How To Copy Home Video's To Computer 2 Burn On Dvd


I want to be able to copy my old home movies, from my camcorder, onto my computer. What programs best capture the video onto the computer, so it can be copies onto DVD? What connection do I need-- because I am not sure how to connect the actual camcorder to computer.

If anyone has any suggestions for software, connection, etc… Please let me know. It would be greatly appreciated.



There are different programs that you can use and different ways to get from vhs to dvd. You can get a stand alone dvd recorder or you can import to your computer, then edit and do more things with. I’ve done both. Importing to the computer can be frustrating but with alot of patience, the outcome is very gratifying.


What programs best capture the video onto the computer, so it can be copies onto DVD?

This question is difficult to answer, there are many proggies out and everybody prefers an other, so you probably will get many different answers. However, one of the most popular and best around is Pinnacle Studio. Nowadays you are also able to capture and edit videos from your camcorder with “normal” burning suites, such as Nero 6 and Roxio Easy CD/DVD Creator 7.5. The question should be: What is the best program for me? And this primary depends on what you want to with you video when it is saved on the hard disc.

[li]If you just want to convert the video to DVD format without any editing steps then won’t need a special video editing software.
[/li][li]If you want edit your videos/add menues and also create audio/data cd’s with the same software suite, then is Easy CD/DVD Creator a good choice
[/li][li]If you don’t have a video card and want a special video editing software, then it’s probably better to buy Pinnacle Studio 9 which comes with the video card.

What connection do I need-- because I am not sure how to connect the actual camcorder to computer.

This depends on the type of camcorder you have. A digital-DV camcorder is usually connected via Firewire. For older Hi8 camcorders you will need a videocard with analog input.

Hope this helps


Thanks you so much. Where would I get this video card with analog input? Typical computer hardware store? Thanks.


If you want decent quality, I would suggest buying an external capture device (firewire), such as ADS PYRO AV/LINK, Canopus AV/LINK, or Plextor. Some people will tell you to use Hauppage cards, or other tv tuner cards (these are cards that fit in a pci slot in your pc. I like the external devices myself, as they are easy to move from PC to PC. My ADS Pyro came with all the necessary software to do everything I want to do. You can get one for as low as $160.00 (including Adobe Premiere 6.0). Before you make a decision, check out , and Between those two sites, there is more information than you will ever need.

@ harley2ride

Thank you so much for your post. I appreciate it.


Perhaps I’m oversimplifying, but I have a very old Sony Handycam vintage 1993. Haven’t used it in over 7 years but have several tapes. I just transferred those tapes to DVDs by connecting the camcorder to my standalone DVD recorder via plain old a/v cables. I was pleased with the results and it was an inexpensive option.

Yes, that will work fine, unless you want to add captions, titles, edit, trim, special effects.


If you don’t mind spending a few bucks then you can do what I do. I place my older VHS tapes (some 20 years old) in a VHS player that has an S-Video out connector. I then connect the S-Video and analog audio outputs to the S-Video and audio input on my Canopus ADVC-110, which is an Analog to Digital Converter. I then use a 6 pin to 6 pin firewire cable to an empty firewire input on the back of my computer (if your computer does not have a firewire input, you can purchase a pci firewire card for under $20.00). I use the 6 Pin to 6 Pin cable because when you use it, you do not need a power supply for the Canopus ADVC-110. The 6 pin firewire cable gets it’s power directly from your system to operate it’s firewire port.

When you connect the firewire from the Canopus to the firewire port on your computer you (if using Windows xP) will get a dialogue box asking which software you would like to use to capture with. I have found that the easiest one to use is Windows Movie Maker 2.1. If it isn’t already on your computer (it was on mine by default) you can download it here: (it is free):

To take a look at the Canopus ADVC-110 check it out here:

as you will probably note, if you buy direct from Canopus they want and arm and a leg for it. I found mine at:

For: $269.99 instead of the $319.00 that Canopus sells it for.

Once you have captured the video as an .AVI file you can then use any software you like to edit and then burn the video to a DVD.

If you have any specific questions you can e-mail me at


The canopus is a nice card, but for over $100.00 less, you can get the ads pyro av/link which is very close to being as good as the canopus card at almost 1/2 the price. Both solutions received great reviews from VIDEOGUYS.COM.


I would suggest that you use the Pinnacle brand of cards as these give the best capture O/P in my opinion. Then you could use any software of your choice to capture the video(again my favorite is Showshifter as this usually gives good o/p but is expensive, there are several free packages available which pretty much do a decent job at no cost). Then capture to Divx, if possible at a resolution of your choice(If the final o/p is going to be DVD, then the min. res to be selected is 480 X480, ideal being 720 X 576). Then use a Dvd Authoring package to produce the O/p files for the DVD and burn using the burning software of your choice.

Hope this helps.