson
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January 18, 2010 - 9:51 am
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Heh. My VCR is dying. That's right, my 20 year old RCA VCR.

Rather than replace it (for a handful of tapes, really) I'm trying to move from the VHS format to....something. I could do DVD, but digital video is just as good for me. I have a Media Center hooked to the TV already so watching the videos would be easy-ish.

Any thoughts/suggestions/horror stories? I thought of just plugging the VCR into my Media Center and hitting record, but that means disconnecting the antenna for the duration. (and then my wife misses American Idol...).

sigh.

Maybe an old Tivo box? LoL

Thanks!
--zig

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Jim Hillier
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January 18, 2010 - 4:00 pm
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Hey Zig - Sorry mate but I'm a tad dense this morning...are we talking; something to replace the VCR for recording purposes? Free to air or pay TV or both??? Are free to air and pay TV completely separate in the U.S.A.?

Another dumb question but doesn't the media center thingee have recording capabilities? I have no personal experience with them at all but I just always just assumed they would?

My free to air and pay TV are separate here, I could upgrade my pay TV service to include free to air but that would cost extra per month....of course!!

This is my setup: I have a Panasonic 42" plasma TV with analog tuner (got one of the very first available and paid an arm and a leg for it...LOL). My pay TV box is connected to a DVD recorder with built-in 250gig hard drive. I also have a high def set top box (for free to air) connected to the DVD recorder. Now, the high def set top box includes a USB input which is connected to a spare 320gig external hard drive (also for recording purposes). The antenna goes to the set top box and out connections from set top box to TV and DVD recorder are via AV jacks. That setup allows me to watch pay TV while recording free to air and vice versa plus record from both simultaneously, without having to change any leads at all.

Sorry for my denseness (or is that density? LOL)
JIM

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David Hartsock
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January 18, 2010 - 9:02 pm
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What is this V C R you speak of? Doesn't ring a bell!

What about something like [url=http://www.meritline.com/mygica-igrabber-usb-2point0-video-capture-for-mac---p-38254.aspx:3oxa5q0o]this?[/url:3oxa5q0o]. Meritline is a good company to deal with. It's pretty basic and if you only have a few it would probably work for you. I'm not sure of the output format, but once you get it on the computer you can convert to another format for long term storage.

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Chad Johnson
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January 19, 2010 - 1:53 pm
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Dave that looks awesome! The only thing I had found had been a $150 USB VCR. That's right. USB VCR. Will wonders never cease.

And Jim, yes, Media Center does my recording using the antenna as the input. However, I've kept my VCR to watch the 2 dozen or so VHS tapes I have in the bottom of my tape cabinet. Basically I want to convert VHS to...well...anything else (Beta? LoL). I do not have pay TV (unless you count Netflix...).

Clear as mud now? LoL.

Thanks guys. I'll probably order the Meritline product next week (after I get paid again).

--zig

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David Hartsock
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January 20, 2010 - 12:07 am
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Great! Now we'll work on converting your DVD collection and get you running MyMovies on media center!

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Chad Johnson
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January 20, 2010 - 3:25 pm
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Great! Now we'll work on converting your DVD collection and get you running MyMovies on media center![/quote:4ehsczmv]

I tried MyMovies on my wife's Vista laptop. It was...terrible actually. Constant phone home requests, constant popups and demands, and at one point it refused to shut down when I shut down the computer and corrupted its own database.

Maybe the next version (or maybe my trial was a fluke??)...

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David Hartsock
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January 20, 2010 - 9:54 pm
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I'm guessing the requests were for database info. It pulls cover shots and detailed movie info into the database.

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Chad Johnson
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January 21, 2010 - 10:31 am
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I thought so too, but even after getting cover info, why did it need to keep phoning home? I loaded three movies as a test and the constant requests for Internet data were too much for me. It's not like the covers will change over the course of a day or two, right?

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Mindblower
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January 21, 2010 - 12:09 pm
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If you have lots of vintage stuff on VHS format, I have two solutions for you - the main concern is in cost.

If you have a DVD recorder, you should be able to play your VHS and directly record to that device.

If you have a Win TV card in your computer (and processor is not too slow), believe Nero (free version) can convert the image directly to digital media (using either the coax or 3 pair RCA plugs between card and VHS player). This is the route I use, Mindblower!

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