I diligently logged and captured footage on the rest of Tape 1 and all of Tape 2 last night.
I connected my new 1 TB(!) external HD to my laptop via a FireWire 800 cable.
Next, I connected the camera to the laptop via a special cable. I haven’t really done any footage-dumping to a computer, so it’s a neat experience for me. I actually control the camera from the editing software I am using.
Anyways, the process of logging and capturing begins with logging the shots. Logging consists of marking start and end points of a shot, and giving it some sort of name. At this point your editing software stores the endpoints’ digital timecode (there is timecode on all the footage).
After you have logged some shots, you can then capture them. Basically, you’re giving the software a set of endpoints, and it will take these endpoints, find the relevant timecode on the tape, and capture the footage into a digital file.
Everything was working great, until my last capture session. I had logged about fifty clips and kicked off the batch capture process. The capture process has to be done in real time. In other words, if you have a ten minute clip to capture, it will take ten minutes to capture the clip. So, I let my computer chug for a while and came back to it around midnight.
Something is wonky with the last batch of footage I captured. Any motion on the screen goes blocky, mosaicy. The original footage does not look like this. I can’t use shots with this blockiness. It looks horrible.
I am relatively confident that my footage is okay, and there’s something else at play. Maybe I tried to capture too much footage at the same time, maybe my computer couldn’t handle it. I talked to Lance, who told me, based on my description of the blockiness-in-motion, that it might be a compression problem.
I’m going to review the footage again tonight, and recapture it if it still looks crappy, but do smaller batches of clips per capture.
Wish me luck, okay?