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  1. Member
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    How to Tune your system for ATI capture cards---General guide

    So many people have complained about poor system performance and dropping frames during capture, I felt since I had the same problems I would post this help file. Here are some things to check. Yes you should be able to do much better.

    1. Make sure your hard disk is set for DMA in Device Manager. If you have 2 disks, check both. You can go into Control Panel>Systems>Device Manager>Hard Disks>properties, (for each disk drive) and check the DMA box.

    2. Do you have a “Via Hardware Chip on your Motherboard? If you do you need to get the latest drivers for your Motherboard that support the Via Chip set. You can go to your own Motherboard web site or go to the Via Hardware WEB site. Download Via Hardware new 4:1 drivers and install. This is specifically for the KT 133 chips from Via hardware. Double check that you have the latest Bios for your Motherboard. If not, download and install that.

    3. Diagnostic mode. Before you start to capture, shut down everything on your task bar. One way to do this is to configure your system so that is starts with everything shut down. You can still start the programs you want to use, but at least they won’t start automatically and stay resident in memory. In Windows, click on Start>Run, and key in Msconfig, ...This will bring up a window with all kinds of choices. In the “Generals” tab select “Selective Startup”. This will allow you to control everything on you system at startup. Go to “Startup” tab. The only programs that should stay checked are, ScanRegistry, SystemTray, LoadPowerProfile, MXvfxStartup, and any ATI programs you will need, or VirtualDub, or TMPgen,

    4. Check your Bios on start up to make sure your MB is set for ATA 100 or 66 MBS, depending on the capability of your disk drive. If your disk is 100 MBS, most motherboard wont’ support that unless it is one of the very new ones. The bios will show you what your setting is. Read your MB or Hard Disk manual for changes. If it is set at 33MBS, go into your Bios setup and enable it for 66 MBA, only if you know that your hard disk will support 66 MBS and try that. IF it works, try 100 MBS and see if that works. IF your bios says 33 MBS, it could be your motherboard limit, but it would have to be a very old motherboard. Read below and see if you need to setup the bios.

    5. Check the IDE adapter cable running to your ATA hard disk. Is it a high performance UDMA cable which supports 66 or 100 MBS? IF the wrong end is plugged into the motherboard it won’t work. Check your hard disk manual, it will show you which way the cable goes. The Ultra ATA cable has a black connector on one end and a Blue connector on the other end. The Blue connector must be plugged into the motherboard at the 1st IDE connector position.

    6. Is the ATA 100 Drive on the same buss as your CD-ROM. IF it is your only drive, and windows is on the same disk, this will give you problems. If you have two hard disk, get windows and software on drive C, as primary on 1st IDE buss, and then set second ATA 100 disk as secondary on same buss. Put all other drives, CD-ROMs on Secondary IDE buss.

    7. What software are you using for capture,.. MMC 7.5?, VirtualDub, ????

    8. If you can capture in .AVI using Huffyuv codec, it will drop the capture data rate and you should drop less frames. If you are using direct capture to MPEG in MMC there is more discussion on this in para. 14.

    9. Motherboards. Watch you screen very close as you shut down and power up. Use the “pause” function to stop the screen and write down the data. There is a web site on the internet that can tell you what kind of mother board you have by using the Bios codes and version numbers. Look it up, find the manual on their web site. Go to the Motherboard WEB site and check for the latest “Drivers”, and BIOS levels.

    With system performance of 600+ MHZ (AMD or Intel) you should not be dropping any frames (except at startup & possible at very fast screen changes) if you have fast enough hard disk. I would first suggest that you tune your system and make sure you are not limited in capture by your configuration.

    11. Tuning is basically making sure your system is setup for good DMA, all none essential programs shut down, and no interrupt are being shared with you capture card. Before trying the next process, be sure to first try all the suggestions listed above,... the next one gets very complicated if you screw up.

    12. Separate Hardware Profiles. To tune my system I spent a lot of time doing research on Tuning. I think I have my system optimized for Video. I have two “Start Up” options for my Windows ME system. The first is “Standard Hardware Config.”, where all normal programs and hardware are enabled. The second hardware Profile, is “Video Capture”, where I have shut down every piece of hardware and resource that is not need for video capture. It is a very long list. This function allows you to create two unique systems at boot time such that you can control what functions are enabled and which are disabled. In Device MGR, I disable all non necessary hardware and software. I also set the system to start in diagnostic mode, as mentioned in item 3 above, where I shut down all programs that would normally startup, use up memory, resources, etc.

    When you open the Window Control Panel and select the Systems, this will bring up a window showing the “Device Manager”, “Hardware Profiles”, and “Performance”. Select the Hardware Profiles tab. The default profile is the only hardware profile that exist on you system right now. Select your default profile and then select “Copy” and give your new profile a name like “Video XXX” and then save it and exit. “DO NOT CHANGE ANYTHING ELSE’. Then restart your system. When the system restarts you will have the option of selecting which Hardware Profile you will use to start your system. Start it with the Videoxxx. When it comes up everything should come up the same as the original since you haven’t changed anything yet. Now open the Device manager and select each item you know that you will not need while you are doing video capture. Select your Modem, and look at the properties, at the bottom of that sheet, select “Disable the device in this hardware Profile” This will eliminate the modem, and it’s IRQ’s, and other resources from functioning in the Video hardware profile. Repeat this for all other hardware, such as Network adapters, printers, Com1,Com2,etc,. USB ports, MidI ports, joy stick ports, etc. etc. etc. Now restart your system and verify that it starts as planned. Check you “System Information” to see what has changed in IRQ’, conflicts, and shared resources, etc. (Start>Programs>Accessories>System Tools>System Information).

    If you are getting those “Evenly spaced sound gaps”, it’s because some program is interrupting the CPU during the capture and it is probably screwing up the PCI buss transfer of audio to hard disk. Make sure that your capture card and sound card do not share any IRQ’s. In fact, make sure there are no conflicts so the capture card and the sound card have all the functions they need. One way to do this is to look into the System Information (Start>Programs>Accessories>System Tools>System Information). Look under Hardware settings, where you’ll find IRQ’s and many other interesting things. If there is a conflict or sharing of IRQ’s, you should have been able to fix the using the suggestion in item 12. above. Try this and see if this changes anything on you system and if it improves your capture. These changes alone could tune your system enough to solve any problems. If not, go through the Tweaks Guide,... but make sure you change things that are going to improve your performance.


    13. “Tuning or Tweaking” instructions. Be very careful using the following Tweaking Guide, as I lost a lot of my system messing with this. I suggest that you backup your entire “C” disk using something like Norton’s Ghost program. If you think this little note I’m posting is long, wait till you download and read the Tweak Guide. It is about 10-12 pages of details instructions. It could have been written better, and a lot of it I didn’t need to (or want to mess with) use, ..but most of it really helps your system performance. A lot of the suggestions I’ve listed above came out of the Tweaks Guide.

    The link to the “Tweak guide” is ,..
    http://www.videoguys.com/WinME_Tweaks.html
    When you get this, I downloaded the entire document and then printed it out since it takes a lot of time to go through it in detail .

    14. Capturing in AVI or MPEG. One other vary important suggestion, try capturing in MMC 7.X using MPEG-2 formant, “I” frames only, at least 480x480, VBR, 15mbs, 100% motion detection. Once you have this data you can use TMPGen to convert the output into SVCD format. Depending what you need the data for you might just capture in MMC7.x in SVCD format.

    My system is a 750 MHZ (OC)Duron, 256 MB, 20 GB ATA @66 + 80GB ATA @66 , ATI AIW Radeon AGP, PCI sound card, ABIT KT7A MOBO, Via KT133 chipset, so you should be able to do better than anything I can do.

    On the “I” frames issue, don’t bother looking at the captured “I” frames on your screen. Use TMPGen to convert it to what ever you want, VCD or SVCD,... Then it will look good. The only thing I haven’t finished with is getting the filters set correctly. Also, Capturing in VirtualDub at 480x480 using Huffyuv can give excellent captured image, which can be edited and then converted to VCD or SVCD via TMPGen. I have yet to prove to myself that the 2 step process of VirtualDub +TMPEG is better than direct capture via MMC 7.5. Clearly the VirtualDub is a much larger file size and it gives you the option of multi-segment capture which is what you have to do if you want an hour of video from TV.

    Hope this helps anyone who is still having problems. BStansbury
    "Technology",...It's what keeps us all moving forward.
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  2. Thanks for this guide. A lot of people tell you to shut down unneeded programs but don't really tell you what is meant by that. Your guide is great.
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  3. Wow! I have been looking all over the net for the last month on how to set up my AIW with a VIA chipset. I think I have it figured out, but it is sure nice to have you post to check things against. My captures aren't spectacular so I will try your suggestions!

    Thanks fo a great post!!
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  4. Member
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    Originally Posted by Bstansbury
    My system is a 750 MHZ (OC)Duron, 256 MB, 20 GB ATA @66 + 80GB ATA @66 , ATI AIW Radeon AGP, PCI sound card, ABIT KT7A MOBO, Via KT133 chipset, so you should be able to do better than anything I can do.
    What kind of captures are you capable of doing with a system like that...as far as resolution, compression, sound and frame rate goes?
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    So far I have, after I finally got my system tuned and the correct drivers and software installed, I have not had any limitation on what I can capture. My favorite mode is to use MMC 7.5 in MPEG-2 format capturing "I" frames only at the max bit rate of 15 mbs, 480x480, res, with 100% motion detection. This makes a very small file compared to AVI files and I feel the quality is just as good as avi.

    Once in this format, I can use TMPGen to convert to VCD or SVCD.

    As far as various resolutions, I can capture at about any res. that is availabe in MMC 7.5.

    Hope this helps
    "Technology",...It's what keeps us all moving forward.
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  6. Does anyone have any tuning tips/tricks/suggestions for win xp?
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  7. Member
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    The information that I post above about tuning your system is still valid, however, I have created a "How To Tune your system for ATI capture" and posted it in the User Guides section of the VCDHelp forum. While it is has information about the Tweaking Guide, I found a new one for Windows XP,..

    http://www.videoguys.com/WinXP.html

    I'm sure it is as valid as the one I found on the same site for Windows ME.

    Hope this helps.
    "Technology",...It's what keeps us all moving forward.
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    Some attendants :
    I have an Abit KT7-133A Raid mobo, at which I have 2 ATA100-disks and 3 CD-devices (cdr / dvd / cdrw). At this mobo there are the default (ATA100-UDMA) IDE ports at IRQ14 (primary) and IRQ15 (secondary) also 2 IDE ports available through an onboard HPT-370 Raid-controller (IRQ handled via ACPI - 3th/4th IDE).
    To have the heighest performance I must capture using the HPT-370 bus, but should not boot from the other disk at the very same HPT-370 (disks can freeze), so 1 disk (with all the cd-devices) is connected through the default IDE-ports.
    I also have an extra IEEE1394 card, this shouldn't share a IRQ with any of the used MassStorage Controllers, neither with the capture device (which is in my case a Matrox RT-2500, which uses 3 IRQ's : 1x dynamic video controller, 1x IEEE1394 connection - this is the default DV-entrance - and 1x for the actual DV/MPEG capture board).

    It's also true that the sound-card shouldn't share an IRQ with any of these devices (mass storage, IEEE1394 and capture board). It's not a big deal if the soundcard shares an IRQ with the network-controller.

    I spend a lot of time and did many restagings to find this configuration. It seems this is now the best (but maybe I'll find better in the future).
    With capture into DV/DVCPRO at 720x576 with 48Khz audio, I didn't find many lost frames yet (and I do large captures : more than 80minutes at a time). Happily I use w2k so I can make 1 large avi-file for each capture I do (audo goes into a seperated file at the same disk for video).

    During capturing, all other applications must be closed and I should leave my system 'alone' so no interruption of me will occure, which is reason enough to create lost-frames!
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  9. I have tried most of the steps in this How to.. but I am still having some problems and I was hoping someone could help. When I capture using MPEG2 my files are being named *.mp2 and not *.mpg. When I go and try to convert my file to a SVCD format using TMPGEnc it states that my file format is incorrect. If I try to rename the file to *.mpg then TMPGEnc just blows up and gives me a bad WinXP error.

    I have also tried capturing the SVCD format directly from the ATI Multimedia Center and it seems to work alright. I was able to burn SVCD using VCDEasy and it seemed to work but the quality was not what I was hoping it would be. That is why I was trying your method. Any advice on this?

    I am on WinXP, AIW Radeon running MMC 7.6, 950MHZ Athlon, 256MB RAM.
    W Auggie H
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  10. Member lacywest's Avatar
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    Version WIN-ME 4.90.3000 Build 3000
    System Name MACH TEN
    System Manufacturer MICRO-STAR INTERNATIONAL CO., LTD
    System Model MS-6330
    ATI Radeon DDR 64 VIVO Video Card
    System Type X86-based PC
    Cpu is actually XP 1600+ ... OC in Bios. From 133 to 143
    Processor AMD Athlon(tm) XP 1800+ AuthenticAMD ~1500 Mhz
    BIOS Version Ver 1.64
    Total Physical Memory 511.44 MB
    Available Physical Memory 321.77 MB
    Total Virtual Memory 811.44 MB
    Available Virtual Memory 621.77 MB
    Page File Space 300.00 MB

    This is great reading. I've got the Radeon 64 DDR VIVO.

    For several months Fall 2001 - March2002 ... I was using ATI MMC 7.5 and also Cyberlink Power VCR II 3.0 deluxe.

    I ... was ... capturing with both programs Mpg-1 640x480 5 kbitrate.

    Video Capture was great. No frames being dropped. ATI showed 1% sometimes if I left MemTurbo 2.1 on or if I wiggled my mouse to see the capture window in ATI 7.5. So I started again ... without the wiggle. I captured Martina McBride Greatest Hits VHS Video non stop for 58 minutes ... no frame drops with ATI 7.5. Mpg-1 file was 2.3 gigs in size.
    Now ... I can't ... both programs are screwing up. ATI MMC 7.5 is showing 4% - 19% frame drops. PowerVCR shows Herky-Jerky image as I run capture.

    All the easy stuff to check is checked. I capture to a Maxtor ATA 133 80 GB HD.

    What the heck has happened ??? Video Capture now stinks.

    I'm going to replace the CPU with the XP 1800+ ... my neighbor [Sandy] says she wont mind if I check my system with her CPU ... It was me who built her system. LOL Just temporary to see if I popped my CPU.

    Check my webpage to find out who Sandy is >>> http://www.geocities.com/mach1016

    I need to get some sleep but I will do some of the tweaks in your help page and in the VideoGuys pages. My swap file "is" in a dedicated partitioned drive [700 mb within the 20GB C-Drive]. I will make that change first. I will move it to the 60 GB. I have 3 HDs ... . 180 GBs total. The other two drives are Maxtor ATA 100s. The C-Drive is a 20GB.

    I was not doing anything special to get this performance. CPU OC to 1500 and added the Maxtor ATA 133 80GB. Video Capture was great.

    Don't really know when frame drops occured ... some reinstalling of WIN ME took place in April and didn't bother checking if video capture had failed ... I reinstall same way everytime. I delete all system files/folders within DOS and I "Deltree" Windows Folder and get my clean install that way. I don't reformat the C-Drive. I use Norton Commander for DOS to browse within DOS. Every folder that has system files is deleted in Dos.
    Internet Explorer folder... windows media player folder ... common files folder ... etc ... etc.

    Can anybody help me ??? Sincerely ... Mach10

    Email is ... m4mach10@pacbell.net
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  11. Member crjackson's Avatar
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    WoW! Lotz of stuff for a newbie like me to take in. I just got the ati tv wonder card (usb) and wanted to convert all my wifes home video's (dead relitives and such) to prevent loss over time. MMC XP beta 7.xx works okay I suppose but I ALWAYS have a 2-4% drop loss.

    I haven't tried turning off everything possible yet, I didn't think of that but I get poor results with the rest of the ATI suite so I stopped using it.

    I purchased the new version of PowerVCR II 3.0 and I like it very much because it seems less buggy.

    I still show the 2-4% drops but picture quality is pretty darn nice. I'd be happy with the outcome but the longer it records, the damn audio gets out of sync with the picture.

    I downloaded VirtualDub and it seems to capture even nicer looking files and has a nice feature that say to lock audio to video to fix the sync problem.

    This seemed to be my answer except for ONE major problem. It won't capture ANY audio no matter how I hook the damn thing up.

    I've asked on other forms but no one ever replys to anything about how to use this program.

    Audio works on EVERY program I've tried (with sync problems), but I can't get a peep out of Virtual Dub..

    Can some kind sole PLEASE help my stupid ass?....

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  12. Originally Posted by Bstansbury
    -General guide
    ---snip---
    The link to the “Tweak guide” is ,..
    http://www.videoguys.com/WinME_Tweaks.html
    When you get this, I downloaded the entire document and then printed it out since it takes a lot of time to go through it in detail .
    ---snip---
    Hope this helps anyone who is still having problems. BStansbury
    Thanks for putting this Guide together *and* thanks for the heads-up on www.videoguys.com.

    Although I totally enjoy my 198hr modified TiVo that I built last summer, I was already "collecting" parts for a computer PVR to make VCDs and SVCDs [ATI AIW 128 32MB PCI, 2 Maxtor 45GB IDE 7200rpm drives, Promise/Maxtor Ultra ATA/100, Plextor 12/10/32A], so when I saw the Gateway 6400 Server deal, I hopped on it. [The TiVo is great for it's built-in Season Passes & Wishlists, and unattended scheduling via the modem-downloaded TV guides, BUT, you can't easily make VCDs from it - I know you can add an ethernet card to it, and since it's already running linux, you can communicate with it via TCP/IP, but I haven't researched what's necessary to convert it's capture files to MPEGs - *and* I don't want to take the TiVo out-of-service until I have an alternate PVR ready-to-roll!]

    It's unbelievable the amount of upfront homework one has to do in order to build a computer PVR, get it working, and then actually "author" VCDs or SVCDs to spec [my hat is off to TiVo for creating such an "independent" computer - no Windows box could run for months on end, without a reboot, WITHOUT a keyboard or a display!]. Since I've read messages that people have been successful with 400-600mHz CPUs, I foolishly thought, with a P3/933 and 2 7200rpm ATA100 drives, I could just "slap" all the parts together and it would work - HA!

    Getting the AIW to capture without GPFing was the first trick. Now, I'm onto eliminating dropped frames. Since Jan 2002, I've just about filled a 2" binder with double-sided printouts from VCDHELP, PCPHOTOVIDEO (both sites), CDRINFO, NICKYGUIDES, DOOM9, and now VIDEOGUYS.

    It's reassuring to see that other people have gotten my hardware/software combo working - just means I have to keep looking and keep trying. Haven't been able to work on it since March 2002, but got some time again now [*and* there's going to be a Farscape extravaganza on Sci-Fi in a few days], so here goes...

    Thanks again!
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  13. I am really excited about this post. I am a recreational user just trying to figure out how to turn our ballroom dance videos to DVDs. I have an ATI 128 Pro capture card and an HP DVD200i burner. I have been having a real hard time getting the capture settings on the ATI card to be consistent and acceptable. I will try the suggestions here.
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  14. Member crjackson's Avatar
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    I ordered a Pinnacle Studio 7 AV package (Studio 7 software, DC10Plus capture card).

    It all works perfect now without fussing around. Perfect capture/reproductions 1st try every time. My first DVD project was a complete success
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  15. Can I use the Pinnacle software with my ATI card?
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  16. Member crjackson's Avatar
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    Yes you can...
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  17. Okay, i am so close to finishing my first DVD, but still having problems. I have Pinnacle Studio 7, and am trying to capture 2 hours of VHS to DVD-R. I can capture from the VHS to my hard drive as an MPEG-2 file with no problems (352 x 480, at 4500 kbits/sec, with 48 khz for audio) It looks great, the sound is perfectly in sync, everything is fine! However, when I then take that file to Ulead DVD Moviefactory, and try to add the chapters, the audio gets out of sync after about 80 minutes! I haven't actually burned the DVD-R because it shows out of sync on my screen, but do you think its possible it could record okay on the dvd-r anyway? I also tried changing the audio to 41 khz, with the same result). I am using XP, Athlon 1800 AMD, 1 Gig of RAM, my capture card is ATI All-In-Wonder Radeon 32 MB DDR, and capturing my files on a RAID 150 GIG HD. PLEASE help me if you can! Keep in mind I am VERY new with this, so if I sound like a dumb ass, or left something out, let me know and I'll give you what I can. Thanks in advance guys!!!
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  18. Okay, i am so close to finishing my first DVD, but still having problems. I have Pinnacle Studio 7, and am trying to capture 2 hours of VHS to DVD-R. I can capture from the VHS to my hard drive as an MPEG-2 file with no problems (352 x 480, at 4500 kbits/sec, with 48 khz for audio) It looks great, the sound is perfectly in sync, everything is fine! However, when I then take that file to Ulead DVD Moviefactory, and try to add the chapters, the audio gets out of sync after about 80 minutes! I haven't actually burned the DVD-R because it shows out of sync on my screen, but do you think its possible it could record okay on the dvd-r anyway? I also tried changing the audio to 41 khz, with the same result). I am using XP, Athlon 1800 AMD, 1 Gig of RAM, my capture card is ATI All-In-Wonder Radeon 32 MB DDR, and capturing my files on a RAID 150 GIG HD. PLEASE help me if you can! Keep in mind I am VERY new with this, so if I sound like a dumb ass, or left something out, let me know and I'll give you what I can. Thanks in advance guys!!!
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  19. Member crjackson's Avatar
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    I use DVDit-PE to turn the mpg file into DVD files. I've had no problems. If the audio/video sync. is fine on the HD, and doesn't mess up until Ulead starts conversion, I'd guess Ulead software is to blame. Since I don't use it though, it's only a guess...
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  20. Well i noticed that there is a setting in Pinnacle where for the audio side, you can manipulate the data rate from as little as 64 all the way up to 384 kbits/sec. Perhaps that setting needs to be changed? If so, anyone know what i should us? Again, thanks to EVERYONE who's willing to help. I am ready to pull my hair out!
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  21. I used the software that came with the ati card and did what W Auggie H did - When I capture using MPEG2 my files are being named *.mp2 and not *.mpg. When I go and try to convert my file to a SVCD format using TMPGEnc it states that my file format is incorrect. - I also tried to add it to the box for vcd burn with vcd easy and can't add it , it doesn't show up in the window because of the .mp2 extention. what am I doing wrong?
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    Excellent Guide, BStansbury. I've gone through and used several of your suggestions which applied to my setup. Defintely helped with several issues I was having...

    13. “Tuning or Tweaking” instructions. Be very careful using the following Tweaking Guide, as I lost a lot of my system messing with this. I suggest that you backup your entire “C” disk using something like Norton’s Ghost program. If you think this little note I’m posting is long, wait till you download and read the Tweak Guide. It is about 10-12 pages of details instructions. It could have been written better, and a lot of it I didn’t need to (or want to mess with) use, ..but most of it really helps your system performance. A lot of the suggestions I’ve listed above came out of the Tweaks Guide.

    The link to the “Tweak guide” is ,..
    http://www.videoguys.com/WinME_Tweaks.html
    When you get this, I downloaded the entire document and then printed it out since it takes a lot of time to go through it in detail.
    This is a great site and they have a guide for Win 2K as well. However, as you stated above, back up you system before messing with the registry. I didn't and also had to re-install. Although in my case it turned out to be a good thing.

    Being a newbie, I had to try out everything. As a result I had all kinds of software on my PC. Like kids on a playground, some of the applications didn't play well together. Once I formatted and re-installed only the software and codecs I needed, I made some of the changes you recommended with good results

    Also as an FYI, the Videoguys Win 2K guide recommends turning off windows file protection while installing new drivers, software, ect. If you know you have a "virus" clean system and installation files, this is a great idea. Unfortunately the method of editing the registry only works in Win 2k until you install SP2. Then turning it off is completely disabled. This is for virus and "PEBKAC" protection. (PEBKAC=Problem Exists Between Keyboard And Chair)

    Unfortuantely windows always thinks it has the best drivers, which it usually doesn't. So if you try to install new or updated drivers, windows file protection deletes the files it doesn't like and restores the originals. This can definitely make a mess of things. When I re-installed, I noticed in the event viewer that some of the software/drivers weren't installing fully due to Windows File Protection.

    So to get around this after you install SP2, you have to edit the SFC.DLL file with a hex editor in order to use the method described. Since my new video, motherboard and sound card drivers weren't installing properly, I had to take that extra step. Lovely! MS "Plug and Pray"...

    Not for the faint hearted to say the least. But now everything is installed properly and my system is running better than ever. Although, to protect your system, I recommend the option which allows you to turn it off until your system is rebooted, not the permanently off option.

    I haven't done any rips, but with your guide and some additonal advice from KingJohn, capturing and converisons are working better than ever. I'll try a few Rips this weekend and I expect my problems with these will be gone as well.

    So thanks for taking the time to share your experiences and knowledge with us in this guide!
    Aris

    "Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."...Albert Einstein
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  23. Member
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    Ok How Do I get Getter Quality Just Viewing it. Not talking about the recording quality but just watching the viewer the Quality is Bad. Straight off my digital cable. What do I do?
    The [H]'er I get, the [L]'er she lasts
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  24. Member
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    Hi Bstansbury (or anyone else), can you give me some advice.

    I have an ABIT KX7 MB with raid
    2x 20 GB HDD (different makes)
    Pioneer DVD-RW-104
    Pioneer DVD ROM
    Liteon CDR

    My MB has 4 IDE channels but I don't know how best to setup my hardware. At the moment I have No1 HDD + DVD-RW on IDE 1, No2 HDD + Liteon on IDE 2 and my DVD ROM is not connected. The only problem I have at the moment is that the DVD-RW will not write at it's full speed.

    Thanx in advance.
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  25. Member crjackson's Avatar
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    To get best performance out of my system (Abit KG7), I boutht a Promise ATA100 controller for my hard drives to have separate channels of their own (both in set as master), and I placed my DVD-ROM on my MB IDE channel (IDE1) as master, Pioneer DVR on Secondary channel as Master.

    Only one drive on each channel works great. Also, you need to disable UDMA support on the channel you are using for the DVD-R drive. When windows boots it will set the drive to Multi-Word DMA which is plenty fast enough.

    Also to get the 2x burn with DVD-R, you have to purchase the disks that are rated at that speed. The A04 knows the speed rating of the DVD-R blanks and will only write at their certified speed in most cases.
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  26. I drop a lot of frames if I try to capture in full 720x576 25fps using virtualdub with Huffvuw.

    Ad 6)
    I don't understand this exactly: "If you have two hard disk, get windows and software on drive C, as primary on 1st IDE buss, and then set second ATA 100 disk as secondary on same buss. Put all other drives, CD-ROMs on Secondary IDE buss. "

    Do you put drive C (system) and D (video) on the 1st IDEbuss, as master(C) and slave (D).

    Using the virtualdub tools, what should my IO read write speed be, if my configuration is optimal. I believe I have around 22Mb/s - what would optimal be with 7200rpm disks?
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  27. Member crjackson's Avatar
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    Promise ATA100 controller:

    Channel 1 = C:\ set to master (Boot Drive w/OS & Software)
    Channel 2 = D:\ set to master (MISC. drive for music / videos)

    Motherboard ATA100 controller (VIA):

    Channel 1 = E:\ set to master (DVD ROM)
    Channel 2 = F:\ set to master (DVD-R Burner)

    Each cable has only one drive, and each drive is a master with no slaves attached.

    All other drives are SCSI and share the same cable.
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  28. My thoughts:

    I've been using the ati aiw models from when I first got windows 98 and was using a 16mb version. I don't particularly love them, but economically it was the best way for me to get hardware video+tv+dvd.

    Ok the stuff:
    As for the FAQ, i learned some new tricks I will try, but I do some things which might not be in the great FAQ. First, check out a process priority changing program if you are not using a capture tool which has that included (virtualdub does I think). I used avi_io to capture across multiple drives (vdub does too I believe). I noticed extremely better results (less dropped frames - 0 to be exact) when I properly adjusted some priorities. First of course dump any unnecessary programs, especially anything to do with modems and USB devices. USB is very bad for capture! So, if you have a USB cable modem, having it connected WILL cause you problems, even if you are not transferring, trust me. With a very fast cpu you might not notice as much.

    Also, you might notice that the folks at Microsoft decided, not without some benefits, to change process priority based on which process has the 'focus' (the foreground app). This means that if you say encode a video in the background and run another somewhat intensive program in foreground, you should notice your framrate decrease, then if you focus on the encoder, you see it increase again. This should affect capturing similarly. A program like avi_io and I believe virtualdub, gives options to even do things like disable menu buttons while capturing to lower cpu usage as much as possible... use these if you can.

    Now then, check out ddhelp.exe. It's a directx program and I really don't know what it does, but changing it to 'normal' cpu priority seems to help immensely (don't abort it). Change your capture priority to 'high' or equal to kernel. You probably don't want to exceed kernel speed. You may want to set to idle some things like systray and such, up to you.

    Check out your drive specs. What you need to worry about is the minimum data transfer rate. You can get this from the specs of just about any hard drive. The maximum really doesn't matter. The minimum is what causes drops when you capture. Do the math and you will know if that minimum 22MB/sec drive is going to be fast enough for you.

    Also, sound cards cause lots of problems. If you're like me, you drop frames because your sound card timing is slightly off, not that your hard drive is too slow. I can't do anything I think except try to get a new one someday, but it's about 1frame/minute for me. Check doom9.org's forum for this if you want some better advice.

    Also, of course be sure to defrag your drives and if possible use a program which can pre-allocate files to capture to. I believe when I was running an amd t-bird at around 700mhz I was capturing with no dropped frames (no audio) at 640x480 using Indeo raw (900MB/minute), or 15MB/sec. I later could capture at 640x480 using what is basically RGB (raw) video which is about 20MB/sec, or 1.2GB/minute (using an overclocked t-bird 850 and ata100 drives).

    If you are going to build a capture system, my suggestion is to pick up a raid motherboard, get a couple of identical 40GB drives or so at least ata100 (I use an old kt7-raid), and use a third smaller drive as your boot drive. RAID is perfect for capture as it basically forks the data off separately, with hardware-speed controllers, which basically comes close to halving the speed it takes to write, or in other words almost doubling your throughput. The only negative is that if one drive fails, the data would be gone. There are tools to help prevent loss of data, so it depends on how badly the drive is gone. But, with today's drives, it should be a very rare drive indeed that physically breaks on you within a couple of years time.

    Or, if you have a system you want to improve, again I would suggest replacing with a RAID motherboard, and picking up an identical drive to what you capture on now, and find a way to clean the data off and make a RAID 0 array. This requires a third drive to boot from however to be in any way reliable.

    If you don't want RAID, get at least an ata100 system (the MB has to be able to handle ata100 of course), and also make sure your RAM is 100mhz, and at this point 133mhz is pretty easy to get. Just make sure your motherboard can take all this hardware you upgrade to, otherwise it's pointless... the motherboard rules ALL hardware. So, make sure you have a system bus of at least 100mhz, hard drives at least ata66, preferably ata100 or better and a minimum data rate you can stand to use (see faq on HDs), and 100mhz SDRAM (or better - it's CHEAP now so load up if you're at 128MB or lower) Oh and I believe you want CAS2 SDRAM - make sure on it..

    I guess that's it:)

    My system:
    AMD Thunderbird 1.3Ghz cpu
    Abit Kt7-raid motherboard (kt133 not kt133A .. sigh)
    ATI AIW rage 128 32MB
    30GB Maxtor 7200 rpm ata100 HD
    2 80GB Maxtor 5400 rpm ata100 HDs in RAID 0 (150GB logical drive)
    256MB Mushkin SDRAM tested to 150MHz
    Soundblaster Live Value
    Boca research 56K modem
    Pioneer dvd drive/plextor cd writer drive
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  29. For everyone who asked why TMPG won't take the mp2 files produced by the ATI All-In-Wonder...

    Use DVD2AVI to 'frameserve' the mp2 file (just like you would for VOBs from a DVD) and also choose the 'demux all tracks" option for MPEGs to create a separate audio file. Enter the resulting .d2v file into the 'video source' slot in TMPG and your newly-demuxed audio file into the 'audio source' slot. You should then be able to convert that pesky mp2 file into whatever format you want from TMPG.

    I hope what I just typed makes sense and sounds coherent. It's a bit late and I just stumbled upon this thread, so I thought I'd contribute my 2-cents, for whatever it's worth.

    Dave
    P.S. I'm using an ATI All-In-Wonder 7500, so these instructions may or may not apply to the other models.
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  30. I have the ATI AIW 128 32mg PCI card. For some reason I can capture AVI but not mpg1 or 2. I'm running MMC 7.2 anyone else have this problem?
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