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(IT World)   Wait - 55% of Americans still have VCRs?   (itworld.com) divider line 115
    More: Interesting, VCRs, Americans, Ces, Next Big Thing, Consumer Electronics Association, Neilsen, electronic media, DVRs  
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2476 clicks; posted to Geek » on 10 Jan 2013 at 7:54 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-01-10 09:58:27 AM

Gunny Walker: VCRs are great for kids.

1.) Grab the purple tape.
2.) Push it into the VCR.
3.) Watch
4.) If it ends, go to step 2.

Can't do that with a DVR or DVD.


No, but smart phones and tablets beat VCRs. My daughter could navigate stored movies and Netflix before she could read.
 
2013-01-10 10:00:04 AM

yukichigai: Gunny Walker: VCRs are great for kids.

1.) Grab the purple tape.
2.) Push it into the VCR.
3.) Watch
4.) If it ends, go to step 2.

Can't do that with a DVR or DVD.

I actually used to make KVCDs and CVDs specifically for people with kids. Structure the disc right and all you have to do is pop it in the DVD player and hit the play button. Best part is that cartoons and such encode rather well; you can't really spot the quality difference between DVD on a standard def TV.


Most kid's DVDs now have autoplay functions. You pop in the DVD, and it automatically goes to the "play all" selection for episode compilations, or just launches into the movie after a few moments. Besides, my 7 and 6 year old know how to use the remotes. When they are watching something before bed, I'm usually writing or doing some work, so it helps to have interruptions at a minimum.

That said, I decided to get rid of our VCR and VHS stuff about two years ago. My parents almost had a stroke when I told them I was doing this. I told them that I had gotten a new DVD player (a year later, a Blu-Ray player with WiFi replaced it), and that if I liked any of my VHS movies enough to watch them over and over again, I'd get them on DVD. I discovered that only a few films made the transition.
 
2013-01-10 10:01:11 AM
There's one built into the front of my vintage-2005 TV. Just plugged a tape into it and it works perfectly. Also has a DVD player built into the front, which also works perfectly.

Bought my previous TV in 1984, so not anticipating replacing this one any time soon.
 
2013-01-10 10:06:30 AM

wxboy: How many people still listen to audio cassette tapes?


How many people still listen to CDs?
 
2013-01-10 10:07:19 AM

whizbangthedirtfarmer: yukichigai: Gunny Walker: VCRs are great for kids.

1.) Grab the purple tape.
2.) Push it into the VCR.
3.) Watch
4.) If it ends, go to step 2.

Can't do that with a DVR or DVD.

I actually used to make KVCDs and CVDs specifically for people with kids. Structure the disc right and all you have to do is pop it in the DVD player and hit the play button. Best part is that cartoons and such encode rather well; you can't really spot the quality difference between DVD on a standard def TV.

Most kid's DVDs now have autoplay functions. You pop in the DVD, and it automatically goes to the "play all" selection for episode compilations, or just launches into the movie after a few moments. Besides, my 7 and 6 year old know how to use the remotes. When they are watching something before bed, I'm usually writing or doing some work, so it helps to have interruptions at a minimum.

That said, I decided to get rid of our VCR and VHS stuff about two years ago. My parents almost had a stroke when I told them I was doing this. I told them that I had gotten a new DVD player (a year later, a Blu-Ray player with WiFi replaced it), and that if I liked any of my VHS movies enough to watch them over and over again, I'd get them on DVD. I discovered that only a few films made the transition.


That's a welcome change from how it was years ago. I remember getting quite a few requests to "work my magic" on DVDs so that parents and antsy children didn't have to sit through 25 minutes of unskippable trailers and promos before the main film was selectable.

With as insistent as the movie industry seemed to be when it came to keeping that "feature" in DVD releases, I would have thought it would always been a "feature" of children's video releases.
 
2013-01-10 10:11:55 AM

bark_atda_moon: wxboy: How many people still listen to audio cassette tapes?

How many people still listen to CDs?


I do.  I'm sick of the compression.  I like CD better than streaming compressed junk.  Of course I'm now re-encoding full bit streams so it doesn't matter but the stuff I scanned years ago sucks compared to the real CDs.
 
2013-01-10 10:13:30 AM

yukichigai: whizbangthedirtfarmer: yukichigai: Gunny Walker: VCRs are great for kids.

1.) Grab the purple tape.
2.) Push it into the VCR.
3.) Watch
4.) If it ends, go to step 2.

Can't do that with a DVR or DVD.

I actually used to make KVCDs and CVDs specifically for people with kids. Structure the disc right and all you have to do is pop it in the DVD player and hit the play button. Best part is that cartoons and such encode rather well; you can't really spot the quality difference between DVD on a standard def TV.

Most kid's DVDs now have autoplay functions. You pop in the DVD, and it automatically goes to the "play all" selection for episode compilations, or just launches into the movie after a few moments. Besides, my 7 and 6 year old know how to use the remotes. When they are watching something before bed, I'm usually writing or doing some work, so it helps to have interruptions at a minimum.

That said, I decided to get rid of our VCR and VHS stuff about two years ago. My parents almost had a stroke when I told them I was doing this. I told them that I had gotten a new DVD player (a year later, a Blu-Ray player with WiFi replaced it), and that if I liked any of my VHS movies enough to watch them over and over again, I'd get them on DVD. I discovered that only a few films made the transition.

That's a welcome change from how it was years ago. I remember getting quite a few requests to "work my magic" on DVDs so that parents and antsy children didn't have to sit through 25 minutes of unskippable trailers and promos before the main film was selectable.

With as insistent as the movie industry seemed to be when it came to keeping that "feature" in DVD releases, I would have thought it would always been a "feature" of children's video releases.


Oh yes, it is much better. I used to rip DVDs, too, but then about three years back, I noticed a lot of Disney DVDs started advertising "FastPlay." It looks like the rest of the industry (except Nick DVDs) have followed suit. The kid has to sit through some previews sometimes, but the DVD starts on its own if you do nothing on the main menu. Quite helpful.
 
2013-01-10 10:31:37 AM

bark_atda_moon: wxboy: How many people still listen to audio cassette tapes?

How many people still listen to CDs?


Every day. I have a few hundred CDs of mainly classical, new acoustic and jazz that sound beautiful through my stereo system, and pretty decent in the car. For longer trips we fill a 50-CD travel case with some favs and hit the road. Why would I not listen to them?
 
2013-01-10 10:39:57 AM
I just bought a used replacement VCR to replace a 13 year old VCR that was dying, only to realize it's my 3 year old Plasma TV's inputs or something that's dying. Both VCRs apparently work fine, despite their age.

But, yeah: We have a ton of Disney Classics and such on VHS. It works. The kiddies don't complain about the resolution or mono sound.

And we buy music digitally and often burn it to CD. Just more convenient than dealing with the "Whoops - left my iPod at home" and "Whoops - left my iPod at work" and "Whoops - someone stole my iPod." MP3 CDs are sorta cool. But then, I used to record 8-Track Tapes in the 80s on my SoundDesign all-in-one stereo from K-Mart.

At least I don't listen to vinyl records or cassettes anymore...
 
2013-01-10 10:40:51 AM
The husby and I just bought a VHS player and Laserdisk player, and we're trying to find a Betamax player to replace the one that got ripped out of the vintage TV console we got a few weeks ago. We both like older tech since it's fun to play with, and there are a bunch of movies in each format that weren't released in later formats, so we're hunting them down.

/Over 300 laserdisks.
//Including the Collector's Edition Star Wars.
///Slashies
 
2013-01-10 10:43:14 AM
I have 1 vhs in the closet that hasn't been used in years. I have a Laser Disc player that I do use occasionally because there are still things available on LD you can't buy on DVD/Bluray. Mainly concerts are what I get on LD. I keep the VHS around because I have a VHS camera and should I ever need to film something... since I am not a picture/filmer type I can't justify buying a modern camera
 
2013-01-10 10:48:56 AM
Amazing how some people are amazed that other people don't throw out their AV equipment and collections every year and start over.
 
2013-01-10 10:51:05 AM
Ah - but how many of you have an RCA CED video disc player? Or an Elcaset?
 
2013-01-10 10:55:57 AM
I still have an 8 track tape player.  Kachunk.
 
2013-01-10 11:05:46 AM

Gunny Walker: VCRs are great for kids.

1.) Grab the purple tape.
2.) Push it into the VCR.
3.) Watch
4.) If it ends, go to step 2.

Can't do that with a DVR or DVD.


Exactly. A two year old can master watching a VCR. You just have to keep the PB&J out of them.
 
2013-01-10 11:09:07 AM

Jodeo: The kiddies don't complain about the resolution or mono sound.


A friend gave me his old super VHS player years ago, I believe it was the reason for the s-video cable. Anyway I was surprised by the picture quality, it is really sharp.
 
2013-01-10 11:12:35 AM
I actually bought a NEW VCR last year. It is a combo DVD player/recorder too. The thing is I have a collectors edition Star Wars Trilogy (letter boxed) from 1996 in there. It is the ORIGINAL Star Wars unadulterated. It has 10 minute interviews with George Lucas before each film. Han shoots first in this one. The video quality is absolutely impeccable. My kids and I have watched this trilogy on those tapes maybe 300 times in the last 15 years. I did this by throwing out the purple dinosaur videos when kid 1 got to age 3. I substituted Star Wars. They watch them over and over and over again. If I'm going to be subjected to repetitive watching I want it to be something not involving a purple dinosaur. You know what? The video never wore out. It still plays like it just came out of the box. Disney movies wear out after about viewing number 20 because they are made with inferior materials. Whereas this trilogy lasts forever. The picture quality is simply remarkable. My wife bought them as a present back then and paid $75 for them. That's about $150 in today's money. Well worth it. I now have the Blue Ray collection but frankly I still prefer the original.
 
2013-01-10 11:18:48 AM

Tyrone Slothrop: I do; I need it while I'm transferring all my video tapes to dvd.


Yeah I just started on that project. For one I've got to make sure my VHS copies of the 1980 USA vs USSR and USA vs Finland olympic hockey games survive. I still have not done enough research to figure out what card to buy but for $7 bucks I bought one of the cheap chinese usb adapters. Seems to work OK. What do you use?
 
2013-01-10 11:19:51 AM
We have one. My wife keeps insisting that she is going to "watch those old tapes" that she recorded, so I have to keep hooking it up to our new equipment as I get it. Last time she actually watched  one was probably 1995. Eventually I suppose the analog inputs on new equipment will go away and there will be trouble. I am too lazy to digitize all that old stuff.
 
2013-01-10 11:58:11 AM

rwfan: Tyrone Slothrop: I do; I need it while I'm transferring all my video tapes to dvd.

Yeah I just started on that project. For one I've got to make sure my VHS copies of the 1980 USA vs USSR and USA vs Finland olympic hockey games survive. I still have not done enough research to figure out what card to buy but for $7 bucks I bought one of the cheap chinese usb adapters. Seems to work OK. What do you use?


Let me rephrase that question. Does anyone have experience/recommendations on video capture adapters? An adapter seems like the best approach to me because you can archive your stuff any way you want (online, dvd, big honkin hard drive,...)
 
2013-01-10 12:07:00 PM
VHS tapes are great for young children. You can buy them cheap at thrift stores - sometimes Disney movies for as little as 25 cents - and more importantly, compared to DVDs they are practically indestructible. DVDs get scratched and dirty so easily when kids handle them.
 
2013-01-10 12:23:14 PM
I have a VHS/TV combo.. I use it for a few movies. Some movies look and sound 'right' on VHS.

Examples: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, The Land Before Time, The Matrix (VHS-ified video works so WELL for this movie.)
 
2013-01-10 12:24:51 PM
I got shelves of my favorite movies on VHS

Just yesterday I was discussing buyin a DVD-VCR combination unit because there are about 90 VHS tapes here and some are unique (not available on DVD).

Option B: use a service to transfer as many of the unique ones to DVD as possible. But those are $$$$
 
2013-01-10 12:25:05 PM

Tyrone Slothrop: I do; I need it while I'm transferring all my video tapes to dvd.


That's like transferring all your 8mm home movies to Betamax.

Just get a large HD and put all of your VHS movies on it. Hell, get two and RAID them so your VHS video files never become corrupt.
 
2013-01-10 12:31:36 PM

yukichigai: For newer stuff, it's kind of a crapshoot. You're better off buying something "professional" rather than consumer, since consumer-grade VCRs started being made with entirely too much plastic, even pieces that really really really should've been metal. To that end I (again) recommend JVC, since their professional grade stuff is quite affordable and well made. To save time sorting through things, try and find an SVHS VCR. 9 times out of 10 you'll be looking at the "professional" model, since SVHS had very little penetration into the consumer market. You'll also get S-Video outputs out of the whole deal, and possibly Component to boot, which can only make things look better.


Meh. This is mostly stuff recorded off the air in 6-hour mode, 15 to 25 years ago, so it's going to look like crap at best. Mostly, I want something that's likely to make it through a hundred or so old tapes without crapping out, so heavy-duty is more important than high-fidelity.

Thanks for the tips!
 
2013-01-10 12:32:21 PM
We have cassette tapes that we are currently converting to mp3 files. We also have vinyl records and an Edison Diamond disk hand crank record player that we use pretty frequently. Old technology doesn't mean obsolete technology.
 
2013-01-10 12:39:32 PM
Not only do I still have it, I still use it. Frequently. Given the cost of updating the wife's collection of Disney movies (amassed throughout her childhood, so mostly VHS) to a new format - DVD, Blu-Ray, or Digital, I expect that we'll keep that VHS player around for quite some time...at least until the kids are grown up.
 
2013-01-10 12:40:10 PM

LavenderWolf: Tyrone Slothrop: I do; I need it while I'm transferring all my video tapes to dvd.

That's like transferring all your 8mm home movies to Betamax.

Just get a large HD and put all of your VHS movies on it. Hell, get two and RAID them so your VHS video files never become corrupt.


In the process of doing this with my DVDs. Getting an AppleTV for Xmas (with the understanding that this is not the only device that can do this) really provided the motivation. It's pretty neat having my entire DVD collection available to watch instantly and selectable from a tablet.
 
2013-01-10 12:54:22 PM
I remember a girlfriend telling me that her family pitched in and bought their dad a VCR. I thought to myself that never in my life would I have enough spare cash to buy a VCR.
 
2013-01-10 12:54:44 PM
I have a reel-to-reel I use to watch fabulous 70s pornography
 
2013-01-10 12:55:27 PM
we have one. it's a dual dvd player/vcr, though.
 
2013-01-10 12:57:48 PM
Secret Agent X23:
We still have some tapes of stuff that we don't have on DVD, including twelve hours of Ren and Stimpy

From MuchMusic, huh?
 
2013-01-10 01:03:52 PM

wxboy: How many people still listen to audio cassette tapes?


The Protomen just released the single from their upcoming album exclusively on cassette. If you're familiar with the band and their work, it makes perfect sense and is awesome.

/No, their not hipsters
//MegaMan based, dystopian "rock opera"
///At the same time I picked up a limited release vinyl of their first album
 
2013-01-10 01:19:14 PM

No Such Agency: Secret Agent X23:
We still have some tapes of stuff that we don't have on DVD, including twelve hours of Ren and Stimpy

From MuchMusic, huh?


Actually, given to us by a friend whose kid had lost interest in it. I think he had just taped it off the broadcast.
 
2013-01-10 01:20:10 PM

CtrlAltDestroy: wxboy: How many people still listen to audio cassette tapes?

The Protomen just released the single from their upcoming album exclusively on cassette. If you're familiar with the band and their work, it makes perfect sense and is awesome.

/No, their not hipsters
//MegaMan based, dystopian "rock opera"
///At the same time I picked up a limited release vinyl of their first album


Suuuuurrrreee
 
2013-01-10 01:23:11 PM
We have two TVs and the second one has an old DVD/VCR combo hooked up to it. I don't think it works very well anymore, but it's there.
 
2013-01-10 01:38:09 PM
Bought one for three dollars to watch cable on one of these:

content.answers.com
 
2013-01-10 01:44:57 PM
Ah, statistics.

"Have" does not mean "Use"

I "have" a VCR - but hasn't been turned on in years.

I "have" 5 TVs: 1 big HD flat screen, a small flat screen (for the kids), a small CRT in the bedroom that hasn't been turned on in years either, an old portable color in the closet, and an antique console color TV.

How do I consume media? Netflix on my iPad.
 
2013-01-10 01:49:38 PM
I do. I own movies that have yet to be made available on DVD.
 
2013-01-10 02:03:55 PM
Yeah, I do. Haven't gotten around to converting my VHS copies of Super Bowl XXI, XXV and the Miracle on Ice full game broadcast to DVD yet.
 
2013-01-10 02:07:17 PM
As long as the tapes still play there's no reason to get rid of them.
 
2013-01-10 02:14:48 PM
How else can I play my Action Max?

3.bp.blogspot.com
 
2013-01-10 02:16:43 PM

Stone Meadow: bark_atda_moon: wxboy: How many people still listen to audio cassette tapes?

How many people still listen to CDs?

Every day. I have a few hundred CDs of mainly classical, new acoustic and jazz that sound beautiful through my stereo system, and pretty decent in the car. For longer trips we fill a 50-CD travel case with some favs and hit the road. Why would I not listen to them?


Most folks can fit 50 CDs worth of music on an MP3 player. I haven't used a music CD in probably a decade. Since you listen to classical music, an MP3 player won't meet your needs. For whatever reason classical music on a CD seems rather wrong as well. I can't imagine it without the hums and pops of vinyl.
 
2013-01-10 02:25:45 PM

yukichigai: I have two VHS, two SVHS, and a Betamax. One of each have no Macrovision circuits at all, hence why I keep them around. Its rare to find anything on tape that can't be purchased on DVD at least, if not Blu-Ray or digital download, but it does happen. Early episodes of MST3K spring to mind.


A lot of older stuff from the UK as well. Blake's 7 was that way, and others. I'm not sure if it ever came out in region 1 DVD.
 
2013-01-10 02:26:57 PM

Close2TheEdge: All these VCR's simply prove that there are no poor people. Fox News told me so.


I found this awesome site you might enjoy
;0
 
2013-01-10 02:27:17 PM

MorrisBird: I still have an 8 track tape player.  Kachunk.


Me too. Granted, it's in a 1969 Firebird so it fits stylistically.

The first VCR we bought in 1982 was a top-of-the-line model & cost $900.
 
2013-01-10 02:32:32 PM
I have a VCR hooked up to a coaxial-input card on my older computer. Converting VHS to .avi and DVD is one of the easiest presents you can give someone; just mention in their birthday letter that you'll do it, pick up their box of tapes, and play them to a video-recorder program on the one PC while you work on one of the newer ones in the same room. You only have to pay attention when tapes end, save the file, then put in the next tape while the first goes into the rewinder.

And yes, I still have a rewinder, too.

I've done digital-backups of old Star Wars original-cuts, family films, home movies from those huge shoulder-camcorders, and, yes, a not-inconsiderable amount of porn, DIY and otherwise. I'm in tech support, so even relatives know I can handle it. We I.T. folks are like the confessionals in a Catholic church when it comes to porn: we've heard it all before and we'll never say a word.

Though I will say, there was this one video that did kind of freak me out. H.R. Pufenstuf, I think it was called? What was up with that? I've backed up harddrives for German businessmen and never seen anything as ungodly weird as that freaky mess.
 
2013-01-10 02:55:46 PM

wxboy: How many people still listen to audio cassette tapes?


I do, at work. radio in the shop only has working tape player. So I brought in my collection. I buy tapes at thrift stores sometimes too.
 
2013-01-10 02:56:20 PM
I am the 55%.
 
2013-01-10 03:00:13 PM

bark_atda_moon: Most folks can fit 50 CDs worth of music on an MP3 player. I haven't used a music CD in probably a decade. Since you listen to classical music, an MP3 player won't meet your needs. For whatever reason classical music on a CD seems rather wrong as well. I can't imagine it without the hums and pops of vinyl.


Yeah, I probably could, but I don't see any need or even convenience. Too lazy, I guess. :)
 
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