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  #1  
11-24-2018, 10:00 AM
PMVcr PMVcr is offline
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Hi,
looking for advise on what pro card to buy for VHS (CVBS) digitization. The contenders are https://www.startech.com/eu/AV/Converte ... XHDCAP60L2, Epiphan and Magewell.

Any advise is welcome.
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  #2  
11-24-2018, 05:13 PM
nai1ed nai1ed is offline
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Most people here recommend using an ATI All in Wonder card, preferably one with the ATI 200 chipset. That means building an older PC with an AGP card, unless you get the ATI AIW X600 which is PCIE.

I just put together a system with an ATI X600 using an HP Thinclient T610 with Windows XP.





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  #3  
11-24-2018, 06:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PMVcr View Post
Hi,
looking for advise on what pro card to buy for VHS (CVBS) digitization. The contenders are https://www.startech.com/eu/AV/Converte ... XHDCAP60L2, Epiphan and Magewell.

Any advise is welcome.
If you try to use an HD capture cards with SD, you will have issues. Most HD cards, especially all external USB/etc, have SD a poorly-planned afterthought "feature".

- Magewell is known bad for SD capture.
- Blackmagic is known bad for SD capture.

StarTech is mostly a rebadger of sorts, putting their own pretty braded shell around devices that were R&D'd or released by other companies. So the trick with anything they make video-wise is trying to figure out what's actually inside. Amusingly, when you type in "startech rebadge" into Google, the top result is for that card. It's actually a Micomsoft SC-512N1-L/DVI, which has the same problem as other cheap Chinese capture doodads (yet sells for undeserved $$$).

You'd be much better served using a card known for quality SD capturing, with emphasis in specific ATI cards (AIW, 600 USB and clones). There are others. The best part is all are $150 or less, not the insane $300+ for the inferior (for analog) HD cards.

Note that I do have a few extras available in the marketplace, to help site members acquire known-good supplies for this hobby.

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  #4  
11-25-2018, 04:08 AM
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Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
If you try to use an HD capture cards with SD, you will have issues. Most HD cards, especially all external USB/etc, have SD a poorly-planned afterthought "feature".

- Magewell is known bad for SD capture.
- Blackmagic is known bad for SD capture.

StarTech is mostly a rebadger of sorts, putting their own pretty braded shell around devices that were R&D'd or released by other companies. So the trick with anything they make video-wise is trying to figure out what's actually inside. Amusingly, when you type in "startech rebadge" into Google, the top result is for that card. It's actually a Micomsoft SC-512N1-L/DVI, which has the same problem as other cheap Chinese capture doodads (yet sells for undeserved $$$).

You'd be much better served using a card known for quality SD capturing, with emphasis in specific ATI cards (AIW, 600 USB and clones). There are others. The best part is all are $150 or less, not the insane $300+ for the inferior (for analog) HD cards.

Note that I do have a few extras available in the marketplace, to help site members acquire known-good supplies for this hobby.
So stay away from HD and go pure analogue for the choice of SD capture card. Then this one should be fine http://www.magewell.com/products/pro-capture-hexa-cvbs, right?

So if I got this right; the most important component is the A/D converter chip, if that is good no mater what card I choose the results should be good.
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  #5  
11-25-2018, 04:25 AM
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Originally Posted by PMVcr View Post
So if I got this right; the most important component is the A/D converter chip, if that is good no mater what card I choose the results should be good.
No, that's wrong.

Chipsets can be used well or poorly. A chip doesn't make hardware, but it is the basis for it. You can have great chipsets on lousy hardware, and lousy chips on ... more lousy hardware. The goal is a good chipset on a good device. That takes research, be it hands-on or reading/Googling. Usually the former, not the latter, but it depends on the device. This site extensively documents some items do to the exquisite chipsets in use.

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  #6  
11-25-2018, 04:44 AM
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Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
No, that's wrong.

Chipsets can be used well or poorly. A chip doesn't make hardware, but it is the basis for it. You can have great chipsets on lousy hardware, and lousy chips on ... more lousy hardware. The goal is a good chipset on a good device. That takes research, be it hands-on or reading/Googling. Usually the former, not the latter, but it depends on the device. This site extensively documents some items do to the exquisite chipsets in use.
Ok, got it.
So if I wanted to know if the http://www.magewell.com/products/pro-capture-hexa-cvbs, was a good card for analogue capture I would need to know what chip it uses and other info, or simply test it.
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  #7  
11-25-2018, 05:10 AM
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But you also must exactly what you're looking at, when testing, and have a battery of test tapes. Not just any tapes, but tapes known to challenge equipment. This is why, for example, Amazon layman reviews are useless, unqualified opinions based on nothing. And thus why opinion vary wildly, from 1 star to 5. The items are not always professionally reviewed or vetted.

Why are you so endeared to a $500 piece of hardware? In the 1990s, yeah, sure, that was the price for good hardware. But in the 2010s, that price is ridiculous for quality analog capture. It seems that Magewell has simply slapped the term "pro" on the card, and hopes to cash in on it. It does advertise deinterlace and hardware framerate conversion, but both are ill-advised. (1) You should never damaged a source capture that way, neither deinterlace nor frame conversion, (2) framerate conversion is often best done in software with mere IVTC+speedup, or even deinterlace+speedup (3) deinterlacing should be done in software, and with an interlaced capture copy retained for archives.

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  #8  
11-25-2018, 05:43 AM
PMVcr PMVcr is offline
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I only need to capture the pre processed (comb filter + TBC) video signal all the pos-production will be done on the pc side, if I will do any at all. Plan is to capture native interlaced signal and convert it to digital (raw or lossless compressed) and the archive it. But after reading this im more inclined to go VHS PAL pro deck => composite out=> combfilter =>component out =>TBC=> ADC=>digital capture 4:4:4 => to PC with an HD capture card. So basically any HD card with 4:4:4 will do.
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  #9  
11-25-2018, 06:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PMVcr View Post
But after reading this im more inclined to go VHS PAL pro deck => composite out=> combfilter =>component out =>TBC=> ADC=>digital capture 4:4:4 => to PC with an HD capture card. So basically any HD card with 4:4:4 will do.
That's not a functional workflow.

- Timebase correction must be done as earlier as is feasible.
- Analog is chroma/luma, not component, and that will add a potentially damaging processing step.
- 4:4:4 does nothing when 4:2:2 was already generous

You're chasing phantoms. I have no idea what you've been reading, but you're now on a wild goose chase. Such a workflow will never work as you think or wish.

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  #10  
11-25-2018, 06:17 AM
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So how about vhs pro deck =>comb filter -> external conversion to digital -> digital capture in 4:4:4 -> and the rest in software.

Or

VHS PAL pro deck =>composite out=>TBC=>composite => to external comb filter (Pioneer LX90 DVD - outputs component) =>Component => Denoiser => Component (YUV) => pc capture card
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  #11  
11-25-2018, 06:27 AM
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Composite is probably worse than component. The separate chroma/luma is mushed together into a single signal, and you get analog artifacts like dot crawl and chroma shimmering as a result. Ideally you'd keep it separated, s-video, and neither composite nor component. SCART is sort of like component, but not entirely.

The issue with component output, again, is that is can harm interlacing quality. You must be careful converting.

The bigger issue is then that component is an HD carrier, not SD, and then you're back at the problem of HD cards handling SD quite poorly. Because you won't find SD cards with component.

If you go down that path, lots of samples clips should be vetted by forum members, searched for problems.

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  #12  
11-25-2018, 06:45 AM
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Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
Composite is probably worse than component. The separate chroma/luma is mushed together into a single signal, and you get analog artifacts like dot crawl and chroma shimmering as a result. Ideally you'd keep it separated, s-video, and neither composite nor component. SCART is sort of like component, but not entirely.

The issue with component output, again, is that is can harm interlacing quality. You must be careful converting.

The bigger issue is then that component is an HD carrier, not SD, and then you're back at the problem of HD cards handling SD quite poorly. Because you won't find SD cards with component.

If you go down that path, lots of samples clips should be vetted by forum members, searched for problems.
Problem is the Sony SVO-1500P deck only has composite out (I think) no s-video out and the VHS tape are recordings of analogue TV over antenna and analogue satellite.
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  #13  
11-25-2018, 07:02 AM
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For the price of that Magewell, you could get an outstanding JVC or Panasonic S-VHS VCR with s-video out, and a known-quality capture card, and still probably have some money left over.

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  #14  
11-25-2018, 07:20 AM
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Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
For the price of that Magewell, you could get an outstanding JVC or Panasonic S-VHS VCR with s-video out, and a known-quality capture card, and still probably have some money left over.
I sticking with the Sony SVO (tried and tested). Question is what external ADC to use in the chain (going all digital on PC capture card).
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  #15  
11-25-2018, 07:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
If you try to use an HD capture cards with SD, you will have issues. Most HD cards, especially all external USB/etc, have SD a poorly-planned afterthought "feature".

- Magewell is known bad for SD capture.
- Blackmagic is known bad for SD capture.

You alway say the Blackmagic card is worse.
It's true for all of the analog inputs but it looks like you have never try to capture with the hdmi input. Connect a DVD-Recorder with HDMI Outputs for example the Panasonic EH65 (it is the same as the Panasonic ES15 but with harddisk and HDMI out) to a HDMI-Splitter who delete the HDCP copy protection and capture the native stream in 576i/480i.
If you have tried this way and then again you say the capture card is worse I would accept it.
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  #16  
11-25-2018, 08:10 AM
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Originally Posted by Bogilein View Post
You alway say the Blackmagic card is worse.
It's true for all of the analog inputs but it looks like you have never try to capture with the hdmi input. Connect a DVD-Recorder with HDMI Outputs for example the Panasonic EH65 (it is the same as the Panasonic ES15 but with harddisk and HDMI out) to a HDMI-Splitter who delete the HDCP copy protection and capture the native stream in 576i/480i.
If you have tried this way and then again you say the capture card is worse I would accept it.
Your workflow was on my mind, but I could not recall the exact models you're using. I think you potentially have a good setup. What I'd like to see is some capture, showing that the EH65 isn't harming quality in HDMI output. The Blackmagic doesn't have issues with HDMI in, only SD analog. That is something I'd like to try, when time/funds permit.

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  #17  
11-25-2018, 08:29 AM
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I'm also using the HDMI approach, though with a JVC DR-MH300. HDMI works fine with the blackmagic, though there are way cheaper alternatives out there for capturing HDMI.

Quote:
VHS PAL pro deck =>composite out=>TBC=>composite => to external comb filter (Pioneer LX90 DVD - outputs component) =>Component => Denoiser => Component (YUV) => pc capture card
If OP already has the LX90, I suppose that could be worth testing provided they can get a HDMI splitter that works. Though, for a comb filter to work it needs the original signal, if it's been through a TBC, it's been digitized and converted to analog again and the Y/C crosstalk (that the comb filter in the TBC didn't deal with) will have been embedded in the signal.
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  #18  
11-25-2018, 08:50 AM
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So it should be like this:

VHS PAL pro deck =>composite out => to external comb filter (Pioneer LX90 DVD - outputs component) => Component => TBC=>composite or component? - don't know what TBC in PAL outputs to=> Denoiser => Component (YUV) => pc capture card
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  #19  
11-25-2018, 08:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hodgey View Post
I'm also using the HDMI approach, though with a JVC DR-MH300. HDMI works fine with the blackmagic, though there are way cheaper alternatives out there for capturing HDMI.
Til the year 2016 there was no better card for HDMI capturing as the Blackmagic Intensity. After 2016 I don't know. One advantage is you can use up to date hardware for capturing with the blackmagic.
Some words about the JVC DR-MH300. He can only capture the range 16-255 and the jitter correction isn't as good as the panasonic dmr's in passthrough mode. But the JVC had a agc which work good but not perfect. The panasonics only pull the videocontent to the standard value and often clip the white levels.
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11-25-2018, 10:27 AM
hodgey hodgey is offline
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Yup, that mirrors my experience with the JVC. Jitter correction is not great, so either a deck with a TBC or a DVR with better jitter correction is needed for that. The AGC mostly works well but it can occasionally clip whites if the input levels are very bad.

On the plus side it seems to work fine without a HDMI splitter unless you give it a macrovision protected tape, where it demands HDCP support after maybe 5-10 seconds. Never seen it falsely trigger with non-macrovision tapes.
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