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Old September 12th, 2006, 08:50 PM   #1
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D2D Using a Macbook

Hey all,

I recently purchased two video cameras used, one a VX 1000 and the other an XL1. After bringing the XL1 in for a checkup it turns out that the servo board is fried so I can't record to tape. The cost for repair would be about as much as I had spent on the camera so I've been trying to figure out which route to take..peice it out and sell it, get it fixed or go the D2D route.

At the same time I am looking at purchasing a Macbook in the next few months and I'm wondering if I could just capture straight to the Macbook using the XL1 and then use my other camera when lugging a Macbook around is inconvenient such as backpacking or kayaking.

Does anyone here have any experience capturing directly to a Macbook? Is it feaseable to put a Macbook into a knapsack and just run the cables to your camera? I was looking at purchasing a Firestore or some other external drive but seeing as I need a new laptop anyway then I might as well kill two birds with one stone and save some dosh until I can earn a few extra $$$ and fix the camera or purchase something like a Firestore drive. Thanks in advance.

Scott
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Old September 13th, 2006, 03:08 AM   #2
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You would need capture software like FCP to do it but yes it should be possible provided the laptop is up to it (ie beefy enough processor).

Being tethered to a laptop via a firewire cable is less than ideal though. Just think what happens the first time the firewire cable pops out... and no tape backup. Or your capturing software hangs - and nothing to tell you there is a problem. Most capture software cannot be triggered by the camera either. Also I'm not sure the hard disk is all that large on most Macbooks?

I'm not sure that any of the current DTD solutions are reliable enough to do away with tape backup - its a risky business. Sorry to hear you got such a bad deal.
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Old September 16th, 2006, 02:53 PM   #3
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You wouldnt be able to control the recording part through the camera it would all be done through (Final Cut Pro since your thinking of getting a mac not sure on other software if you can still control through camera)
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Old September 16th, 2006, 03:13 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Thibodeau
Is it feaseable to put a Macbook into a knapsack and just run the cables to your camera?
Do you want to have the laptop in the knapsack with the lid closed? AFAIK, that isn't possible.

I've used BTV Pro on my powerbook G4, and it's a pretty cool little program for monitoring and capturing. Not sure if it would work under Rosetta on the new machines though. They don't seem to have a universal version.

http://www.bensoftware.com/btvpro.html
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Old September 16th, 2006, 04:07 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin Calumpit
You wouldnt be able to control the recording part through the camera it would all be done through (Final Cut Pro since your thinking of getting a mac not sure on other software if you can still control through camera)
I've been mulling over trying to find a way to use my broken XL1 without having to shell out all the dosh it will cost to fix and have decided to peice it out and sell it and just go with my VX1000 for the time being. Any solution I look at will cost me over $1000 or be a huge hastle so I'll sell the parts and reinvest in a laptop and use that for my editing. C'est la vie...I'll pick up another XL1 someday but I like the VX1000 as well and it's more compact for what I'm using it for. Thanks for everyones replies though.

Cheers,

Scott
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Old September 16th, 2006, 04:48 PM   #6
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You know, if you're just trying to find a substitute for the tape drive in your XL1 then there's a much cheaper and easier way to accomplish this. Get a small, inexpensive 1-chip DV camera that has DV input. Then plug a firewire cable between the two cameras. The little 1-chipper should be able to record the data stream from the XL1, and it could be stashed in your backpack or clipped to your belt.

Of course you would still have the issue of cables popping out and lack of deck control from the XL1, but it would be pretty cheap and give you full quality on a tape in a compact package.
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Old September 16th, 2006, 06:38 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boyd Ostroff
You know, if you're just trying to find a substitute for the tape drive in your XL1 then there's a much cheaper and easier way to accomplish this. Get a small, inexpensive 1-chip DV camera that has DV input. Then plug a firewire cable between the two cameras. The little 1-chipper should be able to record the data stream from the XL1, and it could be stashed in your backpack or clipped to your belt.

Of course you would still have the issue of cables popping out and lack of deck control from the XL1, but it would be pretty cheap and give you full quality on a tape in a compact package.
Are you serious? This would work? I'm not concerned about deck control because I'm still pretty new to all of this but if I can record from my XL1 to a tape using this type of system then that would be GREAT! On another note, I'd have a little camera for mucking about with so that I don't take any chances with my more expensive cameras when I'm hiking, biking, etc etc. Any suggestions on a little camera that would handle something like this? (I'm kind of new to this world if you haven't noticed but I'm certainly learning a lot from this board)
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