Recording to VHS, and back again…

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    • #79881

      Hi guys, 
      I really need some help, and I'm sorry I'm not sure if this is the right forum to post this question but anyway…
      I have finished making a 1990s themed music video in Adobe After Effects. To give it an authentic look I want to record onto a VHS tape and then back onto my computer before it goes on YouTube. Any ideas on the best way to do this?
      I tried using a DVD player with a USB slot, putting the .mov on the USB and pluging the AV OUT of the DVD player into the AV IN of the VCR and taping. It worked okay but the image width looked a bit squished and it was also in black and white for some reason.
      Any ideas would be greatly, GREATLY, appreciated.




    • #210775

      You might do some research and see if After Effects can produce that effect. After Effects is a pretty robust application, and I’ll bet that you can produce that same effect without having to use an actual VCR.

    • #210799

      I would recommend going the VCR route, since VHS will also give you that drop in quality that you might be looking for.  I would put the video onto Mini-DV or Digital8 tape, hook a camcorder upto your VCR and then copy the recording onto VHS.  From there, if you wanted some RF interference or even just the look of a second generation VHS copy, I would hook another VHS up by either RF cable (remember the old "pink" cable company cables?) or the yellow RCA and copy to another VHS VCR before heading back to Mini-DV/Digital8 and into your computer.

    • #210808

      Don't do it! Few people realise how awful video quality was back then with big TV sets and 240 line pictures. AE can indeed simulate it very well, but it might be far more watchable to simulate it and retain some definition for modern viewers – some of whom might just assume you are a rotten video producer and not get it at all. If you think back, the sort of real problems then were faults – like drop out, and a small skew to the image top and bottom, plus the sparkly look to reds that can be easily achieved. When copying tapes like this to degrade the image, the black and white result often comes from losing the colour subcarrier burst – so the line between wanted artefacts and real errors is very small. I'd try to keep the digits intact, but simulate the lower resolution. Pixels are very different to scanned lines on a CRT – so in a way, you need extended definition to be able to mess it up. Re-digitising analogue blurriness looks very horrible.

    • #210812

      I agree with Paulears – dont do it! 


      There are several plug ins for after effects that do this. One is called Damage by DigieEffects. There are also several videos on Youtube that can show you how to do this in After Effects. You will be happier with the results. 

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