burning video to dvd, lense filters, editing for newb

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    • #39667

      I just bought a panasonic gs500 last week. I havent used it yet as im still waiting on some mini dv tapes. I am taking a camping trip with some friends and want to take some footage and get used to the functions of the camera and then in september im going to be setting it up on a tripod in the upper balcony of our church for my wedding. this is my first camcorder and dont know much about them. I seen some different kind of uv filters and such for the camera, but if i use one for camping or the wedding what type would be the best to use or none? is there a such thing as a clear filter just to keep dust and scratches off the lense itself? I also would like to turn my tapes into a dvd that will play in normal dvd players that i can give to my family. is there any editing or software that is easy to use and basic. two programs came with the camcorder but they had no manual for the software and it seems way too complicated. It wouldnt let me import any of my mpeg videos off the internet just to try editing them and stuff because it didnt support much for video types. is there a certain type i should save my videos as that can easily be burned on a dvd or played on a computer? any other advice that would be relavant would be much appreciated as well.

    • #171192

      I seen some different kind of uv filters and such for the camera, but if i use one for camping or the wedding what type would be the best to use or none? is there a such thing as a clear filter just to keep dust and scratches off the lense itself?

      I recently got a UV filter at Best Buy. They run around $15, and while they can make the image look a little better, I just use them as a filter to protect the lens. Go with one of those for protection. Here is some info on them:

      UV and skylight filters are useful when you are taking pictures in the mountains or at sea or any other place where there is a lot of UV light. It will filter out the blue haze that normally blurres the background of your picture. It is also very useful when taking pictures in the snow, since snow is a very good UV reflector.
      About half of all the photographers keep an UV filter on their lens permanently, for it prevents your lens against dust, scratches and perhaps damage due to accidentally dropping the lens. A filter is much cheaper than a lens, so ruining your filter will not be as bad as ruining the front element of your lens.

      As for turning your footage into DVD. You can do that with Windows Movie Maker, which is the easiest program for making video. You will need a firewire port for your computer, if you don’t have one already. Then you will need a firewire cable, to connect the camcorder to the computer. Edit away, or just import the raw footage, then click make DVD.

    • #171191


      Since this is your first MiniDV camcorder, I am going to give you fair warning now. Take it from my experience and other on this forum as well.

      Pick a brand of tape and stick with it. DON’T MIX TAPE BRANDS. You will regret it.

      I broke 2 cameras before I realized that was the problem. There are extensive threads on this forum regarding this topic

      I would recommend using the brand of tape that manufactures your camera. But if you used another brand, stick with it.

      Just a warning.

    • #171193

      You will need both video editing software and DVD authoring software. Your operating system probably came with a basic video editor. If you just need the authoring software, and you are using Microsoft Windows, you might look at MediaChance, http://www.mediachance.com/dvdlab/index.html . They make some stand-alone authoring products, and you can download a free 30-day demo. Also, some editors come packaged with DVD authoring capabiity, such as "Sony Vegas Movie Studio + DVD". If you use a Mac, I’m sure you’ll find lots of video-related software for it, but I’m not familiar with the "Mac side".

      BTW, I second Brandon’s warning about tape. Different brands of tape use different types of lubricant, and some types of lubricant dont get along with other types of lubricant, resulting in gummed-up tape transports. 🙁 Choose a well-known brand of tape, and stick with it.

      And I second Ryan’s advice about using a UV filter. Also, sometime, you might want to experiment with a polarizing filter to reduce reflections and enhance colors. Since your camcorder has 3 CCDs, it will have beam-splitter prisms; so a circular polarizer would work best.

      Good luck, 🙂
      Ken Hull

    • #171194

      is it ok to use two different types of tapes by the same brand? I am thinking of using some of the normal 60 minute panasonic mini dv tapes and getting some of the 80 minute panasonic linear plus tapes for longer taping sessions when i dont want to run out of tape.

    • #171195

      My guess is YES. But to be sure, contact Panasonic. They should have a technical support email address, or a support forum.
      Ken Hull

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