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vhs to vcd or svcd or dvd???

Discussion in 'MPEG-1 and MPEG-2 encoding (AVI to DVD)' started by rebelrob, Jan 31, 2005.

  1. rebelrob

    rebelrob Guest

    I hope this is the correct forum. I have home video vhs and recorded vhs tapes from tv. Am I wasting my time if I try to convert my vhs to svcd or dvd format which is MpegII??? Or should I just stick with vcd format? Just trying to get these to cd before they turn into space dust. Im not sure if I can make the quality any better by going to mpegII. I have seen the quote garbage in - garbage out a few times.
    Any feedback would be appreciated.

    thx,
    R
     
  2. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    Encode to dvd spec for 1/4 D1 (352x240/288) mpeg-2. Bitrate between 2500 and 4000. (SVCD/VHS quality).
    Author to dvd in DVDLab.
    Burn.
    Voila, if done right, about 6 hours per dvdr.
     
  3. rebelrob

    rebelrob Guest

    reboot, not sure if I understand your instructions. Just looking to see if I will gain anything by taking vhs to svcd or dvd format??? These vhs tapes are home videos from 8mm cameras or taped shows from tv.
    Anybody else have any input. Also Im using nero ultra to create my vcd, svcd and dvd's.

    thx

    R
     
  4. aldaco12

    aldaco12 Active member

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    rebootjim is telling you to put many SVCD movies on a DVD, because SVCD quality is enough but you can fit many movies into a DVD. Looking on http://www.afterdawn.com/guides/ you can see an Afterdawn's guide to put mulyiple VCD movies on a DVD ([1] 44.1 Hz sound ---> 48 Hz sound to create a DVD-compliant moive; [2] a good authoring application [which supports mpeg-1 movies on a DVD] to author a DVD with 48 kHz-VCD movies you create).
    Avoid Nero, which will try to turn a small mpeg-1 movie into a BIG mpeg-2 movie for DVD (and therefore losing room in the DVD: 50' of SVCD movie = 800 MB; 1 DVD movie = 4.5 GB without gaining any quality)
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2005
  5. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    Because VHS quality is about equal to SVCD quality, I recommended 1/4 D1 as aspect ratio. Not exactly SVCD (which is 480x480), but still within dvd spec. 1/4 D1 is 352x240 (ntsc) and 352x288 (pal).
    This way you are not resizing the original pixel size very much, thus retaining most quality.
    Bitrate of 2500 is SVCD spec. No point in going much higher, and even the 4000 I said above, may be too much (depending on real quality of the original, and how many hours you want on the finished dvdr).
    Use DVDLab to author it. You can import the mpeg's directly, have dvdlab transcode audio to 48khz (or you can do this externally, which is actually a better idea, but more steps involved).
    Author directly to dvdr, with menus, fades, effects, whatever you want.
    DVDLab also has a built in basic burner (using ASPI), if you don't have access to anything better (Nero, et al).
    I made a successful business transferring VHS to DVD, and although there are a ton of methods, and equally a number of programs, you need to keep it simple for the first few tries.
    Capture directly from VHS to mpeg-2 if at all possible.
    Capture directly into the aspect ratio you need. In this case I recommended 352x240/288, depending if you are in PAL or NTSC areas.
    Capture audio at 48khz if at all possible.
    Edit if you must, in a good editor. I like Cuttermaran because it's free, and allows cutting on I, P, and B frames (frameaccurate). Most (cheaper) editors won't allow this.
    If you don't need to cut/edit, simply import the mpegs into dvdlab. Ignore any errors about incorrect video size, transcode audio (dvdlab does this for you if needed), add your menus, so you can select which video to watch.
    Compile and burn.
    I have numerous guides on how to do all the dvdlab stuff http://www.videohelp.com/guides.php...=0&listallusers=&search=Search+or+List+Guides

    p.s. If you compile a project that is too large for 1 dvdr, use DVDShrink to bring it down to size.

    p.p.s. I love my status "newbie"...lol. Not quite :D
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2005
  6. rebelrob

    rebelrob Guest

    Rebootjim,
    thx, I think I am gettin the picture now. Yes, my capture device will capture in mpeg2. I will just skip going from vhs to vcd and use svcd instead.
    DVDLab I hear you mention that a lot. Im using nero6 ultra. I was able to take a home video and convert it to mpeg2 dvd quality w/nero. Not sure if I lost quality, but it sounds like did from what you are mentioned. It was almost 3 gigs in size. If I download another program for burning or editing I think Im going to lose my mind. I have about 25 so far. BTW I use NTSC. I only need to worry about audio at 48khz if Im going to dvd format, correct?
    I will try your settings.
    thx,
    R
    I will try your settings and see how they work.
     
  7. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    No, don't capture at SVCD either!
    Capture at 352x240, aka 1/4 D1.
    This will display nicely on a TV (same aspect ratio more or less) and not decrease quality by resizing pixels. If you cap at 480x480 (1:1 aspect), something has to resize the pixels to get it to 4:3 (TV) aspect.
    The more resizing, the worse the quality gets.
    If you can't cap 48khz audio, not to worry. Demux the video and audio (there's lots of free tools to do this) and convert audio to 48khz AC3 with ffmpeggui (also free).
    AC3 is DVD compliant standard audio.
    Using Nero is OK. Not great, because of it's encoder engine. It's slow, and loves to screw with audio sync.
    I know how you feel about a ton of programs for video work. It's just the way it is, however, you can narrow it down to just the few that do what YOU want.
    After 25 years and way more than 25 programs, I have narrowed it down to the few that do things right.
    I'm also a cheapskate, so free is a bonus.
    Here's my shortlist:
    Virtualdub. Absolutely the best of the best for editing avi. virtualdub-mpg for editing mpg and frameserving. Free.
    Cuttermaran. Very easy to use mpeg editor. Does NOT re-encode anything. Free.
    Ffmpeggui. Convert extracted audio to AC3. Free.
    Canopus Procoder. Arguably the best encoder engine there is. Mainconcept runs a close second. CCE is also good, but extremely difficult to use. You pay for what you get in this category.
    DVDLab Pro. Arguably the best authoring program there is. Definitely best "bang for the buck", as other comparable apps cost $500 or more.
    If you're really cheap, you can get Gui for DVD Author (free), that allows a very limited menu.
    I hope some of this helps, and isn't too intimidating.
    Most newbies, when starting, get overwhelmed very quickly, and either give up, or plod through, doing things the wrong way, not asking enough questions, or being satisfied with second class results. Don't be.
    Don't try and learn all there is to learn about all the different apps. Find a process and programs that work, and perfect it. THEN go on to something new.
    The results are worth it :D
     
  8. rebelrob

    rebelrob Guest

    Cool,
    thanks for the tip. I will reset the size as you mentioned, I will see if Nero lets me resize, not for sure. Im guessing that by what your saying my first vhs to dvd obviously took away some quality since it was probably reframed at 720 by whatever, I forget the ratio that dvdmpegII is.
    I use DVD Decrypter for backups- great program
    DVD shrink- good for authoring-have not used anyothers
    TMPgenc mpeg editor w/ac3 plugin
    Virtualdubmod, new to this, have not messed with much
    winavi converter- great for compression the heck out of any video file. I luv it.
    Zealot all video converter- do much of the same as above.
    Alcohol 120%
    Dvd express for my capture device- walmart
    Gspot-to identify whatformat the video is in.
    plus a number of others I have used an unistalled. Like I said about 25 last time I counted.

    I apprecaite your list. Thx again,
    R
     
  9. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    DVDShrink isn't really an authoring program, but it does output the correct DVD Structure.
    Once you've gotten hands dirty in a great app like DVDLab, seen the possibilities, THEN things get interesting :D
    Please let us know how it all turns out, and don't be afraid to ask many more questions. I love a challenge :D
     
  10. rebelrob

    rebelrob Guest

    will do. I will get dvdlab 2nite.

    thx
     
  11. rebelrob

    rebelrob Guest

    rebootjim,

    which dvd lab do you reccomend? The regular or pro version. Im guessing the pro version has many more options and utilities.

    R
     
  12. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    Pro has many more options, but you probably won't use any of them for the first while.
    Download the regular demo, make a couple of successful dvd's, and when it expires in 30 days, download the Pro and go for another 30 days.
    Then buy the one you feel does what you need.
    I jumped into Pro after a week, mostly because of the special effects (D-FX) and the ability to generate a mpv motion menu. (no need to generate avi, then encode, import, etc...)
    My guides mostly apply to the Regular version.
     
  13. rebelrob

    rebelrob Guest

    rebootjim,

    I saw this thread you posted

    You don't want to do that.
    You want to make one big .AVI from it.
    Unrar the files in winrar.
    Join all in VirtualDub.
    Frameserve to encoder.
    Encode AVI to mpeg.
    Author and burn.

    I have virtualmoddub, I was able to join multiple avi files into one big one. Althought It turned my 5 avi 50 mgs files in quadruple that size. I guess I need to check the settings. But can you encode avi to mpeg with virtualdubmod? Also I did not see the frameserve to encoder, unless Im not looking hard enough. Maybe there is a guide.
    thx
    R
     
  14. rebelrob

    rebelrob Guest

    rebootjim,

    I saw this thread you posted

    You don't want to do that.
    You want to make one big .AVI from it.
    Unrar the files in winrar.
    Join all in VirtualDub.
    Frameserve to encoder.
    Encode AVI to mpeg.
    Author and burn.

    I have virtualmoddub, I was able to join multiple avi files into one big one. Althought It turned my 5 avi 50 mgs files in quadruple that size. I guess I need to check the settings. But can you encode avi to mpeg with virtualdubmod? Also I did not see the frameserve to encoder, unless Im not looking hard enough. Maybe there is a guide.
    thx
    R
     
  15. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    No, virtualdub does not encode to mpeg.
    If my source is avi, and I want to do any editing, or filtering, I do it all in virtualdub. If my source is mpeg, I use virtualdub-mod.
    Once I like my output, instead of saving it to a compressed avi (losing quality), saving it to a raw avi (VERY HUGE file, waste of time), I frameserve it.
    Here's how: http://www.videohelp.com/virtualdubframeserve.htm
    The advantages:
    It's much easier to edit and filter an avi, or at least the "appearance" of being an avi, in virtualdubmod.
    You're not saving an intermediate avi, which will either lose quality, or take up terrabytes of hard drive space.
    It will encode MUCH faster than using any filtering/editing in your encoder.
    eg. Tmpgenc is going to take 12 hours to encode 120 minutes of avi. Set Motion Search Precision to Estimate (fast), that's now down to about 6 hours, and I doubt your eyes will see the difference.
    Set Rate Control Mode to CQ-VBR. Q100
    Time is now down to about 3 hours.
    Add Noise reduction filter, Ghost reduction, and sharpen edge, and you're now back up to about 8 hours.
    Do noise reduction, ghost reduction, and sharpen in virtualdub, then frameserve, and you're back down to 3 hours :D
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2005
  16. rebelrob

    rebelrob Guest

    Thanks. Looks like I may have to get virtualdub, I have the vdmod version. I guess there is a little bit of difference in the gooey interface.

    Yep, I will check out that guide you sent me. As mentioned I have a handful of avi's downloaded from the net and want to put them all on one disk. But at the same time I just want to join them and not have them resized in fear of losing any quality.
    Thx, your help is most appreciated.

    R
     
  17. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    There's two ways to join.
    In virtualdub (or mod, doesn't matter), or in your authoring program after you've encoded them to mpeg.
    I prefer to author separate clips, so I can have a menu, to choose which one to watch.
    It's a pain having to ffwd to the spot you want, if all the clips are made into one movie.
     
  18. waltersbg

    waltersbg Member

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    rebootjim:

    I hope you are still monitoring this thread, because you sound like you're the "answerman" I need!

    I have a bunch of "classic" (to me) football games on VHS tapes. Because the broadcasts lasted anywhere from 2 hours to 5+ hours, all of these tapes were recorded in the VCR's SLP mode. Needless to say, they aren't what you would call great quality.

    I would like to get them on DVD. Mostly because they just feel "safer" on DVD. Partially because I don't have two good VCR's so I can't make copies of these tapes if anybody want one, but I can copy a DVD to tape. Partially because it would be nice to have the games accessible through a menu that could give a little info on the game and then have a submenu (chapter menu) which allows direct access to each quarter.

    I have all the authoring software I need. I don't need animated menus or anything, so I will either use NeroVision Express or one of the dvdauthor gui's.

    What I don't know how to do is to get these low-quality VHS tapes encoded and burnt to DVD in a way that will fit a 4+ hour game on a single DVD and yet will still be similar in quality to the original VHS.

    I don't need to add any fancy editing to the .mpg's other than to cut out commercials. So, if I capture directly to .mpg, I could use cutterman or something to do that.

    I read this thead with much interest. Most everything you said made sense. I can't capture these tapes in .avi mode, because I think the required disk space would be prohibitive. However, I'm very concerned that these noisy originals will suffer from severe pixelization or other artifacts when I capture at 1/4 D1. Maybe it isn't so much the resolution I capture at, but the bitrate?

    Is it just too much to ask to get these tapes to encode cleanly AND fit 4 hours worth on a single-layer DVD?

    I capture the analog video from the vcr by passing it through my digital camcorder, which then puts it out on firewire. Unfortunately, although my camcorder has an s-video input, my VCR only has composite video output. The only two pieces of software that I have that will capture and encode to .mpg on the fly are Windows Movie Maker and NeroVision Express.

    Is there some kind of filtering I should be doing prior to encoding? If so, since I can't fit the .avi's on my hard disk, would I need to set up some kind of "frameserving" thing to capture and filter in one program and then encode in another?

    Have I asked enough questions yet?

    Thanks to you or anybody else who can help me.

    Mike
     
  19. rebelrob

    rebelrob Guest

    waltersbg,
    I have been trying to do much of the same. I have been messing around with different quality settings like rebootjim had offered. Im not satisfied with my results yet though. My quality on these vhs tapes is crap to begin with and they are very old. But I want to get my old home video and others unreplaceable footage on to cd or dvd. I have tried capturing at mpeg1 352x240 and mpeg 2 352x240 and it really looks terrible. Its very pixely and fuzzy and just looks way to blown up as you would with a digital picture. Hmm not sure what Im doing wrong though. I will continue to make some more coasters. I went out and got DVD Lab Pro for a good authoring/editing tool. I have not used it yet. I may need to go get a guide on how to use. You will need to get those files captured to mpeg, then convert them to dvd format. If they are two big to fit onto a dvd you will need to shrink them using dvd shrink or probably dvd lab rebootjim swears by. If you get the file captured, nero 6 ultra will turn it into a dvd for you. But not sure it will fit onto one dvd5 +-R. DVD has to be in mpeg II and 48mhz audio format.
    Maybe rebootjim will come and add his expertise.

    r
     
  20. rebootjim

    rebootjim Active member

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    There are a couple of key things to remember.
    During capture, keep the aspect as close to the original as possible, this prevents resizing, losing quality. Hence my recommendation for 352x240/288.
    Keep the capture bitrate as HIGH as possible.
    Bitrate=quality. Higher is better.
    We can work with getting things to fit on dvdr later.
    Once you have your capture, even if it's .avi (a good .avi capture can maintain the quality of the original, but it's more difficult to do than mpeg-2 capture (don't use mpeg-1 capture!!!))
    Play the file back on the computer, in a good viewer, such as powerdvd, or windvd.
    It should look much like the original if you got the settings right.
    Now it's already in 1/4D1 mpeg-2 format. This is dvd spec, and can be authored directly to dvd in dvdlab.
    If you do any editing in an outside program such as Pinnacle or Premiere, you're bound to lose quality, if any portion of the video needs to be re-encoded.
    DO NOT re-encode anything you don't have to. You lose quality with every step.
    Cuttermaran is ideal for simply cutting out commercials, because it doesn't re-encode anything, and it's free.
    Once you have the saved mpeg, just author it.
    You could use something like ReJig to get a simple autoplay dvd, or DVDLab to get menus and lots of fancy stuff.
    I figure if you're going to take the time to make a nice DVD with high quality video, you should also make a decent menu system for it.
    Once it's authored and tested on your computer, if satisfied, burn. If it's too large, use DVDShrink to bring it down to size, then burn.
    Shrink does this job exactly as advertised, with a very minimum loss of quality. Most people can't see the difference.

    More specifics: Capturing to uncompressed avi will take up HUGE amounts of space on your HD. If you have the room, this is one way to go, because avi is much easier to edit. You can then frameserve to a dedicated encoder.
    Please do not use Nerovision or Window movie maker to capture. There are lots of other (some free) capture software. Look in the TOOLS section at www.videohelp.com and search for "capture".
    Pick one that will capture directly to mpeg-2 if possible. You could even use virtualdub to capture directly to .avi, but if you haven't the room, you need to use a compression codec, which can totally destroy quality.
    If you're interested in really good software, get Mainconcept mpeg encoder. It will capture and encode directly to mpeg-2. Pricey, at about $150, but a superb bit of software.
     

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