Video Media

Since the first moving pictures were recorded, different media were used to store them.

Which media formats are still around and how to save or edit them for future use?

The first private recordings were actually on film and not on video media.
Finding some old 8mm and 16mm film rolls from around 1935 and the wish to recover and store those long forgotten moments is a job for the specialists. Because of the former used frame rates that differ from modern video, playback might be possible if there is still a projector around. But converting film to video needs a projector that's frame rate can be adjusted to fit to video - and the video timing then has to be corrected to play back with normal time. Otherwise everything is too fast and if there is audio, this would be out of sync. For film->video transfer, find some studio to do that job for you. The money is well invested and you get the quality those old memories deserve.

The first consumer camcorders came 1983 with cassettes named like:

  • Video-8
  • Hi-8
  • VHS-C
  • SVHS-C

Those are all called analog tapes today, with PAL and NTSC standard. While VHS-C and SVHS-C can also be played back in big (S)VHS players with special adapters, Video-8 and Hi-8 need a proper camcorder for playback. There were also stand alone Hi-8 players, but those were very rate. If some old analog player can be found at home, at eBay or elsewhere... those tapes can be digitized at home with most modern computer systems. The only thing needed is some analog->USB converter and a supporting video editing software with easy usage. The tapes are played back and the PC system will record/digitize the footage. Afterwards, unwanted parts can be cut away or longer recordings can be split into separate movies.

In the year 1995, digital video tapes named DV, Digital-8 and later HDV wiped out the analog recordings quickly. Quality was much better and editing was easy... until ~2015. Nowadays there are hardly any PC systems that offer a FireWire connection and the mostly used Windows operating system is only using some old legacy device drivers to connect digital camcorders.

Since nearly all digital camcorders also have analog outputs, some analog->USB converter will do the job. If the digital quality should be fully preserved, some external studio for recording to a PC or a video editing system with DV/HDV Firewire input would be required. Casablanca-4 Studio systems can be found at local resellers, found here.

From 2008 onward, consumer camcorders all record with different kinds of memory cards.

The big advantage: for all cards there are card-readers available for simple USB connection.

Although there are many file formats, many different codecs and different frame rates that may be on such a memory card, at least all consumer standards can be imported in all major video editing suites.

Be sure to continue to our video file format information

Comments are closed.