I have been using Pinnacle's Studio 8 for some time now to produce "movies" of 1 - 11/2 hours each. I use Studio's DV codec to capture AVIs. I understand this produces best results as I am not reliant on real time MPEG conversion. I capture full quality at 200MB per minute. i.e. 12GB per hour.
So far I have output my finished productions to VHS or VCD and archived the "original" back to my camera. However, i have now spashed out on a DVD writer and am thinking of archiving to DVD as well as or instead of using DV tape.
If I stick with the AVI files I will need to split them into 4.7GB chunks - about 3 discs per hour. However, an MPEG at 10000 bit rate (i.e. highest possible quality in Studio of the same production would fit on a single DVD. Studio can work with AVI, MPEG or a mixture of both in the same project so from the perspective of later use it doesn't matter which format I use.
Does anyone know what (if any) quality I would lose in this process or is the MPEG at such bit rate effectively loss free? Do you have a link to an info site on the subject?