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  1. Occasional user
    Join Date: Jul 2014
    Location: Orlando, FL
    Search Comp PM
    I have had a long hiatus from video capturing. I used to do it with Mini-DV camcorders, going from the video source through Firewire to a computer to capture as Digital AVI, then editing the video to work.

    Well, I've lost the camcorders during a move, and while I can try to buy one later on, I'd like to know about straight video captures with PCI or PCI-E cards. I don't know the current tech, so suggestions for cards would be welcome.

    My intention is to capture from off-air digital tuner to a hard drive in AVI for editing later.

    I'd like:

    1) A PCI or PCI-E card that would take analog video and audio in, and capture straight to a hard drive.

    2) I'd really like a capture card that can also capture the vertical interval captioning, so I don't have to write my own closed captions.

    3) I'd like a system that will not lose audio sync. I know the camcorder route works, but hasn't anyone created a capture card that will stay in audio sync yet?

    4) If speed is of the essence, I'd be willing to build a quad core with a bunch of memory, IF that helps the capture card work.

    And if anyone has a forum or posts discussing this stuff on videohelp.com, please send me the link. I looked around and it looks like everyone's given up on hardware discussions.
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  2. Member
    Join Date: Aug 2006
    Location: United States
    Search Comp PM
    Originally Posted by Thomas Reed View Post
    My intention is to capture from off-air digital tuner to a hard drive in AVI for editing later.
    Is it a digital tuner or a PVR? If this box doesn't record, is there some reason why you can't or don't want to use a TV tuner card for this? You won't get better quality by recording a lossless avi than you will get by recording the broadcast stream as is.
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  3. Originally Posted by Thomas Reed View Post
    My intention is to capture from off-air digital tuner
    Get a capture device with an ATSC tuner and it can "download" the over-the-air transport stream. No need for a lossy digital to analog to digital conversion.
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  4. Occasional user
    Join Date: Jul 2014
    Location: Orlando, FL
    Search Comp PM
    To usually_quiet and jagabo...I don't trust the teeny little tuners put in video cards. I would rather accept a lossy environment from digital>analog>digital conversion than have to put up with the poor reception performance of a PC tuner card. Remember that those tuners are already in a polluted environment of digital signals inside the PC case. Mounting the tuner several feet from the PC inside a steel grounded case would be needed to make a teeny-tiny tin box work.

    I am also interested in capturing video streams from sources such as camcorders or live video feeds from a camera or video switchers. (Such as you'd find in the video feeds available at conventions from a press box.) If a camcorder doesn't have Firewire output, it'll have to connect to a card with video/audio to digital conversion. (I have never, ever, EVER seen video on a USB connection that works.) With those kind of captures, maintaining rock-steady video and audio sync is essential. The only way I ever found to do this reliably was with a camcorder with video passthru and Firewire.

    Part of my inquiry is to find out if anyone on this planet has developed a PCI or PCI-E video card that actually maintains video/audio sync, without hanging one of the Canopus ADVC-100 converters on the outside. Yes, I am grouchy, I was burned by buying "economical" capture cards in the past, and I don't want to have to buy old camcorders again just to get back to where I was. I was hoping the state of the art had improved by now.
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  5. The good news is that most devices which have analog capture also have ATSC tuners. So you can try both. The bad news is the only thing new in standard definition video capture in the last 10 years is that devices have gotten cheaper and cheaper -- and not in the good way. PCI/PCIe is no guaranty of A/V sync.

    http://forum.videohelp.com/threads/365385-Card-with-composite-video-in?p=2329451&viewf...=1#post2329451
    http://forum.videohelp.com/threads/365385-Card-with-composite-video-in?p=2333170&viewf...=1#post2333170

    Also consider the ATI TV Wonder 600 devices.
    Last edited by jagabo; 11th Jul 2014 at 08:38.
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  6. Member
    Join Date: Oct 2004
    Location: Freedonia
    Search Comp PM
    I've got a Hauppauge Colossus card that is PCI-e and I'm pretty happy with it. It has an internal TBC you can turn on with a Windows registry hack and it's worked fine for my needs. I've never had an a/v sync issue, but I do not at all do the type of video capturing you are asking about. I only do the following types of captures in order of frequency:
    1) Captures from my Uverse DVR of videos I want to keep
    2) Laserdisc
    3) VHS tapes
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  7. Note the Colossus is a hardware h.264 encoder. If you plan on a lot of filtering you may want to avoid that. The lTBC hack is a good feature though. And you'll be set for HD capture too.
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  8. Member
    Join Date: Aug 2006
    Location: United States
    Search Comp PM
    Originally Posted by Thomas Reed View Post
    To usually_quiet and jagabo...I don't trust the teeny little tuners put in video cards. I would rather accept a lossy environment from digital>analog>digital conversion than have to put up with the poor reception performance of a PC tuner card. Remember that those tuners are already in a polluted environment of digital signals inside the PC case. Mounting the tuner several feet from the PC inside a steel grounded case would be needed to make a teeny-tiny tin box work.

    I am also interested in capturing video streams from sources such as camcorders or live video feeds from a camera or video switchers. (Such as you'd find in the video feeds available at conventions from a press box.) If a camcorder doesn't have Firewire output, it'll have to connect to a card with video/audio to digital conversion. (I have never, ever, EVER seen video on a USB connection that works.) With those kind of captures, maintaining rock-steady video and audio sync is essential. The only way I ever found to do this reliably was with a camcorder with video passthru and Firewire.

    Part of my inquiry is to find out if anyone on this planet has developed a PCI or PCI-E video card that actually maintains video/audio sync, without hanging one of the Canopus ADVC-100 converters on the outside. Yes, I am grouchy, I was burned by buying "economical" capture cards in the past, and I don't want to have to buy old camcorders again just to get back to where I was. I was hoping the state of the art had improved by now.
    Despite your reservations, my PCI-E dual ATSC tuner TV card performs rather well. However, not all PC TV tuners are installed inside the case. Although it can't capture from analog video sources, this is an excellent dual tuner that attaches to your router or an unused LAN port on the PC.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16815345015

    There may be no new standard definition capture-only devices that will meet your all requirements. For one thing, pure capture devices with no TV tuner are less likely to capture closed captions because they are not primarily designed with TV capture in mind. I agree with jagabo's suggestion to get a TV tuner card with the ability to capture from analog sources.

    Hauppauge makes one internal TV tuner card with a PCI-e interface that may or may not be close enough to what you are looking for to be satisfactory, the WinTV HVR 1250. It does software encoding for analog sources and has the ability to capture video from composite or S-video, as well as analog stereo audio.

    If you are using Windows 7's Media Center or WinTV 7, it is possible to capture closed captions. However Windows Media Center captures MPEG2 video in a WTV container with the closed captions in a separate stream. ...and WinTV 7 captures MPEG2 video in a TS container with the closed captions in a separate stream. The most recent version of CCExtractorGUI can extract the closed captions from .ts and .wtv files captured by this card. Other capture software probably won't be able to capture the closed captions from the VBI, although it would allow capturing to an AVI container using suitable video codecs.

    The only other new similar choice is the Diamond TV Wonder 750 HD PCI-e card. The captures exhibit automatic gain control issues and some field blending, but closed caption data accessible using GraphEdit or GraphStudio as well as Windows Media Center.

    These cards will be able to capture the output from a DTV converter box. Will they do a good job capturing analog tapes? That is hard to say. For some tapes, virtually all analog capture devices do need a line TBC or even a full-frame TBC to correct the signal before it reaches them.

    I recently bought a Hauppauge Colossus. While it appears to be a good HD capture card so far, in addition to having an H.264 hardware encoder and no ability to supply uncompressed video, there is no way to obtain closed caption data from its SD captures at this time. There never will be any ability to capture closed caption data from any HD video connection, as those cannot provide the VBI portion of the signal.
    Last edited by usually_quiet; 11th Jul 2014 at 15:06.
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