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Monthly Archives: October 2012

Video 8 to DVD

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The Emailer

The Emailer

Did you know that there are 3 different 8mm video formats? The first to come along was Video8 around 1985.

It became popular because the cameras were much smaller as were the tapes and the quality is a little better than VHS. Later came Hi8 and after that Digital8. As the format changed and progressed, it moved towards the digital age. Do you know where it gets it’s name from? The magnetic tape is 8mm wide, the same width as the earlier Super8 film.

The good news is, Advanced Media LLC transfers all 3 formats to DVD for the same price. We have a new player which is capable of playing all 3. Believe it or not, it’s one of our top requests, next to VHS and VHSC. Generally people want to go to DVD but sometimes they need files for editing and we provide that as well.

The cost to go to DVD is $25/tape. We do offer discounts for volume. 10% off for 10 tapes or more and the more tapes you have the better the discount. If you need files stored on your hard drive, that process known as digitizing will run you $35/tape and you will have a file which is a higher quality than the DVD. To find out more, please contact us here.

Video Services

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The VHS Family

The VHS Family

From time to time we get a video which is beyond help so I’d like to write a little bit about what repairs can and cannot be made to an ailing tape.

First I’ll go over the repairs that we can make. If your tape is severed or detached from the hub, we can repair it. If the housing is damaged, we can repair that or replace the housing. If the door is broken or completely missing, you may not even need a repair because the tape will most likely play without one, especially if it’s VHS.

Other problems may be difficult or impossible to fix. If you have a lot of static or the audio is muffled, that may be the case. The important thing to note is that each tape is a unique snowflake and so is each player. The same tape may play in one player but not the other or it may look fine in one machine but it may have issues in another deck. That’s why we have multiple decks so I can test a tape in several ways in order to trouble shoot the problem.

Sometimes, there is nothing I can do. Other times, it may be a matter of hooking up some other hardware to get louder volume or a piece of equipment that fixes the color. Other times, I can find a software based solution. At any rate, we really work hard to preserve the quality and the integrity of your precious home movies. If a tape can be repaired, fixed or enhanced, we can do it. Please contact us for more information. Thanks for reading. (323) 469-0707

Vinyl Transfers

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I myself am a collector and a lover of vinyl records. I am a fan of analog sounds.

They are warm and they are their own type of sound. I personally think it’s better than digital recordings that we’re hearing everywhere these days via highly compressed formats like mp3. From time to time customers do request vinyl transfers to CD. I capture each side of a record individually. I can also select just the song you want and no other. There are of course some limitations to vinyl. If it gets dirty or scratched it can skip or you may hear the crackles and pops as the needle travels between the grooves.

I’ve always thought there was something magical about this technology that never quite made sense to me. How does the needle transmit the sound from some grooves in vinyl? I may never know. Many audio geeks will tell you that they love the sound of the pops and the crackling because it reminds them of being near a fire. However, in the transfer process, every little spec of dust has the potential to mess up the recording and to become embedded in the track. So when I get some records together, I have to clean them thoroughly before transferring.

Sometimes the result is less than amazing depending mainly on the condition of the record itself. Other times, it’s nothing short of fantastic. I don’t think I’ll ever give up my old record collection. There’s too many memories in there. Too many lovely poems from yesteryear set to a tune that my body can understand intuitively, the language of sound. For more info, contact us here.

Youtube or Vimeo?

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There are a variety of ways to share your video with the world these days.

One of which is to upload it to youtube. That way you can send a link to your high quality footage to whoever you want to share it with or you can post it on other sites such as Facebook. But there is another site that is quickly gaining momentum in the film world and that is Vimeo.

There’s something just a little more slick about the feel of the site. There’s a lot less silly fodder that misguided amateurs ply the web with that no one but themselves finds interesting. It’s a more professional site in general and I found out about it because several of my editor and film friends were using it to share video with clients. Contact us with any questions.

Eight Hundred Dollars Cash

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Recently I was transferring a collection of ancient VHS to DVD when I got quite a shock.

I was about half way through the order and I was on the line with a customer when I removed a tape from it’s box. A little white envelope popped out and landed on the floor. I thought nothing of it and I continued my conversation. I rewound the tape and brought it to the proper machine when I noticed peeking out a speck of green at the corner of the envelope. When I picked it up I noticed several large bills there. Counting it up, it turns out it was $800 in one hundred dollar bills, the old ones.

I finished up with the customer on the phone and I pocketed the cash, wondering how I would spend it when the realization hit me that I had to return the money. I was shocked and saddened by the thought of returning all that cash. Hadn’t I found it fair and square? Not so when I looked at the facts. The tape belonged to a customer. It had been in her possession all these years. The magnetic tape held the memories of a time long ago, of a life ever changing and I had no right to it whatsoever. So I called a friend for advice.

I said, “What would you do?” And in a matter of fact tone he said, “I’d call the customer and let her know that you found $400!” He began to laugh uproariously and then he put in, “In all seriousness, you’ve got to return the whole wad.” And so I did. I called the customer up and I told her that I had found something shocking in her belongings. She did not ask what it was but she said she would be right over when I told her it was a wad of cash.

She pulled up about an hour later and I handed over the cash and let her know that the job would be ready for pick up the following day. She counted the cash and she peeled off a crisp old hundred dollar bill and handed it to me. I was quite elated really. She thanked me again the following day when she picked up her job and I got a feeling like you wouldn’t believe from the experience. This story is not to brag or to boast but to tell of a real life event which occurred recently that I learned a life lesson from. When I pass a mirror, I can look myself in the eye and know that I truly am honest even when it comes to money! And as long as I can live an honest life and try my best, I’ve literally got nothing to worry about. I’ve been walking on sunshine for weeks since this $800 cash landed in my lap. It’s all about self image really. And I’ve never regretted the decision, not for a second.

DV to DVD

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One of the specialty formats we transfers is DV, also known as Mini DV or HDV and even DVCam.

They all belong to the same family and they can all go to DVD or files on your hard drive. First of all, DV stands for digital video. The process is pretty simple going to DVD. I select the correct deck or player. That gets hooked up with the best connection possible for that deck. In the case of DV for example, I have a DVD recorder that has the option for Firewire, which I use because it will ensure a high quality transfer. In the case of the HDV, I use the SDI connection which is a very good connection when going to the computer to create files. This is a specialty format and if you aren’t sure if this is what you have, it’s a pretty small tape. We do charge $10 more for HDV tapes which are High Definition because it requires using a pretty valuable deck. The only way to know if you have HD or SD tape is if you know what it was shot on. That’s because you can shoot HD or SD footage on these tapes and it all depends on your camera. Also, if you’re not sure you can bring it in and we’ll have a look for you. Any further questions should be addressed here. Thanks for reading. (323) 469-0707

16 Film To Video

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Everybody knows we transfer Super8 and 8mm film to HD files but not everyone knows we also handle 16mm.

This format is a little more rare but we do come across it from time to time. Back in the day, it was actually a professional grade film used in low budget projects because it was cheaper than 35 and the resolution was still quite good. It’s called 16mm because it’s 16mm’s wide and the picture can be absolutely amazing. A lot of people ask me I think that transferring movies like this is even possible. Most often, it’s entirely possible and I have had a lot of customers who are amazed with the results. They look better than anything you’ve got on VHS or most camcorders. Remember film, is infinitely better than most of these formats as far as quality and resolution is concerned. For more on 16mm film transfers or conversions to DVD, please contact us here. (323) 469-0707

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