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Thread: a few questions

  1. #1

    Default a few questions

    Hey everyone, this is my first post so i'll throw in an introduction too.

    My names matt, I'm a trial biker and i have an interest in photography too, i've decided to get in to filming as well. I have just bought a Samsung VP-D351 camcorder second-hand with some lenses thrown in. I am a real amateur with all of this, so don't attack me with jargon, i've come here to learn.

    so now it's question time:

    - I need a step-up ring to fit my camera, the lens/thread width is 30 (i don't know the name of the symbol, but it's the crossed out zero one) to the adaptor for my fish eye lens, the writing on the side reads "RAYNOX RA5237 F52-M37mm"

    - After downloading the manual i've found the interface for my camera to PC is "IEEE 1394" which with my brief googling means it's a firewire port correct? i'm only used to USB, my laptop doesn't have any firewire ports, is there a firewire-to-USB cable? do i need some kind of adapter? my laptop has a few ports i'm not quite sure what theyre used for, what is the symbol for firewire please?

    - I need to source some mini DV tapes, what brands are recomended? how much should i pay? where am i best to buy them from? are all DV tapes made to the same sizes or do i need samsung specific ones?

    - Can anyone recomend a good free video editing software, is there a gimp equivalent for video editing?

    - Is there any equipment i should look to buy to help with filming, i have a tripod and lens cleaning gear already, is there anything else worth picking up?

    just a point to add, i'm a student with a part time job, so expensive solutions, or telling me to buy a new camera won't be an option any time soon

    thanks alot!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Western Europe


    If your camcorder has the Firewire socket then use it instead of USB. Your laptop may or may not have a Firewire port but it should have either a PCMCIA or the newer Express Card slot. You should be able to purchase a Firewire card that can push into this slot and it will have at least 2 Firewire sockets on it. You just need to get a 4 pin to 6 pin Firewire cable to connect your camcorder to your computer. Your computer will auto detect it and it is just a matter of connecting everything up. Do not use Firewire to USB devices as they are useless.

    If you are using a computer running Windows then you already should have Windows Movie Maker on it, it will allow you to capture the video, edit it and make a new file. If you want to do more serious editing then download a 30 day trial of Adobe Premiere Elements and see if you like it and if it will run smoothly on your computer. The full version costs about 65 to purchase. If you are using a MAC then use iMovie to get you started.

    The best mini dv tapes I have used over the past 9 years have been from Sony. They have given me the best results with minimum trouble. Spare battery, external mic if there is a socket on your camcorder to connect one, a good carrying bag

  3. #3


    thankyou very much! after digging out the box and spec of my laptop, it turns out i have a firewire port, it's a micro one like on the camcorder, so i've ordered the appropriate cable, some tapes and a step up ring for my fisheye lens, yay!

    Will windows movie maker handle me taking the footage from my camera to my laptop, or do i need the software from my camera? thanks

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Western Europe


    So you have a 4 pin to 4 pin set up, you just need a cable with the same connectors on it. Yes, WMM will allow you to capture from your camcorder, you don't need to install anything else. One thing though, the spec of your laptop may not be able to write the video files to your hard disk as it is capturing.

    Is your laptop up to date? Did you defragment the hard disk recently? You need to do this a lot more now when you start to use video capture. Disable any screensavers, antivirus software and any other utilities you have running on your laptop before capture as some can affect the process or cause it to stop. You can re-enable them after you're done.

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