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Roxio Easy VHS to DVD 3 Plus review

Roxio Easy VHS to DVD 3 Plus is a decent package, let down by poor software on the Windows platform.

Roxio Easy VHS to DVD 3 Plus review
(Image: © Roxio)

Our Verdict

Roxio Easy VHS to DVD 3 Plus is a versatile converter that is easy to use and produces high-quality results. When it works. Roxio's software has real issues with the newer versions of Windows.

For

  • Easy to use
  • Compatible with PC or Mac

Against

  • Roxio software is poor
  • Customer support is poor

Roxio Easy VHS to DVD 3 Plus aims to make the transfer from VHS tapes to DVDs easy. Indeed, it contains all the kit you need, in a single inexpensive package - including a bridge cable, some blank DVDs, and instructions on downloading Roxio's own software for PC or Mac. Using this, you can even enhance the footage you transfer and add extra items, like menus, to your DVD. On paper, it looks like one of the best VHS to DVD converters, but in reality it suffers from issues with the software you are required to download. And while it sounds obvious, you should also make sure that your home computer has a DVD writing drive, or this will not work.

Roxio Easy VHS to DVD 3 Plus has options for both composite and S-Video inputs. This device connects to any available USB 2.0 port on your laptop or desktop, while the composite RCA connections connect to your video device. Because it's USB 2.0, the copy speeds are limited, so this is a slow process. As long as your device has composite outputs, the Roxio VHS to DVD 3 Plus can capture video from it. And you can use the hardware with any other program capable of recognizing and converting from analog devices like your VCR. We strongly recommend finding a different VHS to DVD software, like OBS Studio for Mac or PC, if you have difficulty with Roxio's own software.

Many users have reported issues installing Roxio's own software, especially on PC, and have completely failed to make it work in a number of instances. Even reinstalling the software doesn't seem to fix it. Roxio's customer support has been slow to deal with it in many cases, creating confusion and anger among many customers. It wasn't always this way, so the problem likely lies with compatibility on newer versions of Windows. Mac users have reported fewer errors.

When Roxio's software does work, it's fairly easy to use. It has options to directly burn from a VCR to a DVD or to transfer VHS tapes to your PC. If you choose to save the video to your PC, you can upload the digital copy to YouTube, if you plan to do this. You can also transfer the digital copy of your VHS tape to mobile devices like the iPhone, or iPad. There is no restriction on ripping copyrighted material with this converter, which is handy for movies not available on DVD, but be aware that there are severe restrictions on copying and distributing copyrighted material.

(Image credit: Roxio)

Once you’ve captured the video on your VHS tapes, Roxio Easy VHS to DVD 3 Plus gives you several options to customize and personalize it. The video-editing module of this software gives you the ability to cut away unwanted footage and to add effects, transitions, titles and credits to your project. You can even bring in outside audio to add to your video project, which is great if you want to add background sound or music to your converted footage. You also have the ability to build your own DVD menu and add chapter breaks so your audience can have the same experience they’re used to from a commercially produced DVD. 

During our testing phase, we converted a 40-minute videotape and burned it onto a disc. It took this VHS to DVD converter exactly 40 minutes to accomplish this task, which is because it has the ability to capture, convert and burn videotapes to a disc simultaneously.

Our video experts found that the quality of the newly burned DVD was among the best of all the VHS converters we reviewed. There was some distortion around the edges and some digital blocking issues, but on the whole, this product creates a high-quality conversion that won’t distract your audience from the show.

You can also use this software to create stand-alone video files on your computer. You can choose to export your converted videos as MPEG1, MPEG2 or MP4 files. These video format options are fine as far as they go, but other programs we reviewed allow you to export in up to seven different formats.

(Image credit: Roxio)

The program also allows you to optimize your converted videos for playback on specific devices like a computer or iOS and Android devices. You have the option of uploading your videos directly to Facebook and YouTube. Another particularly interesting feature is its ability to convert vinyl records to CDs and MP3s too. Assuming you have the correct hardware, Roxio Easy VHS to DVD 3 Plus lets you breathe new life into your old LPs. You can then use the software to burn CDs or export the music as MP3s. There is also an option to create CD labels and organize your home movies with the Roxio software.

There is a large selection of help options at Roxio.com, although they rarely help when it comes to problems installing the software itself. It has a large library of FAQs and knowledge-base articles that can answer most questions you might have about the conversion process. But if it doesn’t, you can leave a comment in the user forum or submit a support ticket with your question for the customer service representatives to respond to later. You can call the customer support line or open up a live chat with a customer service representative for instant help.

Should you buy Roxio Easy VHS to DVD?

Roxio Easy VHS to DVD 3 Plus is a versatile tool that you can use with a variety of software and operating systems, and for an assortment of functions. This is a user-friendly VHS converter to preserve your videos, and it produces high-quality results. However, we can't overlook the fact that the software is widely regarded as difficult to install and run, and that Roxio's customer support is far from adept at dealing with it. This latest version gets you two blank DVDs to burn onto too, which is a small bonus.