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Old January 7th, 2008, 12:42 AM   #1
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Student looking for suggestions (deck, setting up, etc.)

Hi everybody,
I am pretty new to the digital editing world. I am a student, and my school teaches us on Avid -- I love it! I do visit the Avid forums but thought I'd come over here for more opinions.

I have an Academic version of Xpress Pro, which was given to me, and am purchasing a 390 from Dell's outlet which meets Avid's requirements. Since I still have so much to learn, I couldn't see spending nearly $4000 on a new PC. Anyway, I don't have a camera, because I will either borrow from school, from my public access facility, or rent from a community media center. Anyway, I'll be using Sony cameras, and will just be shooting mini-DV, in SD (possibly HD in the future but not yet). I don't have a Mojo. So, I have a few questions...

For digitizing into AXP, would it be a good idea to buy a deck or use the cameras I borrow? If I use the borrowed cameras, I don't think they loan out cables, so what kind should I get to connect them for digitizing? If a deck is better, which is the most reliable yet inexpensive ones to get that would be compatible with the equipment I will be using? Thanks!

Diane
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Old January 7th, 2008, 02:57 AM   #2
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Hey good luck with all this!

BTW, you aren't actually "digitizing" when you capture DV or HDV footage into an NLE b/c the image has already been digitized by the camera. You're really just transfering the digital video and audio data from the tape to the computer.

As for a deck, I think it would be a waste of money. Just use the camera you borrow from your school as a deck. You only need a deck to capture the footage into AXP, so the vast majority of the time you won't be using a deck anway.

As for a wire, I believe a standard 4 pin to 6 pin firewire cable is what you'll need. And as long as you keep the length under ~14' it should be fine. But you have to check the computer's and camera's specs to be sure.
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Old January 7th, 2008, 01:09 PM   #3
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So much to learn, so much to do!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Moretti View Post
Hey good luck with all this!
Thanks! I'm pretty excited. I have been very cautious about buying a new PC. Have had the AXP software since last spring when I won it in my school's video contest. I know a few of my classmates have put Avid on their home computers and laptops, but I couldn't do that with mine because it has Media Center. Rather than try to mess around and make it work, I wanted to get a new PC just dedicated to Avid - but I wanted to save as much on this investment as I could. Hence, the Dell outlet. Got a good deal on a "scratch & dent."

I had three school video projects during the last two semesters, but I also shot a few others whenever I had the chance. I didn't have time to work on more than my class assignments while school was on, so now my personal projects (shorts) need to be edited. I've got four of them piled up! It takes me 30-45 minutes to get to school and use their Lab, so it's great to be able to work on them at home.

Quote:
BTW, you aren't actually "digitizing" when you capture DV or HDV footage into an NLE b/c the image has already been digitized by the camera. You're really just transfering the digital video and audio data from the tape to the computer.
Oh, of course, you're right! I used to say "capture" but got into the habit of saying digitize because I have a part-time job at a video archive where we take old Beta tapes and digitize them into Avid News Cutter.

Quote:
As for a deck, I think it would be a waste of money. Just use the camera you borrow from your school as a deck. You only need a deck to capture the footage into AXP, so the vast majority of the time you won't be using a deck anway.

As for a wire, I believe a standard 4 pin to 6 pin firewire cable is what you'll need. And as long as you keep the length under ~14' it should be fine. But you have to check the computer's and camera's specs to be sure.
I might just go with your suggestion until I feel I must have a deck. I will be borrowing sturdy Sony cameras, and will usually have them for an entire weekend, so I can get a lot of capturing done. As for the firewire cable, I'll look that up and see what I need! It looks like it will plug right in to the front of the 390, but if not I guess it will go in the back.

Now onto my next bits of research... networking my two PC's, installing a KVM switch, and getting a good portable hard drive!

Thanks so much!
Diane
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Old January 7th, 2008, 06:09 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Moretti View Post
As for a deck, I think it would be a waste of money. Just use the camera you borrow from your school as a deck. You only need a deck to capture the footage into AXP, so the vast majority of the time you won't be using a deck anway.
And I suppose I'd be able to output my finished product to tape by using the camera instead of a deck?
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Old January 8th, 2008, 03:45 PM   #5
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do you mean back to a minidv tape? if so, that is a pretty cool function that I was not aware of. I would also like to know the answer to this!

But yes, take advantage of your resources (use the school camcorders as decks). Once you have the money to buy yourself something new (your own camcorder) then spend the extra change to buy yourself a cheap camcorder (hd minidv camcorders will be about $600 soon).

good luck, i am a student myself, i know the pain : )

btw, how does everyone feel about the cheapo minidv camcorders on ebay? they sell for under $100, think they would make a decent deck? has anyone used them?

first post...yay!!!
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Old January 8th, 2008, 04:33 PM   #6
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btw, how does everyone feel about the cheapo minidv camcorders on ebay? they sell for under $100, think they would make a decent deck? has anyone used them?
nevermind! I don't think they have IEEE or comp. out...go with the ZR series as mentioned above, unless you use it solely for rew/fw. just a thought :/

Last edited by John Stakes; January 8th, 2008 at 07:35 PM.
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Old January 8th, 2008, 09:06 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Diane diGino View Post
And I suppose I'd be able to output my finished product to tape by using the camera instead of a deck?
Yes, of course you can do that. The camera will appear in AVID just as a deck would. You can capture or digital cut to it as normal. (At least for DV projects. HDV is a different story).
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Old January 8th, 2008, 09:12 PM   #8
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btw, how does everyone feel about the cheapo minidv camcorders on ebay? they sell for under $100, think they would make a decent deck? has anyone used them?
John,

I don't know which model camera you are referring to, but any minidv camera should have a firewire port. Just Google the model number to make sure.

Buying a cheap camera just to use as a deck is a solution that many use to avoid wear and tear on an expensive camera. It saves buying an expensive deck and gives you a cheap backup camera in the bargain.

Having a deck is great if you are constantly capturing material, doing a lot of logging and shuttling back and forth. If not, I find it kind of overkill for someone editing at home. If it were me, I'd put the money towards a second or better camera.
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Old January 8th, 2008, 11:39 PM   #9
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[QUOTE=Peter Moretti;803927]Hey good luck with all this!

BTW, you aren't actually "digitizing" when you capture DV or HDV footage into an NLE b/c the image has already been digitized by the camera. You're really just transfering the digital video and audio data from the tape to the computer.

Hey Peter you make a point but its the way we all speak in the industry, so yes she is "digitizing", and it will always be reffered to like this. Diane is up with the lingo and your being anal.
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Old January 9th, 2008, 11:16 AM   #10
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Hey Peter ... Diane is up with the lingo and your being anal.
Dude, that's a little harsh. Peter doesn't deserve that kind of comment when he is just trying to be helpful.
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Old January 9th, 2008, 11:39 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Vito DeFilippo View Post
Dude, that's a little harsh. Peter doesn't deserve that kind of comment when he is just trying to be helpful.
I agree. I would personally rather be corrected in a friendly way on here than by a customer (or in this case, professor!). =D
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Old January 9th, 2008, 11:44 AM   #12
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In the world where I work. "Capturing" is transferring video from tape to computer. "Digitizing" includes transforming said video from analog to Digital.(but so does 'transcoding', which has other meanings as well.) "Importing" means moving a file from one location to another.

But yes, people often use the words more or less interchangeably. Digitizing and Importing are a FORM of capturing, thus they might be said to be sub-sets or sub-forms. And of course, this leaves out the term "Dubbing" or "Duplication" which is also often part of the process, and can sometimes be bandied about as well

It's no big deal, and I usually understand what the person is talking about.
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Old January 24th, 2008, 03:38 AM   #13
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My Bad

Yeah it was a bit harsh, was a bad day and found my self reading a lot of info that just wasn't required. I guess you get that here though.

Sorry guys
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