Page 2 of 8: Recording NTSC Video to DVD-R

Many of the video products on the market are supposed to provide video capture that can be burned to DVD-R. Let the buyer beware! Most of these products, particularly those that provide data to the computer with a USB port, only capture at 320X240 or similar resolution. Run this quality of video full screen or on a large screen TV and generate an opinion of it! The same goes for 1394 (Firewire) capture. Most inexpensive consumer products either capture at low resolution in real time or capture full frame and later reconstruct in DV or MPEG format. Some products capture high resolution firewire video with real time AVI compression although the compression codec provides minimal compression. After the fact, the video is compressed to useable MPEG2 for DVD-R generation (Ulead DVD Movie Factory). The file size for ten minutes of AVI before MPEG2 compression was 2 GIGS! This is an appropriate file size for professional DVD generation since the MPEG files are created after capture. But minicomputers are probably used for this huge undertaking.

After two months of experimentation with numerous programs, I did arrive at a workable solution. Numerous products were tried included Cyberlink's Power Video Recorder II and Power Director Pro, Intervideo's Wincoder, MGI VideoWave and Dazzle Main Actor. The difficulty is in capturing, with realtime MPEG2 compression, a 640X480 file that is in video and audio sync and burning it in a DVD-R format that is readable by most computer and settop players. Professionals use very expensive real time MPEG2 compression cards such as the Pinnacle DV2000 with a street price of $1900.



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