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Sony HVR-Z1 / HDR-FX1
Pro and consumer versions of this Sony 3-CCD HDV camcorder.

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Old April 20th, 2006, 11:53 PM   #1
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Location: Corona, CA
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FX1 help needed - Using Vegas 6

Im trying to find out the best method to capture my videos and edit in Vegas. I record the video in HDV format on FX1.

When I select from the VCR Menu on the FX1 [VCR HDV/DV] HDV and [iLink CONV] On and I use Vegas to capture the video I get a *.avi file that is 720 x 480. This file looks pretty clean but is 720 x 480 16:9? It is labeled as DV codec. I guess I am confused about this. When I play the clip in the Win Media Player it is 16x9 aspect ratio.

When i set the [VCR HDV/DV] HDV and [iLink CONV] Off I am unable to capture the video in HD by using Vegas 6. I get an error that the camera is not recognized or something like that. Are those of you who capture the actual HD feed and then downconvert in Vegas, using some other software to capture other than Vegas 6?

I downloaded Cineform HD's software and set it up as described in the manual and when I capture and convert using that method my files are larger and they show as the 1440 x 1080 and 16:9. They seem to play slightly faster than the normal correct speed and at the end of some clips the video seems to "break apart". When I play this video in Win Media Player it plays in slow motion, which could be my 3 year old PC. The difference between this and the converted video that I get in DV codec is that this video takes up my whole PC screen on playback while the DV Codec is a much smaller window.

When I place two identical clips one in Cineform Codec 1440x1080 and one in DV Codec 720x480 on my timeline in Vegas with the properties set for 1440 x 1080 both clips appear identical in the preview window. The Cineform video is a little choppy and seems fast motion and breaks apart at the end of the clip and the DV Codec plays smooth and doesnt break apart. When I render each to a DVD will they both fill the full 16:9 screen or only the Cineform?

I am so confused (grabs head). Please help me out to understand all of this. I have a job next weekend and really want to decide on the best method to get the best video.
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Old April 21st, 2006, 12:24 AM   #2
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I occasionally work in Vegas Movie Studio Platinum, which is a stripped down version of Vegas, as I understand it. When I initiate the capture process, to capture HDV, I select use internal video capture application. That captures the native hdv format of files. Real problem with that is Vegas has a difficult time editing that from there.

So now enters Cineform. Cineform HD Connect is a program that captures and converts the .m2t stream to an .avi file. This process is not done within Vegas. You should use the stand alone capture utility that comes with HD Connect. What you capture is called an intermediate codec. It will be five times the size of the same .m2t stream. While the file is large, it is easier to edit. Each frame is independent, whereas the .m2t frame "interpret" and use portions of prior frames. This is processor intensive, and makes it difficult to edit in almost any machine. I have had success with my dual core AMD 3800+ processor at editing native files, but the rub is that because of its nature, the .m2t presents many editing issues.

If you are using Cineform, more room is required on your harddrives, but it will be easier to edit and play back. when you install cineform, it should make the Codec available to Vegas, and editing should be available to use.

Now, as far as the preview window on my version of Vegas, it just doesn't do a decent job of presenting any projoct. I don't think it is intended to give real time playback, and it appears to skip frames in the preview process, as far as I can tell.

Once you finish editing your HD project, the idea is to save it back to .m2t format, for recording back to your camera. You can also render in several different high definition codecs, or convert to DV or go to DVD encoding from there too.
Chris J. Barcellos
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Old April 21st, 2006, 05:15 AM   #3
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I usually capture DV with Vegas 6. I go to "video capture" and there I choose the option "in the middle", some labeledlike "internal HDV caturing device".
I always get HDV .m2t files this way.

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Old April 21st, 2006, 09:22 AM   #4
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Thanks for the info. I will take a look at my capture settings tonight.
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