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Easily transfer VHS tapes using the M1 iMac?

Guide ,
Aug 01, 2021 Aug 01, 2021

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I made this video because some people have wondered if the newer version of OS X and the new M1 iMac will support Firewire devices. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rHWHE3ilBbU

I use a Firewire DV converter to transfer hi 8 tapes and capture vhs tapes. Apple computers https://amzn.to/3gDE3aY https://amzn.to/3U2pts5 https://amzn.to/3sCe6vi https://amzn.to/3FnxbsM https://amzn.to/3SEbck9 Adobe CC 1 year https://amzn.to/3Da0qMN ADVC 110 Power adapter https://amzn.to/3DxSfvb

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Community Expert ,
Aug 01, 2021 Aug 01, 2021

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Moved to hardware forum

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LEGEND ,
Aug 01, 2021 Aug 01, 2021

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Sorry, but FireWire is not supported any more in any recent Mac or any recent version of MacOS. The last Macs that supported FireWire dated from about 2013.

 

In addition, standard-def video support has been depreciated in all recent Macs and all recent versions of MacOS.

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Guide ,
Aug 01, 2021 Aug 01, 2021

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Rjl90365,

 

You are sorry? You should be sorry that your information is incorrect? I have a 2017 Mac Mini that can use Firewire devices and I was able to do it with a new M1 iMac. I made my video to debunk incorrect comments like yours. That being said your opionion cannot change the facts but the facts should change your opinion.  Apple computers newer than 2013 can make use of Firewire devices.  Very few people still need to transfer VHS tapes but for those who do the Firewire DV converters are still an option for the M1 iMac. 



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Community Expert ,
Aug 02, 2021 Aug 02, 2021

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You just need the right adapters to make the patch and software that still supports DV capture and you should be good to go.

 

So for hardware, a Thunderbolt 3 or 4 Mac is going to need an Apple Thunderbolt 3 to 2 Adapter as well as an Apple Thunderbolt 2 to FireWire800 Adapter and then the FireWire800 9-pin to 4-pin cable (assuming the DV device is the more common 4-pin).

For software, iMovie and Final Cut Pro (and maybe Image Capture) should still work, but that feature could get dropped any time now.  The M1 native version of Premiere Pro no longer offers DV options for capture or playback.

 

All that said, USB VHS capture devices with corresponding software for capture might run $50 to $80 and there's less to patch.

If capturing VHS video for use in a documentary, I'd go the DV route to wind up with a DV-NTSC file.  

If capturing VHS simply to be able to view it on your computer or mobile device, I'd go with a USB device.

 

 

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Guide ,
Aug 03, 2021 Aug 03, 2021

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The cheap USB video transfer devices can be problematic. Some work some don't. 

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Community Expert ,
Aug 03, 2021 Aug 03, 2021

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All fine and dandy, but Canopus converters are no longer available.

If you are very lucky, you might find one on eBay or something simular

Alternative, you can use an old DV camera with analog in.

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Guide ,
Aug 03, 2021 Aug 03, 2021

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Many people on these forums use the Canopus DV converters. I made the video to demonstrate. the Firewrie DV converters can work with the M1 chip and the latest version of OS X. No one has ever stated you cannot use a DV camcorder. That being said most of  the USB devices are discontinued at this point in time and in the video I state you must by the DV converters used. .In 2021 I would still recomend the Firewire based DV converters on Mac and PC because they are hassle free compard to many other products. 

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Community Expert ,
Aug 03, 2021 Aug 03, 2021

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No one has ever stated you cannot use a DV camcorder.

quote

By @Andy 1968

 

Strange remark.

 

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Guide ,
Aug 04, 2021 Aug 04, 2021

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Ann

To my knowledge no one has ever stated a DV camcorder will not work like a Firewire DV converter. In fact I state in some of my videos (link below at seven minutes) that  most Firewire DV camcorders will work like a DV converter. Are we on the same page moving forward? 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5nubVDZvzNA

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Community Expert ,
Aug 04, 2021 Aug 04, 2021

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It's probably worth mentioning that a DV camcorder or DV deck has to support pass-through of the analog input.  Some DV camcorders and decks do not support it at all, meaning that the analog-in needs to be recorded to DV tape and then transferred via FireWire.  Also, some camcorders and decks require that it be enabled in the menu options.  It could seem like doesn't work when it just needs to be turned on.

 

 

 

 

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Community Expert ,
Aug 04, 2021 Aug 04, 2021

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I gice the USB analog capture device for VHS and other analog sources by Elgato very high marks - especially if you're looking just to have a video on your computer or mobile device for viewing (not for professional editing).  Their capture software is ceoss-platform, easy to use, allows trimming after the capture, deinterlaces, and crops for overscan.

 

 

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