Capturing Video on a Laptop

Question.. in my recent quest to get my laptop, I elected to return the one I got from Dell mainly cause it would not capture video without locking up about 30 seconds into capturing (so yes, video issues were a problem).. I am using a firewire interface for this..

My question; for those with laptops (espcially those who capture video to their machines), what are your recommendations or advice.. I'm awaiting my refund from Dell, so will be shopping once again..

I am eying the Compaq Presario R3000Z and/or the HP Pavilion zv5000z notebooks; both pretty much the same with price varying a bit between the two. Both machines have a 64MB GeForce4440 with them.. I guess the biggest question would be would that particular card work to capture video?

Dell's got a couple models, but both are in price ranges that get a bit higher than I'd like. Minus extended warrenties, I am looking to keep the price lower than $1200. The upsides to the HP/Compaq is that the cards have Firewire built right into them (which leads me to believe they work well for capturing). They also have AMD processors (which I like better), and internal WiFi (which is my other big thing I want).

So again, I ask your opinions.. will the GeForce card suit my needs, or should I look for something better? Remember, not looking to play games more than the Sims (1) and SimCity4, so not looking for extreme graphics; just something that'll capture video without locking up my system!
 
Video capture is a tricky subject. Some other important factors to consider are:

1) The speeds and interfaces of the hard drives
2) The processor, especially concerning power saving methods
3) The make/model of RAM

All of these things in addition to the video card can combine to make video capture dramatically better or worse.
 
I prefer to use a laptop with a "true" P4 processor not a crappy Celeron or the Centrino (which is better for battery life). Onboard firewire and USB interface are a must. Obviously DDR memory and at least 512MB PC2700/DDR333 or faster is preferred. I have no problem rendering and editing video on mine but I have pumped it up quite a bit from the original configuration. You also need to consider how durable it is going to be if you plan to chase with it. How sturdy the monitor is and if it is going to be able to take the vibrations of back road use.
 
When I bought mine at Best Buy, I specifically asked for a salesperson who really knew their stuff when it came to laptop video capture, and then asked them which model would be best for what I wanted. Originally I had planned to go with a Vaio until I talked to him, and he convinced me of some of the extra details that are particular to video capture. This computer has been ideal for it (it's a Fujitsu laptop) ... I would go into a store and ask around a bit ... seemed to do the trick for me anyway.
 
I currently use my Dell Inspiron 8600 to capture and edit all my miniDV footage: Pentium M 1.7ghz (Banias), 1GB RAM, 60GB 7200RPM notebook drive + 250GB 7200 RPM USB2 external drive, NVidia FX5650GO 128MB graphic card, Win XP Pro... This has performed just fine for me. It sounded like a software issue you encountered, since I dunno...
 
I went with an HP Pavilion on the one I bought earlier this year. Has a built in ATI Radeon card. Capture through firewire with NO problems. Edits and encodes just fine. 512 megs of mem (plan to upgrade this to 1 gig) HD is only 60Gigs so I do have to move stuff off to the desktop from time to time, but works great in the field. One of those "crappy" AMD Athlon's as someone said (I happen to really like Athlon processors).
 
Originally posted by David Drummond
One of those \"crappy\" AMD Athlon's as someone said (I happen to really like Athlon processors).

All of my home computers are AMD and I wouldn't have it any other way. My laptop is a Pentium 4 because I got it on a great deal (working in the computer field) I got it for a 1/3 of what it normally cost. I would eventually like to get on with an AMD because I know how good those processors are.
 
Yeah, I used to be of the Intel:Evil Inside camp. Until I tried them. You can't beat the cost vs performance aspect. What I have edited videos flawlessly. I should mention I do it with Premier Pro.
 
HP zv5000

I own the HP that you mentioned.... 2.4 Intel with 512m, 40gig drive, firewire, memory card reader, etc. etc. etc.

I use Avid for capturing and editing 720p video off a Sony XD (blueray disc-based) camera, and it performs flawlessly. I concur with the others... it takes a little horsepower, but once you get it, you will be very happy with the results. The issue then turns from worrying about will it work... to actually getting the job done.... where it should be.

Best of Luck!
 
Re: HP zv5000

Originally posted by Shawn Rutherford
I own the HP that you mentioned.... 2.4 Intel with 512m, 40gig drive, firewire, memory card reader, etc. etc. etc.

I use Avid for capturing and editing 720p video off a Sony XD (blueray disc-based) camera, and it performs flawlessly. I concur with the others... it takes a little horsepower, but once you get it, you will be very happy with the results. The issue then turns from worrying about will it work... to actually getting the job done.... where it should be.

Best of Luck!

I also have the same laptop. I bought mine off eBay for $700.00, supposedly factory refurbished, with a 1 year warranty. I also really like the widescreen as well. I looked at new Dell notebooks (not on eBay) for the same price range, and they didn't have anywhere near the same features. Given recent happenings with me, and then Amos, I am done with eBay completely, so no more good deals for me...
 
probably had too slow a HD.. you need 7200 rpm if your serious.. or you can put a firewire HD external or USB to Firewire to PC.. try that...
 
ME gots AMD and no complaints.. works like a swiss watch when kept cool..
Meaning I cant work on it without AC in my room during the heat of the summer.
 
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