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Old May 23rd, 2004, 12:22 PM   #1
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Question - preserving date/time stamp when copying

When I first bought my Canon 100MC camcorder, I was very excited about the prospect of someday editing my video into more polished productions. My primary interest was to create DVDs of family footage for the relatives, but I also envisioned trying my hand at creating movies - just for the fun of it.

Now that I'm getting more serious about all this, I find myself with dozens of tapes with unfortunately quite mixed up footage - including anything from my son's first steps and vacation footage, to closeups of bugs and flowers in the back yard, tests of camcorder accessories, and of course a fair amount of "wasted" tape that either didn't come out well, or wasn't as interesting as I had hoped. In order to make my growing collection more easily searchable I thought I would take the time now and create a database of this footage. It sounds like a lot of work up front, but I can't help thinking how much harder it would be to repeatedly find specific clips buried deep in a stack of tapes. It seems to me that this needle-in-a-haystack process would be even more tedious!

Anyway, the first problem I encountered with this plan was that I had time-code breaks on all my tapes, due to my recording technique. I now know how to avoid this, but for my current collection of tapes it presents a problem since I was going to identify all clips by timecode. What I thought I might do to overcome this little problem was to load each tape into the computer, clean up the footage (get rid of unwanted footage, possibly correct audio, etc), then save it back to tape with continuous time-code. At that point I could use whatever logging scheme I wanted, and any editor could find clips for me by simply referencing the timecode.

But here's the problem (finally, I get to the question!)... When I output the cleaned up footage to a new tape, the date/time stamp of the footage takes on the current value of the recording device (in this case another camcorder which I am using as a DV deck)! In other words, I forever lose the original date/time stamp of the footage. In most cases I wouldn't really care, but I think there are some cases in which I really don't want to lose this information! Short of manually entering a date/time value into my database for each clip , is there a way to preserve the orignal date/time stamp in this process?


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Old May 23rd, 2004, 12:47 PM   #2
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You would need to use a DV camera or deck that allows the timecode to be cloned or synced to the original. You might look into renting a deck with these capabilities. This discussion of time code might help also.
Jeff Donald
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Old May 23rd, 2004, 09:43 PM   #3
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Just to be perfectly clear, it is the DATE and TIME data recorded on the tape that I am concerned about, not the timecode counter. For example, if the tape of my son taking his first steps says it was recorded December 12, 2002 at 2:31 pm - THAT'S the information I want to preserve! I don't really care about the timecode value per se (unless there is a connection to the date which I am not aware of). The gist of my question was that when I try to write older (or edited) clips back to a tape on a camcorder connected through firewire, it treats it like a new recording and thus overwrites the date/time. Is there a way to keep this from happening, or some other way to process my tapes so I don't lose this information?

Thanks again,

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Old May 23rd, 2004, 09:52 PM   #4
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put a title with date, time, and even location... much better and easier than what you are looking for.
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