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Well, I finally got the movie transfered to disk… you don’t want to know how I did it. Okay, you talked me into it. It was extremely easy once I broke down and spent $550 for a new miniDV camera (I told you you didn’t want to know).

The way I saw it, I have all these Macs around the building that all have Firewire import, and some of them (the ones running OSX) have iMovie and iDVD which are the two primary apps necesarry to convert video to DVD. Well, I was having a bitch of a time getting my analog Hi8 footage onto the Mac in a format it could read so I finally got frustrated enough (after a week of slamming my head against a virtual wall), that I started looking at miniDV cams online. I found a SONY one that I liked and was actually cheaper than the Hi8 I bought four years ago. I fretted over it and finally HeatherEJCHeather saw the anguish on my face and took pitty up on me, allowing me to go buy it. When we got to Best Buy, we looked at the camera and it was everything I needed, but not necesarrily everything I wanted. I started evaluating the reasons I never use the camera we have now. They are as follows:

  1. No ability to import and edit video (or at least no easy, quality way)
  2. No LCD screen (I hate going to parties or vacations and walking around with a camera coming out of my face)
  3. Too big (to take it anywhere was an actual investment in time and energy)

As a result, we looked at all the cameras they had on display and started to evaluate the options. We looked at a Sharp Viewcam, a Panasonic miniDV and a Cannon miniDV. We were leaning toward the Sharp before we were informed that it was the camera most frequently brought in for repairs. Also, since it only has an LCD screen and no viewfinder, if the LCD goes out, you’re pretty much screwed. We started comparing the Cannon and the Panasonic a litlte more. The Panasonic, we were informed, has a higher CCD resolution, it was smaller, and it had a SD Card slot. Unfortunately, as a display model, the “PlastiChrome” was already peeling off and the tape door was not latching properly. Two major points off. The Cannon, had the highest optical zoom of all of the cameras on display (because digital zoom means nothing, optical zoom means everything) and it was lighter (even though it was bigger). We did finally go with the Cannon because it looked more durable and Heather’s digital camera is a Cannon and we’ve never had any problems with it. So now our new camera has the following updates:

  1. Firewire! (the ablity to import video directly into editing programs)
  2. 2.5″ LCD (so that I can see without looking like a cyclops)
  3. it’s not much bigger than my hand, can fit in my shoulder bag that I take everywhere, and even some of my pant pockets
  4. *and a surprise extra, it can convert our old analog Hi8 tapes to Digital!

So yesterday I converted the Halloween tape to digital and put it out to disk in less than 8 hours (there was a lot of fine editing to remove certain “aspects”). I feel justified! In fact the convincing moment was at about 8:15 in the morning when I plugged the camera in to the Mac and it said “Camera Found, would you like to Import video?”

All I had to do was say yes and it did the rest! Victory is mine!

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