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  #1  
10-04-2011, 05:15 PM
JLegnon JLegnon is offline
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I want to record some game play videos of my Nintendo NES . The NES puts out 256x240 .
Using ATI MMC , whats resolution should I record it at ? Should I do MPEG-1 ?
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  #2  
10-04-2011, 05:24 PM
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The resolution of the NES internally is irrelevant.

The only signal it outputs is compliant standard NTSC video -- capture at 720x480 interlaced.

It has more detail than VHS, so it's going to be greater than 256xres.

And because it outputs interlaced video, it has to resx480. Wherever you read "x240" is wrong, and the person has confused analog's "240 lines" with being a digital measurement. The "240 lines" is translated at about 125-150% along the first axis -- the first number in a res x res measure. A 240 lines detail equates to about 320 at best (theory), but falls into the upper 200s (250-300 in practice) for SP VHS sources -- somewhat lower for EP/SLP recording modes. VHS has more working against its clarity than resolution bandwidth alone. That's where approximate 250x480 to 300x480 comes in on this site's resolution charts, and why 352x480 is perfectly adequate for VHS captures.

To create high quality progressive videos (i.e., Youtube), run a quality deinterlace method.

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  #3  
10-04-2011, 06:11 PM
JLegnon JLegnon is offline
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Thanks for the quick reply . I'm glad I asked , because I would have set it up all wrong .
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  #4  
10-04-2011, 06:32 PM
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Every day, I save dozens (hundreds?) of people like you the pain and wasted time of doing things wrong.

It makes my own experiences of doing it wrong worthwhile; back in those early days, when I first started down the path of digital video, there was NOBODY to help me. We were all in the same confused boat back then. Up a creek, no paddle. Just wood and a pocket knife (make our own paddles). And in those days, a bad DVD burn was going to cost you a $9 blank!

It's not saving a person from a burning building, but it still feels good and noble.

Be sure to share some of your captures.

Ending on another note...

Are you still any good? I used to be a master at games like Mega Man. I'm now so terrible that I can't even make it to the first boss without the game being over. I don't know what happened. Maybe my hands are too big for the controller? Too old and slow? I don't get it. I was awesome at Megaman 25 years ago, but now even the word "suck" isn't adequate enough to describe my pitiful level of gameplay. It's so sad.

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  #5  
10-04-2011, 09:00 PM
NJRoadfan NJRoadfan is offline
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Well its not quite interlaced video. Most older games systems like the NES outputted video in a non-standard progressive form (59.94fps in NTSC, 50fps in PAL), but with half the vertical resolution called "240p". They could get away with it because CRT TVs really didn't seem to mind that type of video. Whether or not your capture card works properly with it depends on the chipset. Some outright refuse to capture any 240p video, others (incorrectly) interpret it as standard interlaced NTSC video, and a small subset can natively handle the video with no problem.

More background here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Low-definition_television
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  #6  
10-04-2011, 09:10 PM
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Quoting that (edited for clarity and pertinence to topic):

Quote:
A VHS videotape could be considered SDTV due to its resolution (approximately 320 480i), but using VHS for professional production will yield results comparable to LDTV because of VHS's low bandwidth. VHS supports interlace and high motion, which are not typical of LDTV signals.

Older video game console and home computers generated a nonstandard NTSC or PAL signal which placed both fields on top of each other. This is equivalent to 240p and 288p respectively. Conversely, the FCC forbade TV stations from broadcasting in this format.

With the introduction of 16-bit game consoles, 480i was supported for the first time, but rarely used due to limited memory and processing power. Thus, 240p remained the primary format on all fifth generation consoles (Sega Saturn, PlayStation and Nintendo 64) With the advent of sixth generation consoles and the launch of the Dreamcast, 480i use become more common, and 240p usage declined.

More recent game systems tend to use only properly interlaced NTSC or PAL in addition to higher resolution modes, except when running games designed for older, compatible systems in their native modes. The PlayStation 2 generates 240p/288p if a PlayStation game calls for this mode, as do many Virtual Console emulated games on Wii. Nintendo's official software development kit documentation refers to 240p as 'non-interlaced mode' or 'double-strike'.
I'd forgotten some of this, but it still doesn't really change the application of the advice: You're pretty much stuck with recording at standard HQ resolution NTSC: 720x480 interlaced. Trying to capture anything else will be a fairly futile endeavor. Do feel free to try a 240p60 signal, but expect failure.

I may try to capture 240p with some of my card setups, to see what may work, vs what may fail.

Then you can see me kamikaze (unwillingly) on some games.

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  #7  
10-04-2011, 09:50 PM
NJRoadfan NJRoadfan is offline
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I should pull out my NES and SNES and give it a try. I know the ATI 600 USB stick doesn't seem to mind capturing that type of video, my AVer HD DVR won't even touch it. Even if one has to capture 480i, converting back to the "native" video only requires a simple de-interlace to a 59.94fps video file, the content is progressive so no need for de-bob or anything fancy. Mega Man is a good test game, the blaster fire is a good way to detect interlacing.
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  #8  
10-04-2011, 10:39 PM
NJRoadfan NJRoadfan is offline
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OK, I just tested this. Capture at 480i, then use the built in VirtualDub filter to deinterlace Use "Discard fields" for 720x240 or "Duplicate Fields" for 720x480 (basically doubles the lines for you), for field order use "double frame rate, top field first" (or bottom depending on your video card). The result is smooth output just like the original console.

Last edited by NJRoadfan; 10-04-2011 at 11:28 PM.
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  #9  
10-05-2011, 10:34 AM
JLegnon JLegnon is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJRoadfan View Post
OK, I just tested this. Capture at 480i, then use the built in VirtualDub filter to deinterlace Use "Discard fields" for 720x240 or "Duplicate Fields" for 720x480 (basically doubles the lines for you), for field order use "double frame rate, top field first" (or bottom depending on your video card). The result is smooth output just like the original console.
Cool , thanks for the help guys !

With ATI MMC , should I capture 720x480 deinterlaced ? Or 720x480 interlaced and then do the method you said , using VirtualDub ...... I'm not familiar with VirtualDub or those other editing features your talking about , do they come with MMC or is it a separate different editing program you use after you capture the video ?

Haha lordsmurf , its true , that NES controller does seem alot smaller . I'm not as good as I used to be , I'm gonna have to do some practice sessions . I'm not gonna be doing anything too crazy , just try and beat the games without dying .
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  #10  
10-05-2011, 03:16 PM
JLegnon JLegnon is offline
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Ok , I researched and Virtualdub is not a part of MMC but a whole other program . Got it .Thanks for the help guys ,
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  #11  
10-06-2011, 05:53 PM
JLegnon JLegnon is offline
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Heres a test video . It looks like I'm playing drunk but its the damn lag , I'm gonna set up a TV to play on when I really record it . I captured this at 720x480 Deinterlaced . http://youtu.be/x6CP4-1dxSs

I recorded another video 720x480 interlaced and imported that into VirtualDub but I had lots of problems , with resolutions , it made it 720x960 or something like that , I'd resize it but it was still weird . So thats why I captured Deinterlaced .

Any feed back would be great .

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  #12  
10-07-2011, 11:06 PM
NJRoadfan NJRoadfan is offline
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Youtube's compression makes it hard to tell and I think they are limited to 30fps anyway. The ATI Theater chips are a good choice for this project though, their comb filters are one of the best out there. My footage is clearly marred by dot crawl even though the SVHS VCRs I have claim to have 3d comb filters. They likely are having trouble adapting with the oddball 240p video. Applying the DotCrawl filter in VirtualDub after deinterlacing seems to clean it up for the most part. The only way to truly escape the problem with the NES is to mod it for RGB output and then convert down to S-video. Thankfully newer consoles like the SNES natively output S-Video.

As for lag, the separate TV is the best route.
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  #13  
10-07-2011, 11:55 PM
NJRoadfan NJRoadfan is offline
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Here is a comparison of the original 480i/29.97fps capture (cropped, resized to 352x480)
http://www.digitalfaq.com/forum/atta...1&d=1318049404

and the de-interlaced 240p/59.94fps processed file (cropped, resized to 352x240, Decomb filter applied)
http://www.digitalfaq.com/forum/atta...1&d=1318049404

One thing I am noticing is that there are less compression artifacts on the interlaced file (due to the lower frame rate I presume), but the built in de-interlacing in all the media players I have used are choking on that file. I get a lot of erroneous bobbing up and down. Both were compressed with TMPGEnc using Constant Quality set to 100, and 4100kbps max bitrate (to meet forum limits).


Attached Files
File Type: mpg mmoriginal.mpg (15.78 MB, 14 downloads)
File Type: mpg mmdeinterlaced.mpg (15.93 MB, 11 downloads)
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  #14  
10-08-2011, 11:25 AM
JLegnon JLegnon is offline
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Cool , so it looks like I'm good to go .

The mmdeinterlaced looks good and smooth . The original uncompressed video without the artifacts , probably looks exactly like playing it on the console .
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  #15  
10-10-2011, 12:52 PM
JLegnon JLegnon is offline
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So I recorded another video and for some reason it stopped recording right at 30 minutes. I have it set at "Windows Limit" and have plenty of hard drive space, like 40 gigs. Any ideas why it stopped right at 30 minutes ? Is there a setting I'm missing ? Heres the video, I'm gonna redo it because I died once and its not the whole game. http://youtu.be/Xs2Bq3wCjas

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  #16  
10-10-2011, 01:01 PM
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lordsmurf lordsmurf is online now
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You can embed Youtube videos.
Code:
[youtube]Xs2Bq3wCjas[/youtube]
The video capture may have stopped because you accidentally used the one-touch recording option. See what it is set at.

Aside from that, refer to this guide: How to Prevent Dropped Frames and Audio Sync Problems
Significant frame drops could stop a capture.
Is there a TBC in the mix? Loss of signal, even if for just a few frames, may cause capture stoppage.

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  #17  
10-10-2011, 03:16 PM
JLegnon JLegnon is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
Aside from that, refer to this guide: How to Prevent Dropped Frames and Audio Sync Problems
Significant frame drops could stop a capture.
Is there a TBC in the mix? Loss of signal, even if for just a few frames, may cause capture stoppage.
I think it was the one-touch record setting . I checked it out and it was set to 30 minutes , I didn't know there was a timer . Cool , glad its not some bug where it randomly stops recording for no reason .
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