Power Mac 8500 Video Capture

MaxHeap

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 28, 2012
52
0
Missouri
I got a free Power Mac 8500 and put 8.6 on it and the video capture is horrible (and my expectations of this machine aren't very high). Do I need the exact restore CD's for machine or is that what I should expect for OS 8 and need to go to System 7. If I do need the exact restore discs or software, can anyone point out a good place to get it (other than ebay).

Thanks.
 

skateny

macrumors 6502
Jul 19, 2012
448
0
New York, NY
I got a free Power Mac 8500 and put 8.6 on it and the video capture is horrible (and my expectations of this machine aren't very high). Do I need the exact restore CD's for machine or is that what I should expect for OS 8 and need to go to System 7. If I do need the exact restore discs or software, can anyone point out a good place to get it (other than ebay).

Thanks.
Your rig is going to give you "horrible" video capture, even in comparison to 15-year-old G3s, and no matter which OS you're using.

I don't know of any other resource besides eBay that offers pre-OS X install disks.
 

MaxHeap

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 28, 2012
52
0
Missouri
Your rig is going to give you "horrible" video capture, even in comparison to 15-year-old G3s, and no matter which OS you're using.
I'm not expecting much at all for this old of a machine. Just seems that I'm missing some type of software or install piece for a $4,000 AV machine at the time to produce such bad results.
 

skateny

macrumors 6502
Jul 19, 2012
448
0
New York, NY
Maybe this thread will help.

http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1236418

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I'm not expecting much at all for this old of a machine. Just seems that I'm missing some type of software or install piece for a $4,000 AV machine at the time to produce such bad results.
The cost of the machine has little to do with its capabilities when you're dealing with technology that was current seventeen years ago.
 

Dhack21

macrumors newbie
May 5, 2013
19
0
Phoenix
Have you looked at lowendmac for system disks? I'm sure someone on the swap group might have an old copy for sale.

Sent from my RM-824_nam_att_101 using Board Express
 

Hrududu

macrumors 68020
Jul 25, 2008
2,197
475
Central US
Capturing video on a pre-G3 system can be done without too much trouble. I found the main bottleneck is HDD write speeds. I used BTV Pro software to capture, and write it to a FireWire external drive. Its actually pretty decent video.
 

Lil Chillbil

macrumors 65816
Jan 30, 2012
1,322
95
California
Bare in mind that my powerbook g3 can capture video thru its firewire ports and can then be edited and burned to a dvd. given that its footage from a gl1 and it takes forever to export. All i'm saying is that it doesn't take much power to "Edit"
 

goMac

macrumors 604
Apr 15, 2004
6,915
972
I got a free Power Mac 8500 and put 8.6 on it and the video capture is horrible (and my expectations of this machine aren't very high). Do I need the exact restore CD's for machine or is that what I should expect for OS 8 and need to go to System 7. If I do need the exact restore discs or software, can anyone point out a good place to get it (other than ebay).

Thanks.
Duh. The 8500 has horrible video capture. That's just how it is, it's not a glitch.

Of course back in 1997 that was amazing video capture that was worth $4000! But that was 15 years ago. A $400 video card could barely play Tomb Raider back then too.

But I'm pretty sure the 8500 couldn't even do full SD capture. (Wikipedia verifies that while the card could handle almost SD, the actual hard drive was never capable of capturing at that quality due to the speed, so the quality was toned down.)
 

Lil Chillbil

macrumors 65816
Jan 30, 2012
1,322
95
California
Duh. The 8500 has horrible video capture. That's just how it is, it's not a glitch.

Of course back in 1997 that was amazing video capture that was worth $4000! But that was 15 years ago. A $400 video card could barely play Tomb Raider back then too.

But I'm pretty sure the 8500 couldn't even do full SD capture. (Wikipedia verifies that while the card could handle almost SD, the actual hard drive was never capable of capturing at that quality due to the speed, so the quality was toned down.)
When you compare these machines to the g3 towers you can see why people got so excited. they were the 1st modern processors along with the pentium II
 

Intell

macrumors P6
Jan 24, 2010
18,881
368
Inside
Duh. The 8500 has horrible video capture. That's just how it is, it's not a glitch.

Of course back in 1997 that was amazing video capture that was worth $4000! But that was 15 years ago. A $400 video card could barely play Tomb Raider back then too.

But I'm pretty sure the 8500 couldn't even do full SD capture. (Wikipedia verifies that while the card could handle almost SD, the actual hard drive was never capable of capturing at that quality due to the speed, so the quality was toned down.)
The 8500/9500/8600 didn't have that bad of a video capture. About the quality of a new retail VHS tape played back on a nice quality VCR. With the proper hard drive bus upgrade like a ATA/133 PCI card, they can capture fairly high quality footage. Compared to other computer based video capture systems at the time, it was high end and one of the best. I seem to recall that LucasArts used a 8600 or Power Macintosh G3 (the beige model) to edit Phantom Menace with along with iMovie.
 

goMac

macrumors 604
Apr 15, 2004
6,915
972
I seem to recall that LucasArts used a 8600 or Power Macintosh G3 (the beige model) to edit Phantom Menace with along with iMovie.
I wouldn't bet on an 8600 being used. iMovie came after the 8600, and of course it would be LucasFilm and not LucasArts. :) They also probably used Final Cut Pro or something else professional grade. In no way was iMovie capable of the resolution Phantom Menace was edited at.

Even the Apple capture card on a Power Mac G3 wouldn't be able to capture at Phantom Menace's resolution.
 

Intell

macrumors P6
Jan 24, 2010
18,881
368
Inside
I wouldn't bet on an 8600 being used. iMovie came after the 8600, and of course it would be LucasFilm and not LucasArts. :) They also probably used Final Cut Pro or something else professional grade. In no way was iMovie capable of the resolution Phantom Menace was edited at.

Even the Apple capture card on a Power Mac G3 wouldn't be able to capture at Phantom Menace's resolution.
Watch the special footage on the DVD's, they're using KeyGrip on a Mac. George even goes on to praise modern (circa 1997) day video editing and uses the word KeyGrip. KeyGrip was professional grade at the time, but not yet Apple owned. The 8600 would have been the logical choice for a powerful machine, with it being the latest and greatest. It may also have been the 9600. LucasFilm likely used a PCI based video import card as the built-in ones on the 8600 wouldn't have been able to work to the required quality.
 

goMac

macrumors 604
Apr 15, 2004
6,915
972
Watch the special footage on the DVD's, they're using KeyGrip on a Mac. George even goes on to praise modern (circa 1997) day video editing and uses the word KeyGrip. KeyGrip was professional grade at the time, but not yet Apple owned. The 8600 would have been the logical choice for a powerful machine, with it being the latest and greatest. It may also have been the 9600. LucasFilm likely used a PCI based video import card as the built-in ones on the 8600 wouldn't have been able to work to the required quality.
Right. They didn't use the built in card, and they didn't use iMovie, and instead used what became Final Cut Pro, pretty much like I just said. :)
 

Anonymous Freak

macrumors 603
Dec 12, 2002
5,130
448
Cascadia
I got a free Power Mac 8500 and put 8.6 on it and the video capture is horrible (and my expectations of this machine aren't very high). Do I need the exact restore CD's for machine or is that what I should expect for OS 8 and need to go to System 7. If I do need the exact restore discs or software, can anyone point out a good place to get it (other than ebay).

Thanks.
Define "horrible" please.

Do you mean the quality of the imported video? The interface for video capture?

If you mean the quality - yeah, that was what low-end video capture looked like back then. And $4000 wasn't an insanely expensive computer, either. That was MIDDLE OF THE ROAD. (Okay, bordering on high-end.)

Just take a peek at the ads in the Septembet 1995 issue of Byte Magazine. It was their 20th anniversary issue.
 

Intell

macrumors P6
Jan 24, 2010
18,881
368
Inside
Right. They didn't use the built in card, and they didn't use iMovie, and instead used what became Final Cut Pro, pretty much like I just said. :)
KeyGrip only became the first version of FinalCut. Once Apple bought it, they completely rewrote and reworked it. Suffice to say, it's only the same in spirit.
 

MaxHeap

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 28, 2012
52
0
Missouri
Define "horrible" please.
A lot of stuttering. I was attempting to copy some old VHS tapes with it, which I didn't think would be too taxing. I almost didn't put the price of the machine down, thinking the thread might go on a tangent (and it did). I just wanted to see if there was anything I was missing software or hardware wise (faster hard drive seems to be the consensus). I was comparing the price to the similar 7500, which was only $2700 at the time. My first computer was a brand new TRS 80 III, so I have a frame of reference for older machines and when real AV machines first came out.
 

Intell

macrumors P6
Jan 24, 2010
18,881
368
Inside
Here comes the part where Rabidz says you can overclock it.
You can overclock PowerMac 8500s by about 50Mhz. If there's a G3/G4 upgrade card in it, you can even overclock the RAM by about 5-7Mhz. Having a slight overclock from 50Mhz to 55Mhz makes OS X go a bit faster on mine.
 

chrfr

macrumors G3
Jul 11, 2009
8,369
2,628
A lot of stuttering. I was attempting to copy some old VHS tapes with it, which I didn't think would be too taxing.
At full resolution? Yeah, probably too taxing. The built-in video capture performance in machines from that era isn't good with the stock disks. Back then, video capture required really expensive disk arrays to get the speed needed to capture at full bandwidth. Remember that stock SCSI drives from that era were writing far below 10MB/sec.
 

California

macrumors 68040
Aug 21, 2004
3,766
41
A lot of stuttering. I was attempting to copy some old VHS tapes with it, which I didn't think would be too taxing. I almost didn't put the price of the machine down, thinking the thread might go on a tangent (and it did). I just wanted to see if there was anything I was missing software or hardware wise (faster hard drive seems to be the consensus). I was comparing the price to the similar 7500, which was only $2700 at the time. My first computer was a brand new TRS 80 III, so I have a frame of reference for older machines and when real AV machines first came out.
I have an OS 8 Disc somewhere.
 

goMac

macrumors 604
Apr 15, 2004
6,915
972
A lot of stuttering. I was attempting to copy some old VHS tapes with it, which I didn't think would be too taxing. I almost didn't put the price of the machine down, thinking the thread might go on a tangent (and it did). I just wanted to see if there was anything I was missing software or hardware wise (faster hard drive seems to be the consensus). I was comparing the price to the similar 7500, which was only $2700 at the time. My first computer was a brand new TRS 80 III, so I have a frame of reference for older machines and when real AV machines first came out.
Yeah. It's a combination of things. Video files were bigger back then because there wasn't enough CPU for compression (so likely the video is being recorded in MPEG), and the disks weren't fast enough for large video files (like MPEG.) An hour of SD video in MPEG is going to be a few gigs at least, so you can imagine the drive speeds required to write that.