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  1. Член BJ_M's Avatar
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    Some people were asking about the speed and quality of different mainstream mpeg encoders - so i put together a little test.

    SOURCE = DV 6230 FRAMES , 03:27:20

    FAST PANS/SCANS AND FIRE EFFECT SOURCE MATERIAL OFF A D-BETA TAPE CAPTURED TO DV

    ALL ENCODING WAS DONE AT 8000 MAX , 6000 AVG , 1500 MIN , 9 BIT DC

    ALL SHOTS BELOW ARE FROM FRAME 1006 ...

    NO AUDIO ENCODING WAS DONE!

    ALL WERE ENCODED ON A DUAL XEON 2.4 GHZ WITH 2GIG MEMORY. SOURCE AND TARGET DISCS WERE ULTRA320 SCSI DISKS (DIFFERENT DRIVES FOR SOURCE AND TARGET) , AND NOTHING ELSE WAS RUNNING.

    CCE SP 2.50

    2 PASS VBR (PLUS 1 PASS VAF = 3 PASSES) : 4:49


    CCE SP 2.67

    1 PASS VBR (PLUS 1 PASS VAF = 2 PASSES) : 3:14
    2 PASS VBR (PLUS 1 PASS VAF = 3 PASSES) : 5:01

    notes: set to natural picture easy with 4 dithering and 28 Flat part (other settings were OFF)

    MAIN CONCEPT 1.4

    VERY HIGH QUALITY STANDARD SETTING (WITHOUT FURTHER TWEAKING)
    SEARCH 11
    RANGE 29
    VCSD GOP - ON
    N.S. 3
    2 PASS VBR : 13:23

    HIGH QUALITY STANDARD SETTING
    SEARCH 8
    RANGE 21
    FAST GOP - ON
    N.S. 3
    2 PASS VBR : 7:54

    SEARCH 8
    RANGE 21
    FAST GOP - ON
    N.S. 3
    1 PASS VBR : 4:40



    TMPGENC 2.59

    2 PASS WITH FAST MOTION SEARCH AND OPEN GOP: 6:14


    SONY VEGAS 5.0

    2 PASS , 31 SEARCH RANGE (BEST SETTING) : 8:07



    CANOPUS PROCODER 2

    2 PASS HIGHEST QUALITY SETTING 5:19
    2 PASS MASTERING SETTING 5:27


    CANOPUS PROCODER 1.5

    2 PASS MASTERING MODE 9:12
    NOTE: CREATED A WAV FILE ALSO - SO TIME MAY NOT BE TAKEN AS A DIRECT COMPARISON
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    SAMPLE IMAGES:

    CCE 2.5 2 PASS



    CCE 2.67 1 PASS



    CCE 2.67 2 PASS



    MAIN CONCEPT 2 PASS HIGH QUALITY



    TMPGENC 2 PASS



    SONY VEGAS 5



    PROCODER 2 - HIGHEST QUALITY



    PROCODER 2 - MASTERING QUALITY



    PROCODER 1.5 MASTERING QUALITY


    SAME FRAME FROM SOURCE DV FILE
    "Each problem that I solved became a rule which served afterwards to solve other problems." - Rene Descartes (1596-1650)
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  2. Член BJ_M's Avatar
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    NOTE:

    the above frame sample is a very tough part of the video file to encode.... al the sample shots are taken with virtualdubmod and all were shown as B frames ..

    here is just a few frames of that sequence in a small dv file if you want to run your own tests.

    right click and save as (4.5 meg compressed - rar file):

    http://tinyurl.com/4sdxb
    "Each problem that I solved became a rule which served afterwards to solve other problems." - Rene Descartes (1596-1650)
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  3. Member aanaravs's Avatar
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    Hmm...So apparently MainConcept is the worst?
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  4. Член BJ_M's Avatar
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    mistake post
    "Each problem that I solved became a rule which served afterwards to solve other problems." - Rene Descartes (1596-1650)
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  5. Member Sillyname's Avatar
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    Procoder does not look "exceptional". High quailty 2-pass shows some banding in the top rgiht hand corner. Mastering quality 2-pass is blurrier than all the others! CCE and TMpeg do not show banding in that same are during 2-pass. And yes, Mainconcept is fugly. I've got TMPEG but have practically bent over backwards trying to get it to work. I guess I will be trying some more. I was going to go with the Mainconcept encoder! Eyuck!
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  6. Член BJ_M's Avatar
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    keep in mind that 1 frame does totally indicate the quality of the whole sample .. i also compressed the images to jpeg (but i compared to the png source from v-dub and they look pretty close the same)

    also - these are B frame shots .. the closest I frame to this in all cases was better looking

    if requested - i can post the same I frame of each same seq.
    "Each problem that I solved became a rule which served afterwards to solve other problems." - Rene Descartes (1596-1650)
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  7. Member Sillyname's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by BJ_M
    keep in mind that 1 frame does totally indicate the quality of the whole sample .. i also compressed the images to jpeg (but i compared to the png source from v-dub and they look pretty close the same)

    also - these are B frame shots .. the closest I frame to this in all cases was better looking

    if requested - i can post the same I frame of each same seq.
    I think a better test would be B-Frames, in this case.
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    No big surprise about Mainconcept, i have also noticed during testing that TMPGEnc is much better. The big surprise for me was that procoder could do that bad, i never tried it but from what i read here many forum users say its so good. Also a bit surprising that Tmpgenc could do that much better than CCE, i would have expected those two to be very close, and i think they could have been closer if minimum was set higher. Its just a guess anyway...
    Would be nice if you posted I-frames also, or just tell us how you would rate them.
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  9. Член BJ_M's Avatar
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    P frame samples, frame 1014

    CCE 2.5 2 PASS


    CCE 2.67 1 pass


    CCE 2.67 2 pass


    Vegas 5


    TMPGENC


    Procoder 2 Highest quality


    Procoder 2 Mastering


    PROCODER 1.5 MASTERING


    Main Concept High Quality 2 pass
    "Each problem that I solved became a rule which served afterwards to solve other problems." - Rene Descartes (1596-1650)
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  10. Member Edmund Blackadder's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Sillyname
    Procoder does not look "exceptional".
    Actually, from my experience it looks like ProCoder 2 got quite a bit worse in MPEG2 encoding quality than ProCoder 1.5. From my own tests on DV PAL (720x576 25fps) footage from DCR-VX1000E camcorder (very high quality camera with lifelike and extremely detailed and textured footage output) I've noticed that while ProCoder 2 has very slightly less mosquito noise than ProCoder 1.5, but by minimizing that it looks like they've created a lot more blocky background encodes. It is especially noticeable on lower bitrates. ProCoder 1.5 had a nice preserved texture from DV backgrounds and ProCoder 2 simply makes it all a blur even on 9500kbps bitrates. So basically your MPEG2 footage doesn't look like DV anymore, it looks worse and somehow less alive.

    I've never seen with a naked eye blocks coming out of ProCoder even on the low bitrates, but unfortunately with version 2 it got changed. Therefore I'll be sticking with ProCoder 1.5, which for DV PAL material is truely unbeatable. And remember that the flaws are easier spotted in PAL because it's got better everything than NTSC: better resolution, better colors, better contrast ratio, etc., so all the MPEG2 crap will be seen there for sure, while with NTSC various MPEG2 encoders will seem to have less vatiation in quality. At least to your naked eye.

    So for me the only encoder that gives satisfactory encodes from DV PAL is ProCoder 1.5. I recommend it instead of ProCoder 2 or any other commonly available MPEG2 encoder. I tried CCE SP on several occasions for DV PAL and it looks like crap. While trying to use its filters may help slightly, unfortunately they make the motion look more progressive/film-like which is no good for interlaced look results. TMPGEnc and MainConcept are not much better either - each one has certain shortcomings in image quality. However, I really like TMPGEnc's noise reduction capabilities, so sometimes I use it for AVI->AVI noise reduction (for VHS mostly) before doing the MPEG2 encoding in ProCoder. And on a side note, I love MainConcept DV Codec.

    P.S.: For progressive footage CCE SP is quite good, but for DV I think it's hard to beat ProCoder 1.5.
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    There must be something wrong, either CCE is the only encoder making good P-frames or its not the same frame. Look at the top right, that cant be the same frame.
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  12. Член BJ_M's Avatar
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    cce was 1 frame back compared to the others ...
    "Each problem that I solved became a rule which served afterwards to solve other problems." - Rene Descartes (1596-1650)
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  13. like you said they all look better than the B-frames, but Main Concept still looks the worse to me. I never could get it to work correctly on my system anyway so now I don't feel like I'm missing so much. I'll stick with TMPGEnc Plus 2.5 for a while yet.
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  14. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    MC looks blurry, even compared to TMPGENC. No surprise.

    TMPGEnc looks decent. No surprise. I would have done ESTIMATE instead of FAST (not much slower, and tends to look cleaner with less block artifacts).

    CCE looks like a grainy EP VHS tape. No surprise. It did not inherently clean the video like MPEG does, and it added some noise of its' own. Terrible encoder, don't know what people see in it.

    But this really gets me ... why does HIGHEST seem to look better than MASTERING in Procoder in the first example? Strange. Maybe it's just the footage, or maybe you got them backwards?

    Good tests.
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  15. Член BJ_M's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by lordsmurf
    MC looks blurry, even compared to TMPGENC. No surprise.

    TMPGEnc looks decent. No surprise. I would have done ESTIMATE instead of FAST (not much slower, and tends to look cleaner with less block artifacts).

    CCE looks like a grainy EP VHS tape. No surprise. It did not inherently clean the video like MPEG does, and it added some noise of its' own. Terrible encoder, don't know what people see in it.

    But this really gets me ... why does HIGHEST seem to look better than MASTERING in Procoder in the first example? Strange. Maybe it's just the footage, or maybe you got them backwards?

    Good tests.
    not backwards - but oddly enough mastering mode seems like it was going to fast really -- it ussually is slower .. i should repeat that one..
    "Each problem that I solved became a rule which served afterwards to solve other problems." - Rene Descartes (1596-1650)
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    You oughtta subtract 2 of them and see what happens.
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    Smurf, CCE terrible? Are you trying to say that Procoder won this test? I think CCE looks better than Procoder in this test, the B frames have very obvious differences and the P frames are close but cant say for sure since its not the same frame. I agree that CCE got more noise, but in my opinion, with the bigger difference in B frames quality, Procoder comes out below CCE in this test. So if you can say CCE is terrible, what would you say about procoder? Cant be a word you teach to kids
    Maybe i will test a bit myself later this weekend, for me it looks like CCE has considered frame 1006 to be a place to save bitrate, while tmpgenc has used "too high" bitrate. Since some people say tmpgenc seems to be afraid of going too low when doing VBR i find reason to believe that the tmpgenc sample is closer to a CBR encode. However i do not question tmpgencs quality at high bitrates, it is possible the best in that area, so it probably is as good as this test shows.
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  18. Член BJ_M's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by FOO
    You oughtta subtract 2 of them and see what happens.
    you can do that also on the above images -- i just did on a few just now, no real surprises
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  19. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    thor, absolutely Procoder won this one. Just look at the noise in the CCE vs the Procoder. I want clean video.

    I acknowledge that the DV source was noisy, and that CCE may have been the truest conversion of them all, but it translated the noise AND added some of its own. That's not acceptable.

    In this example, I think TMPGEnc did even better than CCE.
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  20. Член BJ_M's Avatar
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    funny how vegas has more detail than the main concept stand alone (since they both use the main concept encoder).... sony has tweaked it they say ... vegas was the only one that picked out the small double line in the middle right lower third in frame 1006
    -- it may have some other problems , but that caught my eye
    "Each problem that I solved became a rule which served afterwards to solve other problems." - Rene Descartes (1596-1650)
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  21. Hi all. TGIF :P

    ..Bout time someone finally did a head-to-head MPEG test.

    I think it would have ben better if WE all could have part taken
    in the encoding too.
    It would be nice if there were such a test scenario to partake
    in w/ our DV cams on our own, but that would probably be too
    difficult to accomplish - sigh. Anyways.

    In my OP, I thought that TMPG proved itself very well there.

    My thought on Interlace and CCE..

    I'm not too sure that there is really any serious issues w/ CCE
    encoding Interlaced source. Maybe its just a matter of properly
    orienting the source's video Aspect Ratios ??
    I'll have to test this out. Perhaps over this weekend. I have
    CCE v2.50 I think. Every time I think I don't need it, I end up
    digging it out again for some domb testing :P ..I guess that's
    why this Hobby is soo much fun Anyways.
    .
    I think that for Interlaced (ie, DV) CBR would be best. I think
    that at least for when the source was has ben shot by Hand, vs. by
    a Tripod. If footage was doe w/ a Tripod (fluid would be best) then
    there is no limit to what Encoding Mode one chooses in their encoding.

    I still wish there was some sort of "template" that everyone w/ a DV
    cam can use to shoot footage at and then test encoding scenarios against.
    That would be most interesting. Any ideas anyone ?? Anyways.

    @ BJ_M

    Thanks for your interesting thread.

    Question. How does one obtain the B frames pic's ??

    Cheers,
    -vhelp 2619
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    Ok, but i think CCE kept more detail, so it was number 2 for my eyes. Tmpgenc got the first place. In some areas i see less noise with Procoder, but i also see more blocks. Makes sense after reading Edmund Blackadders post. Maybe Procoder 1.5 and CCE 2.50 should have been included in this test. Anyways, big thanx to BJ_M.
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  23. Член BJ_M's Avatar
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    ADDED procoder 1.5 and CCE 2.5 above
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  24. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    I see blocks in PC 2.0 but not in PC 1.5
    Are you sure the upgrade was really better?

    Same for CCE. I think 2.5 is doing better than 2.67.

    Odd.
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  25. Член BJ_M's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by lordsmurf
    I see blocks in PC 2.0 but not in PC 1.5
    Are you sure the upgrade was really better?

    Same for CCE. I think 2.5 is doing better than 2.67.

    Odd.

    CCE 2.5 looks better (same settings were used) and was faster - on this source ..

    PC 1.5 was slower and looks better - i agree , on this source ...

    PC2 has better scene detection, filters, settings, and a host of other features ...

    i re-ran the mastering PC2 test again with stock settings and CBR 7500 and it looks better than 2 pass VBR , but not fair test as it is a higher avg bit rate ..



    this is a brutal sample i used for testing - it was not used to "look pretty" but to cause a problem .. you can download a small sample of it above and try to encode it any way you want ..

    some filters will help - but lose detail .. that fire/explosion is over in 1 second apx.

    i didnt use any real super tweaks or any filters -- tmpgenc, MC , vegas, PC and to a degree , cce - all have them ...
    "Each problem that I solved became a rule which served afterwards to solve other problems." - Rene Descartes (1596-1650)
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  26. Член BJ_M's Avatar
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    vhelp
    in answer to your question about the B frames..


    VirtualdubMOD shows you if a frame is a I, P or B frame along the bottom
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  27. The Old One SatStorm's Avatar
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    PC looks suprisesly bad and TMPGenc suprisesly good to excellent!
    CCE looks as it is expected (I read everywhere that 2.5 is better later version, but I don't test that myself) and MC blured as expected (terrible, bad, awfull!).

    Nice work BJ_M! Thanks!

    Just for the info, I'm still using TMPGenc plus for encoding offline my projects and I use MC only for realtime mpeg 2 captures from TV / non important VHS tapes. And after this test, I'll keep doing that!
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  28. Member SaSi's Avatar
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    Good work BJ_M!

    The MC B-frame sample shows the major problem with MC. Even with two pass VBR, MC will rarely pump-up the bitrate on demanding scenes causing bitrate starvation effects in high motion frames. The blocky appearance indicates too much pixel truncation during encoding of the frame.

    I believe Tmpgenc has a similar problem with low motion scenes. Contrary to MC that doesn't deviate much from the average bitrate, Tmpgenc is able to do so, and is aggresive in low content dark scenes, causing the image to become flat black in large areas. This is clearly visible in high contrast capable displays (flat panels mainly).

    CCE has a mind of it's own. It has a BIAS parameter that apparently controls the bitrate fluctuation but in low bitrates it tends to soften the picture.

    It appears that MPEG encoding implementations have a long way to go before they can produce excellent results.

    BTW, a good tool to evaluate the encoding is to use DVD-LAB's bitrate viewer on the MPEG files. It clearly shows how bitrate is distributed along the time axis and how aggressive the encoder is to use bitrate when it is needed.
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  29. Member maek's Avatar
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    It appears that Vegas 5 does not do too shabby a job either, although I noticed some softening between areas where the fire and image backgroung intermingle. Anyone else care to comment on Vegas 5 vs. TMPGENC Plus? I imagine TMPGENC is probably superior, but how does Vegas 5 fare in general?
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  30. Member Sillyname's Avatar
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    Might I suggest a new test?

    Try filming a strobe light at it's fastest setting. The adjacent frames that do not contain a flash should whig-out when the mpeg encoder tries to compare with a frame containing the flash. I found the Mainconcept encoder to be virtually worthless when compressing this sort of scene. TMPEG rips right through it, though! Still wouldn't mind seeing some B-frame comparisons...

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