VHS to DVD

So I’m transferring the in-laws’ 10-20 year-old VHS tapes to DVD. I’m capturing into Premiere 6 using a Pinnacle DV500 card’s composite breakout box. However, this process is leaving a lot to be desired, namely:

  1. The sound synch normally nose dives after the first few minutes, leading to much futzing in Premiere

  2. It seems to be introducing some sort of skipping into the video (similar to messing with the vertical hold on an old TV)

My research into the problem leads me to believe that capture cards don’t work as well as just using a camcorder with an analogue-to-digital passthrough. Swell, except that I don’t have a camcorder, let alone one with ATD capabilities. Since I don’t really need one, I’d prefer not to spend money on a camcorder. However, I’d rather spend some dough than spend the rest of my life trying to fix botched captures.

So:

  1. On the slim chance that anyone has the same set up as me, any suggestions on how to fix my capture problems with the DV500?

  2. More generally, do you guys agree that a camcorder would produce a better quality capture?

  3. If so, any suggestions on which one to get? The cheapest I’ve found with ATD passthrough is the Canon Z100 for around $300. That’s still at least $100 than I want to pay for a camera I’ll probably never use for filming.

Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks.

I am not familiar with your equipment, or capturing with a camcorder, but for around $100-120 US you can get the the Hauppauge WinTV-PVR-USB2. It is a hardware Mpeg2 encoder:

http://www.hauppauge.com/pages/products/data_pvrusb2.html

I use this for transfering old VHS tapes to DVD, and also as a PVR for recording digital cable. Used in tandem with my pc or laptop. Since it encodes in hardware, very little resources are needed on the pc.

Audio sync is perfect, and quality is amazing.

The output (mpeg2) can be used directly in any dvd authoring application.

Despite answering neither of your questions, I hope that helps. ;)