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REAL beginner


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Hello. I'm a real beginner, past retirement age, and knowing no more than DOS. I run a Dell 5150C with 3 GB of DDR RAM, running Windows XP Media edition.

I have a valuable collection of PAL VCR cassettes, which I want to DVD for safety. I run a new VCR player through a KWorld VCR-USB converter into the computer ... all standard. I also have 215 audio cassettes, run through the same setup from a standard tape player, which should be on CD.

I have problems, and need a kind reader to step-by-step me through the wilderness of technical queries which the software presents (e.g. bitrate) ... please? The problems are -


1. I need to download the DVD codec for PowerDVDSE. It keeps asking for my disc serial no., but as all my installations are downloaded, I don't have one, and it doesn't like the codes I've been issued with. What do I do?


2. The audio goes into the computer very well, and produces an .avi file. Attempts to write this to a CD and play it back just don't work, but I can play the sound from the computer using Media Player.


3. The video/sound goes into the computer, resulting in a picture with some snow running right to left, and over-bright or tinny sound, which sometimes 'whooshes' slightly. This combination writes to a DVD, but the resulting disc shows Audio_TS as being empty, and the Video_TS won't play back.


4. VCR to DVD, for a 26-minute item, takes 3 hours to record/convert, and half-fills a 4.7GB DVD. As most of my VCRs are well over an hour of running time, is it possible to compress them ... I want a film to be on one DVD in the end.


OK - maybe I'm stupid, but where I don't understand what's wanted I've left things at default. Can anyone suggest what I have to do? Thanks a million, if you can.

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