What hardware and software do I need make a football recruiting or basketball recruiting highlight video? Part 1

How do I make a football recruiting or basketball recruiting highlight video - Part 1As the fourth step in my five steps to a scholarship article, there is little doubt the important of putting together a recruiting highlight video to send out to college coaches.  This may actually be the most important overall step in the hunt for a scholarship and it is vital that you make sure your highlight video is of great quality.

But in order to save money, most parents and athletes want to try and figure out a way to do the video themselves.  While I will not always recommend going down this path, it just depends a great deal on your computer knowledge and if you have worked with video before.  If you are up for the challenge, you should definitely follow the things that I have mentioned in the article, Making a Quality Highlight Video.  But this article is more than just that.  Part one of this article will take an in-depth look at the hardware options to be able to get the video onto the computer.  The second part, which will come later in the week, will discuss the software that is available out there to do the editing.

The first that is a must when starting this process is to be able to get the video onto your computer.  The reason that you need to be able to do this is so that the software you have will allow you to edit it.  Without it being on the computer, it could be an ugly process of starting and stopping the VHS or DVD player and trying to time the plays.  When you do that, the highlight tape is usually a mess and has a lot of fuzzy breaks in between the plays.  That is why getting the video onto the computer is a must.

There are two major options that allow you do this.  While I am going to try and stay from jumping into the complete technical side of things, I will be talking about some options that may seem complicated to some.  You could purchase firewire or find an adapter that allows you to hook up the your VHS or DVD player through a USB port on your computer.  Both will work and it really just depends on what format that the video needs editing is.  Firewire will provide you with better quality but it does depend on the location of the video.

Just as a note, no matter how great hardware and software that you have, the quality of video will be somewhat diminished by the transfer to the computer.  The better quality hardware that you have, the better the transition will be.  So make sure to try and not go the extremely cheap route when buying the equipment.

If your current games are on a DVD player or VHS player with an audio/video output, then you will want to purchase a video capture device that will hook up to your USB.  The vast majority of DVD players will have these audio/video outputs (That is how they hook up to the TV) but the number may be less for those using VHS tapes.  Hopefully for the sake of this article, everyone is on DVDs.  For those with VHS though, there are VCRs with those outputs that are needed.  However, all of them do not have it.

Here are a few devices that I found on Amazon that would work.  You can do some more research yourself about the quality and that type of thing but I have included the product, a link to it, and a price as well:

Diamond VC500 One Touch Video Capture Device – $33.49
StarTech SVID2USB2 USB 2.0 Video Capture Cable – $39.99

The two that I included above are all external connections via USB.  Amazon and many other Internet sites also offer internal cards for desktop computers that allow you to install and internal card that can then hook up to the VCR or DVD player.  Because I know there are some laptop users out there, I will avoid that route for the time being.  It may be worth checking out these items and seeing if any can fit what you need.

If you have a newer video camera that allows you to connect to a computer with firewire, then you will be taking a completely different path all together.  The first thing that you will need is firewire (That is kind of obvious).  From what I have seen myself, the quality of firewire is the same no matter what cable you buy.  I would recommend purchasing online because there is little doubt that Best Buy is not afraid to mark up their prices a great deal.  Linked below is one that will work fine:

Belkin F3N401-06-ICE IEEE 1394 4-Pin/6-Pin 400 Mbps FireWire Cable (6 Feet) – $4.88

The thing that you must realize is that if you are going the firewire route, the cord connects your video camera to the computer.  But you need a place to plug the cord into your computer.  A number of newer computers do have a firewire port included so that could actually save you some money.  I would check the user manual of computer first before assuming that you have it.

If you do not have a firewire port on your computer, you will need to buy a firewire internal adapter (Cost is around $30 but will need to be installed internally) or a new computer.  For laptops, there are cards that are more expensive but make the process much simpler.

While this is not talking a whole lot about football recruiting or basketball recruiting, this information is needed if you want to be able to put together a recruiting highlight video.  Look for part two later this week.

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