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DeepHour
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26 Nov 2021, 10:02 pm

This format went into decline over twenty years ago, when DVD began to take over as the main format for pre-recorded films and the like. In the UK it's quite difficult to find VHS tapes anywhere these days, but you can still find them selling for around £0.50 to £1.00 in a few charity shops.

Just a few weeks ago however, I was charged £5 in a charity shop for a VHS version of an obscure early 1960s film called 'Night Tide', and I've noticed several items on Ebay going for £50-£100, though admittedly for rare titles. Even saw a couple in the £200-£250 range.

Does anyone here still watch material in VHS format, and do you think films on VHS will ever become desirable and collectable?


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funeralxempire
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26 Nov 2021, 10:35 pm

I haven't had a VCR since '01 or so. That said, I can imagine a market existing for VHS and DVD releases of content that hasn't been re-released in a better format.


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27 Nov 2021, 6:33 am

Personally, I doubt it.

It's not like vinyl where the original pressings have a unique analogue sound that for many beats the digital conversions. VHS looked bad at the time and still looks bad - even worse now our screens are so high resolution. Even unplayed VHS can look bad in fact because the tape itself degrades over time.

Also, although production of turntables had dwindled by the time vinyl had its resurgence, many vintage turntables were entirely mechanical and still worked, or could be brought back to life with a little lubrication. VHS players have far more complicated mechanisms, plus circuit boards and microchips which can all go wrong. Most of them don't work anymore and nobody is making new VHS players.

Plus the DVD boom ensured that there were digital copies made of almost everything available so you had better quality, plus extras which didn't exist on VHS.

So really, the only appeal of VHS is the very small amount of material that never got transferred to digital, or I guess maybe some of the box-art might be of interest to someone?

I think it will only be a very small number of enthusiasts who remain interested in VHS.

Which is a bummer because I have some old VHS stuff in my loft and I wish it did have value.



Kerch
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27 Nov 2021, 5:45 pm

I can't even remember the last time I saw a VHS tape. They were still surprisingly common when I was little and my grandparents held onto them just a little longer but haven't anything but DVD's for ages.

Mind, DVD's are also becoming obsolete. Everybody streams these days and I don't think that's going to stop.
I'm thinking covid was created by netflix to get everybody to stream. Sounds paranoid but I'm convinced they're evil enough to do that.

So yeah, I've no VHS films as far as I know. I know some people, film buffs and all, like collecting them.



Mountain Goat
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27 Nov 2021, 5:51 pm

We still use them now and then. I did not notice they were obsolite until a few years ago someone said it was old technology. My Mums computer is an ordinary PC. It has been updated to windows XP or whatever comes after that so it is not old. My nieces partner and family came and she showed it to him and he said "Oh. I have never seen a real PC before. We were shown what it was like years ago in school!



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27 Nov 2021, 5:54 pm

Our top loading video player gave up a couple of years ago so we had another one which is really good. It can rewind the tapes in under 30 seconds!



katzhutte
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27 Nov 2021, 5:56 pm

Factory sealed Star Wars trilogy ( red label ) on VHS sell for $10,000+



Mountain Goat
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27 Nov 2021, 5:58 pm

I heard that 60% of films on VHS (Proper films) never made it to DVD.



DeepHour
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27 Nov 2021, 10:40 pm

Thanks for those replies. I would tend to agree that all but a very small percentage of VHS releases are extremely unlikely ever to have any value.

As for the actual video recorders, I have half a dozen of them, only one of which is still used to any degree. The other five were all still working the last time I tried them. One thing I observed about these machines was just how poor the build quality of the later ones was (1990s, early 2000s) compared with their 1980s equivalents. I must have taken at least eight expired VHS machines to the recycling unit between about 1998-2010, whereas my first recorder, an ex-rental Sony Betamax C7, manufactured around 1980, worked fine until 1996.

I think something similar applies to the quality of the actual tapes as well. Those from the 1980s are much heavier than later ones, and were well capable of lasting for decades (I still have lots of them). Those from the mid-1990s and later are far lighter, seem to have inferior tape which can easily get snagged in the recorder, and are prone to fungal infestation too. The picture quality on these often deteriorated quickly as well.


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katzhutte
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28 Nov 2021, 12:09 am

DeepHour wrote:


I think something similar applies to the quality of the actual tapes as well. Those from the 1980s are much heavier than later ones, and were well capable of lasting for decades (I still have lots of them).




DeepHour
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28 Nov 2021, 12:13 am

^ Yes, I still have a few 1980s Scotch tapes in excellent condition. Interesting that the advert also features an L750 Betamax cassette as well - I've even got one or two of those, but no machine on which to play them!


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katzhutte
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28 Nov 2021, 12:26 am

Betamax were far superior machines IMO , shame they lost the marketing war with VHS ( which was allegedly due to VHS having more porn titles :roll: )



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28 Nov 2021, 6:23 am

katzhutte wrote:
Betamax were far superior machines IMO , shame they lost the marketing war with VHS ( which was allegedly due to VHS having more porn titles :roll: )


Some time ago I watched the linked video about V2000
which was the third video format in the format wars.



In this video it is suggested that the main reason that
VHS became the dominant format, is because most early
VCR machines (about 70% in the UK) were rented,
and the rental market used VHS VCR machines
because they could re-badge them with their company
name or logo, whereas Sony wouldn't allow this.
Consequently films were predominantly released in the
VHS format to supply this market.

Image



Last edited by Soliloquist on 28 Nov 2021, 6:32 am, edited 1 time in total.

theprisoner
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28 Nov 2021, 6:29 am

VHS is low fidelity trash. That i loved at the time,but still trash. It was so good when DVD came in.


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Mountain Goat
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28 Nov 2021, 7:16 am

I never did find out how to rewind DVD's.



katzhutte
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28 Nov 2021, 7:41 am

Mountain Goat wrote:
I never did find out how to rewind DVD's.


Image