400 MiniDV Tapes Onto DVD

By LindbergMTL · 46 replies
Jul 24, 2009
  1. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,973   +2,527

    OK, first we're discussing which video codec to use , now we're burning "data" discs.

    If each Tape is different, then each tape has to be encoded separately. You're talking about how the discs have to be in the same format for all the recipients. So, what are they going to do encode the files themselves?

    First and foremost, you're trying to do the work of a video production house on an outdated laptop. Why would you take on this project in the first place?

    Will more memory help? To a degree. a very small degree. Memory doesn't create more CPU clock cycles, never has, never will. Clock cycles transcode video. Memory just handles the info as it's being written to the drive.

    The is an age old fantasy here at TS, "I want to install more memory so I can run 22 programs, play WOW, encode video, and burn DVDs while I surf the net"! The answer's always the same, "um, good luck with that"!
  2. Ph30nIX

    Ph30nIX TS Rookie Posts: 243

    Seriously Cranky, there is no need to be so rude.

    Lindberg: Please excuse Cranky's arrogance, some people fail to recognize what is going on. I can see you need help, so I am willing to offer any help I can. This is what Techspot is all about.

    If they want it in AVI format specifically, you should be burning it as a DATA DISC. I'm guessing you've captured it as an AVI file, and are then re-encoding it as a DVD (E.g. mpeg2), hence the reason it takes so long to encode.

    You have certainly taken on a big job, but no doubt you can get through it with a little persistence. It would definitely help if you had access to 2 machines, perhaps one to take care of the burning while one is capturing.

    If they want it in AVI, I'd say just use the DivX codec, it is so common these days anyway, anyone who doesn't have it should probably get it. an Hours worth of footage should come down to 500mb or so, but you could easily use less compression.

    You have an entire dvds worth, 4.35Gb to work with, so dont worry about the compression. You basically want to find a point where the footage is streamed and not compressed so it fits onto the single dvd.
  3. strategic

    strategic TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,020

    Getting back into this now... Another option - [1] hour 'avi' will fit on a CD, no DVD required. That in itself will make compatibility wide open, and make the process much faster. A CD will always burn quicker than a DVD. Remember a typical 2 hour movie is only 700-800MB in AVI format, which means your MiniDV's are probably 400-450MB?...:)
  4. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,973   +2,527

    Well thank god you're here to rescue Lindberg from captaincranky. I can see that you're a person of great ideals.

    If you import the files to disc, then directly burn them to disc as data, the burn will take about 6 minutes, which I said long ago. If they need to be transcoded, with an aging laptop, then it will take an nour and a half.

    Mr Lindberg wants the filesto be "Avi", and has already researched the options for that to occur.

    And Ph30nIX, there is no need to excuse me or make excuses for me. Threads can go on for pages here. One that specifically springs to mind, was about some nitwit that wanted if there was a way to reuse thermal paste so he didn't have to buy it. I think I remember being rude to him also. I also recollect 3 or so pages for somebody who had 40 whole dollars to spend on a PSU. While the thread went on, the best PSU for the money went off sale! (Antec EA-380 @39.95 w $10.00 MIR)Whoops, I was rude to that poster also!

    As to the subject of help, I pretty sure you don't know the difference between helping somebody, and being forced to pander to them. We're not a business in here the forums, so the consumer doesn't always have to be right. Have a nice day.

    Oh and BTW, Lindberg, an increase in memory might at least help somewhat with the dropped frames issue. I think something gets lost in the translation between, the page file and RAM. If the machine can perform an operation in RAM alone, it stands a wee bit better chance of success.
  5. LindbergMTL

    LindbergMTL TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 18

    Hi Cranky and easy going folks, all of your input is helpful and ... entertaining almost...

    Here is an update. uh... quick update:

    Doing the Mpeg transfers don't cause any major problems. The files are relatively small, and light, so all is well.

    But AVI files...

    Capturing one hour worth of AVI from a minidv player, and burning the resulting 13 GB of AVI onto a DVD as DATA is still a problem.

    Am I doing something wrong if I am getting 13 GB files? Strategic, you say that the files should only be around 500 mb?

    I bought some Memorex (printable) DVD to run some tests. For starters, they only take about 4 GB of data. I need to put 13!

    Do you know if I can put 13 GB of data (AVI files) onto a DVD?

    Also, I need to run the capture program concurrently doing the burning process, with 400 DVD to burn, I cannot wait that the capture is finished to start burning.

    Any input as to increasing my RAM or other strategies to implement my plan is welcome.

    thanks again
  6. strategic

    strategic TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,020

    Ok, maybe it's just me, but as I know it, a typical 2 hour "AVI" video is approx. 700-800MB.:confused:
    Your files you say is 1 hour... Maybe I'm missing something between formats? :confused: Something about MiniDV I'm not aware of? :confused: Hopefully, for you, if I'm right, (which I know I am, :cool:unless again, something I don't understand about the MiniDV), you can even copy a 2 hour movie in AVI format on a CD, and you can easily burn a CD at 30X speed vs DVD at what? 10X?:chef: Digital Video is digital video, unless of course it's hi-def.
  7. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    Your probably using the wrong compression, it should cut down a lot smaller.
    But who am I kidding, I fail at this all the time.
  8. strategic

    strategic TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,020

    Oh yeah, I almost forgot... where / why the 13GB? :rolleyes: It can't be correct, because if it is, you'll need blu-ray and probably 2 computers doing the work to get it done in a reasonable amount of time.
  9. LindbergMTL

    LindbergMTL TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 18

    Maybe there is a confusion betweeen avi and dv-avi?
  10. strategic

    strategic TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,020

    Sorry, this post is getting rather large and I have become slightly confused, *ahem*... slightly.
    MiniDV format is not apparently AVI, and yes, you are pretty much accurate on the 13GB size.
    BUT!!! When you convert it to AVI, depending on the "quality", you may still be able to fit it on a CD, if so, it will be a huge bonus for you, since you'll save a horrendous amount of time as I mentioned in my previous posts. MiniDV is uncompressed, and you most likely have 'type 2',

    SO that's the only thing you'll need to confirm is the quality, and that will answer CD or DVD? Personally, if you put a 1 hour AVI on a FULL CD, I'll be happy with the quality, the only problem... you're not doing it for me.
  11. LindbergMTL

    LindbergMTL TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 18

    From: http://www.keepandshare.com/doc3/view.php?u=1833

    "An AVI is actually not a video format in and of itself. The "AVI" file is merely a wrapper, what I like to call a "container" file. It holds video and audio information that would typically be unable to exist as its own file format. This video and audio information is written to and read from the AVI by codecs (compressor-decompressor files).

    Popular codecs include MPEG-4, DivX, Xvid, MJPEG, HuffYUV, and other FourCC variations. Even MPEG and Windows Media Video (WMV) can exist within an AVI file, as the AVI is just video data with a RIFF header surrounding it.

    The AVI format has several distinct drawbacks, with the major one being huge file sizes when using low-compression codecs."

    I guess that is what I am using...

    " DV-AVI files should not be confused with �classic� AVI files (the standard Video for Windows), which have the same extension *.avi but contain much less information. In order to play DV-AVI files on a computer, you need special software called codec. This software must be the same used by the DV device to create the video file ."

    "If you wish to store video recorded on a DV tape on a computer hard disk, you can choose between two file formats: DV-AVI and MPEG (MPEG-1 or MPEG-2). DV-AVI files allow you to store video without loss of quality. This means that if you write a DV-AVI file out to a new tape, its quality will be the same as the original video. However, DV-AVI files need large space on disk (about 13 GB per hour of video). MPEG-1 and MPEG-2 allow compressing video; video stored as MPEG-2 provides better quality but requires larger disk space than MPEG-1 (about 4.5 GB vs. 700 MB per hour of video). MPEG-2 is the best format for archiving and distribution, while DV-AVI is very good for editing. "

    It seems that some of you guys were refering to Windows AVI and not DV-AVI. Windows AVI doesn't have the quality of DV-AVI.
  12. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    Only if its not encoded with the quality of DV-AVI's.
    I think the client wants windows AVI, it is the most "compatible", I don't think you would need any additional codecs to play.
    Of course, windows AVI sucks and you should just use mpeg-2 or something similar with standard dvix.
  13. LindbergMTL

    LindbergMTL TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 18

    I agree with you Strategic. AVI can be very light or heavy depending on the parameters of transfer.

    My client uses a product called Dartfish (Dartfish.com). It is a video program that allows performances analysis from videos , specially used by athletic organisations. I will check on what video quality they need.
  14. strategic

    strategic TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,020

    Ok, good luck!:)
  15. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,973   +2,527

    1 hour of DVD-Video, depending upon how much compression is applied can produce up to a full DVD of files, about 4.7GB. This is at a resolution of 720 X 480 maximum.

    To the best of my knowledge, .Avi is not specifically limited to any one resolution. To the untrained eye, it seems like the "files" are hi-def in content. This would explain the huge size, to be sure. So, while strategic may be correct the the average Avi file is 800MB, it should be self evident that these "files" are not average Avi files.
    And as was stated earlier, hi-def content is the specific reason the the Blu-Ray, (and the now defunct Hi-Def) formats were created. Blu-Ray DL discs are twenty buck apiece and hold 50GB. Single layer discs are 25GB.

    It does make it difficult to even suggest a course of action, when the "files" are constantly referred to as the "files". Which you gotta admit, is cryptic, mystical nonsense.

    As far as video capture speed, who knows what the bottleneck is. It could be the speed of the card, the speed of the tape, the speed of the buss, or the speed of the CPU in the laptop. The only point I'd even consider conceding, is that the buss and that CPU probably have the least influence. However, since you're working through a capture card, how (or what as) is it saving the files.

    As soon as any compression and/or transcoding regimen is implemented, the time required will skyrocket.

    I have said something similar to this before, but it bears repeating, IMHO, you have bitten off more than you can chew. You do not have the equipment necessary to carry a very large complex and time consuming task through to a resolution. OK, it's really easy to hold down the record button on a video camera, and then all you have to do is find somebody to sucker into doing the post production work, but that task usually more time consuming by a multiple of twenty.

    Anyway it might help to know what "the files" actually are, but I frankly doubt it.

    BS will only get you so far in a technical task, or for that matter Be-essing somebody into believing that they can easily do it.
  16. LindbergMTL

    LindbergMTL TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 18

    As of now, my conclusion is that I will only capture and burn in mpeg-2 formats.

    My consumer-type machines cannot handle DV-AVI in such big files.

    So my next question, how am I going to get the best MPEG-2 quality from what is available out there?

    Any suggestions on or advice on that?
  17. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +421

    I've sat back and watched this for a while. Mict was right when he asked me if I was sure that DV format was mpeg2, which it wasn't, he was right. It is that dv-avi that has been pasted twice above.

    Now here is the only 2 methods of proceeding that I see.

    1. Purchase (or use one of the freeware ones, but probably purchase ones are easier to use, and you could charge for it) a program to convert that dv format to mpeg2 and then use another (probably purchase program) to author a DVD. Mpeg2 is the native DVD format, so if it was suggested above that mpeg2 is less common than anything else it is probably false. Nearly everyone has a dvd player, not everyone have a computer, and probably even fewer have a dvd player that will play divx/xvid.

    2. Do everything in #1 except instead of mpeg2 convert to xvid or divx and burn to a CD. This means they have to watch on a computer or have a dvd player that is hooked to a tv (or any device that can read xvid connected to tv).

    In any case, if all of the disks are of the same material, then once you have one you can just copy that rather than doing the long transcoding procedure every time.
  18. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,973   +2,527

    I'm with you, encode one, copy the rest. But, I think that these are actually 400 different source material issues. Like I said before, 6 minutes @ 16 X, presto!

    As somebody so eloquently informed me, "dude, he said they were 400 different tapes". Well all righty then, you take care of it!! DILLIGAF, I said in a loud voice, but only to myself, since I've already been chastised today for being my lovable old self. And in this very thread, no less.

    I just wandered back from Best Buy with the Dollhouse and Battle Star Galactica DVD sets, my TV is working on a grand scale, Grace Park is more interesting than anything here, so it's off with me then, he said concluding his post with a "tweet".
  19. Mictlantecuhtli

    Mictlantecuhtli TS Evangelist Posts: 4,345   +11

    I guess it's too late if you've already decided on the format, but anyway, if your source files are relatively small and light, then the DV-AVIs would be small and light too, as the compression wouldn't change. So if you're getting 13 GB out of something small, you're most likely capturing raw video (ie. no compression).
  20. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    Yes yes anyway...If you have decided on compressing with mpeg-2 on a laptop (as captaincranky has kindly reminded you is a bad idea, I agree), then you yourself need the decode and encoding codecs. I don't know if windows comes default with them or if you put them on yourself. Some converters do come with their own codecs, but I recommend downloading k-lite mega codecs pack and installing with the "lots of stuff" option.

    I think mpeg-2 quality depends on the bitrate.
  21. LindbergMTL

    LindbergMTL TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 18

    The source is 400 X 1-hour long miniDVs.
  22. LindbergMTL

    LindbergMTL TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 18

    thanks, I was just lookiing for the best codecs. I'll check then out. Any other suggestions as to which best encoder decoder to use?

    thanks all
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