Quantcast Output choices on VirtualDub and Tmpgenc - digitalFAQ Forum
  #1  
07-09-2010, 11:24 PM
Steve(MS) Steve(MS) is offline
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I have some DVDs that were copies of Vhs that were recorded on a cheap VCR some time ago.
I don't have the VHS copies themselves so I can't recopy them.
What I intend on is to do some adjustments primarily to color saturation, brightness, contrast
and maybe color adjustment tweaks on occasion
and add noise reduction to offset filtering and re-encoding.
I have managed to play around with Vdub and tmpgenc and get the filtered results generated into new MPEGs but I have lingering questions if I am using optimum output settings on Vdub and TMPGENc.
All the DVDs were recorded at SP speed so I assume there will be some loss when filtered through Vdub/Tmpgenc, whether or not it is even advisable to try such a process as this with good enough results is also a question in my mind.
I am green to video editing and encoding hence some of my questions might show how ignorant I am about this subject.
Anyway, I don't want to make this post an all inclusive line of newbie questions so I will outline
a few of them.
I see from GSpot that they were recorded DVDs 720 X 480, at least that is what I get out of it.
So here are the questions.
Vdub output choice
I used huffyuv but I see it can be configured but
I don't have the knowledge to make a correct decision about settings.

1 What is the best Huffyuv configuration or
should I go with uncompressed?

2 For Tmpgenc should I use 720 X 480 or use
what you have in the guide?

3 What Bitrate would be a good starting point
in TMPGENC if not what was in the guide?

4 Is it necessary to demux prior to using these 2 programs if I don't need to do any work on the audio?

Thanks in advance.
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  #2  
07-10-2010, 09:54 AM
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You'll be misled by a lot of dogma on amateur sites, and by users on the amateur sites that have forums, when it concerns re-encoding and loss. However, most of that -- the idea that "all re-encoding incurs quality loss" -- isn't necessarily true. It's done daily with everything you watch. This, of course, is good news for you!

Loss is mostly determined by the input and output, as well as filtering you do after input and before output. When it comes to most DVD recorders, major loss happened simply by using SP mode. A portion of your filter work may actually be spent undoing that damage.

VirtualDub is a fairly open-ended editor/encoder, so you can output to uncompressed video. This means you won't incur any added re-compression loss at that stage. TMPGEnc is a family of products (from Pegasys Inc aka Tsunami), although I'll assume you're referring to the TMPGEnc Plus 2.5 MPEG encoder. While MPEG format can have loss, it's not necessarily guaranteed to happen or even noticeable when it does happen. Much of that would depend on your end settings.

GSpot should be accurate for most streams -- almost 100% reliable for DVD recorder-made discs -- so I would say it's safe to assume 720x480 is accurate. That would correspond to SP mode on virtually all DVD recorders.

There's really no need to configure HuffYUV. By default, it should be set to the best setting. In fact, it literally says "best setting" by the two best settings! Because I almost never change these, I would have to open Vdub, and look at them to double-check what those are. So here I go...

1. You can honestly run with either the "(best)" or the "(fastest)" settings. There's no affect on image quality. Judging from my two main encoding systems, I have one set to one, and the other set to the other. I can't tell any difference. If I had to pick one, I'd say go for "best". This really affects decoding speed and CPU use more than anything else. In real-world use, in an age of multi-core CPUs and multi-TB hard drives, there's no detectable advantage of one over the other.

2. Use what you need. If your source is sharpened VHS video, then 720x480 may work well for you. If it's standard VHS quality, then 352x480 Half D1 lets you both (1) put more on a disc and (2) do it with a higher bitrate allocation. Look at the MPEG bitrate charts (bottom of that page in the link).

3. Again, see the video bitrate charts. I try to get video as close to 8000kbps (8.0Mbps) for 720x480 as I can, or 4000k when using 352x480. If the content is noisy, sometimes I want superbit rates -- 9000k for 720, or 5000k for 352. There's not correct answer without seeing the content and running a few brief tests with short clips. More compression generally means using 2-pass VBR for retaining quality. Expanding to DVD+R DL media is another option.

4. Nope. VirtualDub can "direct stream copy" the audio (no encoding/change), and TMPGEnc will use re-encode only if given audio input. The only foreseeable need for demux may come for authoring. Much of that would depend on what you're using. BatchDemux and/or TMPGEnc Plus demux great, as does the Womble software. A number of tools can demux, but those come to mind first, as I use them near-daily.

That it?

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  #3  
07-10-2010, 11:31 PM
Steve(MS) Steve(MS) is offline
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I had read the guide about bitrates but really didn't understand why I was getting 720 instead of 352 but now that you have explained it, I understand it better.
I will be aware of SP from now on.
I am using 2.5 so you assumed correctly.
I had ran 2 short clips thru vdub'
converting ac3 to uncompressed audio and at the same time converting video to huffyuv and adding
filters to video.
Then ran them through 2.5 converting to mpeg
with the 720 X480 size, I had tried different bitrates but when I saw your chart, settled on 8000 using 90%quality setting with CQ, more or less shooting for the same size file that I started out with.
The 2 clips were somewhat extreme examples, one
was way too dark and the other was overly bright with color saturation to boot.
I wasn't able to help the dark clip very much
but had better luck with the over saturated one except when I toned down color, brightness and contrast, all the while adding various noise filters to see how they effected it...I even played with colormill but that one is way over my head for now.
It did turn out fairly well except background noise was easier seen in the filtered version( I assume that noise was original to the tape).
No doubt I made many mistakes along the way choosing the filters and more than likely not stacking them in the proper way....
at least I am aware I might be making mistakes..
that is good no?
I was more or less in a haze about the output settings for Vdub and 2.5 and you have provided
well thought out info.
I will work more with the Vdub filters and see how the filters in 2.5 work, maybe dabble in the dark arts to find out the best filters in Vdub...
I'll run the original clips back through, try uncompressed and using 352 with appropriate bitrates and see how it turns out.
Thanks for the time and reply!
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07-11-2010, 05:30 AM
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Indeed, filter order plays a major importance in how the actual video ends up. You're always welcome to attach short sample clips from your source (max 7.9MB file size), as well as attach the VCF files (save processing settings). I can take a look at what you have, and see if there's anything I'd change, be it filter order or even the filters themselves.

I'd say lossless HuffYUV compression would be fine for you.

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  #5  
07-13-2010, 02:11 AM
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I played around with the clip some more and found
something that works for me by using the brightness, contrast and color settings in one Vdub filter, then process it.
Then use noise reduction in 2.5.
If I run into something where I could use your input on, I'll post it up with a short clip.
Your suggestions were very helpful.
Thanks.
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07-13-2010, 07:56 AM
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Be sure to run tests with short clips. By this I mean to
  1. Encode/restore a clip
  2. Convert to MPEG
  3. Author short clip
  4. Burn to DVD-RW/DVD+RW (Note: 1GB minimum size required for DVD-Video specs. I suggest taking a 1GB VOB file from another DVD, dropping it into a "ROM" folder at the same level as VIDEO_TS.)
  5. Watch on TV. Verify your filters help, not further harm or add new errors.
The computer monitor can be misleading compared to the TV.

Many consumer monitors are really badly off, in terms of calibration for levels (black to white), gamma (overall brightness and gradation of grays), and color purity (oversaturated, usually).

I've spent a ton of money calibrating what I use.

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  #7  
07-14-2010, 08:34 PM
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I found out about the difference in monitor and TV when I did the first clips, I had to use more negative brightness so it would effect TV.
I didn't place a gig VOB in with the clip so I will do that too.
I haven't had a decent Author program, was using Womble but today got the B&H DVD WS2.
Played around with it a little, put in the DLL per instructions.
I don't think I will have much trouble learning it, got it to output for me several times.
The only thing is I don't have playback sound while using the program but it imports and generates audio along with video after output so that is no big deal.
I imagine I have something wrong with an audio codec or I don't have the one this program needs for playback.
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07-15-2010, 06:59 AM
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Ulead DVD Workshop's preview function is not very good. Most authoring software has terrible preview, to be honest. You're best to just export the project and open it in actual DVD player software, or burn a RW disc and view on the TV. Then decide if the project is 100% perfect, or if it needs more tweaks.

Remember that there is a video tutorial on this forum, a video you can watch, to learn using DVD Workshop 2.
And yes, it's really easy to use.

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