VCRs might be obsolete technology, but they still featured some pretty smart engineering. That’s why illustrator and educator Jared Owen put together this in-depth look at the mechanisms that lie behind the VHS cassette flap. It’s cool to see how VCRs loaded and unloaded tapes without tangling them… most of the time.
Be kind and rewind to the 1980s with MoonLambo’s graphic hoodie, inspired by VHS cassette box art. Its made from a soft and cozy mix of polyester, cotton, and elastane for stretch, and is dye-sublimated to keep its looks from fading – unlike that Lethal Weapon tape you rented from Blockbuster that’s been played 1000 times.
These days, most content is streamed. But there was a time when videotapes were the media of choice. Mental Floss takes a trip in the wayback machine to tell the story of VCRs, the epic war between Betamax and VHS, and how the technologies changed everything for visual entertainment.
In the early days of Netflix, they shipped movies on DVD through the mail. Before that, movies came on VHS tapes from places like Blockbuster. Modder Marina Fujiwara was feeling nostalgic, so she decided to rig up an old VHS tape player to stream Netflix shows when a cassette is inserted into its mechanism.
Artist Marina Totino loves to make models and miniatures. While all her work is impressive, her incredible replica of a 1990s video store is our favorite. The store is accurate down to the VHS tapes on its shelves, and a set of mirrors creates an awesome infinite-depth illusion.
RareBird Games created this VR gaming oddity. The game sends players back in time to a Blockbuster-style video store to wander the shelves looking for movies to rent on VHS and DVD. In survival mode, you’ll work to make money for bills and movie rentals, and you’ll even be able to watch some movies inside of the game.
Go back to the 1990s with this fast-paced party game inspired by the iconic video rental chain Blockbuster. The game asks players to act out, describe, and quote scenes from 200 classic movies. Naturally, it comes in a Blockbuster VHS tape case. For 4 to 12 players.
Anyone who lived through the 1990s can tell you that watching movies on videotape was a decidedly lower quality experience than today’s HD and UHD technologies enable. Tom Scott met up with the team from Red Giant to learn how their software can make modern footage look like it was recorded on VHS.
Take a trip back to the 1980s and 1990s with a visit to the Internet Archive’s awesomely retro collection of VHS tapes. The catalog features over 20,000 digitized recordings of old video tapes, ranging from cartoons to workout videos, and everything in-between. While there are some classics, there’s also just a whole lot of weird stuff.
Etsy store NancysJars makes LED night lights out of old VHS tapes. You can customize the LEDs and the picture. The latter doesn’t have to be from a movie, but if it is the shop will do its best to use a tape of that movie to make the night light. It’s powered by AAA batteries.
(PG-13, Gore) Streaming video is killing movie posters and covers. But Entertain the Elk argues that that shouldn’t be the case. He uses arresting VHS covers of horror movies to point out the ways that art and captions can convince viewers to give a film a shot.
The 8-Bit Guy wanted to know if VHS tapes actually made for horrible videos. He compared three versions of Back to the Future: a 1080p digital copy, the same 1080p copy recorded on a high quality VHS tape, and a VHS release from 1985. TL;DW: Noise. So much noise.