21 Best Nostalgic VHS Video Camera Effects

Video Effects March 16, 2019 6 min read

A VHS effect is a textured, distorted effect that mimics an old analog video recording on tape cassette. Creating this vintage effect brings a nice old-school discord to an edit.

When’s a good time to use these glitchy and retro effects? When the atmosphere you’re trying to create calls for a bit of distortion, either visual or audio. Or maybe, you need to replicate the found footage look or convey a dramatic recollection of a character’s past. Whatever the case, VHS and glitch effects are very popular right now with video editors, so let’s jump into some great downloads to help you create this look.

Part 1: 21 Top VHS Camera Effects

Check out these cool VHS effects for After Effects, Premiere Pro, and DaVinci Resolve. We’ve even included some motion graphics for you to use in whatever your preferred editing suite is.

After Effects

1. VHS Opener

This super easy-to-use After Effects template is filled with effects and glitches perfect for creating a nostalgic feeling. Simply edit your titles and text and add your own footage. This is a quick, easy, retro template for you to run with!

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2. VHS Freeze Frame Opener

Here’s another eye-catching AE template from Motion Array. This one mixes a vintage VHS look with sleek, modern animations and transitions.

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3. VHS Transitions

This one contains 16 funky VHS transitions in one template. Drop-in your footage, adjust it as needed, and that’s that. Perfect for beginners learning to use templates.

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4. VHS Style Slideshow Opener

A simple yet effective VHS glitch effect to give your video that homemade, old fashioned feel. It’s one that every editor should have.

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5. VHS Effects by Creation Effects

This is a paid collection, but you’ll get access to a huge stash of VHS-style effects. The range of effects is impressive and includes some subtle distortions and some nearly unwatchable. It also includes some TV-static stock footage, sounds effects, and transitions. You can customize everything to your liking.

This template will set you back $59, but for the vast collection you’ll be getting, that’s quite acceptable. After Effects CS3 and up only!

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6. VHS Toolkit for After Effects by Motion Elements

This VHS effect toolkit comes in at $39 and works with Adobe After Effects CS6 and above. It’s a template including text, video, and logo placeholders. Drop your footage in and change the text and logo to whatever you’d like.

It’s a quick, effective way to add decades to your video style!

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7. VHS Video Effect Overlay by Enchanted Media

Drop your footage into this template and let the effects do their thing! You can’t get easier than that. Free to download today!

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8. VHS Horror Trailers and Titles by Motion Elements

Horror movies are the perfect scenes for glitch and distortion VHS effects. This template is eerie, glitchy, and makes a great opener for something disturbing. It’s comprised of 2 parts: a trailer and a title sequence.

It’s super easy to edit, and the fonts can be found on the download page too. The sound effects are included, and all that remains is to stick your creepy footage into the template.

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Premiere Pro

9. VHS Style Pack

This one is an easy to use template for Adobe Premiere Pro users. It has a couple of different styles, all old-school VHS. Just drop your footage in, and you’re all done!

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10. VHS Build Pack

With 5 styles, 5 transitions, and 4 elements, this is an awesome template for a stylish video. It’s another great Premiere Pro template to add value to your videos.

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11. VHS Retro Trailer

Yet another super template to make your editing process quick and easy. Distorted VHS glitch effects make for lovely transitions. Featuring 9 footage or photo placeholders and 10 titles, you can’t get easier than this.

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12. 20 Free VHS Overlays by Max Novak

Download these 20 VHS video overlay effects for you to use at your leisure. The video includes a brief tutorial on how to use them. All for free!

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13. VHS Effect by Rampant Media

A $19 purchase, this template includes some cool VHS effects for your next project. Compatible with PC and Mac, and available in HD, this is a useful VHS effect to have handy. Did we mention it was created by Emmy award-winning artists?

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14. VHS Film Effect Preset by Steven Van

Steven talks you through how to create a retro VHS look in Premiere Pro and offers a free preset for you to download. He also has a step-by-step guide on what to do with the preset in the comments on his YouTube video.

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15. Stories – Glitch & VHS Edition by Motion Elements

This template works perfectly for mobile applications such as Instagram Stories. You’ll get 2 vertical video openers, with glitches and VHS effects throughout. Compatible with Premiere Pro CC 2017 and above!

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16. VHS Glitch by ChickArt

A simple, but very authentic VHS glitch effect look. Apparently, this one was created in true old-school style – by damaging the inside of a real VHS tape and recording the result. You can’t get more authentic than that! Check out the licensing info to be sure of what you can and can’t do with this overlay!

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DaVinci Resolve

17. VHS & Glitch Logo

This template for DaVinci Resolve is super easy to use. It’s as simple as opening the file, adding your logo and whatever media you want in the background. Render, and you’ll have a cool, animated logo reveal to use in whatever way you want.

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18. VHS Slideshow

Another useful DaVinci Resolve template by tarazz. This one contains 8 placeholders and 5 text fields. Add your footage, change the text as you will, and you’ll have an awesome, retro video.  

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Motion Graphics

19. VHS Noise Background

This background is a full HD, VHS noise effect that can be used as a background or as an overlay. Experiment with blending modes in your edit to get the exact effect you want.

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20. Static VHS Screen & Text Effects by Adobe Stock

Although this is a paid template ($19.99), you can edit your text, and you’ll have a gritty, glitchy, VHS effect to add something cool to your next title.

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21. VHS Color Noise Pack

This pack contains 4 different VHS effect styles for you to drag and drop into your next project. As with all overlays, changing your blending mode will change the way this effect comes out.

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Part 2: How to Make Your VHS Effect Look Great

If you’re keen to learn to create your own VHS video effect templates, here are some key elements that will point you in the right direction. We’ll go over classic VHS colors, aspect ratio, effects, audio, and icons.

Color

You’ll want to make some adjustments to your contrast to get a faded and aged look. This is a big part of the old-school film style. Check out these stylish color effects that you can use to achieve the VHS look.

Blur

Using Channel Blur, try blurring each RGB channel separately. This is a classic part of VHS effects. What happens (when you do this correctly) is that you get a blurry, “outside-the-lines” effect.

Unsharp Mask

This effect causes an unnaturally sharp look that gives the footage a bit of a dated feel.

Grain

Noise or grain is another tell-tale sign of VHS footage. You can add it in your editing program, or use an overlay. We’ve got some cool (free) overlays for you to check out here!

Aspect Ratio

A 4:3 aspect ratio is the one to use to create a visually accurate VHS effect. If your footage is in 16:9, an easy way to change this is to use a 4:3 overlay.

Video Camera Shake

A little bit of shakiness also goes a long way to getting that VHS camera effect right. There are plenty of downloadable effects to create this in your footage.

Audio

There are also many distortion sound effects that can be added to your video. Scratching, crackling, or digital distortion create a great effect and add to the VHS feel.

Glitch

Visual glitches in the video can be created by using a template or an overlay. This implies that the footage is being seen on an old-school, slightly out-of-tune, bad signal television. And if you’re after more glitchy goodness, check out these free downloads!

Icons

Things such as a “play” icon can cause the footage to feel like an old home video. These can be downloaded either in static image form or in the form of animated overlays.  


VHS video effects can have an amazing effect on the look and feel of your project. Nothing inspires nostalgia in a viewer like VHS footage. The effects we shared today are some of the best on the market and are all worth adding to your editing toolkit. What are your favorite VHS effects to use? Let us know in the comments below!