Digital Video Editing

Becoming the next Steven Spielberg is simple thanks to video editing on your PC.

Dealing with DVD

As DVD home entertainment systems replace the humble VCR, DV camcorder's have been suitably equipped to allow users to put their movie creations onto DVD media.

Differing formats

Disc space capacity on a single-sided, single-layered DVD is up to 4.7GB compared to the maximum of 700MB for a CD-Rom. More space means more video, making DVDs the ideal storage device as they can store more than four hours of full screen, high quality video and surround sound onto a single disc.

Up until recently, authoring DVDs had been a frustrating and expensive procedure. First you had to encode the video material into MPEG-2, a process that is exceptionally time-consuming. Next, you needed to create the appropriate menus so your home DVD player could play your video and finally, you needed to ensure that your DVD media was compatible with various competing formats.

The arrival of inexpensive dual format DVD recorders has removed many of the format issues that have hampered the widespread use of DVD authoring. Now, many of the video editing packages have the relevant tools to create a DVD movie without having to buy a dedicated DVD authoring application.

The basic process for recording a DVD disc (DVD-R/DVD+R) is similar to recording a CD-R, with the choices available including: disc at once or incremental writing.

Disc at once is the safest way to write a disc without running the risk of creating a coaster as the drive is able to consistently provide data to the disc at a consistent rate. This helps avoid buffer under-run as the PC allocates all of its resources to writing the disc.

Incremental writing is similar to packet writing on a CD, where the DVD recordable disc is written to over time, with data added to the disc until the limit is reached. The disc must be finalised before it can be read in a DVD-ROM drive or used in a home DVD player.

The best way to overcome any issues with regards to DVD formats is to go with a Dual format (DVD +RW/-RW) drive, which are readily available for around $200. Be sure not to confuse Dual format with dual layer. Dual layer technology allows you to write up to around 8GB onto a dual layer disc.

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