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  #1  
12-22-2010, 04:11 AM
Sossity Sossity is offline
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My family likes video & likes me to make DVDs even though I prefer photography, I find video very complex & problem prone.

But if I end up getting a full blown video camera, I need some help & suggestions for some

I am a novice to video, so far I have just shot video with a digital still camera, & edited with roxio easy media creator. I eventually gave up as I had video & audio sync problems. I was glad to give up as well, as family was pressuring me to crank out DVDs'.

they would shoot in low light & in the excitement of new footage would want a DVD so they could watch the footage right way on the TV.

I know it seems that alot of the video equipment today is made to hook to a TV to watch. But family prefers to have a DVD to play on a DVD player. We also have a standard def tube TV, (we are hanging on, not giving in to getting cable, but will eventually have to get a modern flat panel TV which may be high def, so I cannot rule high def capabilities out, I want the video camera to not be obsolete, but would like one that can shoot in standard def as well)

Also, among my family my mom & dad may use the camcorder as well, & they do not have the best eyesight, so easy to read buttons & levers are preferred.

I need something that can shoot well in low light, which is what the video would be shot in most of the time. Also, memory card media is preferred to tapes. Although My family did like the look of those video cameras that could record directly to a mini DVD, this would also relieve me of having to transfer & make DVD's in a video editor to watch on a TV.

I find the whole video process cumbersome, complicated, & filled with problems, & with people who do not understand the process of it, but want immediate great results. Since I am the only one in the house now who has the most knowledge about video & computers, to them I am advanced, I am not, & no one is going to stop shooting video so I am sort of stuck with it for now so I need to learn more, who knows maybe as I learn more & get better I will come to like video again.

Right now, I usually just burn raw video files to a Blank DVD shot with the digital still camera, they take it & half the time never get around to watching it, or watch it may one time or more, then the DVD gets filed away.

there are 2 computers in my home;

1. Dell PC desktop from 2003, Pentium processor, 1gb of ram, windows xp home edition.

2. Macbook pro laptop 2010 i7 4 gb of ram, snowleopard, it also has windows 7 professional installed via paralells desktop 5.0. The only editor I have on it now is imovie 09.


So far, I have used computer 1, the pc for video, I only just recently got the mac, I can navigate the os a bit, but have no experience with video on it. I got the mac to use for my online classes in a more private room, & because when I told people about my video projects & difficulties they said to get a mac, it was better for this. So far it is nice, I like the clean interface of the os.

thanks, for any help

for someone a bit lost in the world of video.
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  #2  
12-22-2010, 05:50 AM
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Quote:
with roxio easy media creator. I eventually gave up as I had video & audio sync problems
Roxio = crap. As with Nero, Roxio is an excellent example of trying to do everything, and failing horribly. Worse yet, it works miserably at a task it was once known to do well -- simply burn a data disc. (Back in the 1990s, as Adaptec Easy CD Creator, then CD/DVD Creator, then spun off as Roxio.) One program simply cannot perform all those tasks, and do it well.

Quote:
I need something that can shoot well in low light, which is what the video would be shot in most of the time
Most consumer cameras do quite badly in low light. From my own experience, I can only suggest Canon ZR-series DV cameras, or Panasonic 3-CCD series DV cameras. Those work great. However, DV is tape, which you don't want -- but I don't think you can avoid it.

Look at the Canon ZR960: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...SIN=B001OI2ZKA
Really nice.

Quote:
memory card media is preferred to tapes
Do you realize "memory card" video is high-compressed to AVC, and not low-compressed DV? That make a difference in editing, all the way down to whether the computer can even accept it and understand it. More software is generally needed, sometimes for $100 or more just for the "import codec" (an intermediary like Cineform).

Quote:
My family did like the look of those video cameras that could record directly to a mini DVD, this would also relieve me of having to transfer & make DVD's in a video editor to watch on a TV.
And it might work fine. Low light may not be great, and then you REALLY need to watch after those mini-discs, as most of them are low-grade Ritek media, and not reliable.

Quote:
whole video process cumbersome, complicated, & filled with problems, & with people who do not understand the process of it, but want immediate great results
I truly do not like shooting video -- only editing, converting and restoring.

Quote:
Right now, I usually just burn raw video files to a Blank DVD shot with the digital still camera, they take it & half the time never get around to watching it, or watch it may one time or more, then the DVD gets filed away
Typical.

Quote:
they said to get a mac
"They" were lemming goons, clearly having drank the Steve Jobs koolaid. Mac has some decent workflows for video, but there are definite limits on what you can do with it. Your Windows system was simply a bit too dated to easily work with video -- that's all it really was. A new Windows 7 system would have been fine for "movie making" using Adobe Premiere Elements (also available for Mac, FYI). There will be quite a few posts from admin and kpmedia in the future, to address workflows for Mac editing, restoring, conversion, etc -- so watch for those.

If you like games, get Pac the Man X: http://www.mcsebi.com/ptmx.php
There's some fun Mac-only things out there, so all is not lost, you'll be fine. Just realize "buy a Mac" was not magic to make all your problems go away.

In the meantime, find a camera you like, by doing a hands-on browse of what's in stores. Get a better idea of what suits your fancy, and then come back here for some more advice, based on what you decide from your findings there.

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  #3  
12-22-2010, 08:02 AM
NJRoadfan NJRoadfan is offline
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Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
Do you realize "memory card" video is high-compressed to AVC, and not low-compressed DV? That make a difference in editing, all the way down to whether the computer can even accept it and understand it. More software is generally needed, sometimes for $100 or more just for the "import codec" (an intermediary like Cineform).
The HD memory card cameras are exclusively AVCHD (which Macs choke on and require transcoding), a pet peeve of mine since there is no choice in the consumer marketplace that records to an edit friendly intermediate codec (pro gear records to stuff like AVC-Intra or XDCAM). Some older SD flash camcorders recorded DVD Video compliant MPEG2 (.MOD files), and of course there is the tape based HDV (also MPEG-2).
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  #4  
12-23-2010, 12:28 AM
Sossity Sossity is offline
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Originally Posted by NJRoadfan View Post
The HD memory card cameras are exclusively AVCHD (which Macs choke on and require transcoding), a pet peeve of mine since there is no choice in the consumer marketplace that records to an edit friendly intermediate codec (pro gear records to stuff like AVC-Intra or XDCAM). Some older SD flash camcorders recorded DVD Video compliant MPEG2 (.MOD files), and of course there is the tape based HDV (also MPEG-2).
do you have any lists or can you suggest some of those models that record to SD flash memory in Mpg or DVD Video compliant Mpg2? that would be decent or have special functions for/in low light? or at least do a better job than a point & shoot digicam?

would I be able to download the footage off the memory card raw, & burn it to a blank DVD in just windows or mac os? for immediate viewing on a TV DVD player?

would mac os or windows be able to edit this mpg 2 complaint video in video editors?

do these older camcorders produce decent quality video? would it look decent on an HDTV? or modern wide screen LCD TV?
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  #5  
12-23-2010, 12:56 AM
NJRoadfan NJRoadfan is offline
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Originally Posted by Sossity View Post
do you have any lists or can you suggest some of those models that record to SD flash memory in Mpg or DVD Video compliant Mpg2? that would be decent or have special functions for/in low light? or at least do a better job than a point & shoot digicam?

would I be able to download the footage off the memory card raw, & burn it to a blank DVD in just windows or mac os? for immediate viewing on a TV DVD player?

would mac os or windows be able to edit this mpg 2 complaint video in video editors?

do these older camcorders produce decent quality video? would it look decent on an HDTV? or modern wide screen LCD TV?
Unfortunately SD camcorders that record MPEG-2 are getting tough to find, many record in MPEG-4 now since file sizes are smaller. JVC's Everio line was the one that started with the .MOD MPEG-2 files, Canon made a few models back in the day too. The files are DVD-Video compliant with stereo AC3 audio, you can download and burn direct to DVD without transcoding. JVC never really intended for the camera footage to be edited though, they promoted the camera footage direct to DVD route.

MPEG-2 normally isn't edit friendly, but the Womble editor can do the trick. I am not familiar with Mac software enough to know if Final Cut will edit MPEG-2, but I wouldn't be surprised if it does.
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  #6  
12-23-2010, 04:42 AM
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From looking around, it needs to be a JVC model prior to the Everio GZ-HD10, which is the first H.264/AVCHD camera used. The pre-Q3/2008 JVC models had the MPEG-2 recording, which I would say is more desirable for easy editing (via Womble MPEG Video Wizard DVD).

I wonder if you can expand the AVCHD files back out to HuffYUV via VirtualDub (with the MP4 plugin) -- any ideas? I don't have a camera that I can try with, nor do I know anybody currently using one -- for the obvious reason of how much it sucks to edit the output. Need a sample file.

EDIT: Oh, neat trick! Type "jvc everio mpeg-2" into Amazon search, and you get this: http://www.amazon.com/gp/redirect.ht...reative=390957
And apparently MPEG-2 versions were released side-by-side with the AVC version well into 2009. Stock is limited, only 1-2 per model still available, price range of $500-700 each, so choose quickly if you decide this is what you want. Tape-less MPEG-2, easy to edit. Most negative comments are a mix of ignorance (I don't how to edit, wahh!) and legitimate/typical concerns over low-light use, which is going to be common on any and all consumer cameras (still or video).

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  #7  
12-23-2010, 05:19 AM
Sossity Sossity is offline
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Low light capability is important for me, & I would need what ever camcorder I get to be quite a bit better than my sony cybershot DSC-W7 digital still camera. Because this shoots in mpg as well, the video screen shot in in my other thread about rotating video, is what it shoots in. So I essentially have an mpg video recorder now, so to be worth it for me to get a dedicated camcorder would be for significantly better overall image quality, & significantly better low light capability, over the sony cybershot DSC-W7 I have now.
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  #8  
12-23-2010, 05:27 AM
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Well, I wouldn't call the dedicated JVC video camera and the Sony with an "it also shoots video" feature to be the same class of quality. However, low light is probably best shot with low compression, which again means DV.

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  #9  
12-23-2010, 05:35 AM
Sossity Sossity is offline
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DV meaning the DV tapes? or just DV for digital video in general?
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  #10  
12-23-2010, 05:41 AM
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"DV" as in the consumer DV25 NTSC 4:1:1 format used in consumer "DV cameras", which store the video on DV tapes.

Specifically, this camera suggested earlier: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...SIN=B001OI2ZKA
Canon ZR960 DV camera.

"DV" should never be used as shorthand for "digital video" because of the confusion easily caused by the format of the same name. (Actually, there are several: DV25, DVC Pro, DVC Pro 50, etc.)

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  #11  
12-23-2010, 06:00 AM
Sossity Sossity is offline
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Yes, that clarified it, so would the DV be better at low light than the JVC mpg camcorders?
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  #12  
12-23-2010, 06:10 AM
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Probably, yes.

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  #13  
12-23-2010, 07:25 AM
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My sister actually has one of the MPEG-2 Everios. I am in the process of obtaining output from the camera and formulating a workflow. Her biggest complaint was that it didn't work out of the box with her MacBook. Most of the complaints online about these cameras is the whole .MOD/.MOI file situation. Apparently nobody realized that it was just an MPEG-2 file with a different extension. The .MOI files are metadata.

There have been some tools made to work with these files to make them more edit friendly... see http://mod2avi.sourceforge.net/

There is also a program called "SDCopy" that will properly set the 16:9 widescreen flag on these files if you recorded them as such. Still looking for a link to it.

In addition someone released a tool that makes dumping the .MOD files direct to DVD a snap... its really just a front end to ffmpeg. NOTE: If I'm reading the source code right, this program is hard coded to assume PAL source video, use at your own risk.

http://sourceforge.net/projects/camerajoin/
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  #14  
12-26-2010, 11:09 AM
NJRoadfan NJRoadfan is offline
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Got the output files from my sister's Everio GZ-MG27. They are indeed standard DVD MPEG-2 files, WMP even detects the 16:9 flag on them.
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