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Old January 29th, 2008, 08:21 PM   #1
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"VHS Look" in FCP 6 or Motion 3?

I've asked about this before, but only for Vegas. I was wondering, if by chance, there was a way to make your footage look like it was shot on a lower end camera, like VHS, using something in FCP 6 or Motion 3. I would, of course, want it to look as authentic as possible, so if it's not doable, I have my other method, which is to simply dub footage to VHS, then back to DV, then back to VHS, etc. 'til the desired degradation is achieved. If it can be done with FCP or Motion, though, that'd be a lot less of a pain.
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Old January 29th, 2008, 10:09 PM   #2
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Josh if you want it to look authentic why not buy or borrow an old VHS cam and shoot it with that, then digitize? I bet it would be worth the effort.
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Old January 29th, 2008, 11:27 PM   #3
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Oh, the footage was shot long ago on the XL2. When I first thought about the project, I was advised against shooting on VHS for realz due to the unreliability of real VHS gear. Easier to shoot nice and dumb it down later.
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Old January 30th, 2008, 12:15 AM   #4
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I had to recently make something shot with my XDCAM HD look like it came from a $50 b&w security camera. Here's the filter stack I'd use:

-gaussian blur (to bring down the perceived resolution, probably between 1 and 2 px)

-Sharpen, to add an unnatural white halo typical of bad edge enhancement circuits

-3-Way Color Correct, to destaurate or flatten out black levels per VHS

-And the real magic, the "Bad TV" filter, which is new in FCP6.

I feel it's important to degrade the image before you slap the Bad TV filter on, but to do it in a way that regards the electronics of the time. Below I've included my "reconstruction", similar to what I did a few months ago on my own project. The media I used for this was the Red demo quicktime "Crossing The Line", so you can go find a still and see just how badly I mangled the image..it was relatively pristine before all those filters.
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"VHS Look" in FCP 6 or Motion 3?-picture-1.jpg  
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Old January 30th, 2008, 01:33 AM   #5
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Not bad Weaver, looks pretty good (or bad) in the still. I'll have to try it on my footage and see if it passes muster.


You know what actually looks pretty convincing? When I apply those FX and play it, without rendering, because the unlimited realtime has to soften it to play in real time, it looks pretty authentic. . .is there a way to make it render at a lower resolution?
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Old January 30th, 2008, 07:30 AM   #6
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You could export at a lower resolution, or increase the blur as talked about earlier.

But yeah, render and replace as a lower resolution would achieve that.

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Old January 30th, 2008, 06:18 PM   #7
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Doing a low-res render would increase pixelation.

If you're digging the look of the low res render, just bump up the gaussian blur a pixel or two, as Carl mentioned.
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