MiniDV tape to Digital – pls help

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    • #37539
      AvatarAnonymous
      Inactive

      This might be a simple question lol.. but I need help πŸ˜‰

      If I record on a mini DV tape.. what is the easiest way to convert that to digital and upload to my computer?

      Any help would be appreicated.

      Thanks a lot.

    • #166454
      AvatarAnonymous
      Inactive

      Many of the MINI DVC cameras have a USB port for uploading to your computer. The camera often comes with software to aid in this process.

    • #166455
      AvatarRob
      Participant

      Nope. USB won’t work. You need Firewire400

    • #166456
      AvatarAnonymous
      Inactive

      Thank you both for taking the time to answer the question. So basically even if its a mini dvd cam, it is possible to connect it to my computer and sort of extract it from the tape directly from the cam to the computer?

    • #166457
      AvatarRob
      Participant

      “So basically even if its a mini dvd cam, it is possible to connect it
      to my computer and sort of extract it from the tape directly from the
      cam to the computer?”

      Yea. You need to connect your camera to your computer with a Firewire400 wire and you need a video editing program, such as Final Cut, Sony Vegas, and Windows Movie Maker if you’re a super-noob.

    • #166458
      Avatarbirdcat
      Participant

      Actually, I have captured MiniDV from USB (using Roxio asy Mdeia Creator if I remember correctly – was six years ago) as well as FireWire (IEEE 1394). FireWire is the better way to do it but USB is an option if your PC does not have a 1394 port.

    • #166459
      Avatarbirdcat
      Participant

      So basically even if its a mini dvd cam, it is possible to connect it
      to my computer and sort of extract it from the tape directly from the
      cam to the computer?

      If you have a DVD then you can either import from that (Vegas can do this natively and I would think all other NLE’s have this feature) or you can put it into your DVD drive and copy the .VOB files over to your PC renaming them to have a file extention of .MPG (the VOB files are MPEG-2) and just use those to edit.

      Just remember MPEG-2 files are already pretty compressed so I would not use them for more than one generation of editing.

    • #166460
      Avatarjerronsmith
      Participant

      There seems to be some confusion are we talking about a camera that records to mini dv tape or to mini dvds? or both?

      Higher end NLE’s actually don’t usually support capturing directly from a DVD disk. They require that you use another program to rip the files first. Some don’t even support editing MPEG files at all.

    • #166461
      Avatarbirdcat
      Participant

      I was specifically speaking of mini DVD’s – Vegas allows you to capture directly from any non-protected DVD as well as MPEG-2 and MPEG editing – I would have thought most NLE’s did the same (especially the higher end ones).

      Just another reason to use Vegas I guess.

    • #166462
      AvatarAnonymous
      Inactive

      Mini DV tape is digital, the process is simple by just connecting your camera to the computer via firewire and ingest to the computer. Of course you would have to use a capture utiltiy, but if you have a NLE, you have a capture utility.

    • #166463
      AvatarAnonymous
      Inactive

      In today’s MiniDV cameras, you must use Firewire. Most cameras do not give you the option. I have never seen one that allows you to use the USB jack to transfer the video from Tape. (Only if you have a memory card connected, then it will read the card but not the tape). Here are the steps for Windows Movie Maker.

      Note: Make sure you have a Firewire port on your computer. This is definitely one on your camera.

      1. Connect the firewire cable to your Camera and Computer.
      2. Turn the camera on in Playback mode.
      3. Open Windows Movie Maker.
      4. Click on the Tasks Tab (and column will open on the left).
      5. In the 1. Capture Video section, choose “Capture from Video Device”
      6. It will ask you where to save it then ask what format to encode the video in. (I would choose “DV-AVI” if you plan to edit it alot), WMV if you just want to share the video.
      7. It will probably tell you to press play on the camera.
      8. From there it will download the tape to your computer.

      Note: It will take the length of the tape to do so (meaning the same amount of time as you have video on the tape). An hour of footage = an hour of download time. It will proabably be 15 Gigabytes for a full MiniDV tape, so make sure you have that much hard disk space.

      Hope this helps

    • #166464
      Avatarjerronsmith
      Participant

      >> I would have thought most NLE’s did the same (especially the higher end ones).<<

      Birdcat,

      The logic behind most of the higher end NLEs is that if you are gong to shell out the thousands of dollars on a professional level editing system (not to mention the cost of the editor) you are going to be editing professional level media on it. MiniDVD isn’t a professional standard in any way, shape or form, so most of the higher end NLE’s don’t even bother with it. The same is true for many of the other lower end/nonstandard video formats, they have to be converted first, using a separate utility to a format the NLE will work with. Many of the higher end systems like AVID use proprietary formats and don’t adapt well to a change in format or workflow.

      EventVideoGuy,

      There are a couple of consumer level NLEs that will actually capture video via a USB, but it lacks camera control and is usually a pain to accomplish.

    • #166465
      Avatarbirdcat
      Participant

      The logic behind most of the higher end NLEs is that if you are gong to
      shell out the thousands of dollars on a professional level editing
      system (not to mention the cost of the editor) you are going to be
      editing professional level media on it. MiniDVD isn’t a professional
      standard in any way, shape or form, so most of the higher end NLE’s
      don’t even bother with it. The same is true for many of the other lower
      end/nonstandard video formats, they have to be converted first, using a
      separate utility to a format the NLE will work with. Many of the higher
      end systems like AVID use proprietary formats and don’t adapt well to a
      change in format or workflow.

      Thanks Jerron – I just see things differently – If I were to plunk down three grand+ on a piece of video software, I would hope it would be at least as funtional as the five hundred dollar competitor. As I said in another post (somewhere) I considered other NLE’s but for the money and functionality, I couldn’t ssee a reason to leave Vegas behind. In conversations with D. Eric Franks (Videopia and Digital Juice) he informed me that many pro’s do indeed use Vegas as their second NLE because it’s just so easy to do things with it – This must be one of those things.

      Curious though – Why wouldn’t a professional editor want to be able to work with just about any video source – I can see quality being an issue for not wanting to work with MPEG or MPEG-2, but if I were cutting for evening news for example, I might have a need to work with video sources sent in by viewers – Having that capability in my NLE would just simplify the process and speed things up overall.

    • #166466
      AvatarAnonymous
      Inactive

      “There are a couple of consumer level NLEs that will actually capture video via a USB, but it lacks camera control and is usually a pain to accomplish.”

      Jerron, I agree with you. I know the the NLE’s can download via USB, but with my experience it all depends on the camera. I have never seen a MiniDV camcorder that downloads via USB. I’m sure they are out there but I’ve never seen or heard of one.

      All of the cameras I own have a menu option to either download from the memory card via USB… or from the Tape via IEEE 1394. But the tape won’t go through the USB and the card won’t go through the IEEE.

      Just my experience.

    • #166467
      Avatarjerronsmith
      Participant

      >>Curious though – Why wouldn’t a professional editor want to be able to
      work with just about any video source – I can see quality being an
      issue for not wanting to work with MPEG or MPEG-2, but if I were
      cutting for evening news for example, I might have a need to work with
      video sources sent in by viewers – Having that capability in my NLE
      would just simplify the process and speed things up overall.<<

      I use the word professional badly I think, my experience is for Film and Video in the NY and LA markets and in an environment like that you have alot more control over the type of media you are working with. Additionally, their workflows are often long established and sometimes very rigid. There are issues with performance, vid and audio quality, and color quaility when mixing different formats and that is one of the reasons to avoid it if possible. There are also concerns that forcing the program to conform video that doesn’t meet the projects/sequences specs will lead to slower system performance and a drain on resources, which results in longer rendering and lag time while you wait for the system to rerender gop based video. And when you only have a few days to turn around an edit, every minute counts. In situations like this you really don’t see user generated content at all. The idea of broadcasting video shot by people on the street is a pretty new concept actually. This isn’t to say that the higher end systems can’t work with the non-standard video they can, they just require that you transcode them first into a format that they can work with. Which to be honest you should do anyway to avoid system perfromance issues.

      Event videographers, corporate video creators and independent producers all tend to have much less control over the footage they are working with and often the deadlines are not as insane. This is where programs like Premiere Pro and vegas come in. They are like Swiss Army knives, really good tools when you don’t know what is coming down the pipe, or when you have to cobble together a workflow on the fly.

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