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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've re-read all the old threads and now I'm even more confused.


Can the VRO files be edited and then left as VRO on the DVD-RAM? Is this what people have been able to do with Ulead DVD Workshop 1.2+ or MPEG2VCR?


Is there a way to get the VRO in programs like Premier or Media Studio? Directly or converted to some other form? [I think directly=no, converted=yes, but I don't understand how]


Forgive my ignorance on the subject in general...I just want to find a way to take recordings from my HS2, add nifty titles/transitions/chapters/etc using my PC, and then write it all out to a compliant DVD-R (either directly from the PC or back on the HS2).
 

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Pinnacle's Studio 8 works as an edit suite with mpeg2 as well as DV. Panasonic are including it with some of their DVD RAM PC packages. Studio 8 also includes Title Deko which is supposed to be a decent titling package. I seem to remember that the HS2 saves it's mpeg2 files as something other than a vro but changing the extension to vro on a PC should then allow direct editing in Studio 8. I suppose then that you may have to change it back to it's original extension before the HS2 will play the edited result.

FWIW, I don't have much respect at all for Pinnacle products from what I have seen on the internet etc but at least Studio 8 is cheap and it might just do what you want - pls let us know as this is something I would like to persue in a month or two, once the 'sticker shock' of the HS2 has worn off!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The HS2 does save to DVD-RAM as VRO. Anyone know if Studio 8 will really take the HS2 VRO with the AC3 audio intact? I have Studio 7 already and I know it doesn't. An upgrade would be cheap, but only if it would work. :)
 

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Studio 8 does not handle AC3 audio. MPEG2 is not the ideal format for editing since it is difficult to do frame accurate editing (since some of the video frames are "inferred" from other frames>that's how it achieves its superior compression capability) and if you do any significant editing, most editors will require the whole video to be re-encoded which sort of defeats the purpose of real-time mpeg2 encoding to DVD-RAM.


If you want to do something more sophisticated than rough cuts editing (e.g., fancy transitions and titles), its better to do the editing while the video is in an avi format such as DV or MJPEG and then convert or dub the edited video to mpeg2 using a software encoder (e.g., TMPGenc) or a hardware encoder (e.g., HS2 etc...).


Discussion of the use of DVD Workshop was meant to show how this DVD "authoring" (as opposed to editing) application can be used to customize menus and chapter stops on Panasonic vros when converting to DVD-R vice using the stock menus and fixed five minute chapter stops available on the HS2/E30.


Bottom line is that you need to separate video editing from DVD authoring as these are two separate tasks that ideally should occur at a different points in the whole DVD-R production sequence (e.g., Capture source video to PC as avi>edit video>output to tape or directly to HS2 for real time burning to HDD or DVD-RAM or alternatively software encode to mpeg2>take vro (from DVD-RAM) or mpeg2 file and author (add chapters and menus) to DVD-R using Workshop or equivalent authoring app).


Hope this helps,

Vic
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Vic,

Thank you for the informative reply. I think I'm now beginning to understand why this is so difficult and why I can't easily do what I want.


If I "capture" from VHS to DVD-RAM on the HS2, I need to convert the MPEG-2 (VRO) to something less compressed (AVI) in order to do fancy editing. I would then have to put it back into MPEG-2 (with TMPGenc ?) and then author with something like Workshop. Right?


As a second option, if I just want to make better menus and chapter points than the HS2 can do, I can take the VRO into Workshop and then output to DVD-R.


Any suggestions on what to use for the MPEG-2 to AVI conversion? Or the opposite conversion?
 

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Quote:
If I "capture" from VHS to DVD-RAM on the HS2, I need to convert the MPEG-2 (VRO) to something less compressed (AVI) in order to do fancy editing. I would then have to put it back into MPEG-2 (with TMPGenc ?) and then author with something like Workshop. Right?
That's right. You apparently have Studio 7, can you capture analog video or DV to your computer? If you can, then you should capture your VHS tapes directly to your PC as DV or MJPEG for editing then encode your edited projects to DVD compliant mpeg2 directly from the Studio 7 timeline or use Studio 7 to create an intermediate (DV) avi that can be converted to DVD compliant mpeg2 using TMPGenc. The problem with the latter approach is that you have to create the intermediate avi which takes time and if your program is greater than 20 minutes (assuming DV format), then Studio 7 cannot output create the avi since it will exceed 4GB (unless you are using WinXP/NT and NTFS vice FAT 32 then there is no 4GB file limit).

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As a second option, if I just want to make better menus and chapter points than the HS2 can do, I can take the VRO into Workshop and then output to DVD-R.
That's correct.


Quote:
Any suggestions on what to use for the MPEG-2 to AVI conversion?
Sorry, I don't know any MPE2 to avi converters, off hand, that can handle an AC3 elementary stream. Panasonic's $13 MovieAlbum software does a great job at editing vros on a PC as well as exporting the vros as an mpeg2 file with mp2 audio (vice ac3) which can be handled by most applications, including studio 7 (I think) you can then convert to avi from there. The problem is that capturing to hs2 with on-the-fly conversion to mpeg2 then transcoding to DV or MJPEG avi (both compressed) then transcoding back to mpeg2 is a very lossy process and will likely degrade your video each step of the way such that your final product may not have very good quality. Once the video has been compressed to mpeg2 format, you should really attempt to avoid to the extent practical any further re-encoding, transcoding, or format conversions or you are really risking big time digital artifacts (noise) and picture quality degradation.


Vic
 

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Has anyone tried the softarch.com software called GreatVideo Mac? They also make a PC version. It is supposed to convert vro files from the Panasonic and some cameras that use DVD-RAM discs for media to formats that can be used on computers for editing. I called Software Architects about two weeks ago, and they told me:


1- that the conversion only goes one way. One cannot convert back to vro to the DVD-RAM for use in the HS2 after editing.


2- they will be releasing a newer version in about 2-3 weeks. Cost is $99.00.


I would imagine that even if one could do the conversion back to vro/DVD-RAM that quality would suffer. And I do not know about sound formats. But I may be able to go from my Mac to HS2 via Firewire. When the new version becomes available I may try it myself, unless someone else has had some bad experience to share.
 
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