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on January 23, 2011
I don't normally write reviews, although I read a lot of them and find them useful. So I'm writing this just because i read the bad reviews for this product and almost bought the more expensive ones; but decided on this one to save some money. My worry was that to save a few bucks I was risking breaking a tape or a VCR per the other review's comments.

I am pretty sure the reason they had problems is they didn't use it properly. The instructions are pretty bad, and if you don't use it right it will break a tape and/or mess up your VCR. So here is the way to use it;

the instructions just say open the cover, put in the tape, and close the cover; but its a lot more than that.

1. open the cover, and you'll see two posts sticking up that are spring loaded. It is very important you don't do what I did, which was figure those go in front of the tape, so I pushed them open and dropped the tape so the posts were on the outside of the tape. After experimenting and seeing how they work, I realized those posts go inside the tape, so just put the tape in without moving the posts.

2. and when you put the tape in, be sure the front flap of your VHSC tape pops all the way open. The first time I put in the tape I didn't push it all the way down, and the flap didn't even open at all. Don't force it, but when the tape engages the gear, the flap pops open. The gears are plastic, so fiddle with it, don't force it.

3. Now here is where you can break the tape; the instructions say "close the cover" which is right, but they don't mention that by closing the cover you are actually doing something else; the cover has a gear built into it, as the cover closes those two posts that are inside the tape push forward and out, spreading the tape out and pushing it to the front of the Adapater Cassette. This is how the tape is pulled out of your VHSC and held out so when the tape goes in the VCR it touches the VCR Head. When you slide the cover forward do it slowly, sort of back and forth, with light pressure. If you force it, it will snap your tape!

if you do all this, I think you'll find this adapater is excellent, and will save you a bunch of money over the other ones that are double price, but probably have better instructions.
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on September 11, 2013
Another vote for terrible. I thought I'd take a chance on this adapter, thinking maybe some of the bad reviews had to do with user error or defective products. Nope.

It was really easy to put my VHS-C tape into the adapter. The design of the adapter was actually pretty good. After I got the VHS-C tape in, I tightened the tape as the instructions said (turning the white sprocket on the back of the adapter with my comically oversized thumb), so it was nice and snug when I put it into the VCR. It played for 2-3 seconds, then the brown tape got loose and was eventually eaten by the VCR. Luckily, I was able to corral the tape from the VCR's mouth and still have my cassette intact. Tape was wrinkled in parts though. Like an idiot, I repeated this process two more times, just to see if I'd get different results, and my tape got eaten two more times. I uploaded two photos of the aftermath.

That's it. Easy to insert the little tape into the adapter, but it simply won't play in a VCR. If you have rare memories, I would not advise chancing their fates with this Adapter of Death.
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on December 17, 2013
This is review one of two(possibly). I am pretty screwed on my time frame and when I went to use this converter, the left roller that presses the tape out is missing and there's an obvious broken piece that moves, but does nothing. So the tape only gets pushed out on the right side.

The box the adapter came in was completely sealed and there's no roller or pieces anywhere.

Right now I am even in more of a time pinch to convert these tapes.

I ordered a second one and paid $.80 more than the first one I ordered, and paid an extra $3.99 to have it here tomorrow. Amazon wouldn't replace it for some pathetic reason.

If the item works and does the job it's supposed to, I will update this review.

--------------------------

Second review. New Maxell VHS-C adapter came today. It was the same product but the packaging it came in was newer (I think).

This item didn't have the broken part my first one had and this item worked perfectly. I only had about 1.5 hours of video to convert on 3 tapes, but it worked. For the price, it was worth it.

It's very cheaply made and isn't meant for impatient people.

1: Make sure there's no slack in the tape. I don't know what they consider "slack" but, it can't hurt to do this step. Finger in the gear hole of the VHS-C tape, turn counter-clockwise slowly until you feel resistance.

2: Put the tape in the adapter slowly and with caution, press it down evenly, then know what is supposed to happen (VHS-C tape door flips open) and that the tape is flush inside the adapter.

3: SLOWLY shut the adapter's door with two thumbs with even pressure, be aware that there's two rollers that will extend the VHS-C tape outwards and draw out tape from the VHS-C cassette. Do this SLOWLY in case there's an issue, never force.

For the price this is a 4/5 item. If it was $50, it would be a 2/5 item.
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on December 18, 2013
I was so scared about this due to the other reviews, but I really had no choice. We had some old family videos we needed to see and had run short on time to get them converted. The only option was to buy this thing and use the old tapes.

After reading the horror stories I noticed a pattern... Each complained that they had issues with the film slackening off and then getting stuck in the machine. I found this to be absolutely accurate, and absolutely preventable. For those old enough to remember tapes you know that they are pulled through a head unit that transfers images. Too tight and the film breaks. Too loose and it gets hung up on internal components and creates a mess.

The solution was to very carefully seat the mini tapes (brand didn't matter to me), and then using my finger rotate the video crank slightly to tighten the tape with my finger. I noticed that every time I did this I had no problems. The time I didn't do that we had a rats nest.

So do these work, yes. Are they perfect, no. Be sure to make sure they are seated right and snugged up. That did the trick for me...
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on September 3, 2014
I purchased two of these because the price was right. The door to insert the VHS-C tape wouldn't even open on the first one, so I tried the next. It initially functioned as it should. I was able to insert my tape and put the unit into my VHS player. The adapter made a loud buzzing noise as it played and skipped regularly. About halfway through my tape it quit running. I ejected the adapter and discovered it had eaten my tape!

If you value your VHS-C tapes, don't buy one of these. Find motorized versions, which work just fine. I had one for 10+ years until my son fiddled with it and broke it. Regretfully, I took a chance on one of these manual jobs.

The company I purchased it from gave me a quick refund and didn't even want these defective units returned. I would make a purchase from them anytime—just not for one of these adapters.
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on August 23, 2012
I don't understand why anyone is having issues with this product. You take it out of the box, you read the simple and short instructions, you pop the tape it and shove it into the vcr. Bam! done! To try to avoid problems, I made sure that the tape was wound tightly both on its own and once inside the adapter. I pushed the slide door slowly and made sure it was stretching the tape properly. Two of my tapes were damaged prior to using the product and the adapter was still able to accept them and play them in my vcr without any issues.

Only one time did the product not play. I got worried that it ate the tape. However, I took it out of the vcr and it was fine. I tightened the tape, put it back in and it worked perfectly. For such a low price, I got to save 3 tapes that I was unable to view and now I can share the adapter with friends and family that had been looking for one of these for years.
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Top Contributor: Petson November 26, 2012
i have read several reviewers who complain the adapter broke and/or ruined their tapes. it is a bit tricky to use, but as long as you move SLOWLY it will work fine. when you put the tape in the adapter, you need to put it in gently, do not force it in. as you do that, there is a small plastic bar that will open the front of the VHS-C tape to expose the tape. then when you close the adapter, do that gently and slowly as well since that action causes two rollers to expand the tape so that it fits across the front of the adapter so that it will play in the vcr. as long as you take your time and are gentle, then it will work fine. also, make sure you read the entire description because it is for VHS-C not the 8mm tapes.
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on February 13, 2014
Gift for my dad. I learned how to use it before I gave it to him so I could teach him. Easy to get the hang of. You can't just slap the tape in and slam the sliding door closed. It takes a little effort and a careful hand to snap it into place, and sliding the door closed slowly and carefully is a must as the prongs that come up as the door closes to spread the tape itself seem like they COULD damage/stretch the tape if done too fast. Just read the top review on this product page or look up "VHS-C adapter tutorial" on Youtube to get an idea of the simple steps before you try. Otherwise, it works fine and just as good as the battery powered one that came with the camcorder that's now worn out. Plays in the VCR just fine. Simple, smart construction to be non-powered. Don't be scared to use it and go slow.
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on March 24, 2014
How much can be said about a VHS-C adapter? If you're reading this review, you're probably watching some ancient tapes, or maybe converting them to digital, and you've found that the equally-ancient VHS-C adapter you had doesn't work any longer.

This one does the job well enough
Good:
Manually operated. Pop a tape in, and there's a mechanism attached to the sliding cassette-cover that puts the tape in place.

Bad:
Manually operated. The mechanism for sliding the cover is okay at best. A little finicky about sliding it perfectly straight, and the tape can be a bit hard to get out.

But hey, you probably need one, and this looks to be about as good as it gets these days.
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on April 28, 2014
Handle with care when inserting the cassette and jiggle slightly to help line up the tabs. The compact cassette's door should open up to expose the tape when you push in down if you've aligned it correctly. Make sure the spindle's on the inside of the videotape, and slide the cover SLOWLY back into place, (gently rocking it side to side helps more than just pushing ever harder if it's stubborn), observing closely to make sure it's pushing the tape OUT on both sides.

My best advice: Use an old compact cassette you won't mind destroying to practice on until you've got it down and can load, play, and eject smoothly. It's a quick learning curve and shouldn't take you more than a couple of tries. It's a good product, but not idiot-proof.
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