Schlock & Roll! Eddie Furlong is so cool! He is HERO!
September 6, 2007 6:48 PM   Subscribe

I need a rather rare video tape copied to DVD or saved as a video file. I don't have the equipment to do it myself and the tape is out of print, only released in Japan, unlikely to ever be released on dvd, and still under copyright. It's official documentation of an American child actor's Japanese music career. It is my 'happy' tape because I always feel better after I watch it. What is the best way to get this copied? Bonus points if it's cheap or free and/or local to Charlotte, NC.

After he became famous in Terminator 2, Edward Furlong had a music career in Japan. His uncle was his manager.

The video is so hilarious, with Furlong singing Doors covers with a cracking voice. You can literally hear puberty set in over the course of the album. The video is poorly shot, covering his promoting of his albums to his fan club and on Radio Stations. I love it when his uncle starts bowing to a DJ so deeply that it borders on genuflection. The poor DJ just wanted to shake hands.

The ending of the video is god awful, a seemingly neverending shot of Furlong walking down a dark corridor in an airport, alone.

And just when you think it's over... they fade back in with the "Making Of The Video".

I love this tape and I watch is often because it's so unintentionally hilarious. I know it sounds mean, but I love it. I'd love to share bits on YouTube, but I have to get it off the Videotape first!

How can i get a copy of this ripped and burned to DVD or saved as video files? I'd prefer not to let go of the tape, I don't want to mail it off as I'm afraid it wouldn't come back. I'd like something local to Charlotte, NC if possible. It's under copyright, so I'm assuming the more legit places won't touch it.
posted by aristan to Grab Bag (7 answers total)
If you're going to spend $150 on this, why not get a Hauppauge TV tuner card?

Bonus - after converting this VHS, you can turn an old computer into a PVR.
posted by porpoise at 7:44 PM on September 6, 2007

I don't have any specific recommendations, but you might try asking on Craigslist or the like if someone has the appropriate equipment and would let you come over and use it, maybe for a small fee.

That way you keep the tape, and probably won't get someone who cares about copyright.
posted by fogster at 8:00 PM on September 6, 2007

Cheap or free? Look over different techniques and check with your more technical/gadgety friends - someone might have the PC equipment, DVD recorder combo, or compatible digital camcorder to do it for you.

If that fails, you might just try some of the conversion services (dunno about NC, but in the Minneapolis yellow pages there are many under "video.") They might just go ahead and do it anyway, particularly since it's an import and out of print. Which may or may not mean anything from a copyright perspective (I'm not at all sure it's really illegal for you to format-shift a copy for personal use), but as you may have noticed people tend to sort of make up their own rules about copying based on what "feels" right. You might get a different answer on the phone versus if you just walked in with the thing and some cash.
posted by nanojath at 9:00 PM on September 6, 2007

(haha, i paid 50 yen for this horrible CD single for exactly the same happy-inducing reason. Please update this thread when you get your tape converted and uploaded to YouTube. MUST SEE IT...)
posted by QueSeraSera at 10:58 PM on September 6, 2007

You just need to ask around. The equipment to do this isn't rare. Anyone with a TV tuner card, or even a halfway-decent DV camcorder (one that supports analog inputs), can do it for you. Once you have it dubbed to MiniDV it's easy to get into the computer, and the MiniDV tape will be a good archive copy to put in a safe place.

You could try asking on Craigslist but I think a lot of people are pretty jumpy about copyright these days, because of the MPAA suing everything that breathes. You might find someone, but it's kind of like the nerd equivalent of buying drugs by wandering out in the street and shouting "anyone got some crack? I want to buy crack!" You'll get noticed, but for all the wrong reasons.

Though, weirder things happen on Craigslist.
posted by Kadin2048 at 11:18 PM on September 6, 2007

I picked up a LiteOn (I think) DVD recorder to replace a very dead VCR for $40 Canadian @ costco a couple months back, hook up a VCR to a DVD Recorder and you're all set.
posted by jjb at 11:28 PM on September 6, 2007

You don't even need to spend $150 for a TV tuner. You can get them for as cheap as $20 (from Newegg) depending on the inputs you need. Then you can use the free, open source program VirtualDub to grab the frames you want.
posted by TheSlate at 10:40 AM on September 7, 2007

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