Convert precious videos to DVD

A PERTH company is providing a new service to convert VHS tapes to DVD.

DVD Solutions is the only DVD authoring service in Perth, says owner and operator Steve Ramm.

The company is mainly targeting the entertainment industry, but also companies wanting to keep old corporate productions and individuals needing copies of old home movies and weddings.

As bass guitarist and vocalist for various cover bands during the 1970s and 1980s, Mr Ramm has one of three video clips made of his performances. The others are lost forever.

Mr Ramm said many bands and performers could use the service to avoid this.

“Converting video (or film) to DVD requires a long list of computer hardware, software, plug-ins and megabits – it’s not just a simple dump,” Mr Ramm said.

“I need to ensure there are no sound drop-outs and repair visual glitches, so there’s a lot of tweaking involved.

“The business has not only purchased a broadcast quality BetaSP system as well as miniDV, a $6,500 VHS/SVHS playback VCR and 3/4 Umatic machines, but also a sophisticated enhancer ensuring the highest picture and sound quality possible for the converting of very old tapes.

“We’ve also bought a camera for recording extra content to make the DVD truly interactive. It has cost nearly $100,000 to set up the studio.”

DVD Solutions’ rates start at $167 for a 15-minute conversion. Editing time for interactive content and a menu-type front page starts at $120 per hour. The company also has the facilities for custom on-disc printing designs.

Mr Ramm said these prices were not hefty considering the cost of the equipment and expertise required to author DVDs of a high standard.

“I’ve heard of eastern states companies charging $1,200 for a 60 minute transfer,” he said.

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