What to do when you inherit the family library of photos, videos, and documents? (Part 8)

Unlike digitizing audio, old home movies or videos can be tricky.  As I mentioned in the previous blog having the right original equipment in working order is sometimes the greatest challenge.  How many people do you know with a working VHS machine or 8mm projector?

Most home video transferring devices range in price from as little as $10 up to around $100.  These devices are easy to use for someone who isn’t familiar with or comfortable with video or computers.  They take a lot of the guesswork out of the hardware connections or selecting the correct video file format or screen size.  The drawback is they usually lack the ability to adjust things such as the audio recording volume, contrast or color levels.

One major drawback to digitalizing video is the size of the files.  Digitalized video eats up a lot of digital storage space.  An old 1-hour family interview transferred from an old VHS tape (screen size 333×480 pixels) to an uncompressed digital file format can take up to 14.2 gigabytes!  Sometimes a video can be compressed to save space, but this sometimes can affect the quality of the digitalized video.  It also requires a lot of computer speed or time to compress.

If you don’t feel comfortable trying to transfer your home movies or videos to a digital format consider hiring a reputable professional.

Check out GenealogyChris’s blog next week for sharing these items with family.