I have a raw capture here. Its only been mirrored and inverted. (Not sure why RGB24 insists to capture inside out).
vhs to extron7sc upscaled 480p (have a nice higher res capture also, but dont want to push it here yet until i find what's best quality)
Toshiba w614, no svideo out, using composite rca to bnc, then vga out to cap card, vga->dvi adapter
datapath vision rgb e1
huffyuv yv12 median / adaptive tables
personal storage, final archiving family data, med-high compression, deleting all source after processing
h264 acm or mpeg192 stereo, avi (maybe mp4, prob avi)
I would like to know if this looks like a solid capture (first 3 links), if there is any major glaring issues here in not seeing, but moreover, what are the squiggly zig-zag lines from? Is that a mistake? How do i grapple those. I saw one post say they were "hum bars". I googled that, yielded nothing except grey static, etc.. Any other filters i might need on this source that im missing? By the way, i plan to move to home videos next, the animation was just used for initial testing, but will be part of the lot of captures-to-come.
a different frame, 300% zoom, you can see it in the middle of the eyes there.
There was some frames, from another capture, not rgb, but yuy2, well here ill grab those, where it was really exaggerated.
https://pasteboard.co/K0dIsDOm.png and same piece post compression https://pasteboard.co/K0dHi2F.png
That's not the one where the black was really exaggerated but you can see the (chroma?) there being off, I'm not sure how to fix that bright white line, next to the black, unless that's artists rendering, but you can see other issues i there i think.
Is that a chroma shift? TO me looks like timing issue on scan lines or something.
So what is this called?
Any filters on vdub to combat it?
I tried Flaxen VHS already, but beyond the chroma shift, which didn't help, i cant figure out where its from or how to deal with it.
Also, notice the colorations in the vcr print (sp.. etc..). I see some blue and red chroma shift in there too is that? Is that related to the issue?
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Last edited by wolfdogg; 3rd May 2021 at 14:10. Reason: clarifying setup.
Try capturing in Huffy 4:2:2 chroma, 720x480
Vdub, I dont see that option, but i see YUY2 YUV 4:2:2 Interleaved, which is what I used on the YUY2 mention there. Is there another name for the one you mention, or did you mean in general use any 4:2:2? The Planar options in vdub wouldnt work.
I do see two other YUV 4:2:2 on bottom now that you mention , HDYC Rec. 701, v210 (10 bit).
OK maybe you mean capture at half the chroma? e.g. 4:2:2? It seems the RGB24 one was more crisp.
Last edited by wolfdogg; 3rd May 2021 at 16:26.
Well I doubt if anyone on here has this hardware workflow and you are going through several 'hoops'
Firstly, you do NOT have IMO a RAW capture. VHS is an interlaced medium and should be captured as interlaced. Is it that upscaler (even though your sample has not actually upscaled - VHS is typically captured as 480i) converting it to progressive ?
Then we have a myriad of cables and connectors to arrive the DVI input on the capture device - a device that was never, again my own opinion, meant for VHS.
The specs for that capture device state composite or component with component to dvi relevant for 480i/p capture.
The artefact appears to my eyes to be cable/line noise and your setup could well be magnifying it.
So, firstly, do a test capture without the upscaler - these never work well with VHS - to see if that improves the issue. Of course you will require another cable to go from composite to dvi.
You need a line time base corrector. And you don't want to deinterlace and upscale while you capture. You have a film source that should be captured interlaced SD then inverse telecined back to 24 fps film frames. Then clean and upscale if you want.
Last edited by jagabo; 3rd May 2021 at 19:18.
The signal has a lot of problems before beating it up with a Scaler and Converter.
The sharp spikey lines in the black lines are timing errors direct from the vcr. Only a line time base corrector can help that, and your only gonna find one on a better vcr.. those are mechanical errors.. the vcr is fighting you.
Then the chroma is shifting due to poor cabling or aging capacitors somewhere.. either the output of the vcr, cables or the input circuitry of the Scaler.. its hard to tell without swapping things in and out to isolate the offender.. it could be a combination.. all of this gear is old.
And finally you've got some awful sharpening going on there causing the ghosting around the objects with hard lines.. probably something in the input settings of the Scaler is attempting to raise the signal to noise ratio before ripping its height and width to make it fit a larger resolution. You kind of have to know not to expect much from a Scaler since its trying to put back in something that isn't real.. and its going to look like a child finger painting all over the image.. it just won't look real. Sharpening by its very nature destroys real resolution and replaces it with "fake" ghosting.. in the hopes the human brain will "blur" it out and "think" its higher resolution.. that trick doesn't really work in the digital realm anymore.. especially since we got above 2K.
If your stuck with the vcr you have.. simpler is probably better.. capture at a real resolution like 720x480 or less for cartoons, 352x240 might be better since that will match the "real" size of the chroma image being superimposed on the luma channel and minimize the chances of "bleed" or "shifting". The timing errors are a symptom of the reliability of the vcr wheels and gears.. a frame time base corrector can help.. one with a velocity corrector like the one in later panasonic DVD recorders would be better.. but using DVD recorders as pass-thru is still controversial, and only later models had the velocity correction feature.
Clearing up the signal path, by swapping cables and eliminating Scalers and unnecessary conversion gear would also help a lot.
Accepting that playback will look better in a window on a PC as opposed to an HDTV will also help.. blowing things up in size.. never helps. It is what it is.. you can't put in resolution and accuracy that wasn't there to begin with.. its like putting lipstick on a pig.. it really isn't going to make things better. You can imagine it looks better to make yourself feel better for buying gear.. but there is a reason studios rescan the negatives at 4K and upload them to streaming services these days.
Thank you for the feedback. I thought this was going to be a good setup, darn. Well, i was recommended, ill find the link later, that a scaler has the TBC feature, or equivalent built into it. Example, this extron documentation talks about correcting bad frames. I felt that was all i needed. The problem i have been trying to solve was a years long virtualdub capture sync issue, when vhs straight to a haupage usb live crapola. so i looked to a tbc, priced them, didn't find anything under 350/400, out of my hobbyist range ATM, so as you can imagine i was excited to see someone having success with scalers, something i hadn't really thought of before.
The scaler supported analog, as opposed to HDMI, so i figured $40 wasnt a bad deal. Well it turns out it cleans up the video nicely. I have an option where i can turn on or off the 2:2 pulldown, and it says it detects 3:2, but maybe thats auto, i don't see that on/off switch in the menu, as i do for the 2:2. Its lowest scale is 640x480, I have had luck with that, the 480p, 720p, 480 6hz, 720 60hz, 1080i 60hz, 1080p 60hz captures. I would rather keep the video compressed, as it should, and let other hardware scalers to the work later. Therefore the goal of the scaler was simply for the TBC effect.
Now that i had an Extron 7sc, and haupage usb live, that will NOT get a preview or cap on VirtualDub anymore, i decided to get a new card. I have also been experimenting with VirtualVCR, AmCap, and a couple others. Anyhow, as i was saying the Extron, well, its RGB. Thats cool, cause its capturing RGB, isnt it? so signal doesnt change at all. Now, Vdub has RGB24 capture, thats cool isnt it? no color conversion yet. Now can filter with still no color conversions, ideally. You guys would know better, so please feel free to (politely) correct me here where im mistaken. I set huffyuv to yv12, im confused at how if vdub is set to capture at rgb24, and huff to yv12, whats really happening there. An explanation on that would be helpful. There's a lot of docs there, and I'm a bit overwhelmed i think with that.
Now, lets get to mechanical. I tested, as mentioned, connecting the VCR straight to the cap card, to rule out the scaler as the terrible mangling of the video interpolation, or whatever its called. Since i purchased the Datapath RGB card, it only takes RGB. @DB83 the DVI portion of it, is still just a connector, its not actually Digital, no HDMI, etc.. I don't like the connector type either.
The mechanical SUCKS on the W614 Vcr i found. I wasn't able to connect it straight to RGB, using composite, as you can imagine, i was able to use one of my adapters to push it through a vga to rca converter box. I still saw the same issue on the signal. That rules out the scaler.
Since the only way i can capture, is through my scaler, I would like to try to get a clear VCR signal into it, to get a few frames to see what you guys think of that, since this person touted it so highly. (need to find the link still for you). Again, i wasnt planning on scaling (blowing) up the resolution with it, although to my unknowledgeable self it did sound wise at the time in hindsight. Well, i know better, however I still wonder, doesn't the hardware in this scale it as good as tv hardware, if not better, since its made for it, and professional? Just a thought anyway.
So i took your feedback, and that is mine. Can you guys double back and please give me some final thoughts on this in a constructive way that will work in the confines of my setup? I was hoping to capture with vdub huffyuv (@yv12?) with format 720x480, or 640x480, via scaler, which already deinterlaces it i believe. I can set the 2:2 pulldown, i thought totally should be doing that for the capture, then capture at full frame, no cropping.
Then later run it through anything, staxrip, vdub h264/ac3, handbrake, whatever. I just want to make sure im feeding it the best signal i can. The vcr sucks, so ill be changing that. Any recommendations for under $50, and $100? I just need a clean playback. TBC or not, to fill out this workflow pattern, to see if I can get a decent capture. Ill let you guys be the judge of that. Not sure if it will be crappy, but it sounds like you guys are saying it will most assuredly. I would like to proof it, with a few frames. I need a decent VCR first. Ill see if i can adjust the heads on the other two that i have here. One is a dvd v9700, is that VCR any good?
Oh, and im totally not capturing audio through it, im running that through the haupage capture, and can also use my soundcard, everything is ran though the mixer.
Ok, open to suggestions on specific parts of the workflow above. Thanks for the feedback
Last edited by wolfdogg; 10th May 2021 at 17:25.
Analog video conversion to digital is defined according to the Rec.601 standard back when the need to digitize analog tapes arose, All capture cards follow this standard. Scalers, HDMI converters, DVI/RGB/VGA adapters don't, Therefor they cannot guarantee the quality of capture desired, They are good for displaying a signal on a monitor but they cannot generate a digital video file up to the Rec.601 standard. Most of those devices don't even have a 480i and that's a red flag for analog capturing.
Is it bad, if its deinterlaced at the source like this, during capture, as far as quality, given the end result i will need? better to keep them interlaced and let vlc deinterlace it then, on LAN playback?
Well, i do want them to spec, for the most part, because i plan to start the cataloging system now, and pass it on to next generation, so things should be future proofed slightly.
@D883, also i tried a different VGA cable. The issue didn't clean up at all. However the idea of using a VGA over composite in my opinion seems way cleaner since it's straight RGB, connecting through a VGA signal, which i think since it carries its signals separately would be better wouldn't it? And I don't see how its a cacophony since its straight RGB to DVI(RGB). I did however re-extract one of my DVI cables from circulation here, which I will try somehow, but I will need to adapt it straight off the back of the RGB/VGA connector, or the BNC connectors. I would like to get RGBhv BNC to DVI adapter, so i can do straight BNC< since i feel that may be cleaner than VGA to DVI that its using now. Ideas there?
Another question; So, the zig zag lines are interpolation errors? or what are they called? And they are caused by mechanical that a TBC would correct, and obviously the scaler isn't correcting? That part I would like to know, since its relevant to this post, and I'm trying to figure out what's going on here.
Edit: Thanks JWillis for the good description in your post on this also, it took time to absorb.
Last edited by wolfdogg; 17th May 2021 at 17:03.
I saw no reference to a line time base corrector in that Extron manual. Just a frame sync or frame TBC. Those are important to keep audio and video in sync but the do not fix the timing of the source's individual scan lines (horizontal jitter) -- the cause of the left/right shift in your caps. The spinning head of a VCR is constantly speeding up and slowing down trying to maintain the correct speed. That causes many scan lines to be longer or shorter than they are supposed to be, and to shift left and right. A line TBC adjust the length of each scan line (sync pulse to sync pulse) and lines them up properly.
Analog video is not RGB. It should be captured as YCbCr as that is what's closest to what's in the s-video or composite signal.
Hardware deinterlacers aren't as good as the best software deinterlacers. You are locking in that inferior deinterlacing if you capture progressive.
using a scaler for a media converter (one type of connector to another type of connector) scarifices a lot, and encourages you to make bad decisions.
the root of your problem is the capture device that you have.. which it sounds like your working on correcting.. but hoping you can make what you have work "better".
i don't think anyone is going to be in your exact situation and going to figure it out for you.. there are too many variables.
scalers are just a bad idea from the get-go, they were made basically for one market.. churches and projector presentation rooms. I use one as a "switcher" but would never use it as a tbc.. it does have sync recovery circuitry.. it has to to stop the squiggles and shifting.. but its not a real tbc.. it won't perform magic... its better than nothing, but that is a very low bar to hurtle
churches dumped a huge metric ton of hardware scalers on the market at pennies on the dollar about six or seven years ago, many with old style connectors and media converters built in.. so they looked tailor made for the problem your having.. but that was not what they were made for.. video capture from vhs signals.. they're really best with high contrast stable image sources and whip the scale up to "fit" HDMI or DVI inputs on projectors.. but look awful when you take in the whole picture by downsizing it to a regular TV or PC screen
the 480p versus 480i problem is a demonstration of the original intent.. convert an analog signal to a DVI digital "progressive" signal by de-interlacing for you before throwing it at a "progressive" projector.. de-interlacing is always a devils bargain.. it can't work without throwing away resolution and introducing artifacts.. that's why its best to by-pass the devils bargain and always capture in interlaced mode.. some future method for de-interlacing will always be superior.. all we know about the future.. is that we will know how to do things better later..
so yeah.. all bad news.. I've been there.. I still have several hardware scalers bought at rock bottom, ridiculous prices.. that work like new.. for their purpose.. and aren't worth anything for video capture purposes
one thing you might ought to do is back up and think about the scope and purpose of your project.. if its a few tapes.. you can spend the time to perfect your PC capture solution.. and move forward. If its a lot of tapes.. heaven help you.. but you probably ought to think of a stand alone capture box that produces the files RAW or Compressed on a hard drive or SSD for you.. which you can then save or edit.. that scales much quicker and involves a lot less mix and match of old gear that takes a lot of experience to get to work.
A Hauppauge Live2 capture dongle with VirtualDub (even with a TBC and primo VCR) will produce Raw capture files that will drift out of sync.. that is the nature of that setup.. its a given.. its a certainty.. that work flow is only for someone who (plans) to spend time re-syncing their audio and video.. and (plans) to perform post processing by hand with softwre.. its a laborious workflow.. not for the faint of heart.. its a full time job and expected.
The only time a Raw capture flow makes sense is for "Short"... "Short, Short, Short" video captures like from a Camcorder no more than 15 or 30 minutes at a time. That minimizes the drift. And only with high speed good signals, like S-VHS coming from a S-Video cable. 8 hour VHS tapes from a quasi-VHS tape player is absolutely the worst situation and most people would warn you up front to never do that.. its doomed.
You could maybe get away from raw capture of 1 or 2 hour "programs" from VHS tape.. and "live with" audio and video de-sync if you have a TBC, and just chop the captures up over time if you wanted to capture everything off a VHS tape.. but I think I'm doing you a disservice recommending that.. in fact I don't.
Personally.. I am kind of partial to using a DVD recorder with a built-in HDD that you can use Isobuster to copy off the recordings to a PC. It captures at MPEG2, can do very high bit rate recordings without forcing you to burn DVDs and copy the recordings from the HDD to the PC at the maximum speed of the hard drives. DVD recorders were designed with circuits to handle all of the problems of VHS tape conversion.. all in one box. But if you need to insert a TBC to get a better result, use a separate VHS recorder in tandem with a TBC and then DVD recorder.
I have collected.. a lot of dongles, capture boxes and USB, PCI, PCI express capture devices.. but when I get serious.. I run back to a good old reliable DVD recorder with HDD.
Of modern gear.. I preach about the AverMedia ER310 as a Component/HDMI H.264 solution.. and I'm getting ready to evaluate a new 2021 ER330. The ER310 with YPbPr Input works well with a JVC MX1 in PAL or NTSC modes, and the MX1 has S-Video Input to capture from its internal VHS or an external VHS recorder.
The ER330 is only available direct from Taiwan at the moment since it was only announced in English March 1,2021 it is a Composite/HDMI H.264 or H.265 solution. I wish it had S-Video.. but I'm hoping it has a good Comb filter.
Raw YUV 422 is great in theory, and some people can work wonders with it.. but it just beat me down.. and the audio/video de-sync are dispiriting. Its a lot of work.
MPEG2 is a long known and trusted format, not as small as H.264 or H.265, but good enough for archival purposes for me.
I tend to think MPEG2 is good enough for SVHS or other high speed, good resolution and quality capture. And DV is not that bad for VHS or other low speed, medium resolution poorer quality capture.. although DV produces large 35 GB per hour files .. MPEG2 are just what I grew up expecting.. 1 GB per hour for DVD (or better) quality capture. DV and MPEG2 hardware capture "generally" does not have audio/video sync issues.. the hardware ncoder has to "settle" disputes between dropped frames and lost samples from the video and audio streams in the real-time, they are being muxed together into one file stream.. so a bad capture might have a click, pop or disjointed image scene.. but its over and done with and in the past very quickly.. it doesn't linger as a long term temporal punishment for the entire length of the show.
I located the link that i have been citing, for using a Scaler as an alternative to TBC http://www.unterzuber.com/TBC.html.
Awaiting more suggestions. I really appreciate the last. Sounds like something Im willing to do. Looks like the avermedia 310 is about $110, but its only component, i would need a good vcr anyway. oh confusing since i dont want to pay $400, so how can I do this with a TBC otherwise? they literally are all $400 and up.
I have 3 banana boxes of VHS tapes, most are to be digitized. Its been a WIP for last 15 years actually. This is only how far i got so far. haha. I have a drive with various compressed formats, no serious workflow yet. I got close to getting mpeg2 capture working on linux box, capture on same run as compression. I like the idea of compressing on capture, mpeg-2, in a box, actually, and using what a .ts file to convert out, that would be great prob. Would also be great if i can go h264/265 eventually, will just be home playback.
tbc are a hopeless approach today, in theory they are what you want to do.. but in practices they are too rare and expensive today.
tbc its more an idea than one thing anyway, its input signal conditioning, correcting and filtering
some capture devices have the same thing as a tbc built-into the input circuitry of the capture device.. cheap ones do not, more expensive and advanced professional ones do
in general.. any hardware compression capture device (has to) have a tbc of some type.. to prevent loss of signal.. which will stop the hardware encoding process cold.mostly the old school word for this is a "frame buffer" which stores the last full frame and repeats it to keep the datastream moving along at a consistent rate
"correction" as in shrinking or stretching the lines, and recovering the sync pulses, straightening up the color burst, those are more advanced features which were included with more expensive DVD recorders or alter capture devices that understood and "targeted" VHS signal capture
so you can get the equivalent of a famous tbc, simply by being careful choosing your capture device.. you will pay more for a more advanced capture device.. but the expense is warranted because you don't need a generic "tbc" to do the same thing
in this case the cheapy "dongles" like the GV-USB2 or other $12 capture dongles have next to no input signal conditioning.. and as a result.. drop frames, loose audio samples.. and just do a bad job of capturing from a poor signal that has a lot of problems
Raw YUV 422 capture definitely requires the "best" tbc you can find or afford.. you need it.. a DV codec, or an MPEG2 capture box will have the equivalent circuitry and bonus.. produce a smaller final file.. so if you can't afford a tbc.. the next best thing is probably.. obtain a "best you can afford and well understood hardware compression capture device"
And older 2000 or 2001 DV or Raw YUV 422 capture dongle basically has nothing to help it, a much later version 2010 or 2012 MPEG2 or HD hardware compression device (before 2013) will often have a tbc or signal correction "chip" inside the capture device itself.
Things evolved, 12 years was a long long long time in computer hardware, its like attending High School three times.. its that long.. the difference between "Early video capture dongles" and the "Last of the capture dongles" changed a lot.
They've stopped making most capture dongles that worked best with VHS a long time ago.. 2013 at the latest.. after that they became repurposed mostly for camcorder capture or document cameras.. that's when TWAIN device drivers started being bundled with them.. for movies.. and still photo capture
Game Capture came along after that and HD Game Capture boxes took over.. mostly HDMI, some with Component Inputs.. only a very tiny niche market existed for Satellite Component or S-Video.. leaving mostly DVD recorders with the most advanced technology until 2018. In early 2019 Isobuster gained the ability to read the recordings off about 50 different brands and models of DVD recorders with HDD drives.. and that in my (opinion) is the pinnacle of video capture technology for S-VHS and VHS.. however even those are getting rarer and more expensive.. and Isobuster only supports 50-75 different brands and models.. so you have to get a specific brand and model to go that path.
I explore and collect video capture dongles and devices.. I have not found the "Perfect one" for every case.
I have some opinions.. far too lengthy and nuanced to blog about here.
One of the best MPEG2 USB capture boxes I have seen for example had a built-in tbc and is solid as a rock.. it sells for about $10 today on auction sites, but I can't recommend it because its best capture software is no longer sold.. it works with Windows Media Center on every version of Windows.. but WMC is hard to configure.. and Microsoft no longer supports it and its not for Windows 10.. so lots and lots of reasons not to mention it.
And I'm still an infant when it comes to my knowledge base.. I am constantly getting the carpet yanked out from under me trying to find the most optimal capture workflow.. its very frustrating.
Per your description 3 boxes of tapes.
I would think a good MPEG2 TV Tuner and probably Windows Media Center would get you to where you want to go.
That is not without challenges, but you would get a hardware encoder that would probably perform the tbc function for you and easily store the files to your PC in a browseable directory.
There should be no audio sync issues.
The specific MPEG2 TV Tuner would depend on what's available to you and how you want to connect it to the PC, PCI/PCI express or USB 2.0 ect..
Obviously for you it will require a Composite input for your VCR.. but a VCR with S-Video out would be better.. but beggars can't be choosers.. and you can learn with your Composite VCR.
I'm very curious about this AverMedia ER330 with Composite Input.. AverMedia is generally a very good company.. better than most China offerings and better than Hauppauge. Its new and expensive compared to most surplus junk on auction sites.
But its the first in a long time with a specific Ad campaign supporting ('VHS') capture specifically (in 2021 !!!) .. which I hope means tbc and comb filter functions on the input.
It can also store the videos direct to a file share like from a NAS.. so its pretty stand alone.. all kinds of Hype and Hope from me that this will be something that can be recommended.
The user interface and remote have a long firmware line, its the same used since 2013 in many of their products.. so its probably stable.. but we'll see.
Sure it can be used with SD cards and USB hard drives.. but its independent of Windows 10 updates (Yahoo !!!!) or OSX or MacOS or whatever Apple is calling their platform today.
So I'm eager to look at it... before it gets to Amazon or the broader market.
Last edited by jwillis84; 14th May 2021 at 21:32.