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How much video can you record on a 4GB SDHC card?


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Old 19-06-2009, 03:15
stevenoon
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Hi all,

Does anyone know how much video can you record on a 4GB SDHC card using a digital camera?

Many thanks,

Steve.
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Old 19-06-2009, 09:09
chrisjr
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At the risk of stating the bleedin obvious

4GB.

But I suspect that is not what you were asking. There can be no definitive answer. It all depends on what format of video you record. If you use the format that comes out of a broadcast studio camera it will be minutes at best. If however you use the same format as a cheap mobile phone it could be days.

So without knowing what format of video compression is being used it is impossible to be specific. If you use the same format as a DVD recorder then at the highest quality you will get about an hour. At "standard" quality about 2 hours and maybe double that at lower quality levels.

A 4GB card is approximately the same capacity as a DVD disk (4.7GB) so if you have a DVD recorder you can more or less directly compare the two.
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Old 19-06-2009, 13:51
Trollheart
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Well, he DID say he was using a digital camera, so I would suspect the frame-rate is not going to be above 30 FPS, and maybe 640 x 480 top? One of those videos could run out at a few 100 meg for a 5 minute vid, if it's in AVI, so on that basis I would hazard, what 30 hours? Though that is, I agree, unlikely.
Course, if you then re-encode the video to a more compressed format, you might fit more on.
It really depends, as he says, on the format and quality of what you're recording. What does your camera record at?
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Old 19-06-2009, 17:13
stevenoon
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Many thanks for the replies. I've bought a pair of 4GB SDHC cards today but something doesn't appear right.

The camera is a Panasonic DMC-LS60 digital compact with the following settings available:-
4:3 640x480 10fps and 30fps VGA
4:3 320x240 10fps and 30fps QVGA
16:9 848x480 10fps and 30fps

My existing 1GB cards both allow 11 minutes recording time in 30fps 4:3 mode and 9 minutes in 30fps 16:9 mode.

The 4GB cards only allow 15 minutes recording time in both 4:3 and 16:9

Any ideas?

Many thanks,

Steve.
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Old 19-06-2009, 17:25
Slipstreem
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Do you mean that 15 minutes of video fills the 4GB card or that the camera stops recording after 15 minutes, or both?
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Old 19-06-2009, 17:27
Slipstreem
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Double post.
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Old 19-06-2009, 18:13
beintot
 
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the settings i would use are
4:3 640x480 10fps and 30fps VGA

that is what my flip camcorder records at

As i said i get 2 hours of footage on that setting for 4gb.

video is normally at 30fps on cameras.
I don't know where the 10 fps came from.
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Old 19-06-2009, 18:49
stevenoon
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When I set the camera to record video it tells me on the screen how long I can record for and it's reporting 15 minutes for the 4GB cards, which sounds to me to be low - even though I'm new to this. On my Panasonic DVD recorder one DVD @ 4.3GB holds on a medium setting 4 hours of recording.

There are two settings - 10fps and 30fps for each aspect ratio - 30 fps is the default.

Could it be that the camera only records for a maximum of 15 minutes regardless of the card size?

Thanks again,

Steve.
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Old 19-06-2009, 20:06
beintot
 
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i doubt it will only record for 15 minutes.
On my 5mp camera i could get close to 1 hour of video at 640x480 on to 4gb of space.that is using 2 x 2gb cards.

640x 480 is not the best setting, but should make the most of the space available.

Blank dvds, i wouldn't bother trying to record 4 hours footage on a blank dic the quality isn't good enough,2 hours for a blank dvd is a lot more sensible for quality.

At 4 hours you are moving closer to video cd quality.

I'd go through the camera options and see what everything is set at,even look for a lower megapixel setting.
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Old 20-06-2009, 09:17
Pingu
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My Lumix TZ5 shoots 30fps 848x480 16:9 video in Motion JPEG with an exceptionally high bitrate of 12mbps. That works out at about 45 minutes on a 4GB card, although I believe it does limit each clip to 15 minutes for some reason.
Some of the newest Lumix cameras are now using more advanced codecs like H.264, so comparable video quality can be achieved at less that a quarter of the MJPEG bitrate used by most cameras.
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Old 20-06-2009, 13:35
beintot
 
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My Lumix TZ5 shoots 30fps 848x480 16:9 video in Motion JPEG with an exceptionally high bitrate of 12mbps. That works out at about 45 minutes on a 4GB card, although I believe it does limit each clip to 15 minutes for some reason.
Some of the newest Lumix cameras are now using more advanced codecs like H.264, so comparable video quality can be achieved at less that a quarter of the MJPEG bitrate used by most cameras.
That looks like where the issue is
12mbps is just daft really for a pocket camera.
And you've also cleared up the 15 minutes recording at a time issue.

You are not far off high definition footage at that bit rate.

Put it this way ,if you buy a dvd movie out of a store the bitrate will vary between 5 mbps to 10 mbps while watching the film.
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Old 22-06-2009, 16:17
pete76
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MJPEG is an inefficient codec so you need to use high bitrates to keep the quality up.

Many digital cameras are limited to 15 minute recording times for tax reasons - any longer than 15 minutes is considered a camcorder, which are taxed higher. You can just start recording again once your 15 mins are up, until the card is full.
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