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I have an old Sony HC-9. I used to use the iLink cable to output the video to my Sony Laptop (Vegas Pro). I no longer have a Sony laptop or Vegas Pro, but now have a Dell Precision 5530, which does not have an iLink port at all, or any Firewire port that I can see (not even on the docking station).

How can I transfer my old tapes on my HC9 to the Dell? Do I need an adapter, maybe iLink to USB? The Sony HC-9 camera has an HDMI output, can I transfer my videos via HDMI? Or is the iLink firewire necessary for video transfer? If an adapter is needed, what is a good adapter to use? Help!

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iLink will give you a lossless digital transfer of the source material, if maintaining perfect quality is important, I would go with that connection. DON'T attempt an iLink/1394 to USB adaptor, if you do some research, those adaptors just don't work. You'd need to buy an interface card for your laptop to go this way, depending on whether your laptop has an ExpressCard or PCMCIA slot, there are interface cards available.

Otherwise search "HDMI to USB" on google, there are plenty of devices to connect that way as well. Downloading the video this way will re-encode it on the laptop side, so it might degrade the quality a little (although in most cases not noticeably), and might be a little more CPU intensive on the laptop, so just be aware of that.

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I would try to find a desktop computer with PCI-E slots and then use a PCI-E Firewire controller. With used parts this setup shouldn't be that expensive.

Actually, wait, your laptop has a Thunderbolt port!!! You'll need both of these: https://www.amazon.com/Apple-Thunderbolt-USB-C-Adapter/dp/B01MQ26QIY/ref=sr_1_3?keywords=thunderbolt+3+to+firewire+800+adapter&qid=1565708406&s=gateway&sr=8-3 and https://www.amazon.com/Apple-Thunderbolt-to-FireWire-Adapter/dp/B00SQ2CJUS/ref=sr_1_4?keywords=thunderbolt+3+to+firewire+800+adapter&qid=1565708406&s=gateway&sr=8-4

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