I have a rather large number of old Hi-8 PAL videotapes, that I managed to convert to digital video using El Gato EyeTV Hybrid through an S-VHS cable.
That solution worked fine. It may not be the best quality, though I think that there isn't much quality to preserve beyond what I got. I don't know that, as I have no way to compare to other solutions. Comments welcome.
One fact about that solution is that it produces MPEG-2 video. The total disk space used for my videos is 168 GB.
I don't like MPEG-2 as a format: its compress rate is not great, it's difficult to process. What would be a better format for archival? Relevant features (in no order):
- compress rate vs quality (saving disk space is low priority, preserving quality, poor though it is, is high priority)
- long term support (avoid bit rot)
- adequate for video editing (at least easy to import in common non-linear editing software. I am on Mac, so that would suggest Final Cut or maybe even iMovie).
- interoperability/compatibility with Plex and typical DLNA servers/players.
Despite being a bit weak for point 3, I tend to favor H264. I converted all my videos to H264 using Handbrake, with its default H264 HighProfile preset. I saved a moderate amount of space, going down to 1.22 GB total.
Is there any point to converting those videos to any other format (codec/container) for archiving?