Quantcast Hi8 digitizing advise? - digitalFAQ Forum
  #1  
01-29-2021, 08:39 AM
colinvandijk colinvandijk is offline
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Hello guys, just joined the forum!

I recently started digitizing various family tapes and I hope I can get some information and advise.

Most of the tapes I have are Hi8 tapes, which were captured using a Canon UC2000, but unfortunately the tapes keep auto ejecting from it so now I am using a Samsung VP-L95 to play them.

I bought an Elgato Video Capture (stupid choice, I know ) and after a few tries noticed that the image quality and framerate on the camcorder's LCD screen were way better than what I was receiving with the Elgato software on my PC.

I started digging a little into forums like these came across terms like "TBC" and "picture mode filters" for VCRs which dramatically improve their image quality. Are these build into camcorders or can they be bought as external units? Also, are there special units, like a VCR, that play back Hi8 tapes at a higher quality than my camcorder?

Lastly, I am underwhelmed by Elgato Video Capture... The image jitters often and there is close to no customization in the software. Do you have any other recommendations for alternatives?

Thanks!
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  #2  
01-30-2021, 07:32 PM
BW37 BW37 is offline
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"Are these build into camcorders?"

Yes. There are camcorders that have line TBC's and noise reduction. These are recommended for Hi8 capture. Here's a thread on the subject. It is kind of NTSC specific, but there are PAL models listed as well (which I'm presuming you will need).

Take a look at this post by lordsmurf regarding the generally recommended equipment for best capture results.

Also take a look through the Guides on this site. They are mostly fairly old, but the information is still relevant.

Lastly, to most effectively search the forum, use the Google Custom Search box at the top of the search choices.

Hopefully, some of the more experienced hands will add their thoughts.

Enjoy!

BW
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  #3  
02-01-2021, 02:15 PM
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lordsmurf lordsmurf is online now
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Quote:
Do you have any other recommendations for alternatives?
What OS? ......

- Did my advice help you? Then become a Premium Member and support this site.
- For sale in the marketplace: TBCs, workflows, capture cards, VCRs
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  #4  
02-02-2021, 05:52 AM
WGG1848 WGG1848 is offline
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I too are having problems downloading my tapes to a windows 10 computer.
Looking into the very many options of transfer devices, and, these range in price from a couple of pounds to hundreds! I found myself totally confused. What has happened to the KISS formulae?
Elgato seemed to be the answer, but has got a great range of mixed revues.
10 years ago I purchased a Kworld transfer device, in the days of Windows 7. Tried to update drivers - another potential minefield, you end up navigating every possible download of rubbish! Totally impossible to get the download you want. Kworld web site is in a world of its own.
Lordsmurf appears to have sunk a minor fortune into this problem, but I only want to edit out feet of useless scenes and many hours of groundworks when I forgot to switch off my camcorder.
My Sony Camcorder works just fine, record and play.
I hope to use the windows video editing software, it looks simple and easy to use.
Simple advice please on how best to approach and solve this problem.
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  #5  
02-02-2021, 07:02 AM
dpalomaki dpalomaki is offline
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Quote:
...but I only want to edit out feet of useless scenes and many hours of groundworks when I forgot to switch off my camcorder.

Read more: Hi8 digitizing advise?
KISS and highest possible quality rarely go together.

A meaningful suggestion calls for a better understanding of your situation an objectives.

What model camcorder do you have?
How many tapes do you have?
What distribution format(s) do you have in mind for the end product?
Do you intend to do any editing beyond simple cuts of "footage"? e.g., color correction, noise reduction, etc.
Do you have a time frame in by which you want to complete the project?
Do you have a budget in terms of time and money that you are willing to invest?
Do you want to take this on as a hobby, or just get the project of of you hair so you can do something else?

The simplest (short of hiring it out) and fastest approach is to play the tapes into a DVD recorder (if you can find one) and use the pause button to cut unwanted footage. With a decent player and recorder the end result should look about as good as playing the tapes directly to a TV.
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  #6  
02-02-2021, 04:40 PM
WGG1848 WGG1848 is offline
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Thank you for your thoughts and advices.
However, as it is clearly possible to transfer the contents of the tapes to a recorder and a dvd without too much trouble, why o why can’t I simply download these tapes direct to my computer?
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  #7  
02-02-2021, 05:11 PM
dpalomaki dpalomaki is offline
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Quote:
... why o why can’t I simply download these tapes direct to my computer?

Read more: http://www.digitalfaq.com/forum/newreply.php?do=newreply&noquote=1&p=74934#ixzz6lM BOonHu
Is that a rhetorical or a serious question?

It boils down to having (or not having) the correct hardware and software in or connected to the computer. Initially PCs were designed for word processing, spread sheets, connection to main frame computers, and other related business and game purposes. Video editing, optical media (e.g., DVD), and the like came much later as PC became powerful enough to do video processing. Because most people were not into video editing the related hardware and software were essentially an extra cost option (except for a period when IEEE1394 ports and Movie Maker were typically with the PC). In any case video on a PC involved several elements that need integration. The PC makes were not going to add $100+ in cost to provide capability only 1 in perhaps 500 userss will take advantage of use. The demand for that capability is enough to support a niche market, but not as a standard equipment.

The direct to DVD recorders are a single purpose device built to record and playback optical media. A few models included a VHS or 8mm tape player as well in the package. That was one answer to the niche market.

Another other issue is that consumer home video formats like Video8 and VHS were designed in the 1970s to the video standards of the day, and were price point driven meaning that they ere designed to provide a first generation recorded image that was generally acceptable to average viewers on the TV sets of the day. TV sets were designed to cope with the realities of over the air broadcasts with multi-path, atmospheric effects, and other signal fidelity issues and thus were forgiving. But the VHS/Video8 VCR output is a rather sloppy signal electrically speaking, they are a subject to of electrical and mechanical variations from both manufacturing tolerances and aging That is why some VCRs, TBCs, and capture cards do better than others because they can deal with the sloppy signal. And variations between the original recorder and playback equipment 20+ years later do require some hand holding for best results.
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  #8  
02-05-2021, 06:00 AM
WGG1848 WGG1848 is offline
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Dpalomaki, many thanks for your time and thoughts, I do apologise.
I am serious about how best to solve this in a way that gives me a chance to leave 30 odd years of amateur filming to my grandkids. Clips taken on many trips have resulted in hours of boring scenes. I have some 200 + tapes to get through!
Your guidance has certainly focused my thoughts, I originally looked for ‘transfer devices’.
External ones ranged from £2 up to over £100. Internal cards? Well £60 and £100’s.
Revues of these were extremely mixed, that created my confusion.
Your suggestion of transferring them to dvd sounds very sensible, as it creates another backup facility.
Sony have done a M6 dvd recorder, will look out for something like that.
Thanks again for your guidance.
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  #9  
01-23-2022, 01:29 PM
TurtleTom100 TurtleTom100 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WGG1848 View Post
Dpalomaki, many thanks for your time and thoughts, I do apologise.
I am serious about how best to solve this in a way that gives me a chance to leave 30 odd years of amateur filming to my grandkids. Clips taken on many trips have resulted in hours of boring scenes. I have some 200 + tapes to get through!
Your guidance has certainly focused my thoughts, I originally looked for ‘transfer devices’.
External ones ranged from £2 up to over £100. Internal cards? Well £60 and £100’s.
Revues of these were extremely mixed, that created my confusion.
Your suggestion of transferring them to dvd sounds very sensible, as it creates another backup facility.
Sony have done a M6 dvd recorder, will look out for something like that.
Thanks again for your guidance.
Hey I am looking for exactly what you were. I lost my dad last May and it was a task he said he wanted to do but unfortunately is no longer able to so I wish to do it for him.

Did you get any further? I was going to start a new thread but as you are after exactly the same I thought I would drop a post here
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  #10  
01-24-2022, 06:17 AM
WGG1848 WGG1848 is offline
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Hello
I am sorry to say I could not find a solution to this. Like you I taped hours of scenes, thinking editing would be easy. NO SUCH LUCK.
I purchased a high end digital tape deck with all the so called elements with in it to do the job. Maybe in the hands of a full time editor it could be achieved. I found it a nightmare.
I did get one tape down in size for general viewing, but the time it took was not acceptable with the amount of tapes awaiting.
Downloading the finished effort to a disk also proved to be beyond the wit of man.
It downloaded, I think, only for it not to play on my all singing all dancing disk player in the lounge.
The message ‘ Content not recognised’ came as another blow. This would be the answer for my grandkids in the future.
Why play on my computer but not on my disk player, all attempts to find some settings did not solve anything.
I gave up despite researching a lot of possible solutions.
The answer to this in my case was to buy a second camcorder, as a backup, and playback the tapes via the camcorder. Fast forwarding to the interesting bits.
I know this is not the solution you were wanting, but as usual, big firms are constantly bring out new systems, some better, some worse. This all leaves Joe Public, completely at a loss regarding outdated kit.
To add a footnote, when ever I ask the my own children, grandchildren and even great grandchildren if they want to see some of my videos, the answer is not just now grandad!
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  #11  
01-24-2022, 08:29 AM
traal traal is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WGG1848 View Post
why o why can’t I simply download these tapes direct to my computer?
The closest to that is using a digital8 player (or camcorder) to play and digitize the tape, and a computer with FireWire to "download" it to an .avi file. You'll need to choose a digital8 player that can digitize analog tapes to FireWire because not all can.
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  #12  
01-24-2022, 12:24 PM
TurtleTom100 TurtleTom100 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WGG1848 View Post
Hello
I am sorry to say I could not find a solution to this. Like you I taped hours of scenes, thinking editing would be easy. NO SUCH LUCK.
I purchased a high end digital tape deck with all the so called elements with in it to do the job. Maybe in the hands of a full time editor it could be achieved. I found it a nightmare.
I did get one tape down in size for general viewing, but the time it took was not acceptable with the amount of tapes awaiting.
Downloading the finished effort to a disk also proved to be beyond the wit of man.
It downloaded, I think, only for it not to play on my all singing all dancing disk player in the lounge.
The message ‘ Content not recognised’ came as another blow. This would be the answer for my grandkids in the future.
Why play on my computer but not on my disk player, all attempts to find some settings did not solve anything.
I gave up despite researching a lot of possible solutions.
The answer to this in my case was to buy a second camcorder, as a backup, and playback the tapes via the camcorder. Fast forwarding to the interesting bits.
I know this is not the solution you were wanting, but as usual, big firms are constantly bring out new systems, some better, some worse. This all leaves Joe Public, completely at a loss regarding outdated kit.
To add a footnote, when ever I ask the my own children, grandchildren and even great grandchildren if they want to see some of my videos, the answer is not just now grandad!
Thankyou for replying, that does suck a little bit. There must be ways, I believe my dad tried with a capture device but I can't find it. I do believe he still has the camcorder so with that being said it may be possible to get a firewire transfer pci card and get the data on to pc. And then use the likes of handbrake or makemkv to digitise the video.

I would hazard a guess and say yes the video quality will be awful as even myself (32 years of existence) seeing vhs clips makes me wonder how my eyes were ever able to define what was going on as a child.

For myself I am not bothered about editing I can do all that after if needed using Adobe, would just be nice to get them in a file that can be read via USB or at least a dvd disc.

What was your end file extension when burning to a disc?

Quote:
Originally Posted by traal View Post
The closest to that is using a digital8 player (or camcorder) to play and digitize the tape, and a computer with FireWire to "download" it to an .avi file. You'll need to choose a digital8 player that can digitize analog tapes to FireWire because not all can.
So if I can locate the camcorder and grab a firewire pair adaptor for the pc is it possible to get the data onto the pc and then from there look to digitise and make it a readable format?
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  #13  
01-24-2022, 01:02 PM
traal traal is offline
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Originally Posted by TurtleTom100 View Post
So if I can locate the camcorder and grab a firewire pair adaptor for the pc is it possible to get the data onto the pc and then from there look to digitise and make it a readable format?
The idea is that the camcorder would do the digitizing instead of the PC, then the PC would "download" the digital stream. But when the source is an analog tape, it's just as easy to use a USB capture card like one of these, plus you can get better results.
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