What Is a Multimedia Video Controller?

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  • Written By: Jean Marie Asta
  • Edited By: Jessica Seminara
  • Last Modified Date: 01 October 2019
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A multimedia video controller is a device that works with a computer to help the user create, edit, and display digital video. Quite commonly they are used in creating television programs and feature films. They can also be used to create interactive light displays for artists involved in creating cutting edge live performances.

There are a variety of forms that a multimedia video controller can take. A common camcorder, when attached to a computer through a universal serial bus (USB) cord, can usually be called a multimedia video controller. If the camcorder itself is capable of interacting with the computer in a way that is more than uploading video, such as simple editing, then this is the case. It could also be as simple as a computer keyboard that controls the editing and output of a video being created on a computer.

A more advanced from of a multimedia video controller is a physical interface similar to a computer keyboard. Instead of having letters and numbers to interact with, it will give the user explicit control over the video she is working on. Playback, pause, rewind, fast forward and similar functions will be given their own designated buttons, for ease of use.


Some advanced forms of a multimedia video controller may have a timing wheel built in. These are wheels that can be spun manually by a user to advance the video being worked on a frame at a time. Other functions may be built into these controllers such as a button to cut the footage and/or buttons that help make the editing process easier. Also many different kinds of audio and video outputs can generally be expected.

In order for a multimedia video controller to work on a computer, the computer needs to meet certain specifications. Devices that deal with multimedia on a computer tend to require more from a computer than other forms of hardware such as printers. Advanced graphics, video and sound cards may be required for the device to function properly. Also an appropriate driver may need to be installed, and possibly more than one, depending on the uses that the person installing the controller intends.

Many newer computers have some form of a multimedia video controller built into them. It is also becoming more and more common for a new computer to have outputs that can be plugged into home sound and video devices such as audio receivers, televisions and projectors. Many new computers come with state of the art sound and video cards as well, and even basic video editing software. These used to need to be purchased separately. Today, though, it is possible for anyone with a fairly recent computer to create and display a self-made film.


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