Greg's bite: Sony DCR-SX44 and iMovie 9 do work
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Greg's bite: Sony DCR-SX44 and iMovie 9 do work

By Greg Mills

Greg Bites some crow. Not one to easily admit I was wrong, I have to admit that parts of my rage yesterday against the Apple MPEG 2 video import into iMovie were not exactly fair.  Sometimes you fool around with things and somehow get it to work.  

For one thing, the QuickTime MPEG 2 software, according to Apple, sometimes does work and delivers sound. It depends on the codex being translated. In this case it didn't work and Apple did give me my money back.  

They were nicer about it than I was. They had to agree that a bold disclaimer that some MPEG 2 codex would not allow the sound to be decoded by the Sorenson MPEG 2 video decoder they sell as a download. That disclaimer would preclude a lot of upset Apple Store customers.  

I also had other Mac people email me with similar upsetting experiences. I also admit I didn't read all the information before I assumed the MPEG 2 decoder would work for my application. 

Another issue is that iMovie 9, which I don't like, was better able to import video and sound from the MPEG 2 camcorder than iMovie HD, which I prefer. I should have tried all versions of iMovie before I shot my mouth off. I have always disliked the stripped down iMovie 9 program, as it seems so limited compared to iMovie HD, which came out before it.  

The newer, less sophisticated program was able to stream the video from that Sony camera.  
I am not sure if anything I did to QuickTime helped, but I am sure not going to mess with success. I also don't know if Final Cut or Final Cut Express would have done it. They might do it natively.

I was advised that there are other video codex translators out there that do a good job. I think I can recreate the import of video and sound using iMovie 9, and my new USB camcorder. While the situation ended well, getting here was not fun.  

Had the Sony Camera mentioned it required iMovie 9 it would have clued me in. I viewed a page
at for using the camcorder I bought with a Mac and while it didn't mention that iMovie 9 was required, I noticed the picture shown was not of the iMovie HD interface I use.  

That's when it dawned on me to try another version of iMovie. There it was on my hard drive.  If the MacBook had suggested using iMovie 9 as the application to open the MPEG 2 video tream, that would have been helpful as well.  

Well, there you have it, Greg was wrong. Please don't tell my wife I admitted I was wrong, she thinks I'm perfect.   :)

(Greg Mills is currently a Faux Artist in Kansas City. Formerly a new product R&D man for the paint sundry market, he holds 11 US patents. He's working on a solar energy startup using a patent pending process of turning waste dual pane glass into thermal solar panels used to heat water. Married, with one daughter still at home, Greg writes for intellectual web sites and Mac related issues. See Greg's web sites at . He can be emailed at


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