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  #1  
09-15-2018, 01:24 PM
jd7c5 jd7c5 is offline
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Hi, I've been lurking and reading through this community which has been very helpful. Now I want to get involved.

So my project is to archive my family's collection of VHS tapes ranging from 1993-2006. The footage was recorded to compact VHS tape cassette (VHS-C) using a Panasonic hand held camcorder. The collection contains around 60 cassette's. I think these tapes have a 30 minute run time in short play mode. So approx estimate of 30 hours of footage to archive. Also I'm from the UK so this is PAL format material.

I'm in no rush and looking to embark on a project to achieve a high quality outcome.

I've attached some footage I have extracted as a test. I want to discuss what I can do to improve the process before I go into full production mode and tackle the whole collection over time.

Here is what I have so far:
1) Panasonic VHS-C to VHS Adapter cassette
2) Sony SLV-SE740 VHS Player -> SCART Output -> SCART to Composite Adaptor
3) Composite Cable -> August VBP100 Capture Device Amazon Link -> USB
4) VirutalDub

Attached Files:
Test.mp4 - Raw capture, only filter applied is to de-interlace keeping both frames PAL (25fps x 2 = 50fps), compressed for upload using Handbrake to mp4 H.264

Test-Filters - same as above with the addition of filters in Virtualdub (Camcorder Color denoise 1.6 MT, Color Mil 2.1)

There are aspects of the test footage attached that I'm not happy with

1) The extreme wobble at the top of the frames
2) The colour which seems to give the impression of a red sunset evening. (Too much red?). Tried playing with the color mil filter, my attempts are shown in the second attached video (Test-filters.mp4). I'm not sure I improved things!
3) General tracking wobble?

So in summary looking to discuss the following:
1) General feedback on the process so far?
2) My research suggests the best thing I can do to improve the quality of the capture is to use a TBC
3) TBC - I've tried searching but they seem to be impossible to get hold of. So I want to ask the community if there are other avenues to explore for getting hold of one and if this is as worth while as I believe it might be.

Thanks,
JD


Attached Files
File Type: mp4 Test.mp4 (5.83 MB, 7 downloads)
File Type: mp4 Test-Filters.mp4 (6.77 MB, 4 downloads)
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  #2  
09-18-2018, 01:02 AM
sanlyn sanlyn is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jd7c5 View Post
Hi, I've been lurking and reading through this community which has been very helpful. Now I want to get involved.
Welcome to digitalfaq!

Quote:
Originally Posted by jd7c5 View Post
Here is what I have so far:
1) Panasonic VHS-C to VHS Adapter cassette
2) Sony SLV-SE740 VHS Player -> SCART Output -> SCART to Composite Adaptor
3) Composite Cable -> August VBP100 Capture Device Amazon Link -> USB
4) VirutalDub
Lines 1) and 4) above are good choices. I take it that Virtualdub captures are YUY2 colorspace with lossless compression using huffyuv or Lagarith.

#2 is a serious problem. SONY has made no recommended tape players after 1991. The model you mention is an entry level machine that lacks robust tracking and has no line tbc. It's responsible for the upper twitter and distortion in your samples. In case you didn't notice, the lower third as well of your sample has plenty of wiggle and warping as wel, and that doesn't count the head-switching noise at the bottom of the frame. The top-side distortion is known as flagging. the overall frame jitter and nervousness is due to lack of a line-level tbc and to lack of a frame-level tbc. Each type of tbc solves different problems.

There are plenty of frame-level tbc's about, most of them are in dreadful working condition or are outright defects out of the box. Working frame-level tbc's are often listed in the forum's Marketplace section. Their performance has been tested.

Line-level tbc's are available as external units only in the form of hideously expensive pro shop units. Most users get their line-level tbc's builtin as components of recommended high-end tape players, which in good condition offer playback that will dwarf the poor quality of entry level machines. Such players are often available in the Marketplace as well.

Another solution that is available are legacy Panasonic DMR-Es10 and Es15 DVD recorders -- not used as recorders, but used as pass-thru units between player and capture device in order to take advantage of the pass-thru's effective line- and frame-level corrective circuits. These Panasonic units are found as either NTSC or as PAL units, which are not interchangeable and which should be used with their aggressive noise reduction circuits disabled to prevent motion smearing and posterizing effects. It's possible to try other DVD machines, but most will not function in pass-thru mode or will be far less powerful or effective. You will find a great many examples of posted videos created using pass-thru tbc's. People have used, demonstrated, tested, and discussed pass-thru units for several years in tech forums, so it's surprising that you haven't encountered them earlier: https://forum.videohelp.com/threads/...hat-do-you-use.

Item #3 is also a serious problem. Unless you have some reason for using composite output, you should always use s-video for analog tape capture. You'll get less noise, more detail, and cleaner color with s-video. If your player doesn't have s-video output, you're at a troublesome disadvantage.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jd7c5 View Post
Attached Files:
Test.mp4 - Raw capture, only filter applied is to de-interlace keeping both frames PAL (25fps x 2 = 50fps), compressed for upload using Handbrake to mp4 H.264
Test.mp4 is not a "raw capture'. I take it that hopefully you are not capturing to mp4, which is a costly way of permanently crippling quality from the outset, involving serious losses and compression effects that can't be resolved later. h.264/mp4 is a lossy, final-delivery encode that was never designed for further modification without serious degradation. The audio in your samples is also degraded through lossy compression. Audio is almost always captured as lossless PCM and is not encoded until the final output stage.

The deinterlacer recommended for restoration work is QTGMC.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jd7c5 View Post
Test-Filters - same as above with the addition of filters in Virtualdub (Camcorder Color denoise 1.6 MT, Color Mil 2.1)

There are aspects of the test footage attached that I'm not happy with

1) The extreme wobble at the top of the frames
2) The colour which seems to give the impression of a red sunset evening. (Too much red?). Tried playing with the color mil filter, my attempts are shown in the second attached video (Test-filters.mp4). I'm not sure I improved things!
3) General tracking wobble?
The color balance is looks artificial and unconvincing, and doesn't look at all too red to me. The overall filtered effect has a grimy, sooty look because brights have been suppressed, darks are crushed (dense darks with no detail), sky detail is badly clipped and unrecoverable, the image looks over-filtered, and overall detail is scarce. You can't expect a sharp or at least higher acutance image with more inner detail or texture from the player you're using. It simply can't happen. I've been through the same experience, and I have two old SONY VCRs in the closet to prove it. The one SONY that I was able to depend on was my original SLV-1985HF circa 1990, which I paid to have rebuilt several years ago at a cost that was far more than its original $350 USD 1990 retail price. SONY has not since made a competitive VCR that we would recommend. You would likely get more workable if noisier but more accurate results from a mainstream Panasonic. Of course a high-end player would obviously be the best choice. Generally speaking, JVC players or JVC clones (Phillips) are not recommended for use with VHS-C adapters.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jd7c5 View Post
So in summary looking to discuss the following:
1) General feedback on the process so far?
2) My research suggests the best thing I can do to improve the quality of the capture is to use a TBC
3) TBC - I've tried searching but they seem to be impossible to get hold of. So I want to ask the community if there are other avenues to explore for getting hold of one and if this is as worth while as I believe it might be.
While you face some difficulty finding the 'best' components, at least a pass-thru unit will give surprisingly improved results, especially in terms of scanline correction and frame stability. Little can be said about the image processing you mentioned; I can say that it does not seem to have been the right approach, but there is little I could do with the lossy encoded sample that was posted -- it's difficult and inconclusive to work with lossy samples, which respond poorly to restoration techniques. I strongly recommend that you submit original, unfiltered, lossless samples in their original colorspace. If you don't known how to create lossless samples with VirtualDub, just ask.
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  #3  
09-18-2018, 11:30 AM
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BarryTheCrab BarryTheCrab is offline
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There is a Datavideo tbc-1000 on EBay right now, looks clean but time is short, 3 hours from this posting.
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  #4  
09-18-2018, 04:17 PM
jd7c5 jd7c5 is offline
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Thanks for the reply sanlyn. I appreciate your time and input!

Quote:
Originally Posted by sanlyn View Post
I take it that Virtualdub captures are YUY2 colorspace with lossless compression using huffyuv or Lagarith.
I'm using UYVY, (see Color Space.png) attached to this post. I'm not using any compression to capture my first stage AVI file, space is not an issue presently.

Noted about the SONY player. I want to explore alternatives now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sanlyn View Post
Item #3 is also a serious problem. Unless you have some reason for using composite output, you should always use s-video for analog tape capture. You'll get less noise, more detail, and cleaner color with s-video. If your player doesn't have s-video output, you're at a troublesome disadvantage.
The SONY player does not support S-video out so hence the use of composite currently.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sanlyn View Post
Test.mp4 is not a "raw capture'. I take it that hopefully you are not capturing to mp4, which is a costly way of permanently crippling quality from the outset, involving serious losses and compression effects that can't be resolved later. h.264/mp4 is a lossy, final-delivery encode that was never designed for further modification without serious degradation. The audio in your samples is also degraded through lossy compression. Audio is almost always captured as lossless PCM and is not encoded until the final output stage.
I'm capturing to AVI first using virtual dub. The files are large which is fine for my storage on premises but for sharing with this community I took that AVI and ran it through Handbrake to create the mp4 I uploaded. Completely understand your points and would not attempt to actually archive using this method.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sanlyn View Post
The deinterlacer recommended for restoration work is QTGMC.
Sounds like a avisynth tool. http://avisynth.nl/index.php/QTGMC Noted thanks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sanlyn View Post
While you face some difficulty finding the 'best' components, at least a pass-thru unit will give surprisingly improved results, especially in terms of scanline correction and frame stability.
This sounds like an attractive avenue given my new appreciation for just how badly my Sony player is letting the side down!

so:

1) I'm going to research for a new player with line TBC AND/OR external frame TBC using ebay and the marketplace here
2) I'm going to research plan B to use that DVD pass through approach
3) Once I've got the "devices" I can turn my attention to the software side improvements

I'll start with Ebay and the marketplace here. Are there any other recommend resources to explore to get hold of better player devices and or TBC's?

Thanks again!

Quote:
Originally Posted by BarryTheCrab View Post
There is a Datavideo tbc-1000 on EBay right now, looks clean but time is short, 3 hours from this posting.
It must have gone already. I could only find this which is a few days older: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/DataVideo...sAAOSwsB9bmGkM


Attached Images
File Type: png Color Space.png (7.6 KB, 3 downloads)
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  #5  
09-18-2018, 04:46 PM
jd7c5 jd7c5 is offline
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I've seen lordsmurf post about his JVC HR-S7965EK. There are some available on Ebay. Is this a good option?

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/JVC-Super...YAAOSwrxVboAtg
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  #6  
09-18-2018, 05:03 PM
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BarryTheCrab BarryTheCrab is offline
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I won't go further in this thread, just to say sorry you missed it, it looked very nice, of course appearance is not a test. Follow the Marketplace here, and Ebay, be diligent in browsing. I have a nice workflow but I still look around! You might lucky on FB Marketplace, or Mercari. Crab...out.
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  #7  
09-18-2018, 05:03 PM
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lordsmurf lordsmurf is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jd7c5 View Post
Hi, I've been lurking and reading through this community which has been very helpful. Now I want to get involved.
Welcome to the site. Glad to have you.

Quote:
The footage was recorded to compact VHS tape cassette (VHS-C) using a Panasonic hand held camcorder.
That was such a horrible format. (We used it too, and now regret it. )

Quote:
I'm in no rush and looking to embark on a project to achieve a high quality outcome.
Not being in rush = a good thing.

Quote:
I've attached some footage I have extracted as a test. I want to discuss what I can do to improve the process before I go into full production mode and tackle the whole collection over time.
I already know what the problems are. Will reply more below...

Quote:
Here is what I have so far:
1) Panasonic VHS-C to VHS Adapter cassette
What model?
If you don't know, is is mostly metal?
Or perhaps just take a photo of it and upload to a reply.

Quote:
2) Sony SLV-SE740 VHS Player -> SCART Output -> SCART to Composite Adaptor
Yuck. Plain VHS VCR, and that's part of the problem.

Quote:
3) Composite Cable -> August VBP100 Capture Device Amazon Link -> USB
Bad, contributes to problem. You want s-video.

Quote:
1) The extreme wobble at the top of the frames
Timing errors, known as horizontal jitter. You need an internal line TBC in a quality VCR. JVC S-VHS decks often eat VHS-C tapes, aside from a few of the pricier higher SR models, and the Panasonic S-VHS decks are what you'll want for it. Sure, those costs money, but just buy it, use it, resell it.

Quote:
2) The colour which seems to give the impression of a red sunset evening. (Too much red?). Tried playing with the color mil filter, my attempts are shown in the second attached video (Test-filters.mp4). I'm not sure I improved things!
So color error cannot be fixed very well, or at least very easily, after digital conversion. That's what proc amps are for. But a main issue is still timing, which is bleeding chroma into errors. And then the composite is also causing embedded crosstalk. It's all ugly stuff, and will not happen, or severely be reduced, with good equipment for playback.

Quote:
3) General tracking wobble?
I see no tracking issues.

Quote:
So in summary looking to discuss the following:
1) General feedback on the process so far?
2) My research suggests the best thing I can do to improve the quality of the capture is to use a TBC
3) TBC - I've tried searching but they seem to be impossible to get hold of. So I want to ask the community if there are other avenues to explore for getting hold of one and if this is as worth while as I believe it might be.
The internal line TBC is for cleaning the picture, the external framesync TBC is for cleaning the signal. You need both. Note that the internal also does mild signal stabilization, and the external some mild image improvement.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sanlyn View Post
Line-level tbc's are available as external units only in the form of hideously expensive pro shop units.
I don't really know of any -- at least not any truly compatible with consumer formats like VHS. Most high-end units expect clean broadcast tapes, not the chaotic mess that is VHS/Video8/Betamax/etc.

Quote:
aggressive noise reduction circuits disabled to prevent motion smearing and posterizing effects.
Even with those turned off, the NR is not truly 100% off, and the posterization is still present. An ES10/15 is wonderful for what it does, mostly correcting tearing and severe VHS instability that even chokes S-VHS+TBC decks, but it does damage the image some. It should only be used when the net gain is positive, harm/artifacts to signal is still dwarfed by gains. Nor is it true TBC, but what I've come to call TBC(ish).

Quote:
People have used, demonstrated, tested, and discussed pass-thru units for several years in tech forums,
And to my knowledge, I was the first to do so 13+ years ago.

A total accident, and I sometimes wonder if others would have noticed this. I do not recall anybody posting to any site about it beforehand. At the time, I was heavy into gear testing, discussing gear with broadcast engineers that may have been forgotten to time. My claim to fame.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BarryTheCrab View Post
There is a Datavideo tbc-1000 on EBay right now, looks clean but time is short, 3 hours from this posting.
It sold for $725 + shipping.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jd7c5 View Post
1) I'm going to research for a new player with line TBC AND/OR external frame TBC using ebay and the marketplace here
Just FYI, I have a few choice pieces of gear that I've not listed. Still currently in talks with a few buyers that were on my waiting list, but no money has changed hands yet.

You had better be careful with eBay, though it's not quite as bad in Europe as it is the USA. It's really, really bad here, about 90%+ of all stuff is defective in some way, including all the BS "tested" and "working" auctions. (Putting a ratty old retail tape into a VCR, and seeing a picture, any picture, is not testing!)

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  #8  
09-19-2018, 03:56 AM
Eric-Jan Eric-Jan is offline
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Don't know how "far" you want to go in video capturing, but the mentioned Panasonic ES10/15 does have also component video output, (i have a ES35) i'm using a Macbook with a Intensity Shuttle ,(thunderbold2 interface) even better quality then s-video,
plus you can set the component video output to "progressive" so you don't have to de-interlace in post, so it makes that to an quick work flow.
Videoclip
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  #9  
09-19-2018, 06:05 AM
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lordsmurf lordsmurf is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric-Jan View Post
plus you can set the component video output to "progressive" so you don't have to de-interlace in post, so it makes that to an quick work flow.
Videoclip
Deinterlaced requires processing, period. Whether in hardware or software, it happens for progressive output.

Your sample doesn't look necessarily unwatchably bad, but there's a lot of frame blending.
Either:
- the source has it
- or the Panasonic recorder in use relies on blended deinterlacing

Hard to know which it is, since PAL TV wasn't always converted well from NTSC masters.

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  #10  
09-19-2018, 10:35 AM
Eric-Jan Eric-Jan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post


Hard to know which it is, since PAL TV wasn't always converted well from NTSC masters.
which means the interlace artifact maybe copied already during the camcorder to VHS transfer, and cannot be removed after that, so are the camcorder tapes still available ? (original master tapes)
in the case where the de-interlacing is already done in the VCR, it looks fine to me, the clip is a result of that.
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  #11  
09-19-2018, 05:19 PM
Eric-Jan Eric-Jan is offline
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btw. my guess is that it is easier to find a dvr/vcr that will give a rock solid picture image then to find the perfect external TBC to do that job.
The perfect way to start with transfering VHS to a pc, is that you would look for a DVR or VCR which has some form of stabilisation build-in,
these are not the early VHS VCR models, a DVR is allready a better bet, because some form of stabilisation cirquitry was added for an external source, a build-in tv-tuner would already have a clean output.

The tapes you have to transfer are recorded in-camera and not copies ?
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  #12  
09-20-2018, 10:54 AM
jd7c5 jd7c5 is offline
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Originally Posted by Eric-Jan View Post
The tapes you have to transfer are recorded in-camera and not copies ?
Yes original VHS compact tapes
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  #13  
09-20-2018, 10:56 AM
jd7c5 jd7c5 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lordsmurf View Post
Just FYI, I have a few choice pieces of gear that I've not listed. Still currently in talks with a few buyers that were on my waiting list, but no money has changed hands yet.
I would be interested to know what is available. Let me know if anything that might suit becomes available.

Incidently I've found this: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Panasonic...p2056016.l4276

Its a Panasonic NV-HS930B S-VHS VCR. Good option?
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  #14  
09-20-2018, 01:26 PM
Bogilein Bogilein is offline
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If someone is in interested in an SVHS Panasonic FS200 or an SVHS Blaupunkt RTV 950 Recorder. I would sell one. I will receive both recorders back this weekend from a repairing service where they for example replace the capacitors from the power adaptor and a few other things. More details can I give when I have seen the repairing report. I will made some capture tests and if they work well I will put one of the units here on the marketplace. Item location would be Germany.
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