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Compiling programs on the E80???

596 Views 7 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  cf066

I've just ordered an E80 and have read most of the threads on it as well as the manual, but I still haven't found an answer on how to do what I want to do, if it's even possible. Hopefully someone will be able to help me out.

OK, so what I'll be doing on this thing is regularly catching a bunch of snippets off the news and recording three hour programs of which I'll edit out 95% and keeping only 10 - 15 minutes of it - I'll be keeping all this on the HD. (It's all hockey, btw.) Now, from what I've read, it would appear that I'll end up with a million different programs that I'll want to archive to disk when it reaches the 2 hour mark. The problem is, as I understand it, not only will I be limited to 99 programs before I have to archive, but there's no way to edit them all together into a smooth running, contiguous segment. Is that true? I just want to hit Play and and watch the finished DVD from start to finish, not have to select a new program after each finishes or see a million long pauses between when the disk switches from one program to another. (I think I've read that you can watch all the programs on a disk without navigating them, but that there is a pause between each.) Is there any way that you can do what I want? Is there anyway to, for example, make a playlist of programs so that it all plays smoothly (but with chapter markers)?

Failing the above, I guess that one way to limit my number of programs to some degree is, when recording my news snippets, do what I do on VHS - record one snippet, hit pause, change the channel, record another, and so on - given this idea, how long will the E80 remain in pause mode, and when taken out, how quickly does it start recording again?

Well, I hope I gotten my objective across. Additionally, I hope I'm not asking anything that hasn't been asked before. I've tried to avoid that. Anyway, if anyone would be able to give me some kind of answer as to how to do what I want, I'd be forever grateful. I thought about buying the E100 but it didn't seem to address any of my issues any better than the E80. Can't wait until it arrives though.


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Hey again,

I see that the "dividing programs" topic ended up also discussing joining programs. The only work around given was making a playlist of programs and then dubbing to DVD-RAM. However, I'd much prefer DVD-R is that possible? If not, if I get a dvd ram/-r recorder for my computer, could I take a DVD-ram disc which was compiled in the fashion I described and turn it into a dvd-r? Or, could I burn a dvd-r with the 99 program problem, put it on a computer with a dvd-r burner and software and create a contiguous segment? I know it would depend on the software, but can most software do this? I'm thinking about buying a new Mac with an internal DVD-R (no -RAM) drive.

Also, I'm still curious as to how long you can keep a HD recording session on pause (for example, my VCR drops out of record mode after 5 min) and how quickly recording kicks back in after you release it.

Thanks agaon.

If it's anything like my HS2, you could use shorten segment (which you will indicate the start and stop positions of what you want REMOVED). This will keep that one recording as one recording, with the segments removed.

Then if you have multiple recordings, make a playlist that connects them all and then dub that playlist to DVD-R.

Or you can skip the shorten segment if you are afraid of making a mistake and losing a section you didnt want to lose and just make a playlist that skips over commercials (using the start and stop functions within creating a playlist).
Maybe this can be made a little more clear.

First, the limits for individual programs are:

Hard Drive = Limit of 250

Disk = Limit of 99 (RAM or -R)

Secondly, when your unit is set for "Seamless Playback", all programs play consecutively. Once you choose the starting program, all others below it (on program list) will automatically play in order until you reach the end of the list. No manual activation required for each program.

Thirdly, the "PAUSE" between each program is largely a function of how effectively you edited each program (i.e. shorten segment).

When I shorten segments (programs) I always use PAUSE and buttons to cut as closely as I can to the beginning and the end of each program. When played back "seamlessly", the "PAUSE between segments is so fast that you hardly have time to blink. Yes, the scene change can be abrupt if the background changes or severe audio change, but I can almost guarantee that 98% of users will never be bothered by it (far less than a full second). I personally don't like black screen transitions in my recordings, but whatever floats your boat.

Remember too that the brain cannot process changes as fast as the eye can see them. Moreover, I think most if us tend to measure this "transition dropout" effect by what we are accustomed to with VHS tapes. I'm sure you know how crummy it is for the scene to disintegrate unto a second or two of garbled color crawls, followed by a fairly loud audio whine. Properly done, the transition interruption (dropout) via DVD is about 1/10th of what you typically get on VHS. No color crawls at all!

Finally, particularly for the Hockey footage collector, if you want truly seamless editing (one long program) your other option is to dub back to your recorder from another player. Yes, external dubbing will cause a re-encode and reduce the picture quality, but if you start with a good clean source recorded at SP or XP quality, you can get a very good result after dubbing a second time, Also, the quality loss can be minimized by having a second unit that plays DVD-RAM. Since the Panny does not re-encode when dubbing to RAM disk, if you dub first to RAM disk, the re-dub from a second player back to your recorder is technically a "first dub" in terms of quality reduction. Virtually all Panasonic models will play RAM disks and can be purchased at Walmart for well below $100.

It seems that too many people moving into DVD recording are determined to match the pristine quality of commercial DVD's for almost everything they record. First, that isn't possible at all with home units. Second, the quality you CAN get for average home recordings (i.e. home movies, TV, from VHS, etc.) is way better than previously possible. I just think some people are chasing a dream and expecting too much. If you just want to watch better picture than you've ever had before, as well as having the advantages of quick navigation through scenes, etc. --- it ain't a problem. However, producing flawless commercial quality video is a whole different matter and requires much more expensive gear.

Hope this helps.
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Thanks. I do plan on using "shorten segment", that much seemed clear. What's confusing me is: 1) The best approach to minimizing my number of programs on HD in terms of catching a number of news clips (e.g. can you maintain an extended pause when in recording more); and 2) Seeing that it looks like I'm going to end up with quite a number of programs on the HD, what's the best method of laying it onto DVD-R in order to end up with a finished product which will play all of the programs seamlessly but with navigable chapter marks (the default 5 minute markers would be fine)?

After the answers given here, I'm even a bit MORE confused. It looks like I can make a playlist out of all the programs when burning to disk, but then again, even if I don't, it looks like the player would STILL play all the programs on the finished DVD continuously and without interruption. As such, why would one make a playlist? I'm glad to see that a seamless playback can be accomplished in SOME fashion though as I'd prefer not to dub between machines and loose an analog generation. I have a pretty good 40" HDTV and losses in quality can be quite noticeable.

Additionally, even though the HD has a max of 250 programs, the DVD-R has a max of 99, so as far as I can see, I'll have to archive off to DVD-R at the 99 mark regardless of if I could fit more on the DVD-R capacity-wise. Correct?

As to abrupt visual transitions between scenes, I'm not concerned about it. This is a hockey clip compellation, not Citizen Kane. I'm only concerned about noticeable glitches, digital noise, or pauses. Hopefully they can be avoided. I guess I'll have to see how good the unit is with this. I'm not expecting the unit to be able to produce commercial video (criminy, I'm recording a composite signal off of a digital HD cable box, not Digital Betacam) but what I would expect is decent quality video editing software - though I'm getting the impression that this unit doesn't have that. I mean, I used to do some video editing at a high-end outfit about ten years ago (though I was more on the graphics/animation/3D side of things) and we were occasionally toying around with fairly capable non-linear software back then (Avid) and well as some pretty passible stuff on consumer harware so I would have figured that at least the basic capability of those products would have found their way into HDD/DVD devices by now, but it looks like they're still somewhat in the stone ages. I wonder why. I guess I'll have to wait and see for myself, but I'm getting the impression that at this stage of the game just getting the footage pressed to disk will be my goal and I'll worry about making it all be nice and smooth in years to come. (Unless I do get that new Mac and just do a quick, but better, editing job with the source material that the E80 gave me to work with.)

Thanks again,

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Originally posted by cf066

Additionally, even though the HD has a max of 250 programs, the DVD-R has a max of 99, so as far as I can see, I'll have to archive off to DVD-R at the 99 mark regardless of if I could fit more on the DVD-R capacity-wise. Correct?
If you make a playlist out of say 50 programs on the hard drive so it's all on the one playlist, and then you dub that playlist to the dvd-r, it will show as 1 program on the finalized dvd-r with 5 minute chapter stops.

And to confuse you more: I do believe if you have multiple programs dubbed to the dvd it will play from one to the next... but I did not think you could go to the previous title/program without going back to the main menu.

I agree the editing capabilities need much improvement. Connecting programs would be great and a better editing so it truly is seamless editing... now transitions and titling over the screen would be very good too! Not to mention dubbing/adding audio tracks. (would be cool to put a commentary on some vacation footage! :) )
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Regarding Pause:

I've accidentally left my HS2 in REC PAUSE mode on the DVD-R for 3-4 hours and it didn't affect the recording.

I guess the analogy to a car in idle is correct here. It waste electricity, but won't affect the car.

I had the auto off timer turned off instead of 2 or 6 hours.
Thanks for the tip on making a playlist in order to avoid having to archive to DVD-R at the 99 mark.

Also, good to know about the ability to keep it in pause for extended periods. I've written Panasonic about it to see if there's any potential harm to the machine, but I'm still waiting on an answer, moreover, their answers are always entirely lacking. I just wrote to them in a vain hope that someone intelligent might be working that day.

I got my E80 today and I'm busibly recording.


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