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Need your suggestion to buy a video capturing card

Discussion in 'Video capturing from analog sources' started by girlgirl, Mar 18, 2005.

  1. girlgirl

    girlgirl Member

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    Hi,

    I'm a newbie in video capture. My need is simple. I would like to be able to capture & record programs (with sounds) from the television to my computer.

    I'm using a Dell 733 MHZ computer, 512 MB RAM. I understand I will need some sort of video capturing device (some card to stick onto a PCI slot?). I can only afford to spend under $60. Can you folks recommend a product brand?

    Thanks,
    GirlGirl
     
  2. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    Anything with the Conexant BT878 chip on it.
    Shouldn't cost more than $35 US.
     
  3. girlgirl

    girlgirl Member

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    Hi, thank you for the reply. Right now, I'm thinking that maybe I should get a USB interface capturing device instead of the PCI card. That of course has to do with the readings of negative responses from some users for their painful experience during the card installation.

    So, there I was, browsing the buy.com, and came up with a USB device (URL link is below) which is quite within my $60 budget. Would you recommend it, based on my need?

    http://www.buy.com/prod/Plextor_Con...o_Converter_USB_2_0/q/loc/50088/10364440.html

    -Girl
     
  4. girlgirl

    girlgirl Member

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    Oops, have to click SKIP on the upper right hand corner of the screen in order to go directly to the product link.
     
  5. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    I never recommend USB capture devices.
    USB 2.0 is too slow to capture real-time, Full D1, DVD mpeg, and is too expensive to use for avi, when a $20 card can do extremely high quality avi, then you use a standalone encoder to encode it to mpeg-2 for dvd.
    Save your money on the device, spend it on a good encoder. The results are much better.
    If time is a serious concern, increase your budget (about double), and get a real-time mpeg-2 encoding card.
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2005
  6. girlgirl

    girlgirl Member

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  7. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    Sure. That's one of many, and it does have the BT878 chipset.
    Once you get it, check out VirtualVCR for capturing and TV tuning (it's way better than the stock cap program) and also look for updated drivers.
    Get the Panasonic DV avi codec (it's free), and also get Huffyuv codec (also free).
    Use one of those two for your captures.
    If you want another good one, it's called mjpeg, available a couple of places, but I don't think it's free.
    If you get the Panasonic codec, you can use Windows Movie Maker to capture, and edit, your movies, then export as DV-AVI, and encode in any good standalone encoder to DVD mpeg-2.
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2005
  8. girlgirl

    girlgirl Member

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    Thanks a lot, dude.
     
  9. Minion

    Minion Senior member

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    Hi, One problem you will probably run into is that your PC is far to Slow to Capture full resolution Mpeg and unless you have a second Fast hard Drive you will not be able to capture Full resolution AVI either so the only real option is to capture at a very low Resolution or Get a hardware Encoder device which would cost a Lot more than you are willing to Spend....

    I would suggest you think about Upgradeing your PC before you consider getting into any major Video capture...
    You can easilly Upgrade your PC to a 2.0ghz or Faster for under $150 which would be fast enough to capture full resolution full Quality video but till then you aren"t going to be able to do much video Capture ,well not without a good share of problems...

    Cheers
     
  10. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    Even her Dell will capture nicely, using Huffy, at 320x240. That will still make a decent dvd, or a completely watchable avi (on the monitor), even at full screen. Not great, but not bad, and it's the cheapest solution.
    If you want better captures, spend money on a second hard drive, and a hardware mpeg-2 encoder card. If you want to do it right, it's time to buy a new computer, with two hard drives, AND a good capture card.
    For the $25 capture card, and a $59 encoder (Canopus Procoder Express), she'll end up with really nice videos, on (S)VCD.
    If she doesn't want to do (S)VCD, then capturing to DV-avi, Huffyuv, or picvideo mjpeg will result in a good watchable video (on the computer). If quality isn't as much of an issue, then capture to MS mpeg4, or Div3 or similar, to get a smaller filesize for storage.
    If you're going to watch it once, and delete it, then Huffyuv would probably work best.
     
  11. pfh

    pfh Guest

    I don't think that Dell has usb 2.0 spec. and that would be the problem with her usb. On the other hand, usb 2.0 IS fast enough to capture and is not at all too slow. I've been doing it for several months now. Have done ~50 vhs to dvd. Check the usb specs. and they show speeds comparable to fire wire.
    The Plextor device she looked into is software based and comparable to a Dazzle. But considering her machine I concur with your pci card suggestion. And yes, even after that it's best if she upgrades the computer. She already has two strikes against her- old comp. and new to video.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 23, 2005
  12. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    What format/aspect are you capturing to? Do you have a separate hard drive to cap to? Is your computer faster than hers? Are you using USB 2.0?
    Too many variables ;)
     
  13. pfh

    pfh Guest

    My comp specs are in sig. I can cap full D1 720x480 and average caps are ~5000kbs
     
  14. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    From your specs, I would say you're on the edge.
    Anything slower, and it may not do D1 at 5000kbps.
    8 meg HD buffer sure helps :)
     
  15. pfh

    pfh Guest

    How'd you know I had W.D. 8meg drives?? :)

    Just for fun I capped at 12000kbps once but I was out of dvd spec with GOPs so DVD Lab objected.
     
  16. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    Because WD doesn't make a 2 meg buffer drive of that size, and you wouldn't be able to cap full D1 to a 2 meg buffer drive (probably).
    Just say it was a good guess :)
     

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