Copy VHS Tapes to DVD

Discussion in 'DVD Video' started by EFK, Jan 1, 2004.

  1. EFK

    EFK Guest

    I recently purchased a DVD recorder to hookup to my VCR to save my
    collection of old tapes. These are original copy protected tapes, which are
    now beginning to deteriorate, some have broken already.

    In trying to save them to DVD, I get a notice from the Panasonic DMR E50
    that this function cannot be done (or some such error). I guess it is
    picking up the copy protection. Is there a way to save these tapes to DVD
    from my VCR? Please point me to any web page explaining what needs to be

    EFK, Jan 1, 2004
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  2. These original copy protected tapes, they are going to be legally obtained
    VHS movies, correct?

    They will have a MACROVISION protection on them. The DVD recorder is made
    to not allow any input with macrovision to be recorded, since it would be
    violating copyrights. It cannot tell if your legally purchased tape is
    yours, your friends, or your local rental store's.

    There are, to my knowledge, only really 2 ways to get around this. One is
    to use a macrovision remover external device. I believe these are illegal
    in Germany, and perhaps other countries, and I'm unsure of price, but I'd
    take a guess of around $100.

    The second, which is less desierable, is to use a really old VCR. Ones made
    before macrovision was invented can't tell the DVD recorder there is
    macrovision, and macrovision is made so that it won't cause problems on old
    VCRs (at the time, that would have meant to buy a new VCR just to watch your
    new video, or to watch a rental you only paid $4 for, and VCRs would have
    cost a lot more than they do now). The big problem here is these things are
    so old, they don't display the picture as well. And, if your tapes are
    already starting to go, this isn't going to help.

    If you have a fairly small library, it may be best to buy the DVDs rather
    than copy it from tape. Atleast when you do this, you get a widescreen
    picture (I surely hope you agree that widescreen is better), and surround
    sound (if you don't have a surround sound system, I advise you to get one,
    and not one with a built-in DVD player, those ones aren't as good as a real
    system -- I've seen them for $200 [real ones]). I dont personally care for
    extras, but some people like them....

    With a large library, which would cost a lot to convert to DVD, it's not a
    good place to be in.

    What I would do is either get the macrovision blocker, according to country
    laws, and if I can get one, use that to convert only the best tapes.
    Anything that is already bad is junk, so it is not worth it to waste a DVD±R
    disc on that. I would buy the DVD version of anything that I really like,
    though. With the ones that are already bad, I'd just put them on a list,
    and if I get around to buying them, I would, but unless the movie is really
    good, I'd buy it now. I dont know how much disposable cash you have, but
    any money you use to buy DVDs with better be completly disposable.

    I would also question how the tapes broke to begin. If it was simply
    because of old age and overuse, then that's one thing, but if it was
    children handling them (or dropping them), that's completly different, and
    its also different if children broke the tapes but are now old enough to
    handle DVDs properly....
    Anonymous Joe, Jan 2, 2004
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