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Live Video Capture - Analog to Computer

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Teresa Brown
Live Video Capture - Analog to Computer
on Dec 31, 2008 at 8:16:23 pm

I want to live capture event video from a video mixer's analog output directly into a MacPro (into Final Cut). This would either be through something like a BlackMagic card or by running through an external analog-to-digital converter (or an extra camcorder). Footage will be standard definition. I also need to determine if I should be able to simultaneously capture analog audio to this same computer? I've been told this will work - but would like second opinion confirmation before making an equipment purchase.


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Walter Soyka
Re: Live Video Capture - Analog to Computer
on Jan 3, 2009 at 5:14:50 pm

Hi Teresa,

Which card are you looking at? As long as your capture card has analog audio in, you'll be fine, but you'll be limited to however many channels analog audio inputs your card features (probably 2). If you want to go multi-channel, you may need to convert the audio to digital before feeding the capture card.

Both Blackmagic and AJA include utilities that you can use to capture your video outside of FCP.

I always recommend running a backup record; you don't want to ruin the shoot because your computer crashed while capturing.

Walter Soyka, Principal
Keen Live, Inc.
Presentation, Motion Graphics & Widescreen Design
RenderBreak: A Blog on Innovation in Production



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Teresa Brown
Re: Live Video Capture - Analog to Computer
on Jan 3, 2009 at 5:54:41 pm

Liked the BlackMagic Intensity Pro card until started looking ahead toward purchase of a Sony EX1 camera soon. Would like future capability to capture direct from EX1 to computer through its SDI outputs for HD/HDV - my MacPro only has digital FireWire. Hope to find device/card that allows SDI and analog capture for flexibility. But for this project, both audio and video are coming from analog sources.

Our audio tech has recorded multi-track for other projects - but this project is more IMAG focused so the budget/turn-around time doesn't warrant going multi-track.

I like to record second source back up audio for live events too. This event is challenging me on that - do you have suggestions? There will be 7 hours total recording time in two sessions with 2 hour window in between. Rock concert, multiple speakers, plus some ambient audience interaction would be nice.


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Walter Soyka
Re: Live Video Capture - Analog to Computer
on Jan 3, 2009 at 6:11:08 pm

For SD, I'd look into renting a couple Beta decks, and overlap the second record a couple minutes before the first tape ends. Then you'll have the whole program on tape if the capture fails for any reason. Roll a DVD record on 4-hr mode for peace of mind. Three and a half hours is a long capture -- that would make me nervous!

I just bought an AJA Kona LHe -- it does analog video in SD and HD, and it does SDI/HD-SDI.

Walter Soyka, Principal
Keen Live, Inc.
Presentation, Motion Graphics & Widescreen Design
RenderBreak: A Blog on Innovation in Production



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