So here's the deal, I recently decided to take on the project of transferring a bunch of old family VHS tapes over to DVD. I purchased the Canopus ADVC-110 based on it's great reviews and so far I'm very satisfied with it. I've captured one VHS tape so far (approximately 90 minutes of footage) and the file is around 18GB and in AVI format. The quality of the footage is absolutely fantastic, it looks just like watching the VHS tape on a TV.
Here's where I'm having a problem (I'm very new to video editing so bear with me). My original intent was to burn these movies onto dual layer DVDs. Now, I'm well aware that 18GB isn't going to fit on an 8.5GB disc so something has to be done to compress the file size. Also, if I'm reading things correctly, an AVI can't be read by a DVD player so the file would need to be converted to something such as an MPEG2.
At the moment, I'm mainly working with a trial version of Sony Vegas Movie Studio HD 11.0 and VLC Media Player. I've tried taking the 18GB AVI file and converting it to an MPEG2 using both programs but the quality is terrible. The clarity of the picture isn't too bad but the actual playback seems "slow" and there are jittery/choppy frames throughout.
Thinking this is something that was caused by compressing the file size, I tried converting the original AVI to an (H.264 + MP3) MP4 file with VLC Media Player and I tried the option of rendering as "MainConcept MPEG-2 => Blu-ray 1920x1080-60i, 25 Mbps video stream" in Sony Vegas. I realize that both of these would be larger files than I could burn to DVD but if the quality was the same as the original AVI, I'd consider buying a Blu-ray burner. Well, both of these files also suffered from quality loss, particularly the "slow" playback and choppy frames. Why would that be?
My questions for you experts out there is am I setting my standards too high by expecting the same quality out of an MPEG2 as I get on my 18GB AVI file? Any idea as to why there is such a quality loss when converting the AVI to a different file format? Is this normal? I would have no problem even buying a Blu-ray burner if I could replicate the quality of the original AVI on a Blu-ray disc. Is there a codec I can use that would be completely lossless from the original AVI and that could convert it to something burnable on a Blu-ray?
Thank you in advance for any help, it's very much appreciated!
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If it's 18Gb then it's a bit less than an hour and a half long, right? If you're intending to burn it to a dual-layer DVD (which the max bitrate allowed by DVD will keep you from filling), you should be able to get a decent result. It's interlaced, I assume. Have you tried playing the DVD on your television? There's a chance you're being thrown off by the interlacing. How large are the DVDs you're getting (in GB)? Anyway, try a decent conversion program. I'd suggest trying AvsToDVD.
You'll never get the same quality as the source, but you should be able to get close-to-same quality.
Is there a codec I can use that would be completely lossless from the original AVI and that could convert it to something burnable on a Blu-ray?
i'd guess you captured to DVavi. but to check please install the free mediainfo program and use it on the avi. put mediainfo in text mode and copy paste the results here.
DVavi normally converts very nicely to dvd spec mpeg-2 and dvd.--
"a lot of people are better dead" - prisoner KSC2-303
Thank you both for the replies. Here are the results of my original AVI from the MediaInfo program:
Complete name : C:\Users\Kevin\Documents\(Unknown) - Clip 003.avi
Format : AVI
Format/Info : Audio Video Interleave
Commercial name : DV
Format profile : OpenDML
File size : 18.4 GiB
Duration : 1h 26mn
Overall bit rate mode : Constant
Overall bit rate : 30.4 Mbps
TAPE : (Unknown)
TCOD : 2335667
TCDO : 52127742333
VMAJ : 4
VMIN : 0
STAT : 156220 0 3.356065 1
DTIM : 0 0
ID : 0
Format : DV
Codec ID : dvsd
Codec ID/Hint : Sony
Duration : 1h 26mn
Bit rate mode : Constant
Bit rate : 24.4 Mbps
Encoded bit rate : 28.8 Mbps
Width : 720 pixels
Height : 480 pixels
Display aspect ratio : 4:3
Frame rate mode : Constant
Frame rate : 29.970 fps
Standard : NTSC
Color space : YUV
Chroma subsampling : 4:1:1
Bit depth : 8 bits
Scan type : Interlaced
Scan order : Bottom Field First
Compression mode : Lossy
Bits/(Pixel*Frame) : 2.357
Time code of first frame : 00:00:00;07
Time code source : Subcode time code
Stream size : 17.5 GiB (95%)
ID : 1
Format : PCM
Format settings, Endianness : Little
Format settings, Sign : Signed
Codec ID : 1
Duration : 1h 26mn
Bit rate mode : Constant
Bit rate : 1 536 Kbps
Channel(s) : 2 channels
Sampling rate : 48.0 KHz
Bit depth : 16 bits
Stream size : 954 MiB (5%)
Alignment : Aligned on interleaves
Interleave, duration : 267 ms (8.00 video frames)
Interleave, preload duration : 266 ms
I downloaded AVStoDVD and tried creating an ISO of my AVI file. I have not actually burned any of these files I've converted to a DVD yet, I've just been viewing the results on my computer through either VLC Media Player or Windows Media Player to see if they're even worth burning to a disc. I viewed the ISO file in VLC and yet again it seems slow and has jerky/choppy parts throughout the video.
Regarding the file sizes, the ISO I just created is 7.64GB. The MPEG-2 I created in Sony Vegas is 3.85GB and the MPEG-2 I created in VLC is 6.23GB. I've basically used default settings on all of these programs.
The output should not be jerky and choppy. The interlacing should be retained as well as the frame rate
(You did set your AVStoDVD project to NTSC I hope). Perhaps post a sample of the VOB.
Use DGindex, use the [ and ] buttons to cut out a section.
File/save project and demux video. Post the m2v.
Youi'll find DGindex in one of the AVStoDVD sub folders.
EDIT another thing that might be useful is the AVStoDVD log from that run.
Last edited by davexnet; 15th Jan 2014 at 18:12.
Did you view the entire original capture ?
Have to agree with the previous comments that, as long as your DV capture is fine, your final mpg2 or dvd-iso should be fine.
Converting to h264 within Vegas should not cause problems(there are better tools for this) but you do not want to do that if your destination is dvd. Vegas will make dvd-compliant mpeg2 and good quality but I would not attempt upscaling that to HD ie 1920*1080.
I think I've got my problem figured out. It seems that the choppy/jerky playback is exclusive to the VLC Media Player. I hadn't burned anything to a DVD yet thinking that the files on my computer were poor quality. Fortunately, I realized that my original AVI file (which plays flawlessly in Windows Media Player) was giving me the same jerky/choppy playback when viewed in VLC.
After realizing this, I went ahead and burned the ISO that I created in AVStoDVD to a dual layer DVD. After watching the DVD on my PC and Blu-ray player, I can say that the quality is fine. I'm sure there is some loss from the original AVI but it's MUCH better than the garbage quality I had been seeing in VLC.
What can I say, newbie mistake
Thanks for the help!