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  1. Will let you know about the SATA Sparkie
    , as i'm raiding two drives tomoz for testing
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  2. Bad tracking on VHS tapes can cause dropped frames (this can be corrected by fixing the tracking of course, when auto-tracking doesn't seem to work). Some sources that appear to jitter will register as dropped frames in a capture program, even when you can't seem to adjust the tracking.

    I notice this with some concert tapes I'm putting onto DVD.
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  3. funkydude74. Asked
    For those lucky people who have hardly any or no frame droppage capturing 720x576, could you's tell me what sort of system you's are using, what sort of captur card, what sort of RAM size, hard disk size etc.???
    Sparkie Asked
    Does anyone know or have experience with serial ata hard drives? Are they better than IDE controlled hard drives?

    My SYS
    GA-7N400 Pro AMD 2700XP
    1 x 512 major ram 3200
    MSI G4Ti4200-vtd8x
    2 x 120 Maxtor ATA133
    just set up 2 x 80 Maxtor SATA on raid
    just done first capture from vcr to sata for a test.
    Composite capture in Virtualdub
    Audio 48-16-st-187
    Compression huffyuv
    Format 720x576
    Frames dropped 31 from 138162
    Conclusion about the same as ATA 133
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  4. The Old One SatStorm's Avatar
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    Aug 2000
    Hellas (Greece), E.U.
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    I have no framedrops with all my PCs.
    My lower combo:

    CPU: Duron 1200
    Chaintech via motherboard (don't remember, the cheapest one...)
    256SDram (yeah, my old sticks...)
    40 + 40 GB HDs (WD both, ATA 66)
    Soundblaster PCI 128
    KW TV878RF-PRO capture card
    VGA: Nvidia Geforce 2
    Latest tweaked BT8x8 drivers
    I Capture with Virtualdub and virtualvcr
    No framedrops, even when I capture PAL60 720 x 480 at 29.97fps (a really difficult thing to capture...)

    SATA HDs are O.K., but only few mobos support them right. Untill decent drivers / hardware / cheap products appear in the market, I gonna use PATA and only PATA. You don't need the best system for capturing. You need the best possible drivers and the most mature software !
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  5. No framedrops here, check my computer details for specs.
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  6. Nice setup Craig

    SatStorm. My capture would not fit on one of your hard drive,

    Let me see a piccy like this with no dropped frame
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  7. The reason my system drops frames is:
    Running Unecessary Tray progs
    Having open connection
    Possibly Audigy

    I have configured my system so that on capture, almost all resources are free, so that any frame dropped are not the fault of the system the the media being transfered.

    I wanna get a magnetic superdrive, with full format support and a diamond head.
    NON-VHS others
    in NTSC(ALL), PAL(ALL), and (ME)SECAM.

    I run a 2G P4 and 2 seagates 120gb.
    Usually you can try to repeat the capture.
    I use Premier Pro 7
    Ulead Movie Studio
    and Virtual Dub

    The VCR is a multisystem PanasonicNV-HD680, the cables are monster cable3, the capture device is Dazzle Hollywood DV-Bridge and the firewire unit is the Sound Blaster Audigy Platinum EX.
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  8. The Old One SatStorm's Avatar
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    Aug 2000
    Hellas (Greece), E.U.
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    That's why I said my lower system.
    My top system, includes 2 250HD WD PATA drives, with XP 2600/266 (yes, 266FSB), an asus nforce 2 motherboard, and an asus 7700 card for capture. It is the oldest part of my system, but it does excellent captures, with amazing quality, so I don't wanna stop using it (In the matter of fact, I exect a second one to set it up to my second PC).
    No frame drops with that PC also.
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  9. Capture Card: Avermedia EZDVDMaker PCI - SAA7130 chipset
    Rig: Athlon XP 2000+ 640MB SDRAM
    ATA100 HD - 80 GB (OS and programs) and 160 GB (just for capturing) - on the same cable though - DMA enabled (Ultra DMA 5)
    Windows XP - SP1a
    Motherboard - ECS K7S5A (piece of $hit - now i know why)
    Capture Program - NeoDVDStandard 4.1 (upgraded)
    BTC 1008W (8x dual dvd writer)
    generic 3 port firewire

    I had 1ghz duron with 512mb ram with windows 2000 - other things remained same. The MPEG2 - BEST capture was dropping frames left
    and right !!! So, I swapped CPUs from another of my system.
    Exactly same problem again !! Dropped frames every minute or so. Sometimes more than once in a minute.

    Then upgraded to Windows XP.

    Got Pinnacle Studio 8.0 from a friend to try it out. The damn program will simply give stoopid "Capture Error". The preview window does show the video, but the capture will fail. Download the 8.12.2 patch, now the Capture Error is more "informative" but the problem remains. In 8.0, atleast there were buttons for Composite, SVideo. 8.12.2 is so f**ked up, it only shows a "Tuner" button. Even though there is no tuner in the damn card. So, I gave up on Abysmal Studio.

    Went back to NeoDVDStandard 4.1 on windows XP. Same damn dropped frames ! I was going crazy. Have a dead line to copy 30 8mm cassettes before Feb 15th as my sony 8mm camcorder will be gone forever.

    Wife has been threatening that she will copy all 30 cassettes to VHS and I'm going noooooooooooo.. (bought 8x DVD writer, 160 and 80 GB hard drives etc etc for this project .. not counting 100s of hours already spend swapping cpus, installing cards, drivers, OS, etc etc).

    I've Panasonic GS50S Palmcorder. I captured a 2 hour tape via digital passthru using the Ulead Studio 7.0. When I tried to burn a DVD using Ulead 7.0 - it kept on saying "Converting" for like 6+ hours --- gave up on it. Tried to convert from DV to MPEG2 using TmpGenEnc - looks like it takes about 4 hours to convert a 2 hour video. Dont have time (see 30 tapes to convert). Also dont have space to store all 30 tapes and convert later. 1 hour DV is about 7-8 GB. I've to copy about 50 hours. So, converting is not an option.

    Went back to the crappy/jerky/skippy NeoDVD capture and copied 1 more tape. More jerks and skips.

    Then last night I was reading this thread and found out that crappy onboard sound cards are one of the reasons for dropped frames! So, I decided to just capture the video and unplug the audio. Captured about 5 mins of video and lo and behold !!!

    Not a single drop frame !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Thank you guys !!!

    Now I'll get a PCI sound card - i read it can be cheapo also - as long as its a card and not onboard crap - will buy may be 3-4 different companies/chipsets and try one by one.

    Will update later.


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  10. Just a quick addition to dropped frames problems with using firewire. A guy at work helped me fix my problem. I was losing about 1/3 of my frames and on here people were telling me to look at the DMA settings and make sure they were on "DMA if available" which I had it on but the IDE controller still said in the current transfer mode: "PIO Only" with no way to change it. I'm surprised no one on here told me to look at this. He said to look at the jumper on my HD and make sure it is set as a Master and not on Cable Select (CS). This fixed the whole problem with a 2 second fix. Not a single dropped frame for 1.5 hours of DV tape!

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  11. Member VideoTechMan's Avatar
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    Michigan, USA
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    Now I find this current system has onboard audio, and I have captured from DV and analog and have not dropped a single frame during the entire process, and that was about 10-20mins of video. Of course now that I will be building my new system this weekend with higher end specs, that may run even better. Of course, I have always used Premeire to do my captures because of the deck control function for my DV deck and Sony TRV-350. Ive even setup batch capture with several clips from the same tape and I went in another room to take a nap while the computer did its chores. Came back, not a single dropped frame. It all depends on your system setup and configuration and making sure your settings are where they should be. Its usually good to have a dedicated system for mainly video work.

    I have the staff of power, now it's up to me to use it to its full potential to command my life and be successful.
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  12. I thought it sounded sort of odd also. This guy that helped me fix this problem is a professional in studio production. We work at a company where he works in the studio production dept. and has for 15 yrs. He started explaining why using the cable select can slow down your HD performance but I wasn't really listening as he was getting into way too much detail for me. It has something to do with when the drive in on cable select it takes more time to find the correct cable and IDE configuration. But, if you have it set on Master and have everything set up correctly (which most people do), the HD works faster because it does not have to figure out the configuration for itself. According to him, the cable select feature has been around for years (which I do know and remember this) and was an easier way for the regular consumer to set up a computer without having to mess around with boot sequences and such. Back then, it really did not matter if your HD ran a little slow, none of us were doing DV on it.

    Jeff N
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  13. OK.. after months of capture problems with my ATI ALL IN WONDER 7500 CARD I read the "sticky" here and did everything that it said... and now my MPEG (vcd) CAPTURE RATE IS BACK DOWN TO <1 % FRAME LOSS.

    For the record: I have a Pentium 3 computer and use the Windows ME OS. I have broadband with Charter Cable and McAfee Virus scan enabled.
    I daily use AD-AWARE AND SPYBOT SEARCH AND DESTROY to keep my computer as bug-free as possible... (Sadly, I do not have the funds to buy a computer that is dedicated solely to video work)

    My ATI ALL IN WONDER CARD 7500 worked great for the first year. Then the frame loss rate began to go all over the scale. Example,,, capturing a PBS show a week ago my frame loss varied from 2% to 6% to 4% all in the first few minutes. I couldn't understand it... I was not writing email, reading online material, or downloading anything... yet the frame loss rate sure seemed to fluctuate as tho I were doing those things...

    I began to believe that thru heavy use my ATI 7500 capture card had begun to decay...

    Then last night I disabled McAfee Virus scan, pulled the plug on my cable modem, shut down everything on my tool bar, and tried captured the Academy Awards... frame loss was <1%, and stayed that way for the entire time.

    Guys, you are worth every penny that I paid for this site! (Oh, you don't charge, I forgot... funny that for free I can get better help and advice than I do calling a call center that I get billed for!)
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  14. Just a little update on the original post:

    Heat. An overheated system can drop frames. P4 processors will slow themselves up and hard drives will act erratic when overheated. AMD processors can melt down and/or deteriorate (no safety device like the P4)
    Most Athlon XP motherboards made in the last few years *do* have overheating protection (possibly the CPUs themsleves too? I don't know), so it's definately not a problem any more and most of you shouldn't worry about it.
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  15. Member
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    melbourne, australia
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    I have to say after reading some of the advice that a lot of it is rubbish.

    In general, in my own experience [ATI] packed in drivers generally won't
    do the job and you have to log in and get more... which also generally
    don't work, either getting dropped frames or sound sync probs.

    ATI admitted a fault with sound sync and released a new driver to get
    around that, and to their credit, it worked *better* but didn't cure the
    problem. I could capture at 640 x 480 which was nice, but not at true
    PAL size... and the sound wouldn't noticably go out of sync for around
    20 minutes [a lot better than the previous 20 seconds, roughly].

    The stuff I was reading about copying VHS to DVD was a joke...
    I mean, how can a computer tell the difference between a pristine
    analogue tape and one that is old and full of fluff? it can't... input is
    input folks, whether it's a clean signal or coming from mars.

    In fact, on my brand spanking new machine, a P4 3.2Ghz using
    WinXP, ATI Radeon 7500, 1G Ram, I decided to set up roxio videowave
    and give it a go.

    Using brand new drivers from the ATI website for WinXP which I had to
    use [for the amazingly special "hyperthreading technology" in the P4]
    I captured pure static with Videowave as a simple test.

    After doing the 30min captures from VHS [as mentioned earlier] on my
    P3 933 machine [384 Megs Ram, Same ATI card, Same SBlive]
    I had expected a much more wonderderful result... however the system
    skipped over frames like a spring lamb frolicking in the sunshine.

    I have tested everything that I could, I took notes and checked everything
    mentioned in the earlier posts, with no better result.

    Analogue recording is a complete frustration, stuff seldom works and
    I bet most of it comes down to sheer luck on anyones part.

    On the other hand, my system also has within it's bustic innards a
    wonderful card called a Vision DTV which is a digital terrestrial card.

    It recieves digital free to air tv directly via it's single antenna port
    and I can capture the most amazing video, it blew me away when I
    saw what it could do.

    The data from Windvd4 says this about the HDTV demo which is currently
    playing on channel seven [Australia] (576p)
    which I recorded to hard drive.

    Bitrate 9,000mbps
    Framerate 50,000hz
    Res 520 x 756
    Aspect ratio 16:9

    Channel Nine, However, uses 1080i HDTV
    and a recorded file reads like this:

    Interlaced MPEG2
    Bitrate 12,500Mbps
    Framerate 25,000hz
    Res 1920 x 1088
    Aspect ratio 16x9

    The sound in this case is DTS also!

    My machine is struggling to play the file but it's not doing
    a bad job. though my old P3 933 machine could easily
    capture anything played on channel seven

    Normal tv broadcasts are the same as the seven specs except
    it uses a 25,000hz framerate.

    All this was so easy to set up even an idiot could do it...
    I installed the card, loaded the CD and then ran a search for
    the stations. bingo! nothing could be simpler.

    I didn't have to hunt for files that couldn't be found, there was no
    frustrations anywhere.

    Look, I sympathise with those who have stuff on VHS tape, I have loads
    too and would love to comvert it to DVD and would, if it did what it should
    but 90% of the time it's a losers game.

    There are people here who only want to copy dvds, but there are others
    here like myself who have copied funny or interesting stuff off tv over
    the years, and also have camcorder tapes etc which we'd like to preserve
    on dvd but cannot because people are too busy making cards for gamers
    and the rest of us can take a running jump off a short pier.

    Take my advice, go digital and give analogue the boot.

    Here's to the future.

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  16. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    Jun 2003
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    Originally Posted by Wolfie!
    The stuff I was reading about copying VHS to DVD was a joke... I mean, how can a computer tell the difference between a pristine
    analogue tape and one that is old and full of fluff? it can't... input is
    input folks, whether it's a clean signal or coming from mars.
    Wrong. Totally wrong. I owe a lot to the person that originally wrote this post (with some of my ideas, I might add), and not one bit of it is bad advice.

    Just because you are unfamiliar with the situation does not make it untrue.
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  17. Member
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    melbourne, australia
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    If I am wrong, that a computer *can* tell if it's being fed a signal from
    a bad tape or a good one, then I would like you to tell me how this is so.

    If You were feeding the system a digital source, then that is a system
    which is compatible with what the computer understands.

    But with a stream from a VHS machine, it's not even data...
    it won't be data until the computer encodes it into something else...
    it needs to encode it into some sort of digital system merely for viewing
    even before you hit the record button.

    The computer wouldn't know input from a VHS tape, a computer game,
    Videodisc, a DVD antenna out [rca input or other non-digital means].

    Don't be fooled, a computer is simply not that intelligent.

    If you believe otherwise, prove it.
    show me the money.

    As for my digital tv card, I forgot to mention that it runs perfectly.
    the sound is perfectly in sync even after hours of recording and there
    are no skipped frames whatsoever.

    Put that in your pipe and smoke it. :)

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  18. Sorry Wolfie, you are wrong. Even most digital cams still record onto an analog tape, but it is just recorded as a digital signal. When it is sent to your computer it is sent as a digital signal. The same with VHS, when it is captured from the tape is is saved as a digital format in one way or the other, no matter what you are using to capture it. Maybe you have a computer that can capture analog signals! If so, I would like to know what device you are using to do this. Digital capture has to read a "clean" signal, if you use some garbage tape (ie. old, worn out, etc.) or some old cheap VCR then you will get dropped frames and a bad recording. This is because of the conversion process being done either in your capture card, external capture device (Canopus, Dazzle, etc.). If the device is reading garbage then you will get garbage. But, since it is converted into digital, rather than just recording the garbage, it is dropped out. This is similar to taking a audio cassette tape and twisting up all the recording material and playing it. It will play, but sound like crap. If you take an audio CD and scratch the surface, it will sound perfect BUT will skip horribly. If you use 2 VCR's to dub a tape, the yes, it does not matter. You have to remember, you are converting from analog to digital. This is a very touchy process for a computer to do. Hollywood producers spend millions on this every year transferring old movied into crisp clear digital movies. As for the comment:" If You were feeding the system a digital source, then that is a system which is compatible with what the computer understands." This is sort of a rediculous comment. Like I said, unless you have some sort of device to capture analog onto your computer, it is all captured as a digital. You really need to look into this more.

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  19. I'm a Super Moderator johns0's Avatar
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    Jun 2002
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    I think Wolfie is forgetting that the capture card sends the converted signal to the computer as digital and not analog.
    I think,therefore i am a hamster.
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  20. Member
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    people always seem to get me wrong, that annoys me.

    I said that a VCR sends stuff to the computer as an analogue signal,
    it has to, it's an analogue machine.
    yes, the computer *changes* it to digital... but before that happens
    we're talking about an analogue signal.

    I strongly doubt that it's going to make any difference, whether you use a good or a bad recording. I feel it's all in the computer whether you're going
    to get a great transfer or a poor one. before you get a good result you'll
    have aged about ten years and gone bald from all the stress anyway.
    upload this, change that, bad driver, etc etc etc.

    I would love to transfer my tapes to dvd, but I don't think that's going
    to happen unless I spend some serious cash, and loose some more hair
    and possibly my teeth and end up with a straight jacket in a nice padded
    cell... such is the frustration of analogue transfer.

    Bully for the producers of DVD, they've got millions to spend and can
    afford the latest stuff and a house fill of Sony Aibos on the side.
    (I once met a fellow with one in every colour!) also, they're dealing with
    *film* that's right mate... good old celluloid, not some crappy videotape.
    [or computer files if you're talking about pixar etc].

    My digital tv card is a seperate issue altogether, you see, it works and
    does the job well... and I can transfer my files to dvd very easily...
    on a budget that even I can handle.

    It means that I have now abandoned my VCR except if I want to play
    some old tapes... but since I can record real widescreen content straight
    to hard drive and there is *no loss* of picture or sound quality, well...
    who needs analogue?

    Trouble is we are in that transistion stage, there's the problem.
    one I still have to tackle..

    Anyone got a phone number for a hair restoring joint?

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  21. There are a lot of people here, myself included that can do good transfers from VHS to digital format without spending a fortune on hardware. And the quality of the tapes does matter, if this was not the case explain how with a good tape a capture can be accomplised with no frameloss, but with a poor quality tape you can drop frames like crazy, using exactly the same capture hardware and setup. The only thing to have changed is the tape, so it would be safe to assume that this is culprit for causing framedrops.
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  22. Thank you Craig. I like to see people that agree in situations. I think that Wolfie really needs to look into his assumptions and study his accusations before posting comments about what hundreds of people on here have been trying to figure out for years.

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  23. Member
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    Some other important items you can change to avoid dropped frames:

    - download a free ad cleaner like "Ad-Aware" to delete sneaky internet installed programs, some of these ads/programs activate the hard drive randomly (enabling the firewall can help prevent this in the future).

    - increase the virtual memory swap file size to maybe 2GB if you have the memory.

    - if you can't use a dedicated hard drive for just capturing (or use a partition), make sure both partitions have a decent amount of free disk space.

    - Run MSCONFIG and disable some of the systems that run automatically (I think the site "blackviper" will tell you what each does and if you should disable them). Also disable certain start-up options in you don't need/want them.

    I'll recap other ideas mentioned:

    - add more memory to your system
    - always reboot and defrag hard drive before capturing
    - lower screen resolution if really high
    - run no other programs, kill any scheduled/unnecessary tasks (also run "Enditall")
    - stay disconnected from internet and unplug connection cable
    - test that the hard drive has decent enough read/write transfer rates

    Good luck!
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  24. I'm using a Leadtek TV 2000/XP Expert card and had problems in the beginning w/ dropped frames. System is: an AXP 2200+ w/ 1GB RAM, 2x80GB RAID0 (WD 8MB Cache Drives), a GEForce 5600 & WinXP Home. I found that making sure the capture card isn't sharing resources (IRQ's, etc.) w/ other hardware made a big difference in my case. So I had to shift to several PCI slots before I found a non-share (verified in DevMan). Also, I like to reboot on a "clean-slate" -- running MSCONFIG w/ selective startup and turning off all startup apps before starting the capture. Also, I turned off any unneccessary services as these can eat up resources.

    I've been making SVCD's from Betamax w/ great success since doing the above. All of the source tapes were recorded in SuperBeta (~360 lines) from Laserdisc in the early 90's using SHG blanks. All disks done in 2-pass VBR and look excellent.
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  25. Member
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    Madz...what is "DevMan"? I would like to verify my capture device doesn't share resources as well. Thanks!
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  26. Member
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    DevMan is Device Manager.
    May the force be with you.
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  27. Having a bit of frame loss over here, but not a *whole* lot, so I'm wondering if there's something basic that could be done to correct this...

    Athlon XP 2000+
    512mb RAM
    VIA KM266 chipset (I've installed the VIA latency patch, but it didn't seem to make much difference)
    Cheapo SB16 4.1 PCI
    Cheapo AVerDVD EZmaker PCI card

    I've been capturing with VDub and HuffyUV at 352x240 (I'm only making VCDs anyway) and having about an average of 130 dropped frames per 2 hours. This really doesn't account for much of a noticeable problem when watching the movies, but the audio gets a bit off-sync by just a *tiny* fraction.

    Most of the time you can barely even notice the sync issue, so I probably shouldn't complain, but it just seems like I'm *so* close to getting this "problem-free," that I have to wonder what else I could do to reduce the dropped frames by just a tad more...

    EDIT: Oh, incidentally, my source is from a DSS receiver ran through a small mixing board, so it's not just caused by a faulty VHS source.
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  28. Member
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    Are you sure you're actually dropping frames? I wouldn't go by the audio sync issue, I would go primarily by visual inspection.

    In my opinion, there's no good reason to ever accept dropped frames, it is realistic to expect perfection in capturing (though all the time you spend reviewing your footage to make sure no frames are dropped also can make you never want to see it again).

    I use VirtualVCR and have had no problems at all. If you've used the above guidelines in my and others messages and it's still happening, I'm not sure what else to suggest.
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  29. I use VirtualVCR and have had no problems at all. If you've used the above guidelines in my and others messages and it's still happening, I'm not sure what else to suggest.
    Actually, I think VirtualVCR was the only thing I hadn't tried (I was getting it confused with iuVCR, I think). Happy to report that I gave VV a shot last night and managed only 3 dropped frames in two hours. Not sure what's different about my settings in VV than in V-Dub, but oh well, as long as it keeps working like this.

    Thanks a lot for the suggestion.
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  30. Member
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    Glad it worked...there's nothing worse than dropped frames...not sure why you're still dropping a few.

    You could always recapture the areas of dropped frames and insert them in the original capture where they need to be...may be overkill, but it's a work-around.
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