Modern Australian Magazine

Saving History One VHS Tape At A Time

  • Written by Logan Peranavan


Remember those old VHS or Betamax tapes? Or Super 8? Can you still remember a time when VHS tapes were how everyone watched movies and camcorders caught our memories on tape? Yes, dear readers, there was a time when Blockbuster bestrode a world stage before Netflix and other streaming sites emerged.

Unfortunately, time is catching up with those tape-bound memories. Information stored on the old magnetic tape formats is in very real danger from physical degradation and playback obsolescence.

When Magnetic Tape Ruled

Sony released its consumer camcorder the Betamovie in 1983. Its mini Betamax cassette tape provided consumers with instant access to memories and major milestone events. Thus home-video history was made.

Dramatic changes in technology evolution have left many of us with our precious memories stored in older formats.

People often discover a forgotten stash of old home videos or movies. They may not want to hang onto cartons of VHS tapes or 8mm films but they want to save those memories on a digital format.

Corrosion Is Not Your Memory’s Friend

Once, seemingly every home used to have a camcorder or Super 8 camera. Those VHS cassettes or reels of 8mm film are now gathering dust in storage or garages across the country.

All those old memories currently stored on magnetic media are slowly corroding away. Magnetic tapes, such as VHS tapes and audiotape or cassettes store information on plastic tape layered with metal oxides. As time passes the magnetic fields on these tapes dissipate and the information can no longer be read.

Today those videotapes are classified as ‘at-risk media’ due to its vulnerability to surface pitting and corrosion, while the technology we use to watch it is disappearing fast.

Tragically, scientists give tape-based data just 15 to 20 years before it's totally unsalvageable.

Hence, converting those mouldering videotapes or 8mm film stock to a digital format is becoming increasingly urgent.

Striking Gold

As VHS tapes are no longer in production, occasionally, there’s value waiting to be discovered lurking in those boxes of old VHS tapes.

After all, scarcity usually spikes prices. Years ago, the Disney organization released Black Diamond Editions of several of its most beloved animated classics.

Today those rare re-releases can be worth hundreds, even thousands of dollars each. So, when you are sifting through those boxes of old VHS tapes, keep your eyes peeled for those purportedly multi-thousand dollar Disney Black Diamond VHS cassettes.

If you come across any of the high-demand classics such as Fantasia, The Rescuers and The Rescuers Down Under, The Jungle Book, Lady and the Tramp, The Sword and the Stone, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid, The Lion King, Aladdin and Aladdin and the King of Thieves, The Fox and the Hound and 101 Dalmatians you could be in the money.

Take your find to Tapes To Digital. They’ll check the tape quality and clean it if necessary. Then you are all set to cash in on your good fortune!

There Is A Solution

Fortunately, the gurus at tapestodigital.com have the very latest technology available enabling them to transfer information from those old magnetic tape formats to today’s digital formats.

Their VHS converter service offers a variety of equipment capable of converting everything from professional 1-inch tape to VHS and audiotapes.

Final Observation

Since the Lumière brothers screened the world’s very first motion picture back in 1895, media capture technology has continuously evolved. Inevitably today’s media formats will, in turn, become tomorrow’s digital dust collectors. Make future media conversions simpler by storing your files in clearly-labelled folders on your computer and ensuring they are backed up on a cloud storage service or an external hard drive. Better still, do both.

'Homo' who? A new mystery human species has been discovered in Israel

Yossi ZaidnerAn international group of archaeologists have discovered a missing piece in the story of human evolution.Excavations at the Israeli site ...

US scheme used by Australian farmers reveals the dangers of trading soil carbon to tackle climate change

ShutterstockSoil carbon is in the spotlight in Australia. A key plank in the Morrison government’s technology-led emissions reduction policy, it...

We found traces of humanity's age-old arms race with coronaviruses written in our DNA

NIAID-RML, CC BY-SAA coronavirus may have swept across East Asia more than 20,000 years ago, leaving traces in the DNA of people in modern China, Japa...

The sentencing of George Floyd’s killer has lessons for policing in Australia and New Zealand too

www.shutterstock.comThe imminent sentencing of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin for the 2020 murder of George Floyd will be closely wat...

Australia's media industry shed 5,000 journalists to survive – what does this mean for those who left, and those left behind?

Lukas Coch/AAPIn the 2000s, the internet shredded the media’s business model. The media’s influence fragmented and many employees paid the...

We found more than 54,000 viruses in people's poo — and 92% were previously unknown to science

ShutterstockResearch published today in Nature Microbiology has identified 54,118 species of virus living in the human gut — 92% of which were p...

Novavax is absent from Australia's 2021 vaccination schedule. But it could be a useful booster later on

Novavax recently released excellent results from phase 3 clinical trials, finding its COVID-19 vaccine demonstrated 90.4% efficacy overall after two d...

Podcasting overcomes hurdles facing unis to immerse students in the world of workers' experiences

ShutterstockPodcasting is helping to revolutionise tertiary education. Universities have found themselves caught between shrinking budgets and an offi...

rethinking the myth of Daphne, a woman who chooses eternal silence over sexual assault

Gian Lorenzo Bernini's Apollo and Daphne, made between 1622 and 1625.Stefano Chiacchiarini/ShutterstockAncient Greek myths and folktales are shaping p...

COVID has disrupted our big cities, and regional planning has to catch up fast

Blaine O'Neill/Flickr, CC BY-NCSince the 1950s, the world has experienced a sixfold increase in the number of people living in cities. City dwellers n...

Australia's handling of the pandemic ranked more accountable than most, but not perfect

Governments worldwide spent more than US$14 trillion fighting the health and economic effects of the coronavirus in 2020, much of it very quickly.Amon...

how to halve serious injuries and deaths from teenage driving accidents

ShutterstockTeenage drivers are a risky bunch. They are inexperienced and don’t always drive carefully, sometimes with tragic consequences. Vari...

Holidays & Travel

6 Tips To Have the Best Kayaking Experience in Sydney

Without a doubt, Sydney is an incredible place to be. If you are one of the 4.6 million people living in the most iconic city in Australia, you are lucky...

Six Things Every Real Otaku Must Do in this Life

Once you watch anime, there is no going back. They are awesome and take everything to a level where you can’t control your emotions. Anime is a cartoon and it’s...

Experiencing the Rocky Mountain Railroad

You can go onboard on Rocky Mountaineer, which is a luxury train ride that can give you the best views and sceneries across the Canadian Rockies. The views will take...

Post-COVID Bucket List: Best Tips to Plan a Grand Trip Around Australasia

It might be some time before we’re able to travel the world like we used to without fear of ending up stranded in a country that’s just instated another lockdown...

Unexpectedly Awesome Destinations for Single Travelers

Are you ready to finally travel? If you’re fully vaccinated, you might have a shot (pun not intended) to explore the world in 2021. However, if you’re single and without...

The Right Choice For A Holiday Rental Accommodation

When people think of Tasmania, they seldom think of an attractive vacation destination. Most people's first association with this island is the infamous Tasmanian Devil, the marsupial popularized in Looney...

What to Pack in a Carry-On vs Checked Bag

If you are a potential home buyer traveling to check out Memphis houses for sale or flying to your perfect destination for a trip of a lifetime, you may be...

Top Luxury Resorts For A Restorative Staycation In Australia

There are three main types of tourists who travel in search of wellness: those into beauty/spa-type treatments, those after the ultimate luxury lifestyle, and those who are into spiritual retreats...

7 Bucket-List Worthy Experiences in Dubai

“You only live once.” These words – often abbreviated into the sensational catchphrase “YOLO” – have become more popular with the millennial generation. But this is hardly a new idea. In...

Fashion & Beauty

Painting like a pro: how to properly apply nail polish

First thing’s first: DO NOT start painting until you have purchased high quality nail polish. Sure, you may be tempted to pick up a cheap option from your local chemist...

Raincoats Outfit Inspiration

Even if we are still in the midst of summer, it’s not too early to start planning your Autumn/Winter wardrobe - and your apparel is, without a doubt, the cornerstone...

Choosing between comfort & style – the perennial dilemma

Our range of tradie work wear online combines the best of both When it comes to clothing, there is usually a trade-off that needs to be made between what is comfortable...

5 Things to Check When Looking for Workwear Pants

Workwear Pants are different from regular pants as they are made with tough materials and come with additional features enabling you to perform your work comfortably all day. A wide...

How Jewelry Trends Are Changing in 2021

The first quarter of 2021 is already over, and we're beginning to ease back into a bit of normality in some areas of our lives. With vaccine rollouts starting to...

Best Women's Footwear Fashion For 2021

Your footwear is one of the first things people notice about you. Wearing elegant shoes can help elevate your look and create a good first impression. Vintage footwear will always...



NewsServices.com

Content & Technology Connecting Global Audiences

More Information - Less Opinion