School Video Resources

So that classes can complete video projects, the following equipment and software are provided. We can just provide basic things like camcorders (non-HD), tripods and free software. If you want to work on a more complex project and need higher quality equipment and software, you can consider borrowing equipment from the school’s Creative Media Studio; however, studio team projects and official school project are given higher priority, so the equipment may not be available at that time. A full list of equipment is shown here:   cmestudio.wordpress.com/studio-resources/

Software Provided

A set of software has been included with each camcorder set. You will likely need to use these during your project. As all the supporting information will be given in English, it is highly recommended that you select ‘English’ if you are given a choice of language. The software is freeware, so if you don’t have the CD, you can still find all of these programmes on the web.

CD Contents
CD Contents

The set includes:

1. File Transfer Utility

This software is included in the CD that comes with the Legria FS406 camcorder. It allows the computer to recognize the camcorder and also modifies the video files slightly so that they are recognized as mpeg 2 files.

Installation: Open the folder and double-click on ‘setup.exe’

2. VLC Media Player

This is a basic media player (freeware) that does a wonderful job of playing formats that Windows Media Player doesn’t handle well (like mpeg2 and mpeg4 files). It is recommended that you use this media player if you want to view your original videos before editing them.

Installation: Open the folder and double-click on the icon

3.  Format Factory

This is freeware used to convert video file formats. Although Windows Movie Maker accepts the mpeg2 format, it doesn’t accept many codecs associated with this format. Therefore, you will likely need to convert your video into WMV files in order to import them into Windows Movie Maker.

Installation: Open the folder and double-click on the icon (but as you follow the go through the process  make sure you deselect (untick) the Ask Toolbar installation.

Deselect the Toolbar Options
Deselect the Toolbar Options

4. Windows Movie Maker

Unless you have your own video editing programme, it is suggested that you use Windows Movie Maker. There should be a a version on your computer already. You may be able to find it by checking:

  • Check ‘Start  –  All Programmes’ or
  • ‘Start – All Programmes – Accessories’ or
  • ‘Start – All Programmes – Entertainment’

If it is not already installed in your computer. There are two versions here: one for Windows XP (version 2.0) and the other for Windows Vista and Windows 7 (version 2.6).

Installation: Open the appropriate folder and double-click on the icon

5.  WMV Indexer

Even after converting your video to WMV files, Windows Movie Maker may not accept them. The indexer simply adds some information to the video file so that can be imported into Windows Movie Maker.

Installation: The programme isn’t actually installed. It simply runs. Drag it to your desktop of another location on your computer.

Camcorders (8 Sets)

Each camcorder set contains:

  • A Canon Legria FS406 camcorder. This is a standard definition camcorder that records in the PAL Format. We are not using high definition (HD) camcorders because the very large file sizes associated with HD video causes problems related to: (1)  file storage (e.g., it’s not uncommon for the rough footage of a a short film to take up over 100 gigabytes of memory  (2)  time (it takes a long time to import,  convert and export video) and (3) computer processing power (you need quite a powerful computer to edit HD video smoothly). As the camera is inexpensive, there are several limitations. For example, there are no headphone of microphone ports and the camera will not respond if you move it quickly.
  • Class 10 SDHC card
  • Two batteries
  • Soft camcorder bag
  • USB cable
  • Power supply cable
  • Quick start guide (English and Chinese versions)
  • Software CD (see the above list for more information)
  • Tripod

Audio Recorders (4 sets)

There are also 4 sets of audio recorders. These include:

    • A Sanyo ICR-EH800D digital audio recorder
    • Manual
    • USB Cable
    • Headphones (it is recommended that, for hygiene purposes, you use your own headphones)
    • USB Cable

Care

The cameras (and tripods and card-readers) are low-budget and NOT durable, so:

      • Handle them gently at all times; don’t force anything closed or open;
      • Don’t drop them or leave them in places where they can be knocked over;
      • Turn off the camera before opening the battery/card cover;
      • Don’t disconnect the power source when a task is in process;
      • Put the card in correctly (label facing the back of the camera);
      • Keep the settings in English.

Teachers/students who damage the cameras due to their own carelessness, will likely be held responsible for the repair or replacement costs.

 

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