Analog/dv or wait for fireire vcr? : LUSENET : Editing DV Films : One Thread


I am putting together an NLE system in January. I have around $5000. $2500 will go to a pentium 2 450 / the other $2500 to hardware and software.

My dillema is: I am shooting a feature on a Canon Optura (Don't laugh it looks great so far). It has a firewire output as well as standard outputs (video, audio & stereo). I am getting the system primarily for the feature, but would also like to edit friend's demo reels and various VHS material. Should I purchase a dv/analog card for more money? Or should I just go dv, wait for the $999 Panasonic Firewire VCRs in February? Elite video has a DV to Analog (and vice versa) converter which can help the analog to dv. It cost around $500.

Anybody have any suggestions?

-- brian mcgrail (, December 17, 1998


For the budget you listed you might wanted to look at the dvrex systems. I haven't used one myself--my brief stint with native dv editing was with a FAST DV Master Pro system--but I've read some favorable comments about the dvrex system from satisfied users.

Personally, I ended up building an NLE with Matrox Digisuite LE hardware and SpeedRazor software. It's a terrific system, and although it's above the budget you listed, in the end you have a professional editing system that you can turn around and do post- production work with to recoup the costs (and then some). You didn't mention what part of the country you're in... if you happen to be in the Washington, DC area then I'd be happy to let you tinker with my system to see what the setup can do.

-- John Windmueller (, December 18, 1998.

FireWire is just another name for the IEEE 1394 terminal. It's a standard for all video equipment so that they can talk to each other. I don't know the rules, but I think that it has to be installed on all video equipment. According to the Canon website, the Visitura can be hooked up to a VCR and you can edit using software in the camera. It's linear, and obviously you can't do a great editing job. But you can put together a rough cut. Check your VCR. I think you should be able to hook up your Optura with the cables that come with it.

-- Dan Seitz (, January 18, 1999.

Check out the Canopus DVRex M1. It's THE BEST editing investment I've ever made. A lot of others will agree.

Check out their site at Post any message you'd like on the users forum.

-- Brad Parsons (, May 27, 1999.

With the pentium 2 450 you could use the MotoDv package. Fits your budget and gets good results with that system. I doubt anyone should laugh at the Optura, I use an XL1 for my main camera but, have 2 opturas for roving/tightspots and the picture quality is great as long as your are in good lighting. The lightweight and compactablity is great for on-location sports videography.

-- Don Farrish (, June 29, 1999.

I needed to be able to use both DV (shot from my camera) and analogue (donated footage from others) in the same project, was on a tight budget, so went with a DV raptor (firewire only) card and purchased a sony TRV 900. The camera takes analogue - both svideo and composite - signals in. Sure I have to record all the analogue stuff onto mini DV, but the tapes are cheap, the card works well on my pentium 2 266MHZ (though I would suggest a P3 450). The DVCAM pro version of the TRV900 (the pdr 100 I think??) also has analogue in. Works for me.

-- Barry Hannah (, October 18, 1999.

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