Connecting for DV Capture
Before setting up for DV capture, quickly review the sections "Selecting Your Capture Drive," "Defragmenting Your Capture Drive," and "Testing Your Capture Drive" in Chapter 2.
I'm assuming that you have a FireWire connector or card installed in your computer. If you don't, start there, and make sure it's up and running. Don't spend too much on the connector; for your purposes, virtually all cards will serve equally well, from the $19 variety on up, and they all plug into an available PCI card slot inside your PC. Choosing one with at least two ports will allow you to connect both your camcorder and a FireWire hard drive, as needed, for additional storage space for your captured video.
Note that if you have an HDV camcorder, it should perform identically to a DV camcorder during capture. Specifically, you connect it the same way, and control the camera the same way as shown on these pages.
To connect your camera and computer for DV capture
- Plug in your DV camcorder to AC power. Battery power should work, but it doesn't work with all cameras.
- Make sure that the camcorder is in VCR, VTR, or Play mode.
- Connect your FireWire cable to the camera's DV connector (
Figure 3.7 The DV port on a Canon GL2 camera. Note the single analog A/V connector for composite video and both audio channels.
Figure 3.8 A four-pin (on the left) to six-pin DV cable. DV cables also come with dual four-pin and dual six-pin connectors.
- Connect the FireWire cable to your computer using one of the two slots shown on the left in
and the larger six-pin connector shown on the right in Figure 3.8. Some computers—laptops especially—come with a four-pin FireWire port installed. For these, you'll need a FireWire cable with four-pin connectors on each end.
Figure 3.9 The typical six-pin DV connectors (on the left) are found on most—but not all—computers.