Logging and Capturing Video

To capture video using Premiere - that is to take the video on a mini-DV tape and download it into your computer as a digital file - you first need to connect your camera to the computer before you launch Premiere.

Before beginning to capture video from your mini-DV tape, you need to make sure that Premiere can communicate with your camera.

So start Premiere. In the menu at the top of the screen select Edit...Preferences...Scratch Disks and Device Control. Click on Options under Device Control and the following dialogue box will appear.

Select the Device Brand and Device Model to match your camera. Use the other settings below. Then Click OK to close the DV Device Control Options dialogue box and OK to close the Scratch Disk and Device Control dialogue box.

Premiere should now be able to communicate with your camera.

Now in the menu at the top of the screen click on:

File...Capture...Movie Capture

The Movie Capture window will appear.

To the right are two tabs: Logging and Settings. Before you start capturing, select Settings and make sure everything is in order:

This tab allows you to change the device control and scratch disk settings which you set earlier.

Make sure Capture Location points to the folder where you want your media stored and make sure Device Control matches your camera. If these are incorrect, click on Edit in the Preferences section to adjust.

You can also change the settings related to the details of how Premiere captures your footage. Generally you don't want to mess with these settings, unless you only want to capture either the audio or the video from your tape. In this case, click on Edit in the Capture Settings section and uncheck the box next to the Video or Audio section, whichever is appropriate.

Now click on the Logging tab to start getting some video into your project.

Under Reel Name type a name to for the mini-DV tape you're about to log and capture. It's best to use the same name that is written on the actual tape so you can match the two later on if you need to.

Make sure that if you are capturing footage from more than one tape, update Reel Name when you change tapes.

Playing Your Tape

Your tape will be displayed in the Movie Capture window during the log and capture process.

To begin playing your tape, you can use the Play, Stop, Pause, Fast Forward and Rewind buttons below the Viewer window.

You also can play a clip in the Viewer by pressing the spacebar on your computer. To stop playing the clip, just press the spacebar again.

To the left of the Play/Stop buttons is a shuttle control that you can click on and drag horizontally to play the clip more quickly.

To the right of the Play/Stop buttons is a the time code indicator - the time stamp showing where the current frame of the displayed exists on the mini-DV tape from which it was captured.

Premiere has two basic ways to capture the video you're playing - immediate capture and log and capture.

Capture On The Fly

You can immediately begin capturing a video clip by starting to play the clip at the point where you want to start capturing it, and then clicking on the Record button (it has a red circle and is sitting below the play button)

That will begin capturing the clip from that point.

Don't do anything else while capture is running. Nothing! No browsing, no checking your email - in fact, you shouldn't even be running any other applications while you use Premiere.

When you've reached the end of the shot you want to capture, press the square Stop button and a save-as dialogue window will pop up. Enter a file name (and a comment if you wish) then click OK. The file is now saved in the folder you specified during setup.

Repeat this process until you have all the material you want on your hard drive. Close the Movie Capture window to return to the project. All of the clips you captured will be displayed in the Project window.

Turn off the video camera.

Log and Capture

The other way to capture video clips is to first go through your tape and log the clips you want to capture by creating in and out points.

Then when you're done selecting all the clips you want, you can do a Batch capture to capture them all at once.

Start by opening the Batch Capture Window:

File...Capture...Movie Capture...Batch Capture

Now back in the Movie Capture Window, move through your clips to the beginning of a segment you want to log and then starting to play the clip.

Then on your keyboard click on the

i key

Which will create an in point to begin logging the clip.

When the clip has reached the point where you want to stop capturing it, on your keyboard click on the:

o key

Which will create an out point to stop logging the clip.

Then click on the button for:

Log In/Out

And give a name to the clip (you also can type in some notes describing the clip if you want).

Then click OK.

The play the video again and when you reach the point where you want to log another clip, again click on the i key, and then the o key. Click on Log Clip, give this clip another name, and click on OK.

You'll notice that as you do this, your clips will show up as files in the Batch Window.

Ace loggers do it with one hand using shortcut keys: Use the J key to play backward. Use the K key to stop. Use the L key to play. Hit J or L twice or more in succession to fast reverse or fast forward. Use I and O for In and Out points. Hit Return or Enter to log the clip. With practice, you can log a whole tape in real time or less.

When you're done logging all the clips you want to capture, Save the Batch List. The command is in the File menu:

Batch Capture

Select the clips that you want to capture in the Batch Capture Window and hit the red record button. Premiere now will go through your mini-DV tape, finding the clips you've logged and capturing each of them to the computer.

Once the clips are captured, a check mark appears on the front of said clips in the Batch Capture list. Premiere adds a second or two to the front and back of each clip.

Close out the Movie Capture window.

Close out the Batch Capture window (save, if it asks you to).

Congratulations! You now have video clips stored on your hard drive which you can now begin editing together into a sequence.