Video Capture help


New Member
I found this site while surfing the net and I was hoping you guy's may be able to help me out. I recently had somebody break into my garage and steal my castnets and some other very expensive fishing gear. I purchased the Visec Pro video security software and a sony 1/3 CCD color camera which I mounted above the garage. I also have three webcams hooked up. I have installed this on a brand new HP with windows XP media center edition. Dual CPU 2.80Ghz with 1 GB of RAM. I have the sony camera hooked to an ATI TV WonderPro capture card. The Visec software is excellent and I highly recommend it. It runs flawlessly and it's very stable. It works so well that I want to hook up two more sony camera's and get rid of two of the webcams. My problem is, I need two more video inputs. My media center PC came with two video inputs but the only way I can see the video is through Windows Movie Maker for some reason. I installed the ATI card and it worked perfectly. I had to disable the conexant capture in device manager before the ATI would work, I was hoping to be able to use both video captures at the same time. I guess the pc cant run two video pci slots at the same time or something. I guess I need to either get a DVR card or two usb2.0 converters. I'm not very familiar with this and dont know what to get. I dont want to buy something and find out it only works with their software as I wanna keep my Visec. I have it set up to upload the video to ftp and have remote access and dont want to change anything. I've checked the DVR's and usb's on ebay and they all come with software and dont specify if they will work with different software. I wanna keep full resolution, at least 640x480. Can anybody offer any advice on what I should do? I've been leaning towards the usb's cause I only need two, and the DVR card would give me more than I need. Any help would be much appreciated.
Welcome to CocoonTech!

A lot of people tend to go with the 8port digi clone cards you can find on eBay (there are some really good threads here, i.e. this one). The reason your Media Center PVR inputs don't work is because of the hardware MPEG2 compression (assuming it is a Windows MCE box), this makes it useless for video security projects.
Thanks Electron. I have checked into these cards. I dont really have a use for 8 ports. I only need two. I also dont have the ATI Radeon video card that this card needs. I dont really want to buy a new video card and an 8 channel DVR card to get two more inputs. Is there another way?
You could just buy 2 cheap used/old tv tuners. I personally use a Pinnacle PCTV tuner to process my video input. I got it pretty cheap at CompUSA several years ago, I am sure you can find a similar card on eBay for a really good price (or maybe even in the store). I believe the old WinTV cards work as well.
Thanks again. I'll check into those. What about the usb2.0 adapters? Are they any good? I dont think I have anymore pci slots left. I could remove the media center card and get one of them I guess.
I have never tried those, so I can't tell. I do know that the USB 1.0 ones were pretty bad in quality, but I would assume that this is no longer an issue with USB 2.0 adapters.
I have two low-cost USB 2.0 video input devices, both purchased from Tiger Direct. They work great for my security cams that are served by WebCam2000 (stills). Full motion video, however, is tricky, and will take time to get set up correctly. It works as long as you don't have multiple devices that send a lot of data at the same time on the same hub.