Copy from VHS to DVD and edit on a Mac?

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by BML, Apr 8, 2007.

  1. BML macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2007
    #1
    I want to copy and edit a collection of family VHS tapes and place them on DVDs and scan a large number of photographs and build slide shows as it will be more convenient to view them on a TV and I have decided to buy a Mac. I know that it is possible to capture the content of the VHS tapes to a Windows based computer by connecting a VCR to a Windows based computer and I assume that it is also possible to do this with a Mac.

    I have also connected a VCR to a DVD recorder through a TV and created a number of DVDs and when I downloaded the content to a computer I found that it was possible to upload the VOB files to the video editing software that I was using.
    Question: Wil a Mac accept those DVDs?

    I have a scanner connected to a windows based computer and I have a great number of photographs that I want to build into slide shows and I want to keep that connected and do not want to buy another scanner for the Mac.
    Question: If I scan the photographs using my Windows based computer connected to a scanner is there a way that I can move the results to a Mac to build slide shows?
     
  2. SSpiro macrumors 6502a

    SSpiro

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  3. Chundles macrumors G4

    Chundles

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    #3
    Get an analogue to digital video converter that plugs into your Mac via Firewire and edit the movies before you put them onto DVD. Once they're converted into MPEG-2 format on the DVD they're a right pain in the arse to edit - the reason straight-to-DVD camcorders are such a hassle is because you can't edit the content once it's been recorded without some major faffing about.

    Why can't you just scan the images using the scanner and the Mac - leave out the PC altogether?
     
  4. Nermal Moderator

    Nermal

    Staff Member

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    #4
    I think that depends on the format. My DVD recorder outputs to DVD-VR instead of DVD-Video, and you can supposedly edit without too much trouble (although I've never done it). The problem I'm having is that Toast seems to have a bug where it will intermittently refuse to read DVD-VR discs :(
     
  5. SSpiro macrumors 6502a

    SSpiro

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    #5
    Something like this?

    http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicat...54-1010&SRCCODE=GOOGLEBASE&CMP=OTC-GOOGLEBASE

    Is there anything out there more affordable?
     
  6. SSpiro macrumors 6502a

    SSpiro

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    #7
  7. epiphany macrumors regular

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    #8
    The purpose of the Dazzle products is to avoid having to use your HDD. You edit on your pc through the Dazzle unit. http://www.pinnaclesys.com/PublicSite/us/Products/Consumer+Products/Dazzle/Family.htm
    It isn't clear to me whether you can copy to your HDD with Dazzle.
    I think you do that (for $10 to $70 more) with their Studio product line.
    http://www.pinnaclesys.com/PublicSite/us/Products/Consumer+Products/Home+Video/Studio+Family/

    As for the initial mac format question, there is no reason you can't move photos and movie files in standard file formats from pc to mac (mpeg, divx, jpeg, etc etc)
     
  8. Chundles macrumors G4

    Chundles

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    Jul 4, 2005
    #9
    It's also Windows-only, somewhat useless for a person investigating the move to a Mac.
     
  9. epiphany macrumors regular

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    Rocklin,CA
    #10
    okay...

    Well, then Thank Goodness we're in the age of Intel Macs! Inexpensive solutions in one OS that can live on the same computer as the better OS...

    And, if you want to go the extra step with the photos: http://www.macconnection.com/ProductDetail?Sku=5653748 However, I'd just as soon paste 'em into Powerpoint and do a pps, or download some freeware that does slideshows.
     
  10. BML thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Apr 8, 2007
    #11
    Chundles.
    Many thanks for that because I certainly didn’t know that once the convertion is into MPEG-2 format on the DVD they are difficult to edit
    The reason that I can't just scan the images using the scanner and the Mac - leaving out the PC altogether is that I’m not sure how complicated it will in that the scanner is connected to my Mesh computer now and I’m not sure if I can just disconnect it from the Mesh and connect it to the new Mac when I buy it.

    SSpiro.
    I wrote, "Are you talking about the Canopus ADVC300 Bi-directional Analog / Digital Video Converter at $479.99 which by the way is nearly twice the price in good old rip off Britain? Surely there must be something less expensive?" I then read what Epiphamy wrote.

    Epiphany sugests Pinnacle's Dazzle at a more respectable $46.99 and at £39.00 it’s also nearly twice the cost than America really do wonder how manufacturers manage to get away with swindling British consumers but at least the Dazzle is affordable.
    You also say that there is no reason you can't move photos and movie files in standard file formats from pc to Mac (mpeg, divx, jpeg suggesting going the extra step with the photos: http://www.macconnection.com/ProductDetail?Sku=5653748 I cant find a price on the Web in Britain but I will keep looking. I’m not sure that I want to start into Powerpoint because its going to take me long enough learning how to use the new Mac when I buy it but thanks all of you for your advice.
     
  11. -DH macrumors 65816

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    Nashville Tennessee
    #12
    As others have already stated, you're best route would be to digitize (capture) the footage directly to your computer (regardless of what type of computer), then edit as needed and save the DVD creation process as the last step. DVD-Video uses highly compressed MPEG-2 format which really wasn't designed for editing; it was designed as a delivery format only. But technology being what it is, software vendors have come up with ways to edit it ... just not very efficient ways.

    For getting the analog VHS footage into your system, you'll need an analog-to-digital converter. But the best thing you can do for it (quality wise) is to also run the footage through a Time Base Corrector (TBC). That alone will help stabilize the signal keeping quality as high as possible. The Canopus ADVC-300 converter has a built-in TBC which is the main reason it costs more than most other models. Of course, you don't have to use a model with a TBC ... you can use a DV camcorder or VTR to do the analog-to-digital conversion. Just be aware that without a TBC in the signal path, you'll suffer more signal degradation than with one.

    It would be best to digitize (capture) the footage to whichever platform (Mac or Windows) that you intend to use for editing; video codecs may vary slightly between Windows and Mac so getting it on the right system in the first place will save some conversion time.

    As for the photos, you should be able to scan them on your Windows system then transfer them to a Mac without issue. I do that all the time (both ways), transferring images over my network and haven't run in to a problem yet. I would highly recommend that you scan and save the images in an uncompressed format such as TIFF. JPEG is a lossy format that gets recompressed every time you save it and artifacts will start to show with the first save.

    Once you have all the images and footage on your editing system, you can edit however you like. After you've finished the edit, THEN is the time for encoding and authoring the DVD ... that's normally the last step in the process.

    -DH
     
  12. SSpiro macrumors 6502a

    SSpiro

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    #13
    I have a DV cam... so I can just hook that up via firewire, and digitize that way?
     
  13. Chundles macrumors G4

    Chundles

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    #14
    Yep, easy as pie with iMovie. Works a treat.
     
  14. miloblithe macrumors 68020

    miloblithe

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    #15
    (hopefully this is helpful not hijacking...) How do you get it to not look like crap after compression though? I've tried a number of compression formats(.avi, MPEG-4, .mov), and they all look pretty terrible even on the highest quality settings (or what I thought were the highest, at least). Digitizing isn't much use if a movie takes up like 30GB of space.
     
  15. aricher macrumors 68020

    aricher

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    Chi-il
    #16
    That Canopus converter (Canopus ADVC300 Bi-directional Analog / Digital Video Converter) is amazing. It stabilizes old video and allows you to lock the audio so the sound doesn't drift out of sync. It's expensive but worth it IMHO. They have a cheaper version as well (ADVC100) that's also very good.
     
  16. epiphany macrumors regular

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    Jan 8, 2004
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    Rocklin,CA
    #17
    iLife

    I think a lot of what you are trying to do can be done with the iLife suite that will come with your new Mac. You get iDVD, iMovie HD, and iPhoto, and much can be handled in those programs once you Firewire over.
     
  17. mperkins37 macrumors 6502a

    mperkins37

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    Jan 17, 2007
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    #18
    Dude! Get a Formac Studio!

    I have had a Formac Studio Firewire Interface for my mac for three or four years & It works great for that stuff. RCA, S-videoin & Out And firewire connectivity. Press play on vhs, record over to hd with formac software or I-Movie , Premiere.
    BTW. I just finished a 2-2/3 year Genaeology Project, where I scanned 1425 Photos from the late 1800's & Early 1900's to present, retouched, & repaired them, put them in frames, captioned a bunch, set them to Music (& Recorded 3 origonals with my Taylor 12 String)in Soundtrack Pro, Added voiceover stories.Made movement like Ken Burns movie, setup 3D animated tree intros For each section, 3 DVD's of Movies & 3 DVD's of Printable photos @ 5x7
    Fully restored & Color Corrected.
    Did it All With a 4 Year Old I-MAC G4. (Although I had to buy 3 External FW Drives.
    BTW Buy A good QUALITY scanner, with a decent DMAX (or Maximum Density)! I Reccommend the epson's Mine is three years old 2450 Photo.
    The newer version of it has a bettter d-max & Still runs about 450.00 - 500.00, But it also does Negatives, wich comes in handy.

    In short, Macs rule for this stuff, Get A Formac Studio, Go for a Quality Scanner & Throw It on the MAC!, the results will be noticeable in Photoshop. Also Scan for Largest output anticipated, But that's another thread.

    Mike Perkins,
    Galactic Graphic Design
    Phoenix, Az
    mperkins37@cox.net
     
  18. killmoms macrumors 68040

    killmoms

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    #19
    Well, since most DV footage is interlaced, you need to encode with a codec that has an interlaced mode, and doing 2-pass helps. If both of those things are supported, you can get a very decent looking result without a whole lot of bitrate expenditure.
     
  19. dextertangocci macrumors 68000

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    Apr 2, 2006
    #20
    I have a panasonic dv camcorder, but how do I do it? The camera doesn't have composite inputs, only S video, and my video machine only has composite, not S video:confused:
     
  20. PostShawn macrumors newbie

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    Apr 4, 2007
    #21
    Does your camera have a Firewire port? Most DV cameras should. That should just connect right up to the mac. You might have to play with some imput settings in whatever program you are using (iMovie, FCP, whatever) but it should work just fine.
     
  21. miloblithe macrumors 68020

    miloblithe

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    #22
    Is the footage interlaced if I imported it through a DV camcorder from a VCR?
     
  22. diamond3 macrumors 6502a

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    Oct 6, 2005
    #23
    Ok, here is my whole guide to getting VHS, MiniDV, or whatever onto a DVD. I will do it from VHS.

    Analog to Digital: Many new MiniDV cameras have some sort of firewire port on them to send it to the computer. I happen to have a sony that has a dock with it. I connect the dock via firewire to the firewire port on the mac. Now, your camcorder should have a place to input video. It should also come with some sort of connection for your camera that connects with RCA. Place the special input into your camera and the rca side into your VCR video output. Many video camcorders you can set up to pass the video through to a Digital source to the computer. Its just a matter of figuring out if your camcorder allows it and you can set it up.

    The other way is with a input box that connects to the computer using firewire. This should be straight forward. I haven't used one of them before since I can do everything on my camcorder.

    Importing:
    Now, if you have a Mac with iLife: Open iMovie, create a new project. Then you just switch to the import settings and if you have everything setup in the previous part, iMovie should just recognize that there is a device connected. Put the Tape in the VCR and hit the play button. Then in iMovie hit the import button. It will take as long as your video is to import it into DV format in iMovie. The size of the project will depend on how long the video is. 1 hour is about 13gb.

    Editing:
    So one you have this all done and imported, just drag your clips down into the timeline. Select them all and change the volume to 150%. Once I have all the clips in the timeline, go through and watch it. At the beginning point where you don't want the sequence followed, hit [apple + T] to split the clip at that point. Hit play and at the frame where you decide to keep everything after hit [apple + T] Now, this will create a clip in between those two splits that contains the video footage that you don't want. So, just drag that clip into the iMovie trash and go through your whole movie doing this. Once you take out all the footage you dont want, you can go through and add titles or whatever. Save it often. Once you have the movie edited and finished, click the Share -->iDVD. This will open iDVD and put the movie into it automatically. You can then select the menu theme or whatever you want. Also, if you put chapter markers in your movie in iMovie, this will load a scene selection menu in iDVD. Its all really simple, but can take some time. You can have up to 2 hours of video on one dvd.

    Burning:
    Once everything is finished up and you preview the dvd in iDVD (it plays it like it would show up on your tv with the menu and a remote), save it. Now, make sure all your settings are correct and that its set for best quality (especially if its over an hour long). Now, I never click the burn button in the right hand corner of iDVD, I do a "Save As Disc Image." This is the best way to burn it. iDVD will go through and create a file that will fit on a dvd to the location of your choice. After it encodes it (takes some time depending on the computer), open up "Disc Utility" and click on the image file iDVD just create and then put a blank dvd in the computer and make sure the image is selected in disc utiltiy and hit burn. This won't take to much time to burn it (depending on the speed of the burner). Since you have a disc image, you can create another one in the amount of time it took you to burn the second one. Its always a good idea to create two of your personal video so you have a backup in case the other one gets scratched.

    So there you have it. If you are efficient and have a decent mac, you can get one done a day regardless of the computer. If your computer is somewhat slow (say a ~1ghz ppc), do the encoding to a disc image over night and then just burn the dvd in the morning. Its not a difficult process. Once you get a few done, the rest won't be too hard. Learn the keyboard shortcuts for iMovie. It saves you time and is easier.
     
  23. killmoms macrumors 68040

    killmoms

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    #24
    Yes, VHS is interlaced.
     
  24. ChrisA macrumors G4

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    Jan 5, 2006
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    Redondo Beach, California
    #25
    [The very best way is to get a mini DV camera with a "pass through" feature. Most camera have this. Connect the VHS to the DV camera and the DV camera (via firewire) to the Mac. The quality of the capture will be as good as the VHS tape. Now you have some DC files on your hard disk. They take 12GB per hour of video. Edit the DV using iMovie or Final Cut then burn to DVD.

    You may be able to import the DVD like you said but you will have to transcode the MPEG-2 video files to DV before you can edit. The quality will not be quite as good going this route. Much better to convert straight to DV. Cameras, even cheap camera make very good analog to digital converters

    One more thing. The camera can record to tape while passing the video on. This is good because the tape acts as a backup.

    About your scaner: It may be supported on the Mac. First thing to try is simply to plug it in and use "Image Cature" and see if it works. Second thing is to look for a Mac driver on the manufacturer's web site.

    If you can't move it to the Mac, yes you can transfor the images. Simply connect the PC and the Mac to the same Eithernet net work and share a folder on one machine. If you can't make a network then use a USB disk drive. Both machine can access FAT format drives. So first have the PC format it as "FAT".
     

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