Converting 8mm, Video 8, Hi8 and Digital 8 to Digital and DVDIncluding Video 8, Hi8, and Digital 8 to Digital, DVD, MP4, AVI, MOV, usb and Blu ray transfers - San Diego
Video 8, Hi8, Digital 8 - 8mm video conversion service
How do you watch or transfer video 8, Hi8 or digital 8 tapes to DVD or a digital file if you no longer have a 8mm vcr or 8mm camcorder? Even if you were to purchase a 8mm to DVD digital converter from Amazon, Walmart or Best Buy, you still need a functioning 8mm video player in order to play the tapes.
They stopped making 8mm camcorders years ago and it’s getting harder to find any in good working condition. 8mm video tapes start to fade 7-10 years after video has been recorded on them. With every year that goes by video quality gets worse as the video information gradually disappears from the tape. The time to convert your videos is now before they get any worse.
We convert Video 8, Hi8 and Digital 8 to DVD, Gold Archival DVDs, CD, blu ray, usb and digital files including MP4, AVI and MOV, for editing or uploading to the web.
For videos from other countries we can transfer from PAL Video 8, Hi8 and Digital 8 to NTSC DVD, digital, usb, MP4, MP3, MOV and AVI.
Did you know that 8mm video and 8mm film are not the same?
Many people confuse 8mm video with 8mm film; they are 2 very different types of media. Since they require a completely different method for conversion, the transfer cost varies significantly. 8mm video is magnetic tape that comes in a rectangular cartridge as in the photos above. If this is what you have then you are in the right place.
If this does not match what you have, you may have 8mm film instead. You’ll know as 8mm and super 8 film are contained on round reels, except for Polavision film that is encased in a rectangular cartridge. You’ll find more information about these on our Polavision, 8mm and super 8 film to DVD and digital transfer page.
You’ll find additional info in our blog article on the difference between 8mm film and 8mm video.
Do you know the difference between 8mm video and VHS-c?
Even though the tapes used for each video format is similar in size they are quite different. VHS-C tapes are thicker, the same width as regular VHS tapes and are recorded the same way. Using a VHS-c adapter, VHS-c tapes can be played in a standard VHS vcr. You find more info about this format on our VHS-c to DVD and digital transfer page.
Despite what you may have read or heard, 8mm video cassette adapters do not exist. 8mm video tapes are not as wide as VHS tapes and will not work in a VHS vcr, so there was never an adapter made for 8mm tapes.
What makes our 8mm video to DVD and 8mm video to digital conversion service better?
All 8mm video transfers performed in our studio – Faster Service
We never send our clients’ family memories overseas or to any other transfer factory. All Video 8, Hi8 and Digital 8 to DVD and digital transfer orders are done right here in our San Diego studio. This enables us to provide a better quality transfer and faster turnaround than most other companies. Most orders are completed in less than 2 weeks, many within a few days!
Pricing based on actual length of the video
Most transfer services will charge you the same price per tape, whether your video is 2 hours or 5 minutes. You’ll save with our flexible pricing that is based on the actual length of each tape. Bring in all of your videos and save even more with our volume packages.
Digital conversion to MP4, AVI and MOV
Sunray was one of the first companies to provide video 8, Hi8 and digital 8 to digital conversion service. After converting your video to MP4, AVI or MOV files, they can be put onto a USB flash drive or external hard drive for your convenience.
AVI and MOV files offer the best quality. MP4 files are more compact as they are compressed to 1/10 the size of AVI or MOV. AVI and MOV are also better for editing purposes should you decide to do that.
Many places only offer MP4 versions of your videos. We offer AVI, MOV and MP4 formats for your convenience.
First to transfer video to true Archival Gold DVDs
Your family videos cannot be replaced and it’s important to preserve them as long as possible. That’s the reason we became one of the first companies to transfer 8mm, Video 8, Hi8 and Digital 8 to Gold Archival DVDs. Their 100 year lifespan makes it one of the longest lasting media options available for saving your videos.
Volume level adjustment option
In cases where the sound is too quiet on the tape, we can raise the volume during the transfer if you choose that option. Most video transfer companies will leave the volume as it is.
These are just a few of the reasons people choose Sunray Video for transferring their videos. We’ve listed more reasons below. Very few video transfer services can match the variety, quality and fast service we provide. Our reviews say it all.
Bring in your videos today to get your FREE estimate! Or give us a call 858-578-4786
Which format is the best for transferring 8mm video?
To answer this we must first determine what you plan to do with your video. Do you plan to watch it on TV only, watch it on a computer or do you plan to edit the video? The following options and descriptions may help with your decision.
8mm video to CD vs DVD vs Blu ray
A lot of people ask about converting 8mm video to CD. Often they are confusing CD with DVD as the discs look very similar.
Converting Video 8, Hi8, Digital 8 to CD
CDs are not really designed for video, they only hold up to about 700mb of information which is not a lot. CDs were originally designed for music, audio and data and that’s what they are best used for. If you just want the audio portion from the video then CDs are a good option, but you’ll be limited to about 70 minutes or so. CDs will play on CD, DVD and blu ray players.
Converting Video 8, Hi8, Digital 8 to DVD
When movies first became available on disc they were put on DVDs. DVDs hold up to 4.7GB of information or about 2 hours of video. If you think you’re only going to watch your 8mm videos on your TV using a DVD or Blu ray player then a DVD will be the best option. We recommend putting them on a 24k Gold Archival DVD that will last longer than any other media currently available.
DVDs will play on DVD players, blu ray players and on computers equipped with a DVD drive and appropriate DVD player software.
Learn more about the difference between CD, DVD and Blu ray.
Converting Video 8, Hi8, Digital 8 to Blu ray
Blu ray discs were created for high definition video as they hold a lot more data (25GB) than regular DVDs. 8mm video tapes are considered standard definition so there isn’t really any significant benefit for putting them on a blu ray disc. Blu ray would be a better choice for HDV or hi-def camcorder footage. The biggest disadvantage for using Blu ray discs is that they will only play on blu ray players.
Video 8, Hi8, Digital 8 to Digital vs DVD
Not everyone has a disc player these days, so we get a lot of requests to convert 8mm tapes to digital files such as MP4, MOV and AVI. We were one of the first companies to offer this option.
Video 8, Hi8, Digital 8 to Digital File Conversion (8mm to usb)
If you don’t own a DVD or Blu ray player and plan to watch your video on a computer only or you want to have the video edited, converting your 8mm video to a digital file may be a better choice. Your video can then be put onto a usb flash or hard drive.
Editing video from a DVD is not ideal since the video is compressed and may produce a lower quality final product. You’ll also need special software to “rip” the video from the disc into an editable file format.
Converting Video 8, Hi8, Digital 8 to AVI or MOV (8mm to Mac)
If you want the best quality digital file, then we recommend converting your 8mm tapes to AVI or MOV format. If you want to edit your videos then either of these should work. Both formats are not compressed like MP4 and can be recognized by most video editing programs. AVI is a native file format for PCs and MOV is native for MACs. 1 hour of video in AVI or MOV will take 13GB of drive space.
Converting Video 8, Hi8, Digital 8 to MP4
If you want to upload your videos to the web or share them with others (without editing) you may want to have them digitized to an MP4 file. This will keep the file size smaller as this is the most compressed file format. It us commonly used by YouTube. Many of the modern TVs have a USB port that will accommodate a flash drive and can play MP4 files. 1 hour of video in MP4 will take 1.3GB of drive space.
Gold DVDs last longer than a hard drive or flash drive
If you’re thinking about storing your videos on a hard drive, keep in mind that the average lifespan for a traditional-style (spinning platter) hard drive is about 5-7 years before they crash or seize up. For this reason they are not the best option for long-term archival storage of your videos, so you may want to put them on a Gold Archival DVD instead.
Converting Video 8, Hi8, Digital 8 to MP3
Converting 8mm video to mp3 could be considered the same as converting video to audio. If you only want the audio portion from a video then mp3 is an option. If you want to keep the video and the audio then AVI, MOV or MP4 make more sense.
Video 8, Hi8 to VHS
We can also transfer video 8 and Hi8 tapes to VHS should the need arise.
For additional information available on converting to DVD vs digital refer to our blog article on choosing a format for converting video to DVD or digital.
If you’re still not sure what format to get, give us a call. We’ll make sure you get what you need.
How much does it cost to convert 8mm tapes to digital or DVD?
Most transfer firms charge a flat rate per tape regardless of the length, so you pay the same price whether it’s 5 minutes or 2 hours long. We charge different rates based on the length of the actual recorded material, as you’ll see below.
8mm tapes can hold up to 2 hours of video if the tape has “120” printed on the shell (see photo). Tapes printed with “90” hold 90 minutes, “60” will hold 60 minutes, etc. This applies to both video 8 and Hi8 tapes.
For Digital 8 recordings, tapes labeled “120” will actually contain up to 60 minutes of digital recording when the SP mode was selected or 90 minutes when LP mode was selected.
The other factor in pricing is based on whether you want a DVD, Gold Archival DVD or a digital file (MP4, MOV or AVI).
8mm, Video 8, Hi8, Digital 8 to Digital and DVD Pricing & Conversion Options
We offer 4 options for transferring your video tapes to digital form:
- 8mm tape to DVD includes: 1 standard DVD copy.
- 8mm tape to Archival Gold includes: 1 Gold 100-year Archival DVD copy and 1 standard DVD copy.
- 8mm tape to Digital file only package includes: Digitizing to AVI, MOV or MP4 file/s. No DVDs in this package.
- 8mm tape to Gold DVD & digital file package includes: Put onto 1 Gold 100-year Archival DVD copy, 1 standard DVD copy and digitized to AVI, MOV or MP4 file.
|<30 minutes||<60 minutes||<120 minutes|
|to Standard DVD||$10/tape||$14/tape||$18/tape|
|to Gold DVD||$14/tape||$20/tape||$26/tape|
|to Gold DVD & file*||$25/tape||$35/tape||$45/tape|
Volume discounts for orders over 15 tapes.
*Price does not include Hard drive or Flash drive.
All video transfer orders under $30 will be charged a minimum transfer charge of $30.
Additional Services Available
- Add chapters to DVD: $ 5.00 per chapter
- Additional Gold DVD copies: $15.00 per disc / Get 3 Gold copies for $40
(Each gold disc comes with a FREE standard dvd copy)
- Additional Standard DVD copies: $ 8.00 per disc / Get 3 copies for $18 / Get 5 for $25
PAL 8mm, Video 8, Hi8, Digital 8 to NTSC Conversion
Videos produced in the United States, Canada and Mexico are usually in a format referred to as NTSC. Videos produced outside of North America may in a foreign video format referred to as PAL.
We convert PAL 8mm video, Video 8, Hi8 and Digital 8 to NTSC DVD, digital, usb, MP4, MP3, MOV or AVI. We can also transfer NTSC videos to PAL DVDs when you need to send a DVD to another country.
|<30 minutes||<60 minutes||<120 minutes|
|to Standard DVD||$14/tape||$20/tape||$24/tape|
|to Gold DVD||$18/tape||$26/tape||$32/tape|
|to Gold DVD & file*||$30/tape||$42/tape||$52/tape|
How to Order
Step 1: Make sure each tape has its own unique label on it. We will use that label for the chapter title on the DVD or the file name for a digital file. Keep the title short, less than 30 characters.
Step 2: Decide what format you want your videos converted to, DVDs or digital files (MP4, AVI or MOV). If you only want DVDs skip to Step 4.
Step 3: DIGITAL FILEs: What file format do you want them in: AVI, MOV or MP4? Will you be providing your own external USB hard drive or flash drive or do you want us to add one to the order? If you’re providing your own, don’t forget to include it with your videos. If you don’t want any DVDs skip to Step 8.
Step 4: DVDs: For transfer to DVDs: If the tapes are less than 2 hours each, do you want us to combine them to fill up each 2 hour DVD? This will conserve space in your media cabinet. Is it okay for us to split any tape over 2 discs if it will not fit?
Step 5: Number the video tapes in the order you want them to appear on the DVDs (if you have a preference).
Step 6: Decide how you want your DVDs to be labeled. How do you want it to read? This is just for your benefit so that one day in the future, when you pull out the DVD you’ll know what’s on it. (Example: Smith Family Videos)
Step 7: Do you want your videos on Gold Archival 100-year DVDs? Will you need any additional DVD copies for anyone else? How many?
Step 8: Do you have any 8mm or 16mm films you need transferred to DVD or digital files? Do you have any photos or slides you need scanned to digital files? This would be a good time to get them together and bring in with your videos.
Step 9: Now you’re ready to bring your videos to Sunray for transfer. Select the option below for dropping them off in person or ordering by mail. If you prefer to ship them to us, we recommend using a courier such as UPS or FedEx for shipping as they have good tracking systems so you’ll know where the package is at all times.
Drop Off in Person
Order by Mail
Why choose Sunray Video for your 8mm video to DVD or digital transfer?
Before you send your money and irreplaceable memories out to be converted, you’re entitled to know what’s going to happen with them. Most companies say very little about their actual transfer process or how their process compares with others. You shouldn’t have to make such an important decision based solely on price. We think there are some things you should know about our process.
All transfers are performed in our studio
All video transfers are performed in our facility by our staff. We will never send your memories out to another company. This also helps us get your videos back to you faster.
One of the fastest transfer services available
We offer one of the fastest video conversion services available. Most of our transfers take from a few days to a few weeks instead of 3 weeks to 3 months like many other firms.
Experienced Technicians and Editors
Our technicians have over 17 years of experience in converting video. We can help you determine what format you have and what format will best suit your needs. Our editors have over 22 years experience in editing video and can help you edit your video.
100 Year Gold Archival DVD
Do not be fooled by imitation archival DVDs. So called 100 year discs are not the same as the true Gold Archival DVD. Gold DVDs will last much longer than standard DVDs.
Transfers from Video to Digital files
Your videos can be converted to MP4, AVI or MOV for editing, sharing or uploading to the web. Transfer to MP3 also available for the audio portion only.
Transfer rates based on length of video
Our rates are determined by the length of video on each tape. You won’t be charged the full price for shorter videos like most other transfer companies.
Videos may be combined to save space
We can combine your shorter video tapes onto fewer DVDs, so it will take up less space in your media cabinet.
We offer discounts based on how many tapes you bring in for transfer.
All videos returned
You’ll receive all your video tapes back in their original condition.
We can repair damaged video tapes if needed.
Did you know?
Magnetic video tape was only designed for 7-10 years of optimal use. After that the image quality will begin to deteriorate. As more time goes by, more information is lost in the recording.
Additional 8mm Video Transfer Info
How many 8mm tapes can fit on a DVD?
That depends on the length of the recording on each tape. A DVD will hold up to 2 hours of video. 8mm tapes recorded in the SP setting can hold up to 2 hours of video. You can have as many 8mm tapes on a DVD that will fit within the 2 hour limit.
What is the difference between video 8, Hi8 and digital 8?
All three formats use the same tape shell and 8mm wide video tape. Video 8 was the first 8mm tape format introduced and was capable of recording at a similar resolution to VHS and VHS-c, approximately 240 horizontal lines.
Hi8 came later, increasing the horizontal resolution to 400 lines in order to keep up with the competing SuperVHS format. Most Hi8 players and camcorders were capable of playing back both video 8 and Hi8 tapes.
The last 8mm video format released was digital 8, which recorded video onto the tape in digital format as opposed to the analog recording used for video 8 and Hi8. Most digital 8 players and camcorders were capable of playing all 3 8mm video formats, making them backwards compatible.
How does the quality of the DVD or Digital file compare with the original 8mm tape?
Converting 8mm to DVD or a digital file (AVI or MOV) does not lose any quality using our transfer process. Transfer to an MP4 file may lose a little due to the compression factor, but it’s usually not noticeable.
Can a broken 8mm tape be transferred?
If the tape or the cassette shell is broken, we can usually repair it prior to transfer for an additional charge.
Can the video be edited?
If there are any parts of the video that you want to have edited we recommend transferring the 8mm to a digital file such as AVI or MOV. It is much easier to edit the video in this format. After the conversion, you can edit the video yourself if you have the software and know how to use it or you can have us edit it for you for an additional charge.
How long does it take to convert 8mm to DVD or digital?
8mm conversion is a “real time” process with no way to do a high speed transfer. Our normal turnaround time can run from a day to a few weeks depending on how much video you have to convert. We’re typically faster than most transfer services. In the past we’ve heard that Walmart and Costco can take up to a few months to convert 8mm to DVD. Since both places have to send the videos out to another company for transfer that will add a few more days to the process. If that company is backlogged it will add even more time to that.
What is the difference between VHS-c and Hi8 or Video 8?
VHS-c tapes can be played in a regular VHS vcr with the use of a VHS-C adapter. Hi8, video 8 and digital 8 tapes require an 8mm vcr to play the tapes. A video 8 or Hi8 camcorder can also be used to play the tapes but may need to be connected to a TV for viewing if the camera doesn’t have its own screen. For digital 8 tapes you would need a Sony digital 8 camcorder to transfer to computer or DVD.
How does Walgreen’s 8mm video to DVD transfer compare?
After checking their website it appears Walgreens charges a lot more than we do. They charge $24.99 per tape plus $9.99 for the DVD. For a 2 hour tape put on a gold archival DVD we charge only $26 and you get an additional regular DVD copy FREE! Shorter tapes are even less.
Walgreens does not offer the option of converting video 8, Hi8 or digital 8 to digital at all. And they send their transfers out to another company, adding more time to the process (3 weeks to 3 months depending on their backlog).
How do Walmart and Costco 8mm video to DVD transfers compare?
Both companies send their transfers out to another company which will add more time to their process. Turnaround time can vary from 3 weeks to 3 months.
Walmart transfer prices are more expensive but don’t necessarily yield better results.
After checking their website it appears Costco does not offer the option of converting 8mm, video 8 or Hi8 to digital at all. They have a limit of no more than 2 tapes per disc.
For additional information on 8mm video to DVD or digital transfers refer to our video transfer tips and FAQs.
Video 8, Hi8, Digital 8 Tips and FAQs
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