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SIMPLE EDITING

Discussion in 'Other video questions' started by jlrm365, Feb 11, 2005.

  1. jlrm365

    jlrm365 Regular member

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    movietoolbox.com is a site I would recommend to users looking for neat, simple solutions.

    One thing I now need is to do some simple editing. Here are the (related) issues:

    - letterbox content: There is a stamp within the black area of the letterbox. It runs the entire length of the movie. How can I remove or cover them?
    - letterbox edges: The letterbox / movie edges, where the black meets the movie, are a little dull. Can I sharpen or cover / redo them?

    Which piece of software could do these things most simply?

    If it does not have it's own guide or is not simple enough to figure out, can you please explain it?

    One other thing. I am a user of other parts of this forum but not this one, so...

    Is this the correct area to post these questions or is it more of a DVD-R question?
     
  2. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    What exactly are you editing?
    Mpeg-2, avi, wmv?
     
  3. jlrm365

    jlrm365 Regular member

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    They have all been AVI files so far.

    I stiched two halved of Elektra together with a little something from the aforementioned site.

    It has some obvious brands below the mailbox edge, on the black, and... as I have said... I would like to be able to get rid of them or drop some black over them and redo the edge.

    So... AVI editing is my current interest. What would be best to use, to do as I have described?

    How about for Mpeg-2 and wmv files? What would I use, to do the same as I have just described?

    Please keep in mind that I am looking for simplicity and ease of use!

    Thanks a lot!
     
  4. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    Heads above the rest is virtualdub for editing avi.
    Get "Region Remove" filter by Shaun Faulds (Google it), to remove the "branding". The other option (if the branding is inside the black box) is to just use the "Fill" filter in virtualdub. Your other option is to crop the top and bottom, removing the black alltogether.
    WMV and MPG can be edited as well, although not nearly as easily. Mpeg can be done in tmpgenc (crop filter, etc.), and WMV should be converted to mpeg or avi before any editing, unless you want to fight with windows movie maker.

    If they're the files I'm thinking of, here's what I do.
    Load the first half into virtualdub.
    Click File, append avi segment, and load the second half.
    Select Video, filters, and double click on Sharpen.
    Slide the slider up to 20.
    Click OK.
    Hilight the sharpen, and click on Cropping.
    Crop the top and bottom off the video. (this removes the branding).
    Start the frameserver and encode.
    Your other option is to use the FILL filter to fill the black parts, with new black parts, which blanks out the branding, but if you're encoding to mpeg to burn, you're wasting a ton of bitrate encoding black. Better to crop, then adjust input settings on your encoder to the correct aspect.
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2005
  5. jlrm365

    jlrm365 Regular member

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    Sounds like what I was looking for, though I cannot be sure until I do it! Thanks a lot :)
     
  6. jlrm365

    jlrm365 Regular member

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    Something else I should ask... Is "Virtualdub" a tool that could make seemless joins between avi files?
     
  7. jlrm365

    jlrm365 Regular member

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    Seamless that should be... and I believe you have already answered the question. I am taking Love Actually from Ares and it's coming in two halves... so I shall keep you informed!
     
  8. jlrm365

    jlrm365 Regular member

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    To: rebootjim

    -----

    You should know I am starting from idiot level when it comes to VirtualDub and avi editing. Having said that, to my untrained eyes, it seems as though some steps were missing from your directions.

    I'll detail what I did, as I believe I had to do a little more than what I read in your directions, and you may be able to point out some mistakes.

    I had already joined the two halves, using a simple application, so missed out your first three steps and began with:

    -----

    "Select Video, filters, and double click on Sharpen"

    From there, I clicked:

    - Video
    - Filters
    - Add
    - Sharpen
    - Ok
    - (Slider) 20
    - Ok
    - Cropping
    - (Y1 offset) 48
    - (Y2 offset) 48
    - Ok
    - Ok

    I can now see my input preview but my output, though cropped to size, appears grey.

    -----

    Here, and please note this point, things become strange. Your method is "Option One".

    "Start the frameserver and encode"
    You had not mentioned where to look, so I clicked:

    - File
    - Start frame server
    - Start
    - (Name, when prompted to save) "test" (as it is my first use).

    A window now hovers, titled "Frameserver mode - VirtualDub". In it, I can see:

    - Frameserver name: ELEKTRA.avi (source)
    - Non-A/V requests: 0
    - Number of frames served: 0
    - Audio segments delivered: 0

    - Frameclients installed: None

    The window just sits there, none of the data changing, and so I click "Stop serving"

    Having been prompted to save as a "VirtualDub AVIFile signpost", I now have what seems to be a useless 32K "test" .vrd file and no obvious idea of how to proceed in that direction.

    -----

    "Option Two" is to return to just before the point noted. Instead of proceeding with Option One, I clicked:

    - File
    - Save as AVI

    A window hovers over the input and output previews, which are now moving, titled:

    "VirtualDub Status - [ELEKTRA.avi]"

    I click "Abort", as this is a test and I do not want to wait for the whole movie to render.

    The resulting file seems bloated beyond comprehension but it plays.

    -----

    So... Option One puzzles me and Option Two seems to work, in a way. I am sure you would have told me to use Option Two had it been better, so:

    - Why is Option One better?
    - What must I do now, to continue with Option One?
     
  9. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    Option one.
    Install the frameclient.
    Open the virtualdub folder on your hard drive, click AuxSetup.exe install it.
    Restart virtualdub.
    Load your movie.
    For cropping, you want to crop/cover the portion you want removed, in the grey. The output should show the result.
    Start the frameserve, save the file as filename.vdr.avi
    Open that avi in tmpgenc, and encode.

    Option 2
    This saves a HUGE avi to your hard drive, uncompressed. It is equal in quality to the original.
    If you have the room, you can do this, then encode the resulting avi, with no loss in quality.
     
  10. jlrm365

    jlrm365 Regular member

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    Me being a beginner, I must remind you of that and of my need for you to spell things out. Unsure of what you meant in places, I clicked:

    - AuxSetup
    - Install handler
    - Ok
    - Ok
    - Exit
    - VirtualDub

    Again, as above (when video file had been opened), I clicked:

    - Video
    - Filters
    - Add
    - Sharpen
    - Ok
    - (Slider) 20
    - Ok
    - Cropping
    - (Y1 offset) 48
    - (Y2 offset) 48
    - Ok
    - Ok

    I continued to click:

    - File
    - Start frame server
    - Start

    When the "Save .VDR signpost for AVIFile handler" box comes up, the only "Save as type" option I can see is "VirtualDub AVIFile signpost (*.vdr)".

    In the blank "Filename" box, I do as you suggest and type "filename.vdr.avi" (being pedantic) and click "Save".

    Again the window hovers, titled "Frameserver mode - VirtualDub". In it, I can see:
    - Frameserver name: ELEKTRA.AVI (source)
    - Non-A/V requests: 0
    - Number of frames served: 0
    - Audio segments delivered: 0

    - Frameclients installed: AVIFile only (the one change)

    As before, I click "Stop serving"

    A similar situation now exists. I have what seems to be a useless 32K "filename.vdr" file in my folder. Its seems to be recognised by WinAmp, whereas the other was not, though also does nothing when double clicked.

    I remain optimistic, close VirtualDub and open TMPGEnc. It's wizard screen has selected "PAL", underneath "DVD", in it's main selection area... and "CBR MPEG-1 Layer II Audio (MP2)" above it's "Next" button.

    Of course I click "Next".

    To the right of where it says "Video File:" and the blank, I click "Browse".

    Clicking the file named "filename.vdr.avi", that now appears as "filename.vdr", and choosing "Open"... I am met with the following error message:

    "File "C:\Documents and Settings\Private\Desktop\filename.vdr.avi" cannot open, or unsupported"

    I begin again... all steps from the begining of this post... three times.

    Not once have I made it past this error message and I am wondering how to proceed.

    Your ideas?
     
  11. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    In order to frameserve, you must leave the framserver running in virtualdub the whole time you are encoding.
    Don't click on STOP!
    Once you have vdub running, framserver serving, file saved as filename.vdr.avi, open your encoder (tmpgenc), and load filename.vdr.avi and encode it.
    Select ES Video only.
    Let it run.
    When it's done, close tmpgenc.
    Stop frameserving.
    In virtualdub (still open!), click Audio, Full processing.
    Click File, Save .wav
    Give it a name, and save it somewhere by clicking SAVE.
    You will now have a .wav file, and a .m2v file.
    Now I need to know if you're making an (S)VCD or a DVD, as the procedure from here is different, depending.
     
  12. jlrm365

    jlrm365 Regular member

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    One other problem now, of a different nature:

    "Let it run"

    When I do, I notice a rather major format issue!

    The most recent codec I have installed is DivX521XP2K (from divx.com).

    It not only removes the letterbox and squashes the picture into a square, it also drops a watermark into the corner.

    Removing this codec fixes that issue, but...

    I have not been able to find a codec that will keep letterboxes as they are or add a little, to allow me to keep correct aspect ratio.

    Where can I find one?
     
  13. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    You can remove the logo (which only lasts a few seconds anyhow, at the beginning, by selecting the codec, then click on the configuration, then the Quality settings tab, put a tick in Disable Logo.

    Virtualdub only outputs what you want it to.
    If you're cutting off the top and bottom, you end up with an anamorphic widescreen. It may not be exactly 16:9, so you need to change some settings in tmpgenc.
    Calculate your video output size in virtualdub, by saving a frame (or a short piece of your movie).
    If you removed 48pix from top and bottom, it will be approx 352x144, which is 2.44:1 (yours may be different).
    In tmpgenc, Advanced tab, select source aspect ratio to be 16:9
    Video Arrange Method, Full Screen, keep aspect ratio 2.
    On the Video tab, make sure that SIZE is set to what you want for output. 720x480 for NTSC dvd. Aspect ratio to 4:3 for normal TV.
    This should letterbox it correctly.
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2005
  14. jlrm365

    jlrm365 Regular member

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    RE: YOUR (rebootjim's) SUGGESTIONS:

    "selecting the codec, then click..."
    I have installed FFDSHOW, as the afterdawn guide suggests, and that seems to have taken care of my codec compatibility issues.

    "so you need to change some settings in tmpgenc"
    Which are the changes needed, from what you have suggested, as a result of my pixel removal and which are standard optimisation?

    "Calculate your video output size in virtualdub, by..."
    Having installed "AVIcodec", right clicking on the video file and choosing "AVIcodec : detailed information" makes things easier.


    RE: AFTERDAWN & VIDEOHELP:

    Using the wizard, afterdawn's guide says: "On third page, the top three checkboxes should be left intact in most of the cases". What for? Can none of them improve my end result? Which of them would you change and how, if at all?

    -----

    Can you tell me why, as far as "Other settings"/"Video" tab goes, videohelp's guide:

    ( http://www.videohelp.com/forum/userguides/186739.php )

    has chosen to be quite specific about frame and bitrates, whereas afterdawn's guide:

    ( http://www.afterdawn.com/guides/archive/convert_avi_to_dvd_page_4.cfm)

    has decided to "force TMPGEnc to do the encoding using multi-pass encoding"... and alter the Bitrate settings in another step?

    -----

    As far as "Other settings"/"Video" tab goes, videohelp's guide changes the "DC component precision" option for PAL and NTSC, whereas afterdawn's guide seems to leave that option at "9 bits" for both? What is the significance of the "DC component precision" option?

    On the same tab, videohelp has also opted for "Motion search precision" to be set at "Motion estimate search (fast)", whereas afterdawn seems to have chosen the more sensible "Highest quality (very slow)" option. Is there any reason other than speed / quality?

    -----

    Afterdawn has not specifically mention the "Other settings"/"Advanced" tab but why has videohelp chosen to set "Video arrange Method" at "Full screen (keep aspect ratio)", whereas you advised "Full screen (keep aspect ratio 2)"? What is the significance of each and of the difference?

    Also on the the "Other settings"/"Advanced" tab, some of the tick boxes (specifically "Noise reduction" and "Custom color correction") look useful. Why not check them?

    -----

    Videohelp uses one application to author and burn it's DVD - TMPGEnc DVD Author. Afterdawn uses two to author and burn - IFOEdit and Nero. I tend to prefer the videohelp method, as it uses one application, but I am more familiar with the method of afterdawn. Which do you consider a better method and why?


    INCIDENTAL:

    Is it possible to message other users directly? If so, how?

    In which country are you? Is it the same one as where you are from? If not, where are you from?
     
  15. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    These are suggested because of your removal of 48pix top and bottom.
    I use Gspot. Whatever works for you.
    I always use 10. The DC component represents the average brightness of a block (8x8 pixel region). In MPEG-1 video this is fixed to 8 bits, but MPEG-2 allows higher precision. It is important that the DC component is accurately represented, so a setting of 10 is recommended for MPEG-2 sequences, unless you are encoding using a low bitrate.
    Speed and quality. Depending on source, mes (fast) will usually work fine. If your eyes can tell the difference, and you prefer hq (very slow), try it. I see no point in wasting double or triple the time to encode by using hq on MOST sources.
    The first uses a different algorythm to resize. The second is a bit faster, use it.
    This will dramatically increase encoding time. If you use filters in virtualdub and frameserve, you don't add any increase in encoding time, and can get the same results.
    If encoding directly from an avi (not frameserving) you could experiment, but take the same avi, filter and frameserve from virtualdub, and it's much faster.
    I hate both. The guides are just opinions. I find TDA too limiting, and ifoedit with Nero gives you nothing but an autoplay dvd, no menus or anything.
    Author in DVDLab, burn with whatever you have that burns. Nero, DVD Decrypter, DVDLab, Roxio, Alcohol120%, Fireburner, whatever.
     
  16. jlrm365

    jlrm365 Regular member

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    "These are suggested because of your removal of 48pix top and bottom"

    So I would not do them normally?

    ---

    "a setting of 10 is recommended for MPEG-2 sequences"
    "Depending on source, mes (fast) will usually work fine"
    "The second is a bit faster, use it"

    Cheers.

    ---

    "filters in VirtualDub and frameserve, you don't add any increase in encoding time"

    Ok. So far we have discussed just the sharpen filter in its relation to cropping.

    Which other VirtualDub filters do you use, how and why (If not included with VirtualDub, where do I find them?)?

    ---

    "IFOEdit with Nero gives you nothing but an autoplay dvd, no menus or anything"

    To my mind, that's a good thing. When using Shrink I have been taking just the main movie, to decrease the need for compression, so I reckon I'll use the afterdawn method, add chapter breaks as detailed and leave it at that.
     
  17. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    Filters in virtualdub...
    There's about 30 included, and equally as many on the web.
    Each filter does a specific task.
    If you have washed out colours, use HSV adjust.
    If you have brightness/contrast issues, I much prefer the "Levels" filter, than the built in bright/cont one.
    Sharpen you have figured out, it simply sharpens up the picture. Don't go over 30, or things get really messed on the TV during playback. 20 is usually good for downloaded sources. If you DON'T want it sharper, don't use it.
    The list goes on and on, and some filters are specific to the source file (3:2 etc.) whereas, some are specific to visual tweaks, others are specific to size/aspect.
    Play with them until you get to know what you need for any given input, to get desired output.
    You don't have to actually save anything, just compare the input to output within the vdub screens.

    Downloadable filters: Region Remove by Shaun Faulds. Absolutely indispensible for removing TV logos, and other embedded junk. I also use it to remove hard coded subs I don't need. There are a whole bunch more, such as 2d Cleaner and Smart Smoother. Download a few and try them out. Use what you need.
    If you want to see some screenshots, I can get a bunch, showing how one can radically improve the output of a crappy source avi.

    If you're happy with an autoplay dvd, fine. This works for feature movies, unless you want multiple movies on one dvdr. For home movies/clips, memorabilia, birthdays, Christmas, whatever, I prefer to author with a nice menu structure.
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2005
  18. jlrm365

    jlrm365 Regular member

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    "If you have washed out colours, use HSV adjust"
    How about if you have more of one colour than you'd like? Often, there is a lot of blue in a camera recorded film.

    "brightness/contrast issues, I much prefer the "Levels" filter"
    How is it better than the brightness contrast filter?

    It seems you cannot crop without using a filter and then applying the crop. Is this the case? If not, how can I crop without a filter?

    "others are specific to size/aspect"
    Can you tell me about those? Having cropped a file, I was under the impression that frameserving kept the aspect correct, so what do these do and how?

    "Region Remove by Shaun Faulds"
    Do filters belong in the VirtualDub plugins folder?

    "I also use it to remove hard coded subs I don't need"
    It could not get rid of the subtitles in a camera recorded movie but can it get rid of that screener notice on screener films? If so, how do I implement it to do so?

    "2d Cleaner and Smart Smoother"
    It seems as though there is an optimised version of 2d which, according to it's developer's claims, is quicker than both of those: http://neuron2.net/2dcleaner.html

    "If you want to see some screenshots"
    It seems to me as though we've covered everything:

    1 - 2d cleaner to clean
    2 - Sharpen to edge the results
    3 - HSV adjust and/or levels if needed (would this step go earlier?)

    Something else that has only started happening a day or so ago... and with the same unaltered files, that worked perfectly beforehand, is the following error message:

    VBR audio stream detected
    "VirtualDub has detected an improper VBR audio encoding in the source AVI file..."

    I won't continue, as I am sure you know the one. It results in most of the operating aread becoming filled with one the source screen and only an edge of the destination screen being visible. This happend with all of my avi files except the camera recording, which doesn't seem to have caused any problems. How can I correct this?
     
  19. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    HSV will take care of the blue. Play with the 3 sliders until you get what you want.

    Brightness/contrast apply certain filters to the output. Levels allows you to adjust even more, for better results. Play with it, using the Preview screen. Choose a washed out scene, poor contrast, maybe too brught as well. It's amazing what you can do just using the two sliders on the input levels.

    You must use at least one filter to use cropping. A bug in the program.

    Other filters I was referring to, such as 2:1 reduction will change the aspect size. Not usually used much.

    Yes, put downloaded filters into the Plugins folder.

    Region remove blurs a portion of the screen. The Fill filter fills a portion of the screen with black (or any other colour), and of course cropping.
    If the subs are within the normal picture area, I use Region Remove, otherwise one of the other two options works.
    To use region remove, open your video, select it as filter and hit the Preview button.
    put a tick in the Border box. It shows a white dotted line box in the middle of the screen.
    Adjust height, width and placement of the box using the X, Y settings. You will see what happens.

    Yes, the optimized 2d cleaner is what I use in some cases.

    Doesn't matter much what filter you use in what order, but I would start with sharpen, cropping, then color correction, etc.

    Vdub gives that error on VBR mp3 audio streams. Ignore it and save out the audio as we discussed.
    In VirtualDub (still open!), click Audio, Full processing.
    Click File, Save .wav
    Give it a name, and save it somewhere by clicking SAVE.
    If you try to encode audio with video using VBR mp3 audio, it will go WAY out of sync.

    Back in 10 minutes with a few pictures showing before and after, using different filters in vdub.

    Original frame:
    [​IMG]

    Sharpen at 20 and cropped, not a huge difference:
    [​IMG]

    HSV adjust Saturation 150%, green is now green, the girl actually looks human not grey:
    [​IMG]

    Levels, Input at 25, 1.000, 200, big change in contrast, not brightness, much clearer picture. Notice the sun on her shirt, it's white like it's supposed to be:
    [​IMG]

    Now frameserve that to tmpgenc, using 16:9 as source aspect, keep aspect ratio 2, output 4:3.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2005
  20. jlrm365

    jlrm365 Regular member

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    "Other filters I was referring to, such as 2:1 reduction will change the aspect size. Not usually used much"
    It prompted me to consider if there is a filter to intelligently increase resolution, thereby not distorting / pixelating the output too much. Is there?

    It would be nice to think I could bump a 576x240 to a 640 x 288(approx) and not lose too much, but is that pipe dreaming?

    "Region remove blurs a portion of the screen"
    Screener warnings cover quite a portion of the screen. It would be almost as visually bad to blur out those words than leave them, would it not?

    "Ignore it and save out the audio as we discussed"
    I am not so worried about the audio at this stage. I am more concerned that my input and output preview screens are all out of whack.

    What must be done to settle that problem?

    "using 16:9 as source aspect, keep aspect ratio 2, output 4:3"
    Why would you want output to be so? Is that not standard television screen size, instead of widescreen?
     

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