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VHS Tapes

Movie viewers in the 1970's, 1980's, and 1990's remember the days of watching their favorite movies on Video Home Systems ("VHS"). While this format has been discontinued, many users still have blank tapes as well as their favorite movies on the VHS standard. Many enjoy VHS collectibles and memorabilia from these eras.

What is the history of the VHS standard?

The release of VHS movies began in the USA during 1977, one year after Japan started using the format during 1976. The system initially had some competition from the Betamax standard but became the dominant standard around 1980. For the next two decades, this standard was the preferred choice for home viewers. In 1997, the DVD format began to replace VHS systems. The very last VHS to be manufactured was in July of 2016 by the Funai Company of Japan. Because some movies and shows are only available on the VHS standard; the players are still in many homes. This allows the VHS legacy to continue.

How do you record shows on blank VHS tapes?

If you want to record some of your favorite shows and movies on VHS tapes, you can still do so. You will need to do the following:

  • Attach the Recorder: The recorder will attach to the television through the output port. Set the recorder to channel three, and change the input source to the recorder.
  • Insert a Tape: After tuning the recorder to your desired channel, insert a new or used blank tape.
  • Select the Speed: You can record for up to six hours based on your selected speed. The longer time you record, the lower the quality.
  • Start Recording: When you are ready, simply press record. When you are done, you can stop the recording manually, or let it keep going. At the end of the tape, it will stop and rewind automatically.
How long will VHS tapes retain a movie's quality?

The tape's survival length depends on the storage conditions and usage. The more times a tape is recorded over, the less information it is able to retain. Most professionally made VHS movies do not allow the option for re-recording. This method preserves the movie's lifespan for the next generation. You can prolong the life of your video up to 25 years by taking the precautionary steps:

  • Keep the Tapes Clean: You will want to store the VHS tapes in their original cases and away from dust, dirt, and other debris.
  • Keep the Tapes Dry: Avoid storing VHS tapes in humid areas or near liquids. The ideal temperature for storage is approximately 62 degrees F.
  • Keep them Tapes Stable: Make sure they aren't exposed to large temperature swings. A climate-controlled location is ideal for good protection.
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