Mac Applications forum


Mac Video Editing's what I need to do...

by fehr1977 / May 1, 2012 7:00 AM PDT

I am trying to figure out what is going to be the best software to use for my projects....

Here's what my projects consist of:

Video footage recorded in HD LP 16:9 on a Sony camcorder
Video footage recorded in .avi format
Video footage recorded on Mini DV

Some but not all of my projects will include all 3 of those, most will be from the Sony and the .avi files but the odd time I will have to incorporate the mini DV's. I would like to be able to edit and then stitch the footage together by date and time. With that said, it is imperative to me that the date and time stamp be visible throughout my movies.
Then I need to be able to burn all of this together so that it can play as a regular DVD, data CD, and/or anything that can be played in a regular PC. Obviously I want the quality to remain at 100%, or as close to it as possible, so I don't want to have to render the video several times in order to achieve this.

I am just about to upgrade my present OS to Lion and need some suggestions as to what editing software I should be using.

PS. Right now I have been using Elgato EyeTV to capture and edit the footage from the Sony. Using iMovie to capture and edit the .avi footage and stitching that together in Visual Hub. I am losing so much quality it isn't even funny! I know there is a better way to do this....I just need help finding it!


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All Answers

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Ouch. AVI is not a format.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 1, 2012 7:16 AM PDT

It's a container and the encoding or format is never a sure thing. I know of no video editor that could lay claim that it will accept all .AVI files.


About the MiniDV tapes. Be sure that you have the camcorder it was made on as the usual MiniDV Deck is a little pricey for some folk.

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Oh and I forgot to add...
by fehr1977 / May 1, 2012 7:53 AM PDT

I am using the original camera that the mini dv's were captured on. The just like with the SD cards I am plugging the camera into EyeTV and then go on editing from there.

Is there something better to be using rather than EyeTV to capture from a Sony camera (SD and MiniDV) on to a Mac?

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For capture from MiniDV we always use firewire.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 1, 2012 7:57 AM PDT

To capture it again seems rather odd. Don't feel bad. Everyone starts somewhere.

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Fire wire from a Sony to a Mac?
by fehr1977 / May 1, 2012 8:14 AM PDT

That can be done?

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Has been done for years.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 1, 2012 8:20 AM PDT

It's something that's as old as the Apples it seems. Sorry but we all start somewhere.

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I knew it could be done with PC
by fehr1977 / May 1, 2012 8:39 AM PDT

but wasn't aware it could be done with Mac...And the date and time stamp still appear in the video? Sorry if I seem confused but I have asked this question several times to several people and am confused as to why this is new info to me...?

If I wasn't so concerned with being able to see the date and time that the video was taken I would just simply use a card reader to get all my video into the editing program and then it wouldn't be such and issue. But because I am a stickler for that (don't ask, lol) I have run into more than a few speed bumps along the way.

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You set the specifications.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 1, 2012 8:44 AM PDT

I have some background in CCTV and surveillance but the one thing is that the time stamp is not acceptable as "proof" anymore. I can't guess or second guess your specs so let's go with what you want to not ramble off into why any decent lawyer can dismiss the time stamps.

So FCP with the noted discussion is fine about moving metadata into the video. But let's say you want the stamp JUST LIKE THE CAMCORDER PUTS ON SCREEN. Then use a capture box like you noted and be done with it?

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On this subject,
by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / May 1, 2012 9:04 AM PDT

Sony called their version of Firewire (IEEE1394) as iLink.
They were one of the first to support the transfer of video directly from the camera to the Mac.
iMovie takes in the video as raw DV without any compression and stores it on the HD.
Whatever is on the tape, or SD card, is taken into iMovie.
Editing is fairly straight forward and it is not until the transfer to iDVD and the subsequent processing of the video to DVD format, that any compression occurs.

All you need is the relevant firewire cable that fits both your camera and your Mac.

Worth checking out.


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by fehr1977 / May 2, 2012 2:31 AM PDT
In reply to: On this subject,

this method doesn't transfer the date and time stamp. Unless there is another program that will allow the date and time stamp to be visible in the video that I am not aware of...?

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Actually it does. It's in the metadata.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 2, 2012 2:36 AM PDT
In reply to: However...

It's the "player" that adds that information. This is rough on folk new to this stuff so give yourself time to catch up.

The date/time is in the digital video so we can always add it on screen during playback.

But there are folk that insist it be there in exactly the same way the camcorder displays it and will not want to know how it got there. (the camcorder added it to the display from the metadata)


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Too many discussions about metadata
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 2, 2012 2:59 AM PDT
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lol Bob...
by fehr1977 / May 2, 2012 4:51 AM PDT

I would love to not have to worry about this but unfortunately it is all apart of the project I am working on.

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No worries for me.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 2, 2012 7:06 AM PDT
In reply to: lol Bob...

I've been through this too many times.

Care to recap what the concerns are now?

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To Recap...
by fehr1977 / May 3, 2012 8:58 AM PDT

Hi Bob,

I am going to go ahead with the upgrade to my Mac and try FCP I don't know that I will get away from EyeTV with that as I still want my date and time stamp. But at the same time I am going to try Dazzle and Pinnacle Studio on my hubby's PC. Ultimately I would prefer to use my Mac but we'll see what the end product looks like from both systems and then go from there.....

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I see that some progress was made.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 3, 2012 9:01 AM PDT
In reply to: To Recap...

The thing about those capture is for some, that's the only solution because they want what they want. I've learned not to go on too long about how this information is in the MiniDV "data" but if they don't catch on fast then it's back to video capture for them.

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About quality at 100%
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 1, 2012 7:24 AM PDT

Nothing today does that as any system we see uses some compression on the video. I can only hope you looked at how much storage you need for say a 30 minute RAW DV clip. To keep the quality at 100% your SPECIFICATION is to never let any editor use any compression.

Right there you moved out of the usual solutions.

Maybe Cinelarra does this?

Why yes it does. But it may not be an Apple version. Sorry but to meet your specs we have a lot to discuss.

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ok...we can lose a bit of quality...
by fehr1977 / May 1, 2012 7:42 AM PDT
In reply to: About quality at 100%

Thank you for responding Bob.

I did not know that about avi...thank you! So I may have to accept that the avi footage won't always work and maybe step away from that....hmmm?

So with the fact that any editor is going to need to compress the video, I can accept that some quality will be lost. With that said where can I go from here?

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You could start with FCP?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 1, 2012 7:54 AM PDT
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