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VHS sets sail into the West


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  • VHS sets sail into the West

    (You'll understand that quote if you're a Lord of the Rings fan)

    RIP, VHS - MSN Tech & Gadgets - News and Features

    For sure there will still be videocassette manufacture; it just won't be in the mainstream like before if there's no major distributor. I have noticed that the price of blank videocassettes has gone up a fair deal lately, and of course stores don't stock nearly as many as they did a few years ago. This appears to be at least partly why through most of the decade up to a year or so ago you could get 12-packs for cheap and stores had a lot in stock.

    So... do you use VHS much? Although obsolete, it's not dead by any means, and won't be for many years at least. And with DVDs mainstream for as long as they've been, second-hand VHS can be a good alternative for low-priority movies. At least around here, the local Goodwill stores have loads of movies for cheap. And of course, not everything has been re-released on DVD. Personally, I never owned that many movies on VHS to begin with, but I have several hundred tapes of recorded material.

    And personally, I reeeeealy like that warm analogue sound of Hi-Fi-VHS audio. The AC-3 (Dolby Digital) audio tracks on a lot of DVDs lack life somewhat: possibly they've lost some nuances from excessive compression in order to comply with the DVD format's bitrate limitations. ("DTS" format fortunately doesn't, and I get these whenever it's an option.)

    I still record a few things on tape, and have a few VCRs that get used pretty regularly. Specifically S-VHS: I "upgraded" quite some time ago. But I don't use them nearly as much since adding a video-in card in my computer. I store most recorded things I want to keep on DVD-Rs now. But the MPEG maker on the video-in only does 30fps de-interlaced. This isn't a problem most of the time for casual DVR'ing, but for fast motion such as sports it really does mush things up too much compared to 60 fields/s interlaced. The really important stuff still goes on tape for now. Plus, the average PC running windows is simply not designed for working with video in realtime. It can be done of course, but not nearly as well as a device whose hardware and software is explicitly designed from the ground up to process video.

    What do you think?

  • #2
    Re: VHS sets sail into the West

    I think DVDs are next. The next step is to put movies and such on digital media like Memory Sticks or USB Thumb Drives.


    • #3
      Re: VHS sets sail into the West

      Some items I own on VHS I know will NEVER be released on DVD for various reasons, so I still have my VCR and it's hooked up to my TV so I can pull out a tape every now and then when the urge strikes me.


      • #4
        Re: VHS sets sail into the West

        Of course I still use VHS.

        I tape tv shows when I'm not around to watch.

        Sure, this spring when I finally get that HDTV, dump Comcast and get Dish, and get a DVR in the package - then all I'll use the VHS machine for is as a source to transfer video from tape into my computer.


        I am Sambo, and I endorse this signature.


        • #5
          Re: VHS sets sail into the West

          Seems like just yesterday that you could put down a $200 deposit at Blockbuster to rent a portable VHS player to watch a movie in your own home. My credit card was never good enough. I had to bring a friend with better credit along so we could rent a movie for the weekend.

          Time flies and technology marches on. I have stacks and stacks of VHS that I haven't watched in years. Nearly everything is available in digital form somewhere.

          I hope that my old VHS is happy up there in tech heaven with the 8 track player and laser disk.
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          • #6
            Re: VHS sets sail into the West

            I still use VHS and most of the time watch what I tape. Sometimes I prefer to DVD+R some television shows.
            "You are watching FOX"


            • #7
              Re: VHS sets sail into the West

              I have not used a VCR for at least three years now. I gave away most of my old tapes. Time marches on!


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