How Do I Transfer My Videos From My Canon Camcorder to My Computer?

Written by larry amon
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How Do I Transfer My Videos From My Canon Camcorder to My Computer?
Camcorder (cameraman(focus point on the camcorder) image by Alexey Klementiev from

Video takes up a lot of space either on a videotape or on your computer. Because the files for video are so large, there needs to be a way to move the files to your computer where you can save them, edit them or burn them onto a DVD. Because of this, most camcorder manufacturers including Canon have long since included the ability to transfer the video through a fast interface known as FireWire, which is a built-in connection on the camcorder.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • FireWire card
  • FireWire cable
  • Video editing software

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  1. 1

    Install a FireWire card in your computer if you do not have one. You can buy a FireWire card from most computer retailers. Open the side of the computer case by removing the door that is screwed into the back of the case. Find an available card slot and push the FireWire card straight down into the slot. You may have to first remove a blank metal plate covering up access to the card slot from the outside of the computer. The plate should be unscrewed and moved out. Screw the FireWire card to the case where the empty plate was screwed in. Restart the computer and install any drivers on the CD that may have come with it.

  2. 2

    Put the tape in the Canon camcorder that has the video you want to copy. Move the tape to the appropriate place using the camcorders controls. You can do this later in the software if you wish.

  3. 3

    Connect a FireWire cable from the port on the Canon camcorder to the FireWire card on your computer. Turn on the camera.

  4. 4

    Open software to copy the video. You can buy software or use Microsoft's Moviemaker that comes with Windows. Open the software and go to the "File," or first menu. Choose "Capture" and a screen will come up with the video. You can use the appropriate choices to control the camera to move the tape to the right spot. Click the "Start" choice and the video will be copied from the camcorder to the computer.

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