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HeXiLeD
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 17, 2013 10:18 pm    Post subject: Playing video from VCR (hardware and software questions) Reply with quote

I have a few old VHS tapes that contain some videos that i would like to play and convert to a digital format but i nver done things before and i am not sure how to start.
As far as i know to simply play the video i can get a scart to dvi or vga cable/adaptor but this means to plug the VCR directly to the monitor just to watch the video and while this is fine to start i need to convert the videos.

I may need some hadware such as en encoder card but i am not sure. Can anyone confirm this?
As for my current video card i have an VGA compatible controller: NVIDIA Corporation G84 [GeForce 8600 GT] (rev a1) with 2 DVI outputs and one svideo and i am wondering if i can plug the VCR to the svideo and then use mplayer or vlc to watch the videos.

Has anyone done this ? What is the recommendation ?
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jasn
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 17, 2013 11:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's a good starting guide. In order to get the VCR output into your computer you just need a VHS to USB capture dongle, that's will plug into your system as a V4L2 device, like this Roxio branded EM28xx device. This superuser posted question and answer demonstrates that as is the case with the Roxio device, if you check with the V4L-DVB wiki guide here, there should be plenty of these VHS-USB dongle devices supported as a capture devices under Linux. Then it's just a matter of choosing software to grab and encode the signal to a file.

Good Luck..
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NeddySeagoon
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 17, 2013 11:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

HeXiLeD,

VHS video quality is fairly poor - well below the old analogue broadcast TV standrds.

Your VHS player will have several outputs,

RF - the is worst of all
Composite, this is the PAL encoded video signal before its passed to the modulator to generate the RF signal. Its slightly better.
S-Video. This is the Luma and Y-R and Y-B on separate wires. and is pretty much as good as it gets.

These are all analogue interfaces. You may find a suitable video capture card going for the price of a beer as nobody uses them any more.
Brooktree based cards are well supported by the kernel.

The SCART output provides component video, (RGB) but the signal on the tape is like S-Video, so thats a good as it gets.
I don't know of any analogue capture cards that accept RGB.
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Tony0945
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2013 12:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Composite, this is the PAL encoded video signal before its passed to the modulator to generate the RF signal.
Code:


Just to amplify your answer, in USA-marketed VCR's the video Signal is NTSC. US TV's that accept composite inputs will play. The quality depends on the recorded quality level, SP, LP, ELP and the quality of the tape.
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