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  1. Member
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    I've been using 4K Video Downloader to download videos from YouTube, but there's a noticeable drop in quality compared to the original upload, like increased pixelation, slight colour loss and not as sharp, more blurry, general degradation of detail. Is there a better piece of software or website that lets you download in it's original quality (or close to?)

    Or would i get better results using screen capture software?
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  2. Originally Posted by Master Tape View Post
    I've been using 4K Video Downloader to download videos from YouTube, but there's a noticeable drop in quality compared to the original upload, like increased pixelation, slight colour loss and not as sharp, more blurry, general degradation of detail. Is there a better piece of software or website that lets you download in it's original quality (or close to?)

    Or would i get better results using screen capture software?
    Youtube-dl, learn how to use it from the CLI. It seems like the software you referenced should also be doing the same thing, I think you may have it set up to re-encode or it's not downloading the highest quality version, check the settings.
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    MPC-HC has youtube-dl integrated as well. But you may not have full control over the preferred format.

    YouTube/Google will always recompress videos after they have been uploaded, even if you upload a well supported original resolution. The unaltered upload may not be available to the whole audience (maybe only to the uploader, if it is kept at all).
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  4. Originally Posted by LigH.de View Post
    YouTube/Google will always recompress videos after they have been uploaded, even if you upload a well supported original resolution. The unaltered upload may not be available to the whole audience (maybe only to the uploader, if it is kept at all).
    It's like you say. Supposedly you can download your own original uploads via google takeout. I have not tested this.
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  5. Originally Posted by Master Tape View Post
    I've been using 4K Video Downloader to download videos from YouTube, but there's a noticeable drop in quality compared to the original upload...
    If you're saying the download suffers in comparison to your original upload, that's because YouTube reencodes everything at relatively low bitrates.

    If you download at the highest available resolution you're getting the best possible quality that YouTube has to offer.
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  6. Funnily enough, for a video provided with a low bitrate to begin with, due to its highly compressible nature, YouTube can re-encode at a higher bitrate.
    I just tested with this one of mine (I apologize in advance for the goofy nature of the topic... it is based on a french meme which emanated from this) :
    https://youtu.be/R0IGeGFkuks
    The uploaded video, in 1280x720 resolution, encoded with ffmpeg using libx264 and parameters -crf 20 -preset veryslow from a lossless export from the NLE, has a size of 12.6MB (exactly 13278637 bytes), with a video bitrate of 115kbps and an audio bitrate of 185kbps. The video is mostly made of still pictures, which explains the low bitrate requirement.
    The video downloaded in the same resolution from YouTube with youtube-dl and the command :
    Code:
    youtube-dl -f 22 https://youtu.be/R0IGeGFkuks -o "YT - %(title)s [%(id)s -f 22].mp4"
    has a size of 21.3MB (22413234 bytes), a video bitrate of 388kbps, an audio bitrate of 128kbps.
    With the format code “136+140” instead of “22” (which requests the download of video-only stream “136” plus audio stream “140” which are then muxed with ffmpeg) the size and global bitrate are slightly higher : 21.5MB / 22598709B, 524kbps instead of 520kbps, although the individual streams' bitrates are the same, I don't know how to explain this. The video stream (extracted with mplayer -dumpvideo -dumpfile) is exactly the same for each file (same size and MD5), while the audio stream (extracted with mplayer -dumpaudio -dumpfile) is slightly larger for the “136+140” file (5520776B instead of 5520033). The “22” file has its index at the begining, the “136+140” one at the end.

    Original :
    Code:
    Général
    Nom complet                              : H:\conversions et montages (était sur SSD part TEMP)\Google Translate - Coucou tu veux voir ma bite.mp4
    Format                                   : MPEG-4
    Profil du format                         : Base Media
    Identifiant du codec                     : isom (isom/iso2/avc1/mp41)
    Taille du fichier                        : 12,7 Mio
    Durée                                    : 5 min 45s
    Débit global moyen                       : 308 kb/s
    Application utilisée                     : Lavf58.19.102
    
    Vidéo
    ID                                       : 1
    Format                                   : AVC
    Format/Info                              : Advanced Video Codec
    Profil du format                         : High 4:4:4 Predictive@L5
    Paramètres du format                     : CABAC / 16 Ref Frames
    Paramètres du format, CABAC              : Oui
    Paramètres du format, RefFrames          : 16 images
    Identifiant du codec                     : avc1
    Identifiant du codec/Info                : Advanced Video Coding
    Durée                                    : 5 min 45s
    Débit                                    : 115 kb/s
    Largeur                                  : 1 280 pixels
    Hauteur                                  : 720 pixels
    Format à l'écran                         : 16/9
    Type d'images/s                          : Constant
    Images par seconde                       : 30,000 Im/s
    Sous-échantillonnage de la chrominance   : 4:4:4
    Profondeur des couleurs                  : 8 bits
    Type de balayage                         : Progressif
    Bits/(Pixel*Image)                       : 0.004
    Taille du flux                           : 4,74 Mio (37%)
    Bibliothèque utilisée                    : x264 core 157 r2935 545de2f
    Paramètres d'encodage                    : cabac=1 / ref=16 / deblock=1:0:0 / analyse=0x1:0x131 / me=umh / subme=10 / psy=1 / psy_rd=1.00:0.00 / mixed_ref=1 / me_range=24 / chroma_me=1 / trellis=2 / 8x8dct=0 / cqm=0 / deadzone=21,11 / fast_pskip=1 / chroma_qp_offset=4 / threads=12 / lookahead_threads=2 / sliced_threads=0 / nr=0 / decimate=1 / interlaced=0 / bluray_compat=0 / constrained_intra=0 / bframes=8 / b_pyramid=2 / b_adapt=2 / b_bias=0 / direct=3 / weightb=1 / open_gop=0 / weightp=2 / keyint=250 / keyint_min=25 / scenecut=40 / intra_refresh=0 / rc_lookahead=60 / rc=crf / mbtree=1 / crf=20.0 / qcomp=0.60 / qpmin=0 / qpmax=69 / qpstep=4 / ip_ratio=1.40 / aq=1:1.00
    Codec configuration box                  : avcC
    
    Audio
    ID                                       : 2
    Format                                   : AAC LC
    Format/Info                              : Advanced Audio Codec Low Complexity
    Identifiant du codec                     : mp4a-40-2
    Durée                                    : 5 min 45s
    Type de débit                            : Constant
    Débit                                    : 185 kb/s
    Canaux                                   : 2 canaux
    Channel layout                           : L R
    Echantillonnage                          : 48,0 kHz
    Images par seconde                       : 46,875 Im/s (1024 SPF)
    Mode de compression                      : Avec perte
    Taille du flux                           : 7,59 Mio (60%)
    Default                                  : Oui
    AlternateGroup/String                    : 1
    Downloaded (-f 22) :
    Code:
    Général
    Nom complet                              : H:\YT - Coucou tu veux voir ma bite  – Version internationale [R0IGeGFkuks 22].mp4
    Format                                   : MPEG-4
    Profil du format                         : Base Media / Version 2
    Identifiant du codec                     : mp42 (isom/mp42)
    Taille du fichier                        : 21,4 Mio
    Durée                                    : 5 min 45s
    Type de débit global                     : Variable
    Débit global moyen                       : 520 kb/s
    Date d'encodage                          : UTC 2019-03-20 06:58:55
    Date de marquage                         : UTC 2019-03-20 06:58:55
    gsst                                     : 0
    gstd                                     : 345048
    
    Vidéo
    ID                                       : 1
    Format                                   : AVC
    Format/Info                              : Advanced Video Codec
    Profil du format                         : Main@L3.1
    Paramètres du format                     : CABAC / 3 Ref Frames
    Paramètres du format, CABAC              : Oui
    Paramètres du format, RefFrames          : 3 images
    Identifiant du codec                     : avc1
    Identifiant du codec/Info                : Advanced Video Coding
    Durée                                    : 5 min 45s
    Débit                                    : 388 kb/s
    Largeur                                  : 1 280 pixels
    Hauteur                                  : 720 pixels
    Format à l'écran                         : 16/9
    Type d'images/s                          : Constant
    Images par seconde                       : 30,000 Im/s
    Espace de couleurs                       : YUV
    Sous-échantillonnage de la chrominance   : 4:2:0
    Profondeur des couleurs                  : 8 bits
    Type de balayage                         : Progressif
    Bits/(Pixel*Image)                       : 0.014
    Taille du flux                           : 16,0 Mio (75%)
    Titre                                    : ISO Media file produced by Google Inc. Created on: 03/19/2019.
    Date d'encodage                          : UTC 2019-03-20 06:58:55
    Date de marquage                         : UTC 2019-03-20 06:58:55
    Gamme de couleurs                        : Limited
    Coordonnées de chromaticité              : BT.709
    Caractéristiques du transfert            : BT.709
    Coefficients de la matrice               : BT.709
    Codec configuration box                  : avcC
    
    Audio
    ID                                       : 2
    Format                                   : AAC LC
    Format/Info                              : Advanced Audio Codec Low Complexity
    Identifiant du codec                     : mp4a-40-2
    Durée                                    : 5 min 45s
    Type de débit                            : Variable
    Débit                                    : 128 kb/s
    Canaux                                   : 2 canaux
    Channel layout                           : L R
    Echantillonnage                          : 44,1 kHz
    Images par seconde                       : 43,066 Im/s (1024 SPF)
    Mode de compression                      : Avec perte
    Taille du flux                           : 5,26 Mio (25%)
    Titre                                    : ISO Media file produced by Google Inc. Created on: 03/19/2019.
    Date d'encodage                          : UTC 2019-03-20 06:58:55
    Date de marquage                         : UTC 2019-03-20 06:58:55
    Downloaded (-f 136+140) :
    Code:
    Général
    Nom complet                              : H:\YT - Coucou tu veux voir ma bite  – Version internationale [R0IGeGFkuks 136+140].mp4
    Format                                   : MPEG-4
    Profil du format                         : Base Media
    Identifiant du codec                     : isom (isom/iso2/avc1/mp41)
    Taille du fichier                        : 21,6 Mio
    Durée                                    : 5 min 45s
    Débit global moyen                       : 524 kb/s
    Application utilisée                     : Lavf58.19.102
    
    Vidéo
    ID                                       : 1
    Format                                   : AVC
    Format/Info                              : Advanced Video Codec
    Profil du format                         : Main@L3.1
    Paramètres du format                     : CABAC / 3 Ref Frames
    Paramètres du format, CABAC              : Oui
    Paramètres du format, RefFrames          : 3 images
    Identifiant du codec                     : avc1
    Identifiant du codec/Info                : Advanced Video Coding
    Durée                                    : 5 min 45s
    Débit                                    : 388 kb/s
    Largeur                                  : 1 280 pixels
    Hauteur                                  : 720 pixels
    Format à l'écran                         : 16/9
    Type d'images/s                          : Constant
    Images par seconde                       : 30,000 Im/s
    Espace de couleurs                       : YUV
    Sous-échantillonnage de la chrominance   : 4:2:0
    Profondeur des couleurs                  : 8 bits
    Type de balayage                         : Progressif
    Bits/(Pixel*Image)                       : 0.014
    Taille du flux                           : 16,0 Mio (74%)
    Titre                                    : ISO Media file produced by Google Inc. Created on: 03/19/2019.
    Gamme de couleurs                        : Limited
    Coordonnées de chromaticité              : BT.709
    Caractéristiques du transfert            : BT.709
    Coefficients de la matrice               : BT.709
    Codec configuration box                  : avcC
    
    Audio
    ID                                       : 2
    Format                                   : AAC LC
    Format/Info                              : Advanced Audio Codec Low Complexity
    Identifiant du codec                     : mp4a-40-2
    Durée                                    : 5 min 45s
    Type de débit                            : Constant
    Débit                                    : 128 kb/s
    Canaux                                   : 2 canaux
    Channel layout                           : L R
    Echantillonnage                          : 44,1 kHz
    Images par seconde                       : 43,066 Im/s (1024 SPF)
    Mode de compression                      : Avec perte
    Taille du flux                           : 5,27 Mio (24%)
    Titre                                    : ISO Media file produced by Google Inc. Created on: 03/19/2019.
    Default                                  : Oui
    AlternateGroup/String                    : 1
    In this case the re-encoding serves absolutely no purpose, but their stupid algorithm has to do it anyway.
    Last edited by abolibibelot; 22nd Aug 2019 at 12:15.
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  7. Originally Posted by abolibibelot View Post
    In this case the re-encoding serves absolutely no purpose, but their stupid algorithm has to do it anyway.
    Several years ago, if the videos were in the same format as what they used (FLV at the time, I believe), they didn't reencode. However, I believe they decided to reencode everything because of malware that might be hidden within the uploaded videos.

    In the OP's case, though, he's not asking about videos that were crap to begin with.
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  8. Member
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    Just thought of this. One of the reasons Youtube may reencode videos is to prevent people from using it as file storage. Especially if you set the video to private.

    Edit; I never heart about Google Takeout and after reading this article, I still don't understand what it does beyond Google Drive. But, what it isn't is an alternative to Youtube downloads for the non-uploader as it's personal storage. https://www.androidguys.com/tips-tools/google-takeout-what-is-it-how-use-it/
    Last edited by lingyi; 22nd Aug 2019 at 15:03.
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  9. In the OP's case, though, he's not asking about videos that were crap to begin with.
    Well, crap is an excellent fertilizer...
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  10. Another inconsistency I just noticed coincidentally :
    This video shows a single still picture in quite poor quality, yet the downloaded 1280x720 file has a relatively high video bitrate of 598kbps.
    This similar video shows several still pictures in better quality, yet the downloaded 1280x720 file has a very low video bitrate of 89kbps.
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  11. I use 4k downloader and there is a slight loss in video quality compared to when I watch it on the youtube channel.

    Tried with youtube-dl (cmd command) and it gives exact same result, a slight loss of quality, small, but enough to make you want to watch the video on youtube instead of the downloaded file. It's not lossless.

    Any solution?
    Last edited by ScareDe2; 26th Apr 2020 at 19:41.
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  12. Originally Posted by ScareDe2 View Post
    Tried with youtube-dl (cmd command) and it gives exact same result, a slight loss of quality, small, but enough to make you want to watch the video on youtube instead of the downloaded file. It's not lossless.
    youtube-dl can download the same streams you see in the browser. Either:
    1.) you are not downloading the same streams (in youtube right-click -> "stats for nerds" shows you which streams you are watching) or
    2.) you are imagining things or
    3.) your player is somehow worse/different than your browser's video playback

    Image
    [Attachment 52925 - Click to enlarge]

    Image
    [Attachment 52926 - Click to enlarge]
    Quote Quote  
  13. Member
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    When you upload a video to YouTube, it will always be re-encoded there, for several reasons (e.g. to avoid embedded malware, and to optimize the bitrate distribution for streaming purposes). When you download a publicly presented video format and compare it with the video you uploaded, there will be quality loss.

    Your original upload may be stored additionally, but I don't know for sure under which circumstances this happens, possibly not for all content producers, and it will surely not be available for presentation.
    Quote Quote  
  14. Originally Posted by sneaker View Post
    Originally Posted by ScareDe2 View Post
    Tried with youtube-dl (cmd command) and it gives exact same result, a slight loss of quality, small, but enough to make you want to watch the video on youtube instead of the downloaded file. It's not lossless.
    youtube-dl can download the same streams you see in the browser. Either:
    1.) you are not downloading the same streams (in youtube right-click -> "stats for nerds" shows you which streams you are watching) or
    2.) you are imagining things or
    3.) your player is somehow worse/different than your browser's video playback

    Image
    [Attachment 52925 - Click to enlarge]

    Image
    [Attachment 52926 - Click to enlarge]
    It's easier to detect the difference watching a video sequence showing water sparkling in sun light. But I can detect it with pretty much any image really. I tried to copy paste the video in my browser and watch it there, but there is still a difference compared to when I watch it on the youtube channel. Maybe the youtube player is more performant? I tried VLC, Windows player, a couple of others along with the browser player - always a slight decrease in quality.

    I am gonna pay more attention to the number you show and retry a download.

    And same problem again. Any solution?
    Last edited by ScareDe2; 28th Apr 2020 at 14:43.
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    Maybe the YouTube presentation in the website is scaled, so there you don't see the video 1:1 as encoded?
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  16. Originally Posted by LigH.de View Post
    Maybe the YouTube presentation in the website is scaled, so there you don't see the video 1:1 as encoded?
    I can rescale everything to match perfectly, and when comparing the downloaded file with the one seen on the youtube channel, the image is not the same. You don't see that? I can agree that it is subtle, but... the downloaded file is definitely worst.

    Or maybe the youtube player has an hidden filter embellishing the image, I don't know.
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  17. mr. Eric-jan's Avatar
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    UniConverter ! copy&paste the url of the YT video, or any url of a page from a videoclip, any you can choose the resolution, easy to work with or you only download the sound into mp3 file,
    it's a paid app, but has many more feautures, you like, convert, edit, color effects/correction, etc..
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  18. Originally Posted by Eric-jan View Post
    UniConverter ! copy&paste the url of the YT video, or any url of a page from a videoclip, any you can choose the resolution, easy to work with or you only download the sound into mp3 file,
    it's a paid app, but has many more feautures, you like, convert, edit, color effects/correction, etc..
    I had one free download with UniConverter and it gave the same result than with youtube-dl. I start to assume there is no possible way to download a better version of the youtube video. So it has to be either youtube sending a slightly compressed file during the download or the youtube player doing some tricks like adding a filter so the image looks nicer. I don't see any other possibilities. Any clue?

    Here is an example, capture from the browser player playing the downloaded file (any downloaded files gave same result, either from youtube-dl, UniConverter, 4k downloader, ect...)


    And here is the capture from the youtube video
    Last edited by ScareDe2; 29th Apr 2020 at 14:48.
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  19. mr. Eric-jan's Avatar
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    Don't know.... UniConverter i use on my MacBook Pro, i can't see any quality loss, youtube-dl isn't available on Mac OS, UniConveter is much more, you can select which resolution stream you want to download so maybe it's overkill to just use it for saving Youtube videos, i also use it to convert my VHS captures, BBC sound streams, (not the iPlayer ones) i find the GUI very comfortable, & user vriendly
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  20. you can check what is available on youtube using this command (already shown above): youtube-dl -F link-to-your-video
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  21. Originally Posted by ScareDe2 View Post
    so the image looks nicer.
    "Nicer" is subjective.

    Originally Posted by ScareDe2 View Post
    Here is an example
    [...]
    Your browser is converting the colors differently than your other player (BT.601 vs BT.709). That does not mean what you download is worse than what the browser gets (it isn't), only that it's displayed differently.
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  22. It basically looks very similar but if you look closely you can see the color are a bit more lively on youtube while the "lossless" download gives a deader picture, and I would say some three-dimensionality loss. The video above was filmed in 1989 in an amusement park and it shows quite a lot of interesting coasters and point of views making it an amazing document about how the site was 30 years ago. Only problem is, I find the youtube version way better to watch.
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  23. Originally Posted by sneaker View Post
    Originally Posted by ScareDe2 View Post
    so the image looks nicer.
    "Nicer" is subjective.

    Originally Posted by ScareDe2 View Post
    Here is an example
    [...]
    Your browser is converting the colors differently than your other player (BT.601 vs BT.709). That does not mean what you download is worse than what the browser gets (it isn't), only that it's displayed differently.
    So every players convert colors differently? How can I get the same color conversion used on youtube? I prefer it.
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  24. Try MPC-HC with madVR. Press ctrl+shift+alt+m to switch through the different matrices.
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  25. mr. Eric-jan's Avatar
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    UniConverter has color correcting options for that, but it is like said before, a matter of taste, and seing both versions next to eachother....
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  26. Originally Posted by sneaker View Post
    Try MPC-HC with madVR. Press ctrl+shift+alt+m to switch through the different matrices.
    I have everything installed following a youtube tutorial (MPC-HC, madvr, Lavfilter and xysubfilter), but pressing ctrl+shift+alt+m doesn't work. I don't know how to change color conversion either.
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  27. BTW I highly recommend youtube-dl. Yes it is command line, but once you get used to it, it is so much simpler than all the GUI tools.

    What I can't figure out is why on YouTube you can watch this video in 1080p, but... when you query the resolutions (1st command) it claims the highest resolution is only 720p. Also, when you download it asking for the highest quality, it only pulls down 720p intead of 1080p...

    C:\youtube-dl.exe -F https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oegRlg9V4q8
    C:\youtube-dl.exe -f bestvideo+bestaudio https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oegRlg9V4q8
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  28. with Jdownloader
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  29. Originally Posted by Videoenthusiat View Post
    BTW I highly recommend youtube-dl. Yes it is command line, but once you get used to it, it is so much simpler than all the GUI tools.

    What I can't figure out is why on YouTube you can watch this video in 1080p, but... when you query the resolutions (1st command) it claims the highest resolution is only 720p. Also, when you download it asking for the highest quality, it only pulls down 720p intead of 1080p...

    C:\youtube-dl.exe -F https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oegRlg9V4q8
    C:\youtube-dl.exe -f bestvideo+bestaudio https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oegRlg9V4q8
    Try with the command youtube-dl -f 248+251 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oegRlg9V4q8

    As shown above in an earlier post, right click the youtube video, click stats, then you see the codecs line ending with (248)/opus (251). That means -f 248+251. And you have the 1080p. Works?
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  30. Originally Posted by ScareDe2 View Post
    I have everything installed following a youtube tutorial (MPC-HC, madvr, Lavfilter and xysubfilter), but pressing ctrl+shift+alt+m doesn't work. I don't know how to change color conversion either.
    Did you select madVR as video renderer in MPC-HC's Options ("Playback"->"Output")? See MPC-HC's filter list ("Play"->"Filters") during playback to make sure it is loaded.
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