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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is how I have convert/archive my "personal" VHS tapes to DVD.


(1) Capture to a PC using a Canopus ADVC-100 Converter.


(2) Check the captured AVI file for quality of audio and video.


(3) If either A/V needs correction, I apply it using Sony's Vegas 4 A/V editor.


(4) Next step is AVI (DV-25) to MPEG-2 encoding using VBR with AVG at 6000 Mbps and either AC3 2/0 audio or LPCM uncompressed audio track, depending on space.


(5) I use DVD-Lab to author the final DVD, and sometimes I add a menu, other times I have no menu.


(6) I use Nero 6 to burn the final DVD.


So far, I have no real complaints. Except, at times I have to be aware of the IRE setting of the original VHS tape, by using a vectorscope to see if its IRE 7.5 or IRE 0. Then I have to recapture with the appropriate correction. In addition, its time consuming to get a high quality MPEG-2 encode.



QUESTIONS:


Should I abandon my ritual and go for a streamlined Panansonic DMR-E80H (or like) Recorder to create DVDs from VHS and other analog sources?


How would the quality compare between the two metods?


What kind of MPEG-2 bitrate does Panny DMR-E80H give?


Thanks,


Gary
 

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I tried with a capture card but didn't have good luck. Here is my process.


Capture to DMR-E80H

Take RAM to PC

Edit Content if necessary

Author and burn with DVD Author


The less re-encoding you can do the better, but if it is working for you, don't break it. Although the stand alone makes it easier to record TV Shows.
 

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I wouldn't. Doesn't Canopus capture directly to mpeg2, without having to do the time-consuming AVI to mpeg2 software conversion on your pc?


Then again, if you edit out commercials in AVI, you would be re-encoding anyway even if you captured in mpeg2.


The reason for the E80 would be timeshifting capability, simple editing with the hard drive, and high speed dubs to DVD-RAM.


The bad? CPRM could get in your way for one. Less compatible disks could be another.


Here's a short feature list of what I can do with the ADS Instant DVD 2.0 USB, and for that matter you can do the same thing on the ADS DVD Express for only $99.


1.) Capture direct to DVD-RW disk in one step, bypassing pc hard drive.

2.) Capture direct to DVD-R disk in one step. (utilizes pc hard drive)

3.) Capture direct to pc hard drive in one step with hardware mpeg2 encoding.

4.) Change brightness, contrast, chroma, saturation and hue during the capture, in hardware.

5.) No CPRM concerns.


Making a dupe with the PC burner is as simple as inserting the source disk, and swapping for the target DVD disk when prompted.


With the included Ulead software bundle:


1.) Create menus with thumbnail chapters and background music.

2.) Convert between NTSC, PAL-SECAM, DV, AVI, WMV, DVD, VR

3.) Frame by frame editing with no gaps.

4.) Fades, transitions, wipes, special effects.


Combined with DirecTiVo, I think I may have the best of all worlds for timeshifting, editing, archiving.


No disrespect to the E80, or any of the standalones...but CPRM will get in your way, whether it's backing up copyrighted material you own, or preventing you from duping your own DVD-R disks. So get the E80 for timeshifting, simple editing, or making a single DVD-R disk in the minimum amount of time.
 

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An external capture device is the greatest time waster ever invented. I can capture with the E80/E100 faster and easier that mucking with a capture card/box.


If all I want it a straight 'dump' I can capture direct to DVD-R (a foolish thing to do, since if you have a bad disc, you have to start over.. HD's are good for that).


If I want simple editing, I can do it on the E80/E100 and never touch the computer.. and either way, the PC is free for other things rather than being a capture device.


If I want to be fancy, I can dump to DVD-RAM or DVD-R is I don't have a RAM compatible drive and go nuts with any editing/authoring software I choose.


I spent 2 years screwing with capture cards/boxes and wasted 1 year 11 months.. the only productive thing I did was the last month realizing what a pain in the tookas it was and bought an E80.


PC Based capture is dinosaur stuff.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Canopus makes PRO and PROSUMER Video hardware and software that is a big step UP above most of the converters out there.

http://www.canopus.us/Index_US.asp


I have the low end ADVC-100 capture box that converts analog to Digital Video (DV-25) which is captured in the same format as what would come across a firewire if you transferred miniDV camcorder video. The only problem is where you would need TBC (Time Base Corrrection) and the more expensive ADVC-300 can handle that or a TBC box. I have no need for that so my ADVC-100 is perfect.


The Canopus converts analog to DV-25 Digital Video that gets written to a file as a Type 2 AVI with two streams, one video at a 5:1 compression based on the DV-25 algorithm and the other stream is audio. Unlike the ADS Instant Copy box, et al, the Canopus is not capable of rendering anything but perfect IN SYNC audio, and this is what is often a big problem with the el cheapo ADS Instant type boxes, audio sync anomolies.


Here are user ratings of various capture hardware. The Canopus ADVC-100 got a 9.5 out of 142 votes.

http://www.dvdrhelp.com/capturecards


Once I have the A/V captured, its a huge file (eg. approx. 12GB for a one hour video). I encode using Cinemacraft's "CCE" SP Encoder. Its capable of up to 9 passes but I use either a 2 or 3 pass VBR and I can control all asects of encoding, like Macroblocks, GOP count, noise reduction, etc. I have full control over the MPEG output.

http://www.cinemacraft.com/eng/ccesp.html


If I need to edit the AVI file before MPEG-2 encoding it, I am dealing with minimally compressed video at the frame level, and no interframe compression, which MPEG does. There is no discernable diference in loss between DV edits for multiple generations. If that is a concern, you can use a lossless codec, like HUFFYUV.


BACK TO MY ORIGINAL QUESTION:


I am curious about the MPEG-2 that the Panasonic E50 employs. Does anyone know if its CBR or VBR? If CBR, at what bitrate? If VBR, at what Min, Avg, and Max bitrate? Are these configurable? How does the Panasonic handle IRE? Is there a switch to match the IRE of the analog source. For example, its not always true that because your in the USA that its IRE 7.5, even though its true most of the time. You need a compensation if not.


I think the Panasonic is a nice multi purpose box, but you have to question all the parameters that go into making a high quality DVD from analog source. So far, I am happy with doing it the "tried and true" long method, but I am always willing to save time as long as I am not compromising quality.


Regards editing MPEG-2, I have not seen anything worth using other than Mediaware's M2-Edit Pro 5.0, and it retails for $1495 USD. Of course, I'm talking about doing more than cutting your MPEG-2 at the I-Frame level, which is more a cutter than a true editor.

http://www.mediaware.com.au/framesets/3m2editpro.html


Thanks for the good information and I hope this technology continues to mature. Yes, it seems to have a grocery list of capabilities, as long as everything you want to do is on that list. IMHO, once you've gone MPEG, you have compromised quality if you want to do post processing. Having said that, it also depends on the value of the video. If its just a capture from timeshifting, then your Audio/Video quality may be on the back burner, compared to what is capable when using software tools on a PC or Mac.


Overall, it looks like a useful device to have in your Home Theater to replace analog Videotape (not D-VHS).


Thanks Guys,


Gary
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Gary Parent

BACK TO MY ORIGINAL QUESTION:


I am curious about the MPEG-2 that the Panasonic E50 employs. Does anyone know if its CBR or VBR? If CBR, at what bitrate? If VBR, at what Min, Avg, and Max bitrate? Are these configurable? How does the Panasonic handle IRE? Is there a switch to match the IRE of the analog source. For example, its not always true that because your in the USA that its IRE 7.5, even though its true most of the time. You need a compensation if not.

- VBR

- XP/1hr 9mb/s (median)

- SP/2hr 5mb/s (median) (I've seen peaks to 9.2 and lows of 3.4 [on a totally black screen].

- IRE on the E80/E100, your choice of 0 or 7.5

Quote:
Regards editing MPEG-2, I have not seen anything worth using other than Mediaware's M2-Edit Pro 5.0, and it retails for $1495 USD. Of course, I'm talking about doing more than cutting your MPEG-2 at the I-Frame level, which is more a cutter than a true editor.
check the Womble Video MPEG Video Wizard (the replacement for MPEG2VCR). Frame accurate editing, effects/inserts and a title editor. Uses an intelligent renderer so only frames around the edits are affected.
 

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THe E80H is great also get a Sima copy master to get rid of macrovision. I used a Sima copy master with Star Wars but did not work Star War's has very good macrovision. Also ATI AIW you can get one at www.pricewatch.com for $33.00 dollars Radeon 32meg Dazzle 2 is also very good www.dazzlegeek.com you can still get this card on ebay. E80H is good if you want to keep closed caption subtitle's. I have not found one thing that does all VHS. Some time's you run into problem's with VHS tape's and some time's it might even be your VCR I have two high end VCR's.
 

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My question is not exactly appropriate for this thread, but considering that there are some obviously intelligent users here, I thought I would take advantage.


1-Seems I remember reading somewhere in this forum that if one is planning on taking an E80 recording to computer HDD for editing, it is better to record onto DVD-RAM than DVD-R. Any truth to this?


2-I am really confused concerning all of the software video editors available. I have considered TMPGEnc, Pinnacle, and Ulead. Please advise on the best (and easiest) one.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by hound
My question is not exactly appropriate for this thread, but considering that there are some obviously intelligent users here, I thought I would take advantage.


1-Seems I remember reading somewhere in this forum that if one is planning on taking an E80 recording to computer HDD for editing, it is better to record onto DVD-RAM than DVD-R. Any truth to this?
-RAM, it's rewritable .... I have two -RAM disk that do nothing else except transfer content from my E-100 to my PC.

Quote:
Originally posted by hound
2-I am really confused concerning all of the software video editors available. I have considered TMPGEnc, Pinnacle, and Ulead. Please advise on the best (and easiest) one.
It's a confusing world :) IMO start with TMPGEnc DVDAuthour, it's an all in one package and works very well with -VR material on -RAM. After you become ofey with DVDAuthor and if you want to move onto doing things beyonds it's capabilities, look at an MPEG Editor and a semi professional authoring package eg DVD-Lab, Adobe Encore et al.


You can download a trial copy of DVDAuthor from:

http://www.pegasys-inc.com/en/product/tda.html
 
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