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Sony and JVC Take Different Tacks in the High-End Camcorder Gamut

Editing: A Real Hassle With The JVC!

Anyone investing more than $4,000 in a camcorder is likely to want to do some editing. This led us to examine the camcorder's connectors and its compatibility with the editing function.

As regards connectors, there are no problems, both the Sony and the JVC have the complete range required including DV and analog I/O sockets (composite and S-Video) and the GR-PD1 even has a YUV output which is rare. The DV I/O is used for exporting a video to a computer and recording the edit on a MiniDV tape. The analog I/O is used to digitize old VHS or Hi8 films onto a MiniDV cassette.

On the editing side we had a few unpleasant surprises with the GR-PD1. Downloading to a computer is rather complicated. Once the FireWire cable has been connected, you have to switch to MPEG mode, using a switch hidden under the LCD screen, set the i.Link output to SW in the menu and install the appropriate drivers. You then realize that the MPEG-2 TS encoding in its 50p and 25p progressive modes is proprietary to JVC and consequently incompatible with all the standard editing software, such as Premiere, Final Cut Pro, Xpress DV, Studio 9 and Video Studio 7.

Left: specifications of the GR-PD1's MPEG-2 TS format, on the right the image obtained when trying to capture it in standard editing software.