Hi everyone. I have some HD DVR programming that cannot be purchased whether it be on Blu Ray Dics/Standard DVD or otherwise. Obviously, I'd love to keep these programs. As a result, I have very little free space in which to work with on the DVR. Also, should my set-top box/DVR ever require replacement, I loose it all. I know I could record this stuff on analog using a VCR but extremely poor video quality. I currently am using the Fios Motorola HD DVR QIP 7216 1 that broadcasts in 1080i. I'm told that most likely the HDMI cable automatically gets encrypted for viewing purposes only and may not capture. But using Component (red, blue and green cables/red and white audio cables w/rca plugs) cabling would be possible. My intention, if possible, would be to capture to PC and burn captured HD programming from the mentioned DVR onto a Blu Ray disc with hopefully only a minimal loss of video quality.
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Thread: Capturing DVR HD Programming
I recently had to sort out capturing programs from my HD-DVR to burn to DVD/Blu-Ray. First I tried using HDMI, but could not get a signal to the pc due to encryption. My only option, if I wanted to capture HD, was to use the component connections for the video and the RCA connections for the audio. So, I connected the HD-DVR to my Blackmagic Intensity Pro capture card and capturing works flawlessly. The Intensity captures using an AVI Motion JPEG codec, and when I import the file into Premiere to edit out commercials, the video scrubbing is realy smooth.
So component and rca are probably your best options.
Brianiac thanks for your reply. I posted a reply earlier to yours but for some reason, it didn't post. I am very new at this. I was just curious how your play-back videos appear in quality. Would you compare them to HD or VCR quality? And, are you burning (to Blu-Ray or Standard DVD) or just storing them on and playing them from your PC? Thanks again!
The video quality looks pretty good, considering that in the original video you can see all kinds of compression artifacts. When I capture the video to the computer form the HD-DVR, I have to press the play button on the HD-DVR remote and the record button on the Intensity capture module. So it's not a capture in the usual sense. The quality of the captured video is HD quality, albeit with the compression artifacts already mentioned.
I edit the HD video to remove the commercials, then I burn to DVD. Blu-ray discs are still too expensive and not everyone has a blu-ray player yet.
The Blackmagic Intensity Pro is a fine capture device, but Motion JPEG AVI files require a fair amount of disk space to store. Of course, after editing one could re-encode these files to something else at very high quality, but re-encoding takes time.
There are some other good options too, Hauppauge makes two capture devices (the Hauppauge HD-PVR and the Hauppauge Colossus) that capture from Component video and optical S/PDIF audio, as H.264 .ts files with AC-3 audio. These reportedly ignore analog copy protection. On the minus side, quality is not as good as what is possible with the Blackmagic Intensity Pro because two-pass encoding isn't possible for hardware encoders, and third-party paid editors are more or less a necessity for editing the .ts capture files from these devices. On the plus side, the captured files take less space, and they are already in H.264 format if that is what you want in the end.
Blu-ray burners are coming down in price and so is good Blu-Ray media. A nice burner from Pioneer currently costs between $70 and $90. Regular Verbatim BD-R media (not LTH) costs around $1.25, and holds 25GB of data. Verbatim DVD+R DL media costs about the same and holds 8GB of data.
Last edited by usually_quiet; 22nd Feb 2013 at 11:32.
Usually_quiet is quite correct about file sizes being rather large. An approximately 1 hour and 5 minute capture in 720P 59.94 setting takes up about 22 GB. And because the files are so large, I usually delete the original capture after having created a DVD ISO.
Yes, Blu-ray burners and media are coming down in price. But if someone wants to borrow something I have done, odds are they do not have a Blu-ray player. Maybe they will own a PS3, but almost always they will have a DVD player.
Last year I bought a BD burner and my family now has inexpensive (well under $100) players that play data files thanks to generous discounts offered by retailers at Christmas time. I have to say I don't mind not doing the extra work associated with putting high-definition programming on DVDs.
I use the Hauppauge Colossus for this kind of thing just as unusually_quiet describes and I've been ecstatic with it. I just use high bit rate (10000 Kbps) captures for stuff like VHS tapes or laserdiscs and re-encode to MPEG-2 for DVD from that. I've done some TV captures right from the cable company PVR via component just like described. I can't tell any difference between it and the source. Maybe the Black Magic is better, but for it's price a lot of us here are really happy with the Colossus or it's sisters, the HD PVR boxes they make.
Well after careful consideration, all this stuff including file-type conversions, etc., is seeming awe-fully complicated. If it were to simplify things, I'm re-considering not using a Blu-Ray burner given the consistent errors occurring during the burning process therefore wasting blank BD discs unless of course you're using RW's. But then there's also the concern that my Blu-Ray player may not read certain file types, as it already can't read MP3's even though it states it can in the manual. My newer idea would be to use my back-up PC as a designated capturing/storage source, constantly leaving it connected to the set-top box/dvr and TV for easy and hopefully user friendly access. I'm not going to concern myself with trying to strip encrypted HDMI which doesn't seem likely anyway, but to use component cabling which in my opinion gives only a negligible lost of picture quality. I know I'd still need a capture card and eventually an external hard-drive for storage space given that these hi-def files take up lots of space. I'd love any input to this idea and appreciate all the input so far. I'm hopeful this will be a good way to go with minimal to do.
Thank you all,