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Old May 6th, 2009, 09:58 AM   #1
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Dropped Frames

I need some advice on dropped frames. I have a new desktop and everytime I download a Mini-DV tape to my computer (External hard drive) I am getting dropped frames. When I did this with my old pc (E-machine) I did not get any. Any thoughts on what I can do. My new pc is an top of the line Acer.

Gary
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Old May 6th, 2009, 10:04 AM   #2
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Make sure the external drive is set to UDMA mode and not PIO.
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Old May 6th, 2009, 10:07 AM   #3
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Don't know the answer to your question but have seen another Acer user who couldn't capture at all with Vista 64 bit, many of us came to the conclusion it was a firewire issue that manifested itself with 64 bit OS.

If you haven't already: disconnect all other firewire devices when capturing. If using Vista tweak it by adjusting your power settings, especially the hard drive settings. The default is for hard drives to power down after 20 minutes. While I found that mostly caused issues for me with editing, there is no good reason to leave the power settings in Vista at the default values.
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Old May 6th, 2009, 10:41 AM   #4
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You could try WinDV (freeware). It buffers input (only DV capture software I know of that does), which can help when disk performance is on the edge of marginal. Make sure the capture drive is defragged too.
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Old May 6th, 2009, 04:45 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert M Wright View Post
You could try WinDV (freeware). It buffers input (only DV capture software I know of that does), which can help when disk performance is on the edge of marginal. Make sure the capture drive is defragged too.
This is one of the main reasons for making sure that your capture drive is a physically different drive to the OS drive. When capturing, you are feeding the data from tape in realtime, so if the drive can't keep up with the data throughput, you will get dropped frames. It's not so much of an issue with rendering because rendering isn't locked to realtime - it's speed is adjusted accordingly - governed by the slowest part of the system.

Personally, I always use raid0 for capture - I've been bitten too often in the past.

Last edited by Steve Renouf; May 6th, 2009 at 04:47 PM. Reason: clarity
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Old May 7th, 2009, 09:00 AM   #6
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I had the same issue.
checking everything, hardware, hdd-s, udma, another capture progs, fresh XP install.
But nothing helped!
Finally i change the firewire cable (!) to a new one, and from that time, i have 0 dropped frames. (i captured 8-10 tape at least)

Some electric, contact problem. Maybe you should check also!!
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Old May 8th, 2009, 12:34 AM   #7
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Yeah, I tend to agree with the post right before mine...

There is no modern day computer that should have difficulty capturing DV footage over firewire, period. This is evidence by his E-Machines (typically junk) not having any problem but the new one does.

So something may be physically wrong with your new machine. It will likely not be a 'setting' in Vista because no matter how resource intensive any default Vista settings are, they aren't so bad that they are going to cause DV to drop frames... I also don't think in this case his hard drive settings be it DMA or PIO, etc are going to make the difference. Asking a drive to record 8Mb/sec is like asking a high school cross country runner to run a 12 minute mile.. it can be done without a sweat...

I agree with checking the firewire cable, maybe try a different utility to capture just to see if the Vegas itself is 'broken' or if it is maybe computer related. Just to be sure, try to capture the footage on another computer to make sure your camera isn't acting up as well. It's going to be a process of elimination most likely and it is possible you have some software running on your computer that is conflicting with your firewire device.

Jon
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