Quantcast VirtualDub file size too large? - digitalFAQ Forum
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08-06-2020, 06:41 PM
zackhammerle zackhammerle is offline
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After recently purchasing a Hauppauge ATI 600 usb clone (thanks lordsmurf) I am now ready to switch over from my Elgato device and software and into VirtualDub. I know that HuffyUV is recommended for the best quality, but the file sizes just seem way too big for me, especially if I'm going to be converting dozens of tapes for people.

Which codec would be best to encode with without sacrificing too much quality? Also, I've read that videos encoded with H.264 and are mp4 format are more widely accepted by devices. Is this true? My goal would be to find the best setup to where my file sizes aren't astronomical but yet I'm still getting better quality than I did with the Elgato setup, also keeping in mind wide compatibility among playback devices as I plan to use flash drives to store them on. I'm using Windows 10.
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  #2  
08-07-2020, 11:02 PM
ehbowen ehbowen is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zackhammerle View Post
After recently purchasing a Hauppauge ATI 600 usb clone (thanks lordsmurf) I am now ready to switch over from my Elgato device and software and into VirtualDub. I know that HuffyUV is recommended for the best quality, but the file sizes just seem way too big for me, especially if I'm going to be converting dozens of tapes for people.

Which codec would be best to encode with without sacrificing too much quality? Also, I've read that videos encoded with H.264 and are mp4 format are more widely accepted by devices. Is this true? My goal would be to find the best setup to where my file sizes aren't astronomical but yet I'm still getting better quality than I did with the Elgato setup, also keeping in mind wide compatibility among playback devices as I plan to use flash drives to store them on. I'm using Windows 10.
You need to make a distinction between codecs for editing, color correction, and restoration and codecs for ultimate distribution. If you're planning on doing any post-production work at all, either now or in the future, it is best to use HuffyUV and save your files as lossless so that you can massage and edit them without losing any more detail than necessary. I know the file sizes are big, but 2TB hard drives are almost unbelievably cheap...especially to those of us who remember the 90K 5-1/4" floppy disc drive!

Once you have your files in the final form that you wish to distribute, then you should render to MPEG-2 or similar. My preferred tool for this is Corel VideoStudio; it's powerful, cheap, and easy to use albeit still a little unstable (save your work frequently!). Others here have their own recommendations and most of them have more experience with the process than I do, so take their recommendations seriously.
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08-14-2020, 11:57 AM
OmarGamyl3d OmarGamyl3d is offline
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no matter how much I tried to configure everything myself, I failed((
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08-14-2020, 03:19 PM
zackhammerle zackhammerle is offline
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I really don’t plan on doing any kind of editing after capturing other than interlacing. Just want to achieve better quality than I did with my Elgato setup without sacrificing the extra time converting to other formats
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08-14-2020, 04:32 PM
cdisimone cdisimone is offline
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[not an expert]

I echo the above and would highly recommend you pick up an external hard drive - storage these days (even for "dozens of tapes") should not deter you from capturing in a lossless codec, especially after you've gone through the trouble of changing over your capture device and workflow to try and get better results.

HuffYUV seems to be the one most highly recommended, even if you are only going to be doing minimal processing. Besides de-interlacing, you should also probably look to mask any tape noise that appears at the bottom of the frame.

Your final files, which you say will be placed on a flash drive (I assume to be played on another computer or directly on a smart TV) can be encoded in H.264 in .mp4 container. But I would retain the original captures as well on your own external hard drive as well just in case.

If you want better results than you were getting with your Elgato, I would not try to take any shortcuts. It defeats the purpose. Conversions can be queued and work overnight while you're sleeping.
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08-14-2020, 04:43 PM
zackhammerle zackhammerle is offline
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Do you have any software recommendations for encoding the video into H.264 and in .mp4 container? It wouldn’t be too difficult if I were able to let them run overnight and be queued like you mentioned
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08-14-2020, 04:51 PM
cdisimone cdisimone is offline
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It has been recommended to me to use Hybrid and QTGMC but I have yet to tackle that myself, and I believe there is a bit involved to get it going plus a learning curve.

If you want simple and ability to queue, you can look at Handbrake. I've used it along with plenty of other people, but I've been told it's not a great choice.

I'm also revamping my capture equipment and workflow. I was using Handbrake before. I'll be looking into Hybrid next. There's plenty of information about it in the forums.
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08-14-2020, 06:56 PM
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lordsmurf lordsmurf is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zackhammerle View Post
HuffyUV is recommended for the best quality, but the file sizes just seem way too big for me, especially if I'm going to be converting dozens of tapes for people.
Capture codec (lossless) vs. final/delivery codec (compressed). You can't capture compressed, as compressed requires non-realtime processing time. MPEG was an exception, using MPEG hardware/hybrid capturing (like ATI AIW cards). Trying to capture compressed will lead to dropped frames, due to resource exhaustion (out of CPU, RAM, I/O, etc), maybe even entirely crash.

- capture lossless
- filter/restore and/or restore (optional), then encode compressed/lossy

Quote:
Also, I've read that videos encoded with H.264 and are mp4 format are more widely accepted by devices. Is this true?
No. It depends entirely on the device. A DVD player, for example, probably won't understand H.264 or MP4. (Note: MP4 is a wrapper, H.264 is a codec, and you can have non-H.264 MP4 files.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by ehbowen View Post
You need to make a distinction between codecs for editing, color correction, and restoration and codecs for ultimate distribution.
Not just that.
capture codec = Huffyuv
intermediary for restore/edit = Lagarith or ProRes422, or stay Huffyuv
delivery = MPEG for discs, H.264 as MP4 or MKV for streaming

Quote:
I know the file sizes are big, but 2TB hard drives are almost unbelievably cheap...especially to those of us who remember the 90K 5-1/4" floppy disc drive!
When I started capturing more seriously (2002), and needed more space, I remember a "massive" 100mb (MEGATBYTES!) drive was about $199 + tax + gas (drove 2 hours, 100 miles, to get it) at Fry's, crazy cheap sale. My most recent new drive is a 16tb Seagate Exos, and it was $385 taxed/shipped. So from 100mb to 16,777,216mb, for not even twice the price, almost 20 years later.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OmarGamyl3d View Post
no matter how much I tried to configure everything myself, I failed((
How so? Start new thread.

Quote:
Originally Posted by zackhammerle View Post
I really don’t plan on doing any kind of editing after capturing other than interlacing.
Deinterlacing is editing or restoring or pre-final encode prep

Quote:
Originally Posted by cdisimone View Post
Besides de-interlacing, you should also probably look to mask any tape noise that appears at the bottom of the frame.
Yes, mask noises on edges of image. Don't crop, mask (cover with black, re-center image in matte). This is "cropping" the overscan noise, guides in the forum, a sticky exists for it as well.

Quote:
But I would retain the original captures as well on your own external hard drive as well just in case.
Retain tapes, retain capture archives (your choice on pre/post process, depends on some variables).

Quote:
If you want better results than you were getting with your Elgato, I would not try to take any shortcuts. It defeats the purpose. Conversions can be queued and work overnight while you're sleeping.
All correct.
- Shortcuts can ding quality, or tank quality, but it's always negative.
- Leaving a computer on 24/7 is why heat+cooling was a concern when I built it. It often works when I sleep.

Quote:
Originally Posted by zackhammerle View Post
Do you have any software recommendations for encoding the video into H.264 and in .mp4 container? It wouldn’t be too difficult if I were able to let them run overnight and be queued like you mentioned
Hybrid lets you QTGMC deinterlace (Vapoursynth), encode x264 (manually settings best, defaults passably decent), and choice of container (MKV, MP4, others). Hybrid is freeware, but selur works hard on it, a small donation to him is encouraged.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cdisimone View Post
It has been recommended to me to use Hybrid and QTGMC but I have yet to tackle that myself, and I believe there is a bit involved to get it going plus a learning curve.
Most of the learning curve is trying to understand what all the options are, when (and when not) to use them. Start at the default, learn what to change. For example, 422 profile with 422 color, 15 CQ, and consider expanding GOP/frames to 5 from 3. There are lots of tabs and options, but for basic use isn't needed. Very powerful, looks intimidating, but most can just be ignored for casual non-power users.

Quote:
If you want simple and ability to queue, you can look at Handbrake. I've used it along with plenty of other people, but I've been told it's not a great choice.
Don't. Shortcut. Problems. The worst aspect is the internal deinterlacers suck, not QTGMC. Learn Hybrid, it's not that hard. I need to make guides for it, and I'm really hoping I can do so soon, been trying to free up time for myself since last year.

Quote:
I'm also revamping my capture equipment and workflow. I was using Handbrake before. I'll be looking into Hybrid next. There's plenty of information about it in the forums.
I recently been submitting bug reports and feature requests to selur, and he's done most of them. I've had to step away for a few weeks (he's probably wondering where I went), but plan to follow up with more again soon. I cannot suggest this software enough, and I'm trying to make it address every concern we'd have for VHS/analog source conversion.

Using Avisynth, Hybrid can also do all the masking, but you need to start in AvsPmod and Avisynth, then open the .avs file in Hybrid. This is more complex, a reason for my guide, and something I'm trying to sort out with selur (hoping that one day the external .avs isn't needed, AIO in Hybrid instead).

Software developers are usually a-holes more than not, so it's nice to meet a dev that is so workable. (Note that I can also speak his language, meaning advanced video jargon, so that may be part of it. Laymen/newbies may not get the same sort of interaction.)

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