Adobe Premiere: How To Capture Video

The skill of knowing how to capture video is becoming less frequent due to camcorders now using memory cards and internal hard drives. But it is still a relevant skill that every editor should know. It's the process of turning video from a tape into a digital file that you can edit on your computer. Ten years from now there probably won't be any new camcorders being made that shoot on tape, but you should still know how to capture because there's the chance you might need to pull up an old video clip from a tape. So how do you capture video? 

Have the Right Hardware

Capturing video, also called digitizing, requires the quick transfer of a lot of data. Because of this a USB cable will not work so you will need a firewire cable. Now, not all computers have a port for a firewire so you should check and see what yours has before you go to the store. Also, firewire ports come in different sizes and this is another reason why you need to check it out before buying.

Preparing to Capture

Once you have the firewire, computer and camcorder you are ready to begin the capturing process. Make sure that the camcorder is running on AC power from the wall and not the battery because you don't want the power to accidentally shut off in the middle of the process.

Connect the camcorder to the computer with the firewire and turn it on. Then open Premiere Pro and create a new project based on your technical specifications. Also, make sure you know exactly where on your hard drive the saved video files will be. You want it to be in a place that has enough memory to store all the video rather than breaking it up.

Capturing Video 

Once your new project is created go to "File"-> "Capture Video." The capture window will open. You can use the controls in this window to control the playback on your camcorder. Rewind the video to a few seconds before the point you wish to capture. Hit play and then record. Once the video has been captured hit stop. Make sure too that you properly name your video clips so that they're easily organized. Once a clip is captured it is automatically added into your project's bin so that you can immediately start editing.

Keep This In Mind

The computer will capture the video exactly as it is played back. You need to capture the clips in real time and any imperfections that happen when capturing will affect the video's file. Be careful and keep a watchful eye during this process.

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