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In computer news this week 03/07/2012
Converting magnetic tape memories into computer format.
How many precious old family videos do you have on old magnetic tape media like VHS or cassette tapes- of your family at holidays and special moments in your life ? I had dozens and was looking for an economical way to convert them. I was concerned about the shelf life of those old video tapes. which I heard was only good for about 10 to 20 years.
A problem most of us will face is that the video on these tapes is unedited, so I was actually looking to get the video into my computer and then edit it.
Roxio Creator 2012 is a software suite that lets you do just about anything in terms of working with and converting music photo and video files.
Their new hardware product - Roxio Easy VHS to DVD – is a hardware device in the form of a USB port that plugs into your computer, and it’s attached to its own adapter which has both video and audio connectors on it..
All you have to do is connect your VHS player or Hi8 camera or tape cassette deck to your computer using their USB device, run their software, and you’ll be converting all your precious audio-video memories into your computer !
I converted about 30 VHS tapes and about 25 hi8 tapes.
Hard disk storage is a concern in all these video conversions, so be sure you have a lot of disk space. I found that a 2 hour vhs tape might convert over to up to 5 gigabytes of disk space, and Hi8 tapes might use up to 20 gigs. After you edit the movies and burn them to dvd they’re smaller, but still we’re talking gigabyte file sizes here.
Once I converted all my old video tapes into my computer using Roxio, I then edited them using Windows Movie Maker and then burnt them to dvds, using Roxio.
I then attacked my next project, which was converting an entire box of Cassette tapes I have a variety of music on. About 50 of these were from the Backwater Blues show I produced here on KPBX back in the 80’s.
I just hooked my tape deck to my computer – set to auto-reverse at the end of a side – and started the tapes playing and started Roxio recording them all. I found each hour show converted over to about 80 Megabytes, which means I was then able to burn about 8 shows to a cd.
The next thing I plan on converting is some old 45 and LP records albums of mine, and I’ll let you know how that goes.
Roxio has a simple solution for everyone looking to convert their old magnetic and vinyl media. They also have a youtube video showing you how to use it, in addition to excellent online and phone tech support.
So don’t let your audio-video memories crumble into dust – you can now convert them to digital easily.
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This is Frank Delaney
(C) 2012 MTA Micro Technology Associates