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Hope this helps
on February 28, 2011
My system: Toshiba L505 laptop with AMD dual core processor & Win 7
My person: Middle-aged guy who has been swapping out guts of computers and dealing with software issues for 2 decades.
I had been waiting for a gadget like this for a long time. A few years ago, you would have had to buy a box to do this job, so I was pleased to see an inexpensive way to get this done. I really read the reviews thoroughly before buying this item, so I wanted to address some of the issues that worried me when I read them.
First, if you used a tape that cost you $2.98 for 17 of them, don't be foolish enough to think that turning the video digital is going to perform magic tricks. My old camcorder tapes were expensive master tapes, used with a high-end [for the time] Panasonic PV330 camcorder. When I captured video from tapes of lesser quality, it was immediately evident.
I read people saying that they experienced out-of-sync conditions. With my Win 7 system, I saw no such thing. Then there are installation and documentation issues. The documentation is quite lacking, especially when you consider the problems that some users mentioned. Primary among these was - the first time I installed the software, I had already plugged in the device. When you do this, Windows automatically searches for a driver - and will find one! When you start the software installation, the first step is to load a driver from the disk. Don't do it! If windows has already loaded a driver, SKIP this step, otherwise it will really mess you up! After I had to go back and restore my computer back to an earlier date, I let the win driver load, loaded up the CD and skipped the driver on it and everything was fine. Also, there will be a green bar across the bottom of the screen in the software where you view the captured video - so like one reviewer already said, just close the software, start it up again, and everything is fine. That's where the documentation comes in - they have no business not addressing these issues in their manual. Granted, there isn't much to this product, but issues like these need to be addressed so the user knows that she/he is not doing something wrong. With the driver, I think we have gotten so use to the installation taking care of conflict issues that we don't even think about this stuff any more.
As far as the software is concerned, it is pretty rudimentary stuff. I always capture in the MPEG (DVD) format on to an external drive, 'cause the files are big. For editing, the Ulead stuff isn't worth too much - in fact I've had it stop working all together a few times, so I don't use it. Actually, Win 7 has enough built in do do most of the flat-out basic editing and burning. Just capture the video, close down the One Touch (the file will already be saved in whatever folder), and use whatever editing software you want. Also - if you are using software that lets you capture, I don't think you have to use the button on the VC500.
Sorry about all the blabber, but there are problems with this gadget, but they can be worked around. It's a shame that there is any guessing involved. And for me, it's worth the 30 odd bucks to capture 20 year old videos of the kids on a DVD.