Inspired to begin recording videos of older video games, I purchased the Roxio Game Capture HD Pro in August 2014. I was previously using a Dazzle DVD Recorder but it could only capture from an A/V input. With component and HDMI inputs, the Game Capture HD Pro allows me to capture just about any game console. After about a year using it, capturing footage from the NES to the Xbox 360, I’m ready to move on. Capturing footage is easy to do but every now and then a session will result in garbled, almost unusable footage. Editing software is also bundled with the device but after using it a few times, it’s easy to realize why.
At about a hundred dollars, this device is one of the more affordable HD capture devices. It’s easy to setup and install too. It’s a physical device that has component and HDMI inputs and outputs, as well as a USB port to plug into the computer. The device you’re capturing from feeds through the Game Capture HD Pro and outputs on a TV while the computer is recording the footage. The capture software doesn’t have the ability to record commentary while you’re playing opting instead to allow that feature in the bundled VideoWave editing software. I avoided this by recording my commentary simultaneously with Audacity and then layering the separate audio track over the footage while editing.
Capturing footage is fine nine times out of ten but every now and then a recorded session will result in garbled footage that’s nearly unusable. I’ve recorded a few dozen hours of gameplay over the past year and when this happened, it made me want to snap the device in two. Losing a video can put me in a bind; I’ve just been recording let’s plays and it can be difficult for me to regress in a game in order to have a video showing my efforts. Alternatively, I can just forget it and mention the reason for the skipped progress in a successive video. I’ve had this occur enough times that I’m ready to be done with Roxio.
That’s not the only reason why though. As I mentioned the Game Capture HD Pro comes bundled with Roxio’s VideoWave editing software and it’s just as spotty. Just like setup in general, the editing software is easy to use and learn, and this is coming from someone with little experience with any other video editing software. In the editing space are additional windows for inserting video or audio from the computer’s folders quickly. But, if there’s any video or audio files in the selected folders, VideoWave crashes nine times out of ten, no joke (besides all the general crashes that occurred). After finding little help on the official forums, I found guidance from another user’s YouTube explanation (here), and it worked! Think about that. A feature that’s activated by default and part of the software causes it to crash; wonderful! I’ve been able to get by since stumbling upon that video, but I still have to deal with frequent crashing.
At this point, I’m done with it just getting me by. I want a capture device and video editing software that’s more than passable. I want something that’s reliable. Roxio’s Game Capture HD Pro has gotten me through my first year of recording video games and I’ve learned a lot, especially on the post-production side. I’ve got more to learn and I’ve not lost my inspiration because of this either. I can’t say I won’t ever try another Roxio product (I certainly wouldn’t recommend this under most circumstances) but I am looking forward to getting my feet wet with another company’s capture device.