I would like to digitize 20 Video8 tapes recorded with a Sony CCD-TR94. That camera broke, so I acquired a Sony CCD-TR74 and am playing the tapes back. The tapes play back perfectly in the viewfinder and when connected to a TV via composite-in. However, I am running into issues digitizing the signal, and I would like help describing the problem in words.
I digitized the signal two different ways. Here's a sample video showing both attempts: https://youtu.be/FKvsZ0YqlF0
My first attempt was with an Elgato Video Capture. The frames seem to glitch and tear with rainbow-colored artifacts.
My second attempt was was a Vilcome Composite-to-HDMI digitizer. The frames are a lot smoother. But there are persistent horizontal bands of color (purple and green) on the screen.
How would you describe the visual artifacts in each? Would you recommend any equipment? I was wondering if a TBC would be appropriate, but the composite-to-HDMI gets rid of the more serious visual disturbances. This makes me wonder if there's a less expensive workaround.
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Those HDMI converters are ghastly.
And Elgato earned this nickname "Elcrapo".
That "timing" error may not actually be a timing error. What you're seeing their is likely the crappy capture cards are play. This is something those are known for.
What OS are you using? That will determine which better cards are available.
Better cards are just over $100, less than $200. You've been spending $50 or less, yes? Don't be too cheap here, you'll pay for it in other ways (bad quality, aggravation, etc)
Thanks all for the advice.
I have an iMac with Mac OS, but I have BootCamp so I also tried the Diamond One Touch VC500. That card gave me results very similar to the Elgato, with the jitter. Additionally, I tried an identical Elgato card, and got the same thing! I've also tried more obvious things like cleaning the tape head, using high-quality cables, using VDub on Windows...
Given that this is a personal project, my bar for capture quality is low. All I want to do is to capture a watchable video with the right colors. Given this goal, the HDMI converter gets me closest except the distorted colors. I am going to keep trying different things:
- Connecting the camcorder to a DVD recorder I have, recording the DVD, and converting that DVD to a file
- Buying another camcorder
- Worst-case, buying a TBC
Thanks all for the help! If anyone else can think of what else might be happening here, please please reply!
You need a camcorder with line TBC and S-Video as the output, With S-Video out 50% of the problems are solved because those Chinese crap devices don't have a functional separation comb filter in them if you feed them composite, The line TBC ensures the picture is stable enough for capturing. Get a decent capture card or device from the era of analog, Pinnacle made some decent ones. And lastly MAC and windows 10 are a bit of headache to get a legacy capture card working. Win 7 is the best.
Following up on this thread, so others in my shoes have more information.
I bit the bullet and purchased a Panasonic DMR-ES10 from eBay to act as a passthrough fake TBC. I tested it with my Elgato Video Capture card, and it completely fixed all of the signal issues! In other words, the jitter present in my initial video (https://youtu.be/FKvsZ0YqlF0) went away.
Thank you all for your advice!
Thanks for the feedback! I'm sure it will be helpful. Elgato not so elcrapo??!!
In my experience, yes, Elgato Video Capture works well enough for me. For even more detail as to how the DMR-ES10 improved capture quality, I uploaded another YouTube video with a sample of the quality. Compare capture with the ES10 (https://youtu.be/X-P3Yc_StXo) with my original attempts (https://youtu.be/FKvsZ0YqlF0).