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Old May 9th, 2007, 02:10 PM   #1
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Is a PC per camera still the best (most economic) solution?

Hello and thanks
I have learned bunches from the forums here and appreciate this knowledge base. It's time for me to shoot with my question. I am shooting events with a couple of GLs with two operators or two remotes and editing in Premier Pro 2.0. My question is since I am ultimately rendering down to DVD quality (end product is broadcast TV and DVDs), could I use something like a surveillance camera DVR (or less than DV quality capture card) to capture my multiple streams of video to multi-cam edit in post? I am learning that capturing multple streams of video, tapeless, sounds fantastic in theory; but expensive and experimental. My best option so far seems to be to pick up an inexpensive PC for each camera (a cheap PC is still cheaper than the FS or Citi Disk solutions right?). My thanks to all of you jumping into it, so that the rest of us can benefit from your experiences.
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Old May 9th, 2007, 03:49 PM   #2
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Those DVR cards typically accept only analog signals, so while they could work, you'd be shooting yourself in the foot with regard to video quality. You really do want to record the DV stream and it is possible to record multiple streams with one PC, especially SD. I can't think of a name off the top of my head, but there are several free programs out there that offer the option of selecting from multiple recording devices (rather than defaulting to one).

Tapeless should save you a lot of headaches with regard to TC, making your multi-cam editing much easier. Maybe you can share your specific workflow for critique?
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Old May 9th, 2007, 04:38 PM   #3
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Absolutely

I am shooting church services and specials for use on TV and DVD distribution. I am running the two (soon to be three) Canon GLs into a DV Switcher (MX-4DV which is crashing randomly) and the output of that switcher into a Sony DV cam (cheaper than a "real" DV deck). I transfer from the DV into Premier and do my post prod work there. I like Primier's multi-cam editing feature, so I figured since my switcher was dieing, I'd capture each camera and do the switching in post. Direct to disk has its appeal (saving time and recording heads) but I haven't found the best way to do it. If there is a software that'll capture Multiple DV streams on one PC that sounds great. I tried Enosoft's DV processor (one PC two different Firewire cards). It looks like it is working but only one of the streams of capture ends up being a usable file. The other gives me errors about being an invalid file type. Thanks for any advice from your experiences.
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Old June 8th, 2007, 10:33 AM   #4
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I would love to hear if you've gotten anywhere with this. I'm currently pounding my head against the wall trying to get 2 cameras to be separately readable on a single PC with no luck.
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Old June 14th, 2007, 08:27 AM   #5
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Nope....

Still looking and waiting for the right solution. sorry, not there yet.
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Old June 16th, 2007, 05:47 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by David Bruss View Post
I am shooting church services and specials for use on TV and DVD distribution. I am running the two (soon to be three) Canon GLs into a DV Switcher (MX-4DV which is crashing randomly) and the output of that switcher into a Sony DV cam (cheaper than a "real" DV deck). I transfer from the DV into Premier and do my post prod work there. I like Primier's multi-cam editing feature, so I figured since my switcher was dieing, I'd capture each camera and do the switching in post. Direct to disk has its appeal (saving time and recording heads) but I haven't found the best way to do it. If there is a software that'll capture Multiple DV streams on one PC that sounds great. I tried Enosoft's DV processor (one PC two different Firewire cards). It looks like it is working but only one of the streams of capture ends up being a usable file. The other gives me errors about being an invalid file type. Thanks for any advice from your experiences.
I am using two FS-4 HD's with two Sony HC1 cameras. If I record in HDV or raw dv I use my batch files to combine them into two long and continuous files.

I then use Vegas 7 and Infiniticam to switch between the cams.

There is no need to be able to use two streams because the files are on my hard drive and I am selecting scenes between each one from the time-line.

I wish I could explain this a bit more but at the moment my mind is a bit on the foggy side.

So I hope this much helps anyway.

Here is the link to my batch files for joining the HDV files or the raw DV files.

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=87166

Note: To use the raw dv type files simply change the extension from .m2t to .dv

Also note that when using raw DV files that there is no wrapper to tell what it is. So like when I load them into Vegas they look like scrunched 4x3 files instead of 16x9 files. I simply tell Vegas not to keep the original aspect ratio and then they will look normal.

I wish there was a sticky on my latest thread on how to join the files because I have noticed a number of users here wanting to know this information. I may put some info on my web page later on so people can find it there.

I will be moving my computer system to another room next week so I may not be available for a while.

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Old June 29th, 2007, 08:42 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin Kimmell View Post
I would love to hear if you've gotten anywhere with this. I'm currently pounding my head against the wall trying to get 2 cameras to be separately readable on a single PC with no luck.
I'm working on a solution for dual camera capture on a single PC. My initial tests have been successful: I'm able to capture from two HDV cameras on a WinXP PC. I'm working on the software now and I'll start a new thread to update my progress. I'm focused on HDV at the moment, but it probably wouldn't be too hard to add DV support. Look for a new thread in the next few days.
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Old July 11th, 2007, 10:06 AM   #8
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Best of luck Ron. I always thought DVRack would be the perfect vehicle to create a software based live switching system, but it never happened.

I'm very interested in what you come up with. I'm assuming one will need 2 FW cards, but beyond that I'm not sure where to go.
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Old July 17th, 2007, 12:07 AM   #9
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There is a capture card called a Spectra 8. It will suposedly capture 4 video streams at once at a resolution of 640 x 480 @ 30fps. Never used one but would be interested to see if it works.
http://store.ituner.com/ituner/spec8vidcapc.html
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