Sometimes when we have the choice of spending a lot to pay for a device that we need or finding a creative solution instead, we can make some curious decisions. For example, I had been using a relatively expensive consumer digital camcorder to transfer my analog video material to DV format. I had my analog video source connected to the SVHS input of the DV camera and a Fire Wire cable connected the camera to my HP workstation XW4100. I didn’t want to cough up the money to buy a pricey video converter and my previous experience with inexpensive devices wasn’t that promising. But since I received my ADS Pyro A/V Link about a week ago, I’ve definitely changed my mind.
Pyro A/V Link converts component, SVHS and composite video to DV and vice versa. The quality of converted digital and analog video is excellent, and it’s hard to believe that an under-$250 device offers such a superb performance. Since Pyro A/V Link is an external box, I installed it on a HP workstation XW4100 running Windows XP Pro: The device was recognized immediately. To test the Pyro A/V Link, I used a Betacam SP player for component video input and a VCR for both SVHS and Composite inputs. The quality of the captured video by Pyro A/V Link was identical to the source quality except for the fact that some of the colors tended to look warmer than the original.
Good News: It’s a relief to report that the ADS tech support is wonderful. If you ever need to call the ADS tech support line, you’ll be happy to discover a real person’not a recording’answers all your questions quickly and comprehensively.
Wish List: It would be great if the Pyro A/V Link’s analog/DV switch could the desired transfer format automatically. Now when you are trying to capture analog video to DV, you have to hit the switch for each capture session.
The Bottom Line: No doubt about it: Pyro A/V Link can make life much easier for small video shop owners and independent video artists.
Web Address: www.adstech.com
Final Score: *****
Animation Magazine’s Seal of Excellence
Ease of Use: *****
Quality of Output DV and Analog Video: *****
Box Design: ****