Disclosure: I was given some credits to convert DVD’s to facilitate this review, but was not compensated in any other way. Also, I’ve probably spent more of my own money converting DVD’s then what they gave me already. All opinions and crazy huge DVD collections are my own.
I’ve always collected movies. I LOVE watching movies. Maybe it’s my forgetful nature, but I can watch a movie over and over and over again, and still enjoy it as much as the first time I saw it. This is evidenced by the fact that in college my roommate and I would consistently skip class and stay home, order pizza and watch the movie Armageddon. This is a fact my husband makes fun of me about on quite a regular basis, since 1) he thinks Armageddon sucks and 2) the fact that we watched it DAILY. When I was in college I had to create a piece of paper with all my movies listed on it for people to “check them out”. I kept losing titles, not knowing who I lent them to. This definitely helped out with that. With the collection my husband and I currently have, though, we have a database program on our computer that lists all the titles and allows us to “loan” them out to people. At any moment I can go to the database and see what people are currently borrowing. In college I had VHS tapes. After I got married and we purchased our first DVD player (which was actually just a Playstation 1), we started transferring the VHS titles to DVD. Now we are in the process of upgrading titles from DVD to Blu-Ray. I’ve owned at LEAST 4 copies of Alice in Wonderland in my life (VHS, DVD, Anniversary Edition DVD, and finally Blu-Ray). It’s similar for most movies that I own, especially the Disney titles. With this vast collection though, and my constant need to upgrade to the latest and greatest, comes expense.
People are always asking me “what’s next the next media format?” We’ve had first the battle between VHS and Betamax, then Laserdisc (remember those huge things???), then DVD, then the battle between HD DVD and Blu-Ray, so what is the next big format? Obviously, it’s digital. I always thought it would be amazing to have a jukebox type device with all my DVD’s so that I could just chose a movie to watch at any time. This is becoming a reality with digital copies of movies. The movie studios are getting super smart with these digital copies too. Several months ago, when you purchased a Disney movie with a “digital copy”, you pretty much had to have iTunes to get your digital copy. As a strict “Apple Hater” I did not like being forced to that format. I don’t use iTunes. I don’t have Apple devices. Those digital copies were lost in the ether for me. Now Disney has wised up and have allowed you choice when it comes to redeeming your digital copy. FINALLY! So, now it comes down to where do I want to store my movie collection? It’s a scary choice. You want to know that your movie collection will be safe, and accessible. I researched, and while my entire music collection is currently stored in Google Play, I’ve opted for my entire movie collection to be stored at www.vudu.com. I’ll let you know why…
Vudu is accessible from nearly any device. I have the app on our Playstation 3, on our Blu-Ray player, on my Roku, on my tablets, even on my phone! If I really need to watch Pitch Perfect again for the bazillionth time while waiting at the doctor’s office… I can.
Vudu has an AMAZING disc-to-digital service. I have to tell you, this is the main reason for my decision. Like I said. I have a ton of movies. Many of which I have not yet upgraded to Blu-Ray. With Vudu’s Disc-to-Digital service I can put my DVD in my computer’s drive, and convert it to a high definition copy of the movie for only $5.00! Not only that, but right now, if I do 10 movies at a time, I save 50% and each conversion only costs $2.50! If I already own the Blu-Ray, I can get a high definition digital copy into my collection for only $2.00! If I were to purchase the Blu-Ray of some of my standard definition DVD’s I’d be paying at least $10/disc, and I most likely wouldn’t be able to watch that movie on every device I own. This is a complete no-brainer for me.
If you don’t have a DVD drive on your computer, or a Blu-Ray drive, you can also take the disc’s to Walmart and have them do it for you there. Since I DO have the drives, it’s just easier for me to make the conversions myself.
The process is super simple. First, if you don’t already have an account at vudu.com, you’ll need to sign up for one. Next you will download the software that will handle the conversion. The good news here too, is that you can try it out for free. Vudu is giving you $2.00 credit on your account to check out your first conversion. If you are anything like me though, you will be hooked, and end up doing at least 10 conversions to get that 50% off! Here’s another awesome thing about signing up now. When you sign up, you will get 5 HD movies ABSOLUTELY FREE! Just for signing up! You are limited to a selection of movies, but still, I was able to find 5 movies that I would definitely want in my collection.
The next step will be to run the software. Then you just stick the DVD in the drive. I usually would have to close out of the actual movie that would start playing on my computer, but then, if the movie is available for disc to digital the software will recognize the movie and give you options for your conversion. You can check to see if the movie is available to be converted on their website. I’d say about 75% of my movie collection was able to be converted. It’s going to take me quite a while to get it all converted, so I figure by the time I get through the movies that are currently able to be converted, the rest will probably become available. I’ve budgeted for 10 conversions a month (only $25 a month!).
So, slowly but surely my entire DVD collection will be available in the cloud. I probably won’t get rid of the actual discs anytime soon, for the same reason we still have a wall of CD’s in their cases. We like having the physical media, but you better be sure that any movie I purchase now will come with a digital copy that I will redeem with my vudu account.
This post may contain affiliate links, which means I receive compensation if you make a purchase using the links.
Sarah Kimmel is a digital parenting coach and family tech expert. She has spent the last 16 years of her career as a Microsoft Certified IT Manager supporting over 100 small businesses. During that time she started Family Tech LLC to help families understand and manage the technology in their home. She has regularly appeared as a family tech expert on KSL News, BYUtv and Studio 5, and has been invited all over the world from tech companies like Lenovo, Verizon, Microsoft, Dell, and Samsung. Find out more on her website SarahKimmel.com