A project I am part of would ideally require to incorporate extract of several hour longs video interviews from the 1980s. They are on VHS video tape, Stereo SECAM (French system). I have (good) master tapes and one or two copies of each tape for easy viewing. I wonder what kind of process I can use to convert them to a convenient digital format for importing and later editing while preserving the most of the original's quality.

I have also a working tape recorder/viewer for this format and a good monitor for its video output (SONY).

How can I obtain the best results? Should I first go through PAL conversion, so I can use more conventional equipment?

Should I subcontract the converting part to a specialized company?

(Note: I do not have sufficient reputation yet to tag properly this question, please feel free to do it )

2 Answers 2


The ADVC-300 can take SECAM input: http://www.grassvalley.com/products/advc300

This will convert to DV format, which is quite sufficient for VHS quality.


Personally, I would use a Video Capture Card that supports SECAM (such as the Hauppauge model 01087: WinTV-PVR-150 low profile with PAL/SECAM tuner) and simply record it on my PC/Mac/Linux box. [I've actually done this from NTSC VHS tapes to MPEG-2 using a PVR-150 capture card on a Ubuntu Linux box.]

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