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Old May 6th, 2006, 04:06 PM   #1
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Importing DV - Poor Quality

Hi.
I have a Canon DV camcorder. When I import video into iMovie or any other app, via firewire, I get pretty poor quality.
But when I hook the camcorder to my DVD recorder with RCA, it looks 100% better.

I want to edit the video, not just watch it on DVD. Can someone explain why importing video with firewire decreases the quality? Do I just need to buy a new camera?

Thanks,
Jonathan
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Old May 6th, 2006, 04:09 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jonathan Schraff
Hi.
I have a Canon DV camcorder. When I import video into iMovie or any other app, via firewire, I get pretty poor quality.
But when I hook the camcorder to my DVD recorder with RCA, it looks 100% better.

I want to edit the video, not just watch it on DVD. Can someone explain why importing video with firewire decreases the quality? Do I just need to buy a new camera?

Thanks,
Jonathan
There's no reason it should be at lower quality - firewire transfer is merely a file copy operation. Are you viewing it on your computer monitor when you import it but on a regular TV when you send it to the DVD player?
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Old May 6th, 2006, 07:13 PM   #3
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Yes usually. But when I import video using iMovie or Final Cut Express with firewire, it looks very grainy and dark. But if I record the movie on my DVD recorder and then play it back on my computer's DVD player, it looks great. So I don't think it has anything to do with the monitor or tv, but I could be wrong.

Maybe it's just a lousy camera.
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Old May 7th, 2006, 09:00 PM   #4
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when you capture the video, are you capturing it as uncompressed DV, or are you compressing it in any way?

You mentioned the video looks grain and dark on your display, but it should look the same no matter where you view it - one reason it may look grainy could be because the quality is higher which will make the image much sharper and easier to see any grain. In terms of the image being dark, I'd need to know a bit more to take a guess at that, but firewire is the highest quality method to transfer footage, so hopefully we can make it work for you.

hope this helps
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Old May 8th, 2006, 01:27 PM   #5
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The most logical firewire capture is as a "DV" type file. In a PC it has ".AVI" extension, and the file size will be something over 12 GB per hour. For some reason some capture programs default to converting to a lower quality. It saves some disc space, but at a quality cost.

Check that the setup of your capture pgm is set to DV. Do some math to check that the file size ia about right. Capturing DV is a direct data transfer to the HD and cannot change video levels - audio - or ANYTHING!
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