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  1. I am supposed to film a cheerleading event in less than two weeks. I plan on using my Panasonic GS300 mini DV camera. The people putting on this event want to record straight into a DVD recorder and then make copies in a DVD duplicator out in the lobby to sell on the spot, in a half hour or so after a segment is done. I assume this is doable and in real time. But what issues do I need to sure I have covered before I do this. I haven't done anything like this before, so things I am wondering about are:

    should I get the same brand recorder to avoid difficulties?

    Are there settings on DVD recorders for aspect ratio or does it just automatically fill a 4:3 screen even if I am shooting 16:9 (will it fill the screen or add black bars?).

    Is there a chance the recorder will overheat? (the event will last most of the day, but there will be small breaks between performances).

    Is firewire connection the best way?

    Does the DVD recorder compress the video and is there any loss of quality?

    Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Phil
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  2. This is easily doable. You don't need the same brand as your camcorder. Some recorder are better than others. Check the reviews on this site or find which ones you have available and reserach them individually. Most DVD recorders do a very good job. If the event is short enough stay with the 1 hour setting on the recorder and 99.9% of people will be happy with the result. The main concern is compatibility with other players. That's why many people record onto a DVD+/-RW and then rip it to PC and author. This method incrases the chance other players can read it easily.

    I think most recorders are 4:3 aspect. Maybe some record to 16:9. You'd have to check on that.

    You shouldn't have to worry about overheating. Any decent model should work as long as you need. Just make sure it's not covered by anything or blocked on the sides so air can easily get to it. If it's outside it may be more of a concern. Inside should be ok.

    Firewire would be the best connection to use.
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  3. Member edDV's Avatar
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    16:9 will be the problem.

    Most camcorders will letterbox 16:9 over the S-Video output. As for IEEE-1394, the camcorder may output wide DV but few DVD recorders will accept it as 16:9 and you may get horizontally squeezed 4:3 or nothing at all. You need to research and experiment long before the event.

    The no brainer strategy:

    Record 16:9 to DV tape, output 4:3 letterbox over S-Video (or IEEE-1394 if it works) to a typical recorder. The quick copies will be 4:3 with letterbox (the DVD player thinks they are 4:3). You can offer computer authored 480i wide format for later delivery.
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  4. 16:9 will be the problem.

    Most camcorders will letterbox 16:9 over the S-Video output. As for IEEE-1394, the camcorder may output wide DV but few DVD recorders will accept it as 16:9 and you may get horizontally squeezed 4:3 or nothing at all. You need to research and experiment long before the event.

    The no brainer strategy:

    Record 16:9 to DV tape, output 4:3 letterbox over S-Video (or IEEE-1394 if it works) to a typical recorder. The quick copies will be 4:3 with letterbox (the DVD player thinks they are 4:3). You can offer computer authored 480i wide format for later delivery.
    If this is going to be a problem, I think I will just suggest to the guys that I record in 4:3 (the camera will) and it will be much more likely to avoid difficulties that way.

    I appreciate the input. Guess I better find a DVD recorder.

    BTW, in looking at some other threads on this topic, I noticed terms like upconvert and HDMI. Is that only relevant to HD video? Not an issue with my situation?
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  5. Originally Posted by edDV
    16:9 will be the problem.

    Record 16:9 to DV tape, output 4:3 letterbox over S-Video (or IEEE-1394 if it works) to a typical recorder. The quick copies will be 4:3 with letterbox (the DVD player thinks they are 4:3). You can offer computer authored 480i wide format for later delivery.
    I think this is brand (and maybe model) specific. I have two different Sony DV camcorders that can record in true 16:9. Neither of them can output 4:3 letterbox via S-video. Only the camcorders LCD displays adjust to the aspect ratio.

    This was a neverending source of frustration for me and ultimately is why the Enosoft DV Processor was born - to do realtime 16:9 to 4:3 letterbox so I could watch my widescreen underwater and safari videos without having to spend a small fortune on a widescreen TV! For some marketing reason, standard definition widescreen TVs are very few and far between in the US, unlike in Europe - so you have to shell out for HD! And I just don't have the need or desire for HD.
    John Miller
    enosoft - high performance tools for music and video

    Home of the Enosoft DV Processor - Free for personal use!
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  6. Member edDV's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by JohnnyMalaria
    Originally Posted by edDV
    16:9 will be the problem.

    Record 16:9 to DV tape, output 4:3 letterbox over S-Video (or IEEE-1394 if it works) to a typical recorder. The quick copies will be 4:3 with letterbox (the DVD player thinks they are 4:3). You can offer computer authored 480i wide format for later delivery.
    I think this is brand (and maybe model) specific. I have two different Sony DV camcorders that can record in true 16:9. Neither of them can output 4:3 letterbox via S-video. Only the camcorders LCD displays adjust to the aspect ratio.
    Yes S-Video output processing is very brand and model specific as is the DV input modes on DVD Recorders. That is why you need to test your own camcorder to see what it puts out and do the same with input modes on availalble DVD recorders. Testing is necessary. Never assume.
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  7. Member edDV's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by phillibuck
    16:9 will be the problem.

    Most camcorders will letterbox 16:9 over the S-Video output. As for IEEE-1394, the camcorder may output wide DV but few DVD recorders will accept it as 16:9 and you may get horizontally squeezed 4:3 or nothing at all. You need to research and experiment long before the event.

    The no brainer strategy:

    Record 16:9 to DV tape, output 4:3 letterbox over S-Video (or IEEE-1394 if it works) to a typical recorder. The quick copies will be 4:3 with letterbox (the DVD player thinks they are 4:3). You can offer computer authored 480i wide format for later delivery.
    If this is going to be a problem, I think I will just suggest to the guys that I record in 4:3 (the camera will) and it will be much more likely to avoid difficulties that way.

    I appreciate the input. Guess I better find a DVD recorder.

    BTW, in looking at some other threads on this topic, I noticed terms like upconvert and HDMI. Is that only relevant to HD video? Not an issue with my situation?
    4:3 is the safest route but still needs full test (rehearsal) with the equipment that will be used. I thought you were saying 16:9 was a requirement.

    80% of people will probably be watching on a 4:3 TV.
    15% may prefer letterbox 16:9 or be watching on a HDTV
    <5% may have a DVD player hooked up 16:9 component to a wide screen TV for proper full 16:9 display.
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  8. 4:3 is the safest route but still needs full test (rehearsal) with the equipment that will be used. I thought you were saying 16:9 was a requirement.
    It is definitely what they prefer, and I can trial run it, but if it is just gonna cause more issues, I'm sure they can be persuaded to do 4:3. All it is gonna be is a wide shot of the dance routines. Nothing more. Obviously, it is just that with 16:9, your wide shot is a little wider!
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  9. Member edDV's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by phillibuck
    4:3 is the safest route but still needs full test (rehearsal) with the equipment that will be used. I thought you were saying 16:9 was a requirement.
    It is definitely what they prefer, and I can trial run it, but if it is just gonna cause more issues, I'm sure they can be persuaded to do 4:3. All it is gonna be is a wide shot of the dance routines. Nothing more. Obviously, it is just that with 16:9, your wide shot is a little wider!
    Then look at your S-Video output and see if it is present and letterbox when the camcorder is shooting 16:9. If so, it will work with most DVD recorders. The DVD recorder will think it is recording 4:3. Meanwhile, you will be recording the true widescreen signal to DV tape that can be authored to widescreen DVD later.
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