Anyone who lived through the 1980s remembers the magic of VHS, or “Video Home System” tapes: Watching your favorite video rentals on the couch; easy to use video cameras that could be played back instantly; bootlegged videos passed around by friends. But the first VCR players of the early 1970s used proprietary videotape cassettes. The Sony VO-1600 only played Sony's 3/4-inch U-Matic tape, while the CartriVision played cassettes whose 1/2-inch reels were stacked on top of each other rather than laid out horizontally.

The high price of early videotape players made them primarily attractive for educational or business applications, but in 1975, Sony released a slightly smaller and more affordable player as part of its Betamax line in Japan. Sony expected Betamax to become the industry standard, but unexpectedly, in 1976, JVC launched its VHS system, specifically aimed at home users. VHS players reached the U.S. in 1977, and with the format's longer running time of two hours versus one, its cheaper price, and the wider variety of pre-recorded cassettes available, VHS quickly became the home video of choice. By the early 1980s, the boom in video rentals cemented the format's future—because the economical price of VHS cassettes and players meant less investment for rental businesses and home users, the VHS format surged in popularity over Betamax.

VHS tapes use what is known as the “M” lacing system, whereby loading fingers pull the tape outward from the cassette to wrap around the drum while playing or recording. However, when rewinding or fast-forwarding, the tape is returned to its cassette position, allowing it to rewind quickly. Despite their lower playback quality versus digital formats, VHS tapes still allow an ease of recording and re-recording not possible with DVDs, and much like vintage LPs or new Instagram photos, their scratches and blips give the tapes an aura of nostalgia.

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

The Vintage Knob

The Vintage Knob

The Vintage Knob is an extensive resource on all types of audio electronics organized by manufacturer, from Aiwa to… [read review or visit site]

Most watched eBay auctions    

Robotech Masters Southern Cross Hovertank Toy And Vhs TapesRare What Is Royal Trux Vhs Tape Jennifer Herrema Neil Hagerty Drag City 1991Usb Transfer Convert Vcr Vhs Video Tapes To Computer Pc Record Dvd Capture Win7Lot Of 22 Kids Disney Vhs Movies In Clam Shell, Dumbo, Fantasia, Mermaid, Pan,,,Basketball Coaching Vhs Tapes: Self, Boeheim, WilliamsWrestling Vhs Tape Lot **personal Collection, Sold As Blanks, Wcw, Wwf**Lot Of 11 Bear In The Big Blue House Jim Henson Vhs Video Tapes Lot Of 2 New Sealed 8 Hour Blank Maxell Vhs Tapes Gx-silver T-160Magic Tricks Trick Vhs Tape Lot 10 Tapes Mullica Burt PageGhostbusters (vhs Tape) Sealed!1984 Original BoxPanasonic Ag 170 Vhs Movie Camera With Battery Free Shipping Very Good ConditionLot Of 42 Disney Masterpiece Vhs Tape Movies In Orig ClamshellsNew 10 Pack Sony Hi8 Digital 8mm Video Tape 8mm Sealed Video Tape 8mm Grade Sony Lot Of 15!Lot Of 12 Walt Disney Childrens Animated Video Tape Vhs Movies Videos With BoxesClinton Anderson Feel The Difference Trouble Free Trailering Vhs Tape Bought NewDisney Vhs Tapes Fantasia, Pocahontas, Aladdin, Lion King, Beauty And The Beast16 Episodes Of The Howard Stern Show On The E! Channel Vhs Tape (shatner,takei,) 6 Prerecorded / Blank Vhs Video TapesLot Of 7 Nfl Films Video Vhs Tapes - CompleteRare Vintage Lot Of 27 Mountain Bike Downhill Mtb Vhs TapesNib Blank Vhs Tapes 6 Hrs Ep Sony Premium Grade T120 VhsPanasonic Ag 456 Pro Line Reporter Vhs Tape Camera Bundle Case Batteries ManualLot Of 8 Maxell T-160 Blank Vhs Tape Premium Grade Sealed 8 Hours Singles New!Kiss Lot Of 9 Vhs Tapes:crazy,phantom,exposed Legends Second Coming Unauthor EctSet Of 6 Vhs Tapes 'anne Of Green Gables' Starring Megan Follows8-pack Of Maxell T-160 Blanks Vhs Tape Gx-silver Sealed 8 Hours Singles New!Rare! 1987 Trick Or Treat Vhs Tape- Marc Price Gene Simmons Ozzy Osbourne.The Basement - Rare Horror Big Box Vhs Gore Sov - 5 Movies On Dvd + Vhs TapePanasonic Ag 455 Pro Line Reporter Vhs Tape Camera W/ Hard Case, Battery Bundle.Lot Of 10 Tapes Fujifilm Hqt-120 Vhs Video Cassette New SealedRocko's Modern Life With Friends Like These Nickelodeon Vhs Movie Video 1994Huge Lot Walt Disney Vhs Tapes Disney Movies Kids Movies ! 33 Movies Body Of Steel - Tamilee Webb, Whole Body Fitness - Vhs Tape2 Sony Dvc Digital Video Cassette Premium Mini Dv Video Tape 60 Min/90 MinUnderworld- Action Thriller Drama Movie Dennis Leary Traci Lords Vhs TapeVhs Movie Complete Dirty Harry 5 Tape Set Clint EastwoodLot Of 5 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Vhs Tapes Used Rare 1997 Secrets Of The Titanic Vhs Tape; National Geographic; Near-mint!Babylon 5 The Collector's Edition Tv Series Huge Lot 53 Vhs Tapes 104 EpisodesHuge Lot Of New Sealed Vhs Vcr Sony Maxell Rca Jvc Fuji Kodak Polaroid PanasonicSony Bct-60mla 60 Minute Betacam Sp Video Tape Box Of 9 Napoleon Abel Gance's Silent Masterpiece New Sealed 2 Vhs TapesWonder Woman 26 Vhs Tapes Collector's EditionWinnie The Pooh And Tigger Too Storybook Classics Vhs Tape Walt DisneyLot Of 30 Walt Disney Bugs Life Vhs Movies Kids Children VideosNickelodeon Are You Afraid Of The Dark New Sealed Vhs TapeExisto, Vhs Tape, Independant Film10 Blues Clues Vhs TapesTdk T-160hsbh Premium Quality Hs 8 Hrs Vhs Tape - Set Of 5Vintage Pete Townshend's Deep End Beta Video Tape! Stereo Hi-fi 1986 TownshendHuge Lot Of 23 Children's Disney And Other Classic -vhs Video Tape Movies-Lot Of 3 Vhs TapesThe Clones Of Bruce Lee Movie Vhs Tape Media Home Entertainment [m171]Lot Of 20 Disney & Family Vhs Tapes6 Super-vhs Tapes Sold As Blanks W/rare MoviesSnoopy Peanuts & Charlie Brown Vhs Tape Lot Of 5 Christmas Thanksgiving & More3 Vintage Strawberry Shortcake Vhs Movies,berrykins,housewarming & Meet Ssc Rare Flipside Flip Side Video Fanzine Number 6 #6 Vhs Tape 80's Sonic YouthVhs Movie The Verdict With Newman 1997