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Audio syncing problems w/ non-controllable device

345 Views 7 Replies Latest reply: Nov 26, 2012 6:04 AM by Detlef Kretschmer RSS
Jeremy Bell2 Level 1 Level 1 (55 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Nov 25, 2012 10:58 AM

I have some old 8mm camcorder tapes that I'm trying to capture in FCP. I have a digital 8 camcorder that's able to play back my old 8mm tapes and convert the analog video to DV within the camera, and send it via FireWire, just like with standard digital 8 tapes. The difference is that there's no timecode with the old analog 8mm tapes, so I have to change my device settings to "non controllable device." So the problem is that the audio doesn't seem to be sinking properly. When I play back the captured video, the audio is so glitchy, it's completely unintelligible.


The only solution I've come up with would be to first copy the old 8mm tapes  to digital 8 tapes, and then capture the digital 8 tapes in FCP. But I would need my old analog 8mm camcorder for that, and I don't have it anymore.


I'm using FCP 5.1.4. Your suggestions are much appreciated.

iMac, Mac OS X (10.6.8), 1.83 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, 2 GB RAM
  • Michael Grenadier Level 6 Level 6 (19,805 points)

    generally, if you have any sections without any signal, the audio synch will get screwed up for any subsequent sections after the "control track" break.  So  minimally, you'll need to stop and then restart the capture to avoid any of these sections.


    If the audio is playing cleanly on the camera, but is unintelligable when you capture as you describe, you might want to just capture the audio only and then manually synch to the picture. 

  • Detlef Kretschmer Level 3 Level 3 (960 points)

    You could also try using iMovie for the capture. You get the same quality but iMovie is a lot more forgiving

  • Studio X Level 7 Level 7 (26,835 points)

    If you go the iMovie route, you'll need to convert the DV files to Quicktime DV/NTSC (or DV/PAL) before bringing into FCP to edit. Quicktime Pro or Compressor can do the conversion for you.



  • Detlef Kretschmer Level 3 Level 3 (960 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 26, 2012 5:30 AM (in response to Studio X)

    Not true. The files in the Media folder inside the iMovie project can be used as are.

    You should not use files exported from iMovie.

  • Studio X Level 7 Level 7 (26,835 points)

    iMovie uses a straight transfer of the muxed audio/video stream - the DV format.


    This muxed version is a non-native format to FCP and requires rendering as you edit.


    Converting to DV/NTSC (DV/PAL) Quicktime de-muxes the audio and video into separate streams. FCP is optimized to edit this Quicktime format without rendering.


    Using DV is like trying to edit H.264 files. You can bring these non-native formats into FCP and the program will try to work with the material. However, they will cause problems. It is better to have the material in a FCP native format.



  • Detlef Kretschmer Level 3 Level 3 (960 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 26, 2012 6:04 AM (in response to Studio X)

    Nonsens. You ctrl-click onto the iMovie project to display contents. In the Media folder you find the (DV/NTSC or DV/PAL) clips which will not need rendering. Only if you export from iMovie will you get files needing rendering.


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