How to Record From DVR to VHS

By Ben LeDoux

Updated February 10, 2017

Transferring video from DVR to VHS is a very simple process that requires nothing more than a few cords and making sure your television channels are correct.

The setup

Make sure everything is plugged into the right slots. Start by plugging the VCR into the television by locating the output cables (either A/V red, white and yellow cables or the single S-video cable) on the VCR and plugging it into the corresponding spot on the television. After turning on the VCR and the television, find the operating channel for the VCR (The best way is to insert a movie, press play, then scan for the channel which plays the video).

Many televisions have different ways of viewing the video, so try channels 3 or 4, or check to see if your television has a Video button and search through those until you find the channel. Once you find the channel, you can press "stop" on the VCR.

Locate the output cables on the DVR and plug those into the input location on the VCR. Once connected, search through the VCR's own set of channels to find where the DVR is located. Try turning the DVR on, play the video, and search for the channel which displays the video, which most likely will be a Video channel or channels 3 or 4.

For this next step, you will need to have a recordable VHS tape inserted into the VCR.

Locate on the DVR the show that you wish to record. Once you have found the show, select it to play and, when it starts up, immediately press the "Pause" feature on your DVR. On the VCR, click the "record" button and then go back and resume the video on the DVR. The video playing on the DVR is now recording onto the tape as the DVR is directly plugged in to the VCR. Once your recording finishes, you can click stop on the VCR and rewind back to see your show recorded directly on to the VCR.

Items you will need

  • Television with a video plug-in

  • VCR

  • VHS Tape

  • DVR


Many DVRs are now specially encoded, which prevents some television shows from being reproduced. You will notice that either a) the video simply will not play, or b) the picture will be pixelated or have color problems. There is no way around this issue and simply means the show cannot be recorded.