Video Transfers to DVD or BD-R
First of all, most Blu-ray (BD-R) players will play DVDs. If you didn’t record video on an HD (High Definition) camera, there would be no benefit in transferring the video to BD-R. You will not see an improvement in quality when you transfer to Blu-ray. BR-R is Blu-ray, at least one flavor of it. A BD-R is recorded one at a time in comparison to the movie rental Blu-ray. They are mass produced and use a different technology to be recorded and played back. Not all Blu-ray players will play BD-R. Be sure and check that before you buy a player if you ever wish to see your home made movies transfered to Blu-ray.
Secondly, HD camera nomenclature is confusing as HD on the side of your camera may just mean the camera records standard video on a Hard Drive. HD video (High Definition) is a different type of video format than the old analog video. We could get into a whole page on HD, HDV, MP4, and H.264 alone, but I won’t at this time. I only mention it because true HD video requires a near super computer to handle the file size.
How fast should a computer be for video editing and transfer to DVD? If you are planning to transfer HD video to DVD through your computer, the bigger and faster, the computer the better. No one has set a min. as it would vary with many factors. (Bit rate for example and how long you are willing to wait for your transfer to DVD) Let me just say what I would like to have to transfer video files to DVD, A computer that has a Dual core, 3.3 GHz or better processor, 4-8 GB RAM, Two 7200 rpm Hard Drives (drive 2 being much bigger for video storage), HDMI / Composite Video Input Card, a Video Display Card with at least 2 GB of on board RAM, USB 2.0 or better input and a BD-R/DVD/CD Reader / Burner. Oh yes by the way, let’s throw in a multi-card reader for good measure.
Since we have been talking about Transfer HD video to DVD from an HD Camera, lets start there in lesson 1. File Based Transfers.
Here is what you will need,
Your HD Camera with power supply (not just the battery as it can fail during transfer and some cameras require being connected to the power supply to transfer files)
USB Cable (camera USB connection on one end and standard USB on the other end. Your camera should have come with that cable otherwise you will have to order it)
Your Super Computer, with a DVD Burner
Authoring software of your choice (some cameras come with proprietary software otherwise research and purchase software if your computer did not come with edit and burn software)
OK, let’s start by turning on the computer and camera. On my Computer I already have a pre-made folder on Drive 2 where I store all my video files named CaptureTemps. Within that folder I have additional folders with my customer’s names on them. You may want to name the folder by date or up to date*. If you don’t have a second drive you can store the folder on your main drive however this may slow the whole process down a bit.
Plug in the USB cable, (camera computer, computer camera doesn’t matter) Wait to see what happens at this point. In a lot of cases the camera will show a requester on the screen asking what you wish to do? Select the USB CONNECT option. On the Computer you may also see a requester. Select OPEN FILE then select all the video files and copy them to your pre-made folder.
Where would you find the video files? That’s a fair question! Open the camera's main folder on the computer and then look for the video files. They may be in a AVCHD folder, a BDMV folder or a Video Folder. You can tell the video files by their size. They will be the ones with the largest file size sometimes with a .MOV, HDV or a MP4 suffix. If you take still pictures with your video camera their files may have a .JPG suffix. You may want to save them to a different folder.
The final step in transfer to dvd is to open your Video Authoring / Burning Program and load in the video files you just saved from your camera. Instructions to burn a DVD will very by the brand of software you will be using. See the programs help files for instructions.
Here it comes, the plug for cameratransfer.com If you get stuck at this point you could always transfer those video files to a USB stick or drive and send them to us for Transfer to DVD or BD-R.
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By Tex Bynum