Using the Movie Capture Window in Adobe Premiere

Adobe Premiere is one of the best nonlinear editing programs on the market.  It is efficient and easy to use for all digital video productions. One of it's key features is the Movie Capture Window. The movie capture window is the bridge between your recorded footage and the editing program. It is what enables you to turn your digital video tapes into digital video files on your hard drive. The process is called capturing video.

Having the Necessary Hardware

Before you can use the Movie Capture Window you are going to need three things.  A digital video camcorder with a firewire port, a firewire, and a computer with a firewire port that has Adobe Premiere installed in it. You need to have all three in order to capture your video from tape to hard drive.

Connecting the Camcorder to the Computer

Before you start capturing your video make sure that your camcorder is plugged into the wall and is running off of AC power. You don't want the camcorder running off of battery power because it could die during the capturing process.

Once the camcorder is plugged into the wall you're going to rewind the tape in it to the beginning.  Then you will plug the firewire cable into the camcorder and then connect the other end of the cable into the computer. The computer should be able to detect the camcorder. When it does you can start Adobe Premiere.

Start a New Project

Create a new project in Premiere and give it the same video settings that your video was shot at. Once the new project is set up and loaded you will open the Movie Capture Window by choosing 'File'-> 'Capture'.

Using the Movie Capture Window

Thanks to the firewire you can control all the controls on your camcorder through the Movie Capture Window. 

Before you beginning capturing any video you are going to name the tape you are working with. This way, should anything happen, you can easily recapture the video clip rather than start the project over from scratch.

The Movie Capture Window has two buttons that you're going to be mostly using. Those are the 'Play' and 'Record'. Play starts playing the video and Record captures the video from the tape and puts it on your hard drive. 

There is a shuffle bar under the basic video controls. This allows you to rewind or fast forward through a clip that you're playing at the speed you choose.  The further you drag the bar away from the center the faster the rewinding or fast forwarding.

Naming a Clip

When you stop recording a clip the play back will pause and you can enter a name for the clip. Pick a name that is easily identifiable for the video it represents. It will save you a lot of time to just glance at the name and know what it is rather than play it back all the time.

Capture More Than You Need

Try to capture a video clip a  few seconds before the video that you want to use begins. This will give you some breathing space with the timing when you're editing the clips together.

Once a clip is captured it will appear in the project's bin where you can add the video to the sequence.