This is Cristian, from Argentina
Long story the shorter I can: I'm 47 years old. Music & Video collector since I was a kid. Music in the first place (audio, official music videos, live performances, retail & promo releases. Also movies & TV series). I've been using alot of different apps to deal with my collection through the years, which included digitizing my whole vhs tapes and laserdiscs collection at the time. I admire literally hundreds of artists, not at all a one or two artists fan. I am not, in no way, a fan of any artist, although I love many of them, mainly because of their vocals skills.
Now... I've got this project on my mind, which started by organizing everything in an excel file which includes over 4000 retail DVDs and BLU-RAYs, over 3000 LPs, over 2000 CDs, not to mention all the "back up" DVD-Rs (and BDRs) which contain mostly everything I have digitized myself, to everything I have gotten through trades or simple downloads (legal or illegally obtained through torrent and direct download links). All in all is way too much to deal with, but I have decided to start organizing and come up with the complete collection of official music videos of each and every artist I admire. Yes, I have that kind of free time. I lost my job back in august last year, and in the meantime I need to have my brain doing this kind of stuff not to go nuts, you know, lol
Anyway, I had to write that intro. Sorry if it was boring
Now to the help I'd like to request here:
I have decided to start with Mariah Carey's official music videos collection. I almost have them all (138 music videos, which includes regular, remixed and alternative versions, all of them official ones). Some come from retail DVDs, some from promo DVDs, promo VHS tapes, promo U-matic tapes, retail and promo Laserdiscs, and the internet sources I mentioned above.
1 - Replace audio if the video's audio quality isn't good, at least to my ears.
2 - If possible, have all of the videos with audio replaced for uncompressed audio taken straight from retail/promo CDs (the only lossy process I should go through is to resample the audio from 44.1 to 48 kHz.)
1 - Search and find any video in HD format that I have in SD format (since we're talking in this case of a career that started almost 30 years ago, most of the videos are in SD quality, 4:3 aspect ratio). This is what I'm doing right now.
2 - Check each video's ratio aspect to see if it is correct.
3 - There are some videos that are in 16:9 format "inside" a 4:3 format video, which leaves me with no choice other than to crop them and reencode them (PLEASE correct me if I'm wrong and there's some way to fix this particular problem avoiding recompression). I'd use TMPGEnc Video Mastering Works, which I'm familiar to BUT I'd be willing to use any other software if recompression is the only way to go and any other method/software would help the video not to decrease its quality in a drastic way.
4 - Get rid of logos, text over videos (most of the ones I have are clean, but many come from promo VHS, DVDs & Laserdiscs, which include logos and text on screen, such as Promo Only, Telegenics, ETV, Videopool, Mixmash, etc). If not possible, well, I'll keep on searching for completely clean versions of these ones (or settle with the ones I have).
5 - Upscaling videos: Is it worth? I mean, having the video SD, what's the use of trying to come up with an HD version of it taking as the source a SD video? I've seen the "upscaled" videos posted everywhere. I've downloaded a couple of them. All I see is a bigger video in size, but NO IMPROVEMENT regarding their quality, so... what do you think about it? Is there any piece of software to really make a difference and improve the DEFINITION and hence approach to HD definition of the video (even knowing than recompression itself would always actually DEGRADE its quality?).
Well... that would be all. Sorry for the long post. I would REALLY appreciate any help/thoughs/advice on this. Cause I'm just starting with MC, but I have alot of artists to go after her.
Last but not least, in any casy I make some mistake with any video, it's OK, cause I always have the original videos recorded somewhere, so that's covered.
Thanks again and regards from Argentina
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Last edited by oopargentina; 18th Apr 2018 at 12:07.
No one answered you, so I will try.
Your time is probably better spent looking for work and spending the rest of the time making backups and basic transfers of your analog content.
There is no way to add back what is missing, no way to improve upon the quality of the source material. In both analog and digital formats, there is only signal or data sufficient to produce images/frames of a certain width & height, e.g. 480 (NTSC) or 576 (PAL) lines vertically. Upscaling is just interpolating from that content to fill up a larger space, i.e. guessing at what should be there. Doing this with VHS, LD, or DVD material in an effort to make it "HD" is a waste of effort, as you discovered. Likewise, you can crop those 16:9-in-4:3 clips (maybe even losslessly) for efficiency, but there is no improving on the fact that it is an extract of an image that is not HD to begin with...it can't be made HD; you are just cutting out the black bars.
Audio replacement is not always easy because there are sync issues. Different CD masterings will play at different speeds. Different video clips play at different speeds. There are techniques for dealing with this. Probably best to ask for advice when you run into it. You can spend all day trying to fix one music video; better to go out and have a little bit of a social life.
Resampling audio from 44.1 to 48 kHz may not be necessary. If you are only making digital files for computer playback, I would not worry about it. Take care to use a good resampler if you do; see http://src.infinitewave.ca/ for visual representations of quality).
Logo/text removal is rarely perfect and might not be worth attempting. How perfect do things really have to be?
Common aspect ratio problems should be fixable without transcoding. Ask if you have a particular example giving you trouble.
Last edited by ItaloFan; 14th Jul 2018 at 12:31.
Nevertheless he's right. Leave them alone, back them up.
Then again.....people who collect and trade music videos think that a VOB file from a music video DVD is magically better quality that the very same video taken from the very same DVD in it's original MPEG2 form(with something like VOB2MPEG, MPEGVCR or similar program).
Seriously....many of them are THAT dumb.
I did a lot of this years ago: removed "bugs" (the logos); replaced audio (I even re-scoped old radio airchecks); improved video quality when possible, and more.
My conclusion? I wasted my time. Unless you are going to watch each of these dozens of times (unlikely, given the size of your collection), there really isn't much point in all of this. I say this from actual experience. Spend your time instead on organizing the collection and on your Excel file.
You might also research how much of this can now be streamed on YouTube and other services. I have almost completely given up trying to collect old videos and musicals because I can get them online, often in better quality than anything I was able to get.
If you have access to Amazon, they have an interesting addition to their video service (i.e., you pay an extra monthly fee). It is called
Click on the link to learn more.
I have a huge collection of laserdiscs which on which I spend thousands; I have 78s and vinyl records that I've been collecting since the 1950s; and I have two disk drives filled to the brim with all manner of music performances and videos. I enjoyed doing this, but current-day reality is that this sort of thing is mostly obsolete because 90% of this is available, instantly and in better quality, via streaming.
Last edited by johnmeyer; 15th Jul 2018 at 12:28. Reason: typo
@Hoser Rob - The notion that audio resampling is inherently simpler and less noisy when the source and target rate are an integer multiple of each other is a myth. I used to assume it was true, too. Don't take my word for it, though; look at the SoX resampling code (which is top-notch), experiment and measure noise yourself, or ask the experts at the Hydrogenaudio forum.
In my experience, the only thing one really needs to watch out for when resampling is aliasing, as shown in some of those graphs at src.infinitewave.ca; this noise is sometimes so bad it becomes audible. It does not depend on the ratio of source & target sample rates, but rather on the interpolation method and related filtering.
https://www.audiocheck.net/ has some proper blind tests and files to do your own experiments with if you need further mythbusting. For example, if you ever hear anything that claims to be over 20 kHz, it is far more likely (if not the only physical possibility) that you are hearing sub-20 kHz interference caused by beating or aliasing, possibly a product of hardware or drivers (e.g. I have old soundcard drivers which in 44.1 mode do some crappy resampling, enticing me to falsely believe that 48 is inherently and audibly better).
Anyway, for video, the only reason to resample from 44.1 to 48 is for player compatibility. It will never improve quality, and can only keep it the same (perceptually) or degrade it. So if you have a file that a player won't handle a non-48 kHz sample rate, then go ahead and convert. I'm not sure that's ever really a concern nowadays, though.
Last edited by ItaloFan; 15th Jul 2018 at 14:26.
I am entirely self-taught and that's why I come to these forums so often: I still have huge holes in my knowledge and the things many people say here can be very educational.
You are also correct about the increasingly creepy revelations about what companies are doing to invade our privacy.
Finally, I have that same suspicion about streaming which I'd put this way: "what streaming giveth, streaming can taketh away." As long as I have physical possession and it is backed up, I should be able to watch and enjoy it for however much time I have left on this mortal coil.
I understand the feeling, a few years ago I did replace the "default" DVD 5.1 sound track of Elvis Aloha from Hawaii with a really hard to find IPS reel to reel quadraphonic recording. It can be done and it's a lot of work, you have to cannibalize the audio to fit the video, sync everything together.
At the end it pay off, sometimes you end up with something very unique.
Does it worth it?
If you have a love and passion for it, yes! A lot!
Does it worth to upscale it?
It depends, if you just want to see it at a big screen is possible, your TV does this already. This process is a hit and miss, some times you can get a decent result out of it, but is very hard to get a good result depending of what you have as a source.
In the end is all a learning curve.
Thank you ALL of you so much for your answers! I certainly to love doing this, however is SO true it would demand so much time I actually don't have. And no, I won't be watching all of this not even once at this point, so it makes no sense to try to improve the quality of the music videos. Yeap I've got alot of videos that are not available online, but that's not the point. In any case, I have them and can watch them any time I want. And if I need to replace the audio in one or two or even 10 videos just to enjoy them a bit more to watch them or share them, that'll be all.
I'll focus on working on my excel file mainly, just to be able to find whatever I want at any given time. That's the most important thing I guess, when having such a huge collection of media stuff.
Thanks again to you all for your time and for sharing your knowledge
Happy to help.
I have a little music video collection, too, some of which still need a little effort just to get them into a digital format and a bare minimum level of enjoyability, be it an aspect ratio or sync fix or volume level adjustment. Those kinds of expenditures of time are worth the effort, even if I don't do it as perfectly as my future self would like.
I've come to accept logos & titles as part of the whole package, part of the presentation of a particular transfer/remastering of a clip. A Mixmash logo goes hand in hand with the heavily remastered look & sound of the clips they released. ETV titles are part and parcel with their basic, classic MTV-inspired look & feel. Of course, I do keep an eye out for cleaner, better copies anyway, but I try not to let minor imperfections ruin my enjoyment of what is otherwise a vital part of my life; good enough has to be good enough, you know?