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Thread: Video cam - Mini DV or HDD option??

  1. #1

    Default Video cam - Mini DV or HDD option??

    Hi everyone,

    I'm looking out for video cameras but I'm a little bit unsure about the options I have available. These are not my opinion but from what I understand from browsing and chatting with friends.

    1) Hard Disk based storage - uses MPEG2 compression so the quality won't be as good, hard to edit the video but has faster transfer rates as it would be like copying a file from a portable hard disk. 1 hour takes about 4GB

    2) mini DV based storage - during transfer, avi file will be created which is supposedly lossless ie without compression so the quality of the video will be kept at its best. It would also mean that it will be easier to edit the video. But transfer times are long as it is a second for second transfer ie: you playback the video and the comp thru the iLink connection captures it. 1 hour takes about 15GB

    Can anyone shed some light on this or correct the statements made in 1 and 2 if needed? I also need some advise and opinions on which format is better. I like the convinience of 1 but just cannot bear the fact that I will be loosing quality and detail if I don't go with 2. Would also be great if you can share some real life, pratical experiences you may have with this.

    Lastly, if you have any user experience with the latest Sony HDV cam, please also let me know if its really worth getting it. I understand that it uses MPEG2 anyway? Is this true?


    I'm not looking for straight to DVD options.

    Cheers,
    Sean.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Video cam - Mini DV or HDD option??

    if you are looking to do video editing, then MiniDV is a better option. the tradeoff is hdd space...1 sec of DV video ~= 3.2meg, 1 hour ~= 13gig. considering that hdd is quite cheap now, this shouldn't be a problem.

    not familiar with HDV but you may find what you want here -> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HDV

  3. #3

    Default Re: Video cam - Mini DV or HDD option??

    Wat about those Mpeg4 digital recorders? Quality better than Mpeg2 recording?

  4. #4

    Default Re: Video cam - Mini DV or HDD option??

    mini dv itself is a compressed format. It's just that it's better quality picture wise than mpeg2. For editing anything significant, mpeg2/4 is a no-no. But if it's just a home thing, then the quality loss is acceptable.

    The practical aspect is this. 13GB is ok. Waiting for one hour for a tape. Sometimes not. Editing footage ~ 30min-4 hours. Don't forget the eventual burning onto a DVD and the data verification ~ 20-30 minute.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Video cam - Mini DV or HDD option??

    afaik the industry still uses miniDV

  6. #6

    Default Re: Video cam - Mini DV or HDD option??

    Thanks for all your replies thus far. I found out that this issue is hotly debated on the internet.
    One of the link is :
    http://www.camcorderinfo.com/bbs/t125431.html

    Seems quite interesting.

    From reading the articles at camcorderinfo, I learnt that if you're recording straight to HDD, it will be in MPEG2 format. To edit it, you have to convert that to either uncompressed form or DV. Then to convert to DVD, there is another compression. So the loss actually happens twice.. interesting..

    As for miniDV, the video recorded out of the cam is already in DV format and there is no need to convert to an uncompressed form for editing. (correct me if I'm wrong). So when finalizing the content to DVD, the loss only happens once.


    The high definition HDV standard uses MPEG2. So to edit and then burn to DVD, loss occurs twice. But the resolution is higher


    Looks like its miniDV for me.. at least for now..

  7. #7

    Default Re: Video cam - Mini DV or HDD option??

    I am a videographer and I also do video training. I have a no obligation 2 hours free training on what is video, format, and, editing, and even give an idea on what it takes to convert photos to vcd/dvd. If there is enough people interest like around 5, I don't mind giving that free talk.
    If anybody is interested, pm me.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Video cam - Mini DV or HDD option??

    PM you already. I am keen in your talk.


    Quote Originally Posted by Cecil
    I am a videographer and I also do video training. I have a no obligation 2 hours free training on what is video, format, and, editing, and even give an idea on what it takes to convert photos to vcd/dvd. If there is enough people interest like around 5, I don't mind giving that free talk.
    If anybody is interested, pm me.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Video cam - Mini DV or HDD option??

    Sure you're welcome - anybody else, pls pm.

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