Those old home videos, especially the ones from back in 1980, are not getting better, only older and more decrepit.  They are, literally, falling apart, even if only about seven years old.  Wouldn’t you like to get them off that deteriorating tape (even 8mm) and onto DVD where your grandchildren can see them?

You might have thought it would be difficult and expensive, but it is not.  Now, from Pinnacle Systems, a name well regarded in the pro arena, comes the perfect simple-to-use and inexpensive product to turn those old videos into DVD.  Let’s make this a simple as the product I am recommending!


At only $200, Pinnacle Studio MovieBox (USB or DV) has everything needed to capture your old videos and, if desired, perform professional quality editing – titling, scene transitions and fast or slow motion.  After the video is the way you want it, or even in its original form without any changes, it can be burned onto DVD or CD and then viewed on your DVD player. As you probably know, DVD burners are available for retrofit or as standard equipment on an increasing number of new computers, including laptops.  Sounds simple, doesn’t it?  Well, it is.

The Pinnacle Studio MovieBox product for Windows PCs comes with either a FireWire (IEEE 1394) connection to the computer (the DV model) or a USB connection, depending upon what you want or need, based upon the computer to which it is to be connected.

Connections are easy – from the video and audio out on the old camcorder or VCR to the MovieBox, and from the MovieBox to the computer via USB cable or FireWire, depending upon the version of the product you have.

I know, you’re saying it just sounds too simple and it must be more difficult than it appears.  Really, it is not.  Sure, it takes time to do all the clicking through an entire tape, but it is NOT complicated.  Sure, it takes some time to get to know the features and fun things that can be done in editing your old tapes.  Of course, you can always do as I have done with many of my own tapes.  That is, simply transfer them faults and all, to DVD or to Video CD.  DVD is the best quality, but transferring an old VHS tape to Video CD there is not a great loss in quality.  VHS was never that good anyway.

Not only can the final product be burned onto DVD or Video CD, it can be streamed in RealVideo8 or Windows Streaming Media and saved in AVI format.

The way I see it, this is another great Father’s Day gift.  Get Pinnacle Studio MovieBox and install the software on either Dad’s or another computer.  Then, pick a favorite old family tape or a few of them, and transfer the cutest shots showing dear ol’ dad at his best.  Make an “I love you, dad” video, burned onto DVD if you have it or Video CD, which can be created on any CD burner.  Then, surprise dad with the movie creation and the Pinnacle Studio MovieBox product as a double-whammy gift.  He’s going to love it!

If you already have the capture mechanism built into your computer or some other means to get the signal into your computer, then you might just want to buy the Pinnacle STUDIO 8 software, $75.

MovieBox works with VHS, S-VHS, 8mm, and Hi8 tape formats.  The software works with the old formats and the newer DV format.

Both MovieBox with STUDIO 8, and STUDIO 8 alone are available through all major retail channels including, Best Buy, J&R and CompUSA.  For more information, visit

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