Capturing video in Apple iMovie

on Thursday, June 19, 2008

Apple’s iMovie doesn’t offer quite as many capture options as Pinnacle Studio, but the capture process is simple and effective nonetheless. In fact, you can set just two capture options. To adjust capture preferences, choose iMovie➪Preferences. The Preferences dialog box appears. The two options relating to video capture are as follows:
  • New Clips Go To: This default setting sends incoming clips to the Clips Pane. This is the best place to send new clips unless you want to quickly convert your imported video into a movie without any editing. What’s the fun in that?
  • Automatically Start New Clip at Scene Break: iMovie automatically recognizes when one scene ends and a new one begins. This useful feature often makes editing easier, so I recommend that you leave this option checked.
The iMovie interface is simple and easy to use. To capture video, follow these steps:
  1. Connect your camcorder to the FireWire port as described earlier in this chapter.
  2. Switch the camera to VTR mode.
  3. In iMovie, click the Camera button to switch iMovie to the Camera mode. The Preview pane displays the message Camera Connected (as shown in Figure 5-11).
  4. Use the camera controls to identify a portion of video that you want to capture. When you are ready, rewind the tape about ten seconds before the point at which you want to start capturing.
  5. Click the Play button in the camera controls.
  6. Click the Import button when you want to start importing.
  7. Click the Import button again when you want to stop importing.
It’s just that simple. Your captured clips automatically appear in the Clips Pane, where you can then use them in your movie projects.