Safer at Home – Day Twelve


April 14, 2020

Maybe it is us, but a dozen days in “isolation” has flown by. Of course, we don’t have the parenting responsibilities to deal with as our kids are grown and out on their own which I’m sure makes it easier for us. We can focus on things we like or want to do.

I can say that our house has never been cleaner. Kate has wiped down, scrubbed, or polished just about every surface within her reach. And she still has time to study her Italian, read up on George Washington (one of her favorite historical figures), get in her 40 minutes of cardio, and stay connected with our family and friends while continuing to look as sharp and beautiful as she has always been, even though I’m the only one who gets to enjoy that now.

On the other hand, I spend most of my days writing out these blog posts, and working on some video projects that people dropped off. Right now, I’m working on a lovely wedding video that is being pieced together from multiple cameras that captured just about every moment of the ceremony and celebration. I’m pulling clips from each camera and editing them together so it depicts the event as it unfolded. When done, the newlyweds will have a wonderful detailed record of their special day. I think they’ll be pleased. What can I say, I like what I do… and time flies while I’m doing it.

No one really knows what our lives are going to be like as we move forward. But I have to say that I loved the life we had before… I’m loving the life we’re living now… so maybe it isn’t circumstances that control our happiness? As a wise person once said, “You can’t always choose what happens to you, but you can always choose how you react to it.” I hope we can all learn to make good choices.

Michael Ondrasik and Home Video Studio Mount Dora specialize in the preservation of family memories through the digitalization of film, videotapes, audio recordings, photos, negatives, and slides. For more information, call 352-735-8550 or visit our website.

Film or Videotape?


I had an interesting conversation with a prospective client the other day. He came into my office with a videotape and some reels of film and told me that some fifty years ago his father had already had the film transferred and put on the VHS videotape he was holding. He then asked what would be better – transferring the VHS to a digital form or using the original reels of film to do the transfer?

As I thought about my response it made me realize that it is a complex question with multiple issues to consider:

Cost: The cost to transfer a VHS tape up to two hours is considerably less than the cost to transfer 1700 feet of film (which would equate to approximately two hours of footage.)

Condition: Both videotape and film will degrade over time. But what degrades faster? A lot would depend on how they were stored and how often they were played or viewed. Most condition issues that I see in the studio comes from neglect or from faulty equipment that caused damage during playback.

Quality: Here’s the kicker – our technology has advanced exponentially over the last five decades. The methods used to transfer film to video back in the day now seem rather primitive by today’s standards. Even though his film has aged an additional fifty years since his father had it converted to VHS, converting those same film reels again using current technologies may produce a far superior result whereas converting from the VHS tape can only capture the quality of the tape as it exists today… it cannot improve upon it.

Our film transfer process is top of the line. We use a frame-by-frame image capture device which enables us to control or correct color issues, as well as film “noise” issues which can cause a movie to look “grainy.”  For more information, visit this link.

Bottom line, my prospective client has choices. And we’re happy to present him with all the available options and help him to reach the decision that best suits his purposes. And we can do the same for you.

Michael Ondrasik and Home Video Studio Mount Dora specialize in the preservation of family memories through the digitalization of film, videotape, audio recordings, photos, negatives and slides. For more information, call 352-735-8550 or visit our website.


No Correct Answer


A transfer today prompted a question in my mind… It was one of those subjective queries that has no right or wrong answer. It merely asks us to identify a personal preference. Sounds simple enough and yet we humans often delight in arguing why our preference should be the one that is universally accepted.

You know the kinds of questions I mean:

  • Who was the best Star Trek captain: Kirk or Picard?
  • Who would you choose: Ginger or MaryAnn?
  • Who did you like better: Betty or Veronica?
  • What tastes better: Pepsi or Coke?
  • Where would you want to live: Beachfront or Mountains?

And the transfer that prompted today’s blog? It was some behind the scenes footage of Roger Moore filming Live or Let Die. That begs the question: Who was the best James Bond?

Of course everyone is entitled to their opinion but if you have one, you simply can’t understand how anyone else could think otherwise. The choice is just that obvious to you. But the arguments we can get into when trying to defend our positions sometimes defy logic. When you get right down to it, there’s nothing wrong with two people having different preferences.

However, for the curious, the correct answers are:

Picard, MaryAnn, Betty, Coke, Mountains, and Sean Connery.

Let the battles begin.

Michael Ondrasik and Home Video Studio of Mount Dora specialize in the preservation of family memories. For more information, call 352-735-8550 or visit




Congratulations Philadelphia Eagles on your Super Bowl win!  Great game. Takes me back.

I only played one year of football, but oh, what a time. It was my first year in high school and I survived the cut to make it on our Junior Varsity team. There was a lot of pressure on us to perform. Our school had a streak going as our previous j.v. squads had gone undefeated the last 2 years. And so the weight of history was certainly resting upon our shoulder pads.

I was, at various times, an offensive tight end, a defensive end, a member of the punt rush squad, or on the kickoff team. But I mainly tested out different sections of the bench. The good news was that for most weekends, my uniform needed no washing… a fact that I’m sure pleased my mother.

That’s not entirely true. I did get my fair share of playing time.  Mostly in blocking or tackling situations. I always had visions of catching a pass for a touchdown as I always believed it to be my strongest athletic ability. But this was j.v. high school football in the 70s. There wasn’t a lot of passing taking place. So I blocked or tackled.

We did make our school proud, becoming the 3rd consecutive squad to have an undefeated season. But I decided not to try out for the varsity team the following year. It seems football practice ate into too much of the summer and summers were when I made my money for the year as my parents did not want me working while school was in session.

So I had to choose –  play football or have cash in my pocket.  I went with the cash. If only my high school coach had inserted some passing plays into our playbook and used them on game days. My decision… heck, my entire life… might have turned out differently.

Michael Ondrasik and Home Video Studio specialize in the preservation of family memories. For more information, call 352-735-8550 or visit