TechHelp Ottawa
We Digitize Betamax™ Tapes to DVD & MP4
(NTSC & PAL formats)

Due to Covid-19, TechHelp Ottawa is closed indefinitely. Please visit us regularly for updates. Thank you and stay safe.

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Ottawa: 343-887-8715

Video digitizing the right way!

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At TechHelp Ottawa, we do video digitizing the right way! We use only the best equipment available such as high quality DVD transfer decks and a studio Betamax unit that is compatible with both North American NTSC and European PAL formats.

We have also invested heavily in state-of-the-art computer software for digitally capturing Betamax content for conversion to MP4 video files. For tapes recorded in the NTSC format, MP4 files are manually cropped to eliminate the squiggly line at the bottom of the picture that is produced by what is called the NTSC video signal — a byproduct of the digitization process.

MP4 files can be edited for audio and video properties. Just ask us.



tax included



Price includes cropping
tax included

NOTE: Sound restoration techniques can be applied to video files converted from VHS, 8mm Camcorder and Mini-DV tapes. This is particularly effective in reducing consistent background noise such as fans, air conditioners and hum, and in enhancing voices. Visit this page on our website.

Please do not ask us to duplicate or convert commercial movies.

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Frequently Asked Questions

• The viewer chooses from one menu item at the beginning of the DVD.

• Since the DVD is imbedded with chapter markers, the "Skip" button on the remote control can be used to navigate forward at equal-intervals of 5 or 10 minutes. "Fast Forward" and "Rewind" buttons can also be used to to navigate through content.

• This method copies the entire Betamax tape from beginning to end, just like the original!

Scroll down to read our Frequently Asked Questions and Tips for Better Service
DVDs that have been transferred from NTSC Betamax tapes may display a skewed line at the bottom of the screen when you watch the disks on a computer. This happens because, when tapes are transferred to DVD and watched on a computer display, we see the whole picture, including the part at the bottom that was meant to be hidden through a process called over-scanning.

When playing these same disks on a DVD player, however, this bottom line—produced by the NTSC video signal—is hidden from view because of over-scanning. Similarly, the electronics of VHS players hides this skewed line through over-scanning.

Betamax tapes that are converted to MP4 video files are cropped at the bottom.
We use the best equipment available to ensure the best quality possible from the Betamax format.

Betamax tapes are analogue, however, producing only a standard definition (SD), low resolution picture at a 4 X 3 aspect ratio (like with older TVs).

Moreover, the picture quality of home Betamax tapes can be adversely affected by tape deterioration, slow recording speeds, less than ideal shooting conditions, over and under exposure, tracking problems, the fact that the tape is a dubbed copy of another tape, etc. The DVD reproduces these imperfections exactly. Read more below.
As the old saying goes: "You can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear." In the same way, digitizing and transferring analogue Betamax content to DVD (or to video file) can in no way improve picture quality. What we assure, however, is that the final product will mirror exactly the quality of content contained on the original tapes.

Be sure to check your tapes before delivering them to us because the tape contents will be reproduced exactly — flaws and all! By checking first, you'll know what to expect.
Yes, we can edit your Betamax tape content, but additional fees will apply. Please ask us in advance about editing your VHS content.

NOTE: Sound restoration techniques can be applied to MP4 video files as well. This is particularly effective in reducing consistent background noise such as fans, air conditioners and hum, and in enhancing voices. Ask us to explain.
We use only the best equipment available, such as a commercial grade Betamax player. We use Mac computers and advanced movie editing software for creating video files.
For just $5 more, the surface of each DVD is professionally imprinted with a custom-made label using an inkjet printing technique. Let us know at the outset if you would like to give us a picture that will be used in the label design. Each DVD is packaged in a paper sleeve for protection.

Tips For Better Service

IT IS VERY IMPORTANT that tapes are organized and accurately labelled — preferably by numbers. This helps us to properly label the resulting DVDs.
It is very helpful when you can indicate to us the length of each tape. This can also save you money, as two short tapes (one hour or less each) can be put onto one DVD. Otherwise, each Betamax tape is transferred to its own DVD, regardless of length (up to two hours).
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Our clients include:

Canadian Federation of Nurses Unions; Government of Canada; Lee Valley Tools; Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE); Retired Teachers of Ontario; Canadian Wheelchair Sports Association (CWSA); Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany; Ishaka Cultural Group; Sweet Grass Records; Lutheran Church Eastern Synod; Futures Food Products; Rideau Ferry Harbour; Heritage North Museum; Mosaic International; The Ayalik Fund; etc.

TechHelp Ottawa accepts major credit cards
TechHelp Ottawa accepts E-transfers
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All prices are in Canadian dollars and include tax. Rates may change without notice.