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Hardware grievances - Which is not unduly obvious, as I am about to explain
Hardware grievances

One of the things I've been wanting to do has been to use my computer to capture video off my old VHS cassettes so I can preserve them on DVD. I found what looks like a great site with lots of detailed instructions, specifically for my card (an ATI All-in-wonder). Problem is, after installing all the ATI software, which is voluminous, the TV recording application would always freeze up and fill all my remaining CPU usage.

I've spent the entire morning either on the phone with ATI or doing uninstalls and reinstalls. The ATI people were very methodical and organized. Both senior techs I spoke to sounded incredibly tired, but that didn't get in the way of service.

The end result? After eliminating all other possibilities, the ATI software won't work because my sound card conflicts with it. (An AOpen Cobra AW-850 Deluxe, a gift from thewerewolf some time ago.) The ATI software does, however, work with my motherboard's onboard sound (ADI AD1980 SoundMax). I just don't know what quality it has for recording sound, which is something I'm quite sensitive to. But now is not the time to experiment. Now is the time to go to work. Worse comes to worse, I can go out and buy myself a SoundBlaster PCI card and cross my fingers that there'll be no conflict.

Or I can use NeroVision Express to capture video, but I had my heart set on the ATI software. It's got more functionality, more settings, and hey, it would be using their hardware and software together. :)

This, of course, is nothing compared to the hardware irritation that plonq and pierrekrahn have been going through the other day. My sympathies, guys.

I've subscribed to LiveJournal. Now all I have to do is decide on what icons to use! I'm not sure if the current icon can be easily discerned; the original picture isn't of high quality and becomes less so when shrunk.

Current Mood: determined

8 comments or Leave a comment
plonq From: plonq Date: January 12th, 2005 06:49 pm (UTC) (Link)
Sounds cards are responsible for a surprising number of system problems, but they are always the last component that comes to mind when trouble-shooting.

I think we still have an old PCI AWE-64 kicking around that you can try if the onboard sound is too noisy. The only reason that Sarah stopped using it was because it doesn't do full duplex.
From: momentrabbit Date: January 12th, 2005 07:12 pm (UTC) (Link)
I've got an ATI AIW Radeon 9600 which is working conflict-free with a Creative Labs Aureal2 card - I had to replace my previous SB Live OEM due to Win2K driver issues.

Now if I could get my system to acknowledge the on-board sound and the A2 sound, and let me use them both at *once*....

Anyhow, feel your pain and appreciate the link. I've got a lot of Doctor Who to transfer to digital from VHS...
dronon From: dronon Date: January 12th, 2005 07:27 pm (UTC) (Link)
I don't know if the site's advice is good, but it's one of the few I've seen that actually tries to describe the nitty-gritty in fine detail for beginners. I'm still trying to figure out the best resolution for recording off video.

The advantage of the ATI software seems to be that you can record directly into MPEG-2 format, and thus preserve interlacing, which is good if you're going to be watching the output on a TV. Almost everyone else uses AVI and de-interlaces the video for watching on a computer screen.

Hey, I think we've got the same ATI card. :)
niall_ From: niall_ Date: January 12th, 2005 09:10 pm (UTC) (Link)
Shouldn't be a problem with a Soundblaster. That card looks so non-mainstream, it's no wonder its drivers are interfering. I have onboard sound, but that's because I don't have my "final" motherboard installed yet, and still waiting to get a good cheap SB card, nothing too fancy. Trying to record right now often gives an audible feedback from somewhere...

Excellent about the tech keeping the interlace, too! I'll have to look into it.
thewerewolf From: thewerewolf Date: January 13th, 2005 12:00 am (UTC) (Link)
Well, to put this in perspective - I sent you the AOpen audio card because you were clinging desperately to an old ISA Creative card and so couldn't upgrade to a newer system.

Back then, your focus was pure audio, not video, so the quality of the audio was the only consideration. To be honest, I'd go get a SoundBlaster Extigy


or a SoundBlaster 2 NX


simply because it moves the audio encoder away from the computer and lets you put it right at the sound source, keeping the digitising path as short as possible and helps eliminate noise.
dronon From: dronon Date: January 13th, 2005 01:59 am (UTC) (Link)

I'm glad you sent it when you did; I was somewhat suspicious of it for a while and then afterwards it came it quite useful.

I'm a little leery of external USB sound right now - I agree the sound quality is likely superior in that the internal computer noise is minimized, but ATI MMC's TV application is extremely touchy.

If I don't catch you, have a good trip south!
mr_sharkey From: mr_sharkey Date: January 13th, 2005 03:04 am (UTC) (Link)
I've had success with both external USB sound (Soundblaster Extigy) and video capture (Adaptec VideOh) - reason being is that I have a laptop and want to offload as much processing as I can.

thewerewolf From: thewerewolf Date: January 13th, 2005 07:10 am (UTC) (Link)
I dunno - I have it running on three PCs with minimal problems. I have a USB soundcard - I can give it a try and let you know.

Well, I'll be back tomorrow night around 9pm. :)
8 comments or Leave a comment