Hey all, Logan from Sweden here.
Sorry if this already has been answered, still digging through the forum trying to see if I can find the best answers. Meanwhile, perhaps someone with the expertise could point me to the right direction answering a couple of questions regarding digitizing old VHS casettes and analogue Hi8 tapes. Thought I'd put my good ol' Pioneer DVR LX60D to good use and hopefully good enough, so the questions are:
Is my Pioneer DVR LX60HD good enough to get the best quality recording from VHS and analogue 8mm/Hi8 to the Pioneer HDD and later for DVD, transfer to PC to store as both TS_VIDEO and MVK?
When using analogue 8mm/Hi8 tapes, is it better to use S-Video from the camera instead of FireWire since there could be some digital conversion compression process?
There are probably better ways, but this is what I got at hand now. Will this be good enough to be close to great quality?
DVR: Pioneer DVR LX60HD
VHS: Sharp VC FH7
Cam: Sony DCR-TRV460E
Thanks a lot for any input!
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Last edited by Loganix; 11th Jan 2019 at 00:26.
Lossless 4:2:2 S-Video capture would be better than DV over Firewire, though PAL DV (4:2:0) is considered better than NTSC DV (4:1:0). DV is easier though.
Hi KarMa and thanks for your reply, so if I understand you correctly, using S-Video from the camera recording on my Pioneer LX60D would be the way to go?
The best method would be to capture S-Video using a capture card and recording it losslessly @4:2:2 with something like HuffYUV or Lagarith on a computer. This would create large filesizes and take much longer (mostly from research and testing). Doing a S-Video to DVD Capture should be "good enough" as you put. I've recently captured directly to DVD using the highest bitrate settings (1hr per disc) and it turned out well, it's just not the absolute best and you have less control over the process. Now if it's a question of Firewire (DV) vs DVD (MPEG2), I would pick the 1hr DVD any day.
As you say, with a capture card the sizes would probably be pretty big and more time spent for research and eventually some compression which in the end might not be much better result than with the DVR. Though, I am investing some time now researching which will yield me a satisfying result. S-Video seems to have a tiny bit more detail and what feels like less pixelation than FireWire, both tested with standard play SP. S-Video XP+ gives a bit more detail. I guess XP+ is equal to your setting since XP+ also only gives an hour on a DVD.
I'm trying not to be too much pedantic about it, but it's hard when watching the tape from the cam or the recording on the HDD from the DVR pops a bit more in detail and color whilst even the best result from XP+ looks a bit flat and missing some of that detail. Maybe the DVR since it upscales it to 1080p and some other processes makes it looks better. Or is it just the loss of quality copying to dvd. Going a bit nuts here since I really want to have all these memories saved in digital form in case the tapes deteriorate over time.
Perhaps the best would be just to sacrifice some of that very little quality loss for the sake of preserving the tapes than spending countless hours comparing and researching. Just want to have it done without having the feeling in the back of my head, "Could I've done it better".