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Old August 27th, 2003, 06:54 PM   #1
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Digitize from Cam or Deck?

Hello All,

I was recently talking with some DV aficionados and the topic of digitizing from a separate VCR-type deck, as opposed to using a camera, came up. A few of them made it sound like sacrilege to digitize off your camera, claiming it wears the camera out faster, etc.

Are such things true? I really donít have $700 to blow on a cheap DV Deck.

Thanks,
Andrew
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Old August 27th, 2003, 07:14 PM   #2
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Of course capturing from your camera makes it wear out faster. A camera will suffice as long as you aren't capturing a lot of footage (maybe 50+ or 100+ hours).
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Old August 27th, 2003, 07:23 PM   #3
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It's a cost issue. Compare the repair/replacement bill against the cheap DV device. Also, the video output quality of your DV playback device may not be comparable to your presumably better camcorder.

$700 for a DV deck, which are probably manufactured in such low volume that they can't meet the output quality of a camcorder? Buy a second, cheaper camcorder for that money !
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Old August 27th, 2003, 07:44 PM   #4
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The output quality of both will be equal for DV. Analog inputs and outputs are likely better quality on a deck. A deck will also convert between more formats and last longer. A deck will also rewind and fast forward tape faster, which can save a lot of time if you batch capture.

For comsumer cameras (<$1000) it's pretty pointless to get a deck as all the decent ones cost more than the camera itself. If your camera breaks then you simply get a new one. If you are doing a lot of shooting on your camera (news?) then a deck would be a good idea.

A deck has its place in the professional world though.
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Old August 27th, 2003, 09:35 PM   #5
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More Specific

I might as well get a little more specific...

I'm using a Canon GL2 to shoot for a journalism class (I am a broadcast journalism major at Hofstra University). If I shoot more than 20 hours/ week, I would be shocked.

Would I be better off buying a cheaper MiniDV camera and using that to digitize? If I digitize from a cheap camera, will it still maintain the high quality of color from the GL2 recording during the digitization?

--Andrew
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Old August 27th, 2003, 10:07 PM   #6
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Andrew,

If you have a miniDV recorder, use the Firewire connection to digitally transfer to your computer. This will allow you to retain all of the GL2 recording regardless of what device you use to do the digital transfer. "Digitize" refers to converting the analog outputs of your camcorder to digital data. With miniDV and Firewire, there is no need to digitize. I use my old mini DV camcorder (my first JVC) to transfer recordings made with my Sony Vx2000.
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Old August 27th, 2003, 10:40 PM   #7
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Enlightenment

Gints,

Thanks for all the help. Apparently the lingo in and around the university's edit rooms is a little off. The students refer to the process of going from a DVC-Pro tape to an Avid Xpress as digitizing. I was assuming that a DVC-Pro was indeed D-V.

Anyway, I want to make sure I have the this straight. If I record onto a MiniDV tape with a Canon GL2 and then take the tape, place in a dirt cheap Mini DV (brand name, of course) Mini DV Cam and transfer (not digitize) it to my computer's hard drive, the video quality will be the same as it was when I first recorded it on the Canon GL2?

I am 99% sure the answer is yes. I just want to make sure before I go and spend more money on a consumer MiniDV cam.

Thanks SOOO much to you and everyone else for all your help!

--Andrew
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Old August 27th, 2003, 11:25 PM   #8
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Andrew,

Yes, the dirt cheap miniDV camera will transfer all of the glory of your GL2. The digital transfer reads the digital data on the tape and converts it to a stream of bits for your computer. Both units will read the digital data in the same way.
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Old August 28th, 2003, 10:25 AM   #9
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Andrew,

Your friends need to understand the language. Digitizing has been very well explained in a previous post so lets talk about CAPTURING the video into your NLE whether mini DV,DVCam or DVPro.

I use PD150's to shoot weddings and events. (DV- not DVCam)

I use a JVC 1 chip camera as a tape deck to capture the footage to my NLE. It's all 1's and 0's- the tape and the NLE do not know nor care if the tape is beening played back to it with a 3 chip, 1 chip or an actual deck. None of my footage has suffered because I use a 1 chip camera to play the footage to my NLE AND I even use it to make my DV masters after editing is complete. All it is doing is acting as and working as a VCR.

I do this to prevent putting more hours on my cameras than necessary. I do 40-55 weddings per year plus other events so when you add up the hours it's a lot and frankly I will not put any more on the cams by using them as VCR's. If/when the little JVC craps out, fine, then I'll buy a deck but for now, my little vacation camera is working fine as my mini VCR.

If I were you, I would consider something along the same lines. You camera is a costly piece of equipment, why put more hours and wear and tear on it than you have too.
Your choice.
Don B.
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Old August 28th, 2003, 04:45 PM   #10
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It does play a toll on your camera. Spend the money on a deck so you don't have to spend the money on a new camera after it is worn down.
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Old September 8th, 2003, 05:05 PM   #11
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cheap cam as dv deck for DVX100

If I were to record at 24p and use a second camera as a dv deck, would that second camera transfer the same 24p footage onto the computer? Or should I just use my camera? I'd like to get a deck but they seem so expensive. Does anyone know any good performers in terms of dv decks, also for a good price? Thanks!!

:]
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Old September 8th, 2003, 06:00 PM   #12
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Try E-Bay. Sometimes you can get a good deal. Look at the DSR-11, you may find one for cheep on there. They go for $1600 retail.
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Old September 8th, 2003, 09:58 PM   #13
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Hi Andrew,

I bought a _JVC GR-D30 for the purpose of using it as a deck. It should work from what I've read but when I tried to transfer tape shot on my GL2 using the JVC I get a LOT of static, jumping and weirdness on the transferred image. Couldn't afford to buy something else right away but had a project with a deadline so I had to use the GL2 as a deck :-(

Here's a link to B&H's info page (where I bought...only $349):
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=productlist&A=details&Q=&sku=273696&is=REG

The JVC records audio in 12 or 16 bit but I'm wondering if it plays back only at 12 bit (even though that really wouldn't make sense). Has anyone else had a similar problem. I really want to use a second cam as deck because it also provides a back up cam in case of emergencies.

I just posted a new thread tonight regarding this same issue. ANY help would be greatly appreciated.

(p.s. I'm a big fan of Canon & JVC. Not so much Sony anymore)
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