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-   -   What parts to build PC to capture VHS/Hi8 tapes? (http://www.digitalfaq.com/forum/video-capture/11510-parts-build-pc.html)

bluegrassdj 02-13-2021 07:25 PM

What parts to build PC to capture VHS/Hi8 tapes?
 
Hello there.

Looking for advice on the parts to buy for building a PC just to capture VHS/Hi8 tapes to lossless AVI

Current Setup:
Panasonic DMR-ES46V
Canopus ADVC 100
Macbook Pro

I spent quite a bit of time reading the forums and decided to try the Canopus ADVC route since I have a macbook. I wasn't very happy with the results.

The DMR-ES46V has an HDMI out so I was able to see what both the captured video and the video direct from the VCR looked like on the same monitor. The difference between the two is quite clear. I'd read a lot references to this on the forum but seeing it in action makes a big difference.

I'm looking at a budget of about $500.

I have no experience building a PC from scratch but I do have experience with computers.

-- merged --

I've decided to just buy the pieces and make things easier. I've ordered an an ATI TV Wonder HD 600 USB and a relatively cheap PC. HP, 10th Generation i3, 8 GB RAM, Integrated Graphics Card, 1TB HDD + 256GB SSD.

deckhanddavy 09-09-2021 09:06 PM

How do you like the captured VHS footage from the HDMI output? I'm picking up a used DMR-ES46V tomorrow. I'm excited to see the results as I'll be recording in near RAW from my Blackmagic field recorder.

bluegrassdj 09-09-2021 09:42 PM

I didn't capture the VHS from the HDMI output. Here's my setup

Panasonic DMR-ES46V S-Video Out -> ATI TV Wonder HD 600 USB S-Video In -> VirtualDub on Windows XP PC -> HuffYUV AVI

The quality from that is fantastic. Really looks like a 1:1 copy. HuffYUV is lossless compression so you get much smaller files than RAW. I tried using Windows 10 but ran into some issues that went away when I switched to XP. The HDMI output from the DMR-ES46V looks great on a monitor but I'm not sure what you'll get if you try to capture that way.

deckhanddavy 09-09-2021 11:07 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Cool - thanks for the reply. Yeah, I'm gonna test run HDMI capture using ProRes HQ. I figure that the quality has to be pretty good since it's directly from the source to a modern-day digital field recorder (albeit lots of internal video processing from the VCR).

The attached jpg is my current workflow.

Here's a sample of my footage with this method (ignore the intro stuff):
Sample 1: https://youtu.be/pkG7Up11syQ
Sample 2: https://youtu.be/5IOAzRlbJ-s

When I setup the new ES46V tomorrow, I'll see if I can upload some HDMI capture samples from VHS!

bluegrassdj 09-09-2021 11:42 PM

Looks like your workflow is designed to get the footage directly into Premiere so you can edit it. So that setup works for that case. The ES46V should fit right in. HDMI instead of S-Video is the main unknown here. I'm a bit surprised you were using a Betamax lol. But if it works it works.

The quality of the VHS footage in your Youtube videos is pretty good. The first video has some unexpected diagonal lines and that weird "turn this video into a painting" smoothing effect I'm not a fan of. I'm assuming that comes from the 4K Upscaler. The footage in the 2nd video looks really good. Although some of those jagged diagonal lines from the deinterlacer show up here and there. But that's only on close examination.

lordsmurf 09-10-2021 12:06 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bluegrassdj (Post 75195)
Looking for advice on the parts to buy for building a PC just to capture VHS/Hi8 tapes to lossless AVI
I spent quite a bit of time reading the forums and decided to try the Canopus ADVC route since I have a macbook. I wasn't very happy with the results.
The DMR-ES46V has an HDMI out so I was able to see what both the captured video and the video direct from the VCR looked like on the same monitor. The difference between the two is quite clear. I'd read a lot references to this on the forum but seeing it in action makes a big difference.

DV isn't great. PAL is acceptable (4:2:0), NTSC really is not (4:1:1). So not surprised here. But Mac was always a DV-centric workflow, you had few alternative choices. Some things work well with 10.14 and earlier, and then 10.6 and earlier. Sort of like how the best Windows OS is WinXP or Win7.

Quote:

I've decided to just buy the pieces and make things easier. I've ordered an an ATI TV Wonder HD 600 USB and a relatively cheap PC. HP, 10th Generation i3, 8 GB RAM, Integrated Graphics Card, 1TB HDD + 256GB SSD.
That should be fine. ATI 600 USB doesn't have many hardware conflicts, it's the OS that matters.

Quote:

Originally Posted by bluegrassdj (Post 79732)
I didn't capture the VHS from the HDMI output. Here's my setup
Panasonic DMR-ES46V S-Video Out -> ATI TV Wonder HD 600 USB S-Video In -> VirtualDub on Windows XP PC -> HuffYUV AVI

Either you lack a TBC (bad), or the ES46V has a line TBC like the ES10/15 (though likely weaker). Dangerous. What was your frame drops like?

Quote:

Originally Posted by deckhanddavy (Post 79733)
Cool - thanks for the reply. Yeah, I'm gonna test run HDMI capture using ProRes HQ. I figure that the quality has to be pretty good

That's a big mistake. HDMI methods mess with interlace, colorspace, resolution, etc. You're going to butcher the video.

Quote:

since it's directly from the source to a modern-day digital field recorder (albeit lots of internal video processing from the VCR).
This is false. There's no "directly from the source", that statement doesn't make any sense. "Modern" capture cards (any HDMI output/input) is for HD, and differ vastly from SD (especially tape-based interlaced consumer videotapes, like VHS). Trying to force HDMI to capture SD is jamming a round peg into a square hole. And it's the capture card that overly processes the video, not just the VCR.

Quote:

Here's a sample of my footage with this method (ignore the intro stuff):
You're butchering the video. There is no reason that the interlace should be that bad, no reason the video should have that many artifacts. Look at the zigzag lines in the window @ 4:19 on this clip. With proper capture, and a proper QTGMC deinterlace, that footage would be perfect.

As it stands now, honestly, your footage is not enjoyable to watch. I'd just stop watching, and find something else on Youtube. I'm not going to insult my eyes and ears with bad quality. I'm not trying to be harsh here, just honest with you. And I hope you take it all in good stride, and learn to do better conversions. Read the forum, ask more questions, and we'll get you onto the path of quality video. Don't get defensive, pout..

Quote:

Originally Posted by bluegrassdj (Post 79734)
Looks like your workflow is designed to get the footage directly into Premiere

This is a bad thing. NLEs are notorious for low quality filtering of videotape content, and often induce dropped frames. With many HD cards, like Blackmagic, dropped frames are not even reported, so you're flying blind to it messing up your captures.

Edit with an NLE (non-linear editor). Don't capture with it. Import the captures in the NLE.

Quote:

The quality of the VHS footage in your Youtube videos is pretty good.
Not really.
- There's lots of various noises, some of which are likely being caused by the setup, not something inherent on the source tape.
- Interlace errors.
- And I saw some places (that Japanese video especially) that were just unwatchably choppy with dropped frames.

deckhanddavy 09-10-2021 01:52 AM

Quote:

This is false. There's no "directly from the source", that statement doesn't make any sense. "Modern" capture cards (any HDMI output/input) is for HD, and differ vastly from SD (especially tape-based interlaced consumer videotapes, like VHS). Trying to force HDMI to capture SD is jamming a round peg into a square hole. And it's the capture card that overly processes the video, not just the VCR.
I think you misunderstood. I'm referring to the internal video conversion of the Panasonic DMR-ES46V (HDMI upscaling). The HDMI output from the DMR-ES46V can either be 720p or 1080p interlaced. Source being the Panasonic unit. I'll simply be capturing the HD output from the DMR-ES46V to the field recorder, nothing else. I purchased this unit out of curiosity mostly, to see how well the DMR-ES46V performs in it's HD upscaling. Again, this is just for my own curiosity and personal comparisons.

Also, I'm not offended, although your comments are usually beyond curt at times, ha! Saying "I'm not going to insult my eyes and ears with bad quality" towards my work, then telling me to not get defensive is more humorous than insulting. I'm a grown man, I can take it. Just be sure not to be offended by me addressing what you said...

Anyhow, I've actually come to you for help on several occasions over the last ten or so years on this forum, and you've been very helpful. I used a different username which I'm unfortunately not able to find the username I had used. Old age is getting to me.

Quote:

Originally Posted by bluegrassdj (Post 79734)
Looks like your workflow is designed to get the footage directly into Premiere so you can edit it. So that setup works for that case. The ES46V should fit right in. HDMI instead of S-Video is the main unknown here. I'm a bit surprised you were using a Betamax lol. But if it works it works.

The quality of the VHS footage in your Youtube videos is pretty good. The first video has some unexpected diagonal lines and that weird "turn this video into a painting" smoothing effect I'm not a fan of. I'm assuming that comes from the 4K Upscaler. The footage in the 2nd video looks really good. Although some of those jagged diagonal lines from the deinterlacer show up here and there. But that's only on close examination.

Yup, the first vid was actually from a Panasonic AG 1980 for my VHS workflow. The second link with the JP footage was from a Beta unit. I've always been able to squeeze out better quality from Beta.

I'm really curious about the ES46V internal HDMI upscaling though. Should be fun seeing how this late 2000's unit performs when capturing from a prosumer field recorder. What I love about my current workflow is that there's no computer or operating system involved in the capture process. Makes things really simple.

I believe the diagonal lines are from the tape recording, as this artifact is not apparent in most of my VHS conversions, although I've seen it before on rare occasion. Here's a sample from the exact same capture workflow. I don't use any filters or the like in Premiere, so any weirdness in image quality is most likely directly from the tape recording.

1999 VHS tape capture - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aCMF_T1t4pc&t=3s

In that sample, the diagonal lines are not there, yet nothing changed in the VHS workflow.

lordsmurf 09-10-2021 02:17 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by deckhanddavy (Post 79740)
I think you misunderstood. I'm referring to the internal video conversion of the Panasonic DMR-ES46V (HDMI upscaling)..

Nope, not confused. It's heavily processed inside the unit, and is farther away from "the source" than basic VCRs.

Quote:

I purchased this unit out of curiosity mostly, to see how well the DMR-ES46V performs in it's HD upscaling. Again, this is just for my own curiosity and personal comparisons.
Always good to experiment. :congrats:

Quote:

Also, I'm not offended, although your comments are usually beyond curt at times, ha! Saying "I'm not going to insult my eyes and ears with bad quality" towards my work, then telling me to not get defensive is more humorous than insulting. I'm a grown man, I can take it. Just be sure not to be offended by me addressing what you said...
Good to know. :congrats:

My brevity is often due to time, and my difficulties typing.

But lots of Youtubers are (1) easily "triggered" these days, and (2) require adoration. If you deviate from compliments, they get their panties in a wad. They don't take criticism well at all, and get defensive, dismissive, passive aggressive. So I often just cut to the chase: you're doing bad, let's help you fix it, and let's skip the usual defensive/excuse preface.

Quote:

Anyhow, I've actually come to you for help on several occasions over the last ten or so years on this forum, and you've been very helpful.
Awesome. I'm still here. Ask away, I try to help. :salute:

Quote:

I used a different username which I'm unfortunately not able to find the username I had used. Old age is getting to me.
If you know what email it may be under, we can always look it up. :wink2:

latreche34 09-10-2021 02:35 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by deckhanddavy (Post 79733)
Cool - thanks for the reply. Yeah, I'm gonna test run HDMI capture using ProRes HQ. I figure that the quality has to be pretty good since it's directly from the source to a modern-day digital field recorder (albeit lots of internal video processing from the VCR).

The attached jpg is my current workflow.

When I setup the new ES46V tomorrow, I'll see if I can upload some HDMI capture samples from VHS!

That workflow butchers the video especially if youtube is the final transmission, Never encode for youtube just feed it the lossless file after resizing it to 1440x1080 and preferably de-interlaced with QTGMC, Yes it may take the whole night to upload but your video doesn't get double encoded. Never use NLE software, they tend to transcode the video just to be compliant and they encode again when you make the import to the final codec, yikes. And most importantly never convert SDI to HDMI, big mistake, just feed it to computer using a SDI-USB interface.

deckhanddavy 09-10-2021 02:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by latreche34 (Post 79744)
That workflow butchers the video especially if youtube is the final transmission, Never encode for youtube just feed it the lossless file after resizing it to 1440x1080 and preferably de-interlaced with QTGMC, Yes it may take the whole night to upload but your video doesn't get double encoded. Never use NLE software, they tend to transcode the video just to be compliant and they encode again when you make the import to the final codec, yikes. And most importantly never convert SDI to HDMI, big mistake, just feed it to computer using a SDI-USB interface.

Hmm, I didn't know Premiere can upload directly to YouTube without rendering first. I'll look into it. I don't convert SDI to HDMI actually. It's captured in SD. Thx!

lollo2 09-10-2021 03:26 AM

Quote:

... file after resizing it to 1440x1080 and preferably de-interlaced with QTGMC
I confirm, it's best procedure.

For "interlaced" videos where fields are coming from the same istant in time (and then do not require to be deinterlaced) I do not process the fields and upload the 1440x1080 HuffYUV avi file directly.

Youtube leaves them at 25 frames per second, and do not mess with the fields. Unfortunately the compression it applies (also on deinterlaced sources) is quite heavy, visible on the backgrounds.
A sample here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w5RLo6Ktqdg (however, also the original video master was not that good)

latreche34 09-10-2021 10:39 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by deckhanddavy (Post 79746)
Hmm, I didn't know Premiere can upload directly to YouTube without rendering first. I'll look into it. I don't convert SDI to HDMI actually. It's captured in SD. Thx!

In the same post I said never use NLE, Whatever capture app that supports your device (not premiere), take the resulting file, de-interlace, resize and upload to youtube.

I've been tweaking my youtube workflow for over two years now and I settled on the following procedure:

- Capture raw 4:2:2 HuffYUV 720x480 - save these as the master files.
- De-interlace with QTGMC, crop to the bare active video area on all 4 corners and resize to 1440x1080 all in one script.
- Save the project file along with the corresponding master file
- Upload to youtube
- Delete the huge processed file

https://www.youtube.com/user/latoak34/videos

msgohan 09-10-2021 11:08 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by deckhanddavy (Post 79740)
I'm referring to the internal video conversion of the Panasonic DMR-ES46V (HDMI upscaling). The HDMI output from the DMR-ES46V can either be 720p or 1080p interlaced. Source being the Panasonic unit. I'll simply be capturing the HD output from the DMR-ES46V to the field recorder, nothing else. I purchased this unit out of curiosity mostly, to see how well the DMR-ES46V performs in it's HD upscaling. Again, this is just for my own curiosity and personal comparisons.

Spoiler alert: The deinterlacing of these Panasonic units sucks. Lots of stray combs. I think this particular model came out in 2007. Even the high-end real-time deinterlacers from that time can't compete with software solutions 14 years on (and these ones weren't even good for the time).

After the deinterlace to 480p, the "upscaling" is just a basic resize to 720p. The 1080i output is even more useless, since it requires a second deinterlace.

The VCR side of these units is fed into the digitizer via composite. The result is the same as if you hooked up a cheap VCR to the external inputs.

Unlike the other responses, I'm not against HDMI capture for VHS in general, but (with North American models) you have to be very careful to produce a result that isn't worse than a traditional lossless capture.

Because there is no 480i option, I losslessly capture 480p from the HDMI output of my DVD recorders, and select the original fields in Avisynth. The result is the unmolested 480i. From there, further software processing can be applied as desired.

lollo2 09-10-2021 12:28 PM

Quote:

The result is the unmolested 480i
Are you sure that the de-interlacing process in the Panasonic is lossless? I would be surprised!

Edit: I mean lossless de-interlacing, not lossless compression

lordsmurf 09-10-2021 01:45 PM

For Youtube, I convert to 4:2:2 high bitrate H.264, before upload, and never upload a lossless. I'm honestly not sure I see the point of a lossless upload.

lollo2 09-10-2021 02:33 PM

For long videos (> 10 minutes), I also compress to x264 before uploading to youtube, with a crf=17.

RobustReviews 09-10-2021 02:37 PM

I upload full uncompressed, but I'm not convinced it makes any difference.

msgohan 09-10-2021 02:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by lollo2 (Post 79775)
Are you sure that the de-interlacing process in the Panasonic is lossless?

Yes. Apart from actual video, I used analog tuner noise as a stress test. Captured HDMI and S-Video outputs at the same time, compared field-by-field.

Quote:

I would be surprised!
Actually, the only Bob-type deinterlacer I know of that alters the original fields is QTGMC (when lossless is not enabled). Are there others?

lollo2 09-10-2021 03:16 PM

Quote:

Yes. Apart from actual video, I used analog tuner noise as a stress test. Captured HDMI and S-Video outputs at the same time, compared field-by-field.
Understood.

Quote:

Actually, the only Bob-type deinterlacer I know of that alters the original fields is QTGMC
In my understanding:

Bob without (0.0,1.0)
Yadiff without mode=1
MVBob
MCBob
TempGaussMC (father of QTGMC)
...

Not important, everybody today is using QTGMC (except me using nnedi3, or QTGMC lossless, for material I want to filter spatial-temporally and interlace back at the end)

msgohan 09-10-2021 03:57 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by lollo2 (Post 79788)
Bob without (0.0,1.0)
Yadiff without mode=1
MVBob
MCBob
TempGaussMC

In my memory, the bolded three are all spiritual/actual predecessors of QTGMC, but thanks for naming them.

Yadif without mode=1 isn't a bobber, so that doesn't count. :)

I forgot about Avisynth's own Bob at default settings! Touché.


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