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Thread: New to digital Camcorders....HELP!!!

  1. #1

    Default New to digital Camcorders....HELP!!!

    Hi, I just recently purchased the Panasonic PV-DV203 Digital Camcorder and I have some questions I hope somebody can help me out with.
    First of all, it may seem like a stupid question but I believe that I am only recording in 12 bit (says so on screen) because when I play back what I have recorded on my tv using the A/V cables it came with, the quality is pretty bad. I mean, there is no big problems with it's appereance but it really does not look any better then my really old VHS-C camcorder that I just sold (I have read reviews that have said that it plays back in almost DVD quality). So is there any way I can get it to record at a higher quality? I have read the entire instruction booklet and can't find anything to show me how to record at the best visual quality.
    Second of all, the movie software that my camcorder came with is just plain horrible. I can only transfer 30 second long clips. So I downloaded Windows Movie Maker 2 and it does not detect my usb video device, although it says it is working properly in my control panel. (The software it came with detects it fine).
    Any help by anybody who owns the same camcorder as me, or just anybody who knows anything about digital camcorders would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

    P.S. I don't own a DVD burner so I can't burn my movies to a DVD.

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    I think you'll find that 12 bit refers to the audio, not the video. What connections are you using to link your cam up to your TV? What is the quality like on the cams LCD screen?

    With regards to the transfer of footage, do NOT use USB. Capture using the DV (firewire) connection of your camcorder. Read the sticky FAQ at the top of this section for more info.

  3. #3

    Default

    Well I connect my camcorder to the TV using the supplied A/V cables it came with. It looks a lot better on the screen in my camcorder then it does on my tv although it still does not look awesome. It looks very grainy on my tv and like I said before, does not really look any better then my old VHS-C camcorder that I used to have. I have read the instruction manual a few times but can't find anything on how to record using the best resolution.
    As for connecting to the pc, I will do that (I thought I should just connect it using my USB cable) but the only downside is that I don't have a dvd burner so I can't really do anything with it. My brother does though and he lives upstairs so I am sure I can just send it to him.

  4. #4
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    Greetings,
    This might be a complete red herring but is your tv one of these that doesn`t like a mixture of inputs connected at the same time? Like for example the rear normal inputs and a front (or side) AV input together causing signal degradation? I managed to get something similar once on my Sony tv cos it wasn`t too happy with both the input from my camera coming in at the AV on the front whilst I had a signal coming in on the scart connection at the back... (forgot to switch of the VCR that was connected!).
    Equipment freak who must learn that technique and opportunity are the key elements to success - not credit card balance!

  5. #5

    Default

    Well I use the front A/V connection on my tv set and that is the only thing connected to my tv. I don't have a dvd player or VCR connected to this specific tv. And it is not like a really old tv, its actually pretty new. Not only that but it doesnt show too well in any tv I use. I am not interested too much in using my computer with my camcorder to edit my videos or anything. I just want to video tape family events and be able to watch it later on my television with the best quality as possible. At this point I believe that the quality was better when I watched my video tapes on my TV with my old VHS-C camcorder. What is the best way to have high quality on my tv? (I dont have a DVD burner on my pc or a Firewire adapter so I can't burn it to a DVD). Also, does anybody who has the same camcorder as me Panasonic PV-DV203 know of any way to higher the recorded video quality?

  6. #6
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    What kind of lighting conditions were you filming in? Had you left the auto exposure in an incorrect setting? Have a look at pages 24 & 25 which deal with the backlight and auto exposure settings.

    You might also want to manually adjust the white balance settings as described on page 28, and the manual focus on page 29.

  7. #7
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    Does the tele have a menu to set up the AV for PAL and NTSC? It might be selected to the wrong one. If you have tried other teles and they are all bad quality video, take the cam back to the shop and ask them to try it. If it's still poor quality ask for your money back.

  8. #8

    Default

    Ok, thank you very much for your help, I really appreciate it. It's nice the more advanced users can help out us non-advanced users such as myself. However I have just a few more questions, hopefully you can help me out again....
    First of all, I gave up on connecting my camcorder to my TV using the A/V cables and am now going the route of burning my movies to a DVD and playing it in my DVD player. I purchased and installed a Firewire adapter card because I was told the quality would be better then through by connecting it through the USB ports. Therefore I have 2 questions for you:
    1) Will the quality of my movies be better if I go through my PC and burn them to a DVD as opposed to directly connecting my camcorder to my TV using A/V cables? Or does it not really matter and should I expect the same quality.
    2) Not really related to the above, but I tried using Windows Movie Maker, and for some reason, when I save my movies and play them back in winamp, the quality is horrendous (The color is completly off....white houses appear yellow, red cars appear purple, etc.) HOWEVER, when preview mode, my videos look fine. Also, I know it's a problem with Windows Movie Maker because when I saved my movies using Arcsoft Showbiz and played them back in Winamp the picture is fine, with correct colors and everything.
    Thank you once again in advance.....

  9. #9

    Default

    Ok, thank you very much for your help, I really appreciate it. It's nice the more advanced users can help out us non-advanced users such as myself. However I have just a few more questions, hopefully you can help me out again....
    First of all, I gave up on connecting my camcorder to my TV using the A/V cables and am now going the route of burning my movies to a DVD and playing it in my DVD player. I purchased and installed a Firewire adapter card because I was told the quality would be better then through by connecting it through the USB ports. Therefore I have 2 questions for you:
    1) Will the quality of my movies be better if I go through my PC and burn them to a DVD as opposed to directly connecting my camcorder to my TV using A/V cables? Or does it not really matter and should I expect the same quality.
    2) Not really related to the above, but I tried using Windows Movie Maker, and for some reason, when I save my movies and play them back in winamp, the quality is horrendous (The color is completly off....white houses appear yellow, red cars appear purple, etc.) HOWEVER, when preview mode, my videos look fine. Also, I know it's a problem with Windows Movie Maker because when I saved my movies using Arcsoft Showbiz and played them back in Winamp the picture is fine, with correct colors and everything.
    Thank you once again in advance.....

  10. #10

    Default

    Ok, thank you very much for your help, I really appreciate it. It's nice the more advanced users can help out us non-advanced users such as myself. However I have just a few more questions, hopefully you can help me out again....
    First of all, I gave up on connecting my camcorder to my TV using the A/V cables and am now going the route of burning my movies to a DVD and playing it in my DVD player. I purchased and installed a Firewire adapter card because I was told the quality would be better then through by connecting it through the USB ports. Therefore I have 2 questions for you:
    1) Will the quality of my movies be better if I go through my PC and burn them to a DVD as opposed to directly connecting my camcorder to my TV using A/V cables? Or does it not really matter and should I expect the same quality.
    2) Not really related to the above, but I tried using Windows Movie Maker, and for some reason, when I save my movies and play them back in winamp, the quality is horrendous (The color is completly off....white houses appear yellow, red cars appear purple, etc.) HOWEVER, when preview mode, my videos look fine. Also, I know it's a problem with Windows Movie Maker because when I saved my movies using Arcsoft Showbiz and played them back in Winamp the picture is fine, with correct colors and everything.
    Thank you once again in advance.....

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