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Old October 21st, 2003, 02:10 AM   #1
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GS 100K newbie questions

Hi, first time poster. I live in Japan and just bought a GS 100k. I can't read Japanese, so I'm figuring out how to use it bit by bit.
There are a few things I can't understand however..

Can the USB cable that the camera comes with be used to capture video to a computer beyond simple images or mpeg movies? I've been trying to get Premiere and MS Movie Maker to capture video I recorded onto tape, but neither program will recognize the camera. It only seems to let me use webcam mode.
Am I doing something wrong, or trying the impossible?

Will I have to buy a firewire cord to accomplish any kind of online video editing? My laptop has a firewire port, so I dont need a capture card or anything like that I guess. Can the DV Studio 3.3 program it comes with be used to capture video, or only stills? Again, I can't tell due to the language barrier. Does anyone know where to download an English version of this program?

Thanks in advance to anyone who replies! Drop by my site Silversow.com sometime and say hi. ;)
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Old October 21st, 2003, 03:27 AM   #2
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Hi Jamie and welcome on-board.
As with any DV camcorder USB is only intended for still/Card movies download, video recorder on tape must be handled through Firewire. Taped footage put a serious load on transfer due to its nature of very large amount of data, so USB1.1 cannot handle such even physically for extended period of time.

In a nutshell, get yourself Firewire cable.

Regards, Alex
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Old October 21st, 2003, 04:13 AM   #3
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Cool thanks.. but doesn't the GS100K use USB 2? ..and isn't USB2 faster than firewire?
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Old October 21st, 2003, 05:00 AM   #4
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First of all, GS100 doesn't support USB2.0,
USB1.1 only.
Secondly, theoretically, USB2.0 came to compete Firewire and shell provide almost similar performance (40-50 MB/s), but take into account USB is much more CPU-related and reuqires strong intervention of effecient drivers/hardware controllers and as for today taht may become major bottleneck for achieveing full thoughput of USB2.0.
For instance, I have USB2.0 interface built-in into my MB chipset (certain VIA chipset Gigabyte) and evne under Win XP Pro hooking up my remote USB2.0 HDD (USB2.0 housing holding my Maxtor 40 GB 7200 rpm HDD) was only be able to achieve about 17 MB of sustained transfer. Besides, USB may take up to 20% of CPU resources.

On the other hand, Firewire is peer-to-peer with almost no CPU involved at all and is matured enough so that is autoamtically included into Win XP delivering full performance with ease. Hooking up Firewire to your camera (and having appropriate OS - Win2K or XP) will not require any additional installations unlike USB.

Regards, Alex
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Old October 21st, 2003, 05:10 AM   #5
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That's real cool details, Alex. Thanks.

The simpler version that I always hear is:

USB2 is fast, but not sustained, photos and files - OK; realtime video - NO-NO.

Firewire is guaranteed transfer speed, so good for photos, files and realtime video.

I hope this is not too wrong, I have been telling people this!
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Old October 21st, 2003, 05:30 AM   #6
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There are two major requirements for fool-proof real-time video transfer regardless of interface type - bandwidth high enough to attain large data amounts for long period of time and strict continuous timing over the transfer period to insure non-interrupted, drop-free traffic. (so called isochronic transfers).
Basically, USB offers both and for low-quality, network-related video it si fine (in fact the company I worked for in some past they develop a family of chips specifically dedicated for TV video/audio real-time transfer via USB1.1 but of lower resolutions and high compression.
However, even though originally USB2/.0 has came to overcome bandwidth limitaitons of USB1.1 to achieve necessary goals for real-time, full resolution video, it has yet matured enough to compete with Firewire in this area, mostly due to its system highly-dependable nature.

Alex
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Old October 21st, 2003, 05:28 PM   #7
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Hi,
You can use USB 2 for serious editing with good laptop.
I editied over 100 hours of video with external pocket size USB 2 enclosure with 60 GB (4200 rpm laptop drive) without single frame drop.
My laptop Green 732, Pentium 2.4, 512 memory, 60 GB internal drive.
Mike
Plus I'm burning DVDs with external USB 2 enclosure.
At this point there is no diffrence to me what I use firewire or USB 2
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Old October 22nd, 2003, 02:23 AM   #8
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Great detail explaining the protocols Alex, and also great and fair enough from Yow!

I have external Fire Wire HD (5400rpm) and in some cases is faster than my notebook's internal 4200 rpm drive. In any case the interanal drive is no no for video while I can capture on the external with little droped frames ocasionally. The limitation in my case is the computer system (weak CPU, slow aplication HDD)

What I've seen as benchmarks on the net is that USB 2 leaves up to the advertised speeds overtaking FireWire but just in burst mode (maximum speeds). Average and sustained - the Fire Wire is the standard - it first apeared exactly to go in hand with the video for Mac.

You might be able to do what Mike says but with variable success.

To go back on the question - YES and NO.

Yes - GS100 is USB2, NO - it's NOT High Speed USB certified so it's USB2 specification is on the lower end (about twice faster than USB1.1). Transfer speed will be faster than USB1 but much much slower than real USB2. You can check the specifications of GS100 - it's written the exact transfer speed.
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Old October 22nd, 2003, 04:53 AM   #9
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Thanks Bogdan for yuor valuable remarks.
What I would only like to mention is that USB2.0 indeed defines two speed ratings: Full speed and High speed.
On the devices that used to be USB1.1 compliant, today you will see marking as USB2.0 Full speed - this is actually a marketing hype - just similar 12 Mbps speed (theoretical limit) to regular USB1.1
Sometimes we also use this trick to make our legacy USB-related products to look more attractive on the contemporary market. The product that support full USB2.0 potential must to be fully compliant with USB2.0 High Speed.
If on any product is written USB2.0 compliant or USB2.0 Full Speed - that only conveys USB1.1 performance.
To make sure your stuff is able to provide expected USB2.0 sustained performance - look for USB2.0 High Speed marking.

So bottom line, even though our GS100 may have proudly hunging USb2.0 on it - it is Full speed only indeed sugesting regular USB1.1 throughput.

Regards, Alex
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Old October 22nd, 2003, 09:19 AM   #10
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Alex, thank you for the clarification too.

Yes, on the GS100's box is written USB certified but as Alex says to be real USB 2 480 Mbps you should search for products marked as High Speed USB.

On page 149 in the specifications is noted USB 2 - 12 Mbps. That's teoretically 1.5 MB/s

For comparason my USB 1 CD-RW is rated as 6x at 1.02 MB/s

I have also portable HD with CF card reader. It also says USB 2 but there is nothing written on the box, niether any specification in the manual. I could find a magazine review where they had speed benchmarks. Speeds were not high but copying large file from the Cinema Disk to PC hit 11.56 MB/s. From PC to the device 9.66 MB/s - obviously the portable HD limitation - not only the interface.

USB 2 is rated 480 Mbps=60 MB/s
Fire Wire 400 Mbps=50 MB/s
In reality the figures are about 20-30 MB/s
Video bandwith is much lower but still 2-3 times above that 1.5 MB/s specified in GS100 manual.
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Old October 22nd, 2003, 09:40 AM   #11
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The friend of mine owing HDD firewire housing was able to reach near 40 MB/s in sustained transfer which is quite fair by spec.

So far I did not see any real devices achieving anything close to USB2.0 High speed claimed performance for sustained performance, though I did not test many of such :-).

Sorry, didn't get what yuo mean by :
"Video bandwith is much lower but still 2-3 times above that 1.5 MB/s specified in GS100 manual."

Do you say GS100 is able to transfer video through its USB ??
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Old October 22nd, 2003, 11:22 AM   #12
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By no means. What we are talking here is that USB 1.1 is imposible to transfer video to PC and USB 2 is also not good option for this action.

What Mike did is just editing using his external drive. Sustained speed is not so important then as the raw data is already stored. Have you print back to tape from the USB 2 drive Mike?

I can't recal the exact numbers for the DV format's bandwith. May be somebody else can share them.
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Old October 22nd, 2003, 11:36 AM   #13
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Aaa, sounds to be my misunderstanding.
The actual calculation can be easy:
Regular DV is 4:1:1 as far as I remember (though the calculations bellow are correct for 4:2:0 version as well), lets do assuming NTSC:
720x480x12 bit per pixel (4:1:1 or 4:2:0)x30 fps (rough estimation) gives as
about approx.: 15.2 MB/sec, so this is the actual throghput required - less then half of either IEEE1394 or USB2.0 High Speed.
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Old October 22nd, 2003, 12:55 PM   #14
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Well, Alex I was just going to ... bed.

But decided to search for correct numbers - DV also includes audio and other things.

Read here:

http://www.adamwilt.com/DV-FAQ-tech.html#DVformats
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Old October 22nd, 2003, 02:03 PM   #15
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Yes I'm capturing video first to external drive from camera then sending back creating master.

You just have to try it.
I had hard time with the concept that my laptop drive 4200 rpm will capture without frame drops, since we are brainwashed that you need 7200 rpm.
Not so long ago 5-6 years when I started with non-linear editing we were braiwashed about scasi drives for editing only.
Of course I bought it with my first system and threw it away after one month to change to bigger 7200 and cheaper.

2 days ago film student called me about my editing system.
Professor told him that he needs 10,000 rpm for film editing and nothing else. I think problems start here.
People after film and multimedia schools come out brainwashed into old technologies and things to do certain way not other.

Mike
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