Need suggestions for downloading and editing DV tapes

Discussion in 'Video' started by david_simonds|1, Aug 13, 2013.

  1. Friends,
    Four years ago I shot about five hours of video while travelling in Egypt. I used a recent Canon video recorder (top of line consumer model) and recorded on DV cassettes.
    I would now like to transfer all of that to a hard drive and begin the process of editing it. While I have the motivation, I do not have the technical skill set would would appreciate any suggestions.
    First of all, what is the best way to transfer the data from the camera (with cassette loaded) to the computer. Given the amount of data that must be in those cassettes I was planning on getting a dedicated external hard drive (1T? or 2T) so as not bog down my computer's internal drive. Is that a good idea? And when I transfer the data, should I separate it, say in ten minute increments, to make it more manageable? Just guessing on this.
    So once I have the files in the box, I will need an editing program. Suggestions for that? I have a recent Dell desktop with a fast processor and 18 gb of RAM. I do a fair amount of big file photo-editing from scanned medium and large format images.
    Perhaps what I should get is a book on video editing as well. Suggestions, once again.
    Any other words of wisdom as I set out on this project would be appreciated.
    Much obliged,
  2. DV is about 3.5 megabytes per second. A full 60 minute tape will take up about 11-12 gigabytes. If you recorded in 90 minute mode, you are looking at about 17 gig or so. A 1 terabyte drive is more than enough.
    I'd just dump them in a tape at a time and cut them up in your editing software. My 7 year old Mac laptop can handle that, so I'd hope your "recent, fast" Dell should without a problem.
    You will need some sort of editing software to capture the video over Firewire. It's not like a file transfer from a thumb drive, you have to dump it in real-time.
  3. Matthew,
    Obliged for your quick reply.
    I just downloaded a trial for the basic Pinnacle editing software and will give that a go. Any others that you can suggest?
  4. Sorry, I'm Mac only when it comes to photo/video production, so I'll let someone else chime in on software recommendations.
  5. I've used Sony Vegas and Adobe Premiere video editing software, both of which I believe are availble in both full and "lite" versions.
  6. Adobe Premiere Elements would be another option for importing and processing your DV footage. I haven't used Elements for DV-import, but I have no problems working on my AVCHD clips.
    Any editing program will have some sort of learning curve, so don't despair if your results are not top notch at the first attempt. Just keep trying, and your skills will develop...
    There is a ton of tutorials and other useful stuff to be found on YouTube and other internet resources, so I'm not sure whether you need a book on editing.
  7. Thanks all. Any love for the Pinnacle software?

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