Enjoy TV Video Content on your Sony PSP

[Using the iRecord | Using the Neuros Recorder 2

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This how to guide will show you how to enjoy video content from your TV like live broadcasts or TV sources like a DVD player, VCR or DVR on your Sony PSP.

This guide assumes you have some basic knowledge of how to hook up audio/video connections as we will use two popular MPEG-4 video recording devices called iRecord and Neuros Technology's Neuros Recorder 2 Plus.

Of course there are other ways to record and copy video content to your PSP from a DVD or a DVR, but those require a more advanced level of knowledge and a greater time commitment.

iRecord

First we'll look at the iRecord which allows a one touch recording interface to record movies or TV shows directly to a video iPod or PSP (due to the 16:9 aspect and gorgeous display on the PSP, we prefer to use the PSP for portable video). iRecord is a Personal Media Recorder that records both audio and video to a USB mass storage device by simply hooking up some AV cables to a DVD Player, VCR, TV, STB or any other analog video source with a simple press of a button.

Using state of the art patent-pending compression techniques, you can record 3 hours of video/audio per Gigabyte of storage using H.264/AVC for video encoding and AAC for audio encoding. Music only recording is supported by MP3 audio compression.

To record to a PSP, start out by connecting the iRecord to the device you want to record from (VCR, DVD, TV or DVR) using the included component cables. Next, plug a USB cable into the iRecord and PSP and put the PSP in USB Mode (using the PSP menus you go into Settings then USB Connection depending on your firmware). Next, que up the video content, hit the iRecord record button and play the video content from the VCR, DVD, TV or DVR. When finished recording press the record button again.


iRecord uses H.264 with CABAC and the video quality is as good as the studio produced UMD's. The recorded video content appears in the Video menu of the PSP and are stored in the MP_Root-->100ANV01 folder on the Memory Stick. The video fles are named as MAQxxxxx.MP4 (xxxxx represents the sequence number of the recording). Simply click on a file and your video will begin to play on the PSP.

Read on for how to steps using the Neuros Recorder 2 Plus...

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[Using the iRecord | Using the Neuros Recorder 2]

Neuros Recorder 2 Plus

The Neuros Recorder 2 Plus is an MPEG-4 recorder that is like a VCR that records onto digital memory cards instead of tapes so the video is playable directly on the PSP (or video iPod). Unlike the iRecord, you need to eject the Memory Stick from the PSP and insert in the Recorder 2 Plus for recording.

There are really only three steps involved to capture and transfer video onto your PSP including hooking up the R2 to your video source and TV, turning on the R2 and recording the video, and then popping the memory card into your PSP.

Record

1. Set up the R2

Plug it in, connect it to your TV, power it on and do all the great set-up things you’ve read about in your owners manual.(see here for more detail) The R2 pretty much records from any device that produces a video signal out of a yellow-red-white set of RCA plugs.

In a nutshell, if you've got a set of RCA plugs that output a video signal, the R2 will digitize it.

2. Insert a memory card

The R2 works with both Compact Flash and Memory Stick Pro/Pro Duo cards. The R2+ also supports MMC and SD. For the PSP, you should use a Memory Stick Duo, if possible, since that card is also accepted by the PSP. Video takes up quite a bit of space. A large capacity (say, 512MB or 1GB) card gives you plenty of room to store several hours of video. Gently but firmly insert your memory card into the slot in the front of your R2 unit. Note: The R2 is incompatible with high-speed flash cards.

3. Load the Main Menu



If you are not already at the main menu display, press Home on your remote. The main menu consists of 6 icons, displayed in a row at the top of your screen. It looks like this.

4. Select the Recorder



Move the menu selector to Recorder (the film clip with a red dot inside) by pressing and . When selected, a live preview appears below the menu line. It shows you whatever video is playing on the device you’ve connected to your R2.

5. Enter the full-screen live preview

Press enter . The live preview goes full screen as the main menu hides. You should be able to see and hear the video as it plays. Notice the writing at the top of the screen. It’s important. If you don’t see it, press the display button .

The top-left corner indicates the kind of card inserted (in this case, a compact flash card), the amount of free memory on the card and the number of minutes you can record at the current settings. Here, there’s just over 750 MB to spare on this CF card—plenty of room to record nearly two hours of video at these settings. The top-right corner shows you what those settings are, in this case 320x240 pixel video at “Normal” quality. These are the proper settings for recording PSP video. NEW: If you would like to record videos on the 'Fine' or 'Superfine' settings for the PSP, see the additional instructions at the end.

If your settings are okay, skip to step 11, otherwise continue on. The next few steps walk you through the settings adjustment procedure.

6. Open the Recorder Menu



While in the full-screen preview, press the menu button on the remote. The Recorder Menu options open, cutting off the live preview. (The sound and video will stop playback.)

This menu consists of two columns. The first, which you cannot select or do anything to, identifies the name of each option. The second lets you adjust its value. Notice the light blue rectangle that surrounds the selected setting.

7. Set the Resolution

Use the and buttons to move the blue selection to the Resolution row. Then, use and to choose the QVGA or WQVGA option. (Other options are QCIF and TV VGA). QVGA records at 320 by 240 pixels, and WQVGA records at 368×208, for widescreen. These are the best-suited resolutions for PSP.

8. Set the Quality

Move down to the Quality row and select the Normal quality option. Although your PSP can play back both Economy and Normal video, Normal produces better quality and more watchable results. If you would like to use higher quality settings, see the end of the article for instructions. Fine and superfine are higher quality settings, with Superfine approaching the quality of UMD movies.

9. Return to the full screen live preview

Press to exit the recorder menu and return to the live preview. You should once again be able to see and hear your video.

10. Check your settings

Press display to bring back the overlay text you saw in step 5. Confirm that the top-right corner says both 320x240 or 368x208 and Normal. That "Off" in the upper left corner? It means you are not yet recording video.

11. Queue up your video

Adjust your video source (by rewinding, etc) so it’s ready to begin from the start of the sequence you want to record.

12. Record!

Here’s where you need to be quick. Start playback and then press record . The text in the upper-right of the screen changes. A red recording indicator appears at the top-right corner of your screen just underneath the name of the new video file.

13. Let your video play through

Watch and wait as the R2 does it job and your video records to your memory card. After it plays through, press record again to finish recording.

14. Return to the main menu

After recording, press on your remote to leave the recording session and return to the main menu.

Transfer

1. Place your memory card in your computer

After you finish recording and return to the main menu, gently remove the memory card from your R2 and insert it into the PSP's memory stick slot. You can now play the video directly from the memory stick, congratulations!. If you aren't using a memory stick, or you are using Fine or Superfine settings, you can still take your memory card and put it into the card reader on your personal computer. It will mount as a new drive. You can also connect the PSP to your PC via USB.

2. Find the movie file



Open the new drive window. In Windows, access it from My Computer. In OS X, you can reach it from your desktop. Navigate down to the MP_ROOT folder and then to the 101MNV01 inside it. Inside this subfolder you’ll find your newly recorded video. Each one’s named M4V followed by a number, like you saw in step 11 (e.g. M4V00003.MP4).

3. Connect your PSP

Connect your PSP with the USB cable, turn it on and navigate to the "USB" option on the PSP. It should now appear as a new drive on your PC.

4. Drag your video file onto the Memory Stick

Now, copy the video file (M4VXXXXX.MP4) to your PSP's video folder: MP_ROOT\100MNV01\. (with Firmware 2.8 or greater, you can also place video files in the "VIDEO" folder on the memory stick, but note that .thm files in this folder will not create visible thumbnails.)

5. Wait

It may take several minutes for your video file to fully transfer.

6.OPTIONAL: Renaming & High Quality settings

If you'd like to record and watch videos with the 'Fine' or 'Superfine' settings, here are a few steps to do exactly that:

6a. Proceed with the above instructions as normal, except when you select the quality, choose 'Fine' or 'Superfine' (these settings take up more space on the memory card, but look better). Then proceed with the remaining instructions as normal.

6b. The files will not save the MP_ROOT/101MNV01 folder. Instead, you'll find them in the PDA-iPOD folder. Luckily, they will be named according to PSP naming conventions. All you need to do is move these files into the MP_ROOT/101MNV01 folder on the PSP's memory card. You can also use the VIDEO folder if you're using PSP firmware version 2.8 or greater.

6c. Once you've copied the new videos into this folder, you're ready to put the memory card into the PSP and watch your high-quality videos.

Renaming Files for PSP If you are using firmware version 2.8 or greater, the PSP will read video files in a "VIDEO" folder on the memory stick. It will also read files that have normal names! No more of this M4V012903 stuff. The downside is that videos in this folder will not have thumbnail preview enabled in the PSP's video browser. You win some, you lose some. In order to use this feature:
-Create a folder names "VIDEO" (must be all CAPS) in the root directory of the memory stick
-Move your video files into this folder.
-Use the file browser to rename the file. Since you can't use a thumbnail, use a descriptive name like "Star_Wars_Kid_2.mp4"
-Either disconnect PSP from the USB port or move the memory card to the PSP. You should now see your file in the video browser with the name you chose.
Enjoy!

The only thing left for you to do is to watch. Eject your PSP, plug in your headphones and find a comfortable place. You’ll find your new video in the PSP's Videos > Movies section. It will be listed among your other video selections. Select it, play and kick back.
Cool, huh? In this article, you’ve discovered how to use the Neuros MPEG-4 Recorder 2 to record videos for your PSP. The step-by-step instructions walked you through the process of setting up your recorder, capturing your video and putting it onto your PSP. As you’ve seen, it’s not rocket science, it’s not neurosurgery, it’s just fun. The moral of the story? You can take it with you. So why don’t you? If you’ve got a PSP, don’t you need an R2?