copying old VHS tapes to use in Final Cut Express

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by emnorthy, Jul 16, 2010.

  1. emnorthy macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2008
    #1
    I have lots of old family clips on VHS tapes that I would like to move to the computer and use Final Cut Express to edit and rework them.
    Should I copy them to a DVD? Is they a special format I should use?
    Is there a better way to access these clips?
     
  2. -DH macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2006
    Location:
    Nashville Tennessee
    #2
    If you plan to edit the footage, do NOT put it to DVD first. Use a DV camcorder or a DV converter (like this one: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814144214 ) to capture the footage directly into FGCE. Edit, then output for authoring/burning in iDVD.

    If quality is a major concern, use a TBC in-line between the VHS playback device and the analog-to-digital converter ... or here's a converter with a built-in TBC: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=&sku=308864&Q=&is=REG&A=details

    -DH
     
  3. emnorthy thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2008
    #3
    DVD to computer to use in Final Cut Express

    If i have movies and clips on DVD is there a way to up them on the computer to edit them in final cut express.
     
  4. emnorthy thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2008
    #4
    DVD to Computer to use in Final Cut Express

    If i have movies and clips on DVD is there a way to up them on the computer to edit them in final cut express.
     
  5. -DH macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2006
    Location:
    Nashville Tennessee
    #5
    Use MPEG Streamclip (along with the QuickTime MPEG-2 Playback Component from Apple) to convert the DVD's VOB files to match your FCP Sequence settings. Alternatively, you can use DVDxDV.

    -DH
     
  6. OrganMusic macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2008
    Location:
    Chicago
    #6
    I have some old tapes too (8mm etc) and boy how I wish I had a cheap TBC. That one you linked to looked pretty good.
     
  7. siddavis macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2009
    #7
    I you really really want to go cheap, get yourself one of these, or something similar:

    http://www.meritline.com/showproduc...Name=mygica-ezgrabber-2-usb-2-0-video-capture

    There are similar more Mac compatible items like this too. I know, it isn't the greatest, but it does the job is quality isn't of top concern. I just converted about 40 or so VHS tapes using this, and had no trouble loading clips into iMovie for some quick and dirty editing.
     
  8. OrganMusic macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2008
    Location:
    Chicago
    #8
    I have one of the elgato eyetvs which works pretty well, especially if you're just looking to dump stuff straight onto DVDs with very minimal editing. Check out this thread post #12 for directions.

    The only downside to the eyetv and probably the above unit is that it captures straight into MPEG2 which you have to transcode to something like DV to be able to work with it in FCE. And one minor caveat with that is that I found the field dominance sometimes came out wrong in the Eyetv software. Once you know what it looks like wrong (horrible jaggies with anything moving) it's easily corrected with MPEG streamclip.

    So in the end, a DV camcorder with analog passthrough is probably the best way if you're looking to do much with it in FCE.

    Do plan to burn these back to DVD then?
     
  9. plaidhippo macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2007
    #9
    I recently came across this issue as well. My wife just found 15 old hi-8 tapes and the camcorder to go with it. I was wondering what I can do to digitize these tapes. I saw the elgato and others like it, and was wondering if someone can point to the best one for getting content into imovie for some quick editing. I may eventually burn them to DVD if i find some worthwhile footage but want to be able to edit it first.

    Can anyone tell me the main differences between something like an elgato type product and the more expensive ones from newegg that were pointed out? Is there a reason to dump more than a hundred bucks on a simple digitizer? Is the elgato one the best, or are there better competing brands (roxio? others?). Any advice here would be greatly appreciated! :) Hopefully the same advice applies for the original poster and I'm not thread-jacking! :)


    Thanks,
    Ashish
     
  10. dmr727 macrumors G3

    dmr727

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2007
    Location:
    Southern California
    #10
    I have the EyeTV Hybrid to digitize old 8mm tapes. It works well enough, but I wish there was an option to record at a higher bit rate, or even better, use a different software encoder. Elgato tells you that since encoding is done in software, the quality depends on the speed of your machine. That's true to a point, but it caps at roughly 6-8Mbits. In theory that should be more than enough, except the encoder isn't too smart, and you'll commonly see pretty horrible pixellation at times - especially with regions of similar contrast, such as water or snow. There's definitely more processing overhead available for the encoder - my MBP utilizes only about 20% of both cores - so it seems to me that the situation can be improved with better software.

    Anyway, it's good for grandma and grandpa, but nothing more serious than that. I'd do like others have suggested and get a DV camera with an analog passthrough.
     
  11. plaidhippo macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2007
    #11
    I do have a canon zr800 digital video camera, but I don't know if it has an analog pass-through or not? I'm pretty sure it doesn't but I don't have it with me. Does anyone else know? Is this a common feature? If i understand the intent, it is that the camera does the digitization rather than an outboard device like elgato?
     
  12. OrganMusic macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2008
    Location:
    Chicago
    #12
    I actually have the ZR800 myself. It's a good camera, and plays nicely with both FCE and iMove (though not with other firewire devices connected at the same time) but there's no analog passthrough I'm afraid. I think it was a common feature at least on older DV camcorders like some of the lower-numbered Canon ZRxx models.
     
  13. emnorthy thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2008
    #13
    I already converted my VHS tapes to DVD with a Magnavox digital video recorder & video cassette recorder. I downloaded the trial software iMedia converter which let me convert the DVD to load in iMove, but I am unable to get it into Final Cut Express. I will probably buy the iMedia converter ($49) to get the clips in iMove to do some editing, but I was hoping to use FCE. I don't mind spending a little more money, but it seems like each step is costing more time and money.
     
  14. spinnerlys Guest

    spinnerlys

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2008
    Location:
    forlod bygningen
    #14
    The QT MPEG-2 Playback component does only cost 19.99 USD and MPEG Streamclip is free.




    A. Get footage from a video DVD into an editing application

    1. Get the footage from DVD
    2. Transcode the footage to an editing friendly format

    1. Get the footage from DVD - copied and pasted from How to backup/copy/rip video DVDs to your HDD and transcode them to another format.

    As commercial video DVDs use a copy protection scheme called CSS (Content Scramble System), additional software is needed to copy the content of a video DVD to your HDD, which is called "ripping". There are several applications to accomplish this.​


    1.1. MacTheRipper 2.6.6 (free)
    Insert the video DVD into your DVD drive and open MacTheRipper and click the GO button, after which you can select the place you want the video DVD's content saved to.
    As this version of MTR is quite old, it will not read many modern DVDs.

    1.2. RipIt (19.95 USD, trial with 10 rips free)
    Insert the video DVD and press the RIP button.

    1.3. Fairmount (free) - needs VLC 32-bit to decrypt the CSS (thanks to Satori for that information)

    1.4. Mac DVDRipper Pro (9.95 USD)
    Insert the video DVD and select a destination folder, then press the RIP button.


    2. Transcode the footage to an editing friendly format

    As Handbrake does not offer any options to transcode into an editing friendly format (see here for details), one needs to use MPEG Streamclip to have more transcoding options like the .mov container format and a variety of codecs (DV, Apple Intermediate Codec, ProRes, ...), which makes buying (19.99 USD) and installing the QuickTime MPEG-2 Playback Component a necessity, in order to open ripped video DVDs in MPEG Streamclip.

    2.0 Opening a ripped video DVD in MPEG Streamclip

    2.0.1 MPEG Streamclip > File > Open DVD (SHIFT+CMD+O)

    [​IMG]

    2.0.2 Browse to the VIDEO_TS folder of your choice and click Select
    [​IMG]

    2.0.3 Many video DVDs come with several titles (menu, trailers, extras, film, ...), thus make sure you select the correct title, which might involve some trial and error though.
    [​IMG]

    2.0.4 A successful opened video DVD looks like this:
    [​IMG]


    2.1 Transcode the MPEG-2 encoded video for iMovie, Final Cut Express and Final Cut Pro - Apple Intermediate Codec (AIC)

    2.1.1 MPEG Streamclip > File > Export to QuickTime ... (CMD+E)

    [​IMG]

    2.1.2 Export Settings for the Apple Intermediate Codec for PAL DVDs

    [​IMG]

    Choose the AIC for Compression (video) and Uncompressed for Sound.
    If you have an NTSC DVD, select DV-NTSC or Unscaled.​
     

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