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Old 26th September 2022, 21:56   #1  |  Link
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AV1 picture too smooth compared with VP9

Hi there,

i am trying to encode an "old movie" with 1080P from MP4/AVC-18GB to save some space - and just for trying.

With VP9 it takes in second pass 24 hours with 4 threads, good result!

I would like to use AV1, it uses more threads
(but not all 16, Intel 12600K, hmm)
and does it in a half about.

What me annoys: AV1 is smoothing way too much.
Example: on a face I cant see the wrinkles in the eyes
anymore and beauty spots vanish a bit but obvious.

I tried AV1 with lower preset but no visible effect at all, CRF also.

How can I tune it, not to smooth? Any experiences?

Here the command line for both, AV1 and VP9:
(ffmpeg und AV1encoder are latest stable build.)

ffmpeg -hide_banner -loglevel warning -i input.mp4 -nostdin -strict -1 -pix_fmt yuv420p10le -f yuv4mpegpipe - | SvtAv1EncApp --progress 1 -i stdin --lp 0 --tile-rows 3 --tile-columns 3 --preset 7 -q 20 --mbr 2000k --irefresh-type 2 --enable-restoration 0 --enable-dlf 0 --enable-cdef 0 --keyint 240 -b av1_libsvtav1_output.mkv
ffmpeg -i input.mkv -c:v libvpx-vp9 -b:v 2M -crf 30 -pass 2 -threads 16 -row-mt 1 -c:a copy output.webm
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Old 26th September 2022, 22:40   #2  |  Link
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Encoding the second movie:

with tile rows switch VP9 now it uses all 16 threads with 50%, thats great! But still a lot of time: 30 hours...

ffmpeg -i input.mkv -c:v libvpx-vp9 -b:v 2M -crf 30 -pass 2 
-threads 16 -row-mt 1 -tile-columns 4 -tile-rows 2 -an output.webm
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Old 27th September 2022, 01:35   #3  |  Link
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It's a feature of modern codecs that they increasingly degrade into loss of detail instead of creating visible artifacts. I wouldn't expect AV1 to look as good as VP9 at double the bitrate. If you want to do a comparison, start with the same bitrate and see if AV1 has more detail. Then you can reduce the bitrate until you start getting undesired detail loss.
Ben Waggoner
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Old 7th October 2022, 12:59   #4  |  Link
Artem S. Tashkinov
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AV1 looks like crap, sorry.

Last time I used it with these libaom 3.5 final release options and it smears out the details like there's no tomorrow:

./aomenc --end-usage=q --cq-level=12 --cpu-used=4 --threads=16 --bit-depth=10 --lag-in-frames=48
    --enable-fwd-kf=1 --enable-qm=1 --enable-chroma-deltaq=1 --quant-b-adapt=1 --mv-cost-upd-freq=2 
    --sharpness=3 --enable-keyframe-filtering=2 --arnr-strength=1 --disable-trellis-quant=0 -o out.webm out.y4m
cq-level=12 !!! That's almost lossless.

I'm disappointed as hell. Now trying vvenc-1.6.1 which is slow as hell but on a first attempt it looks much better:

./vvencapp --preset slower -qp 20 -i out.y4m --output=bit.266
Edit: at qp=20 the bitrate matches the bitrate of the original H.264 video. LOL.

Modern codecs are something. Weird.

Truth to be told I don't know how to use x264 properly. My source is encoded at 40Mbit/sec. I can only get comparable quality if I encode it at ... 35MBit/sec despite the source being produced by a terrible HW encoder and the result produced by the latest revision of x264 with the following flags:

ffmpeg -i source.mp4 -c:a copy -c:v libx264 -preset veryslow -x264opts keyint=180:min-keyint=30:bframes=16 -crf 17 -tune grain result.mkv

Last edited by birdie; 7th October 2022 at 17:05.
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Old 9th October 2022, 00:52   #5  |  Link
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The smoothing you're seeing is from temporal filtering. Try disabling it using --arnr-strength=0 --arnr-maxframes=0 --enable-keyframe-filtering=0.

I'm not sure why you're using custom settings like --enable-qm=1 --enable-chroma-deltaq=1 --quant-b-adapt=1 --mv-cost-upd-freq=2 --sharpness=3, you should use codec defaults for these unless you know what you're doing.
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av1, ffmpeg, vp9

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