I have a bunch of VHS tapes I'd like to finally throw away but I want to archive many of them. Ultimately I'd like them to end up as H.264 files for playback on a media center computer.
I'm scratching my head about the simplest way to go about it, short of just straight video capture to the computer. I wonder if there's a way to leverage the cheap cost of VHS/DVD Recorder or VHS/harddisk recorder units for this purpose. Since VHS/DVD Recorder combos make it easy to "hit record and forget" converting a 2-hour VHS tape to DVD/MPEG2, I have thought of the following workflow:
1) I.e. buying 3-5 VHS/DVD Recorder combo units (i.e. next time they go on sale)
2) Recording VHS -> DVD-RW discs
3) Ripping the MPEG2 from DVD-RW discs on my existing computers that already have 5 DVD-RW drives per computer, and either keeping the MPEG2 files or converting them in a second step to H.264?
This multi-step process makes it much lengthier than I'd like, but bottom line is I'd need to buy several VCR's anyway so having a combo unit might save me from investment in standalone VHS plus video capture cards.
Does anyone know of an easier way, or if a set-top player that combines a VHS with harddisk or USB flash storage (or god forbid PC-linkable VHS combo player) exists to simplify my workflow?
Any info appreciated - thanks guys!