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The TOTEM Poll: Totally Off Topic, Everything Media
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Old December 2nd, 2003, 07:41 AM   #1
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DV Vs. Analog Formats for a Debate

We have to do a debate for wchool, does anybody know where I can find some good information besides the obvious on why DV is better than analog video. We're including things like editing, cameras, picture quality etc. I think the main arguements for the analog side are "faster video editing" but thats all I can come up with to argue against. I'm on the DV side so I'd like to find some detailed facts about why DV is better than analog so it would be hard for them to counter-argue my points. any help is appreciated.
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Old December 2nd, 2003, 11:37 AM   #2
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Re: DV Vs. Analog Formats for a Debate

<<<-- Originally posted by Tim Frank : I think the main arguements for the analog side are "faster video editing" but thats all I can come up with to argue against. -->>>

You've abviously never done any analogue editing. Sit on an analogue A-B roll edit system for an hour and see how much you get done. Its brutally slow. I can't think of ANY advantage for analogue. You can't even argue that the equipment is cheaper, since you can edit DV on a 3 year old computer that you can buy used for $250, and a $400 miniDV cam probably has higher quality that an Canon L1 (which was Canan's Hi8 camcorder equiv. to the XL1).

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Old December 2nd, 2003, 12:06 PM   #3
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Both analogue and digital video cover a vast number of different video formats. DV is a very popular digital format, but there a vast number of others, as is the even vaster number of analogue formats.

Analogue ranges (with many ommisions) from, say Ampex Quad 2" tape composite video through to grotty old VHS. Quad was replaced with 1" formats which were cheaper, and of lesser quality. I still think quad looks about the nicest of any standard definition video format, but it's also the least practical (save for perhaps something like VERA), and would prefer the picture from a quad machine over a DV deck.

1" is quite a noisy - in terms of picture noise format, and is not especially likeable.

Then we have the u-matics - low band (PAL only), high-band and SP, of which only high-band and SP look any decent, and were widely used as commercial / corporate formats, and still find use in the advertising industry (or is it film trailers - I can never remember and even less understand!)

Then we get into the more modern age with VHS (and SVHS), BetaMax (super beta and ed-beta) which are generally about the least acceptable of analogue formats in their low-band states.

As the beta sized tape spawned the professional BetaCam and BetaCam SP formats, the VHS tape spawned MII. Both MII and SP both look very nice and are very equivalent to DV in quality, although they usually look better for having a better camera and lens on the front.

And for consumer camcorders, we have 8 and hi8, which look very similar to VHS and SVHS in quality.

And I do remember there's an analogue HiDef format from Japan, HiVision (I think) which would also look superior to DV.

On the digital side, the same picture quality and convenience of DV you have DVCpro and DVCAM, and the better quality variant DVCPro50. From there on up it gets scary with BetaCam SX (I don't reckon it looks as nice as DV, but it's a close call either way), Digital BetaCam (very nice looking format) and Digital-S (which is know as poor man's digibeta as it offers very similar quality at a bargain price, but very few people bought it anyway). Up from there you have D1, D2, D3 etc. and from there into the high definition formats of DVCproHD, and HDCAM, and I'm sure many more I've forgotten about.

So, some analogue formats can offer better picture than DV, especially on the front of a superior camera.

The main advantage of DV and is cost and convenience. It has a very acceptable picture that can be recorded on small cheap tapes. It's also very useful for getting cameras into small places, and for certain stunts, it cheap enough so that if it breaks, it doesn't matter too much.

The convenience factor you know - hard drives and computers with firewire are cheap and powerful, and a digital "dub" in such a fashion is virtually lossless, which was never the case in the old days of analogue. However, some people prefer to use an offline process followed by a linear online for HD where the computer and hard drive requirements are still very tough.

Hope this helps,

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Old December 2nd, 2003, 02:10 PM   #4
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Thanks a LOT! I did some research on the interenet. According to our "teacher" who is really somebody from TV MArketing, doesn't know much about the TV Production side of things analog editing is easier because you can supposedly get in and get something quick done faster than dumping it and dumping it back to tape. That's not my side, and I haven't done analog editing but that's what she said. I'm probably one of the people in our class that knows the most. I'm going to bring up topics about DV that the other people didn't even know existed. I saw their side and it consisted of this

No Adobe (referring to Adobe premiere which nobody seems to know how to use or fix when they can't get it to dump...takes me 2 secs to fix a problem usually

No Dumping/Exporting

No Computers=No Crashes

No Exporting Problems (Our stupid class has broken the firewire ports on 4 our of 5 Canon ZR60 cams and both of our XL1s's)

Thats all they had and I think we're going to own the analog side of the debate...just because they did't even know what the difference is when they started out.

We have to film a 30-sec PSA Promo for DV tomorrow...any quick little ideas, my group members have one but being the level of learning they are at I'm not sure what it is or how good it will be.
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