We have more than 30 years of experience with our video tape transfer service. We know just how precious your memories are. With this in mind, we take the utmost care. We can handle VHS, VHSC, S-VHS, Betamax, Betacam, Video 8, Hi8, Digital 8 and Mini DV and more. Each tape is checked for damage and cleaned. Then we calculate the total amount of footage recorded on the tape before we convert tapes to DVD. Thereby, we use professional equipment to maximise the input video signal, with a top of the line video compression. During our video tape transfer service, we continuously check for quality issues and do all we can to boost the final quality of the footage. We do everything to ensure the highest quality transfer, by testing and playing your tapes in various transfer systems. We use top of the line video correctors and enhancements until we find the best results. There are vast differences and idiosyncrasies between each make of tape. Therefore, we only use the best equipment for the specific job. It is not always possible to improve the quality of every tape, but we guarantee to maintain your tape’s highest possible quality with our video tape transfer service.
VHS Tapes to DVD
Transferring VHS tapes to DVD is an excellent way to preserve your memories for the future. The Video Home System (VHS) was a popular analogue video recording device. It used tape that was originally developed by Victor Company of Japan (JVC) in the 1970s. From then on, this method was used to record video for commercial and domestic use. Most homes had a VHS player to play films and home movies. In 1997, the DVD was introduced, and by 2008 it was the preferred format for watching and recording movies. The DVD is better quality and can hold larger file types. Furthermore, it has its own advancements thanks to HD and Blu-ray.
Many households may still have home videos recorded on VHS tapes, and we can transfer these VHS tapes to DVD for you. VHS Tapes degrade each time they are played. Therefore, it is advisable to transfer VHS tapes to DVD so that your memories can last well into the future. You always get your original item back so that you can keep the original VHS tape format as well as the updated one. We can also repair your tape if required.
SVHS Tape to DVD
SVHS tape or, Super-VHS tape, is an advanced version of VHS Tape. It has more picture detail for a better resolution. SVHS tape can record and output up to 400-420 lines of resolution. Standard VHS tape, on the other hand, offers only 240-250 lines of resolution. SVHS tapes can only be played on standard VHS VCR players that have a feature known as Quasi-SVHS Playback.
Should you have any SVHS tapes, then we will check your tape and transfer your recording to DVD or digital conversion. We can also repair your tape if required.
Camcorder Tapes to DVD
(various format to DVD or digital conversion)
Camcorder Tapes to DVD (VHS-C)
VHS-C tape is the compacted version of the VHS tape format and was introduced in 1982 to be used primarily for portable camcorders. The format is based on the same video tape as is used in VHS and could be played back in a standard VHS VCR with an adapter that the VHS-C fitted into. Again, now that we have moved into a digital age for recording video on memory cards rather than tapes, the VHS-C has become virtually obsolete.
If you have home movies recorded onto VHS-C tape we will transfer your camcorder tapes to DVD or digital conversion so that you can relive your family memories again. Whether it is a wedding video, school play, or family outing, we will take the tape and carefully move it to a DVD or digital conversion format. We can repair the tape as needed.
Three different types of 8mm tapes were released that all look identical to each other. The first one was the 8mm tape or video8, followed by the Hi8, and finally the Digital8. Many manufacturers had the sense to make their products backwards compatible with older versions of the tapes. So if you had several original 8mm tapes, you’d be able to play them on your Hi8 or Digital8 camera. However, you wouldn’t be able to play your Hi8 or Digital8 tapes on your old everyday 8mm camcorder. We can transfer your 8mm film to DVD. By cleaning and converting your old video 8 tapes, we provide a restored, easy to view digital video on DVD that you can watch for years to come.
To offset the introduction of the Super-VHS tape format, Sony introduced Video Hi8 tape. Like S-VHS, the Hi8 tape was used to increase the recorded bandwidth of the luminance signal to 400 lines. Hi8 cassettes were widespread throughout the 90s because of their compact size and quality. Especially because they could fit into a camcorder for home video recording. Unfortunately, Hi8 players are not in the mainstream anymore. Consequently, it is increasingly difficult to watch movies in this format. With tape degrading over time, the best way to preserve the memories they hold is to convert Hi8 to DVD or digital.
In 1999 Sony developed the Digital8, or D8, which is a consumer digital video tape design. It is a combination of the older Hi8 tape with the DV codec. The Digital8 equipment uses the same video cassettes as analogue Hi8 equipment. However, they differ regarding the fact that the audio/video signal for Digital8 is encoded digitally, using the industry standard DV codec.
As the Digital8 format uses the DV codec, this means they have identical audio and video specifications. As a result, the quality of Digital8 to DVD transfers is excellent.
MiniDV is a digital video tape format which uses the same compression as DV. It was very popular for recording home movies. Most small camcorders sold after 2000 used the MiniDV digital video tape format. MiniDV tapes were 65 x 48 x 12 mm and the record time was 60 minutes (13gb standard play) or 90 minutes (extended/long play). Also, 80/120 minute tapes were available.
Again, the degrading quality of film means there is no better time to transfer your MiniDV tapes to DVD. Varying temperatures and dust all play a factor in the degrading your video’s quality. Therefore, it is best to save your memories and transfer them to Digital Conversion or DVD.
HDV is a format for recording of high-definition video on DV cassette tape. It was initially developed by JVC and supported by Sony, Canon, and Sharp. HDV was an affordable high-definition format for digital camcorders. It quickly caught on with many amateur and professional videographers. Due to its low cost, portability, and image quality acceptable for many professional productions. HDV was a step up from mini DV. It used a 16:9 widescreen format, with a resolution of 1280 x 720 pixels. This is a substantial improvement over Mini DV, which recorded video in a 4:3 format, with a maximum resolution of 500 horizontal lines. With these older formats becoming increasingly obsolete, now is the time to convert your videos into a system that you can watch comfortably.
The Betamax Formats
Betamax Tape is a video cassette recording technology that uses magnetic tape 1/2 inch (1.27 cm) in width. It was originally developed by Sony in Japan. The Betamax cassette was physically smaller than a VHS cassette and had less recording time than VHS cassettes. The format is now virtually obsolete. However, the television industry still uses an updated version called Betacam.
Greater wear occurs on a Betamax tape compared with VHS which shortens the life of the cassette. It is, therefore, important to transfer the Betamax tapes to a more stable format such as DVD or Digital Conversion. As with all tapes, we will carefully convert and transfer the old format so that you can continue to watch the footage in the future.
As Sony was being humiliated in the VHS vs Betamax war, a similar battle was being fought in the professional video arena with very different results. Betacam, launched in 1982, was a great success in the professional market for its quality and reliability. The original Betacam cassettes were basically the same as Betamax. The difference was that Betacam used component video rather than composite, and recorded at a much higher tape speed. Betamax and Betacam tapes were interchangeable (unlike the later Betacam SP tapes). The Betacam tapes came in two sizes: S (small) and L (large) and the Betacam cameras used the S size. Betacam tape decks could use either size. Betacam tapes were 1/2-inch with 300 lines of horizontal resolution. With tape degrading over time, the best way to preserve the memories they hold is to convert the videos to digital or DVD.
The successor to Sony’s Betacam is the Betacam SP which was launched in 1986. It went on to become the most successful general-purpose professional video format of the 20th Century. The “SP” stands for “Superior Performance”, which was achieved by using a metal-formulated tape instead of oxide. Horizontal resolution was increased to around 360 lines. Tape sizes were the same as Betacam. As with all tapes, we will carefully convert and transfer the old format so that you can continue to watch the footage in the future.
Sony introduced the Digital Betacam in 1993. It was also called Digibeta or D-Beta and was a replacement for the analogue Betacam SP format. Digital Betacam was superior in performance to DVCam and DVCPro. Cassette sizes are the same as other Beta versions: S (small) tapes record up to 40 minutes, L (large) tapes record up to 124 minutes. Cassettes are light blue. Digital Betacam records component video with 10-bit YUV 4:2:2 compression. PAL resolution is 720×576, NTSC resolution is 720×480. The bitrate is 90 Mbit/s. There are five audio channels — Four main channels (uncompressed 48KHz PCM) and one cue track. Some Digital Betacam equipment is backwards-compatible with Betacam and Betacam SP. As with all tapes, we will carefully convert and transfer the old format so that you can continue to watch the footage in the future.
Transfer old vintage video tapes to DVD
The U-Matic tape was first released to the general public in 1971. It was one of the first video formats to contain the videotape inside a cassette compared to the open reel style of the other systems. U-Matic tapes are also commonly called 3/4 tapes due to their width. Unlike most other tape formats, the supply and take-up reels in the cassette turn in opposite directions during playback, fast-forward, and rewind as one reel would run clockwise while the other would run anti-clockwise.
The U-Matic tape is another system that is no longer used for everyday recording. It had to give way to the digital age. Luckily, we can take your old U-Matic tapes and transfer them to DVD so that you can enjoy them again. Our trained staff transfer all formats in-house to ensure the highest of standards.
Helical Scan was a method of recording information onto magnetic tape. It was used to record TV programs in the 1960s, and by several storage sellers in high-end tape backup products. The helical scan is the same technology used in digital audio tapes and began in the VCR arena. It uses a spinning read/write head and diagonal tracks. Unfortunately, the recording and playback heads touch the tape. Furthermore, an IBM scientist concluded in the mid-1990s that helical-scan cartridges could start to deteriorate after being used from 50 to 250 times. If you are worried about the longevity of any of your film formats, then bring them to Happy Ireland so that we can transfer them to DVD. We will also restore and repair the film where possible while cutting out any blank scenes. Contact us today.