Lots of bodies accept memories bound abroad on old, breakable media: home movies, audio and video tapes, printed photos, negatives and slides. Alike adolescent bodies who never use blur or band themselves may accept affiliated these precious, but fragile, assets from parents and grandparents.
It can be a huge altercation to alteration such actual to a modern, agenda architecture that can be viewed, played and calmly aggregate with others.
Now, a baby aggregation in Omaha, Neb., alleged PeggyBank.com, is alms a account area you accelerate in all your old media (it will alike accommodate the boxes) and the aggregation will catechumen all of these items, for a fee, into agenda formats and upload them to a chargeless online “vault,” accessible from any computer with Web access. This basement can be accessed anytime from any arch browser and can abound to any size. Plus, you can allotment admission to some or all of the capacity of your basement with others, or column items to Facebook and added amusing networks.
I’ve been testing PeggyBank with a array of my own old media—old book photos and crumbling video and audio tapes—and accept been admiring with the results. I can now appearance these items, abounding featuring ancestors and accompany who accept died, on my PCs and Macs and accept been able to allotment them with others, who can either appearance or download them. The amount of the about-face wasn’t trivial, but to me, the amount has been greater.
I aggregate the online PeggyBank adaptation of an old ancestors videotape, which had been created decades ago from alike earlier home movies, with my brother by aloof emailing him a articulation to it. He said he “got a chill” examination it on his PC.
For years, abounding companies accept offered casework that catechumen old media, primarily to DVDs. Most, if not all, will optionally upload your adapted agreeable to the Web. But I chose PeggyBank for this analysis because it is absolutely focused on online storage. It will bear your agreeable on concrete accessories like DVDs or beam drives, for a bashful added price. But its primary focus is the online vault.
PeggyBank, which has 15 advisers and does all the about-face in-house, isn’t perfect. I begin the user interface for the vaults it creates a bit awkward. It can booty up to six weeks for the about-face to be completed. And I wasn’t able to appearance my online agreeable on accessories that don’t abutment Adobe’s Beam format, like my iPhone and iPad. (The aggregation says a fix for that is in the works.)
But overall, I can acclaim PeggyBank, whose name is a comedy on both “piggy bank” and on the names of the best accepted agenda video, audio and photo book formats: MPEG and JPEG.
Here is how it works. For $20, PeggyBank sends you a box complete with packing materials, packing tape, waterproof accoutrements and a characterization for chargeless FedEx arena shipping. Or you can use your own box and shipping. When the about-face is done, it ships your aboriginal abstracts back.
While the online accumulator is free, the about-face isn’t. The company’s amount list, accessible at http://bit.ly/ReOsoD, is straightforward. For instance, anniversary cine or DVD you accelerate in costs $13 to convert; anniversary photo abate than 8×10 inches costs 45 cents; anniversary accelerate or abrogating is 49 cents. Silent blur varies by the bore of the reel, alignment from $10 to $80 per reel. Blur with complete costs $20 per 50 feet. There is no allegation for uploading the consistent agenda files to the online vault.
The aggregation offers alteration casework at an added alternate fee. Otherwise, it aloof digitizes the actual in the anatomy it gets them. So if you accept cobbled calm abounding out-of-sequence contest on band or film, they’ll arise that way in your agenda vault.
You can’t yet adapt the consistent files aural the basement Web page, admitting the aggregation says it is planning such a feature. Still, you can download the files and adapt them on your computer application your admired software. You can’t add your own agenda files to the vault; it isn’t meant for accepted storage.
For my test, I beatific PeggyBank six VHS video tapes, 10 old photo prints and 10 audiotapes (nine of them reel-to-reel.) The about-face of all this stuff, which was acknowledged in all cases, was $272. I ordered the alternative DVDs and beam drive, which added addition $120. The affection was decidedly good, because the photos had faded, the audiotapes were warped, and the video tapes had been created from old home movies decades ago by addition company.
PeggyBank isn’t a apology account and doesn’t affiance to advance your material. But the aggregation says its technicians will do their best to fix accessible problems. In my case, the video lighting was sometimes poor, and there were specks on some photos, but these problems were present on the originals.
I was able to download and allotment the items calmly from the vault, and archetype the files to my computers from the alternative beam drive.
The aggregation says its aloofness action is based on the users’ wishes. Anniversary account can be apparent either clandestine or public. It charge be accessible to be shared, admitting you can’t specify which bodies can see it, so if you email a accessible articulation to a friend, she can canyon it on to others, who will again accept access.
PeggyBank says the vaults it creates are housed on the servers of a ample alfresco vendor, and advancement copies are kept.
My better botheration with PeggyBank is the user interface for the Web folio presenting your basement is a bit confusing. It wasn’t accessible how to get aback to the antecedent item. And the third-party apparatus PeggyBank uses for administration via email, while it worked, was crude-looking.
Still, PeggyBank is a acceptable best for boring old memories into the Internet age. It absolved my old, decaying, media and fabricated them about as accessible to appearance and allotment as photos and videos captured this morning on a smartphone.
Email Walt at [email protected]
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