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Highest rez and cleanest way to capture RGB / VGA output from computer to MacBook Pro

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David Notowitz
Highest rez and cleanest way to capture RGB / VGA output from computer to MacBook Pro
on Mar 14, 2013 at 2:59:00 am

Friends,
I have the need to capture video directly from the RGB/VGA output of a computer. I want to maintain the resolution as much as possible. A few thoughts that may or may not help:

My MacBook Pro has a Thunderbolt port. Would that be the best way to bring this video into my system? Or would the Firewire port be better?

Should I consider adding a converter to change the RGB/VGA output port to DVI? Would that it make easier to find a converter?

Should I consider doing this with two converters -- first a converter from RGB/VGA to HDMI, and then another to convert from HDMI to Thunderbolt? Would this mess with the quality of the video? I'd like to find a single box to do the whole process, but I haven't found it yet.

Thank you everyone!

NCAVF, The National Center for Audio and Video Forensics
http://www.NCAVF.com


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David Notowitz
Re: Highest rez way to capture RGB / VGA output from computer to MacBook Pro
on Mar 14, 2013 at 3:35:43 am

One other option, if it can be done, is to convert the RGB/VGA to USB, but I've never used the USB port to capture video. Does that work, and would it work in this situation?
Thanks again everyone! I'm looking forward to hearing your thoughts.

NCAVF, The National Center for Audio and Video Forensics
http://www.NCAVF.com


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Jim Sustacek
Re: Highest rez way to capture RGB / VGA output from computer to MacBook Pro
on Mar 14, 2013 at 1:39:49 pm

We've had good success with Epiphan VGA2USB devices:

http://www.epiphan.com/products/frame-grabbers/

The included software can record directly from the device and looks really crisp. The lower-end devices may not give you a full frame rate when capturing higher resolutions, but it's definitely fine for more static presentations. (Although we can generally get higher frame rates than those listed in Epiphan's specs.) Also, you can access the Epiphan device signal in many other video encoding programs if you so desire, although the image is less crisp going through them.

Another option would be Wirecast to record/stream a remote screen using their Desktop Presenter utility. Again, it won't be as crisp as the direct VGA2USB, although you'll probably get a consistently higher frame rate, and you have more flexibility for outputs and mixing, if you want to get into that.

Otherwise, you're going to be scan converting or scaling to get it to HDMI/component video, which can get expensive and will probably never equal the quality of the direct VGA2USB signal.


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David Notowitz
Re: Highest rez way to capture RGB / VGA output from computer to MacBook Pro
on Mar 14, 2013 at 4:11:02 pm

Thanks Jim. I'll buy one now.

NCAVF, The National Center for Audio and Video Forensics
http://www.NCAVF.com


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