I occasionally record an OTA TV show, cut the commercials out, then encode with HEVC and AAC audio. More often than not, the source video is standard definition content. The files are .TS files with MPEG-2 video, 2 channel Dolby Digital audio, and closed captioning. Also, the frame rate is a constant 29.97
In the past I have used free/cheap tools I have to do this. I use Smart Cutter to get frame specific cuts and then use VidCoder to convert to x265 with AAC audio as an mkv file. The results are satisfactory and the closed captioning is preserved in the subtitles. Smart Cutter is one of the easiest and quickest tools I have ever used for cutting, but it has some issues and there seems to be no chance of updates/fixes. It crashes quite often, but more importantly, there is usually one cut location that will not be frame specific for some reason and I have no idea why. So there will be a frame or two of unwanted video that makes it in to the final video. Oddly it is usually only one cut location.
Then I remembered that my small company pays for the Adobe Creative Cloud so I decided to try Premiere Pro. I hadn't used it in more than 10-15 years. However I quickly got back up to speed. But when I import the .TS file and place it in the source monitor, I notice the audio and video is out of sync by about 1 second. The same happens if I load it to the timeline panel and play it in the program panel. I tried exporting the video before editing anything and the 1 second mismatch was still there. I was able to unlink the audio and video and manually move the video 1 second to the right in the timeline panel and then export and it worked fine. So this means I have to do all of my cutting/deleting in the timeline panel instead of just adding what I want from the source monitor, but that is no big deal. However having to manually line up the audio and video tracks (which are already lined up just fine in every other player or editor I have used) is a bit annoying. Is there anything that I can do to prevent this from happening? I have read that Premiere Pro has these issues with variable frame rate sources, but my source is constant frame rate. Also, Premiere does not seem to recognize the closed captioning in the source file, is this something I am doing wrong, or can Premier Pro not read this?
At this point I feel like I am forced to use the free/cheap tools and have a sloppy cut, or use Premiere Pro and have to manually line up the audio and lose the subtitles. Thanks for any suggestions.
+ Reply to Thread
Results 1 to 12 of 12
Last edited by lemmy999; 11th Apr 2021 at 09:53.
Most of the popular editors that are used primarily for editing recordings from digital cameras will strip out closed captions because those are not present in recordings made by cameras. Also, broadcast TS streams aren't as orderly and error-free as the digital streams from cameras and that can also cause sync issues or crash camera-oriented editors.
If you are willing to pay the asking price then VideoReDo TVSuite v6 might be a better choice for what you want to do than the programs you have mentioned in your post. It preserves closed captions as closed captions in MPEG-2 video when the user doesn't choose to re-encode the video and it preserves closed captions as closed captions when editing MPEG-2 and exporting as H.264. I haven't tried editing MPEG-2 video and exporting as HEVC, but I'm guessing that will also preserve closed captions as closed captions in that case.
I don't think VideoReDo TVSuite v6 has the ability to convert closed captions to burned-in subtitles. If you'd prefer to convert closed captions to burned-in subtitles then edit your recordings with VideoReDo Plus, which costs less but only edits and outputs MPEG-2, and use Vidcoder on the edited video to convert the MPEG-2video to HEVC and burn-in subtitles.
[Edit]There is a free trial available for both versions of VideoReDo so you can try before you buy.
Last edited by usually_quiet; 11th Apr 2021 at 11:28.Ignore list: hello_hello, tried, TechLord, Snoopy329
Thanks for the suggestions.
I have looked in to TS-Doctor (trial) and it cut very well, preserved the subtitles and is a good price (~$40), but I found the process of finding the commercials and making the cuts to be quite cumbersome, especially when compared to SmartCutter.
I have looked in to VideoReDo, but haven't given the trial a shot yet. Since I do not do this very often, the price is just a bit steep for me. I like the idea that I could cut and encode in one tool, but since I want subtitles I guess I would only be using its cutting capabilities and still encoding using VidCoder.
I am not wanting burned-in subtitles (if by that you mean subtitles that can't be turned off). I am wanting subtitles that can be turned on or off. I am not that educated when it comes to subtitles and closed captioning. But if I understand correctly, the closed captioning that is in the OTA broadcast stream (and therefore my .TS file) is a bit different than the subtitles that are in the final product that VidCoder is putting out. At least they appear a bit different visually and also are shown differently in MediaInfo.
I would just go with VideoReDo Plus since it would provide the cutting (which is really the only issue I have with my SmartCutter/VidCoder process), but on very rare instances I need to cut a screen capture from my Mac and that is not MPEG-2.
Last edited by usually_quiet; 11th Apr 2021 at 20:32. Reason: Added a missing wordIgnore list: hello_hello, tried, TechLord, Snoopy329
So if I import the .TS file with CC into VideoReDo, make my cuts and save it in the same format as the original, the CC content would remain and could be extracted to SRT with CCExtractor. But if I were to use VideoReDo to cut and then encode to x265, I would assume the CC content would be gone at that point. Is that correct?
The ideal final product is an .MKV file with the subtitles contained within that file that could be easily turned on or off. That is what is created with my current method.
I have read more about this. I learned that in the original file, the 608 closed captioning is muxed or embedded in to the video stream. VideoReDo would retain this and the output MKV file would still have them embedded in the video stream, but most players don't look for the captions there on an MKV file, they expect a separate SRT (or .ASS in my case) captions for MKV files.
So it sounds like I would have to open the .TS file in VRD, make my cuts and save as .TS file again. Then use CCExtractor to extract the CC to an SRT file, then open the .TS file in VRD again and encode to H265 MKV file. Then use something like MKVmerge to put the SRT file into the MKV file. So that would be quite a few steps. It would be much simpler to just use VRD to cut the commercials out then send the .TS file it outputs over to VidCoder to encode and convert/embed the subtitles to an MKV file....in other words just using VRD as a fairly expensive video editor.
Still, I plan on trying the trial to see what I think.
You can't lossless cut (remove commercials) in Premiere. So for that reason, no Premiere for mere TV show recordings (my hobby work).
I've never liked Smart Cutter, and still use Womble for MPEG broadcasts. (Womble is defunct, but some of us still have licensede copies, especially from the GAoTD days.) MPEG Video Wizard is fine in at least Win7, but I need to test in Win10 sometime. MPEG-VCR is a bit buggy on modern OS, and longer recordings. I was never overly fond of VideoReDo, the GUI was too kiddie and candy-coated, settings hidden. Also not bug-free, which it should be for $100.
And then the MainConcept SDK version of encoding (Premiere) has fallen behind some for H.264 and 265 encoding. Not necessarily in quality, but in terms of options and ease of use. I can encode far easier in Hybrid (freeware), with very granular settings.
Somewhere, I think on my old WinXP virtual machine, I still have licensed copies of MPEG-VCR and I think MPEG Video Wizard. The machine I am doing this on is Windows 7, so if they will work on Win7 I should be set. 10-15 years back I used those quite a bit and I never remember having an issue with those tools. Thanks for the suggestion.
I really like the interface for Smart Cutter (even though it is ugly) because I like how you can quickly slide to the commercial location and then you have the fine scroll section above to get to the cut location. I don't think I have ever used a tool that enables me to get to my desired cut location more quickly. But I have never used a tool that crashes so often and I can't figure out why it sometimes will not execute a frame specific cut. The Womble tools never had that issue. I contacted the Smart Cutter developer and surprisingly they answered. I provided example videos to show how it sometimes fails to do a frame specific cut, and I never heard back from them. They claimed they planned on continuing to develop it, but you can't even register for the forum anymore.
Since I was trying to cut and then encode to a different codec so being able to save it back to MPEG2 with lossless cutting wouldn't be needed. So I thought Premiere would work well for me. But I really wasn't impressed. I guess it just isn't a tool that was intended to be used for what I am doing.
Although I never tried to export my edited video from VideoReDo TV Suite as HEVC to see if it retained closed captions, VideoReDo TV Suite doesn't list an exception for HEVC, so I expect closed captions are preserved in the edited file when it is exported as HEVC.Ignore list: hello_hello, tried, TechLord, Snoopy329
VidCoder to encode the Smart Cutter output (which leaves the 608 closed captioning in place like VRD) and VidCoder converts those subtitles to ASS and inserts them in to the resulting MKV file (which has HEVC video). Then while playing the MKV, the subtitles can be enabled or disabled. Since VRD leaves the 608 subtitles intact, I would think VidCoder would do the same with output from VRD as well.
I read a thread over on the VRD forum where the developing said the 608 closed captioning will indeed remain when an MKV file is output from their software, but it would be muxed with the video stream and most players do not look for the subtitles there when playing MKV files. I emailed the developer and they said that at this time I would need to use VRD to cut, then use the resulting MPEG output file (with 608 closed captioning in place) and encode to HEVC MKV file with VidCoder. However they did say the ability to convert 608 to ASS will be added to VRD soon and at that point it would be a single tool solution for what I am doing.
Ignore list: hello_hello, tried, TechLord, Snoopy329
I've used Power DVD in the past and currently use Kodi, VLC and NextPVR (I used this to schedule my recordings).
I could be wrong, but I think MKV is similar to MP4, but it supports having multiple subtitles streams within the container. I don't think MP4 files support subtitles in the same way.
The MPEG Video Wizard (suggested by Lord Smurf) was going to be a perfect solution for me as I still had an old version of that laying around. It did a great job on the cuts and is nearly as quick as Smart Cutter. However after removing the unwanted sections, the resulting exported .TS file has the EIA-608 text scrambled. If I can't find a solution to that problem, I guess I will end up going with the cheaper variation of VideoReDo. Thanks