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Recording Computer Video Footage

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Jason Norman
Recording Computer Video Footage
on Oct 2, 2009 at 10:55:55 pm

I am not at all sure where to post this question, or where to visit to find solutions to this question but this community is so strong I am sure I will be able to find the help I seek here.

We are producing a small sales reel for a video game start up company that hopes to attract investors. So the question is inevitably asked how do I best capture video out of the computer for use as B-Roll. We are shooting the interview and "non-game" B-Roll on an EX1 and EX3.

Without knowing too much about computer video output I do know this, that the PCs display out is dual-DVI.

Knowing that my initial reaction is to just purchase a DVI to Component cable and set the PC to mirror display then crash record with a DVCAM deck. If there is a better way to make this work I am all ears.

Again, thank you for your help in advance!

Best,
Jason


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Mike Smith
Re: Recording Computer Video Footage
on Oct 3, 2009 at 8:47:31 am

DVCam of course will be in standard def .. will that either give a decent reflection of your screen display, or edit with your xdcam hd stuff ...?

Does screen capture software like e.g. Camtasia not work with your setup ..?

Of course you could try going old-fashioned and point your camera at your monitor ..?


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Rich Rubasch
Re: Recording Computer Video Footage
on Oct 5, 2009 at 12:35:27 am

On a Mac look no further than Telestream's Screenflow.

Will capture, allow you to edit, animate, export and more. And it looks great!


Rich Rubasch
Tilt Media Inc.
Video Production and Post
Owner/President/Editor/Designer/Animator


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Jason Norman
Re: Recording Computer Video Footage
on Oct 5, 2009 at 1:53:39 am

We are capturing from a Windows based PC. My concern is that because we are capturing a video game being played in action that using a secondary program could cause the game to become glitchy and not capture smooth video.

I will try a few tests on Tuesday. And let you know what works.

J. Nor
"Life is either a daring adventure or nothing"
-Helen Keller


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Mark Suszko
Re: Recording Computer Video Footage
on Oct 6, 2009 at 1:54:03 pm

If that's your worry, then you want to rent a high end scan converter/scaler, this will connect between your computer and the displays, and give you a video tap in various output formats that can go right to a recorder. The high end ones will also allow you to pan the image and zoom in on parts of it, if you need to, all without having to run any programs on the computer.

Good ones in my opinion are those starting above $2k to buy, though we have and use some as cheap as $99 for less critical work. I suggest the Communication Specialties Scan-Do Ultra D, a high end Extron, Faroudja, or Sony.


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Jason Norman
Re: Recording Computer Video Footage
on Oct 8, 2009 at 1:43:43 am

So this project just got a step more complicated.

I got the video to capture to tape out of the S-Video on the PC to the S-Video input on the Sony DSR-45 DVCAM deck. I could not get the DVI monitor out to work apparently it was an issue of image resolution because the PC could not send a 720x480 signal to the deck. The PC would recognize the deck as a secondary monitor but the signal would come through all scrambled. Running signal through the S-Video connection the computer would output a 720x480 signal and the picture came out beautiful (albeit SD). So at least I know this will work.

Now the director/producer is concerned about the sync of the video and the audio of our interview. So he would like to record the output of the computer to a HDV camera so it has a higher resolution. I do not know if there is an HDV camera out there that will allow you to record thru it like a deck and still allow the internal microphone to function. Let alone one that will work with our work flow. I have a DVI to Component RGB cable, DVI to S-Video/Composite Video cable, VGA to Component RGB cable, S-Video cable and a variety of conversion pieces to work with.

Isn't it just like a producer to dump this on with less than 24 hours to find a solution.

J. Nor
"Life is either a daring adventure or nothing"
-Helen Keller


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Paolo Ciccone
Re: Recording Computer Video Footage
on Oct 31, 2009 at 7:15:39 am

What about simply align the camera to a good flat screen and shoot the screen in HD? I did some tests with a 30" Cinema Display with my JVC HD100 and it was very nice. In fact I like the look of it better than a straight capture because the computer's output is a bit too crispy.
The trick is to align the camera carefully, to be "flat" front.
The othe radvantage of this method is that you can shoot close-ups of portions of the screen and you get optical magnification, which will look much better than any digital scaling.


--
Paolo Ciccone
Pret-A-3D
http://www.preta3d.com
http://www.paolociccone.com


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