It's natural to capture and preserve all the memories that come with the passing of time. Luckily, technology keeps pace with us, enabling us to record these priceless moments. Still, we wonder "will I ever be able to relive my old memories now that VHS players are hard to find, not to mention obsolete?" Thankfully, with the help of video transfer services, there is still hope! However, we understand that there are some things to consider before trusting such a service.
1. Range of Services
One obvious point to consider is the type of home movies you have. There are so many different kinds that it may get confusing if you're not an expert. VHS, VHS-C, Beta, MiniDV, Hi8, 8MM, Digital8, MicroMV, and PAL are just a few formats that all require different instruments to convert. Make sure the service you select can safely transfer your desired formats.
2. Safety is Standard
It's important to make sure your memories are in good hands and that they won't get lost while being digitally converted. A few providers offer order tracking - upon the receipt of all orders, every item is immediately cataloged and tagged with a barcode. The customer is then notified through each step so she always knows where her precious memories are in the process. Your order should also be assigned a tracking number once it's mailed back to you.
3. Made in the USA
Some services outsource the digitization of your precious memories to India or other foreign countries, without telling you. It may be worth selecting a provider who processes your items in the United States so you're not shipping them overseas, adding another step to their journey where they could get lost or damaged.
4. Customer Reviews
Customer Reviews are a great way to gauge the quality of service the company you're considering has provided in the past. Customer reviews can often be found on the company's website, Facebook page, or by a quick online search. If the reviews are overwhelmingly positive, odds are that you're in good hands.
5. Trusted Business
Look for "qualifiers" when researching video transfer services. For example, have any big brands used them, have they been around for more than a few years, do they seem experienced in the industry, overall does their site look professional and trustworthy.
6. Digitized File Type
Another item to consider is the output format that you prefer for your recorded moments. There are many options: DVDs, Blu-Ray Discs, flash drives or external hard drives (with different formats to choose from, such as MP4, MOV, AVI and others...). Make sure the digitized file type will work for you. It's also worth noting that a few companies are now offering cloud-based storage for your memories, which could be a good option as it can be accessed from anywhere.
Even though the average lifespan of a videotape is limited (it's only 15 years!), you can rest assured that you will still be able to enjoy your past moments. These 6 guidelines should help you pick the best video transfer service, so you can have peace of mind that your memories will stand the test of time!