Capture button is dimmed in the Capture panel

When you try to capture DV or HDV video in Adobe Premiere Elements, the Capture button in the Capture panel is dimmed, preventing you from starting capture.

The Capture panel also displays one of these errors:

  • "Capture Device Offline."
  • "Can't activate recorder. Try resetting camera."

Troubleshoot hardware

1. Verify basic setup of your video device

If you are capturing from a camcorder or VTR, verify that the device is turned on and in playback mode. (On a camcorder, playback mode is often called VCR or VTR mode). Connect a camcorder to an AC power source (wall socket).

If you are capturing from an analog-to-digital converter, verify that both it and its analog input source are turned on. Also make that they're connected correctly, and are in the correct input or output mode. See the converter's documentation for instructions.

Connect the device directly to an IEEE 1394 (FireWire) or USB 2 port on your computer. Do not connect the device to a multi-port hub or to another IEEE 1394 or USB 2 device.

HDV devices require an IEEE 1394 connection. You cannot capture HDV with a USB connection.

Important note about DV camcorders and USB 2 connections: Many DV camcorders have both IEEE 1394 and USB ports. However, some camcorders' USB port is used only to copy image files from a memory card or allow the camcorder to double as a webcam. If you are connecting your camcorder to your computer via USB 2, see the camcorder's documentation. Make sure that it can output video in DV format over USB 2 (also known as support for USB Video Class 1). If your camcorder does not support DV output over USB 2, use an IEEE 1394 connection instead. If your camcorder supports DV output over USB 2, see the camcorder's documentation. Determine whether to change a setting in the camcorder's menu to activate DV output over USB 2.

3. Configure the device to output the correct digital video format

If you are capturing from a DV-only camcorder, skip this step and go to Step 4.

Some video devices can output more than one digital video format. Determine whether your device has a button, a switch, or a menu setting that changes its output format. See the device's documentation for instructions.

Important: If you change your device's output format, then close the Capture panel. Disconnect the device from the computer, reconnect the device, and reopen the Capture panel.

Some HDV camcorders and VTRs have a setting that causes HDV source material you're downsampling to DV resolution during output. If you are capturing HDV video, disable any device setting that downsamples HDV video.

  • Some Sony HDV devices have a menu setting called i.LINK CONV. If this item is set to ON, the device downsamples HDV video during output. If your device has an i.LINK CONV setting, set it to OFF.
  • Some Canon HDV devices have a menu setting called DV OUTPUT. If this item is set to DV LOCK, the devices downsample HDV video during output. If your device has a DV OUTPUT setting, set it to HDV/DV.
  • Some other HDV devices have an AUTO option for the output format. AUTO isn't always reliable. If your device has such an option, select DV or HDV instead of AUTO.

If you are capturing from an analog-to-digital converter that can output video in more than one digital format (MPEG-2, H.264, and so on), select DV as the output format. If your converter cannot output in DV format, use the converter's bundled software to capture video and then import the captured clips into an Adobe Premiere Elements project.

If your device is compatible with both the NTSC and PAL standards, select the correct standard on the device.

Note: Not all devices can process both NTSC and PAL videotapes. For example, if you have a PAL videotape, it most likely will not play in an NTSC-only device.

Software configuration

 4. Choose the correct capture format in Adobe Premiere Elements

It's necessary that the capture format that you choose in Adobe Premiere Elements matches the format that the device is outputting to the computer. For example, if you choose the option to capture from an HDV camcorder but the device is outputting DV video, you cannot start a capture.

When you create an Adobe Premiere Elements project, a default capture format is set automatically. If you choose a DV project preset, the default capture format is set to DV. If you choose an HDV project preset, the default capture format is set to HDV. This default capture format applies if you open the Capture panel by pressing F5. However, you can override the default setting by clicking either DV Camcorder or HDV Camcorder in the Get Media view of the Tasks panel. (You can also choose File > Get Media From > DV Camcorder or File > Get Media From > HDV Camcorder.)

If you did not choose the correct DV or HDV project preset when you created a project, optionally create a project with the correct preset. Creating a project prevents the resolution-mismatch issues that often occur if you add captured HDV video to a DV project or if you add captured DV video to an HDV project.

To determine whether an existing project is DV, HDV, or another type of project:

  1. Choose Edit > Project Settings > General.
  2. Look at the Editing Mode setting.
  3. Click OK.

To verify or change the default capture format in an existing project:

  1. Choose Edit > Project Settings > Capture.
  2. Choose DV Capture or HDV Capture in the Capture Format menu.
  3. Click OK.

To create a project:

  1. Choose File > New > Project, or click New Project on the Welcome window when you start Adobe Premiere Elements. 
  2. In the New Project window, click Change Settings.
  3. In the Setup window, select the DV or HDV preset that most closely matches the format of the video you want to capture.
  4. Click OK.
  5. Type a name for the project and choose a Save In location.
  6. Click OK.

5. Choose the correct device control settings, or disable device control

Incorrect device settings prevent you from starting a capture.

To verify or change the device control settings:

  1. If the Capture panel is open, then close it.
  2. Choose Edit > Preferences > Device Control.
  3. Do one of the following tasks:

    • If your device is connected with IEEE 1394, choose DV/HDV Device Control in the Devices menu.
    • If your device is connected with USB 2, choose USB Video Class 1-Device Control in the Devices menu.
  1. Click Options.
  2. Choose PAL or NTSC in the Video Standard menu.
  3. Choose your device's brand in the Device Brand menu. If your brand is not listed, choose Generic.
  4. Choose your device's model in the Device Type menu. If your specific model is not listed, choose Standard. If capture does not start with Standard, try again with each of the Alternate options.
  5. Click OK, and then click OK again.
  6. Try to start a capture.

If you cannot start a capture after you have verified or changed the device control settings, disable device control.

Note: When device control is disabled, start playback on the device manually.

To disable device control:

  1. If the Capture panel is open, close it.
  2. Choose Edit > Preferences > Device Control.
  3. Choose None in the Devices menu.
  4. Click OK.
  5. Try to start a capture.

6. Create and log in to a new local administrator account

Damaged or incorrect permissions sometimes prevent Adobe Premiere Elements from writing required registry keys upon the first successful capture. Create a new local administrator account and then try to start a capture in the new account. To create a new local administrator account:

When you have created a new local administrator account, do the following tasks:

  1. Choose Start > Log Off.
  2. Log in to the new account.
  3. Open Adobe Premiere Elements 9.
  4. Create a project with the correct preset. (See Step 4 above.)
  5. Adjust the device control settings. (See Step 5 above.)
  6. Try to start a capture.

If you cannot start a capture in the new account, go to Advanced Troubleshooting. If you can start a capture in the new account, stop the capture after a few seconds, log off, and log in to your original account. Open Adobe Premiere Elements and try again to start a capture. If you still cannot capture in the original account, remain logged in to the original account and re-create the Adobe Premiere Elements PluginCache and preferences folders. If you still cannot capture in the original account after you have re-created the PluginCache and preferences folders, migrate to a new account.

Advanced troubleshooting

If you cannot start a capture after you have completed all of the steps above, do the following advanced troubleshooting steps in order. Try to start a capture in Adobe Premiere Elements after you complete each step.

7. Disconnect other IEEE 1394 devices, and change the IEEE 1394 connection

Disconnect all other IEEE 1394 devices from your computer, and then do one or both of the following tasks:

  • Connect the device to a different IEEE 1394 port on your computer.
  • Use a different IEEE 1394 cable.

8. Disable startup items and nonessential services, and close other applications

Startup items and services that run in the background sometimes interfere with video capture. (Startup items are programs that start automatically with Windows  and services are specialized programs that perform functions to support other programs.) Disable startup items and non-essential services, and close all other open applications, before you open Adobe Premiere Elements. To disable startup items and non-essential services, see one of these TechNotes:

9. Identify and disable third-party DirectShow video capture filters

DirectShow video capture filters from manufacturers other than Microsoft can interfere with the ability of Adobe Premiere Elements to capture from DV and HDV video devices.

To identify and disable third-party capture filters:

  1. Close all open applications.
  2. Download and install Microsoft GraphEdit.
  3. Open GraphEdit.
  4. Choose Graph > Insert Filters.
  5. In the list of filters, click the plus sign (+) to the left of Video Capture Sources.
  6. Expand each of the individual items in the Video Capture Sources section and note the filenames of the capture source filters installed on your system.
  7. In Windows Explorer, navigate to those files and rename them to change the filename extension to .old.



    Important: Do not disable the file ksproxy.ax. Premiere Elements uses the Microsoft capture filter ksproxy.ax to capture video.
  8. Close GraphEdit.
  9. Restart the computer.

10. Test video capture with a third-party video capture application

Try to capture video with one of these third-party applications, which use the same capture protocols as Premiere Elements:

If you cannot capture in DVIO or HDVSplit, go to Steps 11 and 12. If you can capture in DVIO or HDVSplit, and you have completed all of the steps above, your installation of Adobe Premiere Elements could be damaged. Use the Add Or Remove Programs Control Panel (Windows XP) or the Programs And Features Control Panel (Windows Vista) to uninstall Premiere Elements. Then reinstall Adobe Premiere Elements.

11. (Windows XP only) Refresh the IEEE 1394 device listings in the registry

Disclaimer: This procedure involves editing the Windows registry. Adobe doesn't provide support for editing the registry, which contains critical system and application information. Make sure to back up the registry before editing it. For more information about the registry, see the Windows documentation or contact Microsoft.

To refresh the IEEE 1394 device listings in the Windows XP registry:

  1. Close all open applications.
  2. Disconnect all IEEE 1394 devices.
  3. Choose Start > Run. Type regedit in the Open box, and then press Enter. The Registry Editor opens.
  4. In the Registry Editor, navigate to this key:

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Enum\1394
  5. Right-click the 1394 folder and select Permissions.
  6. On the Security tab, select Everyone in the Group Or User Names panel. Select Allow Full Control in the Permissions For Everyone panel. Click OK.
  7. Right-click the 1394 folder and select Delete. Click Yes to confirm the deletion.
  8. Restart the computer.
  9. Connect your video device to an IEEE 1394 port on the computer and turn on the device. Windows will reload the device information into the registry.

12. Try to capture on a different computer

If you have completed all of the steps above and you still cannot start a capture in Adobe Premiere Elements on your computer, try to capture on a different computer.

If you cannot start a capture on a different computer, your video device is likely malfunctioning. Contact the device's manufacturer for support.

If you can start a capture on another computer, your computer's IEEE 1394 interface is likely malfunctioning. Contact the manufacturer of your computer or the manufacturer of your IEEE 1394 card for support.

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