Video Transfer and Logging Services

Video Transfer--all formats

Can you still play your old videotapes?

The boxes of tapes in your basement or closet may be deteriorating much faster than you think. You will have no better chance of transferring them successfully and for a reasonable cost than today.

Do you know what you have in your collection?

Don’t have time to watch all those tapes, discs, or files to find out? We can watch your programs and create full, searchable indexes.

We are happy to advise you on your project. Please contact Sara Chapman, /
(312) 964-5020
935 W. Chestnut St. Suite 405
Chicago IL 60642

Why trust Media Burn to transfer your footage?

Quality Control and Value: Because your footage is precious and you can’t afford to lose it.

Those cheapo places are fine, if your content is fine and you have the time to double check the work. Many tapes now suffer from sticky shed and other forms of deterioration, but there’s no way to tell without watching them play in real time. Rarely do the cheap places watch the content as it transfers. Our staff watches every moment of every tape to make sure it transfers correctly and will repeat the work until we can get a clean version. You will have the peace of mind of knowing that the entire tape transferred successfully in the best quality possible.

Expertise and Personalized Service: Because you don’t have the time to become an archival expert, you just want access to your footage without any hassle.

Media Burn is a boutique footage transfer service that provides highly personalized attention to your project. We make it very easy for you to get what you need without a lot of time and effort. We will advise you on file formats and storage methods to fit your specific needs. Our transfer and preservation methodologies correspond to the highest national standards and have been recognized with grants from the National Archives and Records Administration, the National Endowment for the Humanities, National Endowment for the Arts, and others. We have twelve years of experience transferring tapes, and our happy customers include broadcast professionals, filmmakers, arts organizations, and major corporations.

We’re a 501(c)3 nonprofit: Because your money goes towards preserving documentary films and making them accessible to everyone.

By hiring us, you’re supporting Media Burn’s efforts to preserve independently produced media and to make our collections available for free to global audiences.


We are based in Chicago, Illinois. We are happy to receive your tapes in person or as a shipment. (Please contact us to discuss your project prior to delivering tapes.)

We take credit cards, Paypal, checks, and cash, and will bill you upon completion based on the actual running time of your footage.

Media Burn can transfer most professional and consumer cassette and disc-based video formats:

3/4″ U-matic
Digital Betacam, Betacam SP, Betacam SX, Betamax
Hi-8mm, Hi-8mm HiFi, Video-8
VHS, S-VHS (All regions: NTSC, PAL, SECAM)
mini-DV, DVCAM, DVCPro

Standard video transfer rate: $70 per footage hour plus $5 setup fee per item. This includes the creation of 2 file formats per tape (usually a larger preservation master for archiving and a compressed file for online viewing or sharing) on a hard drive. We can also upload the files to your ftp site, Dropbox, YouTube, or other site.

Note: Tapes that are unplayable due to extensive sticky shed or other damage will require additional work. We’ll contact you before proceeding. We do not treat mold.

Add on options:

Hard Drives: If you don’t provide your own, you can purchase one from us. (Pricing will vary depending on what we have in stock.)

DVD creation: $15 per disc. We can create DVDs in addition to digital files. The standard per-hour video transfer rate applies before the cost of creating the discs.

Footage log: $15 per content hour. We can write up a searchable index of what was on each of your tapes so you can easily find the clips you need in the future. (Note: not a word-by-word audio transcription.)

Extra file formats: $10 each. For example, maybe you need mezzanine editing files in addition to preservation and access files.


Footage log only, without transfer: $60 per content hour. Do you have time to watch all your tapes, discs or files to find the footage you need? Let us do it and create a searchable index that you can use going forward to easily find the segments you need. (Note: we do not do word-by-word audio transcriptions.)