High-definition, or HD, DVRs make watching and recording TV programming a breeze. They are much easier to operate than VCRs. They also make programming easier and provide a much higher level of audio and video quality. But the VCR still has one advantage over the HD DVR--you can save a tape forever and watch it any time you want. You can achieve the same result through the use of your computer. Follow a few simple steps to download your HD DVR recordings to your PC.
Check the type of video-input jack on your video-capture hardware. Depending on your model, it could be S-video, mini plug or RCA. If you are unsure of the type, refer to your owner’s manual.
Check the type of audio-input jack on your video-capture hardware. Depending on your model, it is probably RCA left (white) and right (red). If you are unsure of the type, refer to your owner’s manual.
Check the type of video analog output jack on your HD DVR. The most common analog video output jack is S-video, but it also may be component video. If you are unsure of the type, refer to your owner’s manual.
Obtain the video and audio cables that match the jack types of your video-capture hardware and your HD DVR. Connect the video and audio cables from the HD DVR to the video-capture hardware.
Launch your video-capture software. (Windows operating systems come with Movie Maker.) Press "Record" on the software, and then press "Play" on the HD DVR.
Wait until the show is finished, then stop recording.
Things You'll Need
If your HD DVR supports HDMI outputs, and your computer supports HDMI inputs, use an HDMI cable to achieve the best quality video transfer.
CDs and hard drives wear out eventually, but you can store your digitized video online indefinitely.
Make sure you have enough hard drive space. You may need an expandable hard drive to capture all the data.
Do not change the channel or interrupt the HD DVR while recording. What you see is what you get. You are recording in real time.
Always obey copyright and privacy regulations when dealing with digital video files.