dvgrab -- Grab DV video and audio data via IEEE1394 links
dvgrab [-i, --interactive] [--autosplit] [--timestamp] [--card num]
[--channel num] [--dv1394 device] [--format fmt] [--frames num]
[--size num] [--every num] [--duration time] [--help] [--version]
dvgrab is a program that captures DV video and audio data from digital
camcorders via an IEEE1394 link. (IEEE1394 is also known under the
various trademarks FireWire, i.Link, or Lynx.) The DV data is stored in
one or several files and can later be processed by video editing soft-
ware. dvgrab can remote control the camcorder but it does not show the
video's content on screen.
The base argument is used to construct the filename to store video data
in, like base-id.ext where id is a running number starting from 001 and
ext is the file name extension specifying the file format used, e.g.
avi. A different naming scheme is used whenever the --timestamp is
given (see below). If base is '-' then the format is forced to raw DV
and sent to stdout. dvgrab will also output raw DV to stdout while cap-
turing to a file if stdout is piped or redirected. The default base is
dvgrab- if not specified.
You can use dvgrab's powerful file writing capabilities with other pro-
grams that produce raw DV. If dvgrab detects that it is on the receiv-
ing end of a pipe and it is not in interactive mode, then it will try
to read raw DV on stdin.
Make dvgrab interactive where single keypresses on stdin con-
trol the camera VTR or start and stop capture. Otherwise,
dvgrab runs in session mode, where it immediately starts cap-
ture and stops as directed or interrupted (ctrl-c).
Try to detect whenever a new recording starts, and store it
into a separate file. If used together with the --frames
option, a new file will be started whenever the given frame
count is reached.
Autosplit is off by default.
Put information on date and time of recording into file name.
The number of frames to use for buffering device I/O delays.
Defaults to 100.
Use the dv1394 driver to capture instead of raw1394. You must
specify the device file name to use, e.g.
/dev/ieee1394/dv/host0/NTSC/in is one of dv1394's devfs
device file names.
--format dv1 | dv2 | raw | dif | qt | jpeg
Specifies the format of the output file(s). dv1 and dv2 both
are AVI files with slightly different formats. dv2 stores a
separate audio track in addition to the DV video track, which
is more compatible with other applications. dv1 only stores
a single, integrated DV track since the DV format natively
interleaves audio with video. Therefore, while dv1 produces
smaller output, some applications won't grok it and require
dv2 instead. dvgrab is capable of creating extremely large
AVI files--well over 2 or 4 GB--however, incompatibilities
with other tools starts to decrease over the 1 GB size.
raw stores the data unmodified and have the .dv extension.
These files are read by a number of GNU/Linux tools as well
as Apple Quicktime.
dif is a variation of raw DV that names files with a .dif
extension so they can be more immediately loaded into Main-
qt is Quicktime, but requires that dvgrab be compiled with
jpg is for a sequence of JPEG image files if dvgrab was com-
piled with jpeglib.
Defaults to dv2
If using --format dv2, create an OpenDML-compliant type 2 DV
AVI. This is required to support dv2 files >1GB. dv1 always
supports files >1GB.
If using --format jpeg, set the JPEG quality level from 0
(worst) to 100 (best).
(1 - 2048).
If using --format jpeg, scale the output of the height to num
(1 - 2048).
The JPEG scaling width and height must be both either less
than or greater than the normal frame size. For example, the
scaled size of 700 wide by 525 high yields a nice 4:3 aspect
image with square pixels, but it is illegal for NTSC because
700 is less than the normal width of 720 while the height is
greater than the normal height of 480.
Since DV uses non-square pixels, it is nice to be able to
scale to an image based upon a 4:3 aspect ratio using square
pixels. For NTSC, example sizes are 800x600, 640x480, and
320x240. For PAL, example square pixel sizes are 384x270 and
This option tells dvgrab to store at most num frames per file
before splitting to a new file. The corresponding time
depends on the video system used. PAL shows 25, NTSC about
30 frames per second.
This option tells dvgrab to store at most num megabytes per
file, where num = 0 mean unlimited file size for large files.
The default size limit is 1024 MB.
This option tells dvgrab to write every n'th frame only
(default all frames).
Set the maximum capture duration across all file splits for a
single capture session (multiple sessions are possible in
interactive mode). The time value is expressed in SMIL2
MediaClipping Time format. See http://w3.org/AudioVideo/ for
Briefly, the formats are:
XXX[.Y]h, XXX[.Y]min, XXX[.Y][s], XXXms,
[[HH:]MM:]SS.ms, or smpte=HH[:MM[:SS[:FF]]].
--help Show summary of options.
dvgrab --frames 25 foo-
Assuming a PAL video source, this command records one sec-
ond's worth of video data.
dvgrab --autosplit --frames 750 --timestamp foo-
Records video data from the default IEEE1394 source, cuts it
into chunks of 30 seconds (assuming PAL) and names the
resulting files according to date and time info in the
This manual page was written by Daniel Kobras firstname.lastname@example.org for the
Debian GNU/Linux system (but may be used by others). It has been
updated by Dan Dennedy. See the website http://kino.schirmacher.de/ for
more information and support.
Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document
under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.1 or
any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no
Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts and no Back-Cover Texts. A
copy of the license can be found under /usr/share/common-licenses/FDL.