[Techtalk] VHS to DVD

Carla Schroder carla at bratgrrl.com
Wed Jul 18 17:22:57 UTC 2012

On Wednesday, July 18, 2012 04:58:47 PM David Sumbler wrote:
> I'm running Ubuntu 11.10.
> I've bought 2 different devices which supposedly allow you to get data
> from a VHS videotape player on to a computer.  (I have a number of old
> VHS tapes which I'd like to put on to DVD.)
> One device is a CnM "Click & Convert", which I bought from Maplin.  The
> other is an Ion "Video 2 PC Mk 2" which I bought from PC World.  In both
> cases I was assured that they would work fine with Linux.
> The first comes with software for Windows, and the second has software
> for Windows and Mac.  I didn't expect there to be software for Linux,
> but I hoped that somehow I would be able to read data from the USB port.
> Can anyone make any suggestions as to what software I should get in
> order to read this data and do something useful with it?  Or am I just
> wasting my time?  Most of what I have found so far on line seems to
> suggest that video to DVD is next to impossible with Linux, but I find
> that hard to accept.  Still, if necessary I'll have to take both
> products back to the shops and get my money back.
> David

The most reliable way that I know is to use a TV capture card to copy the tape 
to your PC, and here are several that are well-supported in Linux. Then use 
OpenShot or whatever your fave Linux video editing software is for fine-tuning.

The Ion gadget outputs raw video, which should be readable by VLC, OpenShot, 
and other Linux video and transcoding software. If you can find the details of 
the file formats these devices output then I can probably be more helpful.

Carla Schroder
ace Linux nerd
author of Linux Cookbook,
Linux Networking Cookbook,
Book of Audacity

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