Occupational thoughts

Covering life on the home front.

Xbox 360 video capture

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Being back from Germany, I wrote a very (as about 20 lines long) short Halo Machinima idea entitled ‘How to be a Halofag’ while I was sitting at the back of the class in a German school. Once here I began putting it to action with the video capture dongle which arrived some time last week. In the mistaken perception that I needed another cable I went to Curry’s and bought one. Once I got home I realized that the right cable was there all along and that the one I had just bought was the wrong one anyway. Despite still having the receipt and original packaging Curry’s refused to exchange it for store credit or anything. Bastards.
Having tested the video capture dongle I can confirm that it’s most probably the best hardware for capturing games in general on the Xbox 360.
My only complaints are that the resolution is pretty low PAL 720 x 576 (and those are scan lines, not pixels) but there’s absolutely nothing that can be done about that as it’s the maximum resolution that composite video output will allow. This can be easily remedied by changing the [digital] pixel aspect ratio to make it appear widescreen and blowing up the image to fit it to a High Definition standard. This however is cheating and simply results in a big and low resolution image.
My second complaint is that there is sometimes very minor image distortion. I’m not totally sure why this occurs because different distortions occur in different programs:

videocompare2

And there’s some image lag in the preview which is mostly down to the processor maxing out. The lag doesn’t come out in the final render. It’s not a fault of the hardware so it’s not really a complaint.

After doing that at an estimated cost of 20 pounds, I went and upgraded my Bungie account to a Bungie Pro account which lets me render Halo 3 footage at 720×1280 High Defenition and then host it on Bungie’s servers for as long as I’m still a Bungie Pro member. One year of the Pro membership cost 6-ish pounds. One slight problem is the fact that each clip takes up one file and Bungie only hosts up to 24 files at any one time: I’ll have to keep the file rotation under 24 files before editing, which shouldn’t be too difficult.
Each method has it’s advantages and disadvantages, but I now have both so it doesn’t really matter.

But before I go, here’s a screenshot on Valhalla (formerly known as Coagulation or Blood Gulch) at full 1920×1080 resolution, curse the Maker to think that I seem to becoming addicted to pixel counts:

spartanjump

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Written by Pierre

July 13, 2009 at 14:43

Posted in gaming, technology

Tagged with ,

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