Copy any Videotape or DVD

Remove Promos from Videotapes

Be Ready For Any Copy Protection

                             COPYING DVDs
   For copying unprotected DVDs, Nero works well enough.  DVDShrink3.2.0.15
(2004) is feeware and works for all protected DVDs. If you have any TV series
DVD that has two choices on the first page and then two more choices on the
next page, the entire DVD can be copied by unchecking everything except Main
   We always copy the main movie of all of our keeper DVDs to avoid being
force-fed all the lawyer-blather and the too-long, too-many, too-dumb promos
that the studios think you can't skip over. File the original in a safe place.
  We still have many great videotapes and like them because they stay where
they left off if you take them out of the VCR before seeing the entire film.
But some old rental tapes from thrift shops have far too many annoying promos.
  To remove them, advance the tape in the VCR to where the movie starts. On
the right-hand side of the cassette is a button to push that will allow the
tape door to be raised.  Place a small piece of wood or sponge between the
door and the cassette body to hold it up.
Videocassette with tape door holder. 
   The pencil points to the button. Using scissors, cut the tape in the middle
notch at a right angle.  To unlock the reels, push a 1/8" x 1 & 1/4" dowel
into the 1/4" hole in the bottom.
The promo tape removed.
  Pull out all the promo tape until the clear leader is seen. (It may be
necessary to hold the white plastic reel in with your finger while pulling the
tape out.) Cut the promo tape away at the leader just past the joint tape.
Put a piece of clear Scotch brand tape (not package or frosted tape) on the
BOTTOM of the tape (not the leader) so that 1/4" to 3/8" is available for the
  Now stick the leader end down aligned flush with the tape end.  Cut off the
excess Scotch tape on the sides. Turn either reel to pull the tape down flat.
Remove the dowel and the tape door holder and ease the door down.
                          "COPY PROTECTION"
   The Digital Rights Management cat and mouse game will never end.  The
studios want to incorporate a "broadcast flag" in the signal which will
disable video recording by stopping the program from going to recording media.
So far the courts have ruled in favor of viewers. But newer DVD/VCR/tuners
have instructions that say they will not allow copying of DVDs with Copy Never
protection. This is Copy Generation Management System (CGMS), which hides
this signal in the off-screen video lines.  (This is not "broadcast flag".)
Content Protection for Recorded Media (CPRM) is a hardware system that
locks a recorder's drives from saving.  There is also the older CSS, Content
Scrambling System.  And Macrovision analog copy protection which the Star box
circumvents.  High-Definition Copy Protection is an attempt to use the 20-wire
HDMI cables plus internal circuitry to stop hi-def recording.
  Regardless of any new copy-protection scheme in the future, at some point
a program or movie must be visible and audible.  It is at this point that any
video can be copied.  Using a high-quality security camera, a program or movie
in any standard, any resolution and with any "copy-protection" can be recorded
from a camera focussed on the screen and by using the TV's audio-out jacks.
  The camera is first connected to a portable TV's video-in jack while the
camera is being focussed and squared up with the main-TV screen.
  The audio-out jacks used for external speakers are connected to the video
recorder's line-in jacks.
  After squaring-up, focussing and moving the camera so that the TV screen
fills the portable TV's screen, move the video cable from the portable TV
video input to the recorder's video-in line jack.  Now wait for the program to
begin and start the recorder.  Or have the program start using the recorder's
  We use an Enforcer EV-1606-N6SQ camera with 6 mm lens.  The resolution is
540 lines. There is a small bit of barrel distortion.  We slid the rain hood
off, removed the part with the window and unplugged the night-viewing LEDs.
  For broadcast time-shifting, the recorder is set to the program time.  Mute
the TV speakers and leave the TV and the camera power on.
                         BEST VIDEO VIEWING
  The realism of any TV scene depends first on contrast ratio, then on color
saturation, then on color accuracy and finally on resolution.  A very low
response time results in a better view of action.  A wide viewing angle means
a good view from the side.
  Standard TV resolution is 640 x 480.  DVD resolution is 852 x 480.  HDTV
resolution is 1280 x 720 or better.  Blu-Ray is 1920 x 1080.
  Blu-Ray is a can of worms.  In one form, a list of codes stored in your
player would allow playing a Blu-Ray disk or not, depending on its code. Or a
computer program stored on the movie disk would run in your player and decide
if you were a legitimate viewer or not.  I have no idea what is going on in
that regard now or what the studios have up their sleeve for us in the future.
  There are programs that claim to let you copy Blu-Ray disks, which requires
Blu-Ray equipment. We have not looked into this arena, and most likely won't.
Table of formats.