convert vcr to dvd easily with top 4 methods 

Table of Contents

1. Part One: VHS vs VCR
2. Part Two: Can VCR Tapes be Converted to DVD?
3. Part Three: How to Convert VCR to DVD?
4. Part Four: How to Convert VHS to DVD?

In the last 90's and early 2000s, VCRs were the players that flooded the market. People bought VCRs and used them to play their cassettes/tapes, which were in VHS format. However, technology never stops advancing; the world moved on, and it happened that VCRs became outdated and unwanted as VCD and DVD players came into play. DVD won over VCD to be the de-facto format used up till date. But since people go their old memories recorded in VHS format, which can only be played with a VCR player, the need to convert VCR to DVD became a necessity. 


This article explicitly explains how you can easily convert VCR to DVD using the best software app that works for this purpose.


Part One: VHS vs VCR

People usually get confused about these two acronyms – VHS and VCR. Here’s the simple and succinct explanation regarding these terms.

VHS – Video Home System

VHS is a video format invented in 1970 by JVC, a Japanese company. It was the standard format analog video recording on tapes and cassettes. The last movie shot in VHS format was the 2006 "A History of Violence."


VCR – Videocassette Recorder or Video Cassette Recorder

VCR is not a video format but a device capable of recording and playing videocassettes. Many companies produced VCR players until 2016 when it became apparent that DVD has taken over.  Funai Electric reportedly made the last VCR device in July 2016.


Both VHS and VCR are dead and gone; the VHS format does no longer exist, and VCR players are no more. Nevertheless, you could still find a VCR player in some stores.

So, what’s the clear difference between VHS and VCR?

The difference is, VHS is a video format and VCR is the name of a player that plays VHS tapes. 


Part Two: Can VCR Tapes be Converted to DVD?


Apparently, VCR tapes cannot play on DVD players, the only possible way to still playback your VCR tapes in by converting then to DVD format and also burning them to a DVD disc. 


How to convert VCR tapes to DVD? You need to get a VCR to DVD converter. Interestingly, there are quite many to convert VCR tapes to DVD. However, the easiest way is when you use a VHS/DVD combo device; this method is straightforward but takes more time, and costs more. A typical VHS/DVD combo unit costs above $900. 


But for a cheaper price, you can grab a video capture device and DVDFab DVD Creator software. These tools will help in converting VCR tapes to DVD discs. Additionally, DVDFab DVD Creator provides more exciting features to tune your VCR movie and make it more appealing when you finally convert it to DVD.


So, for the question, “can you convert a VCR tape to DVD?” The simple answer is YES; you can. The next section explains how to combine a video capture device and DVDFab DVD Creator to turn your VCR movies to DVD format.



Part Three: How to Convert VCR to DVD?


There are places you can go to convert your old VCR tapes to DVD discs for playback on DVD players. In fact, there are four ways to convert VCR tapes to DVD.


Method One: Using DVDFab DVD Creator and a Video Capture Device

The things you need to accomplish this method include:

  • A VCR player

  • A video capture device

  • Your PC (windows or mac) with DVDFab DVD Creator installed

  • And a blank DVD disc to burn the resulting video

digitnow video capture converter

 A video capture device

Firstly, you need to connect the analog cables from the video capture device to your VCR player. Afterwards, connect the digital end (usually USB) of the video capture device to your PC. Once you have accomplished this connection, you can start playing the VCR tape. With the video capture device connected to your PC and the VCR player, the playing VCR movie will be recorded and saved on your PC in a digital format (usually MPEG format). 


After the recording, you won’t be needing the video capture device, as well as the VCR player anymore; however, except you want to convert more videos. This is where to introduce DVDFab Video Creator software.

DVDFab DVD Creator is a leading software solution that lets you create DVDs as fast as possible. The speed is faster than what you’ll get from other alternatives. Plus, this software supports a comprehensive “advanced settings” panel where you can customize your DVD movie. Also, you can create a custom menu for the VCR movie you're converting the DVD.


How to use DVDFab DVD Creator to Convert VCR Tapes to DVD

dvdfab dvd creator interface

First step: launch DVDFab 11 on your MacBook or Windows PC, and click on the “Creator” module. Upload the VCR VHS movies to DVDFab DVD Creator interface. Interestingly, you can upload more than one to this VCR to DVD converter if they are many (you recorded with the video capture device).

dvdfab dvd creator vcr

Second step: adjust the video to fit your disc by clicking the “fit to disc” checkbox. Also, you can launch the “Advanced Settings" panel to customize your video or click the “Menu” option to create a custom menu for your potential DVD movie with this VCR to DVD converter.  


Third step: preview your video to see how it will appear of DVD playback devices. Insert a blank DVD disc to your computer, and click “Start” to trigger the VCR to DVD conversion. DVDFab DVD Creator will convert and burn the VCR tape to your DVD disc.

The burning process might take time to complete depending on the size of the movie.


Method Two: Using a Combo Unit

A combo unit comprises of dual input channels; a VCR tape channel and a DVD disc channel. So, how do you use a VCR/DVD combination unit?
 funai vhs to dvd recorder

  • Purchase it from a store (online or online) – it’s usually expensive to get such a VCR to DVD converter. 

  • When you get it, connect the device to power and insert your VCR tap in its channel and a blank disc (DVD) in the other channel.

  • After you have inserted the tape and disc, press the “Play” button beside the VCR input and press the “Record” button beside the DVD input. 

  • This will play your VCR movie, and at the same time record the movie to the blank DVD disc. 

This method is the easiest, but not the fastest, and it’s the costliest.


Method Three: Using a VCR/DVD Recorder

Here, you need to buy a DVD recorder device, connect it with your VCR player and it will record the VCR tap as it plays. 

This is similar to method two above, but the difference is that a combo unit comes with both VCR player and DVD recording functions. In contrast, this method requires you get a separate DVD recorder device and also a VCR player. 
 dvd recorder

  • Connect the DVD recorder to your VCR player using analog cables.

  • Play the tape in your VCR player and press the “record” button on your DVD recorder.

  • Wait for the VCR movie to play completely, and it would be dubbed to your DVD disc inserted in the DVD recorder.


Method Four: Visit a VCR to DVD Conversion Store

Instead of finding above VCR to DVD converters, retails service centres such as Walmart and Walgreens offer analog to digital conversion services at a price. You can visit these stores and get your old VCR tapes converted to DVD.


Part Four: How to Convert VHS to DVD?

Here, after saying so much about how to convert VCR to DVD and the top choice for a good VCR to DVD converter, lastly let’s move on to how to convert VHS to DVD with a good VHS to DVD converter. Apparently, you will need to get an analog to digital video capture device and a DVD creator software (ex. DVDFab DVD Creator). 


The video capture device will record the tape from your VCR player and save it in MPEG digital format on your computer. Subsequently, you will use DVDFab DVD Creator to convert and burn the VCR movie to DVD. Besides, you can extract ISO file from DVD to back it up digitally on your laptop or hard drive, check out more in this post: best ISO extractor to convert ISO files.