10 Replies Latest reply: Jan 11, 2012 11:03 PM by elledecker RSS

    Capturing input video from a DV camera

    Ted Smith Community Member

      I found that my old Sony HC90 DV camera makes a good video to Digital converter so I can make DVDs of my old family VHS tapes made over 15 years ago on a video only camera.


      I set it up using firewire so that the VCR video is visible on the camera viewfinder and therefore also on the capture preview window of PE9.


      As soon as I select Capture, the tape starts playing and cuts out the input VCR video.

      If  I stop the tape playing on the camera, the PE9 capture also stops.


      This means I cant capture any input video without the transport rolling.


      If I record it all on camera tape I can replay this and capture it OK but everything will then take twice as long to do


      Is there any way I can use the PE capture feature without it starting the tape transport as well so I can capture direct from VCR to Computer?


      Alternately is there any other (hopefully free) capture program that doesnt also control the camera transport so I can just capture the video?

        • 1. Re: Capturing input video from a DV camera
          Steve Grisetti MVP

          What you're using is called a pass-through, Ted, and it's a great way to digitize video, if your camcorder includes this feature.


          Unfortunately, you can't control you camcorders from Premiere Elements if you're using a pass-through, since the source camcorder isn't connected directly to your computer.


          But otherwise, it sounds like you're doing everything right!

          • 2. Re: Capturing input video from a DV camera
            Ted Smith Community Member

            Yes, it obviously has pass thru but the trouble is that PE9 DOES control the transport. I cant stop it from doing this and it wont capture unless the transport is running.


            Starting the capture runs the camera and stopping the transport on the camera also shuts down capture!


            I tried PowerDVD and it does the same so I'm looking at others like WinDV that dont have a transport control.

            • 3. Re: Capturing input video from a DV camera
              the_wine_snob Community Member



              When using the camera in pass-through, you will not want a tape in that miniDV camera, only the composite feed to it.


              As mentioned, you will have no control over the VHS deck, as it only has the composite cables, which are one-way communication. I do similar with my A-D bridge. I start the Capture with my mouse, and immediately start playback with my deck's remote. With practice, there will be but 30 - 60 Frames of black at the beginning of that Capture, that are easily Cut from the Clip. That little lag also allows the deck to get up to speed too.


              Without a tape in the camera, you should be able to do the Capture, with but a bit of mouse & button pressing. I keep the remote in my left hand, and the mouse in my right.


              Good luck,




              PS - I would also hook the camera to the AC mains, or have a freshly charged battery.

              • 4. Re: Capturing input video from a DV camera
                Ted Smith Community Member

                Yes but PE9 is insisting that I must have a tape playing in the camera.

                If I dont have a mini tape in the camera, when I select "Capture" it asks for a tape to be inserted in the camera. PE has a mind of it's own -again!


                This has nothing to do with the VHS transport.


                I tried the free WINDv program and it works perfectly because it has a tick box to disable transport control.


                Picture quality is actually slightly better than PE9 (Video from an old 1992 Panasonic video camera!)


                The Sony Camera settings that work in pass thru are


                AV+DV OUT  = on

                DISP OUT     = LCD panel


                Various posts say using a Mini DV camera is better than using standard alone converters because the AVI construction and compression is usually better.

                • 5. Re: Capturing input video from a DV camera
                  Steve Grisetti MVP

                  You just need to turn off the Device Control for the capture, Ted. Then you'll be able to capture your pass-through video without a tape in your miniDV.

                  • 6. Re: Capturing input video from a DV camera
                    Ted Smith Community Member

                    Sorry but that was the first question I asked!

                    Where can I "turn off" device control? I cant see it anywhere.


                    I also tried a free prog called CaptureFlux

                    It does an much better job than WINDV in handling tape drop outs and the occasional instability of my old tapes.


                    Not a flicker in a 1 hour video of my son's wedding recorded in 1987

                    I think it is a race against time to get the old stuff converted seeing you can't buy VCR players here any longer.

                    • 7. Re: Capturing input video from a DV camera
                      Robert J. Johnston Community Member

                      This is in 10 but should be same in 9. Edit > Preferences > Device Control > Devices: None.

                      • 8. Re: Capturing input video from a DV camera

                        Ted, is your OS Windows 7? (I'm curious to know if the other program you tried, CaptureFlux, worked in it). Also, are you using FireWire? or USB port?

                        • 9. Re: Capturing input video from a DV camera
                          Ted Smith Community Member

                          Yes, OS is Windows7 64bit (i7 proc)

                          Works perfectly.

                          I am using firewire from my old Sony Handycam HC90. They end up saved as AVI files.

                          USB2 should be fast enough as 3 hours of AVCHD files transfer in much less than 3 hours and HD AVCHD seems about the same file size as SD AVI.(but maybe not)


                          PE creates a flicker with bad tape drop outs whereas captureflex hides them (probably by inserting pixels from previopus frames )?

                          • 10. Re: Capturing input video from a DV camera
                            elledecker Community Member

                            Thank you!


                            I think I will give it a try. I found a web page that seems to be the owners:  http://paul.glagla.free.fr/captureflux_en.htm  does that look like the correct page to you? His latest version is 6.0, and looks like it was done in 2008. Do you know of a more recent version?


                            I'm also trying to find a fire wire card for my computer (Dell XPS 8300)


                            I don't understand why they wouldn't include the firewire card, considering this is a great computer for video editing. I guess most people are using their computers for gaming and streaming and watching DVDs, not making them.


                            I have been able to import using PE10, but it seems a little glitchy.


                            I'm also going to try an updated version of the motionDV studio that came with my Panasonic.


                            Thanks again--