*CHEAPEST* route from VCR to Computer?

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by Oirectine, May 1, 2006.

  1. Oirectine macrumors regular

    Oirectine

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2003
    Location:
    Tokyo, Japan
    #1
    Hi guys! Got a question for ya!

    So my friends and I like to play competitive fighting video games (Street Fighter, etc) on PS2, and I'd like to start recording our matches. We can put a VCR between the Playstation and the TV to get the sound and video onto tape.

    My question is: What is the absolute cheapest hardware/software I could hook up between the VCR and my Mac (dual core Intel Mini) to transfer the taped recordings to digital files?

    Someone in another thread mentioned the ADVC110 (http://www.canopus.com/products/ADVC110/index.php), but at over 200 USD, it's way out of my price range.

    So I guess the only two things I'll need are 1) an analog to digital video converter with USB 2 or Firewire output, and 2) software for it that'll run on OS X. Anyone have any experience with some low-end stuff like that? This looks perfect, but of course the software is Windows only :(
     
  2. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2002
    Location:
    キャンプスワ&#
    #2
    It all depends on the quality that you want. FW will be much better than USB due to the way the interfaces interact with the CPU. Additionally, you will want an external converter that does not rely on the CPU to complete the conversions.

    eBay may be your friend to find a used one. Or an owner who wants to upgrade.

    Another option, if you have a friend with a FW equiped Camcorder with VHS input, would be to use it for your converter.

    Bottom line, I think that you might be disappointed with the Dazzle system you mention.
     
  3. After G macrumors 68000

    After G

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2003
    Location:
    California
    #3
    Find someone with a Firewire camcorder that allows analog inputs. That's the cheapest way to go.

    Alternatively, you could get an EyeTV EZ and record straight from your console to your Mac. Ideally you'd want hardware encoding (EyeTV 250), but hardware encoding usually means lag (bad for games) and if saving money is really important, I think a dual-processor Intel could handle the load.

    I haven't tried personally so I am not sure. I do have an Intel mini and I haven't done anything processor intensive yet so I am still gauging its performance.
     
  4. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #4
    If you can't find a friend to borrow one from or want to own, look for a broken (lens, display, tape transport, things that wouldn't affect the analog inputs -> digital outputs) miniDV camcorder on eBay, I've seen a few that would work fine for this purpose go for much less than US$100.

    B
     
  5. Dave00 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2003
    Location:
    Pittsburgh
    #5
    Kind of a roundabout solution, but you might want to use one of the commercial VHS->DVD services (I think snapfish has one). Depending on just how many videos you wanted to convert, this might be an option.

    dave
     
  6. Texas04 macrumors 6502a

    Texas04

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2005
    Location:
    Texas
    #6
    Yes try buying a DVD recorder thats less than $100. Record your match on dvd than rip it useing handbrake to your mac. Import it to iMovie and your done. (could get u buying alotta DVD's though, just record multiple matches and wait to finalize)
     
  7. Oirectine thread starter macrumors regular

    Oirectine

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2003
    Location:
    Tokyo, Japan
    #7
    Quality is not an issue, as these vids are going to be compressed and put on the web.

    The idea of buying a broken firewire camcorder that allows analog inputs is tempting. I also found a used DVD recorder for under 100 dollars on eBay. "Burn DVD, rip with Handbrake" sounds really really simple, too.

    I did find an analog to digital converter that I can get for about 50 bucks, but it doesn't come with software for the Mac. Does anyone know what kind of software I'd need to take advantage of a USB analog>digital converter?
     
  8. Dont Hurt Me macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2002
    Location:
    Yahooville S.C.
    #8
    A Hollywood dv bridge would do this job im pretty sure.
     
  9. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #9
    You'd need an appropriate driver. As I understand it iMovie already supports some USB MPEG-4 cameras, so if it's compatible with those you might not need anything. (doubtful).

    You've already said that quality doesn't matter so much, so you might be OK with the DVD recorder -> Handbrake route, but if you were afer quality that seems like a bad route since it would require far too many compression/decompression steps.

    B
     

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