Digitizing Old Movies

I’ve mentioned that the horrific F5 tornado that ripped through Joplin got me thinking about what I would want to save if I knew something like that was barreling down on us – our family home movies and pictures – and how I really want to focus and get everything stored onto DVD for safe keeping.

I would be physically sick if I ever lost these precious old movies of when the boys were little.

So, that’s what I’m doing, digitizing our old movies, burning them onto DVD’s and will soon store them in our safe deposit box.

(The same with our pictures, too. Which is the next project after I finish this).

So, I hounded Kevin into setting up the old camera at work and I’ve been busy capturing the videos for the past several days.

Digitizing Old Movies

It’s slow going, but it’s not that bad since I can start the process, set the timer and then come back and check on it. I’ve been capturing the video in chunks because Kevin started to do this a while back and said that it would crash the computer after a time period. So I’m capturing it in chunks to hopefully avoid that snafu.

I just finished capturing the first tape and I will be burning it onto a DVD very soon. I will also be snipping portions of that tape and uploading them to YouTube, so you should see some of those snippets very soon.

Lucky you. 😉

Our first video camera was an anniversary gift to each other for our first anniversary. (I’ll likely post a snippet of when Kevin and I took a bite out of our first tier wedding cake that we saved – with interesting results, I might add). I took hours, and hours, and HOURS, of video of absolutely nothing. Well, not nothing, per se, but rather nothing really interesting happened, and I have to admit, it’s pretty boring, but it’s fun to watch all of the nieces and nephews when they were so YOUNG. (Geez, it doesn’t even seem possible).

I’m really looking forward to getting to the tapes when the boys were babies. I can’t wait to watch those again. It’s been YEARS since I watched them and I’m really looking forward to sharing some of those precious moments with you all.

This is going to be quite a process, I’m afraid. We have 42 tapes to go through.

Box O' Tapes

I really regret not taking more videos over the years. I was so good about doing that in the early years (thank God), but as the kids got older, and well, resistant, (HA!), I just didn’t drag out the camera as much.

Later, we ended up buying a camera that filmed on DVD’s, which I’ll go through and post snippets of when I get to them. That will be a lot easier, obviously.

I’ve already told Kevin and the boys that we’re taking our video camera on vacation with us this year. We’ve talked about taking our video camera with us on vacation every year, and every year, Kevin and I would look at each other, contemplate the hassle of carrying around a video camera and nearly at the same time, wrinkle our noses and say, “Nah. Forget it.” (Just one of the reasons I adore that man – we think so much alike).

But I’m not going to allow him to talk me out of it this go-around. As we did last year, we will take enough cameras for everyone to use (the boys actually took some of the coolest photos), as well as our video camera and we’ll take turns filming each other. It should be interesting what the boys choose to focus on. HA! Kevin bought a whole spindle worth of 30-minute DVD’s for really cheap, so we won’t run out of DVD’s to use any time soon.

Oops. The timer just went off. Time to capture the next installment of our VERY EXCITING LIVES.

Hey. We may not be the most exciting people out there, but I wouldn’t trade our mundane moments for anything in the world.

P.S. – Here is our set up in case you want to do something similar with your old movies:

We’re using the Pinnacle Dazzle DVC 100 DVD Recorder. Here is the product description:

With the Pinnacle Dazzle DVC 100 DVD Recorder, anyone can transfer video to a DVD using a PC—no experience required. Simply connect a VCR, DVD player, camcorder or other video device to the Pinnacle Dazzle DVC 100 DVD Recorder USB hardware. Then use Pinnacle Dazzle DVC 100 DVD Recorder software to create a DVD recording complete with menus and chapter at the click of a button. You can burn your video directly to a DVD without first copying files to the PC hard drive, saving both valuable time and space. The DVD can be played on any home DVD player. DVD burning has never been so easy thanks to the Pinnacle Dazzle DVC 100 DVD Recorder.

And it really is easy. And it saves as a Windows Media File, so there should be very little conversion required.

Though Dazzle probably has software that comes with it, we’re using Windows Movie Magic to actually capture the video. It recognizes the video camera and it’s as simple as clicking “start capturing video.” Once you click on “stop capture”, then it saves to whatever folder you designate. Once it’s on your hard drive (actually, you don’t have to save the video on your hard drive if you don’t want to, but it’s less likely to crash when you burn it on to a DVD later), you can burn it to a DVD. Once on a DVD, then you can edit the video and upload it.

Anyway, that might give you a starting point if you’re interested in digitizing any of your old movies.

P.S.S. – I was not compensated, in any way, for mentioning this product. It’s what we use and we like it because it’s easy and seems to do the job. Remember? I don’t do product reviews. Ever. I should write a disclaimer or something.