I just purchased the Sony HC-90 camera. So far, so good! The tape format is mini-dv and I'd like to transfer the tape to my computer (thinkpad). Unfortunately the Sony software is lousy, so does anyone recommend a good video editing software package for transferring high quality video to my computer so I can then edit and splice it.
Also, I am a complete newbie, so do I need a firewire to transfer video from my Sony HC-90 to my thinkpad or can I use USB and still get a quality transfer? My thinkpad does not have a firewire port.
Thank you so much for your time and help!
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The USB port on a camcorder is for stills and low quality, webcam type, video. Firewire (IEEE 1394, i-Link) is used to transfer good quality video in DV avi format. The transfer is just that, a bit for bit file copy from one storage medium, the tape, to your hard drive so the results will be the same no matter what software you use. Windows Movie Maker will do it or you might like to try WinDV which is reliable, simple and free. Once you have the footage on your hard drive, then you can start to edit it. You can use anything from Movie Maker upwards. Sony Vegas, Adobe Premiere, Mediastudio Pro, the list goes on. It all depends on how much editing you want to do, how clever you want to get and how much you are prepared to spend.
Thank you Richard_G for your very quick and detailed reply. I really appreciate it. I am off to buy a firewire card and cable! Happy New Year!