View Full Version : Exporting to VHS to get that 80s TV look

Joe Stas
03-13-2014, 04:19 AM
I know this has been covered a few times but I'm looking for a specific solution.

I have some HD footage that I've edited in 4:3 that I want to look like it's come from the 80s. I don't want it necessarily to look like crap in that it's 25 minutes long and the effect will wear tiresome after a while. So ideally I'd like it to look like a 'semi-clean' VHS transfer... if such a thing exists :)

I'd rather do it by transferring to a VHS than using effects, although I have got a decent 'look' in AE. What methods would you use to transfer to VHS and back? Just want to consider different solutions!

Thanks for your time!

Michael Carter
03-13-2014, 01:11 PM
Many of the blackmagic & Matrox video cards have analog jacks. If you're using one for monitoring, check it out, should have the yellow RCA jack. Just plug that in to a VHS deck and record it.

Then come from the VCR output back into the card. Blackmagic intensity is $175. There are consumer USB products that are made for transferring old tapes to digital, but I don't know if any of those have video out. Check Amazon and see what's in the consumer realm, might get lucky.

The old DVX cameras had analog out, don't know about in.

03-13-2014, 01:52 PM
Alternatively get a cheap "digital8" or miniDV camera, output to that and capture back. Or just compress it as miniDV, make sure it is interlace. Potentially dump one field. To most eyes will look like crap, old video.

03-13-2014, 02:46 PM
If you are familiar with Avisynth you can use scripts to create VHS effects without having to dig up an old tape deck. You can even tweak the strengths of the effects if you understand what you are doing in the scripting language: