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Recording movies


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I was thinking that some people who have had TCM for many years, have probably recorded thousands of movies that the channel has broadcast...am I right?

 

It would be interesting to know how many titles have actually been played in 20 years (not counting repeats) including short films.  I wonder if TCM itself keeps a running total of that.

 

Thoughts...?

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Well, on DVD, hundreds. On VHS, lots also.

I had a huge walk-in closet of old VHS tapes, but during my most recent move, I decided to get rid of them.  It was hard to part with them, but I realized that I no longer watched most of those titles, not even the ones I thought were important and worth keeping.  I had thought about transferring some titles to DVD, so I could watch them on my computer-- but that seemed like too much work! 

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I have thousands on vhs, and several years ago, started the whole process again on dvd,...so now I have thousands on dvd. I also have thousands i recorded from AMC and FMC, most on vhs, but have replaced many from FMC on dvd.

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Not counting my many, many DVDs and commercially made VHS tapes, I have about 300 tapes with an average of 3 programs on each, and almost all of them are movies recorded off TCM (a rare few are still from the old AMC days, but that's the same thing). Back when I could afford DVR almost all of it was TCM as well.

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We have definitely more than twelve hundred. The number might be over two thousand as we do not have one master list. The vast majority of them were recorded by my fiance over the last nine years.

 

We have a database of information extracted from TCM schedules for use as reference for the TCM Programming Challenge to determine if a movie was shown previously. The schedules used are from August, 2005 to the present. It shows eight thousand, three-hundred-and-twenty-one movies. This is nearly all feature-length movies as few shorts are included on the schedules. 

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I have 1,213 numbered VHS tapes from TV, mostly TCM, dating back to 1994. Many of these have three movies per tape, having used the SLP speed. But I used other speeds as well and I think I have approximately 2,200 movies all told. They consist mostly of Silent, 30s and 40s, with fewer 50s relative to the others. There is a smattering of newer movies (60s-80s and beyond). All tapes are contained in boxes with 78 tapes per box. I don't tape any more. Occasionally, I'll pick a tape at random and play it and am often surprised that they still look remarkably well. I will probably be moving in the relatively near future and I doubt I will be able to take them with me. I hope I don't have to just throw them out. I may try to donate. I would be thrilled to find some vintage movie person (like myself) and give them a  home but it's certainly not likely. It would cost a fortune to ship them, so a reciepient would have come and get them, etc., so real problems do exist as to disposition. As stated above, they date to TCM beginnings, many of the early ones include some of the old features between movies, many of which are no longer shown. Seeing early Robert Osborne intros are sometimes rather fascinating.

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I had a huge walk-in closet of old VHS tapes, but during my most recent move, I decided to get rid of them.  It was hard to part with them, but I realized that I no longer watched most of those titles, not even the ones I thought were important and worth keeping.  I had thought about transferring some titles to DVD, so I could watch them on my computer-- but that seemed like too much work! 

Same here, TopBilled. I had approx. 500 tapes with 3 movies at least on each, on VHS, but got rid of them too. The instructions to transfer them to DVD made my eyes water.

 

Such a waste of money for the tapes and electricity for the VCR. Oh well, better than Vegas. I think. :)

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I have thousands on vhs, and several years ago, started the whole process again on dvd,...so now I have thousands on dvd. I also have thousands i recorded from AMC and FMC, most on vhs, but have replaced many from FMC on dvd.

 

Even though I'm sure it caused me to miss recording some movies that TCM hasn't repeated in the past five years, I'll still be eternally grateful that I didn't start my obsession until I got a DVD recorder.  Those 3000 DVDs take up about half of a linen closet and are easily accessible by date coding and an Excel file, but if the same number of movies had been recorded on VHS tapes, I can't even imagine where I could find room to store them.

 

And while in 2009 there were plenty of good commercial free films on IFC and the Fox Movie Channel, IFC is now loaded with commercials, and the FMC's commercial free 12 hour days are now little more than an endless loop of repeats.  So now I'm down to TCM and a handful of the American Experience documentaries on PBS.  Commercials have no place in the middle of a movie.

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Same here, TopBilled. I had approx. 500 tapes with 3 movies at least on each, on VHS, but got rid of them too. The instructions to transfer them to DVD made my eyes water.

 

Such a waste of money for the tapes and electricity for the VCR. Oh well, better than Vegas. I think. :)

Maybe 15% of the tapes I discarded included titles that are not yet on home video (the ones that TCM airs maybe once every five years if we are lucky).   

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We have definitely more than twelve hundred. The number might be over two thousand as we do not have one master list. 

We are having a rainy Memorial Day weekend where I'm at, so I am using this indoor time to work on a master list-- that is sort of what prompted this thread.  I have three separate groups-- ones I have bought commercially; ones that were given to me as gifts (that I may not really want to keep); and ones that I recorded on DVD because my DVR would start overflowing (and I still have not watched them yet).  

 

When you start making a list, you realize how many duplicates you have.  I am also trying to arrange them by theme, because I figure that if there is an evening with nothing on cable or nothing on Netflix I want to watch, I can get caught up on the ones that I have.

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I hope I don't have to just throw them out. I may try to donate. I would be thrilled to find some vintage movie person (like myself) and give them a  home but it's certainly not likely. 

That's what I went through when I moved in December.  Fortunately, I had some friends that took some-- but I had 1500 tapes, and I am lucky if I gave away a hundred.  It was heartbreaking to throw 1400 of them in the trash bin, so I did it with my eyes closed. It was too painful! LOL

 

I debated putting them in storage and shipping them to the new place (in a different state) but I figured that it would be too cost prohibitive and there was no guarantee that the tapes would survive.  It was one of those cut-your-losses kind of things...

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Hard to be sure, but I'd guess around 2000 burned DVDs from TCM, FMC, and AMC. The AMC DVDs were all  transferred from VHS tapes. I converted over to DVD recording in 2007. I always keep the Robert Osborne intros, and it is interesting to go back to the early days and see an early 60's Robert Osborne looking like a 40-something Robert Osborne. I guess that comes from loving what you do.

 

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I was thinking that some people who have had TCM for many years, have probably recorded thousands of movies that the channel has broadcast...am I right?

 

It would be interesting to know how many titles have actually been played in 20 years (not counting repeats) including short films.  I wonder if TCM itself keeps a running total of that.

 

Thoughts...?

 

 

TCMProgrammr posted on the old boards that TCM does keep a running tally of the films they show and it sounded like they have done so since the beginning.

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That's what I went through when I moved in December.  Fortunately, I had some friends that took some-- but I had 1500 tapes, and I am lucky if I gave away a hundred.  It was heartbreaking to throw 1400 of them in the trash bin, so I did it with my eyes closed. It was too painful! LOL

 

I debated putting them in storage and shipping them to the new place (in a different state) but I figured that it would be too cost prohibitive and there was no guarantee that the tapes would survive.  It was one of those cut-your-losses kind of things...

TopBilled, I had some unique stuff also. I tried to give them away here, but there were no takers. I even tried to give away the blank DVDs I had, when I thought I would transfer them. Again, no takers.

 

I even deleted the painstakingly crossreferenced list I had compiled in Excel, as it was too heartbreaking to come upon. I'm guessing many who 'collect' stuff eventually come to a point in their lives when they tire of it and give the stuff away, or sell it. Or die! :unsure:

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When you start making a list, you realize how many duplicates you have. 

 

We can check with ease if we have a movie and so do not need to record it again. 

 

What prevents us from having a master list is that we save on DVD using several methods. We place one hour only of a movie on DVD if it is a movie which we wish to have at the highest available quality. This means that one movie may be split over as many as four disks. Our normal method is one full movie alone per DVD. We make also compilation DVDs with several related movies on one DVD so that it will play unattended for several hours. It is by this that one movie may have many entries on a master list because it is saved in different ways and is included on different compilation disks. 

 

We find it far easier to have a different database for each type of saving rather than a true master list which would have to be sorted by type each time it is used.

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I might be being dense here, as the only "recording" off TCM I do is using the DVR; do DVD players record from TV now? I know that my DVD player (purchased in like 2004-ish) doesn't have this option.  I usually watch DVDs with the XBOX or PS3-- I know that they don't record from TV. 

 

The only recording from TV I used to do when I was in middle school, I used to watch Nick at Nite every night (I always made sure homework was done by 8pm, which is when Nick at Nite started, first show was "I Love Lucy" which was my favorite.  I made a point of recording the entire "I Love Lucy" series on VHS.  The only problem was that there were commercials and, as I found out later, the episodes were edited.  I found that out after getting "I Love Lucy" on DVD.  I also used to record Lucy specials and I may have a couple Lucille Ball movies recorded off TCM when we had the channel on expanded cable when it first started.  Most of the tapes are in poor condition and I think I may have tossed them.  I'm not sure though. 

 

My entire movie collection is all purchased movies-- I have a couple bootleg movies, but I plan on upgrading them to "real" copies eventually.  I like having the box, cover art and special features.

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I might be being dense here, as the only "recording" off TCM I do is using the DVR; do DVD players record from TV now? I know that my DVD player (purchased in like 2004-ish) doesn't have this option. 

 

DVD recorders are not as common as DVD players but they are widely available.

 

A model which is well liked by many in the av community is:

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Magnavox-HDD-and-DVD-Recorder-with-Digital-Tuner-Choose-Your-Capacity./20710260

 

This model acts similarly to a cable-company-supplied DVR in that it will record to a hard disk for later viewing and it allows the pause and rewind of live tv.

 

The major upside is that you are not charged each month a rental fee or a schedule-subscription fee.. 

 

The major downside is that it does not receive schedule information and so you must set the channel and the start time and end time to record. I do not see this as a great inconvenience as the schedules received by cable-company-supplied DVRs are not synchronized to channels and so it is common to miss a few minutes at the start or end of a movie.

 

You may edit the recording on the hard disk and then burn it to a DVD.  

 

Blank DVDs often cost less than thirty cents each. Cases often cost less than fifty cents each. Cover art can often be found on the Internet and downloaded and printed and inserted into the case for minimal cost.

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I went through a Betamax phase and then switched to VHS, so gave away the 350 to 400 movies or on Beta. When I first started taping on VHS I recorded two or three movies per tape (the reason Beta lost the Betamax vs VHS format battle) but I missed Beta's quality so then taped only one movie per tape, but still managed to accrue 17 large bins of tapes boxed by decade. Including purchased prerecorded tapes, there were probably around 1,500 to 2,000 movies. Add to that around five hundred laser discs and the newer formats DVD and Blu-Ray (about 400 movies).

When I moved a couple of years ago I went through what other posters here mention. I kept about 300 VHS laser discs, and most of the dvd's. Of the ones Zi in't keep, the store bought movies were easily given to Goodwill. It was sad though throwing hundreds of movies in the dumpster - great copies most from TCM.

At the same time, it was refreshing paring the collection down to a few hundred favorites. It also made me question whether what I had been doing was amassing an unwieldy collection or was I simply hoarding? So what is the point of collecting thousands - certainly far more than even heavy viewing can probably justify. I mean I guess I enjoyed collecting because I was a movie lover who grew up before videotaping, when movies were shown on tv cut and interrupted, and a new movie you had just seen would soon disappear for YEARS, before you could hope to see it on tv at all. Your favorite classic before TCM might appear very occasionly or even annually like "Wizard of Oz" so a future then when one could record from tv UNCUT classics on a regular basis (THANK YOU TCM!), a Netflix, cable movies etc made the early world of taping a delight. i think those of us, myself included, went slightly overboard when one could actually own movies. At least that's how I make sense of it.

So my question - why do y-o-u have so many movies? (Especially since we all probably watch TCM

constantly!) How often do you view your collection and do you watch a fave when TCM shows it, even if there's a copy in your collection. (I like watching with the masses for some reason.)

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So my question - why do y-o-u have so many movies? (Especially since we all probably watch TCM

constantly!) How often do you view your collection and do you watch a fave when TCM shows it, even if there's a copy in your collection. (I like watching with the masses for some reason.)

Excellent post.  And what a good question.  I think I got carried away with building my collection of films, but I am happy to have them, because it has been like having my own research library-- easy access to review a title and check something.  

 

When I moved, I was able to really look at what was important (in terms of keeping certain films and discarding others).  I like arranging films by theme, so that I can be independent of TCM's themes.  That is really important to me.  There are certain directors and certain performers who never get a tribute on TCM, and I can put my own groups of films together and look at directors or actors that are of interest to me.  It's almost like taking cards from a deck and reshuffling them into the hand that I want.  

 

Also, it means I am not dependent on TCM's daily schedule-- though I do monitor it closely. I tune in for films I do not have in my collection, or like in the case of the recent Mitzi Gaynor spotlight, I can get the newer commentary.

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My entire movie collection is all purchased movies-- I have a couple bootleg movies, but I plan on upgrading them to "real" copies eventually.  I like having the box, cover art and special features.

 

I just finished watching 12 Years a Slave from a commercial Netflix rental DVD, and it reminded me once again why I much prefer recording myself.  It literally took me five minutes to navigate through all the legal warnings, previews of other movies I couldn't care less about, and screen flashes naming all the subcategories of the studio that actually made the movie (I think it was Fox), before I could finally get to the actual beginning of the film.   With commercial DVDs, you can't simply hit fast forward and zip through all the extraneous blabber, because all you get when you try that is a big fat forbidden symbol.  You feel like a captive audience in your own living room, with a salesman who won't go away.

 

By contrast, when I record a movie, I wait until the original opening studio logo appears before pressing the "record" button, so I can view the film exactly as it was presented to the original movie audience.  I always find it kind of jarring when an independent studio's film is preceded by some modern studio logo with a website at the bottom, since that's the last thing I want to see before watching the movie.

 

And if it's an overnight recording, a few seconds of fast forward cuts through to the movie's beginning.  I'm a big fan of simplicity in technology.

 

The other advantage to home recording is the space saving.  One DVD in a slimline jewel case can hold up to six hours worth of movies, whereas a similar amount of film on a commerical DVD would almost always take up at least twice as much room.

 

As for the extras, they're nice, I guess, but they're not worth the extra expense or room they take up.

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I have around three hundred just on my dvr alone. I've been meaning to transfer them to DVD but I haven't wanted to go through the hassle. I actually pulled out my DVD of "to catch a thief" and it was interesting to see how the tcm format has changed, even the logo in the bottom right hand corner had changed (might I add for the better)

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