We have collected together the top factors that you must consider while choosing a video transfer service.
Perhaps you’ve been that family member over the years with the camera diligently recording and documenting all the special events in the life of your family. Births, birthdays, sporting events, and anniversaries, you got it all!
Or maybe that media, all the 8mm films, photos, 35mm slides and videotapes were handed down to you to archive and preserve the family’s legacy. Now the whole family knows you are in charge to get this project started? And after 50 some years, now everyone is suddenly anxious to see what’s on the films.
Maybe you began this journey with excitement, like lifting the lid of a treasure box. Who knows what precious memories will be found here? But that adventurous spirit quickly fades as it becomes obvious when you look at the condition of the films and photos. First off they need to be dusted and cleaned off. But then what? Photos are still pretty easy to look at but what about the rest of it? Who has a working video camera to play the videotapes, or going back further who has an 8mm projector to watch the films?
Most of our video transfer service customers come to us with these same first questions. What do we have? What’s on them? How do I preview these to know what to keep?
They really don’t need to ask why a video transfer service, they know they need help here.
As you begin the search for a video transfer service here are a few things to help in your hunt.
Best Video Transfer Service Tips
Begin with Organization
Organize each media in chronological order as best you can.
- Photos, place them in order from oldest to most current. If photos are still in albums and can’t be removed, order the albums in order. 35mm slides need to be removed from their trays or circular reels and stack them top to bottom. Secure with a rubber band for each group of 50 slides.
- 8mm film reels, organize them from oldest to most current. If no years are listed keep the same type reels together. (color, size, type)
- Videotapes are next; organize from oldest to newest (group by tape type, HI8 tapes, smaller miniDV tapes group together)
Delivery Format Options
You really don’t have to spend too much time thinking about what you want your old analog media transferred to. Every item whether it is photographs, 35mm slides, videotape, or 8mm home films should be digitize. Technically it means turning
hard copy photos, magnetic audio and videotapes and movie film will become 0s and 1s. These zeros and ones will not fade or discolor, basically locking in colors that won’t fade, have no tracking issues, or pops in the audio. Digital is a much more stable option that is future-proofed. It can be used in the future.
You have convinced yourself that you need to digitize your old analog media but do you want DVDs, a cloud link, or a USB thumb drive to store and watch your media?
The answer depends on how you will watch your films. If on a TV then maybe a set of DVDs will work for you. DVDs as great as they are can get fingerprints on the disc that can cause the playback to freeze or jump.
If you will watch your films and old videotapes on a computer then a USB thumb drive will hold all your media and provide the easiest interface. Your media can be transferred to iTunes and then transferred and made watchable on tablets and phones. You can also plug your USB thumb drive into newer TVs. Simply switch to USB and see a menu list of all your media available.
A final option to consider for your delivery is a cloud link to Google Drive. Here you can share a link with others to view the media on a computer. Anyone with this link will also be able to download the media to their computer.
When Choosing a Video Transfer Service
When beginning a search in Google you might use terms like video tape transfer service or transfer video tapes to digital. You want a reputable company to digitize your media. You only want to do this once, so choose wisely. Usually, you will want a company that has a long successful track record and not just a start-up business. You need to find out about their guarantee policy. Because this is a service business most will continue to work with you to make you happy. Redoing the work is expected.
Find out about the workers at the location, and their experience. Is work subcontracted out to other countries?
Turnaround time and cost are key considerations. A one or two-day turnaround is fine for 1-2 tapes and expects to pay around $15 for each tape.
No matter how you acquire old analog media it needs to be converted to digital to preserve the images from the old tapes, films and photos. Once digital it is easy to store, watch and share with others. If you have family member spread out through the country or the world, the ease of sharing and viewing on demand, a Google cloud link can’t be overlooked.
Digital delivery options are USB thumb drive, DVDs and a Google cloud link.
When considering a digital transfer service you should look for experience, length in business. Ask about their satisfaction guarantee and the ability to redo your order if needed for better results. Pricing and turnaround time are important to consider as well.
A word from our sponsor:
In this Blog we have given you everything you need to know to wisely choose a video transfer Service Company.
If we may we’d like to give you some answers from The Video Editor concerning video transfers.
The Video Editor was founded in 1993 and Steve Kosch our owner continues to manage the business. Steve was a former CNN and ABC anchor prior to starting the company. His broadcast roots are at the foundation of the company. We always strive for high standards for the best price and with hundreds of thousands of happy customer these past nearly 30 years we are sure you’ll be happy as well.
We charge $15 to transfer any size 8mm film reel, videotape and or a batch of 25 photos or 35mm slides. Turnaround time is usually a few days. Larger orders are 21 days or less.
Our guarantee is that we want you to be a lifelong happy customer and will work with you to make every transfer the best possible.
We offer free consultations and estimates and stand behind every order. For convenience on our website thevideoeditor.com we offer a no-nonsense straightforward way to order a media digitizing kit. Once ordered we send you a prepaid box and shipping label to return all your media. Once the order is received we keep you in the loop as your media is digitized. We return your new digital copies along with your original media. You will be happy. Thanks for listening.