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Old 07-19-2009, 07:39 AM   #1
Fizzmatix
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A Guide to Capturing Gameplay

A Guide to Capturing Gameplay


You have probably stumbled across this thread as you're curious about making your own videos. This article will guide you through setting up your capture device, and the general basics of what you need to do to capture your gameplay.If you want to take the more advanced steps towards gameplay capture, please only use this guide for reference. If you damage your computer, console or any other hardware, I take no responsibility for your actions.

Introduction


Before we start your going to need a few things:
  • A computer (Pc, Mac, Laptop)
  • Xbox 360 Console
  • A capture device (There are several listed below)
  • Assorted cables (these are an added extra for some devices)
  • Editing Software
  • Video Hosting (Youtube, Vimeo)
Before we continue, I cannot provide technical information for any of the items mentioned in this article. If you do need to seek technical advice, please use the websites provided next to the hardware listed below.

Your Computer & Console:
You don't need the worlds most powerful computer to record videos, but having a computer with a fair amount of RAM and a big hard drive is a must.

Most of the footage you will capture will be encoded by the capture devices it's self. Then re-encoded and transferred to your computer to capture. All capture devices use this method, unless you buy the more advanced cards. Because of this method you will see a slight delay (latency) between your gameplay and capture on your computer. You can find out more about latency below.

To get the best performance and quality I recommend the following hardware and specs. You can use lower specs but the results may vary depending on your computers processing power.

Computer Spec Recommendation:
  • 2gbs of ram
  • 2ghz processor
  • 100gb internal hard drive
  • 200 - 1tb external hard drive
These setting are based loosely off my own specs. As mentioned before, you can use a lower spec, but results may vary. Especially with the more demanding capture cards.

Latency/Delay/Tearing:
You may run into several issues while capturing. The biggest being latency. Latency is caused by the device having to encode one signal, then passing the signal to your computer. The capture will always have a second delay unless you use internal cards. To bypass this issue you will need to split the signal, some units and devices do have a pass-through which will allow you do this with ease, other devices will require extra cables and splitters.

Another issue that you might run into is video tearing. If you don't have enough system resources you may encounter poor encoding which will cause visual lines (known as tears) within your video. Some games do suffer from screen tearing due to the game not utilizing the system hardware properly. This is quite common on the more graphically demanding games.

If your system can't keep up with the capture device, you may experience tearing within your encodes due to a slow data transfer. If you want to avoid tearing in your video captures, always make sure you follow the system requirements provide by the developer of the hardware.

HD vs SD:
There are two formats that you will need to deal with. One being High Definition, the other is Standard Definition. Almost all next gen consoles out in HD and SD, depending on your preference will result in what format you want to use.

Though Standard Definition is becoming less commonly used, a lot of the capture devices out there will only support SD. If you want to use capture a HD output you will need to spend a little extra to get the results you want.

The big difference between HD and SD is the quality. Normally SD recordings results in a much softer, less defined quality video, where as HD will normally be clear, crisp and result in a far cleaner video capture. Most of these results will vary depending on what device you use to capture your signal. If you split an SD signal it will degrade the quality of the output slightly, so if you can use a device with a pass-through I recommend it.

Video standards have changed a lot over the years, one of them being the aspect ratio that you video them. 16:9 is slowly becoming the most widely used ratio of 4:3. A lot of the older SD videos would only record in 4:3, where as with the newer digital technology is pushing 16:9 as the new standard.

If you are want to keep up with today's standards, most software will let you. Though SD is becoming less common, you can still capture fairly decent videos at a responsible price. I recommend if you're software supports 16:9 capture, you record all your videos this way. Seeing as most games will output in some sort of widescreen format, recoding in a 4:3 aspect ratio may produce a weird proportion video.



See this article about aspect ratios.

Capture & Editing Software:
Most hardware will come with some sort of basic capture software. Not every piece of software is ideal for what you want. I've found most bundled software either doesn't produce the results you want, or has a very limited set of features. You can use almost any video capture software to record video, so here are a few that you can try yourself:

Mac Software:
  • Final Cut Pro
  • iMovie
  • Quicktime pro
  • EyeTV 3.1+
PC Software:
  • Adobe Premier
  • Sony Vegas Studio
  • Pinnacle Studio
  • Windows Movie Maker
  • Ulead Video Studio
  • Amcap
There are lots of alternatives out there, this list covers the basic and more advanced, but most common software.

Capture Hardware

Which one is right for me?
So it's time to decide which piece of hardware you want. There are many to choose from, some produce far better results than others. This decision all depends on how much money you want to spend, what sort of output quality you want, and how serious you are about making videos.

Slingbox
Website: www.slingbox.com
Slingbox Pro HD
Supports: Windows XP/Vista, Mac
Output: HD (Composite, Network, USB 2.0)
Cost - $299
Hauppauge
Website: www.hauppauge.com
Hauppauge HD PVR 1212
Supports: Windows XP/Vista, Mac (Required EyeTV 3.1+ for Mac use)
Output: HD (Component, USB 2.0)
Cost - $210 - $250
Blackmagic
Website: www.blackmagic-design.com
Intensity Pro
Supports: Windows XP/Vista, Mac
Output: HD (HDMI, Internal Card)
Cost - $199

Before you buy this device, make sure your xbox supports HDMI outputs. If your console doesn't have a HDMI output you will have to opt for a component supported device.
Intensity Shuttle
Supports: Windows XP/Vista, Mac
Output: HD (HDMI, Component, USB 3.0)
Cost - $199
Black Magic Video Recorder
Supports: Windows XP/Vista, Mac
Output: HD (Composite, USB 2.0)
Cost - $149
Elgato EyeTV
Website: www.elgato.com
Elgato Eyetv 250 Plus
Supports: Mac
Output: SD (Composite, USB 2.0)
Cost: $199.95
Elgato EyeTV Hybrid
Supports: Mac
Output: SD (Composite, USB 2.0)
Cost: $149
Elgato Video Capture
Supports: Mac
Output: SD (Composite, USB 2.0)
Cost: $100
Pinnacle
Website: www.pinnaclesys.com
Pinnacle Movie Box
Supports: PC
Output: HD* (Composite, USB 2.0)
Cost: $149

* The inputs on this device only support the standard RCA inputs but claims to record in HD. You will end up with good results but they won't be true HD results.
Pinnacle Dazzle
Supports: PC, Mac (also known as Video Creator Plus)
Output: SD (Composite, USB 2.0)
Cost: $40 - $100
Easycap
Website: www.szforwardvideo.com
Easycap DC60+ (also known as EzCap)
Supports: PC
Output: SD (composite, USB 2.0)
Cost: $10 - $50
If you're considering this piece of hardware due to it's low cost, I would recommend that you try another piece of hardware. The overall quality and production value of this hardware is very unstable. Sometimes the devices will stop working and become temperamental. You may also have to fight with several pieces of software to get the results you want.

Additional Hardware:
If you have decided to use the Easycap, Dazzle or the Elgato products you will also need the follow cables to split the signal between your TV and computer/laptop.
  • 2x Female Mini RCA splitter
  • 2x Standard Video cables (Red, White & Yellow Connectors)
  • TV & Possibly a laptop.
Why do i need these cables and splitters?
With most of these capture devices, they are designed to record analog signals directly to your computer. As most devices have a slight delay on their encoding to increase the quality of the output, you won't be able to play in real time through your computer.

To resolve this issue, you will need to split your signal between the device, TV and computer. This may degrade the overall capture quality, but there is no other way to to use these devices for this method otherwise.

Last edited by Fizzmatix; 08-25-2010 at 08:34 PM.
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Old 07-19-2009, 07:39 AM   #2
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Setting Up your Device

Once you decide which device you want, the first step will be setting it up once your device once you have it. Depending on which device you decided on will depend which route you have to take to set it up.

There are a few basic steps to take if you decide to go with the general SD based devices.

What is the difference between a pass-through and a split connection?
If you picked a device with extra outputs known as a pass-through, you will be able to connect your console to the front of the device. Once connected you will be able to use a second set of composite cables to attached the ports of the back of the device to the TV. If this is the case you will be able to play in real time and connect the capture device to your PC via USB.

If you don't have the extra ports on the back of the unit to pass-through to the TV, you will need to split your consoles signal between the device and TV. To do this you will need two sets of composite cables (the red, white and yellow cables) and two male to female cable splitters.

The only difference between these two methods are down to one having a built in option, the other requires extra cables and connectors. The final results with a pass-through will also be higher than splitting your signal.

Setting up a Standard Definition connection

If your device has a pass-through or doesn't require you to split the signal between your capture device and TV, please proceed to the next installation section.

If you picked a device with only one set of RCA inputs (Red, White and Yellow) you will need to complete the following simple steps to be able to produce playback and record at the same time.

Step 1: Software & Drivers
Install all your software and required drivers. Then set them side for a moment while you connect all your cables to the device.

Step 2: Xbox to Splitters
Plug in the component/composite cables into your xbox. Then change the SD/HD switch on the console input to SD. You will need to plug in one female to male splitter into the yellow and one of either the white or red xbox output cables. You can use extra cables if you want to record in stereo, but it's not required. The audio cables are red and white, your video output is the yellow cable.

Step 3: Splitters to TV
You will now need to take your first set of extra RCA cables and plug the yellow cable into the corresponding yellow output splitter. Do the same with the audio but use match either the red or white cable to the one you plugged into the other splitter. You will now want to plug these extra cables into your TV.

Step 4: Splitters to Device
You will now need to do the same to take your second set of RCA cables and plug them into the other splitter connections, then to the capture device.

Step 5: Final connection
You can now connect your device to your computer and select the software you want to use to capture your footage.

Your connections should look a little something like this:


If your having trouble with this setup you can also refer to this video for further guidance.

NOTE: This video also suggests an alternative method of using your TVs audio/video outputs. Not all TVs have this function. If you don't have these outputs on then your only option is to split the signal like the above diagram.


Setting up a SD pass-through connection

As a pass-trough only requires one extra set of cables you won't have to worry about your signal quality or having to buy loads of extra cables and splitters.

Step 1: Software & Drivers
Install all your software and required drivers. Then set them side for a moment while you connect all your cables to the device.

Step 2: Connecting the xbox to the device
Plug in the component/composite cables into your xbox. Then change the SD/HD switch on the console input to SD. You can now plug your RCA (Red, White and Yellow) output cables into the input on your capture device

Step 3: Device to your TV
Take a second set of RCA cables (Red, White and Yellow) and plug them into the corresponding ports on your TV.

Step 4: Final Connection
You can now connect your capture device to your computer and use your software of choice to capture your footage.

Component HD Pass-Through

Some devices such as the Hauppuage HD PVR support component inputs and provide a pass-through connection. Unlike Standard Definition you will be able to record in HD from your device to your computer.

Step 1: Software & Drivers
Install all your software and required drivers. Then set them side for a moment while you connect all your cables to the device.

Step 2: Connecting your Xbox
Plug in the component/composite cables into your xbox. Then change the SD/HD switch on the console input to HD. You can now plug all your component cables into your device. This time around you won't need to connect the yellow RCA cable to the device.

Step 3: Device to TV
You will now need to connect your capture device to the TV. Must like the previous setups you will be using extra cables to connect the device to the TV. Though this time you will be using component cables instead.

Step 4: Device to computer
You can now connect the device to your computer via the USB cable.

These units are quite simple to setup and don't require much to produce a decent output. If you are still having issues setting up the unit you can follow this video:


Direct connection Setup

If you have gone with the higher end devices you will have a far easier time setting up your hardware than any of the previous steps. There are several ways to to go about capturing from different consoles, but this is the most direct.

These devices should only be installed by someone who knows their way around a computer. If you have little experience with installing PCI card or any internal based card, I suggest you seem a professional to install it for you. I take no responsibility for you causing damage to your own system.

Step 1: Installing your card
Before you can start you will need to disconnect your computer, open the side and locate your PCI ports. You will need at least one port free to support an internal card.

Step 2: Hardware setup
Once you have the card installed boost your computer and install the required drivers and software provided.

Step 3: Connecting your Xbox and TV
For this next step you will need an Xbox that supports HDMI output, most Elites ship with this port. Plug your xbox into the HDMI input on your capture card, then connect another HDMI cable to the output port on your card and run it to your TV.

You're now ready to use your new card and capture gameplay from your xbox, or any other HDMI supported system.



Last edited by Fizzmatix; 08-25-2010 at 08:33 PM.
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Old 07-19-2009, 07:40 AM   #3
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Software Settings & Setup

At this point you will have your device setup and ready to record. If everything is connected properly, and your drivers are setup, you should see your capture hardware within your software settings.

Once you open your software, you will need to configure your output settings. Not all software will look the same, but they general settings should be close, or the same. The following are the best settings to record with if you want to get the most of your videos, and youtube.

General HQ Settings

Xbox 360 Settings:
  1. Set your output to widescreen 16:9 unless you prefer the 4:3 aspect ratio.
  2. Change the composite to either HD or SD on the console plug at the back.
General HD Settings:
  • Audio: 128kbs
  • Codec: AAC
  • Bit Rate: 10mbs Variable
  • De-interlace: Progressive Scan
  • Res: 1280 x 720 (720p HD)
These settings are more of a suggestion, though if you can't replicate them fully, you should be able produce fairly decent results following these guidelines.

If you use a resolution lower than 1280 x 720, your outcome won't be considered as a true HD format. Once you have configured everything and set your destination paths, you're now ready to start capturing.

Encoding requirements for youtube:

For the highest quality, YouTube recommends these setting for your video:
  • H.264, MPEG-2 or MPEG-4 format
  • 1280x720 resolution
  • 44.1KHz Stereo MP3 or AAC audio
  • Frame rate as the original video
  • Up to 1GB file size and 10 min. duration
However, YouTube accepts a wide range of video file formats such as .WMV, .AVI and .MOV. Again, you may get the best results from converting your file to MPEG4 video with AAC audio.


Setup Walkthrough

Where to start?
When you start your software for the first time, you may be prompted with a wizard, or some sort of guidance to setting up your hardware. I recommend you follow these steps as normally the software will set everything up with just a few clicks.

If you do follow some sort of wizard or setup steps, you will probably be ready to record once you finish the setup process. Some software will require you to setup everything manually, or have some sort of import/capture options instead.

Manual Capture:
Start out by either using a wizard to capture your video, if you don't have this option you will capture from the File > Import/Capture > Capture Video.

You will probably see this screen in many different forms, but there will always be some sort of capture/import option. Once you press capture you should see some sort of preview windows while you're playing. The black windows in the image below is where you should see your capture.

The following screenshots are taken from Ulead VideoStudio, most software will look fairly different, but have the same options and results.


The next screenshot is a very basic breakdown of what you may see while using the capture/import option of your software. Most are general settings, but the format and options are the ones you will want to pay the most attention to.

Note: Make sure you use the right region and codecs. If you're in Europe or the UK make sure you use PAL as your default region and NTSC for the USA. There are several other settings for the various regions around the world, just make sure you use the corresponding one for your region.


Under your options you will be faced with many different settings such as output format, interlacing/de-interlacing, quality, frame rate, bit rate and a few other things.

Tearing:
You may notice once in a while that your game or video has a sharp shift in the image. This normally looks like someone cut a line across the screen and dislodged the top and bottom parts of the line slightly. This is caused by your hardware not being able to keep up with capture. If you use a very low end system it may become fairly common within your captures, but this also happens in games as well. Which you have no control over. If you do encounter tearing within your videos, but not while playing the game, you may want to lower some of your settings.

Lacing:
You may have heard of this before, you may have not. Lacing is more commonly used within TV broadcast, you may have also see the "i" at the end of the various TV formats. Interlacing your video output isn't necessary. You should always make sure you're recording in a progressive format, and make sure you're using any of the "p" based formats.

If you do decide to record in an interlaced format to capture a larger video output, you will need to De-Interlace your video after you're done. You may notice an option within your software called De-Interlace output, always tick this just in case your software decides to override the consoles settings.

If you record a video in an interlaced format by mistake you can use Handbreak to fix the output, just be warned that this can take a while depending on the length of your video.

Quality:
Some devices will produce fairly low quality outputs, mostly commonly fuzzy or pixelated visuals. If you have any control over this try and use the highest quality settings you can to ensure you get the best out of the device.

Frame Rate:
This can cause a lot of issues for people who don't know enough about video in their own region. You may find that you get a video source, or black and white visuals while trying to record. If so, you could be recording in the wrong region settings.

Most people don't take their framerate into account when they set up their device. So if you're having issues make sure you're using the following settings for your region, UK (PAL 25fps), USA (NTSC 30fps).

Framerate will related so how fluent your game/video plays. If you see a jerky or slow down in how your game plays. This is caused by a drop in the framerate. Some games, depending on their age may cause a drop in the framerate due to poor coding. This is also fairly common in newer games due to the highly intensive visuals. There isn't much you can do about this as you can't control your games output.

Bit Rate:
Your bitrate is relative to your audio and video quality. The higher your bitrate, the bigger your videos will be. If you want the highest quality video possible, using the highest settings possible will produce an outstanding result. But this will also mean your videos size will increase as well. Using a 5 - 10mb bitrate will produce decent results, if you're pressed for space I recommend you use no more than 5mbs, but no less than 2mbs.

You may also fine two other options related to your bitrate, one being Constant Bitrate (CBR) and Variable Bitrate (VBR). The only difference between the two is quality. CBR is used for streaming media over the internet and other streaming sources. VBR will produce a slightly higher quality but not stream so well. VBR will produce higher quality videos, but with a bigger file size. You may want to try out either of these settings to see which produces the best results for your video.

Last edited by Fizzmatix; 09-12-2010 at 08:20 PM.
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Old 07-19-2009, 07:40 AM   #4
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The Editing Stage

This next step might be a little daunting to some people, but it's the most interesting and fun part about the whole capture process. It's the part where you get to turn your capture into something you can share with everyone.

At this point you should have your exported video ready to import into your editing application. You may be using the same software you used to capture. Before we start cutting bits of your video, there are a few basic do's and don'ts that you may want to run through before you start.

Do's and Don'ts

What should I do?
  1. Always keep a copy of your original file until you're happy with your result.
  2. Keep your video simple, don't overdo the effects.
  3. Make sure your video shows your viewers what to do, or what you want to show.
What shouldn't I do?
  1. Save over your original file.
  2. Add loads of over the top effects, cuts and music.
  3. Cut out important clips or sections.
The software basics:
Most editing software contains loads of extra features which your not going to use unless you feel like being adventurous.

Once you have fully recorded your clip you may want to edit and add headings, music, pictures and export the movie to a final usable forum containing your alterations.

Timeline:
The first thing you will notice is the timeline which contains your video(s). Depending on the software and tools provided you will either cut parts out using a slice tool or select the areas you don't want and delete them.

You be using the timeline for everything including music, titles etc. Some software applications allow you to layer videos and add effects but that will come later once you get more involved with your videos.

Titles:
I find it best to keep videos simple, a simple title of whatever your showing and a subtitle with explanations. No flashy effects but that's a personal choice, simple is always better when it comes to text, but don't over do it.

Music:
This is down to your personal taste, if your making an achievement guide it's probably best to leave out your own music and just use the audio on the clip you recorded. If your making a montage use any music you see fit, having a full 5 minute montage of game sounds and noises can be a little boring. It's all about balance and knowing when to use it and when not to.

Exporting:
Obviously this is the last stage to your video, if you want your video to look the best it can for everyone else use the setting above or export it with the highest quality settings you can. I have learn through different pieces of software to set the bit rate of your video to around 2000 to keep the quality high enough but without running into huge file sizes.

Depending on the quality of your video will also depend on the size, if your concerned about upload times and size of files and space you can also skimp on a few settings and play with default outputs to drop the file size. Experimentation is key when it comes to exporting videos as you may find a better way to get good quality that I haven't.

Here is a basic example of what your video could look like, this video is basic, made up of a few clips with a title and music.

Last edited by Fizzmatix; 09-12-2010 at 09:09 PM.
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Old 07-19-2009, 07:41 AM   #5
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Last edited by Shinobi273; 08-26-2011 at 12:39 AM.
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Old 07-19-2009, 11:26 AM   #6
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Does EasyCap DC60 v2.1c work? It's the only one I can afford nowadays :P

Here are some comparing to the other versions:

edit: Just found out that there is a 3.1b for only 20€ when 2.1 is 15€.
I'm getting the 3.1b when I get some money and then try this guide

edit2: Are these necessary:

- 2x Female Mini RCA splitter
- 2x Standard Video cables (Red, White & Yellow Connectors)
- TV & Possibly a laptop.

?
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Old 07-19-2009, 07:07 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jappe66 View Post
Does EasyCap DC60 v2.1c work? It's the only one I can afford nowadays :P

Here are some comparing to the other versions:

edit: Just found out that there is a 3.1b for only 20 when 2.1 is 15.
I'm getting the 3.1b when I get some money and then try this guide

edit2: Are these necessary:

- 2x Female Mini RCA splitter
- 2x Standard Video cables (Red, White & Yellow Connectors)
- TV & Possibly a laptop.

?
The easycap works but it's not perfect and far from amazing, it's also irritating to setup. I do own one but it causes me more hassle than it was worth to setup and get working.

The extra cables are to set up the units so you can playback through your tv without a delay, almost all capture devices will have around a 1/2ms delay on the screen so you will either get annoyed or find the game unplayable. using the Easycap and Amcap capture has a very minimal delay though.
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Old 07-20-2009, 01:01 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fizzmatix View Post
The easycap works but it's not perfect and far from amazing, it's also irritating to setup. I do own one but it causes me more hassle than it was worth to setup and get working.

The extra cables are to set up the units so you can playback through your tv without a delay, almost all capture devices will have around a 1/2ms delay on the screen so you will either get annoyed or find the game unplayable. using the Easycap and Amcap capture has a very minimal delay though.
1 or 2 ms delay?? That's not a lot I'll tell ya. I played GH:GH for about 30 minutes with 33ms delay and it wasn't even bad yet
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Old 07-20-2009, 05:32 PM   #9
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If you can put up with it go for it :P, personally id rather play without the lag but then again I use the hauppauge so it's setup with a loop without all that crazy stuff going on.
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Old 08-05-2009, 09:49 AM   #10
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Okey, I got the EasyCap now and still need the RCA splitters and AV-cable(s), but can't find them anywhere... Is there any shop on the net that sell these?

edit: Don't you need a splitter for the white wire too?
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Old 08-06-2009, 10:20 PM   #11
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Well if you want to split the white audio source you can but it's just extra money you will have to spend for another cable and splitter which isn't really required. Your going to be capturing mono audio rather than full stereo but it will sound the same once your done anyhow.

Depending on where you are in the world you can find most splitters and audio cables either on amazon or in your local audio/electronic stores. In America you can find them in radio shack and most general consumer stores like walmart. Macros sell them also in the uk and Europe but.

Sorry I haven't had much time to add more to this post as I have been bogged down with a few guides im working on.
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Old 08-07-2009, 09:01 AM   #12
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Okay, I watched
video on YouTube and it shows that you only need one red-white-yellow male-male wire if you have output on your TV and I think I have one in mine, so I bought 2 of those wires on the net for 5 so it's not much. So it's cheaper than buying those splitters etc. I'll try it with the output and if it doesn't work then I'll have to buy the splitters
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Old 08-09-2009, 06:03 AM   #13
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I don't have a tv which will output the standard RCAs like that, if you do, it will work fine. In general most tvs don't out red/yellow/white inputs and a second set for outputs. Well i haven't seen any unless there on really cheap tvs.

You only really need to split the signal so you can play on the console and get a real time output. You can plug the console straight into the easy cap but you get a delay is all. If you can put up with the delay and making mistakes you wouldn't while playing normally it shouldn't be an issue.

You can setup the easy cap with just the console to test out your setup and connections to make sure its all working though, you may as well be sure.

I had such dreadful results with the easy cap though, here is a video from my first few test on stoked a while back before i bought a hauppauge.


As you can see it's nothing to brag about but it does work if you can get it setup.
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Old 08-10-2009, 02:30 AM   #14
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Hey guys can anybody actually tell me the purpose of splitters other than that you can play on your tv whilst recording on your computer?
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Old 08-10-2009, 02:51 AM   #15
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Hey guys can anybody actually tell me the purpose of splitters other than that you can play on your tv whilst recording on your computer?
That's basically it, to play without a delay. When you plug the console straight into most capture devices you will get a delay between what you do in real time to what the device shows you on the screen.

So say you walk forward in a game, about 1 - 2 even 5 milliseconds after that you will move on the screen. Splitting the signal allows you to play in realtime and record what you doing.

You don't have to do it that way but you would soon be sick of having to record bad videos of you stopping and starting ever 3 seconds to see what your doing.

The only bad thing about splitting is sometimes the signal has static or interference, well mine did anyhow. All i can suggest if you have the money is to buy a device which has a pass through and gives you the option to not split cables but to use bypass cables instead.
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Old 08-10-2009, 08:19 PM   #16
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I just got a dazzle 170 does the job nicley

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Old 08-12-2009, 04:15 AM   #17
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I'm still kinda debating which kind of cap card to get and need a lil help. I have a mac and would like decent quality but i play on a sd tv (not sure if that effects it or not). I've looked at the elgato but all the reviews say that its not really all that great and from the dazzle reviews im not sure wat kind i shuld get. price is not that much of an issue. just wondering if someone could help me out on this.
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Old 08-12-2009, 05:56 AM   #18
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The eyetv unit will give you better quality than a dazzle, the software it comes with is simple also. I use their software for my hauppauge. It really depends on what money you have to spend really. There are other options i just covered the main units out there.
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Old 08-12-2009, 08:40 AM   #19
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The Dazzle I have also, doesn't support PAL60, but there is a way round that, by using AMCap as well.

The Dazzle works great for capturing thoughj, since the game I use msot for capturing can be used in PAL50 so I have no problems. If I had the money I would invest in a better capture card but Im happy with what I have.
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Old 08-12-2009, 01:23 PM   #20
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Okay, I have a few minutes length video here with a size of 4,2GB... What should I do
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Old 08-12-2009, 07:19 PM   #21
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Okay, I have a few minutes length video here with a size of 4,2GB... What should I do
What quality is the video SD or HD, what application are you using, what video format is it?

In most cases you can use handbreak to compress the file size a bit but it's all down to which codec you use to export your video.
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Old 09-09-2009, 10:52 PM   #22
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Anyone still poking around this thread? Just picked up an HD PVR and am having an annoying problem getting started. I've got it all hooked up with component cables. 360 into the "IN" ports and the included cable into the "OUT" ports. I know I've got them hooked up right because when I turn on the HD PVR I can play my 360 through it. The problem is that as soon as I connect the HD PVR to my laptop via USB, the screen goes black. I unhook it, it's fine, reconnect it, black. I also don't get any picture in the capture window in the software. Any ideas why connecting the USB would suddenly crap it all out?
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Old 09-10-2009, 12:54 AM   #23
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I'm still watching this thread, i just don't post constant replies unless someone needs help, anyhow, are you using a windows laptop or mac?, im going to currently assuming it's windows.

All that i can think of is the drivers weren't installed correctly. Also plug the USB in first before turning on the PVR and see if it is just a detection problem. There the only two things i can think of right now but i need to know more about your laptop specs before i can suggest anything.

You may want to check the website for the Hauppauge just to see if they have an answer. Also what software are you using.
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Old 09-10-2009, 01:12 AM   #24
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Yes, on the laptop its windows Vista Home Premium 64-bit. I was going to try out my demo copy of Vegas but that doesn't even see the device. So I'm using the Arc-Soft stuff that came with the PVR. It kinda detects the device, as in it actually appears in the drop down box unlike in Vegas, but when I try to capture it's just a black screen and says failed when I click stop (was kinda hoping that the picture would show in the capture screen even if it wasn't on the TV).

I'll try reinstalling the drivers and hooking it up to the laptop before I turn on the 360 when I get home in the morning (I'm at work now and it's going to drive me crazy thinking about it all night :P ).

Thanks for the reply btw
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Old 09-10-2009, 11:43 AM   #25
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Hooked the PVR up first to the laptop and turned it and nothing else on and updated to the latest drivers off the Hauppauge site. After that was done, fired up the Xbox and everything was good to go

Now I'm gonna be editing movies all night at work tonight I can feel it Thanks for the suggestions.

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Old 09-10-2009, 05:00 PM   #26
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No problem, windows is a very picky pile of code that really hates most external hardware. Just remember those two steps for any hardware you have if it's doing the same as it normally sorts out the issues. I'll get around to finish off this guide soon i hope, been a little busy.
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Old 09-10-2009, 07:04 PM   #27
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Nice job Fizz. With any luck, this will inspire some more people to start knocking out more video guides for the site. Well done, but I'd expect nothing less from you these days.
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Old 09-10-2009, 10:40 PM   #28
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Another quickie Fizz, just curious about how big is the file for your Stoked video above in the thread? Just trying to get a feel for filesizes in relation to quality. I've got a 2:15 that I just clipped and it's around 126MB.

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Old 09-10-2009, 11:03 PM   #29
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My stoked video currently sits around 300mbs or so. That's after editing and compression. You could average around 100mbs a minute depending on how high the quality your output is.
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Old 09-11-2009, 06:36 AM   #30
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Interesting...the clip I have is actually 2:04 and it's 126MB. When I hook up the PVR it says the input is 1920x1280 which sounds about right since I'm running 1080i.

Now we get back to weird issues. The ArcSoft TotalMedia Extreme that comes with the PVR captures it directly into .mp4 format but the ArcSoft player is the only thing that seems to play it right. Media Player, VLC, Quicktime, Vegas Pro, doesn't matter what else I drop it into it either craps out and crashes or it only displays the top left corner of the video. I just watched the whole thing in the Vegas Pro preview window and heard all the sound but only saw the top left corner of the image lol.

I used the ArcSoft converter to change it to .wmv and then it played fine everywhere. Seems like a pain in the ass to have to convert every single bit I capture just to be able to edit it when it's saving it to .mp4 in the first place. Time to hit the ArcSoft forums I guess.

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