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Transferring 8mm Video Tapes to my iMac.

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I'm looking for a way to transfer 8mm Video Tapes to my Mac. I have an old Sony CCD-TR9 video recorder. It only has yellow and black RCA connection ports; no HDMI. I was looking at this: Robot Check
and was wondering if anyone has had any experience using this item.
Any help or advise would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks,
Mike
 

chscag

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That looks pretty good for the price. The only thing I would caution you on is to make sure the Mac software they advertise to download is compatible with the current version of macOS you're using.

For example... If your current macOS is Catalina, the software would have to be 64 bit in addition to being able to work with your iMac.

Also, it may be less expensive to have a service do the conversions for you rather than buying that unit. Of course that would depend on how many tapes you have to convert.
 
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Thanks for replying. I've already checked their website and they have a version that is Catalina compatible. I could download the software from the site and use the key code that's provided in the box. My big concern is that I'm only able to get video and not audio when I plug my camera into my TV. I don't have a VCR so I can't plug it into that. I've tried multiple RCA cables of different colors to no avail. I'd hate to spend the money and it not work.
Mike
 

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Just a thought in case you hadn't thought of it. This might solve your connection issues. As I understand it your camera simply has a single yellow and a single black connection. If that the case try this;

1.In most cases the yellow lead carried the video signal. Connect that to the video port on the TV.
2. If your camera recorded in mono audio connect the black lead to the audio connection on the TV.you may have to try this with both audio connections on the TV (red and white). Check your manual some TVs expect the audio to be connected a specific one of those connections)
3. If your camera recorded in stereo audio you may be able to get an appropriate Y adapter that has a single connection on on end (to attach to the cable you have) and two connections on the other end to attach to the TV audio.

My suggestion would also be to make sure the company has a good return policy if the software doesn't work. I was doing a similar project some time ago and could never get the software to work. I was running High Sierra at the time I think and it was supposed to work with that. When it didn't I tried everything from 10.6.8 up with no luck.

When I contacted tech support their advice in a mix of broken English, could only be interpreted as try it under 10.6.8. I wrote back saying I'd already tried that. IIRC their response, in the same badly translated English, build down to try it under. 10.6.8. Apparently they don't understand when I said I'd already done that.

×
 
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I transferred some Sony Hi-8 tapes to digital a couple of years ago. The playback / recorder I purchased on eBay worked OK on all the tapes except for the long ones. There it failed to maintain a constant speed resulting a jerky conversion with a lot of gaps. Over all, the quality of the digital conversion was not as good as I'd hoped for. Eventually I took the tapes to a fellow that had the equipment and skill to convert the tapes and am pleased with the results of his conversion.
 
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There may be a somewhat better solution here. I pulled up the manual for that model Handycam you have and I used to have one that looked a lot like it. The nice thing about mine was it had a firewire port built into it. I was able to just plug the camera directly into the PowerBook I had at the time and import directly into the Mac.

So, rather than spending money on a video transfer kit like what you are looking at, if your cassettes are compatible with the Handycams like what I had, and if you can get one for a comparable price in good working condition off eBay or other venues, this would not only be easier but likely preserve the most detail.

EDIT: a quick note since I'm researching this a bit more. Your camera is a "Digital8" model. There are later models that switched to "Hi8" format and it's on some of these cameras you will likely find firewire built in. According to Wikipedia, "All Hi8 equipment can record and play in the legacy Video8 format."
8 mm video format - Wikipedia

EDIT 2: Boom! This is actually a later model Digital8 camera and it has Firewire built in.
Sony Handycam DCR-TRV130 Digital-8 Camcorder 27242586154 | eBay

This would be the old Firewire 400 standard, so you'd still need an adapter to plug it into whatever ports are available on your Mac. Ideally you'd be using Firewire/Thunderbolt/USB-C for maximum throughput.
 
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Thanks Slydude. You are correct about the connections on my tv; a single yellow and a single black. I'm using a cable with yellow, red and white on both ends.
1. I did connect the yellow to each port on the camera and tv.
2. I did connect the white to the other port on my camera and the other white to the tv; still no audio. Then, I swapped both whites for both reds; still no audio.
3. The owners manual for the camera says I can use a: VMC-910MS/920MS Cable for a stereo tv. I looked up this cable and it has a yellow and black connector on one end and a red, yellow and whiter on the other. I don't know if that's the key or not.
I checked the return policy and like any other software, once it's open, you can only exchange it for the same item.
Mike
 
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Thanks Rod, I clicked the link you provided but it only took me to the eBay home page. If I can't find a solution to the audio problem, I may have to send them out to be converted.

Mike
 
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Thanks Lifeisabeach, I really appreciate the time you took to research this. I see you're train of thought and this is definitely an option I hadn't considered. The good thing is, I'm not in a hurry to get this done. I could use eBay or perhaps a thrift store in my area. If I can connect the camera via a Firewire, would Quicktime player be able to handle the recording or is there another option?

Mike
 
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Thanks Lifeisabeach, I really appreciate the time you took to research this. I see you're train of thought and this is definitely an option I hadn't considered. The good thing is, I'm not in a hurry to get this done. I could use eBay or perhaps a thrift store in my area. If I can connect the camera via a Firewire, would Quicktime player be able to handle the recording or is there another option?
Actually you would use iMovie.

Here's a guide from Sony that goes into some detail. They do confirm that you can use iMovie and you can use a Thunderbolt port.
How to transfer DV or Digital8 videos to your Mac | Sony UK
 
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I just wanted to update my OP. After receiving this cable:

A:V Cable with Mini Connection.jpg

I went to the Roxio website and downloaded the Mac drivers. I tried it using Catalina and Mojave ... both failed. I then loaded the supplied CD onto my Windows 10 then Windows 7 laptops ... both failed miserably. Then I tried something. I completely uninstalled the software from my Windows 7 laptop (because it was in front of me), rebooted and re-installed. Durning the "re-installation", THE ONLY THING I CHANGED was: I agreed to have emails sent to me with new product announcements, deals etc. After the re-installation was complete, I rebooted again and the software worked flawlessly. I'm glad I've completed my project but based on my experience with Roxio, I don't think I'll ever purchase any of their software. All this being said, I never tried to re-install the software on my Mac. I figured; let me get this done before something else happens. Thanks again to all who replied to my OP.
Mike
 
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