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Beginners guide to
PC video editing
|If you're new to
PC video editing then knowing where to start can be a bit
daunting, so hopefully this guide will point you in the right
To start with you will need a few items of equipment
Depending on your requirements or aims there are number of different
solutions to discuss, so i will split these up into separate
1.If you are starting from new then i recommend buying a new digital
camcorder, this will give you superior video and sound quality
as well as making getting started in video editing very simple,
so ideal for the beginner. There are thousands to choose from
catering for various types of budgets.
2. You may already have an old video deck or camcorder which uses the old
analogue outputs such as composite or s-video (be sure to check
first what outputs you have).
For this kind of setup you would need a capture card/analogue to digital
converter, this is discussed in more detail further on in the
A PC for Video Editing
It is now possible to easily capture footage from your Digital Camcorder
directly to your PC and edit it.
If you looking at buying a new PC or building a new one then the currents
spec's are more then powerful enough ,a typical spec PC these
days is a P4, 512Mb Ram, 80Gb HDD, Windows XP or something along
You could always use your existing PC if you have one, but i wouldn't
recommend using anything below a PIII 600.
When transferring video from your camcorder to your PC there are a number of
additional things to consider depending on the type of camcorder
If you’re using a digital camcorder then all your need is a firewire card
(also known as an IEE1394 card), a lot of current PC's have
these as standard now, otherwise you will need to purchase the
card separately. Some of these will come bundled with editing
software such as Adobe Premiere but this really depends on which
card you buy and how much you spend, once your camcorder is
connected to your firewire port windows will automatically
recognise your Digital Camcorder.
If your using the old analogue camcorder then you will also need an analogue
to digital converter, see the section on video editing cards
Its worth considering your Pc's Processor speed, the speed will effect the
rate your video will encode, encoding is where your DV video
clips are converted into a more compressed format, for example
DVD's are encoded to MPEG2. So the faster the better really.
Also consider the amount of RAM in your PC, 256Mb would be the
Extra Hard Drive Storage
Its worth considering having an extra dedicated drive for your video
footage, remember that five minutes of DV footage uses 1GB of
hard drive space so consider a large capacity hard drive such as
an 80Gb or 120Gb, also consider the disk drive RPM, at least
7200RPM would be recommended.
If your PC supports it (most new ones do now), then a Serial ATA (SATA)
drive will offer increased date transfer rates of up to
150MB/sec compared to 100 or 133 offered by the IDE drives, you
may also consider a SCSI drive if you’re PC has an SCSI adapter
If your planning on putting your film onto CD-ROM (VCD), or DVD then a CDRW
or DVDRW is an essential piece of kit, most new pc's may have a
CDRW or DVDRW as standard, to burn your DVD, you'll need DVD
Video Editing Cards
If you have and older analogue video camera/deck then an analogue USB or PCI
capture cards will suffice.
These dedicated analogue to digital converters take process of conversion
away from the CPU and therefore speeds up transfer.
If worth getting a quality capture card as the cheaper cards can produce
The Video Editing Software
This is where all your creative work starts and the creative work starts,
you can capture video from your camera, edit the captured clips,
arrange them into a sequence, add transitions, credits and a
soundtrack, titles and when your ready export your movie back to
the camera or a suitable encoded file format (DVD, VCD etc).
About the author:
http://www.avmechanic.co.uk, offering a free friendly
helpful community for anybody that needs computer help or help
with PC editing products.