On Thu, 08 May 2003 00:13:39 GMT, Erik Harris <n$wsr$ader@$harrishom$.com> wrote:

>On 7 May 2003 06:20:40 -0700, rfremmer@hotmail.com (googlefan) wrote:


>>I'm wondering if I can connect a dv camcorder via 1394 connection to a

>>set top DVD recorder and have it convert the MPEG4 format on the

>>camcorder to the MPEG2 format for DVD-R.  Anyone know if this can be



>First of all, if it's a DV camcorder, the video footage isn't MPEG-4, it's

>DV, which bares more resemblance to MJPEG than MPEG4.


>Second, you should have no trouble "converting" MPEG4, DV, or any other

>format to MPEG-2 with a standalone DVD recorder, but probably not with a 1394

>connection.  A DVD recorder will record any analog video signal and encode it

>in MPEG-2.  Since your camcorder has a video out option, you can record its

>decoded output and encode that to MPEG-2.  It's a much lower quality solution

>than doing it on a computer, though (and if you really _mean_ MPEG-4 video on

>a DV camcorder, I'm expecting that to be pretty low-quality video stored on a

>memory card, as opposed to the normal tape-based recording mode of the



>I haven't kept up on standalone DVD recorders (because I don't personally see

>the need for one when I can pay a good deal less to get much better results

>with a bit more work on my computer), but I'm not aware of any that have

>MPEG-4 or DV decoders to allow more "direct" conversion options than what I

>described (analog video hookup).

>Erik Harris                            n$wsr$ader@$harrishom$.com

>AIM: KngFuJoe                          http://www.eharrishome.com

>Chinese-Indonesian MA Club      http://www.eharrishome.com/cimac/


Panasonic offers several models of stand-alone DVD

recorders with varying features, running from $400

to $825 (discount). The bottom-end one has an "S"

input, which should be sufficient for excellent

quality; the top-end one has a FireWire input and

an HD, permitting storage of MPEG2-encoded files.

I recently tried several software MPEG2 encoders,

including some that permitted variable bit-rate and

multiple passes (one of the latter unfortunately

crashed, so I could not see its output, but it

*could* be the best of all, if a bit of a "pain"

to use - but the two-pass VBR CinemaCraft Basic

results were not satisfactory to me [too soft

throughout]). I also tried the Panasonic with the

FireWire input (real-time encoding). The

best-looking results from the most difficult

sections of the test material (1-hour/disk mode)

from all that I could get to work were from the

Panasonic, though for most parts of the test

video, most of the others were very nearly equal.

Surprisingly, the lowly MyDVD that came with the

cheap CenDyne (Pioneer in disguise), when not run

real time, was as good as any tried but for the

Panasonic. If I could justify the $825 for the

Panasonic DMR-T3040, that is the way I would go,

since I do not want to spend the time

multi-pass-encoding MPEG2 with software unless

the results are obviously better than with the

Panasonic. This is unlikely, since my test was

TOUGH, and the Panasonic handled it well. (The

hardest part to encode was sharp footage of a

flower garden in full-bloom, with the camera

panned and tilted as it was moved through a gate

in a detailed stone wall - and most of the

encoders did not handle this very well...)