1. Add a FireWire port to your desktop PC
Most Camcorders record content to tape. When you want to connect your camcorder to your PC, you must first know the type of connection that your camcorder supports. Your camcorder can have a FireWire connection, a USB connection or both.
If your computer has a FireWire port and you want to capture video from a DV camcorder, all you need is video editing software. You do not require any additional hardware.
If your computer does not have FireWire and you want to capture from DV and/or AV then you will need to install a video capture card internally. These cards are fairly easy to install and they typically come with a full featured and powerful software bundle.
To add a FireWire port to your desktop PC, you need to purchase a PCI FireWire card, while for laptops you would need a PCMCIA FireWire card. These cards can be bought at your most computer hardware stores and are inexpensive.
Once the FireWire card is inserted into a PCI slot, Windows XP automatically detects it using DirectX detects and then installs it. For older Windows Operating Systems, you might have to use the installation disk that is usually bundled with the FireWire card.
You can check the status of the FireWire port from under Device Manager. To access the Device Manager, Right Click on My Computer and then click on Properties . Select the Hardware tab and click on Device Manager . If you cannot see the FireWire port in the list, then it is not inserted properly into the motherboard. If you see a Yellow exclamation mark, then you need to install the drivers, which are usually bundled with a Floppy or CD with the FireWire card.
2. Connect your Camcorder to your PC
FireWire cables are of two types ? 4 pin and 6 pin.
The FireWire port on the PC usually has 6 pins. Two pins are for providing power to FireWire compliant devices like printers, scanners, external memory etc. A Digital Camcorder' FireWire port (usually called DV out, i.Link) has 4 pins usually as it is powered separately. This means that in most cases you would need a FireWire Connecting cable with 4 pins (for DV out of Camcorder) on one end and 6 pins at the other end for your PC.
Plug in the IEEE 1394 connecting cable to the PC and the Camcorder. It is a recommended practice to turn on the camcorder only after making the connections. Power on the Camcorder, it should be detected by Windows XP automatically.
Some useful terms are listed as the following:
USB 2.0 Port
If your Camcorder has a USB 2.0 port for transferring videos to a PC then you can use the USB 2.0 connection on your PC. Please be noted that some Camcorders only have USB 1.1 ports. The video that the Camcorder records on tape cannot be transferred using a USB 1.1 port.
A Fire Wire Port (also known as IEEE 1394) is a slot which allows users to connect Digital Video Camcorders and other peripheral devices to their PCs, and transfer videos or other data at high speeds. The transfer rate of FireWire ports, in most cases, is better than USB 2.0.
Microsoft © DirectX ©
DirectX is a Windows technology that enables higher performance in graphics and sound when watching video on your PC. You should have the latest version of DirectX installed on your Windows PC for the FireWire Port to function properly with your Digital Camcorder.
To learn more about the latest version of Direct X and to download it, you may visit the following link: http://www.microsoft.com/windows/directx/default.aspx
Download a free trial version and burn your home video to DVD now!