Thanks, but i was thinking of a portable digital camera that takes still photos and short videos. I was considering one of the Canon Digital Elf models, but i'm not sure what the exact file format is called that will enable me to directly transfer MPEGs to itues and ATV. Please help if you can. Thanks.
Thanks...i would like to figure out for sure because my Sony digital camera, which is about 4 years old, captures MPEGS that are muxed and the sound does not transfer. The specs for the Canon Elf say "AVI Motion JPEG with Audio" for Video Recording. Would appreciate any further guidance b/c i hope to transfer alot of short videos from the new camera to ATV. Thanks.
If you do not really want to buy another camera, try converting your muxed mov files with something like MPEG Streamclip.
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Motion JPEG is no use for the tv, you need mpeg4 at a datarate of less than 3,000 Kbps. Cameras that take video in .mov format may or may not work. AVI and MOV are containers that hold the various compression types inside them.
If for example the MOV file had a mpeg4 video inside it it would be fine, but if it had a motionJPEG inside it wouldn't.
To further be sure the camera is OK, you will also need to consider the audio compression format, AAC, MP3, AIFF and WAVE will all be fine but µlaw for example wouldn't.
mpegstreamclip is a good idea it's free and you may need QT mpeg2 playback component ($20-I think) if your current video is mpeg2 and not mpeg1.
The Kodak Z812 IS is a nice still camera that will take videos in high definition (1280x720) that will store in iPhoto and can be edited in iMovie with no conversion. From iMovie they can be shared to iTunes and from there to your ATV. I do most of my movies with a camcorder, but the Kodak does a very nice job.
Thanks AppleMan...i will seriously consider the Kodak model you suggest...but if for some reason i decide to go with another model, do you know exactly what specs (in terms of audio & video acronyms, etc.) a camera should have to ensure no issues transferring into the various Apple applications, including iTunes and ATV? Thanks.
This link contains the technical specs of the Apple TV. Very few still cameras with video are going to meet these specs, so what you need is a workflow that gets the video from the camera to the Mac (or to iPhoto) from iPhoto to a conversion tool, and then to iMovie, which can export the movie in h.264 which iTunes can use to sync it to the Apple TV.
If the camera records in MPEG4 or h.264, chances are good your camera can work well with the iLife applications. Even then, a camera can have a non-supported audio track that requires some conversion.
This is complicated by the fact that some camera models are supported automatically through a link from iPhoto to iMovie that performs any needed conversion with no intervention on your part (like the Kodak I mentioned).
In general, a camera with MPEG4 or h.264 video codecs and AAC audio codecs will probably work.
Thanks again AppleMan...i called Kodak to confirm the specs of the camera you suggested...they confirmed that it uses MPEG-4 and .mov formats, but they could not confirm the audio format...are you sure that this camera's movies will transfer from the camera to itunes to ATV with no problems/sound in tact/no need for conversion? if so, i will just buy it...thanks.
I don't know how to confirm that because I always edit in iMovie before moving to Apple TV.
I can confirm that iMovie will import it from iPhoto with no additional conversion as of iMovie 7.1.1 and the latest Quicktime. The iMovie import may do a transformation of the audio track, because this would not work in the earlier releases.
This is a great camera if you do not mind a camera that is almost as large as an SLR. If you need to fit your camera in a pocket, this is too big for that. But it has a great optical zoom and optical image stabilization, and make great pictures.
Thanks AppleMan...sorry for the delayed reply...i actually found some MPEGS from a friend who has an older version of the Kodak camera you suggested...and the movies transferred to ATV perfectly! so i definitely plan to buy the model you suggested this week.
As a follow up, is there any reason to keep two version of each MPEG file (the original and the one for ATV)? Does it make sense to delete the original file and just keep the ATV version since they both seem to play fine in Quicktime. Thanks again
Can you be more specific about which two versions of the file you are talking about?
You will likely input the original footage into iPhoto. iMovie will access the footage from iPhoto. iMovie will create a small file called a project file to indicate the in and out points, and where to insert transitions, titles, music, and the like. So far there is only one file. Now, when you are ready to share your completed project to iTunes (which also makes it available to the TV), A small h.264 file will be created in the iMovie Project folder, and another identical file will be added to iTunes.
Once you are convinced that you will never, ever want to re-edit your movie, you could delete the source footage from iPhoto. However, I don't recommend this unless you are extremely tight on space (like a laptop). Also, you could delete one of the 2 finished copies, but again I don't recommend it. The one in iTunes lets you play it in iTunes, and also syncs to the TV. The one in the Projects folder feeds the Media Browser so you can create a DVD, share to .Mac Web Gallery, share to iWeb, etc.
Here is an example of the sizes involved.
This is a one minute movie:
Size of movie imported from Kodak into iPhoto: 104MB
Size of movie in optimum resolution for TV (large), after processing in iMovie: 28.4MB (2 copies of this).
Once you have "published" the movie to iTunes, you could delete the file from iPhoto if you want. Or better yet, store it on a CD or DVD so you can always go back to the original if you need to.
There are ways to boil this down to only one 28.4 file, but unless you are extremely tight for real estate, not worth the trouble.