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Thread: Pro quality capture card/usb box?

  1. #1

    Default Pro quality capture card/usb box?

    Hi everybody, I've been using a V-Stream Xpert USB2.0 DVD Maker to capture video from a normal VCR, and found the captures very pixellated. I then bought a H&B TX-100 USB box and tried that. While the captures were no longer pixellated, they seemed to about only half the resolution of the picture I could see on my TV at the same time as watching the recording on my PC. I've tried all the recording format (MPEG2, MPEG4, DIVX) at high quality, and it makes no difference. Is this just what I have to expect the quality to be like, or are there more expensive cards (or preferably a USB box as my PC is in a different room to my monitor and mouse/keyboard) that will give me perfect quality archiving? I want it to look exactly the same as the picture I can see on my TV from the original tape, and I'm sure this must be possible. The two solutions I've tried so far were extremely cheap, (25 and 40 respectively), so I don't mind paying 200 or more if I have to, to get it done right.
    I have about 800 video tapes that I want to archive, things I taped off TV since 1986 or so, and I want to get them done right the first time, at the best possible quality.
    I apologise in advance if this question has already been asked and answered here, I did search but couldn't come up with any answers.
    Many thanks for your help in advance.

  2. #2

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    I've been looking into other options, and I've read somebody on another site say that they solved their problems by buying a normal home DVD recorder, transferring their VHS tapes onto that, and then putting the DVDs into their PC and editing them from there. Is this a good solution? (I don't mind what I do as long as the copies are as good as possible).

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    Keele
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    I got a very neat little piece of equipment about a year and a half ago (when i still had an analogue camcorder) called Pinnacle Linx. I'm not sure whether they sell it anymore, but it's a little, USB connected gadget with 3 phono connectors (video, left and right). It only cost about 30 I think. I found that it gave the quality that I was looking for (which wasn't very high then) and it worked very well.

    Hope this helps.
    http://www.studioxpro.com

    :.: StudioX Productions :.:
    Dedicated to low-budget film-making

  4. #4

    Default

    I think your main problem is sticking with a USB device. From what I hear, only way to get decent quality from an external "box" if you will is to gp firewire or internal. dunno

  5. #5

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by seymore
    I got a very neat little piece of equipment about a year and a half ago (when i still had an analogue camcorder) called Pinnacle Linx. I'm not sure whether they sell it anymore, but it's a little, USB connected gadget with 3 phono connectors (video, left and right). It only cost about 30 I think. I found that it gave the quality that I was looking for (which wasn't very high then) and it worked very well.

    Hope this helps.
    Hi, that's exactly the problem I'm having - the quality is okay when viewed in a small window on my PC, but when I maximise the window, I can see the clear difference between the picture on my TV (which is great) and the picture the box is sending to the PC - in both cases (both boxes I've tried) the quality is nowhere near as good as the original video tape.

    I've just bought a DVD recorder and will try that - hopefully the quality will be better!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Glasgow
    Posts
    766

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    I've had vstream hardware before (for a whole day!) and it was crap. Driver support made it literally unusable with any app other than the bundled stuff, which was awful. I'd avoid.
    AMD Athlon 1700 (@2200mhz from 1466 sod the noise!) - 768mb pc3200 - 200GB Maxtor - Pioneer 106 - GF4 Ti4200 - twinhan/visionplus pci dvb-t - random pci analogue tv tuner - A7v600-x (to replace the a7n8x-d that died...) - random 17\" CRT
    Sony STR-DE425 & Eltax c205s;
    xBox w/20GB HDD- executer 2.3b;
    xBox - standard;
    Konica/Minolta dimage z10 w/2x512mb SD;
    iRiver h340;
    A silly amount of Cat-5 and usb cables

  7. #7

    Default

    Thanks for your replies - are there any better USB/Firewire converters out there? I don't mind paying extra, as long as the picture quality is perfect (as good as what I put into it). I can't find anything elsewhere on the 'net about this, and I'm quite surprised because surely nobody else can be satisfied with the low quality I've been getting?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Kent
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    I'm sure you could pick up a canopus ADVC 100 on ebay..

  9. #9

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    Hi Marc, thanks for the recommendation - will the quality be as good as possible on a PC? My master tapes are mainly old 1980s and early 1990s TV programmes, so the quality isn't professional standard by any means, but I don't want to buy another converter until I'm sure it's going to be really good quality. (I'm new to all this conversion business).

  10. #10

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    Is the Matrox RT.X10 suitable for what I want? (I know it's a PCI card so I'll have to move my video recorder nearer it). All I'm concerned about is the quality of the recorded video, the effects are secondary.

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