Some people ask why they should purchase a railroad video DVD, when they can see some free material online on some websites. Although there is free material out there, most material is not necessarily full-length, they are quick samples, they may disappear from the site, and one has to rely on the internet to see them. Paying for the internet connection every month is also necessary to view those videos online. When you purchase a video, you pay for it one time, and can view it many times over, after that initial purchase.
Having your own DVD in your own hands is different. You can watch that video anytime in person, without having to rely on getting online to a certain website. When that website or internet connection is down or slow, or that particular video is now missing, you then cannot view it. Plus you can call that video yours to add to your collection or library, it was safely purchased legally through a valid company and store. A lot of the personal videos posted online are not good quality, have been illegally obtained, shared, or copied.
Just like railroad books, magazines, etc., railroad videos make good go-to forms of information anytime for entertainment, research, and more.
Entertainment– just want to relax and watch some great train action on a video, watch certain equipment in action, certain locations, railroad names, time-frames, etc. (Kids love them too- a great sitter while mom or dad is doing chores.)
Research– railroad videos make great sources for historical, and modeling information for accuracy. Not all books, websites, free videos online will have that certain thing you are looking for.
Preservation– what a great way to preserve constant-changing railroad paint schemes, names, equipment, locations, etc., for history, just like photography.
In-hand railroad audio CDs also make great sources for the railfan, historian, researcher, or the curious. Sometimes just listening to the sounds of trains can conjure up terrifc visions in our imaginations.