frequently asked questions
"Do you transfer/copy/duplicate/place/put...
...Tape to Disc" (can you be more specific?)
...Tape to CD" (I think you mean DVD)
...Tape to DVD"
...Video to DVD"
...VHS to DVD"
...Home Movies to DVD"
...Reel to Reel to DVD"
...Camcorder to DVD"
...Camera to DVD"
...Film to DVD"
...Thing to Thingy"
...Whatcha-ma-call-it to something-or-other"
However you want to say it and whatever you actually want it transferred to, the answer is YES.Unless you've got some ancient egyptian relic in your hands (and possibly even if you do), we can duplicate the video onto a playback method suitable to your needs. All our transfer methods are non-destructive, and you get your original media back unharmed.
"Can you...take that out/change/alter/move/splice/fix/adjust/brighten/darken/add/remove/sprinkle/[insert adjective here]...my video?"
Yes. We can edit your video in our non-destructive systems in whatever way you wish. Your original video will remain intact and unharmed while we make changes to the copy produced in our computers. If you have a transfer request that is as simple as "stop this tape there" then editing isn't really required, your project will be processed through our regular methods and there will be no additional charge. However If we must make multiple precision adjustments to the playback or fix/manipulate the video (such as adding text or special effects) then editing is required and additional fees will apply.
"My tape/reel/disc/dvd/vhs/camera is broken/severely deteriorated/moldy/soaked in coffee/squished/smashed/generally misused/damaged by [child name here]...can you still transfer it?"
Yes...maybe. We are video wizards but not magicians. If at all possible we can splice/clean/repair/resurface/disinfect your media and transfer whatever remains to a new, more durable, medium. If your production was made by us you took advantage of our low-cost Disc On File service (which we highly recommend for exactly this reason), then we can make you a new Master from the one we have here.
"I bought a Movie/TV Show/Holiday Adventure video in [Foreign Country] and it wont play here, can you help me?"
Yes. The North American standard is NTSC and if your video doesn't play here it was likely recorded in the PAL or possibly SECAM system. We can convert your video into NTSC on a new format through our World Conversion service. More information on world TV systems can be found here.
"I want to edit this but I don't know what's on it and can I take my newly transfered video home and come back later with the changes I want?"
Yes...sort of. If we have just transfered your video into our computers and you'd like a chance to analyze it before making an editing appointment (thereby reducing your time here and the editing cost respectively), then we can produce a special preview dvd for a nominal fee. We will keep your materials and project in the computer for up to two weeks while you review your video and take notes. The preview dvd has a watermark and time-code (play-time) overlaid on top of the video so you can mark exact in and out points.
"You made this VHS tape/DVD for us a few days/months/years/decades ago and I'd like to edit it now. Can you do that?"
Yes...but if it's not the original source, do you still have the Masters we transferred from? While we can re-introduce a VHS tape or DVD into our systems, both formats can be a step back from the originals. Every time a VHS tape is copied there is a generational loss of quality and a DVD is made from a compressed MPEG2 Codec (which in English means that your video was squished to fit on the disc).
"Blah, blah, blah Power Point, blah, blah blah."
As video professionals creating video productions with Power Point (very different from creating video content for a power point presentation) is akin to a doctor performing surgery with a butcher's knife instead of a scalpel. Power Point is a piece of software from Microsoft OFFICE suite and belongs exactly there, in the office. Countless victims all around the world try to make family slideshows (complete with timed music and titles) with Power Point simply because that's what they are familiar with at work. Power Point, no matter how many new updates they add to it, is the absolute worst piece of software to try and do this with. There are hundreds of other software options out there (some are even free) all with varying degrees of features vs frustrations but you would be better off without any of them. Still don't believe me? Well, I'll gladly outline why we do not make Power Point presentations and some of the major downfalls involved:
It's not video. A Power Point project is not a closed pre-rendered presentation. When it's opened on a computer it is subject to all the factors associated with that specific computer. What fonts are were used, how "fast" it runs, what operating system is installed (XP, Vista, OSX, Linux). It's almost 100% guaranteed that when we open your Power Point project here (or when your friend does from his laptop at the event) it's not going to look or behave like it did for you.
-It's not a video editing software
Trying to time music to play with certain pictures in Power Point is futile. If you managed to do it, great, good for you. But we would have done it more effectively using our own software and in a quarter of the time it took you. Changing picture display times, syncing music, creating animated effects and custom titles should all be done on a timeline.
Do you know that one? It stands for Blue Screen Of Death. It refers to when a windows computer crashes and all you see is a big blue screen informing you of this. If you are at an event with hundreds of attentive viewers, is that what you want them to see mid-presentation? While your experience may not be as bad as a BSOD there are numerous less disastrous but still disruptive errors that can occur when presenting a Power Point presentation. Playback from a finalized source such as a DVD and familiar DVD player is a much better guarantee for a smooth error free presentation.
"I've already spent [OUTRAGEOUS VALUE OF TIME] trying to make this picture video (photo montage) for my family event in Power Point and...
...I can't make it work. Help!"
I'm very sorry to hear that. I wish you had contacted us sooner. While we can't replace the hours lost, grey hairs (or lost hairs) we can take the burden off your shoulders and create a quality Photo to Video montage for you with our professional editing suite.
...I managed to make it work but I want to play it from a DVD"
There are two ways to do this; both of them painful. If there isn't a lot of custom animation you need to keep then you can export all the slides (photos and titles) as jpegs burned to a CD and give us that with the music. Alternatively, if it's set to music (that is in sync the first time through, not the seventh or eighth) and has extensive animation effects, then we need you to bring it in on the laptop that presents it the way you want it. We will capture that presentation directly onto a DVD as it plays from the laptop
"I'd like to make a powerpoint from these pictures to show at [EVENT HERE]. Can you make one for me?"
Okay, obviously you skipped past everything above this. No, not with Power Point. But we can create an original high quality Photo to Video Montage complete with music, titles and effects that Power Point dreams it could have and produce it onto a DVD for easy playback.
"Can I edit this myself later?"
Sure. If you know how to do it. But we suggest that if you have inklings of being a Master-Movie-Maker then you bring in an external hard-drive so we can transfer the native uncompressed Quicktime files to you as well. It's always better to edit from the original tape or uncompressed files than something like a DVD. Also be aware that these are large files. An hour of standard definition video will take approximately 12GB of hard-drive space.
"Thank you for making this wonderful, amazing DVD production for us. We are going to treasure it for generations to come! Oh, and can I make copies of this myself at home and how do I do that?"
Okay, this one is tough, and a little bit personal. Nothing about what we do here is cheap and easy for us to produce. The technology is expensive and it takes a lot of training to use. The reason we can even offer these commercial services at the consumer level is because we do things to spread out the costs so they are affordable to you. Things like designing reusable templates, implementing automated transfer systems and recouping production costs in our copies. Now, having us make your copies is not only about dollars and cents. When we produce your disc we use the highest quality DVD brand (not available to consumers) which has the highest rate of reliable playback and durability. We also include a quality hardcover case with cover insert and print the label directly on the disc. This results in you having the best product available and helps us put our best face forward. But in short, no, we do not put any copyright protection on our productions so yes, if you know what you are doing, you can duplicate the DVD at home. Be aware however that you will be creating an inferior copy in order to avoid a minimal expense while at the same time making it all the less likely that we will be here to help you next time. Regardless please, please, do not ask us to take time in order to teach you this ripping process! That is asking us, to pay our staff, to help you learn, how to take money, out of our own pockets. Not appreciated.
"Do you have the game 'Super Zombie Bloody Assult XI'?
No. Some of us may play games, but we do not sell them.
"Do you sell Bell ExpressVu Receivers?"
O.O...what? No, I'm afraid not. If you'd like us to make something that might pass through a receiver, then we can help.
"Do you have the latest M. Night Shyamalan masterpiece in?"
NO. We are not a DVD rental store. And no, we can't help you pirate a copy [see below]
"I just bought [INSERT HOLLYWOOD BLOCKBUSTER TITLE HERE]. Can you copy it so I can give a copy to all my friends?"
Really? Sorry, no. While portions of copyrighted material may be used without permission in some circumstances under the Fair Use doctrine, we cannot fully reproduce copies. We feel just as strongly about our own productions and do everything we can to keep the pirates at bay.
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