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Burning from mini-DV to DVD

I have a Panasonic GS320 that takes terrific movies and I have no problem downloading and editing, but it seems impossible to burn them to a DVD. I did the download through USB. I got the impression from another post that using Firewire instead would solve the problem. Is that true and if so why? Different file type? I'm beginning to think making DVd isn't possible because the 2 editing programs that come with the camera don't seem to even have the option of burning to DVD. I can't believe that's so.

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Downloading to what file or video type file.
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The processes are different and

not necessarily dependent...

Once the video is in the computer, the source of the video (miniDV tape camcorder, hard drive based camcorder, memory card camcorder, emailed or downloaded .AVI or .MOV or whatever) does not matter. The video editing application allows for various modifications including titles, credits, crossfades, other cuts and audio manipulation... then a DVD burning application takes that edited video and allows the appropriate format for DVD player use... including menuing to select scenes (if scenes were specified), background pictures in the menuing section... AND creating the VOB files which most DVD players can playback...

So, by my estimation, burning a DVD is at least two steps away from the original video source - and the camcorder video storage format is irrelevant. Granted, miniDV tape will provide best quality video if it comes straight from the camcorder over Firewire to the computer and editor and DVD burner, but any video source, presuming the video got into the computer, will make it to DVD - if the DVD burning application (not the camcorder and not the video editing application) allows it to do that.

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The processes are different...

Excellent answer. The issue is expecting too much from the software that comes with the camera. It allows you to edit/manipulate in various ways and save it to your hard drive, back to tape and in my case even to an SD card, but NOT to a DVD. That requires a separate software program. I somehow (kids?) seem to have such a program already, Intervideo WinDVD, that seems should do the trick, but when I get to the point of actually starting the burn process, it brings you to a drop down menu to choose a device...and it's empty. Perhaps the download in the previous post will help. Thanks to you both.

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There are different types of optical drives...

CD-read only; CD read/write; CD read/write + DVD read only... and CD read/write + DVD read/write...

"Intervideo WinDVD, that seems should do the trick, but when I get to the point of actually starting the burn process, it brings you to a drop down menu to choose a device...and it's empty"

Since we don;t know what type of computer or optical drive you have, it is difficult to tell, but could it be yout optical drive is either CD-read only; CD read/write; CD read/write + DVD read only... which means WinDVD does not have a DVD writer to which to burn the video data... Does that make sense?

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... and another thing...

"The issue is expecting too much from the software that comes with the camera"...

The camcorder manufacturers make the hardware and firmware - yes, I agree, the bundled stuff is usually not so good - or a watered down version of what was good software in the full version before getting watered down...

Since we now know you use Windows OS on your computer, there are several (affordable) video apps available. Sony Vegas comes up a lot in this forum. ULead (from Corel) and a few others - but I am merely repeating what other regular posters to this forum have shared - I use Macintoshes (iMovie and FinalCut) for editing, so I have no opinion of the Windows video post production applications...

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...and another thing

Your comment about the optical drive is logical, but i do have a cd/dvd burner on an HP Pavilion a720n. While I've burned lots of cd's, this is my first attempt at a dvd, so i may need to chek ou that function a bit. I've heard of that Corel software and I found a link on this site to AVS4you that seems to have a few downloads that may help others with their moviemaking.

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