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  #1  
07-21-2011, 02:21 AM
naripeddi naripeddi is offline
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For high-end analog to digital capturing, I see Matrox, BlackMagic & Aja Kona cards are suggested on this site.

How about Aver Media products? I saw Aver Media also having a similar PCIe based HD Capture card (that captures through Component, Composite, S-Video & HDMI). Are they good enough?

Please throw some light, as I cannot go for Blackmagic since my computer doesn't have the specific x58-based motherboard that it requires. Matrox is extremely expensive.

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  #2  
07-24-2011, 12:00 AM
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Generally speaking, AVer Media has always been a manufacturer of lower-end cards. Five years ago, they were notorious for shoddy out-of-spec cards based on flawed chipsets. The geometry output of certain AVer cards was distorted, making people/shapes fat (wide), and the cards were limited in abilities due to poorly-written drivers. Some of that has changed, though not all.

It really depends on what you're looking to do.

Hauppauge still makes excellent cards. For example, the Hauppauge Colossus PCI Express Internal HD-PVR for about $135.
One user discusses his good experience here: New Hauppage Colossus HD-PVR internal card
Given a choice between Aver and Hauppauge, I'd go with Hauppauge.

Here's a brief comparison of AVer vs Hauppauge vs Blackmagic, posted by NJRoadfan in December 2010:

Quote:
AVermedia HD DVR PCIe
Pros: Supports uncompressed DirectShow capture. Good for VHS to DVD transfers. HDMI input. HDCP workaround exists. Cheap too.
Cons: Drivers and included application can be buggy on some systems. Need fast machine due to software encoding. No HDMI passthrough. A TBC is a must with analog capture from VCR sources, card is extremely sensitive to weak/unstable video sources.

AVermedia HD DVR USB
Pros: External, good for laptops. Built-in MPEG encoder. Component pass through
Cons: No HDMI input. No uncompressed capture or DirectShow support.

Hauppauge HD PVR USB
Pros: External, good for laptops. Built-in MPEG encoder. Component pass through. Digital audio input.
Cons: No HDMI input. No uncompressed capture or DirectShow support.

Black Magic Intensity PCIe
Pros: HDMI and analog pass through. Mac and Linux support. DirectShow capture support.
Cons: Poor customer support and buggy drivers.

Black Magic Intensity Shuttle USB 3.0
Pros: 1080p capture support. HDMI and analog pass through.
Cons: Impossible to get working correctly. Requires Core i7 machine with x58 chipset and specific USB 3.0 card. Buggy and broken drivers with poor customer support.

Coming Soon: Hauppauge Colossus HD-PVR PCIe
Hauppauge's answer to the AVer HD DVR PCIe and Intensity Pro. Supports HDMI in and digital audio I/O. Component pass through. Built in MPEG encoder. Chances are it won't support DirectShow capture though.
These days, most of these cards have other workflows in mind -- from HD ATSC broadcast sources (PVR card workflow), or for capturing from upsized/camera type inputs. The ability to capture traditional standard definition video is somewhat grafted on after the main workflow product is complete. Blackmagic really stands out above the others, using the internal PCIe card.

Older video cards, like the ATI 600, are preferable to these newer cards from Hauppauge or AVer.
(Note that Blackmagic isn't included in that statement.)

Amazon has an ATI 600 for $30: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...SIN=B00138EOH8
That's a great buy.

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  #3  
07-24-2011, 01:41 AM
NJRoadfan NJRoadfan is offline
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I have the AVerMedia HD DVR and use it for analog SD capture. Its been stable for the most part with the latest drivers, but the composite/s-video capture isn't as nice as the older ATI All-in-Wonders. Many complain that its video is overly sharp and has ringing problems, although my card doesn't seem to exhibit this. Either way, sharpness is not adjustable on the HD DVR like it is on the ATI 600 or the older AIWs. The composite input also doesn't have a decent comb filter, but thats easily avoided by using the S-video input, which one should be using anyway. I bought the HD DVR because of the low price, flexible inputs, and the fact that it has DirectShow drivers for capturing in VirtualDub.

It can be successfully used in VHS-to-DVD workflows, but one has to be aware of its limitations. Don't bother using it without a TBC like the AVT-8710 or Datavideo TBC-1000, the capture chip will drop frames on the slightest tear or sync problem. It expects NTSC video to strictly be RS-170A compliant. It also will not capture things like 240p video from sources like older video game consoles or even the JVC VCR "blue screen" if that matters (the ATI 600 will however).

As for Blackmagic, I honestly don't know how they stay in business with their buggy software, maybe their higher end products work flawlessly. I certainly wouldn't want to rely on their products or support if I was a pro in a studio. The Intensity Shuttle is a nice product that seems to never work for anybody. The Intensity Pro PCIe card is a better bet, but keep in mind that its pricey and overkill if you plan on only doing SD capture.

I'll agree that Hauppauge makes solid hardware, the only killer for me is their complete lack of DirectShow drivers and uncompressed capture on all their cards. Drivers are usually stable and every person I have installed a Hauppauge card for has been happy with it (mostly PVR/Media Center use, but one friend I know is using his older SD only card for VHS capturing). Being limited to a select few proprietary software applications (many of which are inflexible in terms of configuration) is a deal breaker for me however.
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  #4  
07-24-2011, 11:46 PM
naripeddi naripeddi is offline
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Thanks much for the replies.
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  #5  
07-25-2011, 12:30 AM
naripeddi naripeddi is offline
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LS, the ATI 600 Card on Amazon:

Will it work in PAL?
I see only one connector in the picture. Do they provide any external cables to connect to the analog sources?
Does it support S-Video?
I see it is a USB version. Is it as effective as the internal (PCI) cards for analog capture in Huffyuv?
Does it support sterio audio input?
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  #6  
07-25-2011, 12:37 AM
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lordsmurf lordsmurf is offline
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Q: Will it work in PAL?
A: Yes. AVI only, via VirtualDub. My guide will be published soon.

Q: I see only one connector in the picture. Do they provide any external cables to connect to the analog sources?
A: Yes. The photo on Amazon is lousy, with none of the parts shown beyond the main stick itself. The s-video/composite/audio connectors are on a break-out wire, from the side of the stick. (It is not routed through coax.)

Q: Does it support S-Video?
A: Yes, both s-video and composite.

Q: I see it is a USB version. Is it as effective as the internal (PCI) cards for analog capture in Huffyuv?
A: Yes, same chipsets compared to PCI versions of same card series.

Q: Does it support sterio audio input?
A: Yes, stereo audio inputs via standard RCA audio cables.

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  #7  
07-25-2011, 12:49 AM
naripeddi naripeddi is offline
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Super. Thanks LS!
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