Archiving Video

Don't Throw out Your Home Videos!

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DVD's, as wonderful as they are to use, are not archival. As a Result, any home video that you transfer to DVD does not mean you can throw away the original! As explained on the DVD page of this forum, DVD's incorporate extreme compression when converting the original video signal to DVD, so even though the image can look as good as the original, it becomes an ineffectual task to try and then use that DVD as a new video format from which to edit from. Additionally, DVD's can EASILY be damaged and no longer play. Sometimes using the correct type of DVD cleaning cloth will give the DVD new life, however it should then be replicated as soon as possible.

Confusion has been created with the advent of consumer DVD duplication. Consumers mistakenly believe that the DVD's they make or have made by the local DVD duplication expert of their own home videos are of equal quality to the kind that Hollywood makes for it's movies. Hollywood happily enjoys being able to make a superior DVD product from a technical point of view than anyone else because uses a technique called DVD Replication versus DVD duplication. Replications only make sense once someone is ordering close to a thousand DVDs. Unless you need a thousand DVDs of your home video collection, you can only get DVD duplication, which will never last as long or be as durable as a Hollywood DVD Replication.

Videotape Formats are being phased out even though there is no true replacement for them. Perhaps the ideal scenario will be shooting directly onto computer harddrives, or flash cards, but unlike videotape, these formats can fail in an instant and leave the end user with nothing. Technologies of the future that record directly to a solid state card are at the moment very expensive, but eventually they should come down in price. But will they also heavily compress video and in the end be a false recording option as well? Time will tell.

The same advantages Hollywood enjoys over the consumer when it comes to DVD creation will no doubt exist once a new replacement mastering format is finally agreed upon. In the meantime, the public is being hobbled by dozens and dozens and dozens more of video formats to choose from, and the odds that all of these formats will have any type of longevity is remote.

This Dave Riddle Documentary was stored 10 YEARS!
Longevity of VideoTape Formats is misunderstood

There are presently no true recording mediums other than videotape that one can assume will record an existing home video at full uncompressed quality and also will be guaranteed to be around for more than a few years. Customers who have called several years later are thrilled to discover their betacam sp edit master has been successfully archived and can be accessed for additional work!

Slingshot Productions uses reliable video editing equipment to maintain the highest quality standard. Additionally, Slingshot Productions archives all of it's masters on BetaCam Sp, long recognized as a broadcast and archhival mastering format. Since 1994, Slingshot Productions has been mastering to Betacam SP resulting in a video standard that even 13 years later is still better than most digital tape formats, and a hardier format as well. All Videotape Analog Formats can be remastered to Betacam Sp which helps prevent all of those crazy editing compression codecs that continue to plague many editing projects that have incorporated several different sources of digital and analog videotape formats.

The Future

Perhaps by the year 2010 recordable solid state card technology will ease the current lack of a true archiving format for the consumer. Until then, it might be wise to hang onto your video tape and family film heirlooms. DVD duplication is NOT a viable archival replacement for your film and video home movies.