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Thread: Capture including gaps- which software?

  1. #1

    Default Capture including gaps- which software?

    A little pain in the neck that someone might have a quick answer to:

    I have DV tapes that have a mix of footage and gaps where nothing was recorded. I want to capture this, keeping the gaps IN the captured product. Have tried Movie Maker 2, Ulead Video Studio 10 plus, as well as Pure Motion Editstudio 5, none have this capability.

    Does anybody know of any capture or editing program with this feature?


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2006


    As far as I am aware, PCs very deliberately do not capture blank sections of mini DV tape. This is for the simple reason that there is literally no data to capture.

    During the transfer process, the PC is looking for 0's and 1's on the tape. If none are present, none can be captured.

    In order to introduce black sections you will need to add them in the edit.

    If using Windows Movie Maker (or indeed just about any video editing software), just prising the clips apart on the timeline so that there is a gap in between them will achieve this.

  3. #3


    Thanks for your help- I was afraid that might be the case.

    The problem with inserting breaks manually is that I couldn't do this with adequate millisecond precision...without the process taking weeks. We're talking hundreds of little breaks!

    Unless there is a program that can sort and space clips based on timestamp info?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2006


    You won't be able to get millisecond precision - the best you can get is 1-frame precision - ie 1/25th (or 1/30th if working with NTSC) of a second.

    You may be able to retain those black spaces if you don't capture directly via firewire. You could feed the footage out from your camera via the analogue outputs, rather than the firewire, using either an analogue capture card or device attached to your PC. Some cameras have an analogue to digital passthrough mode that allows you to connect an analogue device such as a VCR (but it could as easily be a digital camcorder). The analogue footage is effictively digitised and passed out via firewire to the PC.

    You will need an extra camera for this.

    Using this method will 'hide' the breaks from the PC. There may be a risk, however, that the breaks will not be black. They may be blue. You will also lose quality.

    I would personally stick with the direct firewire transfer. If you can capture each clip as an individual file, you should be able to lay them individually to the timeline, and place pre-constructed short black video clips after each one (am I correct in assuming that each black space is to be of the same duration?)

    Some software products allow the creation of storyboards which can later be automated to the timeline - you may find this could speed things up.

    Most videographers strive to ensure that there are no blank gaps in between shots on their tape, as they can cause all sorts of problems at capture stage due to breaks in timecode. I bet you wont use gaps again!

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