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  1. Member
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    I have a new computer that has a ton of USB ports and 4 eSATA ports. I understand that eSATA has a much faster transfer rate than USB 2.0 so I thought that it would be a great way to capture some old video from my Hi8 camcorder but I can't seem to find anything for eSATA.

    There are a ton of USB capturing devices but I've heard mixed reviews capturing through USB.

    Has anyone heard of a way to capture through eSATA?
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  2. Member
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    this is a question i wanna know also...it would be a much faster way to process or capture video...i hope they come up with a way for this to work...imagine 60+mb's per second transfer speed over 22
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  3. aBigMeanie aedipuss's Avatar
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    no. firewire would be the other option for video devices, esata is just for hard drives. usb 3.0 is out and will become the norm in a couple years.
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  4. Member edDV's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Moontrash View Post
    this is a question i wanna know also...it would be a much faster way to process or capture video...i hope they come up with a way for this to work...imagine 60+mb's per second transfer speed over 22
    eSATA is optimized for hardware disk control. The capture device would look like a hard drive to the computer.

    Many high end camcorders interface this way since they have internal flash or hard drives. All use USB or Firewire. It is a just a matter of time before someone adds an eSATA interface. But USB2 is fast enough for even 100 Mb/s AVC-Intra at 1x speed. The main benefit would be faster than real time file transfer.

    When you start to talk about uncompressed standard def stream capture, USB2 is on the edge with little safety factor for any glitches at the computer end. We have been discussing the USB ATI 650/750 in this context. 800Mb/s Firewire would be better. Better still would be the internal PCIe version of the card. Broadcast devices use the SDI interface for uncompressed interface*. eSATA is not designed for direct stream capture from an analog to digital capture device. The device would need an internal flash or hard drive.

    High definition uncompressed capture requires SDI or HDMI.


    * SDI (SMPTE 259M/292M) has fast transfer and can run hundreds of feet. USB2/Firewire/eSATA/HDMI are all designed for short 10-25 ft (2-4m) ranges
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  5. Hi8 can only be captured in realtime as the camcorder plays the tape. It doesn't matter how fast the transfer mechanism runs, as long as it's fast enough. USB2 is sufficient for SD YUY2 without compression. Stepping up to eSATA would gain you nothing. HD, of course, is another story.
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  6. Member edDV's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by jagabo View Post
    ...USB2 is sufficient for SD YUY2 without compression...
    Agreed.

    The safety concern is on the computer side. Capture is a data stream process not a file transfer. As such it is susceptible to data loss (pixels, lines, fields, frames).

    USB2 stream transfer is a software process that can be interrupted. The data flow to hard disk requires dedicated possession of the drive. Both are susceptible to interrupt particularly in a single drive laptop type environment.

    This is less an issue on a desktop computer with a separate hard drive dedicated to capture. PCI bus mastering allows dedicated assignment of a drive to a capture process while the OS and other processes share the OS drive.
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  7. Member
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    HD transfer from a newer HD camcorder is what i was wondering about.

    When you start to talk about uncompressed standard def stream capture, USB2 is on the edge with little safety factor for any glitches at the computer end.
    this is why i wondered about eSata...usb 2 is definitely right on the edge of transfer speeds and if your pc has a myriad of things running while your capturing, any hiccup could or may cause an issue with the stream/capture and you'd have to start over

    I'm hoping, if it hasn't already happened, that new HD camcorders (consumer/prosumer) will have SSD's in its place over say tape or a spinning hard drive. I prefer tape over hard drive camcorders(my panasonic gs300 has been fantatstic in terms of quality) but maybe, just maybe, the newer HD camcorder would have a RAW transfer to the SSD instead of beng encoded on the fly(which i don't care for).

    I've been reading quite a lot of your comments/posts on HD camcorders and speeds/resolutions edDV and i'm still a bit confused on a few things. The main reason I haven't jumped ship from my regular MiniDV to an HD camcorder is I haven't learned all i need to know to get a seamless transition into it...i.e...i can just record then plug it in and go and get true HD or at the very least, good enough hd resolution...HD seems a little more complicated than the dvd standard ever was
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  8. Member
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    Originally Posted by edDV View Post
    Originally Posted by jagabo View Post
    ...USB2 is sufficient for SD YUY2 without compression...
    Agreed.

    The safety concern is on the computer side. Capture is a data stream process not a file transfer. As such it is susceptible to data loss (pixels, lines, fields, frames).

    USB2 stream transfer is a software process that can be interrupted. The data flow to hard disk requires dedicated possession of the drive. Both are susceptible to interrupt particularly in a single drive laptop type environment.

    This is less an issue on a desktop computer with a separate hard drive dedicated to capture. PCI bus mastering allows dedicated assignment of a drive to a capture process while the OS and other processes share the OS drive.
    I see your point about how it's not a file transfer. So with my new system with Windows 7 64 Bit, Intel i5 750, I should be OK using a USB device to capture my Hi8 video?

    I was having a lot of issues with USB transfer on my old system and the video clips from my wife's digital camera would sometimes be corrupted but this is a file transfer so I guess you cannot compare to the Hi8.
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  9. Member edDV's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Moontrash View Post
    HD transfer from a newer HD camcorder is what i was wondering about.

    When you start to talk about uncompressed standard def stream capture, USB2 is on the edge with little safety factor for any glitches at the computer end.
    this is why i wondered about eSata...usb 2 is definitely right on the edge of transfer speeds and if your pc has a myriad of things running while your capturing, any hiccup could or may cause an issue with the stream/capture and you'd have to start over

    I'm hoping, if it hasn't already happened, that new HD camcorders (consumer/prosumer) will have SSD's in its place over say tape or a spinning hard drive. I prefer tape over hard drive camcorders(my panasonic gs300 has been fantatstic in terms of quality) but maybe, just maybe, the newer HD camcorder would have a RAW transfer to the SSD instead of beng encoded on the fly(which i don't care for).

    I've been reading quite a lot of your comments/posts on HD camcorders and speeds/resolutions edDV and i'm still a bit confused on a few things. The main reason I haven't jumped ship from my regular MiniDV to an HD camcorder is I haven't learned all i need to know to get a seamless transition into it...i.e...i can just record then plug it in and go and get true HD or at the very least, good enough hd resolution...HD seems a little more complicated than the dvd standard ever was

    All HD camcorders compress in the camera to a lower bit rate format. Some record as a compressed stream to tape (e.g. HDV, DVCPro, HDCAM), others record to a file using disc media (flash or hard drive).

    Data transfer of the recorded data to the computer can be done as a data stream or as a file transfer. All tape and most consumer formats transfer the data as a stream. Some use IEEE-1394, others use USB2. Flash RAM based models can also transfer data by physically reading the RAM module in a card reader.

    Higher end pro camcorders have an OS in the camcorder and can use external disk or network file transfer techniques. Eventually consumer camcorders will adopt a real OS.

    Some camcorders also allow live uncompressed streams over HDMI or SDI. In this case the computer can record the uncompressed stream using RAID disks. Uncompressed HD capture creates huge files.
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  10. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by edDV View Post
    Originally Posted by jagabo View Post
    ...USB2 is sufficient for SD YUY2 without compression...
    Agreed.
    The safety concern is on the computer side. Capture is a data stream process not a file transfer. As such it is susceptible to data loss (pixels, lines, fields, frames).
    USB2 stream transfer is a software process that can be interrupted. The data flow to hard disk requires dedicated possession of the drive. Both are susceptible to interrupt particularly in a single drive laptop type environment.
    This is less an issue on a desktop computer with a separate hard drive dedicated to capture. PCI bus mastering allows dedicated assignment of a drive to a capture process while the OS and other processes share the OS drive.
    I agree with this too, but I still suggest lossless writing (HuffYUV) through USB2 capture cards.
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  11. Member edDV's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by alandla View Post
    Originally Posted by edDV View Post
    Originally Posted by jagabo View Post
    ...USB2 is sufficient for SD YUY2 without compression...
    Agreed.

    The safety concern is on the computer side. Capture is a data stream process not a file transfer. As such it is susceptible to data loss (pixels, lines, fields, frames).

    USB2 stream transfer is a software process that can be interrupted. The data flow to hard disk requires dedicated possession of the drive. Both are susceptible to interrupt particularly in a single drive laptop type environment.

    This is less an issue on a desktop computer with a separate hard drive dedicated to capture. PCI bus mastering allows dedicated assignment of a drive to a capture process while the OS and other processes share the OS drive.
    I see your point about how it's not a file transfer. So with my new system with Windows 7 64 Bit, Intel i5 750, I should be OK using a USB device to capture my Hi8 video?
    If this is a desktop and you capture to a separate capture drive, then you are reasonably safe from data loss during capture.

    If this is a laptop with a single drive, then you should create a boot state with background processes turned off and refrain from other activity during capture.

    Originally Posted by alandla View Post
    I was having a lot of issues with USB transfer on my old system and the video clips from my wife's digital camera would sometimes be corrupted but this is a file transfer so I guess you cannot compare to the Hi8.
    Most consumer products (including digital cameras) lack an OS so the transfer process is not really a file copy. The file contents are streamed to the PC under control a USB driver and read into a file on the hard disk. So data loss can occur.

    A file copy under OS or a network file copy is a packet by packet transfer with error correction and verification. If a packet fails verification (and many do), a request is made to resend that packet. Only when all packets pass verification is the copy reported as complete.

    Consumer products do none of this. They just collect a data stream under control of the driver.

    Exception is when a flash card is read in a card reader. In that case the Windows Vista and later OS controls the file copy.
    Last edited by edDV; 13th Apr 2010 at 13:37.
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  12. Member edDV's Avatar
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    When Hi8 is captured uncompressed as 4:2:2 YUY2, the data rate is ~ 150-200 Mb/s plus audio. This rate is well within the capability of individual laptop components. This issue is assuring continuous assignment of those components.

    Most USB and Firewire capture devices will hardware encode in the device to DV, MPeg2 or even MPeg4. In that case the data rates for Hi8 are reduced to 3-30 Mb/s range. Uncompressed capture is better for post filtering.
    Last edited by edDV; 13th Apr 2010 at 13:41.
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  13. Member edDV's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
    Originally Posted by edDV View Post
    Originally Posted by jagabo View Post
    ...USB2 is sufficient for SD YUY2 without compression...
    Agreed.
    The safety concern is on the computer side. Capture is a data stream process not a file transfer. As such it is susceptible to data loss (pixels, lines, fields, frames).
    USB2 stream transfer is a software process that can be interrupted. The data flow to hard disk requires dedicated possession of the drive. Both are susceptible to interrupt particularly in a single drive laptop type environment.
    This is less an issue on a desktop computer with a separate hard drive dedicated to capture. PCI bus mastering allows dedicated assignment of a drive to a capture process while the OS and other processes share the OS drive.
    I agree with this too, but I still suggest lossless writing (HuffYUV) through USB2 capture cards.
    Problem is the full data rate comes over USB and then is data rate reduced to HuffYUV in the CPU. The ideal capture card might precompress to HuffYUV in hardware prior to USB transfer.
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  14. Member
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    man i'm even more confused lol. i so wanna go to an hd camcorder (consumer/prosumer) but this is makin my head hurt LOL
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  15. Originally Posted by edDV View Post
    Problem is the full data rate comes over USB and then is data rate reduced to HuffYUV in the CPU. The ideal capture card might precompress to HuffYUV in hardware prior to USB transfer.
    But in practice uncompressed YUY2 capture with software HuffYUV compression works fine on current machines as long as you're not doing something silly like defragmenting the drive your capturing to or trying to play games at the same time.
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  16. Member edDV's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Moontrash View Post
    man i'm even more confused lol. i so wanna go to an hd camcorder (consumer/prosumer) but this is makin my head hurt LOL
    The original topic was eSATA vs other interfaces for uncompressed SD capture.

    You brought up HD camcorders. These have a different set of issues. Uncompressed capture is impractical for most.

    The main issue with HD isn't capture but dealing with the compression and computation.

    What are your concerns?

    Originally Posted by Moontrash View Post
    ...The main reason I haven't jumped ship from my regular MiniDV to an HD camcorder is I haven't learned all i need to know to get a seamless transition into it...i.e...i can just record then plug it in and go and get true HD or at the very least, good enough hd resolution...HD seems a little more complicated than the dvd standard ever was
    Capture isn't a problem unless you are trying to do uncompressed.

    HDV is the same file size as DV but more compressed to MPeg2. HDV is captured over IEEE-1394 in a similar way to DV but currently is not OS native. You need an application to transfer HDV.

    AVCHD is either transferred via a proprietary USB2 driver, or read from flash media with a card reader.
    Last edited by edDV; 13th Apr 2010 at 14:46.
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