Are you ready for the revival of video?

Like the resurgence in interest for vinyl records, video tapes could see a revival according to reports.

 

After the first video cassette recorder (VCR) went on sale at Dixons in 1978, demand for VCRs fell due to the rise of DVD players in the 1990s.

 

But the past few years have seen a huge influx in VHS collectors according to Daily Grindhouse.  Video collectors say films made for VHS look strange when cleaned up for higher-definition DVDs. They prefer the grainer quality of the VHS format, in the same way a vinyl collector might speak about the warmth of a record’s sound.

 

“These are movies that feel too cleaned-up on DVD and Blu-ray, as if they were never meant to look that good. Watching them on VHS is closer to the way the director intended it to look,” Dan Kinem, a VHS collector, told Collectors Weekly.

 

People wanting to reminisce with their old films on their trusty video cassette recorder (VCR) will need a projector to create the full cinema experience.  But modern-day projectors don’t always come with the inputs needed to connect with the older VCR technology.

 

VCRs would not have a HDMI output that can connect to the HDMI inputs in most modern projectors. It is more than likely you will need to use either the composite or S-video ports. 

 

So, if you want to dust off your video classics, you will need to choose a projector carefully to ensure that it has all the inputs that you need.  The Optoma HD36 is a good option as it is bright, has fantastic picture quality but, more importantly, has the plethora of inputs to ensure it is compatible with all devices – both modern and historic.  These include composite and S-video.

 

Composite video cables have a small, metal-tipped plug (also known as a RCA plug) which is usually yellow.  S-Video cables have a slightly larger plug with a series of small, delicate-looking pins jutting out of each end.  If the VCR is really old, it may have a SCART output for which you can get SCART to composite adaptor or cable.

 

You will also need to connect sound from the VCR to the projector via a set of stereo RCA plugs.  These are usually red for the left channel and white for the right.

 

Those that remember, and still have, laser disc players which played vinyl analogue video - the forerunner to DVD - will most likely need to use the SCART to composite adaptor to connect to the projector. 

 

 

Projector technology now has greater connectivity than ever

Projectors have progressed so much since the distant days of dusty acetate sheets on OHPs.  They now have the technology to display from the latest devices and can project a super-sized 100-inch picture on a screen or wall from just a metre away.

As well as computers, set top boxes, Blu-Ray and DVD players, you can now project straight from mobile phones and tablets, stream content from Roku, Apple TV and Google Chromecast, share photographs and video directly from cameras and camcorders, present straight from a USB stick and connect to the latest games consoles.

But it is not just the connectivity that has improved, they are designed to simply plug and play – dispelling the myth that projectors are difficult to set up.

When choosing a projector, you should look at which devices you would like to connect it with.

Multiple HDMI ports make it easy to switch between sources at the touch of a button.

MHL allows a projector to be turned it into a smart display by connecting a smartphone or tablet with a single cable to play games, stream videos and share photos on the big screen.

USB Plug and Play allows presentations to be viewed straight from a USB stick.

Most projectors have optional wireless.  This uses a WiFi dongle to allow you to connect and display presentation materials wirelessly from a laptop, PC or Mac and mobile device.

Full 3D projectors can display true 3D content from 3D Blu-Ray players, 3D broadcasting and the latest generation games consoles.

Many Optoma projectors have powerful built-in speakers which save you the cost and time of installing external speakers.  But you still have the option of connecting to external sound systems through the audio output if you want the cinema quality surround sound.

The projector is not just for offices and schools.  You can get a super-size screen at home to play action-packed games or watch TV shows, live sports and movies.  And with the short throw option allowing you to place the projector so close to the screen, it is suitable for small or large rooms.