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General HD (720 / 1080) Acquisition
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Old July 10th, 2008, 11:27 PM   #1
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Need Help

I'll try to keep this short, but I do appreciate it if you can help me out folks...

I'm a storm chaser (freelance) for a local TV station, and I need some advice on what you would recommend to capture video? Keep in mind, I need good quality, but... I'm often times pressed for time in emailing these clips to the station.

I'm shooting HDV with a Canon XHA1. Right now, I can capture with Sony Vegas, but gees those .m2t files are H U G E !!! I would prefer a way to capture in Windows Media format.

Any thoughts?
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Old July 11th, 2008, 12:07 AM   #2
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Hi Billy...........

This might be right up your street.........

http://www.microsoft.com/windows/win...e_control.aspx


CS
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Old July 11th, 2008, 12:24 AM   #3
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Something must be going on in my hardware configuration, because my laptop is not allowing me to use Windows Movie Maker or Windows Media Encoder to capture the video. I can only capture video using Sony Vegas.

Anyone experience this? Advice?
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Old July 11th, 2008, 12:48 AM   #4
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Hi Billy....

You haven't given us a lot to work with.

I'm assuming you're trying to capture HDV?

I'm not sure either of the Windows applications you mentioned can capture the various flavours of HDV.

You could try downloading HDVsplit (I think that's it's name - a check on the boards will give you the correct name if not).

Alternatively, if the end result of you work is SD, you could capture SD from your HDV tape and go from there.

Think we're going to need a bit of help before giving any more advice.


CS
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Old July 11th, 2008, 12:53 AM   #5
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I'm connecting my XHA1 via firewire (IEEE) and Windows Movie Make apparently does not even have the capability of capturing via firewire, so that's out.

Windows Media Encoder is not recognizing my video device. Yet, if I launch Sony Vegas, I can capture just fine.

What I'm trying to do is to be able to capture my HDV video, but in a format such as Windows Media Video or some other format that I can compress enough into a manageable size file to email for broadcast over TV for my severe weather reports.
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Old July 11th, 2008, 01:10 AM   #6
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Yeah, sort of got that........

but have you established that WME can download HDV?

From (very) briefly reading the stuff I pointed you to, it mentions HD, but makes no mention of actually ingesting same from a camera, only DV.

My guess (and boy, what a guess) is that it can only pick up HD from a hard drive once you've ingested it and converted it to those humungous m2t files (or similar).

If that is the case, you will still (somehow) have to get that data onto the hard drive from the tape, then feed it into WME to do the compression etc.

If the time element makes that impossible, perhaps time to think of jumping ship from tape altogether and go solid state recording.

This either means junking the A1 or going for the solid state recorders coming on stream as I type.

Make any sense?


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Old July 11th, 2008, 02:28 AM   #7
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What version of windows movie maker are you using? If you have Vista, the current version of moviemaker does support HD, but the quality of the result (the only time I tried it - before I had another program that would support HD) was awful, so I switched to downloading as SD. Older versions of moviemaker do support firewire, but not HD.

So, I can't import HD into moviemaker on the Windows XP machine I'm currently using, but I can import into Premiere Elements4. On my Vista laptop, I can import HD into both programs.
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Old July 11th, 2008, 03:28 AM   #8
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Unfortunately I think what you are really asking isn't so much a cheap software solution as a hardware solution. You are looking to encode High Res video files which are already pretty heavily compressed (HDV) to Highly Encoded video (WMV) on the fly.

There's A ) Not a lot of point to this for most people, as WMV isn't an easily editable format

and B ) would require a lot more grunt in terms of processing than most software solutions would be able to perform in realtime.

There might be a hardware converter out there that could help you - but it's not something that's normally done on the road in really quick turn around situations.

I've found some remote webcasting solutions in an article here:

http://svconline.com/avcontrol/produ...sting_systems/

There might be some useful information there - although I'm not sure how much of it is used to dealing with HDV (You may be better off to shoot in SD if you need to downconvert to email sizes REALLY quickly.)

I've had moderate success previously using a program called BTV Pro on Macs before doing realtime capature to compressed file types from an SD firewire source - you may be able to get a workflow going for that - but it sounds like you are on a PC.

Also I should note my limited success was only from an SD source - but it did manage to capture directly to encoded formats such as Mpeg-4 but it was not a stable solution on the system I had.
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Old July 11th, 2008, 01:16 PM   #9
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This might help you...

sorenson squeeze

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sorenson_Squeeze
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Old July 11th, 2008, 03:40 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Billy Griffin View Post
I'll try to keep this short, but I do appreciate it if you can help me out folks...

I'm a storm chaser (freelance) for a local TV station, and I need some advice on what you would recommend to capture video? Keep in mind, I need good quality, but... I'm often times pressed for time in emailing these clips to the station.

I'm shooting HDV with a Canon XHA1. Right now, I can capture with Sony Vegas, but gees those .m2t files are H U G E !!! I would prefer a way to capture in Windows Media format.

Any thoughts?
Is the TV station broadcasting in HD? Have you talked with them about what format(s) they will accept?
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Old July 12th, 2008, 02:51 PM   #11
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Not broadcasting in HD yet, but they are digital and in 16:9 aspect ratio.

The challenge seems to be using Sony Vegas to capture my HDV clips. It automatically saves them as the .m2t file extension, which I suppose means that it's uncompressed and the very best quality capture.

I'm trying to find a solution that will allow me to capture these clips off of the HDV camcorder, but not so high in quality, or perhaps a "magic solution" that will keep the resolution very good, but yet not have 100+ MB for a 30 second clip!

What methods/software are you guys using to capture?
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Old July 12th, 2008, 02:55 PM   #12
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Okay, So Here's An Even Better Question... Is There A Way To "trick" My Sony Vegas Software Into Not Capturing These Files As .m2t Extensions, Or Is That Just An Automatic With The Software???
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Old July 12th, 2008, 04:29 PM   #13
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The HDV that you are downloading as M2T files is what the camera recorded (and it is quite highly compressed). What you want to do is transcode the video that the camera recorded (re-compress it).

Since the station is broadcasting SD, it would make a lot of sense to downrez the video to SD before transcoding, if you want to create considerably smaller files that would still be of reasonably decent quality.

You could set the camera to convert to DV during capture (which will result in files that are about the same size, but at SD resolution - 720x480) or you could capture the originally recorded HDV and downrez the video on the computer (quality can be better that way). From there you can transcode to a much smaller file that can still be of very high quality (10:1 with H.264 is feasible). If you try to transcode the HDV at the original resolution (1440x1080), realistically you couldn't reduce the file size much below about 1/3 the size of the originally recorded HDV (and it would take awhile to do that), without starting to lose quality noticeably.

H.264 compression can yield excellent quality for size of file (better than WMV, if done right), but you really need to find out what format(s) the television station is willing to accept. I doubt they would normally accept WMV or H.264 for most programming, but they might for late breaking news/weather.
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