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Q: Software/Hardware for Editing Videos? ( Answered,   0 Comments )
Subject: Software/Hardware for Editing Videos?
Category: Computers
Asked by: rthrockmorton40-ga
List Price: $30.00
Posted: 15 Nov 2006 11:34 PST
Expires: 15 Dec 2006 11:34 PST
Question ID: 783015
Now that I'm semi-retired, I've decided that it is time to get into
editing videos. I have about 45 hours of video on tapes, plus about 10
hours on digital video tapes, and a bunch of slides. My goal is to
create a set of DVDs (probably 10 hours or less total) with family
highlights, adding subtitles, and adding music to the slides (the
video has sound). I have a fairly new PC, but no special video
hardware or software. What do you recommend for me? Thanks very much
for your help.
Subject: Re: Software/Hardware for Editing Videos?
Answered By: sublime1-ga on 15 Nov 2006 14:51 PST

A lot will depend on the desired outcome - that is, how professional
you want the results to be, how extensive is the editing you want
to accomplish, and how much time you want to spend in the process.

The following page, by Bob Hudson of Sign Video Ltd, provides a very
detailed analysis of the methods available depending on the speed
at which you hope to accomplish the transfer and the amount of editing
you want to do:

Method 1:
"Capture the VHS video to a computer video editing program
 using an analog-to-DV converter (which includes many DV/Digital8
 camcorders as well as standalone analog-to-DV converters), encode
 it to MPEG-2 and author a DVD"
Much more on the page about the pros and cons of this method:

Essentially, this method gives you the most freedom to edit as
you wish, and add audio, transitions, special effects, and so
on. It also takes the longest.

For this method, you need hardware in the form of an analog-to-DV
converter, as well as some form of computer editing program. You
can often find these bundled at a reduced price, such as the
ADS PYRO Studio bundle on this page from the firewire-1394 site:

ADS PYRO Studio Includes:                Retail Value  

Sony Vegas+DVD Production Suite          $999.95
ADS PYRO A/V Link DV Converter           $199.00
ADS PYRO 1394 PCI Card 	                 $49.00
FireWire Cable                           $20.00

List Price: $699.99
Instant Rebate: - $250.00
Your Cost, ONLY: $449.99

The firewire PCI card and firewire cable allow you to connect
the ADS PYRO A/V Link DV Converter to interface with the Sony
Vegas+DVD Production Suite after you install the software on
your computer. You then do the editing in that program.

Another option is a card which converts the analog to DV.
The Canopus company offers a variety of conversion products,
including both cards that you install in your computer, and
external units such as the ADS PYRO A/V Link DV Converter

Here's a professional card that gets installed on your computer:
Canopus MVRD4000  Price: US $1,895.00

A less expensive option is the Canopus ADVC100, at $239.95,
an external unit available on this page from Videoguys:

A features comparison chart of Canopus external boxes:

Here's the page on Canopus which contrasts both internal
PCI cards and external units:

Of course, you would need to install a DVD burner, or DVD-R
(for DVD-Recorder) or DVD-RW (for DVD-ReWriter) on your computer,
and purchase blank DVDs or DVD-RWs to make the recordings.
When you purchase the DVD burner, it will likely come with
software which allows for some amount of editing, so if you
go this route, you may want to explore the software it comes
with before opting to purchase a separate piece of editing
software such as the Sony Vegas+DVD Production Suite included
in the bundle above.

Other toys include this DV Keyboard with Jog/Shuttle Controller:

Method 2:

"Capture the video to the computer as MPEG-2 using hardware
 capture devices that convert the VHS to MPEG-2 as they capture
 and then author and burn a DVD."
Much more on the page about the pros and cons of this method:

This method allows for limited editing in the form of cuts and

An example of an analog to MPEG-2 converter is this box from
ADS, the ADS USB Instant DVD 2.0 MPEG-2 Encoder, which uses a
USB port and converts directly to MPEG-2:

Some people report that converting from analog to MPEG-2
directly doesn't produce the same quality as converting from
analog to DV and then to MPEG-2, as in the first method.

Method 3:

"Connect your VHS VCR or camcorder to a standalone DVD recorder
 that works much like a VCR. This VHS to DVD recorder basically
 gives you a DVD copy of your tape in real time."
Much more on the page about the pros and cons of this method:

This method is the easiest and fastest, but allows for the least
amount of editing.

Here's an article on by Robert Silva about using a
standalone DVD recorder to copy tapes from a VCR:

Depending on the inputs available on the DVD recorder you purchase,
you might need an analog to DV converter to convert the VCR output
to the digital video inputs (IEEE-1394, Firewire, i-Link) that allow
the transfer of audio and video direct to DVD in real time.

You could also buy a "DVD VCR" combo unit, and record directly from
VHS to DVD. Here's a page from Robert Silva about the better units:

Here's another page of FAQs about DVD recorders by Robert:

Clearly the first method provides you with more control over the
process, the most editing options, and the best quality, which
is why I focused on it the most. I think it provides the method
which will work best with your stated intentions. It's just a 
matter of finding solutions within the price range that will 
work for you and be compatible with your computer. If you have
questions, please post a Request for Clarification before rating
this answer.


Additional information may be found from further exploration
of the links provided above, as well as those resulting from
the Google searches outlined below.

Searches done, via Google:

vcr to dvd

"analog-to-DV converter"


"dvd recorder"

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