Need a suggestion for recording video to a medium in the easiest and quickest way possible. - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 04-11-2014, 08:53 AM - Thread Starter
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Without getting into much detail about where I work, we currently have a program where people, who are away from their families, read books while being recorded on a mini-DVD camcorder. This is extremely easy from a staffing standpoint where we require almost no intervention. The user goes into a room with a camcorder and book, records their session, then the camcorder automatically finalizes the DVD and it's ready to be played in a DVD player. We then mail both book and DVD to their family so that the children can read along.

Unfortunately, the DVD camcorder is pretty much obsolete at this point. The camcorders are getting more and more difficult to source and we really need to move to a different platform. Though physical media (particularly DVD's) are arguably starting to phase out, we need to be able to provide a easy stand-alone solution that will require very little to no staff intervention. As much as we'd like to go to a fully digital and online service, we have very severe bandwidth limitations and it is simply not possible to upload the video's to the internet. Furthermore, we cannot require the user to have to create an account for either the upload or retrieval of the video (which pretty much eliminates any service I can think of.)

I'm looking for help in coming up with a new way to allow this program to continue. From my initial research, my head is leaning towards a new camcorder platform that records to SD. That way, we can purchase bulk cheap SD cards, and send them with a USB SD card reader. This does drive costs up almost 10 fold. Where before we'd only have to purchase blank mini-DVD's, we now have to purchase 2GB SD cards and the USB reader, which is roughly $10 per use vs less than $1 per mini-DVD.

I'm completely open to any and all suggestions. I think ideally we'd like to stick to something that will record directly to DVD as a stand alone product (i.e. no computer needed), but am open to other mediums. The biggest concerns would be bandwidth, no requirement for the user to create an account, and cannot take any more time for staff than our current solution.

I think that this is the appropriate forum for this, but admins please move if necessary.

Thanks in advance!
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post #2 of 13 Old 04-11-2014, 09:55 AM
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Get a Sony camcorder that records to SD. Heck even HD ones are practically free today. http://store.sony.com/full-hd-60p-camcorder-zid27-HDRCX240//cat-27-catid-All-Handycam-Camcorders?vva_ColorCode=BC005&_t=pfm%3Dcategory
Then find one of these-probably on eBay. http://esupport.sony.com/US/p/model-home.pl?mdl=VBDMA1&LOC=3#/howtoTab
Insert SD card or connect the camera via USB put in a blank disc and hit record.
That's it. And best of all no software or PC to deal with.

It will even burn an HD Blu-ray from AVCHD recordings or a SD DVD from AVCHD content.
I have a couple versions of these and they work great.
Just make sure you get a compatible Sony camcorder.

Good luck
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post #3 of 13 Old 04-11-2014, 10:53 AM
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Upload the videos to youtube unlisted and give them the links.
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post #4 of 13 Old 04-11-2014, 12:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by b01001101w View Post

Without getting into much detail about where I work, we currently have a program where people, who are away from their families, read books while being recorded on a mini-DVD camcorder. This is extremely easy from a staffing standpoint where we require almost no intervention. The user goes into a room with a camcorder and book, records their session, then the camcorder automatically finalizes the DVD and it's ready to be played in a DVD player. We then mail both book and DVD to their family so that the children can read along.

Unfortunately, the DVD camcorder is pretty much obsolete at this point. The camcorders are getting more and more difficult to source and we really need to move to a different platform. Though physical media (particularly DVD's) are arguably starting to phase out, we need to be able to provide a easy stand-alone solution that will require very little to no staff intervention. As much as we'd like to go to a fully digital and online service, we have very severe bandwidth limitations and it is simply not possible to upload the video's to the internet. Furthermore, we cannot require the user to have to create an account for either the upload or retrieval of the video (which pretty much eliminates any service I can think of.)

I'm looking for help in coming up with a new way to allow this program to continue. From my initial research, my head is leaning towards a new camcorder platform that records to SD. That way, we can purchase bulk cheap SD cards, and send them with a USB SD card reader. This does drive costs up almost 10 fold. Where before we'd only have to purchase blank mini-DVD's, we now have to purchase 2GB SD cards and the USB reader, which is roughly $10 per use vs less than $1 per mini-DVD.

I'm completely open to any and all suggestions. I think ideally we'd like to stick to something that will record directly to DVD as a stand alone product (i.e. no computer needed), but am open to other mediums. The biggest concerns would be bandwidth, no requirement for the user to create an account, and cannot take any more time for staff than our current solution.

I think that this is the appropriate forum for this, but admins please move if necessary.

Thanks in advance!

Keep in mind most camcorders use the "AVCHD" format...due to the card file format limitations when it reaches 4GB, (which it can easily do when shooting HD), a new file is created.
Typically you could use either the camera's included software to join the files or video editing software...not joining them with the proper software will cause a small gap/skip in the playback.

...although there may also be cameras out there that can create a continuous, seamless mov file.. I think the Sanyo/Panasonic pistol grip pocket cameras can do that/perhaps others...I don't really know which ones, exactly.

Anther thing to consider is maybe buy a good webcam/connect via USB (or camcorder with right connections to PC/video in) and stream it to the PC hard drive/continuous record and then burn that file to DVD.
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post #5 of 13 Old 04-11-2014, 06:31 PM
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Originally Posted by jogiba View Post

Upload the videos to youtube unlisted and give them the links.
Joe,

You over looked what he wrote: "we have very severe bandwidth limitations and it is simply not possible to upload the video's to the internet"

Bill
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post #6 of 13 Old 04-11-2014, 07:15 PM
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When I was a Navy Pilot during Vietnam I bought what I think were called "Golden Books". I read them into a cassette recorder with instructions like "turn the page" and "see the bear". I mailed them home and my 2.5 year old son would "read" them with me. When I returned after 6 months, he was the only small kid in the squadron that remembered who his Dad was.

Keep up the program.

It was not clear what your recipients have for equipment. You wrote that they could view what is on USB card readers. Does that mean they have laptops or desktops with optical drives? If so, it seems that you can elect to record in a univaral format like ".MP4" and copy the videos as data files to a DVD and mail that. Except for the copy step, the costs are the same.

A little more complicated would be using the software that all new cameras come with to "burn" DVDs. The recipients can then watch like they have always watched them.
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post #7 of 13 Old 04-12-2014, 05:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bsprague View Post

Joe,

You over looked what he wrote: "we have very severe bandwidth limitations and it is simply not possible to upload the video's to the internet"

Bill
I missed that Bill.
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post #8 of 13 Old 04-12-2014, 08:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jogiba View Post

I missed that Bill.
Joe,

Can you think of a simple and quick way to go from recording on a current, easily availabel camcorder to a cheap and mailable disk that is readable on a variety of common players from laptops to DVD players.

The best I can come up with requires at least a simple editor. No matter what I think of, it adds a time consuming step to the OP's process.

Bill
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post #9 of 13 Old 04-12-2014, 08:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bsprague View Post

Joe,

Can you think of a simple and quick way to go from recording on a current, easily availabel camcorder to a cheap and mailable disk that is readable on a variety of common players from laptops to DVD players.

The best I can come up with requires at least a simple editor. No matter what I think of, it adds a time consuming step to the OP's process.

Bill

As I posted up top:
Get a Sony camcorder that records to SD. Heck even HD ones are practically free today. http://store.sony.com/full-hd-60p-camcorder-zid27-HDRCX240//cat-27-catid-All-Handycam-Camcorders?vva_ColorCode=BC005&_t=pfm%3Dcategory
Then find one of these-probably on eBay. http://esupport.sony.com/US/p/model-home.pl?mdl=VBDMA1&LOC=3#/howtoTab
Insert SD card or connect the camera via USB put in a blank disc and hit record.
That's it. And best of all no software or PC to deal with.
Nothing can possibly be easier.
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post #10 of 13 Old 04-12-2014, 11:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bsprague View Post

Joe,

Can you think of a simple and quick way to go from recording on a current, easily availabel camcorder to a cheap and mailable disk that is readable on a variety of common players from laptops to DVD players.

The best I can come up with requires at least a simple editor. No matter what I think of, it adds a time consuming step to the OP's process.

Bill
Bill, it looks like trans_lux's solution should work.
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post #11 of 13 Old 04-12-2014, 01:19 PM
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It really does work great.
I gave them as gifts to my family a couple years ago with a bunch of blank media.
All of a sudden all these home movies started floating around.
I like to think I'm a pretty serious video hobbyist.
I have several generations of SD & HD cameras and primarily use the Adobe suite. I recently dipped my toe into Final Cut.
And I even use this when I want to get something out fast.
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post #12 of 13 Old 04-12-2014, 07:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trans_lux View Post

As I posted up top:
Get a Sony camcorder that records to SD. Heck even HD ones are practically free today. http://store.sony.com/full-hd-60p-camcorder-zid27-HDRCX240//cat-27-catid-All-Handycam-Camcorders?vva_ColorCode=BC005&_t=pfm%3Dcategory
Then find one of these-probably on eBay. http://esupport.sony.com/US/p/model-home.pl?mdl=VBDMA1&LOC=3#/howtoTab
Insert SD card or connect the camera via USB put in a blank disc and hit record.
That's it. And best of all no software or PC to deal with.
Nothing can possibly be easier.
I think you're right.

Three years ago I bought a Panasonic camcorder. Listed in the instruction manual were optional accessories that included a similar DVD recorder. They seem to be going away! The Panasonic camera I bought at the first of the year does not seem to have the same option.

Bill
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post #13 of 13 Old 04-12-2014, 10:59 PM
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Yah they are getting harder and harder to find.
Clearly they did not sell or they would still be around.
I still think it's a viable product for someone who wants a quick and most importantly easy way to share videos that are nearly universally playable.
As natural as it is for us to produce in the digital world many, no most don't no or don't care to know.
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