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Capturing Video

“Capturing” or transferring video from your camcorder to your PC can be mindlessly easy or maddeningly difficult.

Digital video transfer falls on the easy end of the scale. Later in this hour I'll walk you through that relatively painless process.

On the other hand, analog video capture is fraught with potential snafus. For starters, you'll need a video capture card with analog video inputs. Installing and configuring such high-end cards can be frustrating. Understanding all their snazzy features—and idiosyncrasies—can take some real effort. And you have fewer capture options with analog. I'll relate my experience with one prosumer-level card, the Matrox RT 2500.

At some point in the capture process you'll need to critically view your raw footage—selecting “keeper” clips and sequences, reviewing interviews for the best sound bites, and listening for any natural sound that will enhance your production. I'll give you a few pointers on how best to approach that. I'll also suggest a means to organize your source material to ease the editing process.

Before we tackle all that, I want to introduce you to your editing workspace. No sense diving into video capture without first gaining some familiarity with the interface.

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