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Thread: analog to DV conversion

  1. #1
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    Default analog to DV conversion

    Sorry for this long, elaborate question but I have a number of analog video tapes that I want to convert to DV to move to my computer for editing and burning to DVDs. After considering my options for converting the analog files I decided to buy a miniDV camcorder that was capable of receiving an analog signal from an analog camera and converting to DV format and then transferring the video to the computer via Firewire. In order to save money I bought a used Canon ZR65 MC on eBay. This model was released sometime around 2004. I have started to do the transfers but have not been impressed by the video quality as viewed in Adobe Premier Elements v3.02.
    Is the conversion process an industry standard that all manufacturers use or are there varying levels of conversion quality? I ask b/c I'm wondering if I should buy a new, more expensive model in hopes of getting an improved conversion algorithm or is there no such thing as "new & improved" when it comes to analog conversions?
    Any help will be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
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    I am sure different equipment will performvariously, however i would have thought that any camera that does 'pass through' digitising is unlikely to give unacceptable results. Perhaps not... Can you post a still as an example of the results?

  3. #3
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    Here is a still from one of my videos. It looks better than in Adobe PE (I ran deinterlacing when I captured it). When running the clip there are a number of random streaks of white that flash like you might see in old 8mm movies. These don't show up in the still.
    These flashes continue to appear in the final MPEG2 product on DVD. But also, there just seems to be a loss of clarity/sharpness in the output.

    Another factor may be that my memory of the videos is faulty. I haven't viewed them in 7 years but recall being impressed by their quality when played back on my TV. I now have a large screen HD LCD which is almost always tuned to HD channels b/c SD seems so degraded in comparision. Perhaps I am unconsciously judging against the HD TV standard.

    I don't know. This is a special archive for me and it is important that I get this right so any guidance will be greatly appreciated.
    Thanks.
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Hmmm... I hear what you say about other probs but that still looks darn good for video from an older analogue camera - what was the cam??

    Also - why are you deinterlacing - this effectively halfs (well at worst) the vertical res and does soften video. Best to keep interlaced video interalced.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark W View Post
    Hmmm... I hear what you say about other probs but that still looks darn good for video from an older analogue camera - what was the cam??

    Also - why are you deinterlacing - this effectively halfs (well at worst) the vertical res and does soften video. Best to keep interlaced video interalced.
    Thanks for taking a look at my still. I'm new to video editing and not sure what to expect for results. The still is a product of the converted video being viewed in Adobe PE. It was deinterlaced for viewing, the video is not deinterlaced. The old analog camera is a Sony TR101. Old, bought in 1993, and cheap, even back when I bought it.

    It sounds like I'm getting as good as I can expect. Does that mean that upgrading my MiniDV camera used for the passthru won't have a benefit for me?

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    I dont want to sound 100% sure but I think the picture from that old sony is excellent. I dont think a better capture soloution will add much to the quality. The source is the most important bit in the quality chain.

    That old sony is as good (better in some areas, worse in others) as many value DV cameras you can buy now - well the still is at least.

  7. #7
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    Sorry for the slow response, been out and about. Thanks, Mark, I needed another viewpoint to assure I was doing the best that can be done for these videos.

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