Converting Photos, VHS Tapes, Audio Tapes and More to Digital

Genealogy author and educator Thomas MacEntee offers advice on whether you should "do it yourself" or "outsource" when it comes to digitizing family photos, home movies, VHS tapes and more!

Should You Send Photos, VHS Tapes, and Home Movies Away for Digitizing . . . Or “Do It Yourself” at Home?

So what is it about taking on a HUGE PROJECT like scanning family photos and slides, that makes us constantly procrastinate and put it off? Here are few reasons that I’ve come up with:

  • The project is so overwhelming that you don’t know where to start. You are not alone! Remember that the best way to “eat an elephant” is “one bit at a time.” Start small, start with what you can do in one hour.
  • You’re not sure you are “doing it right.” Again, with all the new technology available, how do you know if you are using the right tools? And should you do it yourself or send it out for scanning? And if you take the DIY approach, which is the best method, the best file format for saving?
  • You’re afraid of what you’ll find. This is a tough one that we all face. Yes, there will be tears and memories involved. But that’s why you want these images available for years to come, right? You can manage your photo scanning project in such a way that you stay “on track” and not get distracted by BSOs (“bright and shiny objects”).

Media Digitization – JUST DO IT!

Genealogy author and educator Thomas MacEntee is offering his book Digitization Options for Family Photos as a free download this weekend!

So are you ready?  Well first, let me give you a FREE GUIDE to photo digitization! My ebook Digitization Options for Family Photos Including Slides, Film Negatives, and Home Movies is available on Amazon Kindle for $2.99 – and since I really want you to find success when it comes to preserving your family photos, here is how to get it for free! Click HERE and save the PDF file (800k download).

Next, after reading the guide, determine whether you want to go the “do it yourself” route or send the photos, slides and home movies out for scanning. Each method has its merits! Then use any of the money-saving links below to get started!

MEGA SALE This Week on Media Digitizing Tools and Services

Updated 10:00 am CDT, Sunday, July 22nd, 2018

There are many different choices available when it comes to media digitization services (where you send your photos and other items out to be processed) and to equipment and tools (for the DIY approach). The items listed below are ones that I personally recommend either because I have used them on my own materials OR I have thoroughly researched the item and feel confident as to the quality of service.

Do-It-Yourself Tools

Are you ready to FINALLY scan and organize your photos the EASY WAY? With QromaScan and QromaTag you can quickly preserve your family photos!

Save 25% or more on Qroma Products – AMAZING Tools to Scan and Tag Your Family Photos! Are you STILL sitting on that photo scanning project that you committed to as a New Year’s resolution? Or do you have tons of digital images that need to be sorted and classified? Well I’ve got several products – for both iOS and Mac – from Qroma that you MUST take a look at. You won’t believe how easy these tools make the entire process of scanning, cataloging and preserving your precious family photos.

Sale valid through Tuesday, July 31st. Click HERE for more information, get discount promo codes plus FREE SHIPPING – via Qroma

Flip-Pal mobile scanner: the fast and easy solution to preserving and sharing your old photos and documents. I LOVE my Flip-Pal and most nights I am sitting on the couch watching television and scanning photos with this amazing device! This is the portable scanner preferred by genealogists and family historians around the world. Just $149.99 plus FREE SHIPPING for Amazon Prime members.

I LOVE my Flip-Pal mobile scanner – it is in my backpack or wheelie bag with my laptop wherever I go. I’ve used it to scan family photos when visiting relatives, I’ve even scanned photos in frames on the wall! And I’ve scanned military medals, jewelry and more.

Consider purchasing your Flip-Pal mobile scanner on Amazon instead of directly from Flip-Pal. Why? First, if you have an Amazon Prime membership, you’ll qualify for free shipping. Second, Amazon tends to be more liberal with returns and better with shipping.

Click HERE for the latest Flip-Pal offer from Amazon.

 Save 32% on Jumbl All-In-1 Film, Negative & Slide Scanner at Amazon. Don't miss this deal - this scanner is AMAZING!   I have used it to scan thousands of slides and negatives that were just sitting in boxes around the house. Now I have all my family memories digitized and saved for posterity. Normally $109.99, you pay just $74.99!

Jumbl All-In-1 Film, Negative & Slide Scanner at Amazon. This scanner is AMAZING!   I have used it to scan thousands of slides and negatives that were just sitting in boxes around the house. Now I have all my family memories digitized and saved for posterity. Priced at just $89.99 USD and get FREE 2-DAY Shipping via Amazon Prime! Click HERE to shop – via Amazon

Outsourcing Services

Save up to 50% on home movie transfers and photo scanning at Larsen Digital! Finally get your family photos digitized and protected!

Save 25% on Home Movie Transfers and 50% on Photo Scanning during Larsen Digital’s Summer Sale! Larsen Digital professionally saves all your video tapes, movie reels, photographs, slides, negatives or audio tapes onto DVD or to digital.  Larsen Digital is offering discounts until July 31st for Genealogy Bargains readers. Make this the year that you preserving the past for the future.

Movie Film Transfers 8mm, Super8 & 16mm

  • Standard Def 480×720 21¢, just 16¢ per foot
    Use promo code GBsd
  • High Def 1080×190 was 26¢ per foot, just 20¢ per foot
    Use promo code GBhd

Click HERE to get started. See Movie Film details at https://m.slidescanning.com/genealogy/movie-film-transfers.html

Photo Scanning

  • 300 DPI: 30¢ just 15¢ per photo
    Use promo code GB300
  • 600 DPI: 45¢ just 30¢ per photo
    Use promo code GB600

See Photo Scanning details at https://m.slidescanning.com/genealogy/genealogy-bargains-photo-scanning.html

Sale valid through Tuesday, July 31st: you must fill out your order form no later than July 31st in order to lock in this special sale price; then you have 7 days to drop off/mail your photos or film to Larsen Digital for scanning. Click HERE for movie transfer sale and click HERE for photo scanning sale – via Larsen Digital

Convert 6 VHS tapes for just $17 USD with HB Media Solutions! "Did you know that 20 years is the average shelf life of VHS tapes? Don’t run the risk of losing the memories contained in these VHS tapes. Memories define who we are… Got a pile of old VCR tapes? VHS to DVD transfer service is one of our most popular transfer requests. We’ll transfer them into digital copies!" For six (6) VHS tapes up to two hours each, regularly $84 USD, now just $17 USD!

Convert 6 VHS tapes for just $17 USD with HB Media Solutions! “Did you know that 20 years is the average shelf life of VHS tapes? Don’t run the risk of losing the memories contained in these VHS tapes. Memories define who we are… Got a pile of old VCR tapes? VHS to DVD transfer service is one of our most popular transfer requests. We’ll transfer them into digital copies!” For six (6) VHS tapes up to two hours each, regularly $84 USD, now just $17 USD! Sale valid through Monday, July 23rd. Click HERE to shop – via HB Media Solutions

Save up to 55% on Legacy Box “Forever Made Simple” - now this is a deal! You’ve seen the ads on Facebook advertising the Legacy Box Starter kit for $75 and they’ll scan everything you can fit in the box they send you. “Just fill Legacybox with your tapes, film, pictures, and audio. Send it in and we’ll send it back with your memories preserved on dvds and optional thumb drive.” Well, you can get that same deal for just $27.99 via Groupon.

Save up to 66% on Legacybox “Forever Made Simple” – now this is a deal! You’ve seen the ads on Facebook advertising the Legacy Box Starter kit for $82 and they’ll scan everything you can fit in the box they send you. “Just fill Legacybox with your tapes, film, pictures, and audio. Send it in and we’ll send it back with your memories preserved on dvds and optional thumb drive.” Well, you can get that same deal for just $28.00 USD via Groupon.  Sale valid through Monday, July 23rd. Click HERE to get started – via Groupon.

Save 89% on Photo Scanning via ScanMyPhotos

Save 89% on Photo Scanning via ScanMyPhotos! Scan up to 1,000 4×6″ photos for just $19! Regularly $179.95, you can get photos scanned at 300 dpi and sent back to you in various formats including DVD, USB flash drive and more! Sale valid through Monday, July 23rd. Click HERE to save – via Groupon

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PLEASE NOTE: The post content above contains affiliate links. This means I make a percentage of sales via these links. This does not INCREASE the price you pay as a consumer. It simply supplements my income so I can continue providing as much free genealogy content as possible through my “abundance model.”

DisclaimerAll prices and offers are subject to change. Some items may be sold out and have limited inventory. Also check to see if you have automated purchase settings enabled, such as Amazon Buy with 1-Click: it is your responsibility to make sure you are getting the correct price for an item before you check out and finalize the transaction.

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Disclosure Statement: I have material connections with various vendors and organizations. To review the material connections I have in the genealogy industry, please see Disclosure Statement.

©2018, copyright Thomas MacEntee.  All rights reserved.

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About the Author

Thomas MacEntee
Genealogy educator and author Thomas MacEntee has been researching his family history for more than 40 years and is the creator of Abundant Genealogy, Genealogy Bargains, DNA Bargains, The Genealogy Do-Over and numerous other web-based genealogy and family history properties.