After searching the forum I saw some comments about HD space and realized that I only had 17GB free on my 300 GB drive that I usually use for PE. I have another internal drive (500 GB) that is mostly free (used to use it for backup purposes). So I'll try working off of that drive.
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Regardless, you'll need at least 30 gigs of free space on your C drive or it's not going to go, Stan.
But you can certainly keep your video and project files on your second drive. Just make sure it's formatted NTFS, not FAT32, as they come from the factory.
The bigger challenge, however, is that hi-def video editing wasn't introduced to the program until version 4 -- so version 2 isn't going to work. In fact, if you're going to edit video from that Nikon, I'd recommend you upgrade to version 9. It's the only version that's capable of editing DSLR video natively.
Thanks for the tips. I'd be happy to upgrade to PE9 if it will work on my system. I'd also be happy to add another 1 GB of RAM (I think the max my board can hold is 3). In the past my computer store (that built my PC) has discouraged me from buying more RAM because they don't think another 1 GB will make a big difference in my performance. I should also be able to free up some space on my c drive (presently have 21 GB free on a 74GB drive.).
Bottom line - if I have the recommended harddrive space - do you think I can adequately use PE9 for HD editing on my system? If so, I'll upgrade this week.
(one thing I didn't mention. Before I started my first real HD editing project (~12GB of MOV files) I did a few test runs (1-3 minute clips) from the Nikon and PE2 worked fine. It was only when I transferred my 12GB of vacation footage that things bogged down. So the real change was nearly maxing out my video storage harddrive and having a bigger PE project).
FYI - rendering has just completed and the timeline now plays smoothly in PE2.
The displayed video quality has some artefacts - I don't know the jargon - but there are some flashes and things that look similar to what I rememberi seeing sometimes on TV when someone has striped clothing and it kind of flashes. Later this week I'll do a test export / DVD just to see what final video quality will be (before i do any actual editing - thus far I merely added about 15 minutes of files with no editing done).
As mentioned - I'd be happy to go to PE9 if it is functional on my system.
(I don't want to buy a new PC just to use PE9 - that's one reason why I've stayed with PE2 for so long - my hardware and software specs all matched. But the HD videocamera has changed the equation.)
My new Nikon P500 is not a DSLR camera.
It save files in the MOV format.
Does that make a difference in which version of PE will work with this camera?
I did a test export to an AVI file overnight and it looks ok (720x480 was only option available). Exporting to MPG or MOV failed (PE2 crashed).
So it does look like it may be possible to use PE2 to some extent to process these files.
Certainly not retaining full HD quality though.
I wouldn't recommend Premiere Elements 9 for you for a couple of reasons:
1) Your system is borderline for version 9. You will probably not be happy with its performance. Particularly if you have a laptop.
2) You camera is a CoolPix rather than a DSLR -- so, even with version 9, you'll be continually rendering your video as you work. Which can get old very fast.
You may want to check out a program called Quicktime Pro. It's available for $29 from Apple. It's an ideal program for working with Quicktime (MOV) video, especially from still cameras. It's, of course, not the editor Premiere Elements is -- but it can do some basic editing.
I'm sorry but, if you're serious about video editing with Premiere Elements, you'll likely need to upgrade your computer and your camcorder. (Or at least pick up a more traditional camcorder. Used miniDVs can be had on Amazon and eBay for as little as $100, and they make the ideal sources for standard def video.)
Thanks for the advice about PE9 and my system (a once powerhouse desktop PC that I got explicitly for video editing 5-6 years ago). I am hoping to wait until my PC dies a natural death before replacing it. I have tried very hard not to get into the 'upgrade circle' of constantly replacing things that are still working. I try to wait until my hardware actually dies (like my Sony miniDV camcorder and Olympus camera just did) before replacing them.
I don't plan on using a separate videocamera any longer. My interest in videos is exclusively recording family events and I never liked lugging around a still camera and a video camera. My initial impression of the Nikon is that it is an adequate videocamera for my purposes. I absolutely love the convenience of simply pushing a button to convert a still camera to a videocamera. It has some definite limitations (audio noise from poorly positioned microphone and poor battery life in video mode) but I think I can live with that. The video quality is wonderful. It is wonderfully conveinent to simply drag and drop video file from camera memory card to the PC for editing.
I used to use Quicktime pro a million years ago before I bought PE1. I may revisit it depending on my success with Nero 10.
What I realized yesterday was that Nero 10 - which I use for DVD authoring can also handle HD editing. I dabbled with it last night and it was able to process a HD MOV file and export a HD file which looked great. But I haven't done any actual editing of my HD MOV files yet with Nero.
Prior to getting my Nikon, my practice was to do all of my 'complicated' editing with PE2 and I used Nero for authoring the DVD or for really simply video editing tasks. I found that while Nero wasn't nearly as sophisticated as PE, it was so much faster that I would use it for really simple jobs and use PE for more complicated jobs. Now that I need HD editing (which PE2 can't do) I'll see how much editing I can actually do with Nero 10. So hopefully, I already have the tools to edit the HD files on my current PC. When my PC eventually dies, and I replace it with another powerhouse - I'll revisit PE 9 (or 10 or 11...)
Thanks again for the info.
If you built that system well, it just might never die. I still have three computers back, that were my workstations over about 10 years. Each stiill runs well, though each is also horribly underpowered by even today's laptop standards. One is running NT-4, and the other Win2K. Strong as bulls, but... considering that HDD's were about 32MB max, processors were 1/100th of what they are today and the various OS's are now about 5 upgrades behind, they are almost useless. I keep them around, for some legacy hardware, that will not connect to my newer machines.
Also, prices continue to fall. Four years ago, I bought the ultimate laptop. Today, I am looking to replace it. For about US$ 1800 less, I can get a laptop that is perhaps 120% faster, with more HDD space. Technology improvements are not bad things.
Most of all, enjoy your editing and your authoring,