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  1. Hi everybody. I'm about to start digitizing our family's tape collection. The earliest tape is from approximately 1983. I plan to use a Panasonic NV-HS1000 and a USB capture device.

    I'd like to ask for your help, but am not sure how to do so; what information to include, how to encode the samples, where to upload and similar. I have some basic knowledge of Virtualdub and Avisynth meaning that I know how to perform any action seen elsewhere (e.g. copy a script, download and set up any missing plugins for Avisynth or anything similar). I've seen great results on a topic about the wedding tape so I'm hopeful that you would be willing to help me as well.

    I already have one of the tapes captured with a simpler VHS deck, and saved with Lagarith. I will be getting the Panasonic deck over this weekend, so I can provide samples with that device the other week.

    Thank you very much!
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  2. Mod Neophyte Super Moderator redwudz's Avatar
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    ipavlic, in the future please use a more descriptive subject title in your posts to allow others to search for similar topics. I will change yours this time. From our rules:
    Try to choose a subject that describes your topic.
    Please do not use topic subjects like Help me!!! or Problems.
    Thanks,

    Moderator redwudz

    And welcome to our forums.

    EDIT: Basic information: What are your computer's capabilities/ specifications? Describe your present capture setup. Describe your present work flow. Which USB capture device? Are the tapes in good condition? Are you in NTSC or PAL format? Probably a lot more. Stand by.
    Last edited by redwudz; 20th Feb 2014 at 20:26.
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  3. You can upload samples to this web site. See the "Upload files/Manage attachments" button below the quick reply box near the bottom of each thread. I think the current limit is 500 MB per file.
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    Last edited by sanlyn; 19th Mar 2014 at 06:20.
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  5. Originally Posted by redwudz View Post
    ipavlic, in the future please use a more descriptive subject title in your posts to allow others to search for similar topics. I will change yours this time. From our rules:
    Try to choose a subject that describes your topic.
    Please do not use topic subjects like Help me!!! or Problems.
    Thanks,
    Hi! Thank you for helping out. I thought that I was descriptive - I wanted to find out what is the proper way to ask for help and then open a new topic with the actual help request. But I guess the first step can be skipped.

    Originally Posted by redwudz View Post
    EDIT: Basic information: What are your computer's capabilities/ specifications? Describe your present capture setup. Describe your present work flow. Which USB capture device? Are the tapes in good condition? Are you in NTSC or PAL format? Probably a lot more. Stand by.
    I have a
    • Macbook with 64-bit Windows7 on a Bootcamp partition. The processor should be i7-2620M, 8GB of ram. Additional external USB 3.0 WD drive to help store the captured files.
    • USB grabber is a basic type, I believe it is called just "SilverCrest USB 2.0 Video Grabber". By the manufacture date, it should be using a Conexant CX23103-11Z chipset (earlier versions used a em2863 USB 2.0 Video device from EETI (former eMPIA Technology, Inc))
    • I don't know how to judge the condition of the tapes. They have not be played often and they seem to be in good condition. Given that they are old, that may not be true though.
    • PAL format is used.

    Thank you!
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  6. Originally Posted by sanlyn View Post
    To clarify Baldrick's and jagabo's suggestions: details about how you captured will allow readers to give more specific tips. Also, a short 10 seconds or so of an unprocessed sample of your capture is worth a thousand questions and guesses, especially scenes that have people moving or the camera in motion. If you captured to AVI, you can cut a short sample in VirtualDub and save the clip using "direct stream copy" (see VDub's "Video" top menu item). "Direct stream copy" will avoid colorsapace changes and other alterations.
    I captured by:
    1. pressing play on the video
    2. waiting for it to autotrack
    3. rewinding
    4. connecting the USB grabber to the video
    5. going to Virtualdub and choosing Lagarith as an output codec with no additional configuration
    6. choosing save as AVI

    I'll be uploading the samples as soon as possible. They are huge.
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  7. Originally Posted by jagabo View Post
    You can upload samples to this web site. See the "Upload files/Manage attachments" button below the quick reply box near the bottom of each thread. I think the current limit is 500 MB per file.
    I tried uploading but since the files are around 500 MB and it takes a long to upload them, the transfer broke after some time. I'm planning to upload them to a Skydrive/Onedrive and share a link as soon as possible today.
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  8. Originally Posted by ipavlic View Post
    the files are around 500 MB
    You usually only need five of ten seconds to show particular problems. That's typically less than 100 MB with Lagarith compression.
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    Last edited by sanlyn; 19th Mar 2014 at 06:20.
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  10. Originally Posted by jagabo View Post
    Originally Posted by ipavlic View Post
    the files are around 500 MB
    You usually only need five of ten seconds to show particular problems. That's typically less than 100 MB with Lagarith compression.
    I must have included more than 10 seconds. I'll check as soon as I get home this evening, isolate the most illustrative parts and upload the videos.
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    Last edited by sanlyn; 19th Mar 2014 at 06:20.
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  12. Those are some pretty sick looking caps. Hopefully the HS1000 will clean up the time base. And using an s-video cable instead of composite should remove all that herringbone noise in the colored areas. Your caps also have a lot of blown out brights. Be sure to adjust the capture devices proc amp to bring those down to normal levels. There are a lot of auto-gain problems too. If they are on the tape (at least some of them probably are) there's not much you can do while capturing. But be sure the capture device isn't exacerbating them -- turn off any auto brightness, contrast, etc. settings in the device.

    Until you have some better caps there's not much point in discussing filtering.
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    Last edited by sanlyn; 19th Mar 2014 at 06:21.
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  14. Originally Posted by jagabo View Post
    Those are some pretty sick looking caps. Hopefully the HS1000 will clean up the time base. And using an s-video cable instead of composite should remove all that herringbone noise in the colored areas. Your caps also have a lot of blown out brights. Be sure to adjust the capture devices proc amp to bring those down to normal levels. There are a lot of auto-gain problems too. If they are on the tape (at least some of them probably are) there's not much you can do while capturing. But be sure the capture device isn't exacerbating them -- turn off any auto brightness, contrast, etc. settings in the device.

    Until you have some better caps there's not much point in discussing filtering.
    All right, I'll try to buy the HS1000 then. I missed it over this weekend, so perhaps during the week. Are there any recommendations for a cheap but good capture device that works on Windows 7?
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  15. Originally Posted by sanlyn View Post
    if by "artifacts" you refer to rips, streaks, spots, comets, mangled and hopping frames, etc., those are not digitally created. They either exist in the original tapes or they result from poor tracking and tape damage. Herringbone, chroma upsampling errors, and dot crawl can be avoided using s-video rather than composite from the VCR. And I feel that you might be able to find a better, not much more expensive, capture device.
    Yes, this is what I meant with "artifacts". I hoped that also might be resolved by a video deck with TBC.

    Originally Posted by sanlyn View Post
    And I feel that you might be able to find a better, not much more expensive, capture device.
    Are there any recommendations for that? It should be an USB device since I can't be opening my laptop to insert a card.

    Originally Posted by sanlyn View Post
    The image below demonstrates real "artifacts" -- herringbone, dot crawl, and ragged, sawtooth edges. The image is from Sample 3 and has been blown up 2X, although you really don't have to magnify the image to see these problems. It's possible to smooth this disturbance with processing, but the filters required to fix noise of this kind will seriously degrade the image.
    In short, I should first purchase a better VCR.

    Originally Posted by sanlyn View Post
    The image below is a before/after of frame 71 in Sample 4. This has been captured at black levels that are too high. If the shots were overexposed in the camera, you can partially compensate by adjusting input brightness and contrast levels during capture.
    That seems likely. I believe that the camera in question was a Panasonic machine, but I can't seem to find it. There was also a recorder device worn in a shoulder bag. I found the original manuals for that one - it's was an ORION VP-10. There was also a "video tuner timer", ORION VTT-10A, but I don't believe it was used for recording. It seems that it is TV tuner to receive TV signal and has a programmable timer to initiate recording.

    Originally Posted by sanlyn View Post
    The color here was fixed in software, using the original YUY2 colorspace to first restore reasonable black levels and reduce green, then mild tweaking with RGB color filters. Note that the color fix for this scene won't work with the scene that follows it, which has different levels and color balance altogether.
    I experimented a bit with autolevels plugin for avisynth. The results were not bad. Should I instead fix each scene manually?

    Originally Posted by sanlyn View Post
    Take another look at your Sample 4 .avi and notice the right-hand border. Near the top of the frame, the right hand border leans to the left. A tbc can probably fix that.
    All right, I'll try to buy the HS-1000 and get back to you. Thank you!
    Last edited by ipavlic; 23rd Feb 2014 at 05:32. Reason: added a question about the capture device
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    Last edited by sanlyn; 19th Mar 2014 at 06:21.
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