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Poll: How did you get rid of your old VHS tape movies?

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  1. Roadrunner JohnnyBob's Avatar
    Join Date: Feb 2007
    Location: United States
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    All but about 15-20 are now on DVDs in my archives. What do I do with the other several hundred? They occupy a lot of space. Many are deteriorating and have glitches on playback. I still have one good VCR but never use it anymore, DVDs only now. So do I throw them out in the trash? Give them away (who would want them)? Try to sell them (how?)? I need the storage space. I put an incredible amount of time and money into acquiring them, so they have sentimental value. Difficult decision.

    No doubt many of you have had a similar conflict. How did you resolve it?
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  2. Member
    Join Date: Aug 2005
    Location: Palo Alto, California USA
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    I got rid of hundreds of VHS tapes last year through Craigslist (the free section). It took three separate postings, and dealing with an array of flakazoids and people who need to be medicated ("can you deliver them to my cabin 100 miles away from where you live?"), but they're now in the hands of others. It turns out that there are still a lot folks who actually prefer tapes to DVDs ("I can stop the tape, pull it out, play another, and put the original back in, and restart play exactly where I left off. Can't do that with a DVD"). Many seniors, in fact.

    If you have CL or freecycle in your locale, then give those a shot. You'll be amazed at the response volume!
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  3. Member orsetto's Avatar
    Join Date: Oct 2007
    Location: NYC
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    Wow- I was just about to post the exact same question! Amazing the telepathy that passes between VH members sometimes. It does seem as though the only value these tapes have is sentimental (and of course the memory of how many paychecks were doled out over the years to acquire them). I'm halfway thru my own transfer project, and beginning to seriously wonder how I'll dispose of 3000 tapes when I'm done. I always vaguely thought I could post a note on Craigs List, and some eccentric soul would come by with a U-haul to pick them up and enjoy in their big house somewhere. But thats unlikely: despite the thousands of dollars spent over the years and the breadth of the collection, the fact is no one wants VHS anymore. And since they're virtually all "personal recordings" and not commercial Hollywood tapes, I can't really advertise them on eBay or donate them to a library. At this point I'm guessing 'll probably need to pay a couple hundred $ to a recycling plant to come tow them away to a landfill once I finish the last transfer.

    So sad: its like watching the last 29 years of collecting disappear into thin air . To think when I started blank TDK 120s were selling for $12.99 apiece! Thats why I shake my head at the endless number of posts from people wanting to buy the "cheapest" available media, then complaining when it doesn't work. Even at their highest current reseller prices, Taiyo Yuden 8x Premium and Verbatim 8x DataLife cost only 40 cents per disc. Compared to even current VHS prices ($1.79 for a Maxell T120), DVD-R is a bargain dream come true for old compulsive collectors like me. Although I have to admit, I have no illusions that the DVD-Rs will last as long as the tapes have: no deterioration on any of 3000 tapes over the course of 29 years in casual basement storage is pretty darned good. Whether a 40-cent disc full of semi-organic volatile dyes can be as durable as magnetic tape is something I hope I live long enough to discover .
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  4. Member wtsinnc's Avatar
    Join Date: Nov 2006
    Location: United States
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    I have accumulated well over 1000 (all VHS) and still have most of them.
    I did give away about 100 each to three friends, but I can't find a home for the rest.

    Charitable organizations don't want them, neither do churches or anyone involved in security/surveillance;
    they all have moved to digital tape or DVD.

    I suppose they'll eventually end up in a dumpster somewhere, but first, I'm going to make a few more inquiries and try to find a willing recipient.
    THREADKILLER !
    References on File.
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  5. Member Noahtuck's Avatar
    Join Date: Jun 2004
    Location: ®Inside My Avatar™© U.S.
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    Originally Posted by tomlee59
    ("I can stop the tape, pull it out, play another, and put the original back in, and restart play exactly where I left off. Can't do that with a DVD").
    Sure ya can... i do it all the time 8)
    Every dvd player i have ever owned retained a memory for any disc i pulled in the middle of the film.
    Once after quite some period of time and several dvd's i put in a dvd and it started in the middle of the movie, i was like WTF!!!
    Then i remembered, oh yeah!!! i started watching that like 2 months ago & pulled it out.


    All the one's i threw out over the years were self recorded VHS tapes of tv shows.

    Store bought one's took a trip to the local Goodwill.

    If you have them on dvd... what's sentimental about some obsolete crappy quality bulky format

    I did the same thing with my VCD's from years and years past....
    When it came out on dvd, into the trash they went.
    Friends did not want some crappy quality vcd disc when they could have it on dvd
    Originally a member since 2001, LONG LIVE TARAN's!!!
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  6. Member
    Join Date: Feb 2004
    Location: Pleasant Hill, CA
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    I don't have nearly as many as you guys, but I've been looking at the same issue. We have a local used music store that also still handles VHS tapes, so I was going to see how many they would buy, and the ones left over will get donated to the local library. These are commercial tapes; not sure what I'll do with the few homemade tapes once I transfer them (well, the tape of our wedding I'll keep ).
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  7. Member
    Join Date: Feb 2003
    Location: USA
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    As I see it, here in the USA keeping the tapes as proof that you didn't pirate the video for the DVD you made could be a good thing.

    Not to mention if you still have them you have the ability to go back and recapture them with better quality later.

    Cheers
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  8. Member
    Join Date: Oct 2004
    Location: Freedonia
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    Originally Posted by TBoneit
    As I see it, here in the USA keeping the tapes as proof that you didn't pirate the video for the DVD you made could be a good thing.
    Given that the number of consumer homes that have been raided for "pirating" in the USA is currently zero, that belief could border a little on the paranoid. And if the MPAA can get private homes raided for copying movies, I'd suggest that under such circumstances that they could argue in court that purchasing the tapes did not give you the right to make any copies. I'm not saying that this argument would carry the day, I'm just saying it could be made. Or they could demand that you prove that you purchased the tapes and if you can't do that, then as far as they are concerned you don't have any rights to copy them. So either way they could try to get you and there goes your "proof" out the window if they win the argument.
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  9. Member wtsinnc's Avatar
    Join Date: Nov 2006
    Location: United States
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    Sounds like a great way to get rid of the tapes;
    let the MPAA confiscate them !
    THREADKILLER !
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  10. Roadrunner JohnnyBob's Avatar
    Join Date: Feb 2007
    Location: United States
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    Originally Posted by jman98
    ...Given that the number of consumer homes that have been raided for "pirating" in the USA is currently zero...
    Not so.
    A home in my small midwestern town in the USA was raided a year or two ago, which made the newspaper headlines here. I believe the guy went to prison and had to pay a big fine. Of course he was selling them (games and movies) commercially over the internet which is presumably how they caught him then decided to prosecute. I doubt it would be worth their time and effort otherwise, so those who do it privately just for themselves are probably pretty safe - as long as they don't go blabbing and bragging about it. There are probably too many in the latter category for them to do anything effective.
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  11. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
    Join Date: Jun 2003
    Location: dFAQ.us/lordsmurf
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    Common movies like Home Alone or Lethal Weapon are more or less trash. True, nobody wants those. Give them to an electronics recycle facility.

    Movies not commercially available on DVD, or not available in the same version (edited, unedited, uncut, etc), are still desired. Just last night I bought a VHS tape for $5 off Amazon -- there is no DVD version of that movie. Sell or otherwise pass on these kinds of tapes, do not destroy them, collectors out there WILL want these.
    Want my help? Ask here! (not via PM!)
    FAQs: Best Blank DiscsBest TBCsBest VCRs for captureRestore VHS
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  12. Member Noahtuck's Avatar
    Join Date: Jun 2004
    Location: ®Inside My Avatar™© U.S.
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    Originally Posted by JohnnyBob
    Originally Posted by jman98
    ...Given that the number of consumer homes that have been raided for "pirating" in the USA is currently zero...
    Not so.
    A home in my small midwestern town in the USA was raided a year or two ago, which made the newspaper headlines here. I believe the guy went to prison and had to pay a big fine. Of course he was selling them (games and movies) commercially over the internet which is presumably how they caught him then decided to prosecute. I doubt it would be worth their time and effort otherwise, so those who do it privately just for themselves are probably pretty safe - as long as they don't go blabbing and bragging about it. There are probably too many in the latter category for them to do anything effective.
    Apples and oranges dude.... apples and oranges
    Originally a member since 2001, LONG LIVE TARAN's!!!
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  13. The Old One SatStorm's Avatar
    Join Date: Aug 2000
    Location: Hellas (Greece), E.U.
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    Well, if you have any music videos / music shows / music related stuff on VHS, you can always send them to me!

    I'm a huge music video collector and I'm interesting on this! Forgotten tapes from MTV for example, or other music channels you have there. Crap quality / bad quality / good quality, I don't really care. The older the better of course!

    Regarding movies / etc, you can always give the tapes to your local library.
    La Linea by Osvaldo Cavandoli
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  14. Member
    Join Date: Aug 2006
    Location: United States
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    I only had a few commercial VHS movies, but I donated them to my local library. They were in good shape and the library was glad to have them. The video section is mostly VHS, and mostly well-used tapes.
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  15. Member victoriabears's Avatar
    Join Date: May 2004
    Location: Canada
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    Given that most of the VHS is plastic, a good local recycle plant should take them, my local Value Village takes them a few dozen at a time.
    PAL/NTSC problem solver.
    USED TO BE A UK Equipment owner., NOW FINISHED WITH VHS CONVERSIONS-THANKS
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  16. Member
    Join Date: Aug 2005
    Location: Palo Alto, California USA
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    Originally Posted by Noahtuck
    Originally Posted by tomlee59
    ("I can stop the tape, pull it out, play another, and put the original back in, and restart play exactly where I left off. Can't do that with a DVD").
    Sure ya can... i do it all the time 8)
    Every dvd player i have ever owned retained a memory for any disc i pulled in the middle of the film.
    Once after quite some period of time and several dvd's i put in a dvd and it started in the middle of the movie, i was like WTF!!!
    Then i remembered, oh yeah!!! i started watching that like 2 months ago & pulled it out.
    Then you've been very lucky. My POS(tm) Polaroid portable player doesn't even retain memory related to the disc it just played. My father's standalone player will retain state about the most recent disc, but that memory goes away if the mains are ever disconnected. For someone of your experience, this is of course not a problem, but you have to understand that the same folks who would prefer VHS to DVD are self-selected not to be of your tribe. Much of the world is still playing catch-up.

    The point I was endeavoring to make is that the physical memory of a stopped tape is obviously a low-power, nonvolatile, user-friendly memory for the technically maladroit. It relies on no software, no assumptions of how a firmware engineer chose to write the underlying code, etc., and most important, relies on zero sophistication of the user. And that has an appeal for a certain not-insignificant fraction of the population. The overwhelming response to my tapes giveaway spoke to that.
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