As you may know from an earlier post this year, I purchased a MiniDV camcorder. I love the camcorder, it works great. However, how do you go about managing all this video? It’s a big pain in the butt.
Well, here are the problems I’ve had and how I solved them.
My first general premise is that at some point I will do some real video editing. Even if I didn’t, I still want to archive all of the raw footage in a DVD compliant format, with the date and time in tact. There are a ton of programs out there that will suck off the video from your camera and save it on your hard disk. There is only one that I have found that will store the files based on the date and time the video was taken. This is where WinDV comes in.
WinDV is a free, dirt simple program that will look at the time stamp on your DV tape and name the AVI file based on that time stamp. It even allows you to specify the exact date format you want and you can also specify a threshold for when it moves to the next file.
So, WinDV is the first step in my process. So, now I’ve got a hundred AVI files sitting on my hard drive. And they’re HUGE. I need to convert them to an mpeg to get the size down.
This brings me to my next general premise. Video conversion is a big pain in the butt. There are SO many options and SO many programs out there to accomplish this. Many of them do a very poor job at conversion or the user interface. After wasting a LOT of time, I have finally settled on TMPGEnc to do the conversion. This seems to give me the best output and a pretty good user interface. However, there is one major flaw in the user interface and it has to do with the batch conversion. So, I’ve created a VB script to help get over this issue. This is a whole separate blog entry in itself.
Now, assuming that my first premise is correct, I have been using Pinnacle Studio 9 Plus for my video editing. I can’t say that I’ve used much of anything else, but it does the job nicely. It has a lot of features, plenty more then I will ever need for editing my home videos.