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Old Jul 7, 2006, 1:18 PM   #1
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I'm new to the forum and hope I can get some help with a DVD writing problem,

I'm a satisified user of a Sanyo C5, primarily on bird hunting trips with my dogs. It's a great size, fast starting, and takes great stills along with satisfactory videos. I also enjoy being able to join and trip clips in the camera, although that's sort of time consuming. I've used the included ULead program to make a couple of DVDs but don't find this satisfactory. The clips don't play in chronological order and I get failures about half the time during the writing phase.

My "Big" camcorder is a MIniDVD and I'm able to put these clips on the hard drive of my Panasonic DVD Recorder/Writer, edit them enough to make a satisfactory DVD. So far, I've been unable to get the Sanyo MPEG4 clips into the recorder/writer and wonder if there is a way to do this. I'd like to be able to blend clips from both camcorders into my DVDs. Is this possible?

I know someone out there will have some answers to this problem. I only hope I can understand them.

Thanks folks,.....Jack
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Old Jul 7, 2006, 4:40 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forum Jack

I believe your DVD burner comes with its own DVD burning software, correct? And that is what you use to edit the video clips before burning.

The MP4 video format used by the Xacti is not popular and not widely recognized by many older video editing softwares. However, the Xacti comes bundled with its own video editing and DVD burning software called Ulead Movie Factory, which supports MP4 (and all the other usual video formats such as DV (miniDV/ DVD)). It also has all the usual editing and DVD authoring (eg. creating menus, chapters etc) functions.

You are not obliged to use the DVD software that comes bundled with the DVD burner to do the burning, there is no proprietary software for most DVD burners. I tested the Ulead Movie Factory and discover that it can join different types of video formats (it joined an MP4 and an MPG (DVD format)), therefore you can join MP4 clips with video clips you already have on your PC with this program.

Remember though: you CANNOT join the MP4 video file directly with a video clip you have on the miniDV camcorder which has _NOT_ been "captured" onto the PC yet. In this case, you still have to do it the old fashion way, hooking the miniDV camcorder up to the PC by Firewire, play the miniDV clip, and use the "capture video from video device" (the camcorder icon) in Movie Factory to transfer the miniDV to the PC, making a MPG file first. This is the beauty of modern tapeless video files like MP4 - the video file is already PC-ready and all you need to do is to transfer the file from the camcorder to the PC, rather than spending time to play the video, in real time, so that the PC can capture and create a MPG file from it.

I finally got my Movie Factory working smoothly in my PC (there were some problems with codec conflicts from codec packs I installed that kept crashing the program, now sorted out) - the Movie Factory is extremely easy to use, but you need a relatively fast computer (at least Pentium 4 1 GHz and at least 512 MB RAM) to run it smoothly, otherwise it may hang (in fact working slowly and seems like the program stops working).
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Old Jul 7, 2006, 5:52 PM   #3
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Thanks, Blindsight, for the thoughtful response. You were so clear that I think I understood most everything.

I guess what I'm hoping for is probably not possible. I'd like to be able to take the MPEG4 clips more directly to my Panasonic hard drive and view them on the TV and make DVDs, probably combining the Sanyo Videos with the ones from my regular camcorder. I don't bother putting my regular camcorder stuff into the computer. I put it right on the hard drive of the Panasonic.

The Ulead program is okay but I'm apparently not really using it properly. If I put a lot of clips onto a DVD, they go in randomly and not chronologically, making for a somewhat jumbled DVD.

My fallback position is a new camcorder, the Panasonic SDR S-100 which will load right into the Pany hard drive recorder. It's got 10X zoom and a larger screen but from what I gather the stills are not great and I think the camcorder may be a tad larger. My Sanyo takes beautiful stills......so I'm hoping to learn more and have a really workable system,.......more seamlessfrom the field to the DVD.

Thanks again,.....Jack
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Old Jul 7, 2006, 11:36 PM   #4
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I apologize. I think I misunderstood some of the things you said:

I missed the point that you have a Pana HARD DRIVE recorder, and I thought you have a Pana DVD recorder. I've never played with one of these before so my knowledge is limited.

How did you transfer your miniDV video into the HD recorder? And in what video format?

When you "load" your miniDV clips into the HD recorder, did you use Firewire and have to play the miniDV from your camcorder when the HD recorder "records" in in real time? If you have already done all these, your miniDV clips ARE in PC-ready video formats (ie. they are computer video files, probably MPG files), and you can use Ulead Movie Factory (MF) to combine them with other clips (including MP4 from the Xacti).

To combine movie clips of different types, you must use a program on a computer to do it: I don't think the HD recorder hardwired functions are sophisticated enough for this purpose.
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Old Jul 8, 2006, 4:53 PM   #5
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Blindsight,.....I don't know whether to feel smart or really stupid. I had been trying to load my mpeg4 files to the HD pany by inserting the SD card into the slot on the recorder. When I do that, it will take the stills but not the video. Finally, I decided to try.......yes, reading the manual,.....and discovered that all I needed to do was hook up the camcorder to the Pany with the a/v cables and press record on the Pany and play on the C5. I did it and it worked like a champ. I set the C5 to play all clips in sequence, which is a menu option, and they go in just like a mini DVD or mini DV. I can shorten or eliminate clips in the C5, then record them on the HD. From there the DVD making is a snap. No fancy titles or effects but good DVDs like I've made for several years. I've felt that transferring the mpeg4 files was a weakness of the Sanyo but happy to learn they had it all figured out and the weaknesswas between my ears.

Off subject, but I was looking around the web today and saw where they'll sell a Sanyo C6 for $295 and the C5 for about $230. All I can say is that everybody should have one. I think these are great little units and I hope the get the bugs out of the HD1 pretty soon. Thanks for your help,..Jack
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Old Jul 8, 2006, 11:36 PM   #6
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Glad you found a solution to the problem. In fact your method is the most direct solution to make DVDs without using a computer.

The following comment is merely technical because I am a digital media (photo and video) freak - if you find the final quality of the DVD made from your method satisfactory, you can ignore what I say below. I don't mean to be critical, I am just pointing out facts.

When you use the AV cable to hook up the Xacti (or your miniDV camcorder) to your HD recorder, as you would hook up to play the video from the Xacti/ miniDV on the TV, the Xacti converts the MP4 digital video file into analog signal to be transferred over the AV (aka. RCA) cable, to the HD recorder, where the signal is being converted back to digital (DVD format) again.

Therefore, the final quality of the DVD may be different (I suspect worse if anything) from the original quality of the MP4 file made because of one extra round of conversion (if you transfer the MP4 file via USB to a computer for DVD burning, it converts the MP4 to DVD format - that is one round of conversion).

I am not saying this is definitely a bad thing: it depends on the quality of the digital-to-analog converter of the Xacti, the quality of the AV cable (signals can be lost through subpar material), and the quality of the analog-to-digital converter of the HD recorder.

The perceived video quality also depends on the quality of your TV: I don't have a wide screen, HD or plasma TV, only a standard tube TV. When I watch the clips on TV, either played by the Xacti or burnt onto DVD, I always find the video quality "adequate" - it is completely different when I watch the video on the computer monitor, and I find the quality always poorer here. This is because the PC monitor has far higher resolution than the standard TV, compatible to wide screen TVs (except the screen is smaller). Therefore you may find even more flaws (blockiness or smudginess) on a wide screen TV which has a larger screen with higher resolution.

As long as you are happy with the final video quality, this is an effective and most simple method to get the job done.
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Old Dec 21, 2008, 5:30 PM   #7
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Hello; this is my first post;
thankyou for all the very usefull informations provided in this site and forum;

I also own a Xacti C5, and I am very unhappy about the widely unsupported MP4 format.

As known, Xacti comes bundled with its own video editing and DVD burning software called Ulead Movie Factory.
Mine is version 3.5 SE, supposed to support MP4.
But it doesn't !
Adding video files to a project, the list is: avi, mov, qt, mpg, mpeg, mpv, dat, wmv, asf, etc; no mp4;
if I select "all files" and try to select one of my mp4 files, I get the "unsupported format" error.

I'm extremely angry

Blindsight said it works; please help!!!
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Old Dec 21, 2008, 5:34 PM   #8
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devede burns stuff on dvd. burnimg to burn devede iso output to dvd. Very simple. If you want to edit, use avidemux. I have a tutorial for the hd1000 here in the fourms. Its streight forward stuff.
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