Don't take this personally shaun, but I've typed this explanation too many times to repeat in full (again). If you want an indepth answer, search the forums. The brief answer is:
Depends on what you intend to do with the footage, what equipment you have and your budget.For example should i capture existing video (vhs) in mpg,avi or wmv formats which would be more suitable?
1) If you don't want to edit and have a few hundred quid: get a hardware MPEG2 encoding capture card to encode straight to MPEG2 and then author a DVD with this.
2) If you want to edit and have a few hundred quid: get an analogue to digital converter such as the ADVC110 from canopus. Capture directly to your editing application in DV AVI, edit, export to MPEG2.
3) If you don't want to edit and are on a budget, but have a fast PC: Use a USB2 capture device and capture straight to MPEG2. May result in dropped frames and/or reduced quality.
4) If you want to edit and are on a budget, have a mediore PC and a lot of drivce space Capture using a cheap capture device to a lossless codec such as huffy.
Most of the are defined by the PAL or NTSC format. Variable to maximise quality include but are not limited to:When i burn to dvd is there any preferred format or settings that would be more effective?
1) Video and Audio Bitrate
i) the higher the bitrate, the better the video quality. subject to a maximum of 8,000kbps for compliant DVD
ii) scenes of high movement require higher bitrates.
iii) quality can be maintained at reduced file sizes by using a variable bitrate. This is useful for DVDs containing more than 1hour of video, which is the limit for a constant maximum bitrate with PCM audio
iv) More video at the maximum bitrate can be achieved by compressing audio using MPEG1 layer II or using AC3 audio. AC3 audio is more compatible, but the DVD standard requires at least one track of uncompressed audio (NTSC). Pal players tend to be more forgiving of MPEG1 audio.
2) GOP structure
MPEG2 uses a GOP (Group of Picture) structure with intraframe compression. Key frames (I frames) are used at predetermined intervals and predicted frames (B and P frames) are compressed based on the I frames. The longer the GOP structure, the more frames are "compressed" and the lower the quality for scenes of higher movement.
Because the DVD standard must be adhered to in order to create a compliant DVD.Why can't i just burn mpg's after all they are digital arn't they.