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Old 26th December 2014, 06:52   #1  |  Link
jrodefeld
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I have a short deadline to make this video look as good as possible - Suggestions?

Hello everyone,

I am currently putting together a wedding anniversary video for my grandparents who are celebrating their 60th married year.

Anyway I have about 24 hours to put something good together. I have about four or five minutes of old footage of their actual wedding that was shot in the 50s. I will use that and then add on a slide show of old photos.

But I want some suggestions on what can be done to this footage to make it look as good as it possibly can. The source I have is flawed to say the least. The old 35mm film was put onto a VHS tape before I was born and that old VHS tape was captured and put on a DVD. That is the source I have now.

Here is a copy of it (compressed to have a reasonable size):

https://www.dropbox.com/s/farsk2wiqa...e_out.mp4?dl=0

Remember I have only 24 hours to finish this. I would greatly appreciate any suggestions. Maybe you could suggest an AVIsynth script that will clean it up and fix whatever problems can conceivably be fixed?

Thanks.
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Old 26th December 2014, 07:21   #2  |  Link
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No, cuz Xmas weeks ain't over and u don't work on holidays
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Old 26th December 2014, 18:17   #3  |  Link
johnmeyer
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I restore media for a hobby/living. I have several comments and suggestions.

1. If you have access to the original film, get a better transfer.

2. If you must use this transfer, then you can refer to the two big VideoFred threads on restoring old film. You'll find these both in this forum.

3. I haven't actually put your video into my editing system to see how it has be telecined, but how that was done will make a HUGE difference in what you'll be able to do with the footage. If you want to do restoration like VideoFred describes, the video must be IVTC'd back to its original film frames, with all the pulldown frames removed, before you can use a lot of the advance restoration techniques described in this forum and elsewhere.

4. If you want to brighten the footage, that should be done in an NLE, where you can do the brightening interactively. You never want to use "brightness" and "contrast" controls. They almost always ruin the footage. Instead, you need to brighten only bthose pixels that are almost, but not quite, completely black, while leaving the absolute black pixels untouched,. You also want to leave the highlights pretty near their original brightness. I use Sony Vegas, and it has a custom histogram tool called "Color Curves" that easily accomplishes these tasks.

5. After brightening the inverse telecined footage, you'll almost certainly need to denoise the footage, because the brightening process will reveal all sorts of video noise and also possibly film grain. It will not look good. A very large percentage of the threads in this forum are concerned, to one degree or another, with denoising, so I wouldn't even know where to begin in offering a suggestion.

If you had more than 24 hours, I'd suggest you send it to me. Is this hours of footage, or just a few minutes?

BTW, the very first video production I did was for my own parent's 60th wedding anniversary in 2002 (yes, that makes me pretty old). I too used a combination of 16mm movie film that my dad and his father had taken in the 1920s, and also Super 8 film I took in the 1960s, along with various still photos.

Good luck with your production!
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Old 26th December 2014, 18:45   #4  |  Link
johnmeyer
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I wasn't expecting to fire up my editing computer today (the holidays, as already mentioned elsewhere ...), but I did, and I looked more closely at your video.

The good news: the telecine is merely a frame duplication, so all you have to do, before you edit, is to delete every other frame, a trivial operation in AVISynth.

The bad news: the encoding on what you uploaded is absolutely awful. It is encoded at only 1,584 kbps. Now perhaps you just did that to make the upload a reasonable size, and if so, that's OK. However, if this is what you have to work with, yikes!

So, if this is an "Internet version" of your original video, and if you still want some help, then upload a few seconds of cut, but not re-encoded, footage that you consider to be your biggest challenge, and I'll see what I can do and then offer some specific suggestions.
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Old 27th December 2014, 06:32   #5  |  Link
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no, there's no way to save a vhs tape since the image quality of an analog video tape is... well you know, too lost
if I have to do this, make the vhs video display on modern digital high res screen, I will just use this to imitate how it should be displayed, yeah, an old crt screen style on your nowaday screen
the quality might be subjectively a lot better than all that "denoise+sharpen+color adjustments..." complex combo
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Old 30th December 2014, 16:35   #6  |  Link
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I'll add a couple of thoughts based on my own experiences with similar awful-source-material challenges.

Much of what we see that's troubling looks like either due to your compression for sharing, OR it's actually in the DVD. Based on my experience, I'm guessing a lot of it is in the DVD. I am guessing that a perfectly fine 35mm source was partly ruined by a bad VHS transfer. Then it was made even worse by a bad transfer to DVD. And now you want to undo the damage as much as possible.

First, John Meyer speaks much truth-to-awfulness

Next, in reverse order (from you-could-do-this-for-sure to hard-to-do-but-more-desirable):

1) Keep your expectations low. VERY low. This video is close to completely ruined. I would be inclined to resize it downward... wayyy downward. 320x240. Maybe even 160x120. Once you have it that small, it should look sharp again. And your audience will better understand why it looks fuzzy when/if you blow it up for a bigger screen.

2) I have come to greatly appreciate NeatVideo for its ability to quickly and relatively painlessly clean up horrible messes. It can remove much of the MPEG blockiness, if that's in your original. It can sharpen some truly awful source material and make it at least watchable.

3) I would run a light denoise pass before doing much else, and ALSO run it after having adjusted brightness (what John says about care in brightness adjustments is important...)

4) If there is any way to find the VHS source, you can likely retransfer from VHS today with much better quality than what was done for this DVD. You need a great quality VHS deck, hopefully with TBC (Time Base Corrector) and S-Video output. I have a Panasonic deck for this purpose. Originally around $1500-2000 and used for broadcast purposes... I picked it up on eBay for $70

I run video from that through a DV recorder, not to actually do any recording but because the DV recorder converts from analog video to Firewire DV -- which can easily be directly captured in my PC! No fuss, no muss.
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Old 1st January 2015, 06:58   #7  |  Link
jrodefeld
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Thanks for the suggestions. I ended up using a few filters (including NeatVideo), I cut out the worst parts and I made it as watchable as possible.

I also created a mask in Photoshop. I made a high resolution border of roses that goes together with some AE animation that preceded it. Not only does it blend in with the theme, it distracts from the poor quality of the video.

This is not something I'm getting paid for. It was a favor I was doing for family who will likely be thrilled that I did anything. Furthermore, the footage of the wedding is only a small part of the video, the other consists of an animated slideshow.

I think it worked out fine. I know they have the VHS tape still so I could probably transfer it again at some point.

Thanks for the suggestions regardless.
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Old 3rd January 2015, 16:56   #8  |  Link
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Just getting started on the same type of problem.

I have a similar task - cleaning up 20 reels of 8mm film from my in-laws. I’ve had the film digitized and after searching I found this forum and the videoFred script which seemed like a decent solution and the techniques that he describes for cleaning up a stream of images in a film all appear to be quite reasonable algorithmic approaches to cleanup and noise reduction.

I’m not a complete newbie to this world having worked in computerized video motion capture for 20 years but this is my first foray into the world of restoration.

My computer is a 2.3GHz dual core ThinkCenter with 3Gb memory and 1Tb disk running 32-bit Windows 7 Home Premium. I download and install avisynth_258.exe from source forge and loaded a copy VideoFred’s Film_Restoring_vs_06_2012.zip in c:\temp - I also download and installed avisyntheditor_0.4 and updated to the 0.5 version.

I copied my avi file to c:\temp\reel_01.avi and made a copy of 01_A_Restoring_Frame_Interpolation.avs which I edited to open my first 3.8Gb video file:
Line 24 film= "C:\temp\reel_01.avi"

Running the script generates an error - LoadPlugin: unable to load “plugins/DeFlicker.dll”

I add a variable “dir = “c:/temp/scripts/” on line 25 and change all the LoadPlugin references from LoadPlugin("plugins/DeFlicker.dll” to LoadPlugin(dir+"plugins/DeFlicker.dll” to point them at the right location since avisynth doesn’t seem to be finding them - although the script appears to expect that it would be able to open them.

With the new dir variable most of the dlls appear load but I still get the error LoadPlugin: unable to load “plugins/removegrain.dll” as well as with removedirt.ddl and warpsharp.dll. Commenting out the failing dlls gets me to line 158 with the error DePanEstimate: Can not load FFTW3.DLL! Even though the fftw3.dll is in the same directory as the scripts as described in the Installing_help.txt file supplied with the scripts.

Moving FFTW3.DLL from the scripts directory to the windows system32 directory gets past that error - and then I get: Script error: there is no function named “Clense” (C:/temp/scripts/plugins/03_removeDirtMC.avs, line 5).

So why do the three dlls (removegrain, removedirt, and warpsharp fail to load?

I’m guessing that since the original script is quite old, the current version of avisynth and the dlls have some issues that nobody’s bothered to fix, document, or update?

Replacing removegrain.dll and removedirt.dll with removegrains.dll and removedirts (the static linked versions) seems to help (they load without errors at least) and a copy of warpsharp.dll from warpsharp_5F25_dll_20030103 from http://www.avisynth.nl/users/warpenterprises/ finally gets the script through to line 192 and the message Script error: there is no function named “unsharpmask” ... looks like the version of removedirtmcs.dll has a problem.

Last week I spent about a day trying to learn to use avisynth and the VideoFred script and while it seems that there are people here who can make it work it’s clear that the chances of someone like myself visiting this forum and getting avisynth working in a day or two are vanishingly small. I appreciate that my task - restoring some 8mm family videos - is not really in the main stream of these forums, and that in all likelihood I’ll probably end up buying some commercial program to do this (looking at CyberLink PowerDirector 13 at the moment) but I really like the avisynth approach.

I know - I’ve got some learning to do, avisynth looks like a good solution and the theory of operation is sound - but how much time do I need to invest to get avisynth functioning to the point where I can get some work done?

Sorry that this is such a long first post - it's not a rant, I'm just trying to figure out which cliff I should jump off, avisynth or commercial editing software.
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Old 3rd January 2015, 17:27   #9  |  Link
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Try this tool http://forum.doom9.org/showthread.php?t=170647
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Old 3rd January 2015, 19:25   #10  |  Link
johnmeyer
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Just make sure you use the DLLs from Fred's zip package. Put EVERYTHING in one folder, and make sure your variables all point to that folder.
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