How can you capture video from a video game? (And can you do it with a Mac?)

Discussion in 'Games' started by trojan18, Mar 18, 2005.

  1. trojan18 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2005
    #1
    I'm just curious as to how IGN, Gamespot and others compiled their video for their reviews...do they have some type of fancy thing that lets them take the video from the tv screen into their computers? Can someone explain how this works?

    If I was interested in doing this, is there a consumer level product that would let me make an attempt at say, taking footage from a PS2 or Gamecube game and uploading it to my own personal site?

    And i'd need it to work with a Mac, of course. :)
     
  2. Chaszmyr macrumors 601

    Chaszmyr

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2002
    #2
    El Gato's EyeTV products, as well as other TV tuners have composite video inputs, and the ability to record the video. Unfortunately, you can't really play the games on the Mac in order to record the video, because devices like EyeTV have a couple second delay, and you can't play a video game if you don't see anything happen until 2 seconds after it happens. However, if you had some sort of a composite video splitter, you could have it going to both a TV and the Mac at once, so you could play and record at the same time. :cool:

    I just did a quick search, so far the only composite splitter I have found is a 4 way $95.99 one... There are probably cheaper ones to be found though.

    I have never used the EyeTV Wonder USB 2.0 that El Gato now sells, as it is a relatively new product. It seems like it should be good quality, but the low price of $149 indicates otherwise. The EyeTV USB is $169, and pretty low quality. The EyeTV 200 is much better quality (although still not wonderful) and costs $329... So you're looking at a total price of between $200 (if you could find a cheaper splitter) and $430 depending on what hardware you get... Not cheap, but I don't know what your budget is like either.

    El Gato: http://www.elgato.com
    Splitter: http://www.connectworld.net/cgi-bin/iec/ADP5144
     
  3. Palad1 macrumors 6502a

    Palad1

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2004
    Location:
    London, UK
  4. andrewfee macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2004
    #4
    The EyeTV USB2 tuner will do what you want. Because it's using USB2.0 unlike all the other tuners available for Macs, it sends uncompressed video over the USB2 bus, meaning that it is essentially lag-free, and the highest quality possible.

    It's just about the only tuner on the market suitable for games.
     
  5. psycho bob macrumors 6502a

    psycho bob

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2003
    Location:
    Leeds, England
    #5
    If you are serious about this forget external units be they USB 2 or not. If you have a Powermac (G4 or ideally G5) look at the Miglia PCI solutions such as Alchemy TV. Not only are they cheaper (sub £100) but the pictures are better quality and the PCI interface is much faster.
     
  6. andrewfee macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2004
    #6
    I don't see how it will be better quality, as the USB2.0 EyeTV sends uncompressed video, meaning that what goes in is what comes out.

    It really doesn't matter if the PCI bus is faster or not, as USB2.0 is fast enough to send the full quality uncompressed video over, so extra bandwidth won't make a difference.
     
  7. psycho bob macrumors 6502a

    psycho bob

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2003
    Location:
    Leeds, England
    #7
    As far as quality just read some of the reviews that are out there, just because it is uncompressed doesn't mean the quality will be the same. The actual components used make a difference. It is like saying a £200 CD player will give the same quality as one costing £2k just because they both feature 24bit DACs. I haven't used both side by side so I can't comment I can only go by what others have said. As for speed fair enough I'll agree with you that USB 2 should be fast enough but very few units actually match the speed of the interface they use. At the end of the day why would you want to pay to pay upwards of 2x as much for something the same or even slightly inferior. I see there is now the EyeTV Wonder which is a collaboration with ATI but I feel they must have compromised on the units quality to provide the same features as there more expensive models but for half the price.
    At the end of the day though you need a unit such as the ones mentioned in order to do what the original poster asked. Which is best comes down to how much you want to pay and whether you want to use up an external port on your computer or prefer an internal solution.
     
  8. applekid macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2003
    #8
    There's also FireWire bridges. Just import through iMovie. Some people say there's lag, but my Hollywood Dazzle DV Bridge works perfectly without lag (I hear it's pricey still though).
     
  9. Chaszmyr macrumors 601

    Chaszmyr

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2002
    #9
    There's a lot of half-complete information starting to float around in this thread.

    Most notably I should point out that while the EyeTV USB sends uncompressed video to the Mac, the Mac promptly compresses it into MPEG 1, 2, or 4 in order to record.
     
  10. RAS admin macrumors regular

    RAS admin

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2004
    Location:
    Berkshires, Mass.
    #10
    To get good quality results, you need two machines.
    One computer to play the video game on, and the other for capturing.

    1. Connect a scan converter to a VGA port on the computer that the video game is being played on.

    2. Connect an analog / DV converter to the other computer for capturing.

    3. Connect an S-Video cable between them.

    The game playing computer will need to have dual video outputs and you will need to mirror the desktop. Most scan converters have S-Video output and most DV converters have S-Video input. 720X480 should give good quality results and there shouldn't be any lag.
     
  11. markjones05 macrumors 6502a

    markjones05

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2003
    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    #11
    All u need is a video camera and a tv with video out. I use my dv cam id i need found footage for a project to record it off tv and then import it into fcp. The quality is perfect.
     
  12. psycho bob macrumors 6502a

    psycho bob

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2003
    Location:
    Leeds, England
    #12
    Thats a great solution for PC games but we are talking about consoles as I understand it.
     
  13. GFLPraxis macrumors 604

    GFLPraxis

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2004
    #13
  14. RAS admin macrumors regular

    RAS admin

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2004
    Location:
    Berkshires, Mass.
    #14
    oops! I should have read the question more carefully...
     
  15. ZildjianKX macrumors 68000

    ZildjianKX

    Joined:
    May 18, 2003
    #15
    They probably don't use anything that converts the signal to analog because of quality loss, so all DV converters are out.

    They probably have a capture card for a PC that has an (HDTV) component input so it records it as pure digital since all the systems out now have component cables that seperate the video signal by color.

    For the GBA, Nintendo DS, and PSP, they have to have special units with video outs just for recording provided to them by the respective companies.
     
  16. eXan macrumors 601

    eXan

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2005
    Location:
    Russia
    #16
    How do you do this? Want to try it out :D
     
  17. Symtex macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2005
    #17
    That sounds good for someone who has at least 1000$ to invest. That is the cost of a HDTV input capture card.
     
  18. Palad1 macrumors 6502a

    Palad1

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2004
    Location:
    London, UK
    #18
    Oops sorry..

    I was so enamored with World Of Warcraft that I didn't read the console bit and just assumed you wanted to make WoW movies :D
     

Share This Page