Canada's most affordable and flexible Beta To DVD service.

  • A personal service by a videographer with 10 years of video experience.
  • Costs just $15 (for USB)/$20 (for DVD) per 60 minutes of Betamax video; extra copies are just $12.  Lowest professional transfer prices in Canada and the USA, but with the highest quality.
  • Turnaround time of 2-4 days for 6 hours or less.  6.5 - 10 hours require up to 7 days.  More than 10 hours will require additional time.
  • NTSC/PAL/SECAM Betamax and Super Betamax to DVD or Computer file.
  • Resume reels of actors, camera operators and producers provided for TV, movie industries and casting agencies.
  • Verbatim AZO DVD's used for all DVD transfers.

Transfer Your Beta To DVD Today!

Television System

Beta Type

Other Requirements

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Betamax/Super Betamax/Enhance Definition (ED) Betamax

Introduced in 1975, Betamax was the first successful consumer video tape format on the market.  By using a wider track width and threading design that put less strain on the tape than it's competitor, VHS (introduced in 1976 by JVC), Betamax offered a higher quality picture. 

Unfortunately one of the drawbacks to Betamax in Canada and the US was it's one hour running time (in the UK and France where PAL/SECAM was used, this was not an issue, since with the TV standards the tape ran slower and allowed for a 2 hour, 10 minute recording time) and only one recording speed.  This was due to Sony's demand that the tape be the size of a paperback novel, and was able to fit in a pocket.  When VHS came out in 1976 it's best playback mode (SP) offered a minimum 2 hour record time, while in its worst mode it could record up to 10 hours. This allowed studio's to issue 2 hour movies on VHS, while the average consumer could set the VCR to record a sporting event or multiple shows without having to worry about running out of tape.  In 1977 Sony rectified this error by releasing a Betamax that could record and play back both the original B1 speed, as well a new BII speed that moved the tape across the heads at half-the-speed of BI, but at the same time cut down the picture quality (albeit, the picture quality was still better than VHS offered even on it's SP speed).

In 1979 Sony introduced yet a third speed, BIII.  With this speed Betamax players/recorders could record up to 5 hours of video on a L-830 tape (one company has even released a L-1000 tape that could record up to 6 hours in BIII mode).  Unfortunately this was a little too late, even though Betamax managed to hang around for another 23 years (yes, it lasted in Japan till 2002, even though in North America Betamax had all but disappeared by 1995).

In 1983 Sony introduced a revolutionary system for Betamax.  Up to this point Betamax had relied on it's linear audio, whether mono or stereo, to provide sound, but due to the speed of the tape passing over the record/playback head, the audio could range from clear (in BI) to very muddy (in BIII).  Because VHS moved it's tape past it's head at a faster speed, VHS was able to offer better sounding linear audio, even in it's SLP mode.  Due to this problem, Sony introduced Beta Hi-Fi which encoded an FM frequency carrier within the video track.  Hi-Fi offered a 500 kHz difference in signal quality for Betamax, and did not rely on the speed of the tape in order to give high-quality audio.  Unfortunately, VHS Hi-Fi was never able to match this, as it only offered a 150 kHz difference between it's linear and Hi-Fi audio.   

In 1985 Sony introduced Super Betamax in an attempt to deliver a death blow to VHS.  Regular Betamax players could playback Super Betamax recordings, although the picture would be over modulated.  This would make area's of the picture, where it went from light to dark rather quickly, sparkle.  In 1988 Sony brought out the Enhanced Definition (ED) Betamax format.  This increased the luminance channel to a level that surpassed even the best broadcast equipment out there.  Unfortunately Sony priced this new version of Betamax at a level where most consumers simple could not afford it, but a number of professionals and even a few TV stations started to adopt the ED Betamax as a cheaper alternative to the broadcast level Betacam and Betacam SP decks.  Of course, in order to obtain this higher luminance, a different tape was required.

One thing to note, even though ED was considered to be broadcast quality and it used the same metal tape as Betacam SP, the way the information was recorded, ED Betamax is incompatible with Betacam SP, just like Betamax and Super Betamax, even using the same ferric oxide tape that non-SP Betacam used, are incompatible with Betacam/Betacam SP, due to all three Betamax recording the signal in the composite format, and both Betacam's recording in component format.

By using a Sony SL-HF2100 I can transfer you Regular and Super Betamax tapes by S-Video to a Canopus ADVC-300 that converts your Beta video to a digital DV-AVI/MOV.  I have also used a Blackmagic Intensity Shuttle to transfer Betamax tapes to 10-bit YUV Uncompressed AVI's via S-Video.  If you would like 10-bit Uncompressed AVI's of your Betamax tapes, please just ask.

Resolution Of Betamax/Super Betamax

Regular Betamax's luminance bandwidth ranged between 3.5 and 4.8MHz, while it's chroma was stored at 688kHz.

By comparison VHS's luminance bandwidth ranged between 3.4 and 4.4MHz, with it's chroma was stored at 629kHz.

Super Betamax's luminance was increased to a range of 4.4 to 5.6MHz while retaining the 688kHz chroma.

Enhanced Definition Betamax luminance ranged from 6.8 to 9.3MHz, while retaining the 688kHz chroma.

How To Request A Betamax/Super Betamax/Betacam SP Video Transfer

Please fill out the form at the top of the page and I will get back to you with in 2-3 days with an estimate.  If you are not sure of how long the tapes are.  Please be advised that I will not transfer copyrighted, pre-recorded tapes (i.e. Star Trek : The Motion Picture), as I will not be involved in blatant copyright violation.  However, if you have a letter or some other form of permission from the copyright holders giving you permission to have me make a copy or X number of copies, then I will transfer the tape, but you will have to get that permission before any transferring is started!  If you have recordings that are of a very personal nature, I do ask that you let me know this before placing the order. 

Transfers of Enhanced Definition Betamax tapes are currently unavailable.

Transfers To DVD

All DVD transfers use Verbatim AZO DVD-minus-R discs.  I've used Verbatim for many years and these discs are, by far, the best discs.

Transfers To USB

Nearly all customers take video files on a USB stick or hard drive now (depending on file size).  The standard file format that I provide is DV-AVI which uses 13GB per 60 minutes of video.  DV-AVI's are good files for archiving and can be used in the majority of PC and MAC editing programs (I work with Windows, but I can convert a DV-AVI to a DV-MOV if you use MAC's more and prefer MOV's for MAC's).  DV-AVI's can also be played back through most Video Playback programs like VLC or Windows Media Player.  You can also request MP4's that you can load onto a USB stick (formatted in the FAT32 file system) that will allow you to plug the USB stick into a modern TV, Blu-Ray/DVD player or game console.  

Besides DV-AVI's and MP4's, you can also get your videos on Hard Drive in either 10-bit Uncompressed AVI or 8-bit Uncompressed AVI (or just like above, 10-/8-bit Uncompressed MOV).  Uncompressed Files use 100 GB of space per 60 minutes of video.  

Just be aware, for DV-AVI/MOV's and Uncompressed AVI/MOV's, Hard Drives will need to be formatted into exFAT, as FAT32 formatted USB Key's and Hard Drive's will only allow files of up to 4GB to be transferred.  FAT32 is a file system from the 1980's, and in the 1980's the creators of FAT32 thought that people would not need to move files any bigger than 4 GB (so only about a 20 minute DV-AVI file could be sent to the USB stick/hard drive at a time).  However FAT32 allows both PC's and MAC's to read and write to a drive (which is why you'll find the majority of USB key's sold in stores in 2020 formatted in it already).  exFAT is a modern, updated version of FAT32 that allows for larger files to be transferred, but is compatible with PC's, MAC's and modern game consoles like the PS4. 

Transfers To Other Tape Formats

Options include NTSC Regular/Super Betamax to NTSC S-VHS, VHS, DVCPRO and Mini-DV..

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