Video Tape Transfer FAQs

What new formats are available?

  • DVDs - a playable DVD can hold 2 hours of content. If the 5 VHS tapes are each 2 hours long, then it will require 5 DVDs to hold the content. If we place multiple tapes onto one DVD, each video tape will be its own chapter listed in the initial table of contents, and the viewer will be able to go directly to that chapter with their remote controller. Sometimes, VHS tapes were recorded in SLP (Super Long Play) mode, and could hold up to 6 hours of video content. If this was the case, then there would be need for up to 3 DVDs for each VHS tape recorded in SLP mode.

  • Blu-ray Discs - A Blu-ray Disc, BD-R, requires a Blu-ray Disc Player and holds up to 9 hours of video content. If we place multiple tapes onto one BD-R, each video tape will be its own chapter listed in the initial table of contents, and the viewer will be able to go directly to that chapter with their remote controller.

  • Data File Formats for long term digital storage - once we capture your tape content into our Apple or Adobe software programs, we can format it to any type data file format that you ask for, to be used for later computer editing or sharing via thumb-drive or sending over the Internet. All formats carry the same price for the transfer and reformatting. There are four (4) common data file formats (.avi, .mov, .mp4, and .wmv) and each takes up a different amount of space in data storage. For later editing of video data files, we recommend either .avi files or .mov (Quicktime) movie files. Both take up 8GB in storage space for each hour of video content. If you plan to use a Windows based program for editing, then order the .avi file type. If you have an Apple computer, then order the .mov file type so that you can use Apple's iDVD or Final Cut Pro X software to make changes and create your own movies. If you simply want to save the movies for long term storage, have no interest in editing, and possibly hope to send the movie files across the Internet, then ask for .mp4 file formats. One hour of .mp4 video content is 1GB in size due to the content being highly compressed. The .mp4 format is universally acceptable to all video editing programs. If you have Windows Live Movie Maker, which is free on all Windows 7 computers, we can also deliver .wmv files that are easily modified by Windows Movie Maker. These files are highly compressed and take up only 500MB (1/2 of a GB) for each hour of content. However, .wmv files are only read by Windows editing programs, namely Windows Live Movie Maker.

  • One last thing about Data File Formats - we offer an optional Data DVD on which to place these video data files. It's called the M-DISC and it has a 4.7GB storage capacity. The M-DISC has a shelf life of up to 1,000 years and is the best storage disc out there according the US Dept of Defense. Putting data files on only one computer risks the possibility of hard-drive failure. For long term storage and peace of mind, we recommend M-DISC for storage. Once you have the discs, you can transfer the content over to a computer's hard-drive, and then put the M-DISCs in a secure place for long term storage.

Will you transfer copyrighted material?

Most copyrighted material has a copy protection applied. If the copyrighted material does not have a copy protection applied we can transfer it if permission is granted by the copyright owner or if you agree to sign a waiver that you will only be using the DVD we make as a backup of the material you legally own and not for resale or other commercial purposes.

Do you convert PAL tapes?

We can transfer your PAL tapes or SECAM to North American (NTSC).

Can you repair broken tapes?

Yes, we can repair tapes that have broken cases or torn tape. Repair fees are $25 to repair without transfer. If we repair & transfer the fee is $10. Repairs are not guaranteed.

What types of videotapes can you transfer?

Common types of video tape that we transfer to DVD, Blu-ray Disc or external hard-drive include the following: VHS, S-VHS, VHS-C (cassette), 3/4" U-matic tapes, 8mm camcorder, Hi8 camcorder, Digital8, MiniDV, HDV (high-def), DVCAM, DVCPRO, Betamax, BetaCam, and Digital BetaCam. We can also transfer PAL equivalents to the aforementioned list. Here is a visual guide that displays all of the types of tapes we transfer from both consumer and professional formats.

Consumer Tapes

Professional Broadcast Tapes

Can you transfer high definition camcorder tapes from Canon, Sony, Panasonic, and JVC?

We can transfer high definition content from today's camcorders to either Blu-ray disc or external Hard-drive or USB jump drives or memory cards.

How much content from my tapes can fit on DVD or Blu-ray?

DVDs can hold up to 2 hours of playable content or 4.7GB of data. Blu-ray disc can hold up to 8 hours of standard definition video, 3.5 hours of high definition video, or 25 GB of data.

Can I combine multiple tapes onto one disc?

Most large transfer companies do not offer this service, but Cintrex does! If you have shorter tapes we will combine as many full tapes onto a single disc as we can. This is a great way to consolidate large collections of tapes as well as save on transfer costs.

Describe Cintrex AV’s Video Tape Transfer Service?

This service is for the transfer of video tape content to either DVD or Blu-ray Disc (BD) or to an external Hard-drive. Our process has defined steps for the tape inspection, professional cleaning and preparation, removal or disabling of recording tab (to prevent any new recording over customer content), determining proper order or sequence for transfer (what goes first); then playing the tape on the proper player, ingesting and capturing the content into our systems, editing, compressing data, finalization and placement onto the final digital media. We also provide interim storage on Cintrex storage network for later extra copies or editing corrections.

What does the customer get back with their order?

Cintrex returns all video tapes, any non-transferred damaged video tape, customer supplied notes; plus new DVD, BD or external hard-drive, with customized labels on the disc and sleeve for the DVD/BD case, a packing list detailing the length and condition of original video’s, extra copies if ordered. If the customer supplied or purchased an external hard-drive for storage of the high-definition files, then this is included as well.

Any Recommendations?

For large volume transfer of multiple tapes from a family’s complete video library, it suggested that the video tapes be converted into data file formats and placed on a large external hard-drive to better save on storage space and for longer term preservation. External hard-drives can be supplied by the customer or the retailer or by Cintrex. More value for both customer and retailer.

What are the competitive features about the Cintrex AV video tape transfer service?

  • Video tapes are prepped and cleaned before transfer by professional team that handles approximately 10,000 video tapes per year. The tapes are cleaned by industrial machines to wipe off dirt, loose oxides and metal particles, and detect tape areas in need of repair before beginning transfer. Professional broadcast tapes are made of better quality materials and can last significantly longer through multiple plays before failure.
  • The transfer process utilizes the correct player to match tape format. These high end tape deck and recorder machines are given regular maintenance to the magnetic heads and internal mechanisms so that tape play is optimum.
  • Advanced editing services are available to have the transferred movie look the way it was meant to be shown, including color correction, scene rearranging, scene deletions, background music (a selection of instrumental royalty free music to choose from), sound enhancement, onscreen titles, and special effects.
  • Transfer is made onto Taiyo Yuden white DVD’s or Verbatim white Blu-ray Disc’s that have an advertised shelf life of up to 70 years, and have an inkjet printable surface for customized labels and/or pictures. BD’s can hold up to 8 hours of standard definition movies, or 3.5 hours of high definition movies.
  • Optional delivery of content as H.264/.mov data files on external hard-drive; this type format delivery is ideal for the educated consumer wanting to work on their home movies using their own software editing tools. This service is extra cost, but preferred by discerning customers.
  • Each order is backed up with a soft copy in our network storage system for 90 days to protect against loss of content in return shipment and to make extra copies or edit changes if needed.