When we reviewed Elgato's video encoding widget, we praised its ease of use, but at £90, wished it was cheaper. It looks like our prayers have been answered: Roxio has produced Easy VHS to DVD for Mac which is a third cheaper.
Best of all, it's no harder to use. In fact, it's pretty identical, since it uses the same basic software.
You hook up your video source over Composite or S-Video (unlike the Elgato model, this one doesn't come with cables or a SCART adaptor), tell the software how long the recording is and press Go.
You're given the option of stopping recording automatically after the preset time has elapsed, or you can simply click a big red button to stop it manually.
Once the video is captured – it happens in real time, of course, so don't expect quick results – you're given the option to open it in QuickTime or iMovie, or send it straight to the bundled copy of Toast Basic so you can burn it onto a DVD, provided you have a supported writer.
This dongle records in MPEG-2, which is DVD's native format, so it's quick and easy to burn DVDs. QuickTime can't, by default, open MPEG-2 files, so it has to transcode it first – it's not multi-core optimised, so it can take an age.
There's no simple way to convert files for iPod or iPhone (though iTunes could do that for you), or to upload to YouTube directly, and the MPEG-2 format is much more of a space hog on your hard disk than the H.264 files that the Elgato Video Capture produces, but if you're specifically looking for a solution to let you transfer old videos to DVD, this has you covered.
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