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Old March 3rd, 2003, 06:36 PM   #1
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Severe dropped frames problem

Hi,
My friend's computer has the odd problem of dropping 1 frame of video every 30 frames or so. It isn't isolated to Premiere; I tried capturing video through Windows Movie Maker and it has the same problem. I'm thinking it's the camera. It's a Panasonic PV-DV200, and flaunts itself as a 'Web Camera.' You can capture 30 seconds of video at a time with the USB cable which is supplied.. It has a firewire jack, and there's a Pyro BasicDV firewire card in the computer.

I'm going to try capturing with my camera to see if it has the same problem, but if anybody can give me any insight as to what's happening here it would be much appreciated. Here are the specs:

Intel Celeron 800MHz
Maxtor 2B020H1 20GB 5400rpm
256MB RAM
WinXP Home

Panasonic PV-DV200 camera

Thanks in advance!
-Alex
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Old March 3rd, 2003, 07:40 PM   #2
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It looks to me like the computer is marginal at best. USB is just too slow for video, 800 MHz is also slow for video, but passable. The 5400 RPM drive is also considered slow for most video needs.
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Old March 3rd, 2003, 08:47 PM   #3
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I agree. My first guess would be the slow drive, but it could be a Windows thing too. I've never heard of any camera problem that causes this.
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Old March 3rd, 2003, 09:39 PM   #4
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My first two suspicions are the slow hard drive, but mainly the camera. It's very obvious that it's built for USB video capture. It does have firewire but it's probably marginal.

I myself am running XP with a 500MHz processor and 384MB of RAM, everything runs fine. But I also have a 7200rpm drive. Also, my friend's computer only have one hard drive, so it is indeed quite marginal for video work.
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Old March 4th, 2003, 12:12 AM   #5
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I had a situation a year ago where I had beefed up my computer system and added some new periferals. I Started droipping frames. It turned out to be the USB Multifunction printer, scanner, fax, etc. It was a real,resource hog. Everytime I do a capoture i unplug my USB and voila. no dropped frames.

The problem most likely the same but it could be a case of some function , periferal or even the USB buss hogging far too much of the system resource.
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Old March 4th, 2003, 12:48 AM   #6
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Bryan,
That actually might be it! She has a little Dazzle peripheral for a digital camera, plus new USB2 hookups. Thanks for the suggestion, I'll have to try that.
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Old March 4th, 2003, 08:14 AM   #7
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That computer is just functional for low end moving pictures.

The Celeron chip is a major problem. I think the Memory and drives should be ok, but the processor. A Celeron chip is a cheap-O version of the Pentium family of chips. It may say 800 MHz, and it is, but it is equivalent to a 266 MHz Pentium Chip.

This can kill...

Here is a link for some information on the different chips:

http://computer.howstuffworks.com/question268.htm

Cheers!
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Old March 4th, 2003, 05:36 PM   #8
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Derrick,

Althought Celerons are cut-down versions of a Pentium chip,
it is not that bad. Video capture doesn't place a huge task on
your CPU. The most stressfull parts during capture are your
busses and harddisk.

To answer this problem:

1. first check what this camera is supposed to support. If it only
supports 15 fps you will never ever get a fluid moving image

2. next best thing would be indeed to check whether you have
USB 2.0

3. check to see if your drives have DMA enabled

4. try a 7200 rpm drive. In theory a 5400 should be able to
sustain your datarate, but that can be tricky. 7200 should
be able to match it without any problems (unless you are doing
uncompressed captures)

In what format/codec are you capturing?
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Old March 4th, 2003, 06:26 PM   #9
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Its the worse...

I have a personal bias against these chips. I apologize for using this thread as a sounding board. My years working and configuring and networking corporations, with morons, making uninfomed hardware purchases to keep costs down and workers frustrated. Whoops a little name calling.

However, I am a strong proponet of use what you have.
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Old March 4th, 2003, 06:30 PM   #10
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Derrick,

In that line of thinking, we agree. I have been in the professional
IT industry for quite some years now and yes I would also
advice someone to go for the "real-deal". I'm also advising
companies to stick to name brands for support etc. and not go
down the path of building your own no-name PC's for your
employees to use (you will need a very good support section
in your company for this to work).

Also like you said "use what you have". Most people here are
doing this thing on the side and can't afford to "throw money"
at every thing. So sometimes (more like most of the times) we
have to work with what we've got or can afford.

I do believe if it is possible that Alex should upgrade his PC.
But basically it should work with his specs, allowing for the
points I posted earlier.

Much respect!
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Old March 4th, 2003, 07:15 PM   #11
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You can get by in some apps with a 5400 drive, but I believe Premiere expects more. XP defaults with DMA enabled, though older Windows systems do not.

I have not tried a Celeron, but someone once told me that some Celerons were rebadged PIIIs when Intel ran short of Celerons. Still I would vote to use either PIIIs or PIVs.

I would also recommend using more memory than 256MB. XP will run fine under 256MBs but some of the techs say XP runs better with a half gig.
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Old March 4th, 2003, 08:04 PM   #12
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I had the same problem as well when I first started playing around with DV.

I was using a Pentium 3 500 Mhz, and had dropped out frames every 25 frames or so.

But then, I switched to Pinnacle Studios for capturing, and the dropout problem is gone.

Adobe and Ulead gives me the dropout problem as well.

Nevertheless, I have upgraded my computer to a pentium 4 as my older computer was too slow for me to do rendering.
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