Old Media in the Digital Age

Posted in Home Video Tips on Jun 18, 2019

For many years, home video used the cassette tapes format of VHS, or Video Home System. For the first time since home television, people could now record and save programming utilizing a VCR (Video Cassette Recorder). Beyond that, with a proper camera, people could record for themselves, capturing big life events or normal happenings around the home. As a result, many families now have libraries of old tapes filled with treasure memories, though exhibition is likely another problem.


Unless the equipment has been up kept or updated, viewing of the tapes will be problematic. VCRs can still be hooked up to contemporary TVs, but even with the right equipment, the standard definition picture will need to be stretched for HD displays. When playing these tapes, noticeable will be a general lack of picture quality but also lines and blips occurring in the media. These are signs of degradation in the tapes. Even film has a half-life, and the saved moments will not be around forever unless otherwise preserved.

Old VHS tapes are of the analog format. To insure preservation for years to come, the footage should be digitized. This is accomplished through an Analog Video to Digital Video converter. The AVDV box is wired to a VCR and a home computer. When the tape plays on the VCR, the AVDV box transforms the information so it can be read on the computer. The computer will run a recording application, allowing capture and saving of the video to take place.


We have a reached a time where more and more VHS tapes will degrade past a point of saving. If you have a stack of tapes burning a hole in your attic, bring them into JP Video and we can help to digitize your family memories. Digital version of family movies make for great birthday gifts, or mass gifts for loved ones during the holidays.