Assuming you have a working camcorder and the right adapters, LifeFlix is the quickest and easiest way to get Mini-DV tapes into your Mac. To comment on this article and other Macworld content.
I have a number of old mini-DV tapes that I would like to import into my Macbook. All I want to do is for an app to read the contents of the tape and produce a single MP4 combining all of the clips on the tape or multiple MP4 files of the separate clips on the tape. I tried using iMovie for the fist time and found it to be overkill for what I need. It imported the contents of my tape as multiple .dv files and then I have to create a project. I don't want to deal with that. I simply want to import the content of tapes and store it on a drive so that I can watch the content on Macs/Windows/Linux/multiple-platforms.daviesgeek
Connect your camcorder and use iMovie HD to import the tape, then export using Share>Quicktime. It will create one file out of the tape.
Edit: In response to Sajee's comment below.
Choose Share>Quicktime>Compress movie for: Full Quality. As implied, there won't be any loss of quality.daviesgeekdaviesgeek
I have an older Canon Mini-DV camera and the process was quite painless when I brought the video in to my Mac.
- Obtain the necessary firewire cable to connect your camera to your Mac. Honestly, this was the hardest part for me.
- Make sure the camera is plugged in to the wall (you don't want the battery dying during import) and the tape is in the camera and set to the start of the tape.
- Turn on the camera, turn on your Mac.
- Connect the camera to your Mac via the firewire cable.
The Mac will open up an import dialog when you connect the camera and ask if you want to import the video in to iMovie. Say yes and iMovie's import feature will take over. It will start the video play back on your camera and you'll see it saving the video content to disk on your Mac. IIRC the import was real time (or very near too it), which is unfortunate. But really it was that simple.Ian C.♦Ian C.
There's a new Mac app ($19 on the Mac app store) that simplifies the import and saving of MiniDV tapes. Here it is: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/lifeflix/id630212114?mt=12
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I had this problem and this is how I solved it:
- Connect camera to iMovie (firewire in my case).
- On the camera press PLAY.
- Wait until it starts playing in the iMovie window.
Importin the iMovie window.