A single layer DVD, capable of storing up to 4.7 gig, will claim 120 minutes of standard definition video storage. A double layer DVD, capable of storing up to 8.5 gig, will claim 240 minutes... Generally, when you throw in menuing and some images and music on the DVD menu background, there is a little less than the 120/240 minutes because there is less space for the actual "feature" video footage. I usually end up using a couple hundred meg for the menuing/scene selection background and sound track so this leaves about 4.5 gig or 8.5 gig of available "feature" space (which is usually less than that, anyway)...
If you want a DVD playable in a regular DVD player, then the video needs to be in standard definition. What I have found is that it is REALLY clear standard def... but it is standard def.
DVD video compression is not "flexible" (more available space = less compression). If you try to fit 125 minutes of video on that single layer disc, the DVD authoring application shouldn't let you (not enough space) - at least, that is how iDVD and DVD Studio works... but it will fit on the double layer disc with several gig to spare.
The other advantage to moving to high definition camcorders now is that burning a DVD is not the only way to share high quality video.
You can secure access to your video at vimeo.com and even YouTube.com... I recently uploaded a H.264 encoded, 720p, video to both. Even now at YouTube, you *can* watch it in the regular, very highly compressed, not-so-good quality video we've all seen... but there is now a "View in High Quality" (at vimeo.com there is a button on the right side of the video windo that turns HD on or off) - the difference is pretty amazing - not great in full-window mode, and full-window is certainly not local DVD-to-TV quality, but it might be enough... That assumes a pretty decent broadband internet connection and computer for the viewer - but I am merely trying to illustrate that sending DVDs is not the only way to share video...
Hey All, I'm planning to buy a Hi Def camcorder but need some help! I currently own a 3ccd Panasonic PV-GS150 which i'm having problems with and need to get rid of! I have a hi def tv. I'm not so happy with the conversion to standard dvd due to compression with the 3ccd camcorder. I take lots home movies of parties and such and download and make copies for some relatives and all. My question is, would the picture quality of a hi def mini dv tape compressed to fit on a standard dvd going to look and better if I have a HI Def camcorder?
Also what could, would be the best software to burn to satard and double layer dvd for the both camcorders. I now have have convertxto dvd but even if I try to convert an hour long 14gb video to dual layer it still compresses to about 4.5 gigs! What's up? Thanks in advance