Top of Sidebar
Mission Statement
Books, Equipment, Software, and Training Reviews
Film Critiques
Community Section
Savings and Links
Bottom of Sidebar
Back to the Home Page

Recording HDV to Hard Drive

by John Beale

[Editorial Comment: The following tip from John Beale is designed to work with HDV cameras, such as the Sony Z1U or the JVC DY-100U, that use an MPEG-2 codec to record.]

Read ReviewPurchase_linkThe built-in tape drive on [an HDV] camera is convenient, but it occasionally has drop-outs (see also Sony's statement on dropouts.) Since [Sony's] HDV records in blocks of 0.5 second, a dropout gives you half a second of black video and muted audio. I consider this unacceptable in a professional environment. You can avoid tape drop outs by recording the HDV signal via firewire to an external hard disk drive. There are dedicated hard drives for the purpose, although currently most record only plain DV, and would require at least a firmware upgrade to accomodate HDV.

You can also use a laptop or notebook PC with built-in or external USB2 or firewire drive. I know Vegas 6 and DV-Rack with the HDV add-on can record HDV, but there is a simpler alternative: a freely downloadable program called CAPDVHS (thanks John Jay at DVInfo for pointing this out.) CapDVHS was designed for D-VHS decks but it can capture MPEG-2 from any firewire source, including for example HDV cameras. It requires Windows XP. It works fine on my Dell Inspiron 9300, but does not work on my desktop WinXP box for unknown reasons (says "Error 80040217: Cannot connect SampleGrabber").

(Reprinted with permission from )

Mission | Tips & Tricks | Equipment & Software Reviews | Film Critiques
Groups & Community | Links & Savings
| Home

Contact Us Search Submit Films for Critique