Recording Audio from VHS tape

vbimport

#1

Hi there! Not only am I a newbie, I am also extremely low-tech and in need of some guidance. I would like to record the audio from a VHS workout tape to a CD-R, via my loaner laptop (Windows 7), so I can play it in a CD player. Would the Blue EasyCap USB 2.0 device work for this ($10)? If not, what equipment could I use? Do I need a “driver?” Step by step would be much appreciated!


#2

I’m not familiar with this specific device (BlueCap DC 90 pictured here). It’s a “hydra” connector that appears to allow all the proper inputs from the VHS deck into your PC.

It will probably have “capture” software with it - it should, at least - and then you’ll probably use that software to (1) start a Record Session on your computer, then (2) press the PLAY button on your VHS deck, and (3) you should see/hear the video on your computer’s screen and hear it thru the computer’s speakers.

When the video reaches the end, you’ll probably press the VHS’ STOP button, then on your computer, you’ll click on the STOP RECORDING session.

Your computer will then have a new video-file (probably some .MPEG2 or .MPG2 file) and there are free video-editors so you can ‘chop off’ the beginning and ending segments, as you desire. (When you get to that point, you can let us know more and we can provide more specific software-titles you can use.)

If the package doesn’t come with Recording Software, ugh… there are generic ones available, but these devices that offer their own recording software will include all the necessary drivers you’d need. If the device doesn’t have its own software, then it may be cheap in dollars but expensive in learning-curves and detective work to figure out what works and how.

(The above link says this $30 package comes with ULead Video Capture software - a stripped down version - which usually provides the basics of what you’d need. If your $10 package mentions “ULead”, definitely go for the lower price!)


#3

One other note… this EasyCap DC 90 shows 4 connectors - the 3 color connectors will correspond to the back of the VHS deck’s color-connectors, too. The 4th plug is a round, black connector with several small pins - this is the S-VIDEO plug and if you use that one (with a separate S-Video Cable), your video quality will be somewhat better.

Otherwise you can use a standard 3-color Video-Cable set (red white yellow) and it will capture video and stereo-sound. Your TV set may have this kind of cable already connected to that VHS deck, so you can pull those connectors from the TV and plug it into this blue Easy Cap.


#4

I will start with this if at all possible check with whoever loaned you the laptop to see if they have a recent backup of the OS .
I personally had a some of the giveaway Ulead software cause a system crash .
It was with a DVD drive but I’m not a fan of ulead ever since.

I also tried a Roxio device similar to the one you want to use that I never got the driver it had to work.

On the other hand many people have used these & they do fine . The main thing is are the drivers it has really compatable with Windows 7.

If you get an A/V file on your laptop & it plays OK on the laptop with a Player like VLC for example . Then I think the software Audacity can extract the audio & convert it to .wav which is what you want for a Audio CD .
In most cases you need to add the free plugin for Audacity " FFMpeg for Audacity ".
It’s fairly easy to add this the link is in Audacity /Preferences/Libraries.
I burn to CD with ImgBurn using a .cue file it creates .
If you have a version of Nero it might be easier for you.
I hope that helps & doesn’t scare you away fron the project.


#5

Wouldn’t it be easier and cheaper to buy a RCA to 1/8" cable and use Audacity or any of the free audio capture progs to record to WAV through the microphone input? I notice that youtube is populated with videos by people attempting to ofer workarounds for a buggy driver to get the audio to work with that easycap device


#6

Thanks! This is the one I was looking to order: [URL=“http://www.ebay.com/itm/Blue-EasyCap-Usb-2-0-Video-Audio-Capture-Adapter-Card-Device-NEW-Support-Win-7-/261079123913”]
It comes with the ULead software program. How do I only capture the audio, leave off the yellow? Is there an audio only option in the program? My VCR does not have an S-Video port. I only want the instructional soundtrack anyway.


#7

If that is the case you can do just the Audio . There is a cable you will need for this .
It will go strait from the red/white RCA out jacks of the VCR to the mic input jack of your laptop . I think you will find the quality of that acceptable .

If you were after better quality like it was music then inputting into a sound card would be better.

In this link I posted images that show the differenct between Line-in & Mic-in :

This is what Amazon has for the type cable you need :

Audacity in Record should be able to capture the audio . Then Export as “WAV (Microsoft) signed 16 bit PCM” .


#8

[QUOTE=deanwitty;2657533]Wouldn’t it be easier and cheaper to buy a RCA to 1/8" cable and use Audacity or any of the free audio capture progs to record to WAV through the microphone input? I notice that youtube is populated with videos by people attempting to ofer workarounds for a buggy driver to get the audio to work with that easycap device[/QUOTE]

Yes, I have found that possible complication in my research as well. The audacity program & cable sounds like a great idea!!! but my laptop appears to have only usb ports…unless the microphone input is one of the tiny ports next to the earphone jack… Also, being a complete novice, is there any trick to downloading the wav file to a cd? or is it all in one step with the audacity program?


#9

Audacity will just do the conversion to a .wav file.
From there you will need a software that will write(burn) an Audio CD .
I’m fairly sure that is what you want.

I will go with what I use to burn Mucic Audio CDs
ImgBurn.
There are many guides for using ImgBurn but I will do a short one for you.
Select :Tools/ Create CUE File…
Browse for the .wav file.
Since you only have one set a 2 second pregap (I think this is Default).
You shouldn’t need to do anything with the CD-Text for this.
Select OK
This should put a .cue file in the same folder as the .wav file .
Select: Write mode & the .cue file. ImgBurn will use the .cue file to write(burn) the .wav file to the CD.
The only thing that might cause a problem is if the time legnth of the .wav file is longer than the time legnth of the CD blank.

Edit: Forgot about the mic-in question. It should be the one next to the headphone(earphone) in . If color coded correctly it should be pink.


#10

The microphone port on the computer will be an “Audio Input” jack, too.


#11

[QUOTE=cholla;2657538]If that is the case you can do just the Audio . There is a cable you will need for this .
It will go strait from the red/white RCA out jacks of the VCR to the mic input jack of your laptop . I think you will find the quality of that acceptable .

If you were after better quality like it was music then inputting into a sound card would be better.

In this link I posted images that show the differenct between Line-in & Mic-in :

This is what Amazon has for the type cable you need :

Audacity in Record should be able to capture the audio . Then Export as “WAV (Microsoft) signed 16 bit PCM” .[/QUOTE]

Ok, so it sounds like I definitely should have a mic input jack on my laptop. Thank you, I will try this cable!


#12

[QUOTE=ChristineBCW;2657546]The microphone port on the computer will be an “Audio Input” jack, too.[/QUOTE]

Ok, I think I have it. Thank you for your help and guidance!


#13

[QUOTE=cholla;2657545]Audacity will just do the conversion to a .wav file.
From there you will need a software that will write(burn) an Audio CD .
I’m fairly sure that is what you want.

I will go with what I use to burn Mucic Audio CDs
ImgBurn.
There are many guides for using ImgBurn but I will do a short one for you.
Select :Tools/ Create CUE File…
Browse for the .wav file.
Since you only have one set a 2 second pregap (I think this is Default).
You shouldn’t need to do anything with the CD-Text for this.
Select OK
This should put a .cue file in the same folder as the .wav file .
Select: Write mode & the .cue file. ImgBurn will use the .cue file to write(burn) the .wav file to the CD.
The only thing that might cause a problem is if the time legnth of the .wav file is longer than the time legnth of the CD blank.

Edit: Forgot about the mic-in question. It should be the one next to the headphone(earphone) in . If color coded correctly it should be pink.[/QUOTE]

Good info! The mic-in jack, actually both the small ports next to the earphone jack, appear to be sealed off. This laptop is a loaner from school (college)…looks like I will need to snag a different PC to do my downloading.


#14

That or back to seeing if you can do it with a USB device .
I think all of those need a driver & I’ve never looked to see if there is an Audio only one. Money wise I think one similar to the one you were already looking at might work as Audio only.
I have an older one by Dazzle for doing this but it is no longer made.


#15

Yes, that’s true. If the usb device works, I may be able to do some editing by the way of tracks, so I can split the workout up and skip to the second half.


#16

It will take some learning but Audacity can cut it up into as many tracks as you want.
For ImgBurns’ .cue treat each track like a seperate song.
Other than the first you may want to go to no gap.
For this you need to make sure they are in the correct order chronologically.


#17

[QUOTE=cholla;2657556]It will take some learning but Audacity can cut it up into as many tracks as you want.
For ImgBurns’ .cue treat each track like a seperate song.
Other than the first you may want to go to no gap.
For this you need to make sure they are in the correct order chronologically.[/QUOTE]
Good to know! Cholla, Thanks a lot for your advice. Hope you have a great evening.


#18

Apparently all those Easycap units are imitations of an EZcap device. And it appears that the most common complaint with the units is the need to install the proper audio driver. And tinker with a few Windows settings. Check the very helpful videos here. The software included with the unit may not have an option to capture simply sound to WAV, but once the device is installed and functioning properly, you should be able to select it in Audacity and follow Cholla’s good instructions.


#19

Thank you…good stuff - and will do!!!


#20

@ retrochick , I managed to get my capture card working .
I was able to use VLC players Capture mode.
I found that the yellow cable needed to be connected for this to work even if there is no video being captured.