Having had this discussion before.
You have to feel for folk that encounter this. They usually go through a handful of capture things before they get the hint it's not a sure thing. The source video if it's a little too far off can go BW or worse. The DVR I noted was just one of the things I've used over the used but it's among the best solutions I have for cranky video sources.
Those DVD recorders are also pretty good and run about 50 bucks when you can find them.
If you want to compile DVDs why not take the content right from the DVD as it's already in digital form? Your top post noted VHS and those have issues with tracking (link follows about at http://obsoleteskills.wikispot.org/Adjusting_the_tracking_on_a_VCR )
I rarely find folk to want to deal with all this old nonsense.