Although Blu-ray may well make it a redundant format, there are still many people that use the Video CD (VCD) format. In addition, since most modern DVD players and PCs can playback the format and the discs are cheap, it will probably still be around for quite some time to come. The drawback obviously is that it can’t hold anything near the capacity of Blu-ray plus the image quality isn’t much better than VHS.
This latter issue can be a major problem when converting video as poorly compressed VCD video can sometimes be actually lower quality than VHS video. One of the best tools to prevent this, and ensure pristine conversions from your DVDs is DVD2SVCD. The program extracts DVD video files to .bin or .cue format but you’ll then need a burner such as Nero to finish off the job. If you need to do several films at the same time though you’ll be better to go with Batch WMV to VCD converter although as the name suggests, it only works with WMV files.
If your DVD player or PC was made within the past 5 years, then the likelihood you can watch your VCDs on them. However, it’s nice sometimes to have a dedicated player that’s attuned to the special needs of the different formats which is what VCDEasy does. It’s a dedicated VCD player, recorder and even allows you to catch still images of your favourite VCD movies. And if you’re going to use a decent viewer, you might as well make a decent menu to play with via VCD Menu Lite which quickly and easily allows you to take stills from your film and add them to a professional looking menu.