VHS-HDD-DVD v.s. VHS-DVD which is better?

Is there any “quality” advantages to dubbing VHS first to HDD then copy to a DVD, rather than dub from a VHS directly to a DVD? I’m thinking quality may be better going the long way but I could be wrong.

Quality wise there probally won’t be any difference. You may want to copy everything to HDD anyway. For no other reason than if an error occurs during the write process, you still have the files intact and won’t have to restart the entire process.

with proper equipment, VHS to HDD is always better. It takes more time, but if quality is important to you, it’s the only way to go.

[QUOTE=Daemonicus]with proper equipment, VHS to HDD is always better. …QUOTE]

What would represent “proper” equipment?

I am currently able to do whatever it takes money wise. However, at the moment I have ready to go the JVC DR-MX1S VHS\DVD\HDD home recorder which can dub from any one of these formats to another.

What type of technology should I review about my equipment that will tell me if it’s “proper” enough?

Thanks for your previous quick reply!

I use an Analog to DV convertor (Canopus ADVC100, now ADVC110). Analog to DV convertors generally will have the best quality since the compression to MPEG2 takes place after the capture. I’m assuming the DR-MX1S can record the video source to MPEG2 to the HDD to be burned later to DVD, which is probably good enough for 95% of the people out there. If the quality is good enough for you, I would stick with what you’ve got. If you’re after a small increase in quality, you may want to look into an Analog to DV convertor (or use a miniDV or D8 camera as a passthrough)

With a standalone DVD Recorder such as your JVC, it should make zero difference.

Also got to remember , quality is only as good as the master ( vhs ) is …

If I did get involved with this analog to DC converter, how would it work with my JVC? Does it hook up via the jacks I have available?

an Analog to DV convertor requires a PC to capture the video coming from the convertor.

But isn’t the JVC recorder changing VHS (analog) to HDD\DVD (Digital) anyhow. Wouldn’t this be the same conversion technique with the same quality outcome. Or are you saying that a analog to DV converter will boost the analog quality better due to how the converter is supposed to do it’s jobs compared to the JVC machine?

The JVC does analog to digital all in one step, which is good enough for most people. You might notice a drop in quality on fast moving scenes, but most people will not be able to tell the difference. You have more options post processing your captured video in you capture to DV (or any avi), like cleaning up video noise, adjusting color balance, etc, etc… Given your situation, don’t even worry about anymore hardware. Your current equipment should do a great job for what you are wanting.

All other respondent posters are correct and Kissapro’s rule-of-thumb is worth remembering whenever transfering any video.

I thought I heard somewhere that HDD could retain more digital information than DVD but it seems this is not true based on what everyone here is saying.

So bottom line, recording from VHS to HDD or VHS - DVD will give the same quality results?

When you talk about drop in quality on fast moving scenes, are you referring to either format I chose to record to? (HDD or DVD)

An intermediate step aka to VHS->HD->DVD will allow you to process the video with another app, to cleanout hiss, crackle & pops from the audio, filter the video, stretch it, shrink it, Enhance colour & contrast, and reduce brightness as well as filter it for noise.

It’s the best way to go.

If on the other hand, you want to keep it simple … VHS->DVD is the better way to go.

I really don’t understand why ANYBODY would want to capture to DV then convert to MPEG-2 - Actually the best solution is capturing uncompressed video and using a professional MPEG-2 codec with 2 or 3 pass VBR :smiley: But we both know this is out of the reach of most people here :smiley: The canopus adv is an analog to DV, despite being a fixed rate 25mbps it still is compressed video - converting that to MPEG-2 means you have to recompress the signal, therefore you get unecessary generation loss - and of course DV uses YUV 4:1:1 colourspace, half the chroma resolution as MPEG-2 - this for the most part will be unoticed for most people - but can be noticed on some bigger sets and on some particular scenes.

There are a few capture devices that will capture straight to MPEG-1 or MPEG-2 - The best quality you wll find for the PC is the ADS INstant DVD 2.0, this external USB2 capture device uses high quality comb filtering and other enhancements that make your final product look just as good as your original. OR… you could buy yourself a decent DVD recorder and record straight to DVD - The DVD recorder has a buffer anyways that gets filled before it writes the video to the DVD - so the HDD is really not necessary unless you want to do editing afterwards.

Personally I use a Toshiba DR4 and have found it to be stable, well built, very sturdy connectors and very good quality video compared to even the JVC and Liteon models with none of the jittering, green tint and fan interferences of other models.

It’s not the fact you are using a DV converter that makes your signal look better. Remember, any capture device whether standalone or PC always captures video uncompressed into a frame buffer, that uncompressed frame is then passed to the codec that compresses it. Whether the quality will be enhanced will depend on whether there are any filters between the video grabber and the codec - There is no real advantage to capturing DV first then converting to MPEG-2 - Also the canopus product is not a great capture device - their codec is not all that great compared to other A/D passthru devices like the datavideo and matrox rtx/axio series of cards, even the ADS PYRO units. I have personally used all of this myself and I have found that capturing straight to MPEG-2 provided the best quality - I rather have a hardware capable of capturing straight to the native YUV 4:2:0 DVD format.
Remember, garbage in garbage out - if you are capturing from dubbed VHS (a copy) or a very old/poor VHS you may require a TBC or a DVD recorder that is tolerant enough to weak VHS signals without being thrown off into thinking it is macrovision - my Toshiba DR4 has handled the worst of tapes. I admit that in some very difficult (hopeless cases) you might benefit from using an analog to DV converter (only as a last resort) but so far I haven’t had to do so:)

i use a phillips dvd recorder to record dvd its quick easy and the final dvd can be edited or altered in your pc if you like

macrovision can be a problem with retail vhs but there are loads of gadgets out there that replace the timebase signal

Some hardware MPEG-2 capture devices support this, in realtime, while capturing your MPEG-2 file - My ADS Instant DVD 2.0 and Instant DVD+Mp3 does this - Allows adjusting of Chroma, Saturation, Brightness, Contrast, Tint and Sharpness with realtime preview to TV, all even while capturing.
Remember that if you capture to a DV AVI file and you apply any colour correction or post processing, that segment will need to be re-compressed…

Womble MPEG Video Wizard is a native format MPEG2 editor that supports colour correction, filters, etc… and smart rendering - it is better off capturing off a high bitrate MPEG-2 (say 25mbps) and recompressing to MPEG-2 than going DV to MPEG2… you preserve the full colour resolution.