How to Convert VHS to DVD Format
Special note: this article has been broken into two parts, as the question and answer is somewhat technical.
I've gone to great lengths to make this as easy as possible and have provided step-by-step instructions on converting VHS to DVD, as we receive this question a lot from our readers.
This first article describes how to do VHS to DVD conversion / transfer using USB video capture hardware.
The second article explains how to make any video file (including any VHS videos you transfer to your PC) play in a DVD player: either connected to your TV, or playable in your PC.
Infopackets Reader Neil from New Zealand writes:
" Dear Dennis,
Regarding your current 35% off sale on Ashampoo Movie Shrink and Burn 3 (MSAB): Can this software capture old VHS cassettes for transfer to DVD? "
Thanks for your question. The short answer is Yes and No.
Yes: you can use Movie Shrink and Burn to do what you're asking, but No: you first need video capture hardware in order to physically transfer the VHS tape onto the computer.
Such an item is pictured below (the Diamond VC500, available at Amazon.com for only $24.99 USD after rebate as of March 10, 2011).
Once the VHS videos have been transferred to your PC, you can use Movie Shrink and Burn to set up the files so they are DVD compatible, allowing you to play the recordings inside a DVD player.
How to Play Any Video file in a DVD Player
Note that simply burning (copying) a video file to a DVD recordable disc won't be playable in a DVD player (which plays on the television).
That's because you need to set up the video files into a specific DVD format, so that the DVD player knows how to play the movie. That's why we recommend you use Movie Shrink and Burn because it's _really_ easy to use.
Once Movie Shrink and Burn converts the video file into the proper DVD format, you can play the DVD disc inside a DVD player, or even on your PC.
How does Movie Shrink and Burn Work?
Movie Shrink and Burn is software which converts video files stored on your computer into other formats. Using Movie Shrink and Burn, you can:
a) Make your own DVD compilations using 1 or more video files that you downloaded or recorded yourself (such as VHS or camcorder), and store them onto DVD in DVD format, playable in a DVD player
b) Store multiple video files (movies) on 1 DVD, and even have the videos span across multiple DVDs (if the files are too big)
c) Convert huge video files into smaller video files (with little or no loss in quality)
How to Convert VHS to DVD Format (Using Hardware + Software)
To make a VHS to DVD recording, you would first need to input the VHS videos into the computer, which requires video capture hardware.
I did some research and the Diamond vc500 was one of the highest ranked USB video capture devices on the market via Amazon.com (use link below to view / purchase):
All hardware (cables) and software to record / transfer your video are included in the Diamond vc500 bundle.
DVD Mastering: Required for DVD Player Playback
Once you make the video recording using the Diamond vc500 (for example), you will need DVD mastering software so that you can play the videos in a DVD player. This is where Movie Shrink and Burn comes in, and I'll describe that in another, separate article (because it can be applied to any video file, and not just one that you've recorded).
Jump to article #2: