MiniDV quality and DVD recorder

Discussion in 'Video Cameras' started by John, Aug 22, 2005.

  1. John

    John Guest

    I'm very new to all this and I can't find an FAQ for this group so I
    apologise if this question has been asked before. I've just bought a Sony
    HC22E MiniDV camcorder and I'll be using a Firewire cable to connect the DV
    output of the camcorder to the DV input of my stand-alone DVD recorder so
    that I can put my movies onto DVD.

    My DVD recorder (a Philips DVDR725H) will allow me to record in various
    qualities - M1 which is the highest quality and allows up to 1 hour of
    recording on a standard disc, down to the lowest quality - M8 - which allows
    up to 8 hours on a disc. I've been led to believe that M4 is better than the
    quality of VHS and M3 roughly equates to S-VHS so on that scale, what
    quality is MiniDV and what should I set the recording quality of the DVD
    recorder to?


    John, Aug 22, 2005
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  2. I would record at M1 ( one hour to a dvd ) that way you have highest
    quality possible.

    Blank dvd's are not expensive and i see no point in not recording best
    Gary MacKenzie
    Audio Visual Technician / Video Editor
    gary mackenzie, Aug 22, 2005
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  3. John

    John Russell Guest

    There is no DVD-video compatible MPEG2 standard to match DV. Your trying to
    cram 13gb per hr onto a 4.3 gb disk. You can store DV-AVI files as data on a
    DVD, all 20mins of it!
    You have to accept that you will lose some clarity converting to DVD-video,
    but if your happy with movies on DVD you should be OK.
    John Russell, Aug 22, 2005
  4. John

    John Guest

    Thanks for your replies Gary and John. I'm putting the movies on DVD because
    no-one else in the family has any equipment capable of playing MiniDV tapes
    but they all have DVD players so they can all have their own copies.


    John, Aug 22, 2005
  5. John

    John Russell Guest

    I'm not knocking it. Thats how I show my Videos. Slap in your DVD and away
    you go. Connecting up your DV camcorder to the TV is too much like setting
    up an old 8mm Home Movie set up.

    I think it's presumptious to assume people want to watch your videos by
    having your camcorder already set up. Much bettter to wait for an opportune
    moment to ask everyone if they'd like to see one, and slam in the disk.
    John Russell, Aug 22, 2005
  6. John

    G Hardy Guest

    As a general rule, if you're planning to put your DVDs out into the wide
    world, you should keep the bitrate as low as quality will allow, as that
    will result in best compatibility. Recording at "M1" will yield a DVDR at
    the highest bitrate that's allowed for DVDs, but such a high bitrate can
    cause problems on many older players, and even some new ones.

    Your source is DV material, which has already been compressed somewhat, so
    you'll see compression artefacts anyway. It very much depends on the nature
    of the footage, but a ballpark figure of 6 to 6.5 mbps is a good enough DVD
    bitrate for DV-sourced material. If you drop much below 5 you will start to
    see artefacts from the recompression (don't get me wrong - recompression
    always introduces some artefacts - it's just that this is the level below
    which they become noticeable).

    Your M2 setting is the equivalent of 5mbps, so you're on the "cusp" - If you
    have a lot of tripod shots with little action on them (e.g. wedding, school
    play) you'll probably be OK. If you've got lots of motion, especially
    "random" motion such as confetti, waterfalls, snow/rain and trees blowing in
    the wind, you'll start to see artefacts.

    Ideally, you could do with something halfway between M1 and M2. DVD media is
    cheap - try recording some DV footage using M1 and M2 compression, and see
    if you can tell the difference between them during playback. If you're up
    for the experiment, try the same footage at M3, M4, M6 and M8 too and see at
    what level you notice the drop in quality.

    Such an experiment will cost £1.20 because you can get super-cheapo discs
    for evaluating the recorder. When it comes to day-to-day usage, don't use
    quite such cheap discs.
    G Hardy, Aug 22, 2005
  7. John

    John Guest

    Thanks very much G. I'll definitely do some experimenting and see what
    happens :eek:)

    John, Aug 23, 2005
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