|The charge for converting from VHS to CD can get expensive. For family tapes, this is not a bad idea. For TV recordings, if that show is available, the dvd might be the best option.|
Tapes loose quality over the years. Each play reduces that quality. They stretch and break. Played in a different device than recorded in also may have an effect. Interesting project - good luck!
If you have a device to play them, a capture device is the thing to buy. TV resolution is 352x240 (or something close). When transferred to a higher resolution, they do not appear as good. Has to do with adding the data for the 'extra' pixels. I have tried three different devices over the years. The latest plugs into the usb port. The software is better now than it was, but still, we are use to better image quality. Black and white doesn't suffer the same, but it's still noticable.
A device similar to this is suggested.
Pinnacle, Hauppauge, AVerMedia - all good names. Test the software and read reviews before purchasing. You might get best results by taking the best each has to offer.
I wan't happy with the quality of the old VCR tapes. It's the irreplacable ones I converted.