Captured file size - HDV vs AVCHD


macrumors 6502
Original poster
Aug 27, 2008
Hi. Noob Q here.
Im wanting to get into a bit of digital video. I cant decide between the Canon HV40 or the HFS11.

I understand that when capturing AVCHD (HFS11), it takes up a huge amount of disk space... Is it the same (or less?) for HDV (HV40)?

Can anyone break it down to some figures? GB per hour sorta thing..



Sep 7, 2008
forlod bygningen
Mostly it doesn't matter if its' AVCHD or HDV, as they are both highly compressed formats and use the MPEG-4 and MPEG-2 (HDV) codec, which is not suitable for editing.

It depends on the software you're going to use to edit all the clips together.
Final Cut Pro will use ProRes, which takes 1GB/min of space, Avid will use DNxHD which will amount to the same.
I don't know about iMovie or FCE but I guess they will also be around the same space eating habits.


macrumors 6502a
Mar 6, 2007
In iMovie and Final Cut Express, HDV and AVCHD will be transcoded to Apple Intermediate Codec and take up between 25 and 50GB/hour.

With Final Cut Pro you have the option of using other codecs, and you can also edit HDV as HDV, which is between 9 and 12GB/hour.

To edit AVCHD as AVCHD you need Adobe Premiere or something on Windows.


macrumors 6502
Original poster
Aug 27, 2008
Ah.. So confusing.
I guess I may just use iMovie for now, and see how I go.. Eventually move up to Express or maybe Pro

Im only on an iMac too, so Pro would probably be lost on me as I dont think my 2.66GHz Core 2, 4GB DDR3 would handle the heavy Final Cut Pro features and add ons.


macrumors 65816
Jan 26, 2008
for what it's worth, I editted on an iMac 2ghz intel w/ 4 gigs ram and a few scratch discs and it was decent. If you can piece together a few scratch discs of decent size, using the apple intermediate codec cuts down on render times but uses about 36gigs per hour. I said the hell with that and just used the HDV codec with not much problems except that render times were a bit tedious.
I am using FCP 6.0.4 and a HV30.

I say go with the HV40, its amazing.

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