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File Format
Name VHS
Released 1976

VHS tape

VHS tape

VHS (Video Home System, originally Vertical Helical Scan) was the most used consumer-level video system in the world (at least until DVDs came along), defeating Betamax in the race for worldwide use, mainly because JVC allowed licensing of the technology. VHS uses vertical helical scan, has limited audio and video bandwidth, signals are stacked as layers on the magnetic tape and is an Color-under (Heterodyne) video-system.

Versions of VHS exist for the NTSC (used in the U.S., Japan, and some other countries) and PAL (used in most of Europe and some other countries) television standards.

The standard calls for a particular recording speed for which tape durations are calibrated (e.g., a T-120 tape stores 120 minutes of recording at standard speed), but most VCRs support nonstandard slower speeds which increase the amount of recording which can be done on a tape at the expense of quality. SP denotes standard play, LP long play (half-speed, so capacities are doubled), and a number of recorders support a still-slower speed designated variously as EP (Extended Play) or SLP (Super Long Play), which gives a recording capacity of three times the standard speed. A particular VCR may support some subset of these speeds for recording, selectable by a control setting. Most VCRs will automatically detect the speed a program was recorded under (even if it's different from the speed the previous item on the same tape was) and adjust its playback speed accordingly.


Converting VHS to other formats

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