Digital cameras in the studio can be used import older analog video to digital in real-time. Transcoding is available but not recommended.
The Canon ZR10 camera supports IEC 61834 and it has analog inputs so it can import any analog source including VHS or other formats. The MiniDV tapes can tolerate repeated recording easily reducing costs. Additional tapes are readily available for larger projects.
Firewire can handle all DV rates from 25 megabit and above easily so importing DV video is the best quality possible. DV also is used for 720p and 1080i video which is used with HDTV with higher bitrate streams and different CODECs.
Older Sony Digital8 cameras can play older analog tapes along with digital tapes. The newer models dropped the analog support.
Sony recommends using cleaning cassettes once every 50 hours of recording or playback. For those who are still skeptical, Sony recommends cleaning video heads with a cleaning cassette before trying another brand of tape.