Importing Video from Sony Handycam Camcorder


Importing video from camcorder seems easy, but sometimes it can be quite trouble.

My brother shot some videos with Sony DCR-HC32 MiniDV Handycam Camcorder. He imports the video through USB cable to his notebook, but the video quality is very bad. The video is fine if viewed from camcorder itself and TV (connected via video input).

This is weird. We tried different video editing softwares but still getting the same bad quality. 🙁



Beside USB, the Sony Handycam Camcorder also supports video export via i.LINK (also known as Firewire, or IEEE1394). However, Sony does not include firewire cable in the package. It is an optional item, which you have to buy it by yourselves.

Import video by using i.LINK ( IEEE1394 / Firewire) port

Since import via USB gets bad quality video, we decided to import from i.LINK port, which is better than USB in video data transferring. We connected the Sony Handycam Camcorder with notebook by a i.LINK cable, but Microsoft Windows XP did not detect the videocam!

It was the time when Google search is useful.

I found a forum thread about camcorder can’t be detected problem. The solution is very simple — “Make sure you use the camcorder power supply, not just the camcorder battery“. Hey, it works!

Finally, my brother can import video from camcorder in its original quality. 🙂

My two cents

I still don’t understand why import video from USB port will affect the video quality. Also, why don’t Sony include a Firewire cable with the package?

By the way, camcorder is getting much affordable now. With about RM2000 plus, you can get a branded camcorder. Maybe I should skip digital camera and get camcorder instead? 🙄

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Bonus: What is FireWire?

FireWire (also known as i.Link or IEEE 1394) is a personal computer (and digital audio/video) serial bus interface standard, offering high-speed communications and isochronous real-time data services. FireWire has replaced SCSI in many applications due to lower implementation costs and a simplified and more adaptable cabling system.

Almost all modern digital camcorders have included this connection since 1995. Many computers intended for home or professional audio/video use have built-in FireWire ports including all Macintosh and Sony computers currently produced. FireWire was also an attractive feature on the Apple iPod for several years, permitting new tracks to be uploaded in a few seconds and also for the battery to be recharged concurrently with one cable.

[ Read FireWire by Wikipedia ]

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