If you own an old camcorder and are looking into digitizing your DVC/MiniDV or VHS cassettes then you came to the right place. In this guide I’ll show you how I digitized my old MiniDV cassettes using open source software on Linux. This also works similarly on Windows and Mac OSX.


You will need

  • Videocassette(s) such as DVC/MiniDV or VHS

  • Camcorder or videocassette player

    This is required to play back your videocassettes. You may need an adapter to output audio/video to an RCA or S-Video connector.

  • Capture device such as “EasyCap Capture”

    There are a lot of different devices with the same name. See linuxtv.org wiki page on EasyCAP or other video via USB devices.

  • Computer with USB 2.0 (or better)


  1. Install drivers if necessary

    Most capture devices should work out of the box on recent Linux kernels. See linuxtv.org wiki page on EasyCAP or other video via USB devices.

    On Windows and Mac OSX, follow the devices included instructions or install the included drivers.

  2. Install OBS Studio

  3. Configure OBS

    Add your capture device as a “video capture device” and “audio capture device” to the sources.

    In the settings under the Video section set the base and output resolution to your device resolution. In my case I used 720x576 for 576i. You might also want to change the Output settings. I used the “Indistinguishable Quality” recording quality preset, mkv format and hardware (NVENC) encoder.

  4. Record

    1. Rewind the tape to the beginning.
    2. Start the recording and play the cassette.
    3. Wait until the tape ends and then stop the recording.
  5. Edit and deinterlace the video

    To edit the videos (eg. trim start/end or normalize audio) I use Kdenlive. It also allows you to deinterlace, but if that doesn’t work for you, do the following:

    • Edit the clip properties and set “scanning” to “interlaced” and “field order” to “bottom first”.
    • In the “Render” settings under “more options”, set “scanning” to “force progressive”.

    If you prefer, you can deinterlace the video using ffmpegs yadif filter instead: ffmpeg -i input.mkv -vf yadif output.mp4