This is something I have been trying for a long time, with mixed results.
I know you can't really make an SD image into HD, but there are several ways of faking it that seem to provide very good results, particularly if the original DV SD image is 16:9 and has a high bitrate.
Until now I have tried or read about software ways to do this, and the results do not look that good.
But yesterday, by accident I had proof of how hardware, even simple media boxes that do upgrading, may be worth trying.
I played a 584kbps bitrate SD video directly from my laptop HDMI output and then through the WD TV media player, set to 1080p output, and the quality difference was staggering! The direct image was filled with artifacts, very low quality; the WD image looked very decent, artifacts free, reasonably detailed.
Recently I had been viewing this same show second season in SD but higher bitrate files, and the results were very close to HD, which I had experienced on the first season which was 1080p.
To prove this difference I can shoot photos of the video screen, if necessary.
The question is this left me thinking: why not get an HDMI capture board or box, and pass my higher quality SD image through this box and see what happens.
Recommendations on HDMI capture card/boxes are welcome, as well as comments you might have on such upgradings.
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Hardware players like the WDTV series use something like a bicubic resize filter. You can do better in software with AviSynth filters like nnedi3. Keep in mind that your DV camcorder video is most likely interlaced which is more problematic. You'll want to deinterlace it with a high quality deinterlacer like QTGMC before upscaling. And your WDTV can't play DV.
I haven't tried it, but I think the WD or other media players (I use a Mede8er at home) do play avi files. If not I am not sure if I can put into a different carrier, like mkv.
What I do not know is how or what to use to upgrade to HD with Avisynth. Do I convert them to H264?
There will be a lot of deinterlacing, as the HDV is also interlaced.
I never tried that with the files from my DV camera. But I captured the files first as avi and then imported to Avid.
This way I could process the avi files better outside Avid instead of exporting them.
I think the last time (2010) I used ffdshow for the SD to DNxHD conversion. It worked quite well. I think it deinterlaced as the first part of the process.
I thought there might be other plugins nowadays, the work better than Magic Bullet or similar commercial programs.
You're right. But I never tried to play that through the WD. It runs fine on the PC programs, of course
I can't try that now, because I am on a location, but I will when I return home.
I have more then 40 MiniDV PAL kasettes and I decided to digitilize them.
80% of them was done already with terrible quality on street shop. They probably played tape on a computer and converted to DVD by a cheap capture card. Now I have to do it again myself.
I am now capturing miniDV to Windows10 computer with WinDV and tried to use Microsoft photos to convert them. There is only 3 option to convert videos in MS photos. smal-medium-big.
I chose "big" and one my one hour video is converted to MP4 and size is a over 5GB. That is ok for me.
But when I look at video information on new file resolution is 1920x1080 30fps.. It is upscaled and it is not under my control.
On the other hand when I compare both video I can not distiguish the quality.
Can I go on that way or should I buy another converter program? Would there be a risk to convert with this way?
But simple Microsoft photos tool have converted it MP4 with 1080p 30fps. (5-6gb more acceptable for archiving). I have no control on settings. And I could not distinguish quality between DV tape and MP4.
I did not find anything on internet about converting MiniDVs to MP4 with Photos windows 10 app.
First I wanted to share this experience here in this old topic because header is "upgrading mini-DV SD to HD 1080p"
And additionally I hoped any experienced person may warn me if I am doing something wrong..