If capture from tape via sdi or firewire is equivalent? advantages using sdi vs. fw? at DVinfo.net

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Canon XL H Series HDV Camcorders
Canon XL H1S (with SDI), Canon XL H1A (without SDI). Also XL H1.


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Old June 3rd, 2007, 03:42 AM   #1
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If capture from tape via sdi or firewire is equivalent? advantages using sdi vs. fw?

Am i correct in summing up my research done on this site - that once you have recorded hdv to tape, ensuing tape capture via firewire or sdi is about equal in image quality...

And this is regardless of final output, ie. HDCAM master from the nle via hd-sdi, is gonna look the same without respect to how it was put in the nle (either firewire or sdi)...

And the only advantages to using one over the other would be:
which ever nle, codecs and storage you may have access to may determine using one over the other in terms of ease of use, but not necessarily deliver a better (artifact free) image than using one over the other?

If I've missed the boat, please chime in...

Thanks in advance,
Lonnie
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Old June 3rd, 2007, 08:58 AM   #2
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About equal gives you plenty of wiggle room. Technically once you are on HDV tape then the firewire output is the best bit for bit transfer from the tape but the rest of your workflow impacts the final result. If you can go in HDSDI to your computer system and edit in a high quality Codec than HDV then you might end up with a superior result overall. Different NLE systems might give you different results with each workflow. HDV is not a very good edit environment so you will most likely be better off converting it either on the way into the computer or after it is already digitized. If you are going in Firewire your conversion take place in the computer. If you are going in HDSDI then your conversion happens as it is going in.
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Old June 3rd, 2007, 06:00 PM   #3
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thanks Daniel,
are the hardware conversions in Aja or BM using their flavors of uncompressed
or dvcpro100 or the like, usually better than an nle
software conversion (and if you want to be specific, my nle is
final cut studio)...

for what it's worth it seems Cineform is a highly touted codec for
high quality editing/mastering according to research from this site...
would you agree? (also worth noting that they have a beta
program cooking for FCP using OSX)...

thanks for your time,
Lonnie
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Old June 4th, 2007, 10:49 AM   #4
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Lonnie,
I think the advantage of hardware conversions over software is speed and workflow not necessarily picture quality. As the computers get faster and faster the advantages in speed of the other hardware conversions diminish. I think the best thing you can do is test the workflows you have at your disposal and see how well they work for you. If you can live with the firewire in mode it certainly is the least expensive. HDSDI can be the most direct and the most consistent but you may not find that very important.
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