Recording Video into Windows Movie Maker (Part 2 of 3)

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Summary

The information covered in this article is provided by: Microsoft Press.

This article is part 2 of a series of three articles that explain how to record video into Windows Movie Maker. Part 2 explains how to record a live source or from tape. To view the other articles in this series, please see the "Additional Resources" section later in this article.

This information is an excerpt from the Microsoft Windows Movie Maker Handbook book, Chapter 8: "Recording Video into Windows Movie Maker". Learn More About Microsoft Windows Movie Maker Handbook.

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Recording a live source

Sometimes, you may want to record live into Movie Maker. For example, there are times when you might want to compose a simple video message using your Web camera and then send the brief greeting to a friend by e-mail. This is a popular use of a Web camera. Perhaps, there is another reason you want to record live. For example, you might be at a birthday party where everyone is in one area of the house and your camcorder or DV camera is connected to your computer and recording the festivities directly into Movie Maker.

If you want to record live into Movie Maker, you will need at least one of the following capture devices:
  • A DV camera
  • A Web camera
  • An analog camcorder
  • A TV tuner card (for recording TV broadcasts)
The following scenario describes how to tape a short video message for your movie. Because of the wide variety of devices that can be used to record live into Movie Maker, two of the most popular methods are described: from a camcorder (DV or analog) and from a Web camera. Both scenarios accomplish the same task, which is to create a short greeting.

To record live from a camcorder (DV or analog)

  1. Make sure your camcorder is connected to your computer properly.
  2. Switch the camera to the Camera position (or the position the camera needs to be in if you want to record). The camera should now be in Standby mode, but not recording to tape.

    NOTE: Some cameras will shut off automatically if they are in Standby mode for a certain period of time. If this occurs, switch the camera from the Camera position, to the Off position, and then back to the Camera position. This turns the camera off and then back on, so you can continue recording live into Movie Maker. With most cameras, removing the tape from the camera prevents it from shutting off.
  3. On the File menu, click Record. This opens the Record dialog box.
  4. Click Change Device in the Record dialog box. This lets you select your camcorder (DV or analog) as shown in Figure 8.12

    Collapse this imageExpand this image
    Picture of the Change Device dialog box to select an analog or DV camera

    Figure 8.12 - The Change Device dialog box to select an analog or DV camera.

    The video device that is displayed by default is based on the last capture device you used when recording. Any new device detected by your system is selected before the previously used device. Since DV cameras are added each time you turn the DV camera on, the DV device is selected as the default video device if it is on at the time you launch the Record dialog box.

    NOTE: If you are using an analog camera or a DV camera attached to an analog capture card, you will see an additional Line value for the Video setting if your capture device has multiple line inputs and uses WDM drivers. If so, choose the appropriate Line, depending on the physical connection of your camera to your capture card.

    If you only have this one capture device attached to your computer and recognized by Movie Maker, the camera is selected by default and you can go to the next step.
  5. The selected Audio device depends on your camera and capture card configuration.
    • DV camera connected to an IEEE 1394 card. When you select the DV camcorder, the Audio capture device automatically changes to the camera as well; the DV device captures the video and audio of your movie.
    • DV or analog camera connected to an analog capture card. The default Audio device on your system is selected. Choose the appropriate Line. For this configuration, the Line should be Mic or Microphone if you have a microphone attached to your computer or Line in. The specific configuration depends on the particular capture devices, connections, and camera you are using.
  6. For this short clip, because it is only a short greeting, clear the Create clips check box. Because the Create clips option is cleared, the video is imported as one clip after it is recorded.
  7. Clear the Record time limit check box because you want to control the recording process. This lets you start and stop recording manually.
  8. For the Setting box, click Medium quality. The Medium quality setting is appropriate for this segment because you are only recording video that shows a person talking.
  9. If you want, click the Take photo button to capture and save a still image of yourself. In the Save Photo dialog box, name the image Myself.jpg and click OK. The photo is then imported into the currently selected collection automatically, and the Record dialog box remains open.

    NOTE: You might have to drag the Record dialog box to one side of your screen to see the imported photo clip.
  10. To begin recording, focus on your subject (which could be yourself talking), click Record, and begin recording a short 10- to 20-second greeting. This greeting can be something simple like, "Here is my vacation movie."

    TIP: After you click Record, the monitor in the Record dialog box appears empty. Wait for the video to reappear before beginning to record your video so that the beginning of your video is not cut off. If you have extra footage that you don't want, you can later trim the unwanted portion.

    If you need to adjust the brightness, contrast, or color balance, and you are recording from an analog camcorder, use the software that came with your capture card to adjust these settings. For a DV camera that is connected to an IEEE 1394 capture card, use the controls on the camera as you normally would to get the picture and audio quality you want.

    The short greeting you record is only recorded into Movie Maker; it is not recorded to the tape in the camera. If you want to record simultaneously to tape as well, press the Record button on your camera.
  11. After you have completed your short message, click Stop to end recording. The Save Windows Media File dialog box then appears.
  12. In the File name box, type Chapter 8 Live Camera, and then click Save. The Record dialog box closes, and the clip, named Clip 1, from the short message you recorded is imported into a new collection named Chapter 8 Live Camera. The file is given a .wmv file extension automatically.

    NOTE: The file containing your recorded video is saved in the My Videos folder on your computer. It is recommended that you save your recorded movies in this folder; however, you can choose any folder on your computer.
  13. To play the short video in Movie Maker, click Clip 1, and then click Play on the monitor. The short clip plays in the monitor.
To record live from a Web camera
  1. Make sure your Web camera is connected properly to your computer and turned on.
  2. On the File menu, click Record. This opens the Record dialog box.
  3. Click Change Device in the Record dialog box. This lets you select your Web camera as shown in Figure 8.13

    Collapse this imageExpand this image
    Picture of the Change Device dialog box to select a Web camera

    Figure 8.13 - The Change Device dialog box to select a Web camera.

    NOTE: If you only have this one capture device attached to your computer and recognized by Movie Maker, the Web camera is selected by default and you can go to the next step. If your Web camera has multiple line inputs and uses WDM drivers as discussed earlier in this chapter, you will need to choose the appropriate Line for the camera.
  4. In the Change Device dialog box, click Configure. This opens a dialog box that lets you control the settings for your Web camera. After you have made the appropriate changes, click Close or OK in the Properties dialog box, depending on the specific button name in the dialog box.

    NOTE: The dialog box to control the settings for your Web camera depends on the type of Web camera you have. Many times, you can adjust the settings for your Web camera such as the brightness, contrast, video size, or exposure levels through the dialog box. Again, the options vary from manufacturer to manufacturer.
  5. For the Audio device setting, do one of the following before you click OK in the Change Device dialog box:
    • If your Web camera has a built-in microphone, select it as the audio device. It usually appears as the camera name with Mic or Microphone in the option name.
    • If your Web camera does not have a built-in microphone, you can still record audio if you have a microphone connected to your computer through the microphone jack. In this case, choose the audio source from your computer for the Audio setting, and then choose Microphone (sometimes listed as Mic) for the Line value, if one is listed.
  6. Before recording using your Web camera microphone or an attached microphone, check the microphone recording level. To do this:
    1. Click Start, point to Settings, and then click Control Panel.
    2. In the Control Panel, double-click Sounds and Multimedia, and then click the Audio tab.
    3. In the Sound Recording area, choose the device you are using to record the audio. This is either the microphone on your Web camera or the microphone connected to your computer using the default audio device.
    4. Click Volume to open the Recording Control. Drag the slider to the middle of the slider bar. This adjusts the volume of your recording.
    5. Close the Recording Control, click OK in the Sounds and Multimedia Properties box, and then close the Control Panel.
  7. In Movie Maker, clear the Create clips check box. Because the Create clips option is cleared, the video is imported as one clip after recording.
  8. Clear the Record time limit check box because you want to start and stop the recording process manually.
  9. For Setting, click Medium quality. The Medium quality setting is appropriate for this segment because you are only recording video that shows a person talking, which does not require a higher quality setting.
  10. If you want, click the Take photo button to capture and save a still image of yourself. In the Save Photo dialog box, name the image MyselfWeb.jpg and click OK. The photo is then imported into the currently selected collection automatically, and the Record dialog box remains open.

    NOTE: You might have to drag the Record dialog box to one side of your screen to see the imported photo clip.
  11. To begin recording, focus on your subject (which could be yourself talking), click Record, and begin recording a short 10- to 20-second greeting.

    NOTE: If you need to adjust the brightness, contrast, or color balance, click Change Device, then click Configure, and then use the software provided with your Web camera to change these settings.
  12. After you have completed your short message, click Stop to end recording. The Save Windows Media File dialog box then appears.
  13. In the File name box, type Chapter 8 Web Camera, and then click Save. The Record dialog box closes, and the clip, named Clip 1 is imported into a new collection named Chapter 8 Web Camera.
  14. To play back the clip in Movie Maker, click the clip and then click Play.
Recording from tape

Chances are if you own or have access to a camcorder, you have some home movies on tape already. One of the main functions of Movie Maker is to get these movies off your tapes and onto your computer. You can record tapes from the following sources as long as they are correctly attached to your computer, properly installed, and recognized by Movie Maker:
  • From an analog camera (for example, 8mm or S-VHS tape)
  • From a VCR
  • From a DV camera
The following scenarios describe how to transfer a complete tape of a home movie to your computer with Movie Maker. For this scenario, you will need to have some type of taped footage available to use. There are separate scenarios for transfer from analog (VCR or camcorder) and DV tape because some steps are different. Depending on your tape format, either analog or DV, complete one of the following scenarios.

NOTE: If your DV camera is connected to an analog capture card, follow the steps for transferring movies from analog tape to your computer. Because the DV camera is not connected to an IEEE 1394 card, Movie Maker recognizes it as an analog connection.

To transfer movies from analog tape (in VCR or camcorder)

  1. Make sure the capture device you want to use is connected to your computer properly, and cue the tape to the point where you want to begin recording.
  2. On the View menu, click Options, and then click OK when you have done one of the following:
    • If you want your movie to be automatically named and saved once the Record time limit (if it is selected) in the Record dialog box expires, click the Auto generate file check box, and then select the location where you want your movie to be saved. The file is automatically saved when the record time limit expires.
    • If you want to name and save the movie yourself, clear the Auto generate file check box.

      NOTE: Choose the partition on your hard disk drive that has the most free disk space so you can record the full length of the tape. After the video file is recorded, you can always copy it to a different location as long as you have the disk space available.
  3. On the File menu, click Record. This opens the Record dialog box, which is described in the previous sections of this chapter.
  4. For the Record option, select Video and audio so that both parts of your video are recorded.
  5. Click Change Device to select the device to use to record the movie. In most situations, if you are capturing from an analog device such as an analog camcorder, select the video capture card that the analog camera is attached to as the video device to use.
  6. In the Change Device dialog box, choose the audio device that the camera is attached to use. You will want to select the default audio on your computer, though this again depends on your capture card.

    NOTE: Some capture cards let you record both audio and video. In this situation, you would want to select the device to which the audio cable is connected.
  7. For Line, you usually want to choose Line In as the connection. Again, because of the wide variety of capture devices and configurations, this may be different for your particular setup. The Change Device dialog box, once configured, should look similar to the one shown in Figure 8.14.

    Collapse this imageExpand this image
    Picture of recording from an analog device

    Figure 8.14 - Recording from an analog device.

    NOTE: The names of the capture devices for your own computer will be different from those shown in Figure 8.14.
  8. Click OK to return to the main Record dialog box. Select the Record time limit check box, and enter the time limit. For example, if you have a tape with one hour of footage and you want to record the whole tape, set the limit for one hour.
  9. Select the When setting the time limit, consider setting the limit for a few minutes longer than the actual tape so the end does not get cut off if the tape runs a minute or two longer. Remember, you can always trim, or hide, unwanted parts of your movie when you edit the resulting clip in Movie Maker.

    NOTE: Even if you select the Record time limit check box, you can still stop recording before the time limit expires and save the recorded portion.
  10. Select the Because the amount of footage is quite large, select Create clips so your movie is broken down into smaller clips. This will help you find a specific clip or part of your video when you are ready to create your movie in Movie Maker.
  11. Select the Depending on the contents of your movie, choose the appropriate Setting value. If you have the hard disk space available, consider using the High quality setting. Remember, after your video is recorded in Movie Maker, you can always save the movie you create at a lower quality setting to save disk space, but you cannot increase the quality once it is recorded into Movie Maker.
  12. Select the In the Record dialog box, click Record. The Record button becomes a Stop button, and the word Recording blinks indicating that you are now recording.
  13. Select the Depending on the device you are using, do one of the following:
    • If you are recording from an analog camera, switch the camera to the playback mode (usually labeled VCR or VTR).
    • If you are recording from a VCR, press the Play button on the VCR.

      NOTE: When recording from a tape, click Record in Movie Maker and then begin playing back your tape. This prevents the beginning of your tape from being cut off.
  14. Select the After the time limit has expired:
  15. Select the The movie is saved as Tape 1.WMV if you selected the Auto generate file check box.
  16. Select the You must name and save the movie yourself if you did not select the Auto generate file check box. If you choose this option, in the File name box, type Chapter 8 Analog Tape.

    NOTE: You can stop recording before the time limit expires by clicking Stop in the Record dialog box. After you stop recording, the Save Windows Media File dialog box appears, prompting you to name and save your recorded video.
  17. Select the On the camera, press the Stop button to end playback of the tape in the camera. This lets you continue recording from that point in the tape if you choose.
  18. Select the Independent of which option you chose, the resulting clips are imported into a new collection in Movie Maker. Depending on the option you chose, the resulting collection will either be named Tape 1 or Chapter 8 Analog Tape.
To transfer movies from a DV device connected to an IEEE 1394 card
  1. Make sure your DV capture device is connected to your computer properly.

    NOTE: When you first turn on your DV camera, it must be detected by the operating system. For some cameras, this process can take up to two minutes. Therefore, you have to wait for the camera to be detected before you can record with it.
  2. Switch your DV camera to the playback position, often labeled VCR or VTR on DV cameras.

    NOTE: Make sure the DV camera is turned on before you click Record so that Movie Maker can properly detect the camera.
  3. On the View menu, click Options, and then click OK when you have done one of the following:
    • If you want your movie to be automatically named and saved once the Record time limit (if it is selected) in the Record dialog box expires, click the Auto generate file check box, and then select the location where you want your movie to be saved.
    • If you want to name and save your movie yourself when the time limit expires, clear the Auto generate file check box. NOTE: Choose the partition on your hard disk drive that has the most free disk space so you can record the full length of the tape. After the video file is recorded, you can always copy it to a different location as long as you have the disk space available.
  4. In Movie Maker, on the File menu, click Record. If your DV camera is connected to an IEEE 1394 card, one of the following dialog boxes appear:
    • If your processor speed is less than 600 MHz, the dialog box shown in Figure 8.15 appears before the Record dialog box displays.

      Collapse this imageExpand this image
      Picture of the Warning dialog box that appears if the processor speed of your computer is less than 600 MHz

      Figure 8.15 - The warning dialog box that appears if the processor speed of your computer is less than 600 MHz.
    • If the warning dialog box shown in Figure 8.15 appears, click Yes to continue recording.
    • If your processor speed is 600 MHz or greater, the dialog box shown in Figure 8.16 appears before the Record dialog box is displayed.

      Collapse this imageExpand this image
      Picture of dialog box that appears if your processor speed is 600 MHz or greater

      Figure 8.16 - This dialog box displays if your processor speed is 600 MHz or greater.
    • In the dialog box shown in Figure 8.16, you have the option to:
      • Automatically start recording my video from the beginning of my tape. This option automatically rewinds the tape to the beginning and then starts recording.
      • Begin recording my video from the current position on my tape. This option automatically starts recording from the current part of your tape.
      • Use Default Recording Device. This option lets you manually control the recording process.

        For this exercise, if the dialog box shown in Figure 8.16 appears, click Use Default Recording Device, and then click OK.
  5. In the Record dialog box, click Change Device. In the Change Device dialog box, choose your DV camera for the video capture device. It should already be selected as the default device. For the audio source, the same DV device specified in the Video box is automatically selected.
  6. Click OK to return to the main Record dialog box.
  7. Select the Record time limit check box, and enter the time limit. For example, if you have a tape with one hour of footage and you want to record the whole tape, set the limit for one hour. When setting the time limit, consider setting the limit for a few minutes longer than the actual tape so the end does not get cut off if the tape runs a minute or two longer. Remember, you can always trim, or hide, unwanted parts of your movie when you edit the resulting clip in Movie Maker.
  8. If you are recording a long video segment, select the Create clips option so that your movie is broken down into smaller clips. This will help you find a specific clip when you are ready to create your movie.
  9. Depending on the contents of your movie, choose the appropriate Setting value. If you have the hard disk space available, consider using the High quality setting. Remember, after your video is recorded in Movie Maker, you can always save the movie at a lower quality setting to save disk space, but you cannot increase the quality once it is recorded into Movie Maker.
  10. To preserve system resources, select the Disable preview while capturing check box. When you are recording your video, you will not see a preview. However, if you are just playing your movie, it will still appear in the monitor of the Record dialog box.
  11. Use the controls in the Digital video camera controls area to cue the tape to the point where you want to begin recording. You can also use the controls on your DV camera.
  12. When you are ready to record, click the Record button in the Record dialog box. Your tape begins to play back and record into Movie Maker. The Record button becomes a Stop button, and the word Recording blinks indicating that you are now recording.
  13. After the time limit has expired:
    • If you selected the Auto generate file option, the movie is saved as Tape 1.WMV.
    • If you did not select the Auto generate file check box, you must name and save the movie yourself. In the Save Windows Media File dialog box, type Chapter 8 DV Tape for the File name, and click Save.
    You can stop recording before the time limit has expired by clicking Stop in the Record dialog box. After you stop recording, the Save Windows Media File dialog box appears prompting you to name and save your recorded video. Unlike recording with an analog device, playback of the tape in the DV device stops automatically when you stop recording in Movie Maker.
  14. The resulting clips are imported into a new collection in Movie Maker. Depending upon the option mentioned in the previous step, the clips appear in a new collection named Tape 1 or Chapter 8 DV Tape.

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

Part 1 Recording Video into Windows Movie Maker (Part 1 of 3) Q314575
Part 3 Recording Video into Windows Movie Maker (Part 3 of 3) Q316420

References

The information in this article is an excerpt from the Microsoft Windows Movie Maker Handbook book, published by Microsoft Press.

Collapse this imageExpand this image
Picture of the Microsoft Windows Movie Maker Handbook


Learn More About Microsoft Windows Movie Maker Handbook

For more information about this publication and other Microsoft Press titles, see http://mspress.microsoft.com.

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Article ID: 314577 - Last Review: June 19, 2014 - Revision: 2.0
Keywords: 
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This article was written about products for which Microsoft no longer offers support. Therefore, this article is offered "as is" and will no longer be updated.

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