What to do if you can’t control your camera through your capture software

on Thursday, June 19, 2008

When you click Play or Rewind on the camera controls in your video-capture software, your digital camcorder should respond. If not, check the following items:
  • Check all the obvious things first: Are the cables connected properly? Is your camcorder turned on to VTR mode? Does the camera have a dead battery?
  • Did the camera automatically power down due to inactivity? If so, check the camera’s documentation to see if you can temporarily disable the power saver mode. Also, consider plugging the camera in to a charger or AC power adaptor so that you aren’t just running on battery juice.
  • Is your FireWire card installed correctly? Open the System icon in the Performance and Maintenance section of the Windows Control Panel. Click the Hardware tab, and then click the Device Manager button. If you see a yellow exclamation mark under IEEE 1394 Bus host controllers, you have a hardware problem.
  • Is your camcorder supported? Most modern digital camcorders are supported by Apple iMovie, Pinnacle Studio, Windows Movie Maker, and other programs. But if the software just doesn’t seem to recognize the camera, check the software vendor’s Web site (www.apple.com, www.pinnaclesys.com, or www.microsoft.com, respectively) for camera compatibility information. If your camera is so new that it wasn’t originally supported by your editing software, check the publisher’s Web site to see if software updates are available to accommodate newer camcorder models.