I have a couple of old video cameras that utilize RCA outputs (Red, White, Yellow) and a camera with S-video out. What hardware do you recommend for capturing the play back from those devices to covert to digital?
I see that there are some USB devices being sold as such, but just wondered it someone here can make a recommendation.
I hadn’t envisioned a stand-alone unit but this looks like exactly what I need. Much appreciated.
Being a media snob – I wonder how their encoding algorithm could/should be tweaked. One of the benefits of just getting access to a direct feed via USB in or an expansion card is that I could fiddle with the raw feed and codecs to my heart’s delight or detriment.
I used a generic USB capture device a few years ago (made by Pinnacle, if I remember correctly.) Linux recognized it (because, of course it does) and I can’t remember having any major issues. I’m not sure if I ended up using VLC player to record/capture the input, or if it was Handbrake.
A lot has changed and developed in the software since then, so I’d bet its probably a much smoother process these days.
I used OpenShot the other day to repair an old VHS capture that had lost frames for some reason or other, and I could hardly believe how far that software has come! Wow!
FWIW, I converted a few old home movies a long time ago and went through this same search. I used an El Gato for a while but I ran across some post or article (no idea where now) that actually suggested an SVideo or Composite to HDMI adapter and then just a cheap HDMI capture card and it really did work better. I got much cleaner video without all of the software tweaking I was attempting with the El Gato. The two separate devices were also cheaper combined than the El Gato (though I had already purchased it so in my case that didn’t matter).
Back in the day before I had a digital video camera and instead recorded on tape, I’d use a Canopus video converter to capture video into an old PC. Had to get a firewire card for one of the pci slots though. It worked fairly well, I would also allow capturing video from the tv as well. The highest resolution it would capture was 720p.
I used to have a camera that had firewire. It was a quick and easy way to access what was on the camera. But the tapes I’m looking to convert are Hi8 and VHS; so there’s no straight forward way to connect.
A VCR with component connections in the back should work for the VHS and some converters. That’s assuming the VHS tapes are your personal tapes and don’t have copy protection. I don’t know what to tell you what to do about the Hi8 if you don’t have a Hi8 camera. Even then you might have to use the same manufacturer.