External video capture devices vs. Internal ones

Discussion in 'Computers' started by anthony_b, Feb 21, 2004.

  1. anthony_b

    anthony_b Screenwriter

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  2. Ken Chan

    Ken Chan Producer

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    In general, there is the simple practical matter of having to pop open the box and have a spare slot for the internal card. There is a slight chance of some hardware conflict for whatever particular combination of cards you have. USB and FireWire are designed to have a bunch of things plugged in, so not only is it more convenient, the odds of conflict are even lower.

    External devices often require their own power supply, usually in the form of some transformer brick that you don't have room for.

    For video capture in particular, you're probably best off using FireWire, and that is an external connection in most cases. There's support in the OS, support in most apps, it's a format designed for editing, and it's pretty much plug&play. For converting analog, there are external DV converters that pretty much "just work". If you don't have a FireWire port, you should get one; cards are $20, and you can plug in drives and cameras and other gizmos.

    That ADS device captures analog video and converts it to MPEG in the box before sending it through USB. MPEG is not intended for editing, and you have no control over the encoding. So the ADS is convenient, but not flexible.
     
  3. anthony_b

    anthony_b Screenwriter

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    Ken, thanks for the reply. But in reference to the above quote I'm assuming you ment to say that firewire cards are mostly internal, such as the $20 firewire card ?.

    Aside from physical inconveniances, are there any picture quality differeces between extenal and internal devices ?

    I'll be using MiniDV (FIREWIRE),8MM and VHS(both analog) for DVD conversion.
    So, I was thinking of getting a firewire card for my DV and an external device from ADS for my analog devices.
     
  4. Ken Chan

    Ken Chan Producer

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    All FireWire cards are internal [​IMG] Some motherboards have support built-in, just like USB. If you upgrade in the near future, it would be something to look for.

    There are all sorts of quality differences, but they don't necessarily have anything to do with whether they are external or internal.

    If you get an external DV converter, then all of your analog video would come in as DV. This would simplify your DVD conversion, since your workflow would be the same no matter what the original video source is.
     

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