24 Replies Latest reply on Oct 20, 2009 9:28 PM by Michelmnr

    converting avi file to dv-avi

    Cheryl Breunig Level 1

      I am a recent convert from Pinnacle Sudio to Premiere Elements 7. I have avi files made in Pinnacle that I would like to bring into Premiere. From what I am reading, I need to first convert them to dv-avi files. Can anyone tell me how to do this? I made the files on a Windows XP computer using Pinnacle), my Premiere is on Vista Home Premium--if this helps :)

      Thanks much, Cheryl B.
        • 1. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
          Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional
          They may already be DV-AVIs, Cheryl, depending on the options you chose when outputting them. DV-AVIs are the universal language of PC-based video editors.

          The easiest way to find out what codec your video clip is using is to open the file in Windows Media Player and then go to the File menu and select Properties. The codecs for both the audio and video will be displayed there.
          • 2. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
            Cheryl Breunig Level 1
            Thanks, Steve

            I created these avi files in a very old version of Pinnacle, where dv.avi was not an option, only .avi. I tried just now to open the files to check in properties as you suggest, but my Widows XP shuts everything down with a "Data Execution Prevention" window. I can't even delete them. These files look like they are HUGE, I'm wondering if that is why XP is preventing me from doing anything with them. I better find out what is going on...any suggestions?

            Thanks much, Cheryl B.
            • 3. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
              Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional
              Download a program called VirtualDub (free from http://www.virtualdub.org). Open the AVI in that program and then do a Save As. The new AVI that VirtualDub creates will be a DV-AVI that should work perfectly in Premiere Elements.
              • 4. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                Cheryl Breunig Level 1
                Thanks again, Steve

                I tried to download virtual dub, but it does not run for me. I think I will just re-build my project in Premiere.

                I appreciate your time and effort on this.

                Cheryl B.
                • 5. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                  the_wine_snob Level 9

                  One more thing to try is to download G-Spot (www.headbands.com/gspot) and install this little freeware program. Open it, and drag one of your .AVI files to it. It will do several things:

                  1.) survey your system for all properly installed CODEC's
                  2.) tell you exactly which CODEC was used by Pinnacle and whether you have it properly installed
                  3.) allow you test your file. On the left-hand side of the G-Spot interface, you'll see some numbers. Number 1 checks the CODEC, number 2 will Render your file (or give you a useful error message) and number 3 will play your file in the little monitor window. Note, you will probably have to Render both the Video and the Audio.

                  If you get a message that you do not have the proper CODEC installed, it will give you the exact name of that CODEC. Google for that specific CODEC and download & install it. I only install CODEC's that are required, and shy away from the various CODEC-packs.

                  As to the size of your files, DV-AVI files are about 13GB/hour of Duration. They ARE large, but that is just the nature of the working with video.

                  If your AVI file is corrupt, you can download, install and use a freeware program, Digital Video Repair. It does a good job of re-indexing and fixing many glitches. It is not perfect, and files can be too corrupted to repair, but the program will tell you of this.

                  Good luck,

                  • 6. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                    Another option is try and load the AVI file into Windows Movie Maker (WMM).

                    WMM comes standard (free) with Vista.

                    If it loads and plays with WMM, then just Publish (export) the file as DV-AVI taking the standard defaults.

                    Typically if WMM can load and play it, then it will convert to DV-AVI and the converted file works very well with PE...
                    • 7. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                      the_wine_snob Level 9
                      The one caveat with using WMM is that it Exports to DV-AVI Type I. Some of these cause problems with Adobe NLE's. Some work fine. I find that PE handles more of these better than P-Pro. Still, I run these through DigitalMedia Converter (shareware) to get full DV-AVI Type II files.

                      One of the oft-seen problems with DV-AVI Type I files is with Audio sync.

                      • 8. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                        Level 1
                        Hi Cheryl, Please update your findings.

                        Beau geste.
                        • 9. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                          Cheryl Breunig Level 1
                          Good Morning Everyone

                          Thanks for the ideas. I am going to split my project into smaller pieces in Pinnacle (so my XP doesn't shut me down) then I will try to put the avi files through WMM and if that doesn't work, DigitalMediaConverter as kodebuster & Bill suggest.

                          Wish me luck, I'll keep you posted as I work on this over the next few days. Thanks again! Cheryl B.
                          • 10. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                            PeterFDuke Level 1
                            If the program is Pinnacle Studio, I bet the file is already DV-AVI. I mix and match between Premiere Elements and Studio all the time.
                            • 11. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                              Cheryl Breunig Level 1
                              Good news!

                              I split my project into a smaller pieces, tried one--AVI from Pinnacle Studio 9--directly into Premiere; one thru Windows Movie Maker--to convert to DV-AVI. I was able to bring both into Premiere.

                              I have not really started to work on this project within Premiere yet, so I don't know if there will be any differences between the two clips (quality, file size etc.) but I can work on that along the way.

                              In the end, I think making my files smaller enabled me to move them out of Pinnacle (and my XP computer) and into Premiere (on my Vista computer). Thank you for all of the suggestions. I have learned so much!

                              Thanks to everyone I'm smiling again :)
                              • 12. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                                Ed.Macke Level 3

                                I use Win XP to open large AVI files all the time. I've use Windows Media Player to play my 26GB (yes, 26 GB) wedding video.

                                I'm not saying that's not your issue here - it very well could be - just that Windows XP is perfectly capable of handling some very large files.

                                I think what I'm saying is that is probably more likely a codec or corrupted file issue - something like that - than a large file issue, and since fixing those problems might be easier and quicker than re-doing your project, maybe you might want to start with those things first. Just a suggestion.

                                One other oddball thought: I ran into a weird issue once with Win XP blowing up every time I tried to open a particular AVI, or even using Explorer to display the directory where the AVI resided.

                                Turns out is was an issue with Windows trying to display a thumbnail of the file. Turning off thumbnails for videos solved the problem (see this link: http://www.mydigitallife.info/2008/03/17/how-to-enable-or-disable-media-and-video-thumbna il-preview-in-windows-xp). The file worked fine in Premiere.
                                • 13. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                                  Hi Cheryl, Kodebuster & Bill

                                  Do i need to purchase DigitalMediaConverter or is it available for free??

                                  • 14. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                                    Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional
                                    Can't you just export the files from Pinnacle Studio as Dv-AVI files?
                                    • 15. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                                      the_wine_snob Level 9

                                      It's shareware, but there is/was a free time-limited trial. It's ~US$40 from Deskshare. There are some free ones, and many get great reviews - see the FAQ's at the top of the main page for some recs. I happened to have come across DMC years ago, and love it. I bought a copy for each machine and use it every other day. I tried a few other shareware programs, and none did the job as well as DMC. I have not experimented with freeware converters, 'cause DMC does what I need so well.

                                      Good luck,

                                      • 16. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                                        Level 1
                                        Bill H,

                                        An interesting observation on WMM and conversion to DV-AVI Type 1.

                                        I've been using WMM for an extended period for Mpeg2 to AVI conversion and have yet to experience any audio sync problems. Also PE4 seems very, very stable under WMM AVI.

                                        (But I've been around long enough to "never say never"...LOL.)

                                        In my situation my Sony Handycam (DVRDVD-305) has only two options for export to a PC, Mpeg2 via USB, or VOB's via it's internal Mini-DVD. I've never tried a capture via PE cause there was never a need.

                                        So I take the Mpeg2 route for export from my camera, rather than VOB which has it's own set of issues (as we are well aware).

                                        I'm assuming that running a DV-AVI Type 1 thru DigitalMedia to Type 2 will have little to no effect on quality. I make this statement cause I'm thinking a Type 1 is already in an un-compressed state, so converting to Type 2 should not further impact on the quality...
                                        • 17. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                                          the_wine_snob Level 9

                                          I've had many DV-AVI Type I's that did not exhibit a problem. However, enough have (and not just for me), that I now do it out of habit - it's become part of my workflow. Also, PE seems to do a much better job, than PrPro. That is the main reason, that I have PE, because it is more lenient, than its "big brother." Most of the issues that I have encountered have been with PrPro's handling of these. I do not know what is different "under the hood," but PE merrily Imports stuff that chokes PrPro.

                                          I've seen no problems, artifacts, degredation in quality, etc., with DMC, to date. I do try and keep conversions to a minimum, and have established workflows to maximize the final quality. Some sources require more work, than others, but if one has collected the "tools" and plans for the source files, one can do a lot with sub-optimal Assets.

                                          In most workflows, it's about the "tools," the Assets, and how one likes to work. Many use other conversion programs, with no problems and great results. They have standardized on their particular workflow, as I have mine.

                                          As for the DV-AVI, there IS compression, albeit much, much less than MPEG-2, but the quality, judged on good playback equipment, is beyond my ability to detect it. It can be measured, but if I can't see it in the final, that is good enough for me.

                                          There are also other NLE's, that use "smart rendering" for existing MPEG-2 Assets. I have not explored any, so cannot comment on how well, or poorly, they perform. There are many recs. for these around the fora, so one might prove to be better, than PE for that task.

                                          As most of my Assets are Captured in PrPro from tape, it works beautifully for me. Still, clients will come up with the darnedest CODEC's and expect miracles. With the popularity of HDD cameras, I would almost expect to see PE incorporate a "smart rendering" workflow via a preset. Because of its great interface (which I am still learning, coming from PrPro), I think that would separate it from many of the competition. It'll all be based on market share.

                                          • 18. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                                            Michelmnr Level 1

                                            Thank Guys, Came to this thread because I have a similar problem with a little Canon (S3IS) still camera. Half my clips are chocking P Pro.? Why some would work and other not? I remember in the past using window M maker which is a bit of a pain, but beggars can't be choosers, as it goes.

                                            So it seems that I have a little work to do with codecs, G-spot etc.!

                                            I needed to take clips of a photo Album and also of pics  that will go into albums and thought filming them would be easier and quicker than scan or still shots...But it's not and I can't work out how to deal with light reflection, I really should put this in another thread.

                                            • 19. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                                              Michelmnr Level 1

                                              Well here we are I have been through my files with Gspot, I get "File length correct" (avi v 1.0 -I guess it's type 1) Audio "No Codec Required" status Codec MJPG "Codec(s) are installed".  Yet as I said many of these files are bringing an error (Wrong or Corrupted) When  imported in PP cs2?

                                              I was going to get a large SD card for this camera and use it for my next Holiday, but perhaps I should think of something different!


                                              • 20. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                                                Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional

                                                As we say in the FAQs to the right of this forum, in order to use video from a still camera in Premiere Elements, you must first use Windows MovieMaker to convert it to a DV-AVI.


                                                • 21. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                                                  A.T. Romano Level 7



                                                  I am coming into this thread a little late. It looks like your video is MotionJPEG. Do you have a LEAD or Morgan codec installed on your computer? If not, I would look into Morgan codec. If that does not remedy the situation, then....


                                                  In the previous remarks about using Windows Movie Maker to convert your file to DV AVI, a possible issue with Type I and Type II Microsoft DV AVI was raised. If that ever should be an issue, the free download of DVDate can do the job of converting the Type I to Type II...quick, easy, and free.


                                                  Did you try Windows Movie Maker yet and does it support your video format? It should. If not, we need to take a second look at your video format.


                                                  • 22. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                                                    Michelmnr Level 1

                                                    Thank you ATR, Yes it says MJPEG in Gspot, I must confess I have no idea how to tell or to find out if I have Morgan or other codec installed, I'm just using XP pro!

                                                    I also got into this forum, not realising it's really a PE forum. I have PE but never use it (I have the feeling I've heard that PE and PP aren't all that compatible with each other ( I can't remember the direction). I feel PP2 is daunting enough although PE supposes to more for the like of myself! It sounds like DVDate may be a better proposition than WMM and so would end up with the right files in a directory. Will have to give it a go. 

                                                    You live and sometimes learn  MM

                                                    • 23. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                                                      the_wine_snob Level 9
                                                      I must confess I have no idea how to tell or to find out if I have Morgan or other codec installed, I'm just using XP pro!


                                                      Again, G-Spot to the rescue. Look under Tables>Video CODEC's, to see what is installed on your system. Beware: G-Spot will report errors with the Adobe MainConcept CODEC's, but that is because Adobe "hides" them, to keep other programs from overwriting them and really messing things up.


                                                      Good luck,




                                                      BTW - I use PrPro for most of my editing, but also have PrE 4, for the things that it does better.

                                                      • 24. Re: converting avi file to dv-avi
                                                        Michelmnr Level 1

                                                        Thank you Bill, I though Gspot only looked at what is on a specific file - I just converted all my little files to Type 2 with DVDATE and Certainly PP2 is a lot happier with this. before it gave me out of memory warning and ended up chocking. I only did a quick job just to see (my clips are rubbish anyway I could not focus properly on the photos and got a lot of glare.
                                                        Thanks again