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Old Feb 7, 2013, 05:18 PM   #1
CyrusOz
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Join Date: Mar 2009
Transfer from Camera to iMovie

I haven't had to do any video transfer or editing on Imac before so I'm a little lost. I recently videoed a friends seminar (poor lighting and audio but acceptable) and she has asked me to put it on DVD for her.

I transferred it to Imovie via the standard cable that came with the camera which looks like this onehttp://www.ylmart.com/jvc-everio-gz-hm550-cable.html. The quality isn't as good as I had hoped for, despite the fact that it was on the highest qulity recording setting and it's supposed to be HD. The video is large in size and hen I view it, it's pretty much a full imac screen but the resolution and grain appearances is poor. The video camera is a JVC everio HDD gz-hm550 and it just dawned on me that perhaps there was another cable I could use to transfer the video at a higher quality.... perhaps this one http://www.ylmart.com/mini-hdmi-to-hdmi-cable.html but i can't really tell if my Imac has that kind of cable slot

Can anybody please tell me if i'm stuck with the quality of the video I have or if there is another way to transfer it at a higher quality?

Any assistance is greatly appreciated.

CyrusOz
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Old Feb 8, 2013, 07:29 AM   #2
daybreak
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What version of iMovie are you using???????? and what is the quality of your video in your camcorder.
Also what input sockets do you have with your iMac. Looking from your picture of the cables you could be using the wrong ones.
Can you be a bit more precise with your information
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Old Feb 8, 2013, 07:29 AM   #3
WestSt
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Have you tried pulling the files directly from the camera, and viewing them in the original format (Quicktime Player, VLC)?

If it looks the same, then it has nothing to do with iMovie exporting to AIC format, or real time play back not showing the best quality. With the lighting and surroundings you describe, using a consumer grade camera, I'll bet the quality is the same. HD or not has nothing to do with it - even the best cameras need good light to hit the lens, to get the best quality video.
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Old Feb 8, 2013, 09:46 AM   #4
Stixx31
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A Handycam like that records in AVCHD, and while it records a full 1920x1080 picture, most of the image is what's known as "pixel shifted," it is not full HD but brought up to that resolution, mainly for marketing purposes. That USB cable you used is the correct cable, however, iMovie cannot take those native files, so they need to be converted with something like compressor or clipwrap
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Old Feb 8, 2013, 03:45 PM   #5
CyrusOz
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Thats all great information people, thanks very much for your input and advice.

I just tried viewing them directly from the camera into VLC player and although it's not great FULL HD it's still much better than the quality I'm seeing when playing them through imovie so it would appear it's Imovie downgrading the quality rather than a transfer issue. Definitely the lighting and camera type have played a significant role in the quality level but i need to maintain the best quality I have.

I do actually like using Imovie because it's easy and produces a semi-professional product with the transitions etc ... ie it looks pretty with very little effort from me.

Does this mean that I have to use another video editing program to maintain the highest quality or can I save the file directly from my camera into a format to import into imovie without losing quality?

Sorry to ask such dumbass questions but I really need your help. I guess I need things spelled out to me so I don't screw up.

Thanks again people
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Old Feb 8, 2013, 05:43 PM   #6
daybreak
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WHAT version of iMovie are you using?.
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Old Feb 8, 2013, 06:29 PM   #7
WestSt
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daybreak View Post
WHAT version of iMovie are you using?.
Answering this will enable people in here to help you out much better!

In the mean time, her is a great(!) resource: http://www.kenstone.net/fcp_homepage/imovie_09_stone.html

When iMovie imports, it encodes your files to AIC (Apple Intermediate Codec). The built in compressor in iMovie may not be the best for the job. I've not used iMovie a lot, but tried it out as an import tool, with the intention of using the video in FCP projects. What I discovered, though, was that MPEG Streamclip does a much better job exporting files to AIC. MPEG Streamclip is free, but unless you have FCP or the latest OSX, you have to get a Mpeg2 component from Apple. All the info you need is available at http://www.squared5.com/. Strongly recommended!
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