Where Do You Get Your Videos? Part 5: More Nuts and Bolts

This post is the fourth in a series in which I try to answer the question I’m asked most frequently when I preach, other than questions about the actual content, of course:

Where do you get your videos?

In Part 1, I provided some context for the discussion.

Part 2 laid the groundwork for searching for and finding video content for messages.

Part 3, was an interview with Brad Huddleston, an international expert on the use of technology in ministry.

Part 4, began the discussion of some of the technical and mechanical issues of downloading and editing video, which continues now in Part 5.

The bottom line for this post is getting the video content onto the hard drive of your computer. As described earlier, it has to get there before you can project it onto a screen and thereby use it in your teaching and preaching.

As mentioned, there are, in essence, two primary ways you can acquire video content – in other words get it onto your hard drive for editing. The first is to find a clip you like on one of the many websites through which video is available – YouTube, Godvine, etc. – that was covered in Part 4.

The second primary way is to load video onto your hard drive through a non-Internet external source such as a camera or a DVD player. That will be the focus here.

First, a confession. When I first began using my computer to work with video for teaching and preaching, I was under the assumption that I could simply slip a DVD into my computer’s disc drive and record content onto my hard drive from the DVD. However, it doesn’t work that way without taking other steps.

The first technological approach I used was to connect a DVD player to my computer as if it were a video camera. This required intermediary hardware and software. It’s not simply a matter of plugging the DVD player into your computer.

To do that, I used a converter like this one. Then I added a switcher so I could go back and forth between multiple devices. The effect of this technological approach was making the computer think that the DVD player was a camera, which it is designed to manage. I could then record movie clips from the DVD player onto my computer’s hard drive for editing. (I cover legalities and copyright later in the series to put your mind at ease.)

I did this work with the help of a tech-savvy friend and multiple YouTube tutorials, such as this.

Things have changed a bit since I first began using this system to record content – although I still use it. Now, there are applications that will allow you to record content onto your hard drive from DVD’s running in your computer’s disc drive, thus avoiding the additional hardware mentioned above. The following links will provide helpful information.



Once you have the video downloaded onto your hard drive, the next step is to edit the video and in that way prepare it for use in your presentation. Even if you are not planning to “edit” the video per se – make changes to it – it’s likely you’ll want to prepare it in a video editor to ensure that you have it in the correct format to use in your presentation or video software.

I very rarely use a video clip precisely as I found it. In other words, I almost always edit clips, even if it’s just to add fade ins and fade outs. Very often I want to make a clip shorter, edit out questionable words, remove content that doesn’t fit with my theme, etc. The more ability you have to edit video content, the more it will fit your purposes precisely and therefore powerfully.

And that’s what I’ll cover in Part 6.


  1. […] Part 4, began the discussion of some of the technical and mechanical issues of downloading and editing video, which continued in Part 5. […]

  2. […] Brian Charette has some tips for getting video from your source to computer: […]

  3. […] Part 5 was a continuation of the discussion of technical issues and steps. […]