Digitize Home Videos, Tapes, & Film Before Video Degradation

A close up of a VHS tape

Whether you’re reminiscing in treasured home movies or finding footage of loved ones, there’s nothing like watching old home movies and films. But what you might not know is that many types of older media, such as VHS tapes, 35mm film, and other formats degrade over time. Video degradation can happen in a few ways. Whether due to time, improper handling, or both, degradation affects the quality of your old media formats.

Fortunately, you can potentially avoid film and magnetic tape deterioration by understanding how these situations occur. Here’s a closer look at four common ways media can degrade over time.

Sticky Shed Syndrome Causes Magnetic Tape Deterioration

An old tape reel displaying video degradation

Often, the degradation of magnetic media happens due to sticky-shed syndrome. Magnetic tapes feature binders that help contain oxide coatings. These binders can break down due to time, improper storage conditions, or both.

Sticky-shed syndrome occurs when moisture from the air interacts with the polyurethane to make the surface sticky. Think of it like dried glue absorbing water and becoming sticky again. Using tapes afflicted with sticky-shed syndrome can damage tape players and the affected media itself.

The best way to stop this situation from causing tape and video degradation is by baking your media. This doesn’t mean baking tapes in your home’s oven. Instead, let Two Squares use its professional-grade equipment and expert-level technicians to bake and dry your media carefully.

Magnetic Tape Deterioration Over Time

Even in normal conditions, older media formats like videotapes, cassettes, and other forms of magnetic media slowly decay over time. Unfortunately, time-related data decay doesn’t just happen to VHS tapes or your favorite cassettes. 

As the magnetic fields inside magnetic media lose their strength, it will result in decayed or damaged data. If left unresolved, these forms of media can become impossible to view or listen to.

The only way to stop further time-based audio and video degradation is by transferring your beloved media to a digital format. Two Squares can convert your audio and video to digital formats, including CDs, DVDs, Blu-Ray discs, or hard drives and flash drives.

Excessive Use

Whether moving your old media or preparing to display it, excessive handling can also cause magnetic tape and film deterioration. While they’re not visible to the human eye, our hands can contain oil, grease, dirt, and other media-damaging substances.

Excessively handling older media can deposit unwanted dirt and grime onto your treasured films and audio tapes.

Preserve Your Home Videos, Tapes, and Film with Two Squares

The best way to preserve treasured media and avoid video degradation is by contacting Two Squares. Our company offers professional-grade media capture and conversion services. We use our tools and knowledge to carefully capture and convert your old films, music, photos, and more to digital formats. Having digitally stored media lets you preserve treasured memories for many years to come.